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Paranormal Discussions > The Seer, by Jordan Reece

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message 1: by Ulysses (new)

Ulysses Dietz | 1560 comments We are in the country of Ainscote, in the city of Cantercaster. Our hero is an othelin in his mid-twenties, Jesco Currane. Periodically he is asked to leave the security of the asylum where’s lived since he was a boy to help out the Cantercaster police with particularly difficult murder cases. One detective he often works with is Laeric Scoth. Scoth seems distant and dismissive of Jesco’s talents, but Jesco knows that they share at least one common interest. When Jesco and Laeric are thrown together in a particularly frustrating murder case, they begin to understand each other.

So here’s a book that was recommended by a friend. I finished it late last night. I realize that I’ve sort of fallen for the Steampunk romance genre, but there was so much about this particular book that pleased me, I couldn’t resist giving it one of my rare five-star reviews. While I tend to shy away from historical novels—because I’ve read so much period literature that the flaws are often too obvious—Steampunk is a liberating sort of genre. Because the author can create a world that mixes contemporary, historical, and science-fiction, it all comes down to literary skill and not historical detail.

Jordan Reece has created a puzzling, almost-recognizable but distinctly off-kilter world in which to place her two anti-heroes. It is a world in which computerized horses pull the carriages, in which knives are called blades and guns are called shooters. People travel by train and there are dirigibles, but there seems to be no way to communicate beyond letters and in person. It is the typically odd world of Steampunk, feeling both modern and archaic at the same time.

But Reece has infused this complicated and ugly murder mystery with a profound gentleness—an odd thing, that—through her characters of Jesco and Laeric. The religious element of this world is anti-science, and condemns Jesco’s paranormal powers as demonic. The rational part of this world sees the value of Jesco’s ability to see into people’s lives by touching objects they have touched, and uses him. While nobody proclaims same-sex attraction publicly, there seem to be no religious strictures against it, and Jesco’s emotional loneliness is mostly due to the limitations imposed upon him by his own psychic abilities. The laconic Laeric is a workaholic, and as Jesco begins to see through the gruff exterior, he realizes there is a man of great wisdom and dedication. The friendship that buds into romance between these two men is central, but not what drives the plot. This is, above all, a murder mystery, set in a world where—as in our own—money is power and justice is for those who can afford it.

I really loved this book, because it was interesting and very well written. But it was Jesco and Laeric who really drew me in. Their humanity made me care about them and their world, and that’s exactly what an author needs her characters to do.


message 2: by PaperMoon (new)

PaperMoon | 664 comments This was a fantastic read Uly and I agree it is such a quaint world to be diverted away to for a couple of hours. I can't wait for the next in the series.


message 3: by Ulysses (new)

Ulysses Dietz | 1560 comments Oh, good...this is the first of a series!


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