Title – Free-Wrench
Author – Joseph Lallo
Genre – Science Fiction, Steampunk
Length – 153 Pages
Publication – July 2014
My Rating –5/5 Stars
The islands of Caldara are a shining jewel in a rather bleak world. A terrible calamity in the past had blanketed much of the world with a toxic “fug.” Those who survived were forced to take to the mountains and the skies in wondrous airships. Life has since been a struggle, with only the most ruthless and crafty able to survive. To spare themselves the same fate, the Calderans erected a battery of guns to fend off the airships of the mainland. They isolated themselves from the madness of the world, choosing instead to focus on the pursuits of art and creativity. Few believe the technologically advanced but socially barbarous outsiders have anything to offer. Amanita Graus, though, is hoping that they do.
Nita’s mother has lost her livelihood and perhaps soon her life to a terrible disease. Already the black sheep of the family for embracing engineering rather than art, Nita resolves to leave the safety of her home and do whatever it takes to find a cure. For a price, the bizarre crew of an airship called The Wind Breaker are willing to grant her a meeting with their mysterious benefactors, and thus a chance to procure the one thing with a chance to save her mother.
Free-Wrench follows Nita’s adventures in a steampunk world of airships and lunatics. Helping her in her journey are an eccentric crew of smugglers; the gruff Cap’n Mack, the simple but enthusiastic Lil and Coop, the arrogant marksman Gunner, the surly surgeon Butch, and the irritable mascot Wink. To survive and find what she seeks she’ll need to earn their trust, follow their rules, and meet face to face with the people who pull the strings of their society.
I’ve had this book on my TBR list for a while and I thought it was about time I gave the author my attention. I’m very glad I did.
Free-Wrench follows Nita, she’s good with machines..I think she could probably fix anything given the time.
The book starts off giving a little background to Nita’s life.. she works in the steamworks which is a very demanding job and we quickly learn how good she is.
A couple of events happen that conspire to change her life forever. Her mother has an illness which can’t be cured and by chance see gets to meet some smugglers.. these smugglers know a lot about the world and know a cure is out there..but it will be a high price if they can get it for her at all.
Nita is happy to pay the price but doesn’t trust the smugglers so adds her services to the bargain in order to keep an eye on things.. this is when things quickly escalate.
Loyalties are tested, relationships forged in the heat of battle and secrets are revealed..It appears those who pull strings hold all the cards..but for how long?
This was a very enjoyable tale with airships and gun battles and one very interesting/fun and nosy lead character.
What made the tale even better was the crew of the airship, the Wind Breaker. Each have their own reason for being on board and we learn a little about each throughout the tale. The interactions between the characters is really what made me enjoy the book, fun at times then at others deathly serious.
This is a great introduction to a series which I fully intend to keep reading. I can only say I’m sorry it took me so long 🙂
It’s a fast paced, well written, easy flowing, wild ride of a tale suitable for young adults up and at 153 pages it won’t take you long to be hooked in.
Best of all you can pick the book up on Amazon for free!
Have a look and tell me what you make of it. Please do let me know if you’ve read the other books in the series, I’d love to know what you think of them.