by Dan Vyleta
Narrator: Allan Corduner
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Release date: May 2016
Genre: Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Victorian England
Hardback: 448 pages
"Thomas, Thomas! Wake up!"
The first thing he does upon waking is to search his nightshirt, his bedding for soiling. He does this quickly, mechanically, still more than half asleep: runs a palm over his skin feeling for the telltale grit of Soot.
Welcome to a Victorian England unlike any other you have experienced before. Here, wicked thoughts (both harmless and hate-filled) appear in the air as telltale wisps of Smoke.
Young Thomas Argyle, a son of aristocracy, has been sent to an elite boarding school. Here he will be purged of Wickedness, for the wealthy do not Smoke. When he resists a sadistic headboy's temptations to Smoke, a much larger struggle beyond the school walls is revealed. Shortly thereafter, on a trip to London, Thomas and his best friend witness events that make them begin to question everything they have been taught about Smoke.
And thus the adventure begins... You will travel by coach to a grand estate where secrets lurk in attic rooms and hidden laboratories; where young love blossoms; and where a tumultuous relationship between a mother and her children is the crucible in which powerful passions are kindled, and dangerous deeds must be snuffed out in a desperate race against time.
The focus in this story revolved around uncovering the mystery of the title, smoke. Set in a gritty Victorian England along with stuffy boarding school scenes, the colorful characters in this story tell the tale from their perspectives.
The world building rather than the mystery in this story captured my attention most.
I prefer this cover...
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