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on 4 March 2012
Well 5 books on from 'Court of the Air' I am still coming back for more!

Call it new weird, call it Steampunk and call it entertainment at the outer limits!

Creatures from the deep, another war, vampires, U-boats, spies, imposters and police men. Jethro Daunt and his metalic protector Boxiron make a very welcome return here and find themselves entangled in all the above and so much more. Our old mate Blacky is pulled out of his sick bed for one more outing and of course curses his luck throughout every minute of it!

Hunt gives us his usual franetic, action packed thriller with also as usual a hatful of twists in the plot. Maybe I occassionally would like him to slim down the number of extras on set and let us dwell more on some of the colour characters but he does like a big finish and he does it so well!

In summary this book is architypal Hunt doing what he does probably better than anyone else in this genre right now. If you have enjoyed his other works you should find much to enjoy here.
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on 28 April 2013
Another winner from Stephen Hunt, new and well loved characters are taken on new adventures that maintain the excellent standard that began with The Court of the Air. Less of a Steampunk influence than previous titles but still a thoroughly enjoyable read.
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on 20 June 2013
I have read all the Jackelian series and found then to be very addictive and entertaining but sometimes exasperating. Is it me or are they becoming a bit 'samey'? Derring band of heroes plus one innocent in outrageous situations against ancient danger sound familiar? It should do it is the plot of all of them.

With such a rich back story I just hope if any more a written that we can get a bit more depth in what is a wonderful universe. Also for all its faults Jackelian society seems to rebuild itself pretty sharpish every time the latest inevitable ancient threat comes over the border and destroys Middlesteel. Maybe the town planners should see the next conflaguration as an opportunity to do a bit of good for the city!
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This is the sixth and final volume (at least for now) in Hunt's Jackelian series, which began with The Court of the Air and he goes out in style - I'd rate this the best of the lot, except perhaps for the previous book, Jack Cloudie. It's organically part of the sequence and if you haven't read any of the others you will gain by reading them first - but there's enough background to read it standalone if you wish

Again, the Kingdom of Jackals is menaced by exiled Royalist plots and we're introduced to Dick Tull, agent of the State Protection Board, a footsoldier deployed to stop them. But there are wheels within wheels in the Royalist community - and indeed, cogs and axles beyond those (sorry, but the future-steampunk aesthetic of Hunt's writing is rather catching). Something deeper, and worse, than a few sad exiles is gathering its forces to menace not only Jackals but the world itself (readers of Hunt's earlier books may see a recurrent theme from a couple of the earlier volumes here).

Alongside Tull in opposing this threat are Charlotte Shades, a glamorous stage hypnotist, and several old friends from previous volumes including the self-pitying ex rebel, ex pirate and submarinist Commodore Black and Jethro Daunt, a former atheist priest who was defrocked because he began believing in gods. This book has everything - plenty of high adventure, courage, betrayal, hopeless situations turned around, a secret base inside an island volcano - and a note of sadness as the story ends.

I really hope that Hunt returns to this world soon.
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If you love the hiss of steam, the turning of cogs and the worlds of imagination that stemmed from the likes of Verne, then you really have to read Stephen Hunt's tales that take you from the land to the sea and beneath. Full of quirky twists, dark deeds and political machinations, this tale is one of high adventure and explored dangers as ancient worlds collide with modern threats as threads previously lost to history are revealed.

All in a story that captures the reader firmly in its steam-powered hand, keeping you glued to the last page as history is made, throw into the mix the wonderful inventiveness of Stephen Hunt that first came to light in the Crown and the Dragon and all in, a great time is had by all.
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on 14 January 2014
Rattling good yarn from start to finish. Probably the best yet from Stephen Hunt. I have read and enjoyed every book this man has written - what an imagination.
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on 16 December 2013
I bought this book as a Christmas present. I do not know what it is about, but I am sure he will like it,
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on 26 August 2014
Excellent.
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