cover image The Affair of the Chalk Cliffs

The Affair of the Chalk Cliffs

James P. Blaylock. Subterranean (, $35 (176p) ISBN 978-1-59606-365-5

In the latest Holmesian adventure from Blaylock (The Ebb Tide), steampunk hero Langdon St. Ives once again faces off against Dr. Ignacio Narbondo. The action is set in motion by a bizarre madness that afflicts the members of the Explorer's Club as well as a village in Kent. St. Ives, concerned that his estranged wife may be in the afflicted village, leads his companions through the British countryside, where they are captured by Narbondo's men. The focus then shifts to St. Ives's friends Jack Owlesby and Tubby Frobisher, blas%C3%A9 manservant Hasbro, and Tubby's Uncle Gilbert as they attempt to find St. Ives and discover what is behind the strange fog that causes temporary insanity. While many recent novels have picked up the steampunk banner, this one fully delivers, offering action, farce, tender relationships, and prose full of genuine Victorian cadence and flavor. (June)