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The Gaslight Dogs Mass Market Paperback – April 1, 2010


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit; 1 edition (April 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316021792
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316021791
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,775,133 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Karin Lowachee was born in Guyana, South America and moved to Toronto, Canada when she was two. Before her foray into fantasy, she wrote three highly-acclaimed science fiction novels - Warchild, Burndive, and Cagebird. Warchild won the Warner Aspect First Novel Award and Cagebird won the 2006 Gaylactic Spectrum Award and the Prix Aurora Award and was a finalist for the 2002 Philip K. Dick Award. She currently resides in Ontario, Canada.

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Customer Reviews

I found I didn't care enough about what happened to even read the ending.
L. A. Turner
I might have expected more from this book based on the blurb then I should have but either way, this book just wasn't what I was hoping for.
Amazon Customer
I felt like there wasn't much between the two main characters Sjenn and Jarrett; their relationship didn't progress at all.
Lisa (Starmetal Oak Reviews)

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Lisa (Starmetal Oak Reviews) on May 8, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In this novel Lowachee creates a very unique world that takes inspiration from our colonial history and the conflicts between aboriginals and colonizers. She adds flare and magic to this familiar story and makes it her own.

I have a couple main issues with the book. Firstly, it felt like a very long introduction to a bigger story because there is not much in way of plot and the ending isn't satisfying. I felt like there wasn't much between the two main characters Sjenn and Jarrett; their relationship didn't progress at all. I think that Lowachee only touched the surface of what could have been; this is mirrored in the many times I felt scenes would start to get somewhere but then end abruptly. Sjenn and Jarrett will start talking, but then one will stop or leave. Jarrett and his father would push against each other but before any eruption of emotions, the scene would end.

I'm not sure what the message of this book is. I thought in the end Jarrett would come around, or that his father would get what he deserves, Sjenn would find comfort.

In the end, I did enjoy the book because of the good writing, a very intriguing premise, and good characters. If there is a series coming out of this I am sure the next installment will (hopefully) resolve some of these stories. I'm just disappointed that it wasn't included as one book so we wouldn't have to go on this journey without any resolution. I would recommend this for anyone who is looking for a more character-driven story, spirit-based magic, and a Northern setting.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Stefan VINE VOICE on August 16, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Karin Lowachee, who has written three highly acclaimed SF novels, released her first fantasy novel, The Gaslight Dogs, in April 2010 -- and it's another good one. The novel has two memorable main characters, Sjennonirk (or Sjenn for short) and Jarrett, as well as several well-drawn side characters. Sjenn is the young spiritwalker of her Anwi (think: Inuit) tribe, who finds herself taken captive by the Ciracusan army and transported from the frozen north to the gaslit city of Nev Anyan. Jarrett is a captain in the Ciracusan army -- and the son of a powerful general -- who returns on leave to the same city after a fearful encounter with Qoyotariz, a warrior of one of the many tribes Ciracusa is battling.

This is a strong, emotionally gripping novel that deserves much more attention than it received when it first came out. Karin Lowachee's prose is powerful and often uniquely styled. Be warned: you won't find much exposition here, and as a result the first few chapters can be a bit confusing as the new vocabulary and names trickle into the story. I actually ended up reading them twice, partly to connect the dots on some world-building details that are implied rather than explained, and partly to enjoy the beautiful prose and Lowachee's often surprising word choices and similes. Some books can be read quickly, and some need to be savored and enjoyed slowly; The Gaslight Dogs is most definitely an example of the latter.

Also impressive is the way Karin Lowachee quickly and deftly adds depth to her characters. Within the first pages of their respective chapters, you'll have a solid idea of who Sjenn and Jarrett are, and as the book progresses, they are placed in emotionally wrenching situations that add layer upon layer to their personalities.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Emily Chen on July 5, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Sjennonirk has lived all her life in the icy tundra north as the ankago (or spiritwalker) of the Aniw people. Her father was the ankago before her, and the Aniw hunt and travel nomadically across the icy landscape. Foreigners from the south (the Kabliw) with their great iron ships and curious, religious priests are not uncommon-however, when Sjenn witnesses the Kabliw unloading boxes upon boxes of guns onto the tundra, she knows something has changed, and not for the better.

After defending herself rfrom being attacked by a drunk Kabliw man, Sjenn is kidnapped from her family and taken on a ship south to Ciracusa, or the land of the Kabliw. During this journey the readers are introduced to Sjenn's incredible ankago power-as a spiritwalker, she is able to manifest a Dog spirit, a powerful being in the form of an animal that cannot be killed and is essentially unstoppable unless called back into Sjenn's unconscious human body.

Sjenn quickly discovers that the Kabliw have ulterior motives for preventing her from returning to her homeland. General Fawle, a high ranking and greatly respected commander of the Kabliw armies, seems to know a great deal about Sjenn's Dog and the ankago ways; in fact, he tells her that unless she can teach his own son, Captain Jarret Fawle, the spiritwalker "magic," she will never return to her tribe and family in the north.

While The Gaslight Dogs is about a fictional world with fictional geography, it's fairly easy to draw comparisons between the Aniw and the real-world Inuit. As well, the Ciracusans are battling tribes of indigenous people and have recently split with the "old country" of Sairland where most of the Ciracusans came from.
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