by Andy Frankham-Allen
A damsel in distress. A voyage to the moon. In 1889…
Space 1889 started life as a role-playing game and spawned some audio adventures a few years back. This first in a new series of ebooks, explains the backstory and throws the reader full pelt into a steampunk world, where Thomas Edison invented an aether propeller which allowed mankind to travel to the moon and beyond.
It’s an enjoyable tale, which inevitably has to spend some time establishing the rules of the universe it’s set in, but still manages to keep the reader intrigued. Set partly aboard a Victorian naval vessel (the fact it’s in space is actually to an extent irrelevant), Frankham-Allen doesn’t ram his research down the reader’s throat: we get the information we need as we need it, and as the non-naval hero, Professor Nathanial Stone, discovers it.
With some nice Easter Eggs for fans of genre fiction of the period (yes, the Ghost Light reference was picked up), this is a neat start to the revamped Space 1889 adventures. 7/10
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