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Lady of Devices (Magnificent Devices #1)

3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  3,749 ratings  ·  467 reviews
London, 1889. Claire Trevelyan 17 should be a lady, but prefers to invent explosive devices. When her father Viscount St Ives loses the estate, a new leader rises in London underworld, the Lady of Devices. She wants to work in the lab of Andrew Malvern, member of the Royal Society of Engineers. Her devices may help realize their dreams, if they can stay alive long enough. ...more
Paperback, inc preview #2 Her Own Devices, 200 pages
Published May 31st 2011 by Moonshell (first published May 2011)
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Lady of Devices is the first pure Steampunk I've ventured into. I've read some that were also historical fantasy or paranormal, but I was afraid I wouldn't like the scientific aspects of steam and gadgets on their own quite as much. But I'm really loving this series. It's a lot of fun, and the technology isn't dry at all. You mainly just have to be willing to suspend disbelief about this alternate Victorian world because Claire's escapades are so outlandish. She's a fantastic heroine, full of sp ...more
I read a whole book in one day. Hooray. I almost feel like one of the giants of GR (you know who you are).

This was not at all bad. The only thing that irked me was how Clare, a smart young woman not yet wholly in possession of her own life, transforms when she takes up with the East End gang, into a prim and governessy figure. True, she does, half jokingly, describe herself as the governess of the children who constitute the gang; but it's the change in her manner of speaking and behaving that i
BK Blue
Okay. So....

1. Lord James is an ass, and if I read more into this series and the two become romantic, I'm going to be pissed. Not to mention, the dude has a mustache, if I read correctly. I just can't take mustaches seriously.

2. As others have stated, she can't afford to ride a high horse when she is in a pot-calling-the-kettle-black kind of situation. Who is she to judge the kids on picking pockets considering her new reputation as an underground arms dealer, not to mention what happened along
Lady Claire has finally graduated finishing school. Despite her best efforts, none of her professors would teach her engineering, and her parents refuse to allow her to attend college. Claire tries to figure out how to reconcile her society's expectations with her own dreams, but the farthest she manages to go is to invite a Wit to her graduation party. Then her comfortable life is shattered, and Claire goes from rebelling against her family to just trying to keep herself together. And at this p ...more
Jacob Proffitt
This was a fantastic find. I never know if what comes across as “young adult” in my head actually qualifies as young adult for anyone else. This book feels like it's solidly young adult, though, with a young protagonist, short page-count, and, uh, simplified solutions to some of the protagonist's bumpy road. Claire is 17 and newly graduated from a finishing school for upper-class girls. It isn't long after graduation, though, that her life is fundamentally altered from her expectations and she f ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Pitch-perfect pulp. And I mean that as the highest form of compliment. (This review will stand for the first three books, taken together in one big gulp, which is how I read them.)

So often, authors feel the need to add stuff to steampunk. (I'm looking at you Kate Locke). Or they take the differences too far and create a world that is too alien to feel Victorian (Cherie Priest). But really, it's lovely as it is and a good writer can do so much with the setting. And Ms. Adina does. All three books
This book was recommended to me so I was incredibly disappointed. After reading the blurb, I was nervous about the science - if internal combustion engines fail, what reason will the author give? None, as it turns out it.

But that doesn't mean there wasn't plenty of other really bad science. Lets start with the exploding herbs. Then we'll look at steam engines that are the power that moves society, but no one seems to have realized that you can burn things besides coal to make steam. Steam cars c
Lady Claire is a smart, headstrong woman who wants nothing to do with the life she's had chosen for her. Instead of being married she would rather go to college and learn more about the power of steam and chemistry. Her formidable mother however, will hear nothing of her plans, and suffocates Claire under her lessons on manners and propriety. After a horrible accident changes Claire's fortune, it seems the path has opened up for her to be free at last. With her new freedom, Claire collects a ban ...more
The Pen Punks
This book contains two types of stories I love—the fish out of water story, and the rich-kid-turned-ass-kicking-lord-of-the-underground story. I know, that last bit was a little long, but that’s exactly what happens to Lady Claire in this fun steampunk romp through Victorian London. All of our favorite steampunk trappings are there—airships, steam trains, lightning guns (oh yeah, dude, LIGHTNING GUNS)—but the heart of the story is Claire’s transformation from the viscount’s daughter who wants m ...more
Meg Mims
After her deft handling of the All About Me YA series, Shelley Adina steams off in a new direction with Lady of Devices. Resourceful Claire Trevelyan, at 17, is poised to enter society until a family tragedy pushes her into the dregs of London’s Whitechapel underworld. Adina keeps the reader’s interest with a sympathetic heroine, a smashing story and incredibly rich details of both true Victorian London and the imagined steam-punk world. You won’t regret sticking with this series!
A very entertaining, if highly unrealistic, piece of fluff. Claire's mother is determined that Claire will become a properly accomplished young lady, prior to making a good marriage. Claire is more interesting in chemistry and scholarship. Then the family loses all its money, and Claire's life becomes a lot more complicated.

Although I liked Claire, and enjoyed her story, I was ultimately disappointed because this isn't a book. It's half of one. All along, events seem to be leading up to...well,
This book reminds me much of a regency romance where the heroine, strong in her brain, does not want to make a good marriage just to breed heirs. She wants to do something with her life and be something more than society allows. Her father is usually absent trying to make a new combustion engine the new big thing. His daughter who is skilled in science knows the folly of such an adventure at this time and tries to sway his opinion back toward the stable energy of steam. After her father's folly ...more
Laura Martinelli
I tend to think that steampunk is a genre at the crossroads at the moment. It’s trendy enough that more books and articles and human interest stories are being written about it, but it hasn’t quite broken through to being mainstream. And much like any genre that’s becoming popular, everyone’s jumping on the bandwagon to try to rake in the cash. I found Lady of Devices as I was browsing through the “If You Liked X, Try Y!” suggestions. (Which is a very precarious task, I’ve found.) I did really l ...more
Oct 22, 2013 Ian rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of steampunk
Coming from a life of privilege, little is expected of Claire except that she marry well and be a good wife. But her greatest desire is to attend college and become an engineer. Then after a failed business venture her father commits suicide, she loses her life of privilege and finds herself on the street. She must rely on her wit and her education to survive and make something of herself.

Lady of Devices occasionally felt a bit like a video game, with Claire acquiring skills and then moving on t
This was the perfect way to pass time yesterday - a Bank Holiday Monday here when I was feeling tired and achy and very unmotivated to do much more than try to juggle arm elevation and iPad balancing, and there were moments even that seemed like a lot of effort. There was plenty to like, with a smart heroine who, for the most part, rose admirably to her grim new situation, and whose ambition was to get to university, with some amusing scenes with the street rat gang she ends up taking responsibi ...more
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
Sharon Stevenson
'Lady of Devices' is the story of a young woman, Claire, as she loses the life she knows and decides she must find a way to get the life she wants.

I downloaded this when I saw it was on free offer as I'd never tried reading something in the steampunk genre before, and when I started reading this I'll admit I wasn't too sure that I was going to enjoy it. I prefer modern settings in general so I found it quite hard to get into this to begin with. It took until about 40% in to really hook me which
Excellent, though only 3.5 stars.

The story is a becoming-typical Jane Austen-Jules Verne mash up but the story telling is excellent. A slow start but kept the reader engaged throughout.

A very good read.
Emanuel Grigoras
I enjoyed it immensely. I'm waiting for all the other parts to appear so I can read everything at once.
I can't stand the pressure of not reading the entire series.
This is mandatory binge-reading.
What a lively, fun read!

All the hallmarks of Steampunk, with enough murder and mayhem to keep the "sweetness factor" to a minimum..

Complete review to follow. Highly recommended.
Bought this because it was cheap. Sadly, it remained so.
Ruby  Tombstone [Uncensored or Else]
I'm going to preface my review by saying that I don't read a lot of YA, so I don't really have much of a benchmark here. From what little I have read though, there is much better fiction for young readers out there than this. That said, once I got to the 70% mark, and the set-up was finally complete, I did enjoy the adventure and the witty faux-Victorian dialogue.

What I found it difficult to get past were the two-dimensional characters and the lack of emotional response by the sheltered sixteen
I loved the writing style! It was wonderfully descriptive and the dialogue fit the time period. It was nice to see how this London was seemingly an offshoot of our timeline - what would happen if the use of petroleum never became dominant in society.
At times it did mark of regency romance, especially with the nod towards Pride & Prejudice's opening line near the beginning. But for the most part, thankfully, Claire's mind was far from pompous society and focused on things that truly matter.
Joyce Baker
Joyce Baker
Science fiction/Steampunk

Claire Trevelyan is born into high society but she soon becomes a poor commoner. Her father loses the family fortune and he commits suicide. Her mother and her brother flee to Cornwell while she stayed behind to find work. Riots break out in Hyde Park and Claire has to flee quickly. She makes one wrong turn and she is robbed of everything. Determined to get her things back, she used chemicals to bust the thieves out only to discover they are children.

In an at
The Shutterbug
I've been in a steampunk kind of mood lately. It was a genre I had never read before until my introduction to Gail Carriger's The Parasol Protectorate series which I ended up loving. PP was a combination of steampunk and paranormal, the later being the major genre of the stories. I wanted something different, something that focused solely on the steampunk. So when I was looking through Goodreads I came upon the Lady of Devices: something that was said to be of interest to lovers of Gail Carriger ...more
(This review originally published at

So, free books are awesome. Free steampunk books that are actually well-written and entertaining are even better. This 200 page novel is available free for the Kindle on Amazon.

The heroine of this book is an upper-class young lady named Claire Trevelyn about to graduate from finishing school. She dreams of going to university to become an engineer, but her traditional family won't hear of it, of course. The story is set in a Victo
steampunk is a genre I am still trying to get used to. it's a lot of science...and technology - which is not something I typically want to read pages and pages about. But, it's a small part mixed in with the usual character and world building.

I thought the story was very interesting. Claire does not have an easy go at life and has never really fit in. And when it all comes crumbling down, she does a great job of holding her head up high and just trying to make lemonade out of the lemons she's be
Catherine Siemann
A quick and enjoyable read. I've been wary of the floods of steampunk series which have been coming out recently; too many of them are paint-by-numbers. While Lady of Devices contains quite a few of the standard plot elements -- young woman who'd rather study science than face the marriage market, reversal of fortune, potential love interest -- the story takes an unexpected turn when the heroine and a group of child-thieves take each other under their respective wings. The story ends rather abru ...more
Keanan Brand
The cover led me to expect a different kind of story than I found, but it was still good, and I enjoyed it.

The voice was right, and the author knows how to construct sentences that could have been lifted from texts of that time. It's an excellent steampunk novel, with a leaning toward romance.
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Award-winning author Shelley Adina wrote her first teen novel when she was 13. It was rejected by the literary publisher to whom she sent it, but he did say she knew how to tell a story. That was enough to keep her going through the rest of her adolescence, a career, a move to another country, a B.A. in Literature, an M.F.A. in Writing Popular Fiction, and countless manuscript pages. Shelley is a ...more
More about Shelley Adina...
Her Own Devices (Magnificent Devices, #2) Magnificent Devices (Magnificent Devices #3) Brilliant Devices (Magnificent Devices #4) A Lady of Resources (Magnificent Devices, #5) It's All About Us (All About Us, #1)

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