First in the series, The Alliance of Silver and
promises to be a fun adult steampunk saga. Willan Lucius
a lesser demon, tied to the post of assassin by a more
powerful demon. Lucius wears human guise and he's happier
tempting married women and anything else where a dangerous
character is an asset. But he knows that when his overlord
beckons he doesn't have a choice. This NIGHTMARE IN STEAM
is about to begin.
Lucius is rather foul-mouthed, but we'd expect that of a
demon. He lives in the Victorian era, in Whitechapel of
London. A new band of demon hunters is on the street, and
he has been ordered to find them. London's clock workers'
guild is a front for the Alliance of Silver and Steam, and
Lucius needs to kill one to steal his dreaming memories.
Instead he makes a connection with a woman called Eliza
Dorley, who attracts him sexually. Now he's in trouble.
Eliza is an inventor for the guild, creating everything
from alarm clocks to ray guns for killing demons. She uses
crystals as a power source and has even made an automaton
shaped as a dog. The sudden death of one of the guild's
young members shakes her to the core. This looks as
a demon has found them, and how can they be safe when they
need to sleep?
Some of the concepts are fun like steam and clockwork
bikes, while Eliza can't lace her corset by herself so the
practical lady has made one with metal snaps in the front.
Meanwhile we have to master the angel and demon concepts
too. Seraphina has managed to rise to control the demons;
fallen angel herself, she has no liking for humans and
wants to enslave this weaker race. There are various
of demon, from kappa demons to incubus, some in positions
of human society's power, but as they are slow to
the demon hunters could make serious inroads on their
numbers. Seraphina wants the hunters dead.
Lucius has sex on the brain, or on other parts of him,
continually, and with occasional graphic fight scenes and
strong language NIGHTMARE IN STEAM is definitely a book
mature readers. This is a tense adventure in an
setting, sometimes erotic and often steamy. Lexie Ostrow's
next book in this series is to be called Bite of Silver.
Eliza Kempe Dorley is always left in the background. As a
female, being top inventor for the Alliance of Silver and
Steam has as many draw backs as perks. She’s in charge of
the creation of the many tools the Alliance uses in
pursuit of the demons that run lose in the London
Underground, which means without her, the demons would be
harder to put down. It also means she misses all of the
action and has never had the chance to really use any of
her inventions. Lucius Cooley Willan is a Nightmare Demon
with a penchant for gambling and sleeping with women he
shouldn’t and its landed him in hot water. Now he spends
his nights slinking in humans dreams and unleashing
terrors so strong it kills them so he can capture their
soul for his boss. But when he’s ordered to attack the
group that hunts his kind he’s enthralled by the feisty
inventor he comes upon. Eliza’s victim to Lucius in a way
no others have been, a sensual dream that she can’t shake
when she wakes up. When he bumps into her at the trains
she’s an addiction he can’t shake. When he outright
disobeys the demon who controls him for some out of dreams
interactions with the Eliza, it will be up to him to save
her from the nightmare he’s put her in.