Eager reader of history, mystery, classics, biographies, steampunk, lit fic, science, scifi, and etc. My reviews are mostly positive--I rarely finish or write about books I don't enjoy. My TBR is too high for that.
Steampunk blends with Sherlock Holmes and a little magic in the form of nature devas or highly opinionated elemental spirits to make this lush with detail 500+ page book a rich world to get lost in. The story has multiple points of view but the main focus is Evelina Cooper, niece to Sherlock and a young lady with a decidedly mixed background and skill set. Her mother was a Holmes giving her some status in society, but her father’s family were circus people and though she has a proper veneer of discretion and decorum the circus is where Evelina grew up.
From her various family members Evelina has inherited a touch of magic which allows her to interact with some of the nature devas, a way with machinery which allows her to create delicate clockwork devices, and a knack for logical reasoning which allows her to follow, albeit imperfectly, in her famous uncle’s footsteps when a servant is murdered at Hillard House, home of her best friend Imogen. Evelina has been a guest of Imogen’s family since the girls graduated from school and both are preparing to come out in society, but the implications of the crime may have disastrous far reaching consequences for everyone in the household. Further complicating things, Imogen’s father is challenging the steam barons, colorful industrial tyrants who supply the city’s energy and are battling for power at the expense of the citizens.
A Study in Silks is the first of a three part series, each volume of which is being released little more than a month apart--a happy circumstance for those like me who have trouble remembering salient plot points when there are years between books. I've already started number 2.