The Horror Honeys: Is Tonight a Good Night for Love or for Revenge?

Is Tonight a Good Night for Love or for Revenge?

I must admit, while I am not the biggest fan of any subculture that involves dressing up and pretending to live in an entirely different universe (seriously... Bronies scare the shit out of me), I have always been fascinated by the steampunk community. There is something so elegant and intriguing about the combination of American Western culture, steam-powered machinery, burlesque clothing, and a world where people still use typewriters but aren't obnoxious fixie-riding hipsters. Thus, when I began reading  author Jack Wallen's newest novel, Klockwerk Kabaret, I was more than ready to fall in love with whatever the Zombie King was going to throw my way. And here is the best part Poppets: I wasn't remotely disappointed.

I will only give you a brief summary of Klockwerk's details, as I am generally loathe to over-share the plot of books I've loved. Our heroes are Nathan Gage, owner of the titular Kabaret, and Olivia Nightingale, Nathan's wife and the star of the Kabaret's performances. By night the duo owns the most popular hotspot in all of Mainspring, but by later at night, they are a crime-fighting pair of vigilantes who keep the streets clean of villainous steamers (a brand of steam-powered windup being with nothing but crime on their mind.) However, when a formerly exiled tinker named Hieronymus Ebauche decides to seek revenge on Mainspring, even Nathan and Olivia may not be clever enough to combat his army of demons.

Author Jack Wallen
Even if you are a complete novice to the world of steampunk, you will be utterly enraptured by the world that Wallen creates in Klockwerk. His writing style and flare for language is so adept, that you quickly find yourself lost within the city limits of Mainspring and the walls of the Kabaret. You can almost hear Olivia singing and easily visualize the Kabaret's Klockwerk Dolls, women made of machinery but so beautiful they bewitch just the same. Wallen's ability to craft a chapter, framing each from a different character's point of view, made it impossible to put Klockwerk Kabaret down.

In the realm of science fiction literature, Klockwerk genuinely does stand up with some of the best that I've read. The tinkering of the clockmakers is fascinating, the thrills of the battles between Mainspring and Ebauche's land of The Keep of Keys draw to mind the work of H.G. Wells, and the love between Nathan and Olivia rivals any mainstream romance novel you find at your local bookstore. Truly, I fancy myself a very picky reader, but I enjoyed every page of Jack Wallen's Klockwerk Kabaret. And when the Revenge Honey takes time from her slicing and dicing to read a novel, you know that shit has to be solid.

Stabby Points: 4 1/2 out of 5