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Homunculus By James P. Blaylock,

  • Title: Homunculus
  • Author: James P. Blaylock
  • ISBN: 9780857689825
  • Page: 324
  • Format: Paperback
  • It is the late 19th century and a mysterious airship orbits through the foggy skies Its terrible secrets are sought by many, including the Royal Society, a fraudulent evangelist, a fiendish vivisectionist, an evil millionaire and an assorted group led by the scientist and explorer Professor Langdon St Ives Can St Ives keep the alien homunculus out of the claws of the vIt is the late 19th century and a mysterious airship orbits through the foggy skies Its terrible secrets are sought by many, including the Royal Society, a fraudulent evangelist, a fiendish vivisectionist, an evil millionaire and an assorted group led by the scientist and explorer Professor Langdon St Ives Can St Ives keep the alien homunculus out of the claws of the villainous Ignacio Narbondo
    Homunculus It is the late th century and a mysterious airship orbits through the foggy skies Its terrible secrets are sought by many including the Royal Society a fraudulent evangelist a fiendish vivisectio

    One thought on “Homunculus”

    1. 3.5 starsORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature Does the night seem uncommonly full of dead men and severed heads to you Langdon St Ives is a man of science and a member of the Royal Society With the help of his dependable and discreet manservant, St Ives prefers to spend his time secretly building a spaceship in his countryside silo But currently he s in London to help his friend Jack Owlesby recover a wooden box containing the huge emerald Jack s father left him for an inheritance Things get [...]

    2. It was good, it was interesting, but there were just too many people running around doing too many different things for me to care to much about whether they succeeded or not, so I never really felt the pull to keep reading that books often have.

    3. It was my turn to pick for book club, and wanting to pick something different, I thought of this steampunk classic that I had already loaded onto my Kindle but hadn t yet read It was short at around 250 pages, it was available for 2.79 on the Kindle, and it had won a Phillip K Dick award for distinguished science fiction So why then, out of seven people, did only two of us, myself included, manage to finish it Well for one, it had a hell of an in medias res opening I mean the story really should [...]

    4. I m a huge fan of James Blaylock, so my reviews of his work are going to be very biased Homunculus is a dizzy romp through a fictional late 19th century London populated by daffy gentleman Natural Philosophers, grizzled but upstanding inventors and adventurers, wicked and perverted mad scientists, and the tout hearted and unflappable women who support them the good guys, not the creeps The characters are pretty archetypal and typical of a story of this genre as, say, written by H Rider Haggard o [...]

    5. The plot takes place in a strange magical steampunky Old London Town The streets are walked by preachers and zombies and zombie preachers The skies are ridden by a skeleton pirate in a gondola under an airship blessed by a nearly perpetual motion device There are alarms and excursions to the countyside where a moon rocket launch goes a little arwy A strange small man with a lot of power is hidden in a box somewhere, so is an emerald, so is an aeration device for a moon rocket Who has which box C [...]

    6. Homunculus by James P Blaylock is a part of the A Tale of Langdon St Ives series Now, for some people who aren t familiar with James P Blaylock, let s just say that he is often called a founding father of the steampunk genre In other words, if you re into steampunk, you need to at least get some Blaylock into your reading list But I digress The point is that Homunculus is a well written book that will give your imagination a great workout Set in Victorian London, an alternative steam powered tal [...]

    7. Fair warning this book has one of the steepest in media res opening I ever got the chance to read Meaning, I think I understood next to nothing for the first thirty pages or so, and it only started to slowly come together after a few chapters since I tried to re read the beginning after I had finished, I ll say that the problem did not only lay in my limited capacity to focus the opening really tosses a huge number of minute details about events and people and things that the readers cn t possib [...]

    8. A plethora of plots that drive you to ask that question that is on everyone s mind does the night seem uncommonly full of dead men and severed heads An entertaining journey up and under and all around My second St Ives adventure looking forward to the next.

    9. This book had everything that intrigued me multiple parties trying to find a mysterious airship, puzzle boxes containing weird artifacts and even the living dead Unfortunately this book delivered on none of the promise The characters heroes were hard to differentiate from one another, the villains were too numerous with shallow motives, and the central airship and it s mysterious passenger touchdown at the very end of the story barely long enough for a cup if tea While the concept was good, the [...]

    10. Ghoulish, Picaresque, London Steampunk Farce Within the gondola, looking for all the world as if he were piloting the moon itself, was a rigid figure in a cocked hat, gripping the wheel, his legs planted widely as if set to counter an ocean swell The wind tore at his tattered coat, whipping it out behind him and revealing the dark curve of a ribcage, empty of flesh, ivory moonlight glowing in the crescents of air between the bones His wrists were manacled to the wheel, which itself was lashed to [...]

    11. Corpses are animated in 1870s London by a hunchbacked fiend A man sees himself as a new messiah A blimp piloted by a skeleton stays aloft for years A space ship is invented, and possibly a perpetual motion machine A tiny man said to be from another world is kept in a small box, the harnessing of his considerable powers a tug of war in a deadly fun game between armchair adventurers inventors and baddies and their weird science.Yes, it s James P Blaylock fun As usual, Blaylock, whose typical ven [...]

    12. This is a tricky one If I rated this book just on how easy and enjoyable it was it would be a 2 BUT I know that is as much me as anything and I have read other James Blaylock books which I have really enjoyed so I am giving it a three star because to use that famous quote its not you, its me So where did it all wrong well its hard to put my finger on it, from protagonists I just could not associate with, I never really felt like rooting for the hero or even who the hero was , to the style of wri [...]

    13. Anyone who regularly reads Steampunk novels will already be aware of James P Blaylock s status as one of the big three writers in the genre, along with K W Jeter and Tim Powers Going back and rereading their work is always rewarding, but it becomes all the interesting having read the work of contemporary steampunk authors It s easy to see how influenced they are by the greats as the basic building blocks of a good steampunk story are still the same today Evident throughout the Langdon St Ives s [...]

    14. The first book I read by Blaylock wasAll The Bells on Earth All The Bells On EarthThat book immediately won me over It was an exquisite example of what Dark Fiction or Urban Fantasy, or the new Weird, or whatever you call the genre can do Unfortunately, since that book I just haven t found another Blaylock book as good.This book wasn t bad, and I guess I judged it two ways.If I judged it on its own, I probably would have given it a 2 It starts slow, I didn t really find myself enjoying it until [...]

    15. James P Baylock s novel featuring the inventor adventurer Langdon St Ives, has all the usual ingredients.hips, bad guys, good guys, evil scientist and of course zombies, necessary for a steampunk inspired tale.This novel reminded me of a Monty Python episode Just the whole story seemed so madcap and zany Huge carp, blood pudding eating zombies, a hunchback, reanimation of the dead and of course the comical scene of three different groups trying to steal the same box The story is not deeply writt [...]

    16. I ll give you that my take on the book is probably due to reader failure it did win an award back in the 80s after all But to stick up for myself here, I do enjoy certain key points in my novels character development, plot, and coherence to name but a few At the end of the day, I can even see why many who approach the novel from a literary standpoint could call it genius since it is an amalgamation of loosely related parts sewn together to create something monstrous Unfortunately, I saw none of [...]

    17. This is the second of Blaylock s adventures of Langdon St Ives books I ve read The first being the Ayeslford Skull I enjoyed the former slightly , but this has all the things that made that one enjoyable, and so was quite enjoyable itself If you haven t read any of the series, they re set in victorian england with a sort of fantasy steampunk sensibility A bit like Alan Moore s league of extraordinary gentlemen Anyway its basically a fun and goofy adventure story involving a villainous hunchback [...]

    18. Does the night seem uncommonly full of dead men and severed heads to you Langdon St Ives is a man of science and a member of the Royal Society With the help of his dependable and discreet manservant, St Ives prefers to spend his time secretly building a spaceship in his countryside silo But currently he s in London to help his friend Jack Owlesby recover a wooden box containing the huge emerald Jack s father left him for an inheritance Things get confusing when it s discovered that there are sev [...]

    19. I had problems getting into this book Partly it was the head space I was in, but the book also feels like you ve joined it in progress Characters are introduced as if you already know them, the plot seems as if you should already have a grasp on what s going on I had to read the summary before I felt I understood the plot, and I was almost a hundred pages in at that point.The book does pick up in the middle and I started to get into it, but then it loses momentum at the end again There are too m [...]

    20. This book gets zero stars I read half the novel and still don t know what was going on And let me be clear I have fantastic reading comprehension.

    21. In my opinion, for what it s worth , this was a disappointing read It may have all the elements of a great steampunk novel, but, from reading this, one wouldn t know It certainly isn t, to quote Tim Powers, e funniest, fastest, most colourful and grotesquely horrifying novel that could ever be written about Victorian London There wasn t a funny or horrifying line in the book.It s saving grace, hence the solitary star rating , was that it read quickly, to put on the pile for the charity shop What [...]

    22. I should have hated this kind of book yet I found myself utterly charmed by this Victoriana soup Many times I was a little unsure of the plot logic but the level of description was so dense I let it all roll over me.

    23. Not entirely sure why this is classified as steampunk Didn t like it The plot was extremely disjointed and too many plot points were never adequately explained, leaving the reader in the dark as to what exactly was happening and why.Other difficulties I had were the apparent nonchalance with which the public accepted the presence of the shambling zombies handing out tracts The revivification of the dead was clearly some kind of breakthrough by Narbondo Surely this means that there should have be [...]

    24. Does the night seem uncommonly full of dead men and severed heads to you Langdon St Ives is a man of science and a member of the Royal Society With the help of his dependable and discreet manservant, St Ives prefers to spend his time secretly building a spaceship in his countryside silo But currently he s in London to help his friend Jack Owlesby recover a wooden box containing the huge emerald Jack s father left him for an inheritance Things get confusing when it s discovered that there are sev [...]

    25. There is something about Blaylock s writing that gums up the works in my head It just doesn t flow smoothly for me It took me than three weeks to read this one and the exact same amount of time to read The Digging Leviathan , but that is not to say that someone else might not find the actual act of reading the book fulfilling.Now that it is read I get to enjoy it in hindsight It is full of dark humour and characters whose worldview is clearly skewed and yet inhabit a world where supernatural a [...]

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