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Steampunk Review: A Conspiracy of Alchemists by Liesel Schwarz

A Conspiracy of Alchemists by Liesel Schwarz (The Chronicle of Light and Shadow #1)

Egalley thanks to Del Ray

Synopsis from Goodreads
LEAVE IT TO CHANCE. Eleanor “Elle” Chance, that is—the intrepid heroine of this edgy new series that transforms elements of urban fantasy, historical adventure, and paranormal romance into pure storytelling gold.
In a Golden Age where spark reactors power the airways, and creatures of Light and Shadow walk openly among us, a deadly game of Alchemists and Warlocks has begun.

When an unusual cargo drags airship-pilot Elle Chance into the affairs of the mysterious Mr. Marsh, she must confront her destiny and do everything in her power to stop the Alchemists from unleashing a magical apocalypse.

Amazon  US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | The Book Depository US/UK | Fishpond


* * *
 Don't get me wrong, A Conspiracy of Alchemists is a book not without its merits. It's got great gadgets, features a cool female pilot, an honest to God helicopter powered by steam and a crazy bunch of megalomaniacs bent on changing the world.

I was prepared if not love but at least like this book, instead it simply failed to deliver.

That is the core problem of this read. It has no shortage of great ideas but doesn't follow them through, so you quickly lose interest. I really had to force myself to keep reading because my attention kept wondering.

The plot is loosely held together. I didn't see the point in alliances that were forming without obvious mutual targets. I didn't understand The Order's lack of willingness to do something in a face a of a great threat they were facing... The main villain is hardly in the picture, but instead we have an obvious sidekick of his, gloating over the main heroine in a cliche cackling speech. The end is as anticlimactic as it gets as well.

Eleanor is a nice enough girl, March is an interesting brooding Warlock, and the author has all these intriguing characters who seem to get wasted away for nothing. Aleix and The Countess, I am talking about you! There is no spark or some sort of connection between two main characters as well, and oh boy, Houston, we've got problems!

It really is a shame, but A Conspiracy of Alchemists despite its beautiful cover and synopsis is a mess lacking a strong plot and coherency despite its fantastic ideas. The potential is there, but it needs a lot of work. I do sincerely hope that the author will continue writing and improving and I wish her best of luck. 

Despite plenty of positive reviews on Goodreads and from fellow bloggers, this book just wasn't for me, which makes me feel sad and jaded.

* * *
Очень разачарована очередным стимпанковским романом. И как жалко ведь! Заговор Алхимиков - это список замечательных идей, которых автору не удалось воплотить в какой-либо смысловой сюжет, и в этом лежит основная проблема книги.

Вроде всё есть для формулы успеха - волевая героиня пилот со скрытыми магическими способностями, волшебник, помогающий ей найти похищенного отца-изобретателя, секретные сообщества Алхимиков и Волшебников, пытающихся захватить власть над миром с помощью дельфийского Оракла, даже вампиры и парижские зелёные феи, прячущиеся в бутылках с абсентом...

Но нет, автор бросается из одной идеи в другую, теряет к ним интерес и не доводит ни одну до конца. У Марча и Элли несмотря на приключения друг с другом не ощущается никаких искорок или даже интересных разговоров, злодеи смехотворны, союзники бездействуют, а интересные персонажи размениваются ни на что до того, как к ним успеваешь привыкнуть. 

И жалко и смешно и не стоит тратить время на почтение пока автор как следует не отточит перо.

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