As a long-time reader of Shelley Adina’s Victorian era steampunk adventures, I’ll admit I was a bit hesitant to step into the Regency era with her. I was also unfamiliar with R.E. Scott’s books. About two minutes into The Emperor’s Aeronaut, my hesitations went by the wayside. The story captivated me right from the get-go. The writing is crisp and lively, the plot moves at a fine pace and is absolutely stuffed with twists and turns, hair raising adventures, and even an old furniture-friend I’d grown to love from another of Adina’s books. Yes, I know that sounds silly, but just smile and nod and you’ll join me soon enough.
The main plotline is very ambitious. Can two young, female inventors/engineers build a balloon capable of crushing Napoleon’s plan to invade England? There’s action a-plenty, much of it taking place on rough and dangerous seas. What really brought the story to life were the compelling, breathtaking descriptions of sailing on—and above—those cruel, deadly waves. So well done. The grand finale was described so vividly it nearly left me breathless.
I’ve very happy this is just the beginning of a series. It’s one I will be reading right on through to the conclusion.