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The Black Lung Captain: Tales of the Ketty Jay [Paperback]

Chris Wooding BA
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
RRP: 8.99
Price: 6.59 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

9 Jun 2011

Darian Frey is down on his luck. He can barely keep his squabbling crew fed and his rickety aircraft in the sky. Even the simplest robberies seem to go wrong. It's getting so a man can't make a dishonest living any more.

Enter Captain Grist. He's heard about a crashed aircraft laden with the treasures of a lost civilisation, and he needs Frey's help to get it. There's only one problem. The craft is lying in the trackless heart of a remote island, populated by giant beasts and subhuman monsters.

Dangerous, yes. Suicidal, perhaps. Still, Frey's never let common sense get in the way of a fortune before. But there's something other than treasure on board that aircraft. Something that a lot of important people would kill for. And it's going to take all of Frey's considerable skill at lying, cheating and stealing if he wants to get his hands on it . . .

Strap yourself in for another tale of adventure and debauchery, pilots and pirates, golems and daemons, double-crosses and double-double-crosses. The crew of the Ketty Jay are back!

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Frequently Bought Together

The Black Lung Captain: Tales of the Ketty Jay + The Iron Jackal (Tale of the Ketty Jay 3) + Retribution Falls: Tales of the Ketty Jay (Tale of the Ketty Jay 1)
Price For All Three: 18.12

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Product details

  • Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Gollancz; paperback / softback edition (9 Jun 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0575085193
  • ISBN-13: 978-0575085190
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 326,344 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Chris Wooding grew up in a small town in the Midlands, where nothing very interesting happened. So he started to write. His first book contract was signed at age nineteen. By the time he left university he was working as a full time author and he has been writing professionally all his working life. Only in his early 30s, Chris Wooding is the author of eighteen books that have been translated into twenty languages. His books have won the Nestlé Smarties Silver Award and the Bram Stoker Award, among others, and have been shortlisted for the Arthur C. Clarke Award and the CILIP Carnegie Medal. He also writes for TV and film, and his first graphic novel is being published in 2012.

Product Description


This is the second gripping installment of the adventures of the Ketty Jay. More is revealed about the lives of the fascinating crew, relationships progress, and the plot is as imaginative, action-packed and enjoyable as the first. (BOOK TRUST)

Book Description

RETRIBUTION FALLS was fun, fast-paced, action-packed, brilliant stuff - and THE BLACK LUNG CAPTAIN is even better.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Swashbuckling steam-punk fun 9 Aug 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Retribution falls was one of the most entertaining reads I've had in a long while and its sequel, Black Lung Captain, manages to surpass it. While I liked the characters in Falls, the sequel actually made me care about them too. I was really surprised to see what I thought were going to be two long running character arcs concluded in a surprising yet logical way but I guess Chris wants to go in other directions with those characters. The rest of the crew. outside of Frey, Jez and Crake get a stronger outing this time too and each of them has their own little arc or moment to shine (including the cat) - although it would be nice to see Malvery face his demons in the future.
The book has a brisk pace from start to finish and there's never a dull moment with a perfect blend of action, comedy and drama. The aerial combat sequences are also fun and well described giving a sense of chaos and believability. I also like how there is a "sciency" approach to the magic/daemonism in the series which fits well with the steampunk world.
I've no idea where the next adventure of the Ketty Jay will go but if it's anywhere near as fun as the first two I'll be looking forward to it. It's nice to read a modern fantasy that can be edgy and fun at the same time. Too many go down the dark and moody route these days.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
The Black Lung Captain is the second book in the Tales of the Ketty Jay. The first book, Retribution Falls, was one of my favourite reads last year and I was keen, if not a little hesitant, to get back with Frey and his crew for another adventure. When you read a book you enjoy so much it's always a little worrying that you'll pick up another only to find it doesn't meet the expectations you have for it. Fortunately The Black Lung Captain met, and even exceeded, my expectations and proved that Chris Wooding can write a damned fine adventure novel with characters you'll come to love. Again.

As we rejoin the crew of the Ketty Jay it is clear that not all is well. Resorting to stealing from an orphanage, a simple job that even Frey and his crew manage to botch, highlights this fact to a tee. All becomes clear that each member of the crew are dealing with their own problems, from Jez and her hidden secret as part-Mane, to Crake and his unbearable guilt over the death (and subsequent reincarnation as a Golem) of his niece, Bess. Add to the mix an offer by Captain Grist of the Storm Dog to join him in the search of untold treasure on a remote and dangerous island and you've got a stonking story that goes from strength to strength.

Story-wise, The Black Lung Captain is high on double-crossings, action, adventure and a nice amount of intrigue. From the opening chapter where the Ketty Jay try to loot the aforementioned orphanage, and the mess they get in as a result, it's clear that Chris Wooding has brought everything that made Retribution Falls so good back to the table. When the story evolves into the treasure finding mission, then to the inevitable 'searching for the missing item to save lives', it's evident that we're getting a huge story here.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Retribution Falls: Tales of the Ketty Jay (Tales of the Ketty Jay 1) was a brilliant book. It was basically a thriller set on a fantasy world where technology has achieved powered flight but folks still fight with cutlasses. It had the difficult job of introducing a lot of new characters, making them believable whilst at the same time providing an interesting plot. It did this in spades. Pathos, wit and adventure. Great stuff

So how is the next book in the series? The short answer is more of the same however it pretty much demands that you read Retribution Falls first. If you don't then Jez, Crake and Trinica are going to be baffling. The Black Lung Captain has less time devoted to character development and more time spent on action but that is not to say the characterisation has suffered. On the contrary, Jez, Crake and Frey all have a lot of development and there is daemonism galore.

The tale unfolds with Frey chasing a get rich quick scheme. All he has to do is go into the jungle, get Crake to open the door on an old aircraft and split the treasure 50:50. It doesn't work out that way and the chase is on. Manes, daemonism, airborne battles, century nights, awakeners - all are present and correct.

Brilliant fun and if there is another in the series I will buy it on sight.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than Retribution Falls 18 Jan 2011
By simon211175 VINE VOICE
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I loved Retribution Falls: Tales of the Ketty Jay (Tales of the Ketty Jay 1); it was fun, fast, and full of mental characters. I knew I would like this one, and got it as soon as I heard it was out. I was not disappointed.

There is a lot of focus in this book on the characters' back-stories. We spend some time with Crake trying to fix his "mistake", Jex coming to terms with being half-Mane, Harkins fight with Slag, the cat (even some pages devoted to Slag's side of the fight), Pinn and his sweetheart Lisinda, and Frey and Trinica Draken. The development of the characters was well done, and the story moved at a good pace.

I'm looking forward to reading the next in the series, whenever that will be. I would recommend this book, and others by Chris Wooding.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Still a good escape
A bit drawn out, the action is a bit forced. Not to say it does not satisfy a need to read but not as good as the first
Published 13 days ago by US TV Couch Potato
5.0 out of 5 stars Right ripping adventure.
I enjoyed the first book (Retribution Falls) so I thought I'd give this one a go. Didn't disappoint and didn't stop from the outset. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Hooked
I can't praise this book enough and I don't want to ruin anything about it for anyone who may read. However - if you like adventure, roguish characters, demons, pirates and guns -... Read more
Published 4 months ago by onedayrobotswillcry
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Character progression in this book
this book focusses on the characters and their history as well as keeping the action going. The result is character progression and makes you start to care about what happens to... Read more
Published 4 months ago by N W MacKenzie
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't stop at four Chris, please!!!
It's the kind of adventure novel that I thought nobody was writing anymore!
I love the genre mash-up of world war 2, pirates and lord of the rings. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Norbert Hardy
3.0 out of 5 stars This is a fun adventure of a book, but I doubt I'll read it again.
Another Steampunk meets Firefly outing with Captain Frey and the crew of the Ketty-Jay. This time the Manes/Reaver plot seeds planted in Retribution Falls sprout nicely and the... Read more
Published 7 months ago by MR
5.0 out of 5 stars better and better
This is the sec0nd book in the series. The crew of the Ketty Jay are tasked with going to an island to retrieve and unkown object. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Peter Miller
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fantastic follow-up!
I loved this book, from the first page to the last. It is simply tremendous fun and superbly written, it would have me laughing out loud on one page and on the next I would be on... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Tim
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome Sequel
A worthy successor to the previous redemption falls, which gives a bunch more back story to the most interesting characters of the series, with no let-up in pace. READ IT.
Published 12 months ago by Hippocritic
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
zooms along like an out of control steam loco! More fun than a bucketful of squid and a bottle of tequila!!
Published 13 months ago by squidbeak
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