Publisher: Westmarch Publishing (October 2014)
Length: 20 pages
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.
A swashbuckling steampunk short centering on Romulus Buckle’s early years abroad a zeppelin. Nope, it isn’t the Pneumatic Zeppelin, but the trading zeppelin Bromhead, where Romulus finally understands the true cost of being an airman.
This one starts off with a bang. Literally. Pirates having sprung a surprise attack on the heavily loaded trading airship, nearly destroying the officers with a huge barrage on the lighter-than-air craft. Romulus, of course, is caught in the thick of the confusion, trying to keep the zeppelin floating and then hurrying off to confront the pirates who begin to board her.
This is our young heroes first taste of true combat aboard a zeppelin, and he is filled with anxiety, adrenaline, and determination to show the crew that he has both the courage and leadership skills to live up to his position as 2nd lieutenant.
As is always the case with Mr. Preston’s Pneumatic Zeppelin stories, the descriptions of the airships, the swashbuckling fighting, and general steampunk details are amazing, making you feel like you are standing right beside Romulus as he wields his sword and fires his black bang powder gun in the Snow World. And as the swashbuckling tale continues to escalate, it really is difficult to slow down until you eventually reach the last page.
Nope, I’m not a steampunk aficionado, but any zeppelin story penned by Mr. Preston is on my list of must-reads. So while I’m waiting on book three of the Chronicles of the Pneumatic Zeppelin, this one really hit the spot, and I’d encourage everyone out there to pick up this series and test it out. I really think you’ll enjoy it . . . especially if you’re a sucker for zeppelins like me.