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The Black Lung Captain (Tales of the Ketty Jay #2)

4.25  ·  Rating Details ·  3,709 Ratings  ·  332 Reviews
Darian Frey is down on his luck. He can barely keep his crew fed and his rickety aircraft in the sky. Even the simplest robberies seem to go wrong. It's getting so a man can't make a dishonest living any more. Enter Captain Grist.
Paperback, 487 pages
Published 2011 by Gollancz (first published July 1st 2010)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Dec 07, 2015 Evgeny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Malcolm Reynolds Darian Frey is the captain of a spaceship Firefly flying ship Ketty Jay. Sorry about the confusion, but these are very similar and thus are easy to get mixed up. Anyway, Captain Frey seemingly had never heard the famous expression "if it sounds too good to be true, it most probably is". He fell for yet another get-rich-quick offer and as a result he and his crew have to dodge bullets flying at them from literally every direction practically non-stop through the whole book.

Let m
Feb 26, 2012 Nataliya rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012-reads
The Black Lung Captain continues the story of a rogue and irresistible to women airship pilot/small-time smuggler, setting out with his crew on the adventures full of fun and debauchery... Sounds familiar?

...and this time, they are chasing a mysterious and powerful artifact that is about to fall in the wrong hands. Again, sounds familiar?

(Do you know how much I love Harrison Ford? Let me give you a hint. My card is a Ford. It has a name. My Ford is named Harrison. Yeah.)

Black Lung Captain, the
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
Actual rating: 3.99999999 stars. Get it? Good.

Introducing….Captain Darian Frey 2.0! Now with more humour! More kick-ass action! More adventure and fun and stuff! More blood and gore! More awesome villains! More cool aerial (or not) fights! More pretty much everything!

{insert sigh of relief here}

That was a close one. I mean, I almost didn't read this instalment. Book #1 was alright, but not the oh-wow-this-is-so-entertaining-and-boom-Captain-Frey-you're-mine-let-me-kidnap-you-and-lock-you-up-in-
David - proud Gleeman in Branwen's adventuring party
Dave's Quick Judgement -

- The villains are really good at being bad.
- The heroes are also really good at being bad!
- Many subplots introduced in the first novel are moved forward in exciting ways.
- Loads of laugh-out-loud moments despite the story being darker this time around.
- Wooding's world-building abilities have improved.

- The absense of crucial team members at times interrupts the flow of the story (which is sorta the point Wooding is trying to make ab
Feb 27, 2017 Andy rated it liked it
Bang, straight back into the reading groove after a coupla iffy books in my world of reading with this entertaining tale. Loved the first in the series mainly due to its characters & interaction between the crew who are in reality a bunch of misfits who somehow against all the odds gel as a crew. Not much backstory was part of the first book & you were cast straight into the plot...... this episode gives more about each of the crew in turn whilst the plot (treasure hunt) unfolds & ge ...more
Jun 11, 2011 Carol. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fun swashbuckling adventure. Should probably be read while drinking a glass of Captain's and Coke for fully immersive enjoyment. The characters grew on me as they went through more tribulations and started to transform with experience, even Frey. One I need to add to my own library, because it deserves a second read.
Jan 26, 2016 Jokoloyo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So far, this is the best rag-tag-team steampunk series lately.
It is a quick review for now. I am sure I will update the review after reading a whole series.

After read the second book of Ketty Jay, I perceive the 4 book series as a closely linked series. On this second book, character development is the focus (view spoiler) The plot of this book is not
Aug 31, 2015 Richard rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy

Just what the doctor ordered, a nice big healthy dose of fun! After reading around 1000 pages of “A Clash of Kings” doom and gloom (don’t get me wrong, it’s a great read) this was exactly the thing to cleanse my palette and it’s good to see that the first novel in the series wasn’t a fluke. If anything, this novel is better overall than the stellar “Retribution Falls”.

I remember when reviewing the first novel I mentioned that you didn’t get information of all the crew. This is well and trul
Sep 29, 2016 Paul rated it it was amazing
Wonderful character driven fantasy that borders on scifi. This book and series is all about the crew , how they deal with their background, each other and the world in general.
Too nice to be pirates, too dirty to be legit the Kitty Jay and its crew fall into an unprofitable grey area so jump at a chance to make a fortune.While the first book was about the crew coming together this book almost sees it all crumble apart, and it becomes about each member accepting who they are and coming to terms
I read the first book about the crew of the air ship Ketty Jay last year and "Retribution Falls" was a 5 star read for me.
As this book takes all the ingredients the first one had it won't be surprising that I enjoyed the second installment as much as the first one.

For those of you who haven't heard of the series before, imagine the legendary tv show Firely in a Steampunk corsett.
There is a unique secondary world -so no pseudo-victorian scenario- which offers a lot of sense of wonder.

But by far t
Executive Summary: After a bit of a slow start, I think I enjoyed this one slightly more than the first. Looking forward to get to book 3 soon.

Full Review
I originally came onto this series after a recommendation in a thread about books similar to Firefly. Two books in, I'm hard to agree with that. Sure you have a crew flying around ship, but that's about where the similarities end for me.

For one thing, the characters are far less likable in this series than on Firefly. I recall coming to like
Jun 11, 2016 Pavle rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantastika
Nije ovo jedan od onih univerzalno dobrih romana koje se čak i hipsteri usudjuju da vole, iako im religija to brani. Ovo je nešto malo drugačije, te moj rivju nije nimalo objektivan.

Svaki aspekt ovog romana mi odgovara, bukvalno ne postoji nikakva sitnica koju bih mogao da mu zamerim. Gde je prvi deo bio svojstveni prolog i uvod u ekipu likova, ovo je već punokrvna avantura koja poseduje neverovatan i nimalo isforsiran šarm. Jako simpatična ekipica, prirodan i interesantan world-building, odmere
The Shayne-Train
Man o man o man o MAN! This series is amazingly, fantastically excellent!

It's not often that the 2nd book in a series totally surpasses the first in terms of awesomeness, world-building, character feely-feelz, attention-grabbing excitement, butt-kickin', and witty-ass banter. This one does. And it does it with aplomb.

Daring rescues, gas-powered flying behemoths, giant possessed metal golems, rattling machine guns, magic swords lopping off pieces, space-faring telepathic pseudo-zombies, stealing
Mar 02, 2015 Kaitlin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another wonderfully adventurous and fun-filled story from this second book. I have to say that after loving the first one in this series I wasn't too worried about going into the next one and I just felt that Chris Wooding gets my kind of humour and makes me really entertained the whole way through.

This story once again follows the crew members of the Ketty Jay, a 'sort-of' pirate airship with a 'sort-of' awesome crew. The character are what really make these books thrilling and enticing for me.
Sep 18, 2014 M. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes rollicking adventure tales
Still a lot of fun and action-packed, just like the first book. This series is quickly becoming one of my favorites, if not my all-time favorite.

Review moved to
Aug 18, 2015 Lee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: steam-punk
I am moving the star rating up to 5 for this one, basically because I am really really enjoying the story. There are some corny moments and there are some pretty convenient super power abilities, but you know what.... it's just a fun read. It's a real adventure story, with what appears to be a pretty solid forward thinking storyline.

I was expecting more of the same with book 2, but Wooding certainly appears to have been laying the ground work for this series, there are you standard smallish sid
From my blog.

Damn it Mr Wooding, you almost put me in tears again! And with a Golem! How can a writer get so much beauty from a giant metal shell?

Ahem. Anyway, Black Lung Captain picks up after Retribution Falls, following ragtag crew of the Kitty Jay. It is most assuredly a book from a series, you must read RF first(and if you haven't, get on it). The book could be classified as steampunk, though it is not focused on the tech at all, and unlike most steampunk lives on its own world.

It reads li
Aug 20, 2016 Ctgt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another great adventure from our favorite crew of misfits. Some more background on Jez, the Manes and Crake and Bess. Oh and maybe a whiff of romance.

ᴥ Irena ᴥ
If you loved Retribution Falls, you would love this book too. Chris Wooding can write a great treasure-hunt adventure.

There are so many twists and turns in this story, that it is safe to say you will not catch a break even when you come really close to the end of the book. Make no mistake, this is not only a treasure hunt story. It gets so much depth through its characters and their suffering and growth, and the world with its political and religious intrigues and conspiracies.
While Retribution
Nov 09, 2011 J.M. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Frey and his renegade crew of misfits did such amazing things in RETRIBUTION FALLS, I was wondering just how Wooding was going to top it. Well, he did, and then some, I might add! THE BLACK LUNG CAPTAIN is every bit as good as the first one. Now, I'm a but bummed the third "Ketty Jay" title, THE IRON JACKAL, isn't readily available here in the States just yet (the UK release was last October), because I wanted to sashay right into it (can one sashay while reading?). Unfortunately, that just ain' ...more
Nov 25, 2011 Traci rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: steampunk
It took awhile for me to get into this one. It's been awhile since I read Retribution Falls and I was a little confused on who was who and what had happened in the first book. The reminders did come eventually but I do wish they had come a bit sooner.
The plot to this one never really grabbed me. The villain was blah. The Mane were interesting. But mostly this was more of a character driven story. And for the most part I love the characters. Although Crake and Jez are my clear favorites. And thei
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
More thrilling twists and turns and character conundrums for the reader to keep up with. Very enjoyable. I didn't always like what happened, but I definitely was hooked and wanted to keep reading. All in all, a successful follow up to Retribution Falls. I recommend it.

Reviewed for Bitten by Books.
colleen the convivial curmudgeon
3 1/2

This is a book which, for me, may have suffered a bit from heightened expectations. I rather enjoyed the first book, despite its flaws, and was told from a few people that the second one was even better, so I sort of expected to be blown away. However, even though the second is also a good book, I didn't really feel that there was a marked improvement from the first, so I ended up feeling a little let down, overall.

As I said, there are some good things that happen in the book. I particularl
Dec 06, 2010 Jason rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-books, read-2010
Wow, for a second novel in a series with many to come, Black Lung Captain did not suffer the normal sophomore blues. Once again, we are taken on a non-stop rollicking space cowboy, steampunk adventure. The whole cast from Retribution Falls is back in another Tale of the Ketty Jay. I felt like I was reading about The Serenity from Firefly, one of my favorite movies and quickly cancelled TV series.

In this novel we get more back story on the captain and his crew, and all the richer it makes this s
Agnieszka "Aeth" Jędrzejczyk
What can I say, I'm so happy I found this series, because this what adventure books should look like. Flying from one exotic place to another, looking for clues, bantering along the way, chasing after artifacts, dodging betrayals - all this and more is right there. But what is even more important are the little bits, which are even more prominent in the second book of the series. The characters are much more fleshed out, their personal stories more developed, their interactions more natural and ...more
Nov 02, 2014 Nayeomi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this was awesome and even more exciting than the first book! Everybody seemed to have gone from the Ketty Jay including the blasted moggie but it all came through together in the end.
I am actually looking forward to how the Manes will tie up with the series in the future.

Definitely a great, if not a tad bumpy ride in the sky from Chris Wooding's infamous Captain Frey and his crew aboard Ketty Jay.

Loved it and will recommend it to everyone who loves Piracy and a bloody humor. :)
My Awful Reviews
Mar 31, 2012 My Awful Reviews rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There's not too much to say about The Black Lung Captain that I haven't already said about Retribution Falls. The main difference between the two novels seems to be that The Black Lung Captain is much deeper and more of a character driven novel than Retribution Falls. This doesn't mean that there's less action, or that there's less humor. All it really means is that Wooding took advantage of the fact that he's got characters that are flawed, and gave them a chance to deal with their problems.

Oct 16, 2014 Mark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
In reviewing the first book of this series, I wrote that it's fun to read a book that knows what it wants to be and then is exactly that. The Black Lung Captain, book #2 in the series, also knows what it wants to be and is exactly that. It has been a treat.

As a bonus, this second book even has character development, possibly even more than the first book. Most of the crew of the Ketty Jay goes through some kind of growth arc as the book goes along. Often you find that a series kind of gets stati
Jan 23, 2012 Algernon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
Black Lung Captain is the confirmation that Retribution Falls was no one-hit-wonder. The ragtag band of outsiders and misfits embark here on new adventures that will bring upon them uncounted perils rather than the fame and fortune they were aiming at.

The McGuffin in this caper is a myterious artefact / doom device found and lost again in an abandoned dreadnought. Captain Darian Frey has his work cut out as he struggles to recover the artefact, keep his crew from coming apart under pressure, and
Dec 02, 2015 Melora rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first in this series was fun, but this second is better. A really solid four stars. The character development is stronger, and I thought the plot was more coherent/less confusing. Part of that is probably because this Is the second, and I've figured out the basics of how this world works (as in, I'm no longer expecting the ship to travel to other parts of the galaxy, as I did through much of the first, confused by the similarities to the Firefly television series) and what sort of people my ...more
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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-nine, Chris has written over twe
More about Chris Wooding...

Other Books in the Series

Tales of the Ketty Jay (4 books)
  • Retribution Falls (Tales of the Ketty Jay, #1)
  • The Iron Jackal (Tales of the Ketty Jay, #3)
  • The Ace of Skulls (Tales of the Ketty Jay, #4)

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“Well, wherever you go, whatever you do, you're still you. You can change your surroundings, start a new life, but you'll always fall into the same old patterns, make the same kind of friends, commit the same mistakes. The thing you need to change is yourself.” 23 likes
“Not for the first time, he wished he commanded a highly trained bunch of soldiers instead of a ragtag mob of rejects in varying stages of alcoholism.” 18 likes
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