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The Earl and the Artificer (The Ingenious Mechanical Devices Book 3) Kindle Edition
|Length: 302 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Told within a richly described Victorian setting, this story is wonderfully well-layered. On one hand, there are beautifully handled scenes from a budding marriage that is not without complications. The emotional dimensions here are beautifully handled, and I would recommend the book for those aspects alone! But The Earl and the Artificer is also a delightfully suspenseful read. Thieves, murderers, and intrigue-makers all tread the streets in Folkesbury; the trouble for Eilian and Hadley is to figure out who is who.
I thoroughly enjoyed this read and its well-crafted cast of characters, whom I'm hoping to see more of in future books from Kara Jorgensen!
The first time I read one of Jorgensen’s Ingenious Mechanical Devices novels, The Winter Garden, my area was under a tornado warning. The TV was on in the background spouting alerts and I started reading on my iPad to keep my mind off the storm. The fact that it held my attention speaks volumes.
Jorgensen’s new novel, The Earl and the Artificer, is book three in her Ingenious Mechanical Devices series, but works just as well as a stand-alone novel. The novel continues the story of the two main characters, Eilian and Hadley, from Earl of Brass. The characters have married and moved on with their lives as the new Earl and Countess of Dorset, but their personalities remain on track.
Potential Minor Spoilers
It is not too big of a spoiler to tell you that the first chapter opens with Hadley elbow-deep in steamer engine innards, covered in grease, trying to fix their burned-out vehicle:
Leaning into the front of the cab, she brought her face close to the boiler as the heat of the kettle stung her cheeks. The metal coils of the heating element had melted into a blackened cake that smelled of burnt hair. Using the sides of the hood for leverage, she pivoted back until her satin boots met the road’s white gravel. Staring down at her cream dress, already streaked with soot and grease, she sighed and wiped her hands across it before smoothing a lock of henna hair behind her ear.
Of course her new white dress becomes filthy and in this state she has to meet their new neighbors and their cousin, Randall Nash, who seems to judge her appearance rather harshly.
Both Eilian and Hadley are having a hard time adjusting to so many changes in their lives, and part of the novel revolves around the new dimensions in their relationship as husband and wife and, of course, setting up their household in a Gothic-style mansion reminiscent of the BBC’s Downton Abbey. Add to this a mixture of steampunk devices and somewhat magical-seeming elements that are not simply thrown-in for effect but are actually integral to the story.
There is a treasure at Brasshurst Hall hidden in the ruins, but to discover it Eilian and Hadley have to brave physical threats and overcome the emotional debris of his tragic family history. Suspense builds as the story continues, as does the sense of impeding danger. Without giving away too much, I will just say that the resolution will not be something most readers will expect, but it fits perfectly with the story world and the characters.
I recommend The Earl and the Artificer for anyone who enjoys a Victorian-style steampunk novel filled with intriguing characters, mystery, suspense, and danger.
not eventually kill her love. Consummation need not be graphic--perhaps implied at a picnic or among Roman ruins? 4 Stars. Elle Greene
The Earl and the Artificer features the main male and female characters from Kara Jorgensen's first book The Earl of Brass, which I absolutely loved. In this book, newlyweds Eilian and Hadley Sorrell head to Brasshurst Hall to claim Eilian's inheritance. The author realistically portrays the struggles that the couple encounters as newlyweds in addition to taking on the responsibilities of being a newly appointed earl and countess. As Hadley spends her days sprucing up the manor house and trying to fit in to a drastically different part of society from her former life as an artificer, Eilian unravels his family's mysterious past and deals with uninvited guests in his home. On top of everything else, the couple gets pulled into a murder mystery. One of the things I really enjoy about reading books by Ms. Jorgensen is her breadth of creativity - all three of the first books of this series focus on a different scientific/technological theme. Without giving too much away, this one features botany. My only negative thing I have to say is that I felt this one dragged a little bit compared to the others. It definitely won't prevent me from continuing to read this series.
Most recent customer reviews
Hadley and Eillian newly married set off to Brasshurst.Read more
Jorgensen’s bread and butter is top-notch and complex characters. They’re the main reason why I love the series to begin with.Read more
I first want to say that I suck at reviews.Read more