Retribution Falls (Tales of the Ketty Jay, #1)
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Retribution Falls (Tales of the Ketty Jay #1)

4.02 of 5 stars 4.02  ·  rating details  ·  3,785 ratings  ·  521 reviews
Frey is the captain of the Ketty Jay. He and his gang make a living on the wrong side of the law, running contraband, robbing airships and making a nuisance of themselves. An easy heist and a fast buck sound great until a heist goes wrong and the freighter explodes. Suddenly Frey isn't just a nuisance - he's public enemy number one.
Paperback, 429 pages
Published April 8th 2010 by Gollancz (first published 2009)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Nataliya
Sep 03, 2012 Nataliya rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Sci-fi and fantasy buffs
Nataliya Gushes About This Book - Picture Frenzy - More Book Gushing - I Want To Be An Airship Pilot (*)
* Oh, did I mention how much I love Jules Verne-esque chapter titles?


Retribution Falls is a well-crafted steampunk novel that immediately won me over. It is a very entertaining and refreshing read that has everything you want for 400-plus pages of delightful fun. I am serious - I mean, there are airships, sky piracy, GOLD, legendary pirate city, revolvers, adventures, danger, undead, con...more
Dan Schwent
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Seak (Bryce L.)
What happens if you combine The Lies of Locke Lamora with air ships, then add some Pirates of the Caribbean? This. This is what happens. Chris Wooding nailed it in Retribution Falls.

I'll get this out of the way. I've been told it's a lot like Firefly. You may have to take away my geek card here ... but I've never seen Firefly. The movie, Serenity, was excellent, but I'm still looking forward to checking out the show. This means I can't confirm or deny the comparison.

I apologize for any non-Fire...more
Chance Maree
Aug 24, 2011 Chance Maree rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Firefly fans, space sci-fi adventure lovers
I'm a Firefly fan who picked up Retribution Falls to feed my nostalgia for good old cowboy/pirate steampunk westerns. I wasn't disappointed, to say the least. I laughed, got misty, and turned pages, completely absorbed in the adventure. The writing is excellent, the characters fleshy and fascinating (except for 2 by my count), and the plot is somewhat classic, yet it delivers startling breezes of fresh air, plenty enough to prohibit yawns. The next book, Black Lung Captain, is now on my to-read...more
Carol. [All cynic, all the time]
Jun 10, 2011 Carol. [All cynic, all the time] rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Carol. [All cynic, all the time] by: Fantasy Aficionados
Four and a half stars. First read through, have to say it was very good. Probably my favorite steampunk to date, and a fine novel all around. Airships, gunfights, pirates, a golem, daemons... lots of fun ingredients but also fully developed characters. A little bit of the "shades of grey" protagonists; the captain of the airship seems to resemble Captain Jack Sparrow--charming as all get out, but you have the sneaking suspicion he isn't trustworthy. In fact, first couple of incidents we witness...more
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Angels Weep For Goodreads)
Retribution Falls took me on a journey where I was continually required to reevaluate everything-- from the story itself, the world in which it takes place, and not the least, the characters. Great worldbuilding, and surprisingly multi-faceted characters who seemed to be archetypes, but proved to be much more. It was complex, intriguing, and ultimately very enjoyable.

Reviewed for Bitten By books. http://bittenbybooks.com.
Liviu
Pure fun; and do not be fooled by the pulp-like presentation of the novel with chapters with headings a la Jules Verne, since the novel is thoroughly modern in tone and content, partly ironic, partly serious.

I laughed out loud many, many times, but there is a lot of heartbreak and tragedy.

A crew of misfits led by one Darian Frey who seems to attract the attention of beautiful rich girls once too many for his own good is scrapping a living as airship smugglers and occasional pirates. Kind of bott...more
Algernon
Full praise for this book from me. Not so much for some intrinsic or objective artistic value, but for the fun I've had reading it.
The story is probably one we've heard numerous time before. A group of down of their luck misfits and outcasts try to make a living at the edge of the civilized world, playing a game of risk in a dangerous environment and stepping on the wrong side of the law every so often. We already had The Argonauts, some of the Knights of the Round Table, The Elizabethan private...more
Dawn
I was pretty bored during the entire first third of this. I almost gave it up several times, just because it was taking me so long to dredge through it. I wasn't digging the plot or the characters, I just didn't think the premise was "my thing". Science fiction, sky pirates... Sounded weird to me. But I'm really glad I stuck with it. The characters grew on me, the plot stepped it up, and I got sucked in. Hell, I got so emotionally attached to the characters that I almost teared up in one spot. I...more
Kim
I'd been hearing a lot about this book recently often mentioned in the same breath as sci-fi TV classic Firefly. And there are some similarities between them. A crew of misfits on a flying vessel, outside the law in a world recovering from war. There is a bit of humour and the crew gets in over their heads. But these are similarities with more than just Firefly. And all other similarities end there.

This tale revolved around Captain Frey and his ship, the Ketty Jay, and it's passengers. They aren...more
J.M.
Wow. I loved RETRIBUTION FALLS. Wooding, my friend, from that unfortunate offering that was STORM THIEF, you are now redeemed! I thank you.

FIREFLY fans, read this. You won't be let down. Highly recommended. Five stars!
My Awful Reviews
I have a confession to make. I first started reading this book when it came out in paperback a year and a half ago. I'd made it about 35 pages in when something else caught my interest more strongly, and this book fell by the wayside. After recently finishing Retribution Falls, I'm disappointed that I don't even REMEMBER what took me away from this book. I should have had this review up back in 2009, and I'm sorry that many of you have had to wait until now to hear about this great book.

Retribut...more
Jason
Wow so much fun in this steam-punk, sci-fi, western, fantasy. Yes, the characters are nothing new, they are superficial anti-heroes, but they are done very well and I found it easy to like them. Much of this book leaves you wondering more about them, who are they? what was their past? and so on. This is a sci-fi adventure in the vain of "Firefly or Serenity". There is plenty of gunfire, sword fights, bombing, and daemon-ism, top it off with a golem, pirates and some ghosts and wow what fun it is...more
Kathryn
As far as fans of steampunk should be concerned, they have a champion in Chris Wooding. He understands what a rip-roaring adventure meshed with magic and science, set in a world of pirates and flying ships, should be. He understands that humor is best delivered dry and by scrappy characters just trying to escape their past and carve out a future for themselves, even if they have to resort to thievery and even *gasp!* saving their own skin over the skin of others. All of this understanding makes...more
Irena
First, if you want to read a story of noble heroes then this is not a story for you. This book doesn't have heroes. What it does have is a great and fast story, more than interesting characters and their slow and beautifully done development, so by the time I finished reading, I loved them.

We are introduced to the crew of the Ketty Jey through Jez, a petite and great navigator who is new to the crew. Malvery is introducing them and hers are the first impressions we have of them. Malvery is a hug...more
Pauline
Dec 19, 2011 Pauline rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: steampunk fans, pirates
After borrowing and returning this book from library four times I finally got around to reading it. How I wish I had read it sooner! I would say that this is my first foray into a steampunk-esqe novel and I absolutely loved it!

This book has a lot of elements which make it fun and hard to put down. There is a slew of very distinctive characters that make up the crew of the Ketty Jay, each with their own struggles and quirks. Gunfights, airships, political intrigue and moral ambiguity all make a...more
Michael
While sky piracy is not what Darian Frey wants, fate has not been kind to the captain of the Ketty Jay. Along with his crew, Frey finds himself involved in an attack that goes horribly wrong resulting in them being on the run. Hunted by the elite Century Knights and bounty hunters, the airship goes into hiding in the hidden legendary pirate town Retribution Falls but only to discover just how deep this conspiracy runs.

Most of the people would compare this book to the cult classic TV show Firefly...more
Melanie
In a steampunk-esque world of airships, pirates and daemons, Captain Darian Frey finds himself leading a rag-tag crew of larger-than-life characters on a series of misadventures. Used to stumbling from trouble to trouble, Frey jumps on the chance to make some serious money. Unfortunately, this blows up in his face spectacularly and he finds himself forced into running from...well, pretty much everyone while trying to uncover what exactly is going on.

The only phrase I can think of to properly des...more
Richard
For me Retribution Falls was the definition of a page turner, I could not put this book down and that is owed largely in thanks to the remarkable job Chris Wooding has done to create such an interesting and vivid world and the searing pace of his twisting plotline.

The story follows Darian Fray, a lecherous, drunken gambler who lives his life from port to port as captain of his airship the Ketty Jay. Earning a living from small time smuggling and other nefarious activities, Fray takes a risky ch...more
Jacey
I expected to like this a lot and found I mostly liked it, but it didn't quite live up to the expectations from the blurbs on the book jackets which said: "A kind of old-fashioned adventure that I didn't think you were allowed to write anymore" and "The pace is furious, the action s full-screen, the style is sharp and polished..."

Well, mostly the pace is furious and mostly it is an old fashioned adventure and I like it a lot for that, but there are a few elements I'm not too sure about.

But first...more
Coffcat
I'd heard some good things about this book and was looking forward to reading it. When I saw some of the comments on here about how much it's like Firefly I got a little nervous. I'm a big Firefly fan and I was concerned that it'd either be a cheap knock off OR not live up to expectations. If you compare something to Firefly, by god it better be awesome!

And awesome it definitely is! This book is all over the place in a good way. It's a pirate adventure filled to the brim with the most unusual gr...more
Gary
Ooh! this has started well! Looking forward to some good old steampunk... Actually 3.5 stars but only because I could have done with less of Frey's soul searching every dozen pages. Overall, a good read with a cast of characters that I could easily read more of and a 'world' backdrop that is imaginative and entertaining. The character Jess has so much potential that I'm using my meagre psychic powers to influence Mr.Wooding to have her play a big role in future books. This is a relatively short...more
Laurel
What does this book have to offer? Well it has drunkards and pirates, Archdukes and religious fanatics, innocent children pitted against merciless daemons, zombies and ghouls, true love and unbelievable heartbreak, with a gollum thrown in for good measure! I'll be reading the sequel quite soon, I think...

A great adventure read!
Mimi
4½ out of 5 stars

I think Peter F. Hamilton summed it up best:
“A fast, exhilarating read [...] the kind of old-fashioned adventure I didn’t think we were allowed to write anymore, of freebooting privateers making their haphazard way in a wondrous retro-future world.”

So, yeah, a lot of fun. That’s the best way I can describe the experience of reading this book. It’s fast-paced, high-octaned, unpredictable, and fun. The last ten chapters are un-put-down-able.

The Ketty Jay is a beloved cargo fighte...more
Amanda
Retribution Falls by Chris Wooding is a tale about Darian Frey, captain of the Ketty Jay and leader of a motley band of misfits and rogues. They survive - barely - on the proceeds from petty piracy and small-time crook jobs. But now Frey has been offered a plush job, an easy killing, and he can't resist taking the bait - even though it all seems too good to be true. Almost inevitably - given Frey's usual run of luck - the heist goes horribly wrong and Frey realises that he has been framed. On th...more
Jess
http://lightningtreelive.wordpress.co...

Fans of Firefly will probably find Chris Wooding’s Retribution Falls a bit like Marmite – and either love it or hate it. It seems a little harsh to call the book a ‘ripoff’ (as Alice of Sandstorm Reviews does) but then again, it would be an understatement merely to call it ‘inspired’ by Joss Whedon’s widely-loved TV show. The similarities are bountiful: a crew of genial degenerates and runaways, a ruggedly endearing captain, a fugitive aristocratic passeng...more
Shiromi Arserio
Feb 26, 2011 Shiromi Arserio rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Firefly fans or those who enjoy steampunk
If you’re a Firefly fan like me, you probably yearn for more adventures out on the raggedy edge. If you’re a Firefly fan like me, you’ll probably love Retribution Falls. On the surface, the story has a lot that is similar to the cancelled series. It focuses on a group of outlaws that don’t belong, as they struggle to keep their ship, the Ketty Jay, in the air, which is the only place they can now call home. The group is led by a rugged, good looking captain- a scoundrel who has too many damn mor...more
Jake
This book probably isn't actually a five. The story is somewhat predictable, there's a bit too much Deus Ex Machina in parts, and you'll recognize all the characters mere sentences after they are introduced.

That said, and here's the thing, its an absolute blast to read. It's a joyous, rip-roaring, high flying adventure. It's fun from start to finish and never really gets boring or overwrought or over the top. The world feels lived in and even though much of it will be recognizable its more like...more
Scott (of the clan of Scott)

It has been a long time since I first heard about this book. The moment I read the synopsis I was interested. Really, how could I not be? Airships! Pirates! fist fights! Gun Fights! Sword Fights! Golems! Magic! Demons! Back-stabbing! Gold! Sex! Death!

Sounds just like my yearly Christmas wish list.

It took me this long to finally read it. Not sure what the delay was all about, or why I kept putting it off in favor of other reads. Just one of those things. I promise you, I wont be making that mista...more
Chelsea
Retribution Falls is a rollicking tale, populated by well thought-out characters, each with their own kinks and checkered pasts. There's a captain who has a strained relationship with Responsibility, a navigator who repels cats, the drunk doctor, the pretty-boy scientist, the stoic mechanic and two fighter pilots who couldn't be more different.

Pros:
I really loved the interplay between Pinn and Harkins. These two characters are complete opposites, but since they're employed do to the same job, t...more
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The Book Club: Retribution Falls Feedback incl. Spoilers 4 15 May 08, 2013 02:16AM  
What's The Name o...: Sci-fi/steampunk Pirate book series [s] 1 41 Dec 06, 2011 11:58AM  
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81096
Chris Wooding grew up in a small town in Leicestershire, where not much of anything happened. So he started to write novels. He was sixteen when he completed his first. He had an agent by eighteen. By nineteen he had signed his first book deal. When he left university he began to write full-time, and he has been doing it professionally all his adult life.

Now thirty-two, Chris has written sixteen b...more
More about Chris Wooding...
Poison The Haunting of Alaizabel Cray The Black Lung Captain (Tales of the Ketty Jay, #2) Malice (Malice, #1) Storm Thief

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“Ain't no deserving, or otherwise,' Silo said, his bass voice rolling out from deep in his chest. 'There's what is, and what ain't, and there's what you do about it. Regret's just a way to make you feel okay when you're not making amends. A man can waste a life with regrets.” 8 likes
“Ladies, gentlemen, we're out of here! Your boss is upstairs, and only mildly wounded. Go help him if you have the inclination. You'll also notice the house is on fire. Make of that what you like.” 5 likes
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