A Glorious Romp Through Re-Imagined London

By Lilith Saintcrow
Orbit, 308 pages, $13.99

Emma Bannon is a Prime sorceress and employed by Queen Victoria to help protect the realm.  Currently, that means that Emma is in pursuit of the person or persons behind the recent murders of mentaths around the country. Her investigation leads her to Archibald Clare, the last remaining unregistered mentath and one who is nearly bored out of his mind.  Cautiously trusting, Emma allows Clare to help in her investigations, and what they discover could mean disaster for both them and for Britannia herself.

The Iron Wyrm Affair is a new novel by author Lilith Saintcrow and it is a delightfully fun and intriguing book. Combining historical fiction with science fiction and fantasy, she creates a re-imagined Britain, one where magic and science abound both for good and evil. The main characters jump off the page, and Emma and Clare are hilarious in their own ways: Emma in her unladylike language, and Clare in his confusion over illogical things like feelings. The book nicely develops their working relationship and growing respect for each other. If you like steampunk fiction or just a really good fantasy book, do not miss this one!

Reviewed by Barbara Cothern