cover image The Adventure of the Golden Woman

The Adventure of the Golden Woman

Cynthia Ward. Aqueduct, $12 trade paper (104p) ISBN 978-1-61976-216-9

The wildly fun, fast-paced finale to Ward’s Blood-Thirsty Agent series (after The Adventure of the Naked Guide) finds vampire double agent Lucy Harker, daughter of Dracula, working against the power-grabbing British empire through a resistance unit housed in 1931 British-occupied Berlin. After her attempt to deliver documents to Dolf Heidler is foiled by an oddly graceful, golden automaton, Lucy lands in the hands of her step-uncle, Sherlock Holmes. With the help of her vampire lover and fellow double agent, Clarimal Stein—Countess Karnstein of Sheridan Le Fanu’s Carmilla—Lucy must complete her mission to halt Britain’s conquest of Earth before the empire can expand outward into the galaxy. It’s an exhilarating example of alternate history, weaving classic characters into a narrative that’s as bombastically entertaining as it is thoughtful. Ward also commendably finds time for nuanced explorations of discrimination based on gender, sexuality, race, and origin in the midst of the thrilling espionage plot. This deeply satisfying conclusion is a win for series fans. (Sept.)