again, great concepts and a bad execution.
the whole setting is great! speampunk horror, parallel history, diseases that turns flesh to clockwork, unbelievable architecture, conceptual gods.
this book has so many good things, it should have been longer.
instead we are given a meager 374 pages that don't explain why things are the way they are, how do they work in the setting. ok, life is like this, things are and things happen, but this is why books can be better than actual life: you can get the whole layout of things fully explained.
anyway, it all works smoothly and you keep waiting for some later explanations about details that will not come (is john scared actually jack the ripper? or mr hyde?). instead by the end it all gets confusing. characters drop out of the plot, you are shown wonderful metaphysical scenes that don't actually fit with what is happening, you never understand what the stack is all about, what the fabled weapon is and how it is actually used.... well, you get what i mean: the book just hurries to a confusing conclusion and you actually can't understand what is happening.
who and what are the gods? how did they get to whitechapel and how did their arrival cause the changes we are witnessing? how are they really defeated? give the book 150 pages more to delve into that and you have a 4 stars on your hands.
solid idea, great concepts, neat plot but a hurried ending to spoil all this.
buy it, definitely. more so if you are a vertigo reader from the early 90's, but prepare to be disappointed and wish for more.