Monday, May 7, 2012

Risen by Elizabeth Watasin

Title: Risen (The Dark Victorian, Volume 1)
Author: Elizabeth Watasin
Publication Date: April 14, 2012
Length: 97 pages

Risen takes place in 1880s London. Criminals who have been executed are resurrected, with their memories wiped, to serve Prince Albert's Secret Commission in protecting London from supernatural threats. Jim Dastard is a mentor to newly resurrected agents, and is a skull. Artifice (Art) is Dastard's newest partner, and she's an artificial ghost (she can be solid or not-solid as she chooses). In this first installment of the Dark Victorian series, Jim and Art must track down a reanimationist, who is resurrecting dead children and causing them to seek revenge on people that they blame for their early deaths.

I know, it sounds weird. I must admit, I had my doubts about the animated skull and the artificial ghost. But they are delightful. Art becomes quite a fleshed out (no pun intended) character, as she tries to figure out what kind of person she was like in her past life, and deals with being a Quaker who also seems to have some violent tendencies. And Jim Dastard is a very witty talking skull.

Weirdly enough, I kept thinking that Jim shouldn't be able to do some of the things he could do. I mean, I could accept that he was a talking skull, but every time he said "hmm" I was like "how can you make that sound with no lips?!". Yeah, I'm strange like that. :)

I have no problem recommending this one, especially to fans of steampunk and other Victorian-era genres. I look forward to the next book in the series!

Full disclosure: I received a free copy of this ebook from the author.

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