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Lady of Devices: A Steampunk Adventure Novel: Magnificent Devices, Book 1 | [Shelley Adina]

Lady of Devices: A Steampunk Adventure Novel: Magnificent Devices, Book 1

At 17, Claire Trevelyan, daughter of Viscount St. Ives, was expected to do nothing more than pour an elegant cup of tea, sew a fine seam, and catch a rich husband. Unfortunately, Claire's talents lie not in the ballroom, but in the chemistry lab, where things have a regrettable habit of blowing up. When her father gambles the estate on the combustion engine and loses, Claire finds herself down and out on the mean streets of London. But being a young woman of resources and intellect, she turns fortune on its head. It's not long before a new leader rises in the underworld, known only as the Lady of Devices...
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Publisher's Summary

London, 1889: Victoria is Queen. Charles Darwin's son is Prime Minister. And steam is the power that runs the world.

At 17, Claire Trevelyan, daughter of Viscount St. Ives, was expected to do nothing more than pour an elegant cup of tea, sew a fine seam, and catch a rich husband. Unfortunately, Claire's talents lie not in the ballroom, but in the chemistry lab, where things have a regrettable habit of blowing up. When her father gambles the estate on the combustion engine and loses, Claire finds herself down and out on the mean streets of London. But being a young woman of resources and intellect, she turns fortune on its head. It's not long before a new leader rises in the underworld, known only as the Lady of Devices...

When she meets Andrew Malvern, a member of the Royal Society of Engineers, she realizes her talents may encompass more than the invention of explosive devices. They may help her realize her dreams and his...if they can both stay alive long enough to see that sometimes the closest friendships can trigger the greatest betrayals....

©2011 Shelley Adina (P)2013 Shelley Adina

What Members Say

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  •  
    Kitty Lagorio Western Pennsylvania 03-16-14
    Kitty Lagorio Western Pennsylvania 03-16-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
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    20
    4
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    Story
    "Was it really just one book divided into four?"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    A delightful story to listen to. The main character was very determined, very likable. The supporting characters were also well developed and became quite alive (except the mother seemed a bit too exaggerated). I'd recommend this, however, my one reservation is, I think that it was deliberately divided into four for sales. Where this book ended seemed more an end of Act I, than a complete end to a novel.If it was done for sales, well, so be it, but a fully fleshed out book costing a bit more would've most likely earned five stars from me.
    The author has a delightful imagination and she's created a unique world. But Book One just ended, no resolution, too many issues left hanging. Since Harry Potter's seven books it's become a trend to do this, but in this case, The Lady of Devices would've been best served by being put in one single book. Just my opinon.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Lady of Devices: A Steampunk Adventure Novel?

    I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the "moppets" and how they were transformed.
    All throughout, the author did a fine job "inventing" machines and giving just enough description so they could be imagined.


    What does Fiona Hardingham bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Her voice is smooth, and so very easy to listen to. The English accent makes the listener absolutely feel as if they are transported to Victorian England. She did a wonderful reading and I've written her name down to find more books.


    Any additional comments?

    I really do wish that Audible would combine all of the books in this series into one. It makes the purchasing easier and allows for the story to continue without interruption.

    13 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K. Holt 02-18-14
    K. Holt 02-18-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Absolutely spectacular!"

    LADY OF DEVICES thoroughly captivated me. There's something truly other-worldly yet so completely natural about this blend of Victorian England (with all its social rules) and Steampunk alternative history. I found myself loathe to put down this book, as the plot twists and turns made it a definite page-turner. I found the plot to make perfect sense as the twists happened (foreshadowed beautifully)...but I never saw them coming. The secondary characters added so much charm and wit to the read, and I loved their contributions. Each one was completely purposeful.

    I find myself eager to read the second book in the series and delve back into this wold Shelley Adina has created.

    This first book in the series did a splendid job setting up the story world, introducing characters, allowing us to see Claire Trevelyan's personality and character. Claire was not the standard 'YA' heroine (thank you, Ms. Adina!). Claire may be barely out of the schoolroom (age 17), yet she is independent, competent, determined, resourceful, KIND, and more powerful than she realized. I found her to be immensely sympathetic and interesting. While this might technically be labeled a Coming of Age tale, it's by far the BEST one I've ever read. I'm pleased to find I've discovered this series late enough that there are MANY books available in the series...so there's no waiting for me-- they're ripe and ready for picking and savoring.

    I can't compliment the narrator/voice actress enough. Fiona Hardingham was well-suited to the task; her dialects (so many!) were extraordinarily good. Whether a Lady, a street urchin, an American 'colonist', male or female, of any and every age, each and every voice was consistent with itself and WOWED me! I'll definitely try other books Ms. Hardingham has narrated. Kudos to both the author and the narrator.

    Highly recommended to fans of historical novels (particularly Victorian England) and Steampunk.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lisa 05-13-14
    Lisa 05-13-14 Member Since 2012

    Goesturbo

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Simply Delightful and engaging!"

    An English Lady with a mind and will of her own finds herself destitute. Her admirable character and huge heart make this a must listen to novel... I promise you WILL be hooked! Can't wait to see what further adventures lie in store for the Lady of Devices!

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James D Kempton Topeka, Kansas United States 04-05-14
    James D Kempton Topeka, Kansas United States 04-05-14 Member Since 2012

    Working towards retirement hopefully. I enjoy sci fi, horror, steampunk and some ya for good luck.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Serious good fun listen"
    What did you like best about this story?

    I enjoyed the depth and detail of the world. Sometimes too much information is like stuffing you get bloated. Not here the detail brought it alive for me helped me to imagine the world and setting.


    What does Fiona Hardingham bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Narrator's always make or break a audio book for me. This narrator just nailed the voices and time period. Well at least how I imagine the period. Her accent and voices for the children are awesome.


    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gayle 07-31-13
    Gayle 07-31-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Charming!"

    What a fun, light story! I completely enjoyed this Steampunk adventure! The cast of characters was very interesting and I was quickly caught up in the story. Fiona Hardingham did an outstanding job as narrator. I hope to see more of this series on Audible soon!

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris Alameda, CA, United States 06-07-14
    Chris Alameda, CA, United States 06-07-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Interesting story but full of Americanisms"

    The story is set in London and is close enough considering Steam Punk is supposed to be slightly out of our current universe. The representation of the young ladies is OK but a bit hackneyed. It is very much an outsider's view of society girls and a typically idealized view of 'polite' girls.

    The story does not go the way that it looks like it will, and it isn't surprising that a bright woman sometimes does stupid things. People are far too simplistically offended, we are occasionally treated to adults taking permanent dislike to children based on a single sentence. A bit too pat.

    On the one hand the story is fantastic, as in unbelievable. But on the other it isn't quite supposed to be real Victorian society, so the differences are forgivable.

    In the end the story is enjoyable but too short, half a book.

    Within a few minutes of the start we hit the first Americanism and they come in every few minutes from then on. "she fit in"? The poor reader must have choked on this. She fits or she fitted. In Victorian England they may have used steam power but they knew their language. England does not have Sidewalks. Nor shingle roofs, even cheap homes had slate or stone roofs. Pocket book? Really> I have never heard that term in English English, but I am not certain. Britain did not grow maize, what Americans call corn. Corn in Britain meant wheat, cornfields were yellow dry grass. Every few minutes another Americanism. There are various "brit fic" communities, or the Little Details community on Livejournal that would be able to provide direction. The Americanisms really spoiled the effect and pushed my assessment to Fan Fic rather than serious and professional writing.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K. Eckert 11-13-14
    K. Eckert 11-13-14 Member Since 2004

    Devourer of all books fantasy

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fun Victoiran Steampunk Novel!"

    This is the first book in the Magnificent Devices series. Currently there are at least eight book planned for this series, with the eighth one releasing later in 2014. I really enjoyed this steampunk young adult read set in Victorian London.

    I listened to this on audiobook and the audiobook was very very well done. I highly recommend this on audiobook.

    Claire Trevelyan is the daughter of a Viscount and her mother is trying her best to get her married off to a fine gentleman. However Claire would rather go to University and spend time talking to Wits about steam engines. Disaster strikes when Claire’s father goes bankrupt and dies. Claire’s mother and brother are forced to flee the city to escape angry investors, while Claire is left to deal with tying things up in the city. Claire sees this as an opportunity to take control of her own life.

    There are a ton of interesting steampunk elements in this novel that I really enjoyed. This is a story that isn’t all that original; a young woman prefers science/knowledge over marriage and decides to go her own way...but it is the type of story I never tire of reading.

    Claire is a wonderful balance of a proper lady and a young woman who wants to make her own way. She is at times pretty and soft, but also extremely determined, smart and stubborn. She’s one of my favorite types of heroines to read about. I love how she makes a family for herself and finds a place to call home even in the worst of situations.

    This book mainly follows Claire as she deals with the aftermath of her family disaster and loss of place in society and starts to find her own way in life. I loved the steampunk elements, found Claire’s story to be very engaging, and really enjoyed the story overall.

    There is a somewhat complicated love interest here. A gentleman who was interested in Lady Claire ends up being the same man who is financing the research of Andrew Malvern, a young inventor who wants to hire Claire as his secretary. It makes for a bit of a love triangle of sorts, although I will say the story definitely isn’t driven by romance there is some romance subtly woven in.

    The story ties up nicely, but there are definitely more elements of the story that still need to be resolved.

    Overall I really enjoyed this story and thought it was a very fun read. It is not a story that is all that creative, but it is fun and well done. If you enjoy steampunk novels I definitely recommend this book. The story is bit of a Pride and Prejudice meets steampunk kind of read. I definitely plan on listening to more audio books in the Magnificent Devices series!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    cynthia 09-22-14
    cynthia 09-22-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ratings
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    33
    5
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    "Most fun I've had in a book in a long time!"
    What did you love best about Lady of Devices: A Steampunk Adventure Novel?

    The Story line was entertaining, fun and solid.
    What could be better than helping each other out, albeit with a little "turbulence" involved.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The street urchins of course- and Rosey the chicken was fun too.


    Which character – as performed by Fiona Hardingham – was your favorite?

    Fiona did a great job on all the characters. I can't wait for her to narrate the next two books.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When the girls finally started to trust "Lady" (Claire).


    Any additional comments?

    I haven't been this excited to recommend a book (books) in a long time.
    They were a lot of fun and a great listen too!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emanuel Zion, IL, United States 09-12-14
    Emanuel Zion, IL, United States 09-12-14 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    65
    ratings
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    119
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    6
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    "Good, very good."

    This was my first Steampunk book. I really enjoyed it. I dont believe I heard any profanity. FIona is a very good narrator. Love her voice. I recommend this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Miachi MD 08-17-14
    Miachi MD 08-17-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    39
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    "Entertaining, but maybe not worth a credit..."

    I bought this during a $4 sale, and I'm happy with my purchase. First, this is a YOUNG ADULT novel (I didn't see this mentioned anywhere except another review). All the same, it's an entertaining 5 hours. The main character wasn't particularly unique (I recently listened to Alexia Tarabotti), but the world was interesting and the characters made even livelier by Hardingham's narration. Her character voices were all very good, and my only complaint is the strange breaks... in the middle... of sentences. I got used to it after a little bit, and before I knew it, the book was finished. I'll probably follow up with the rest of the series if I can likewise find them for $4. They would be good for passing time during long drives with the whole family.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • davinder
    London, United Kingdom
    6/8/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "simply brilliant"

    A great introduction to a new series. One of the best things I have read in the last 10 years. Well worth a look (or a listen!). The production suits the glorious prose perfectly. Well done to all involved and more more more please!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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