The Dark Victorian: Risen Reviews

| May 30, 2013

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The Dark Victorian: Risen

“Way will open.”

She is Artifice.
A resurrected criminal and agent of HRH Prince Albert’s Secret Commission.
An artificial ghost.
A Quaker.

He is Jim Dastard.
The oldest surviving agent of the Secret Commission.
An animated skull.
A mentor to newly resurrected agents.

It is 1880 in a mechanical and supernatural London. Agents of Prince Albert’s Secret Commission, their criminal pasts wiped from their memories, are resurrected to fight the eldritch evils that threaten England. Amidst this turmoil, Jim Dastard and his new partner Artifice must stop a re-animationist raising murderous dead children. As Art and Jim pursue their quarry, Art discovers clues about her past self, and through meeting various intriguing women—a journalist, a medium, a prostitute, and a mysterious woman in black—where her heart lies. Yet the question remains: What sort of criminal was she? A new beginning, a new identity, and new dangers await Art as she fights for the Secret Commission and for her second life.

“I loved Elizabeth Watasin’s graphic novel, Charm School. Now, after too
long an absence, she has returned to print with fiction. Dark Victorian:
Risen, is just that: a dark Victorian detective story featuring two of
the most eldritch detectives I have ever encountered: a beautiful Quaker
amazon of a ghost and her sidekick, a wisecracking, monocled skull in a
top hat. And they are not the only memorable characters we meet along the
way in this dark romp through fin de siecle London’s foul cribs and
alleys, where our detectives search for the man who brings innocent
murdered creatures back to life, to wreak a hideous vengeance upon their
torturers and murderers. How about a lovely prostitute who may be a
dryad? Or twin sisters, one of whom has a deadly tendrilled virus growing
on the left side of her face?
Risen is only the first of what promises to be a thoroughly enjoyable (if
delightfully disturbing) series. Roll over, Arthur Conan Doyle! Move
over, Philip Pullman!”
– Trina Robbins
Writer, Herstorian, author of The Chicagoland detective Agency series and Lily Renee, Escape Artist

“RISEN is as interesting for the things half-seen as the things shown clearly: the elegant exotica of steampunk London, the mysterious natures of both the not-dead protagonists, the elements unexpected even in steampunk, such as the ‘artificial’ ghost’s faith and ethics.
I am well and truly drawn in, and am eager for more.”
– Carla Speed McNeil, creator of FINDER

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