Every Friday, we here @ Del Rey Spectra will place a 50 page excerpt of a selected title on Unbound Worlds. Whether it is science fiction, epic fantasy, alternate history, horror, urban fantasy, paranormal, the possibilities are endless.
This week we’re reading an exciting excerpt from A STUDY IN SILKS, the first book in Emma Jane Holloway’s new trilogy, The Baskerville Affair.
I know that any good editor—much like any good mommy—is supposed to love all her children equally. And I do love all my literary children; I do! But every now and then, one sneaks in that’s just…a little extra shiny, a little extra special. And for me, that is Emma Jane Holloway’s series, The Baskerville Affair, which kicks off in a few mere weeks with the miraculous A Study in Silks.
How can I describe this book in words as unique as the story itself? Well, here are a few words that will hopefully intrigue you. Sherlock Holmes’s niece, raised in Ploughman’s Circus as part of the Fabulous Flying Coopers until shoehorned into the gentry by her formidable grandmamma. Hidden magic. Creepy automatons. A lowly kitchen maid brutally slain while hiding a fortune in gemstones and gold. A snarky mechanical bird. A nefarious sorcerer. A Wagnerian opera-crushing mechanical squid. And this all just in the first four chapters!
Add in a grumpy mechanical mouse, powerful villains who will do anything for a profit, spectral dragons, self-aware artifacts, and a killer love triangle, and you begin to get a sense of the thing. This is a book and a series positively bursting with ideas and twists. Most authors would kill to get as much into 500 pages as Emma Jane Holloway packs into 50…and all with a plot as finely-tuned as the working of one of our heroine’s clockwork creations.
A Study in Silks is also enormously fun, infused with a keen sense of humor and laugh-out-loud funny lines in the middle of high drama. Whether you are a Sherlock fan or not—whether you like paranormal fantasy, romance, mystery or historical fiction—I guarantee you will find something to love in this book.
The first 50 pages follow as proof of my claims—and for those of you who become hooked, you need not wait until September 24th to enter this remarkable—and remarkably inventive!—world. A prequel story, “The Adventure of the Wollaston Ritual,” is also available for free online here [hyperlink this to the story] which introduces us to Evelina Cooper and her best friend, Imogen Roth, just as their tenure at the Wollaston Academy for Young Ladies is drawing to a close. But for Evelina—a secret magic user in a world dominated by steam-powered science—no finishing school graduation would be complete without a little zombie-induced mayhem to get the blood pumping.
Enjoy! You are in for a real treat.
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Please enjoy this excerpt of A STUDY IN SILKS by Emma Jane Holloway, on sale September 24th!