I’m reading a good book these days: Gears of a Mad God: A Steampunk Lovecraft Adventure, by Brent Nichols. It’s a free eBook I found on the Kobo Books website when I was looking for something else. It’s the first book in a series, so, obviously, the idea here is that if I enjoy this first book for free, I’ll be tempted to buy the rest. Fair enough.
Gears of a Mad God takes place in the 1920s. Coleen is an unladylike lady with a passion and talent for machinery. She travels to Vancouver, Canada following the mysterious death of an uncle she hardly knew, and soon finds herself in the middle of a battle against a sinister cult.
I’m 70% through the eBook. My only quibble is that I don’t get a sense of time in the story. People don’t speak like I’d imagine people in the 1920s would speak. I don’t get a feeling of antiquity. And, so far, there’s nothing I’d call “steampunk” in it. Still, it’s a good read, full of adventure, set in a city I don’t read about often.
What I was looking for, and found, on the Kobo Books website, was The Left Hand of Darkness, by Ursula K. Le Guin. I’d read it a long time ago, loved it, and something made me think of it recently. We have a physical copy of it, somewhere in our apartment, and I’m sure the library has copies, but I wanted a copy for my eReader. I don’t plan on reading it right away, but I wanted a reminder that it’s there on my to-read list. Maybe that doesn’t make sense – I could just find our copy and carry it around with me – but it’ll be there whenever I get around to reading it. That’s one benefit of an eReader, I’ve found. Books I mean to read are there in my hand, reminding me that I should read them. Such was the case with A Princess of Mars.
I was reading A Princess of Mars, by Edgar Rice Burroughs, when I started Gears of a Mad God. I was a huge fan of the “John Carter on Mars” series when I was a teenager. I even had a wall map of Barsoom. I knew it was pulp fiction, not great literature, back then, but I didn’t care – I had fun reading the series back then. I found a free eBook version on Project Gutenberg a year or two ago, and it’s been sitting on my eReader, reminding me that I should read it.
I got 35% through A Princess of Mars and realized that it just wasn’t drawing me in like it did in my teenage years. Then Gears of a Mad God came along, and John Carter got set aside for now.