Set in late 1800s London, this steampunk adventure follows Claire Trevelyan. Claire’s dad is some minor nobility and inventor. In fact, he puts the family fortune into the development of combustion engine. Sadly, that doesn’t turn out well, and Claire is soon left penniless and on her own.
Have you heard the phrase, ‘Throw me to the wolves and I’ll return leading the pack’? Yeah, that is the kind of awesomeness Claire embodies. She was always a bit of a chemistry and engineering nerd, blowing stuff up in the family laboratory. But she also had all her comforts met, food on her plate, servants, etc. When her father lost the estate and Claire was forced out on her own, that is when her inner strength shows. I really enjoyed this character.
Claire falls in with a group of young street ruffians. A sort of agreement is met between the two parties. Claire will provide some education (on how t behave in society but also how to make small flash-bangs) and the street urchins will give her a safe place to build a lab and sleep. All sorts of entertaining misunderstandings and embarrassing situations arise as Claire bumps into old associates with her new friends in tow.
This book was highly entertaining for the steampunk aspect, Claire’s cutting remarks, the street urchins pondering over a lady scientist, and the challenges of going against London society. There’s plenty here for the reader to enjoy. I am very glad that there are several more books in this series.
The Narration: Fiona Hardingham was an excellent choice for the voice of Claire. She does a great job at both the high society London accent and the street urchin accent. She had a range of voices for both males and females.