Little Wicked Things by Susan Brassfield Cogan

Little Wicked Things by Susan Brassfield Cogan
Publisher: CoganBooks
Genre: Paranormal, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Historical
Length: Full Length (283 Pages)
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by Cyclamen

In the 19th century there were new marvels almost every year—steam engines, photography, telegraphs, trains. But after the Great Disaster everything seems to veer off in another direction. Rumors of wireless communication and electrical energy all die out. The marvels stop.

Then another disaster strikes—the assassination of elderly Queen Victoria and two of her sons. For a while the world collapses into mad chaos. Parliament is dissolved and Queen Victoria’s grandson, Prince Albert becomes the heir apparent. The Regency Committee rules with an iron fist, but they bring peace and order back into the nation.

Then, quietly at first, a third disaster. The monsters come.

Miriam Walker hunts them.

Miriam Walker is a strong, likeable protagonist. She is a widow who has lost her three children, one of them killed by the Knockerboys, monsters who have entered into this alternate London of 1899. As a result, she has taken on the mission of protecting all those she can and killing as many of the monsters as possible.

I enjoy thinking about possible alternate realities. The plot of Little Wicked Things sets up a very believable and frightening alternative to Victorian London. The nineteenth century was one of tremendous scientific changes. In this version, people tinkered with transmutation, with disastrous results. Miriam comes across a journal which details the experiments, a journal which she has promised to destroy. Unfortunately before she can do that, she is captured.

The plot is well-paced, with the tension building as Miriam uncovers more and more about several different plot lines. She has always worked alone, but now discovers that she must help others and in turn be helped by them. She needs to work with those whom she normally has considered to be immoral. She learns a lot about the way others struggle to live. She also develops a greater hatred of those who are called the Four Hundred, haughty powerful aristocrats who are currently in charge of the nation.

I was hooked from the opening page and as the tension built I found that I couldn’t put the book down. I went down many dangerous paths with Miriam, watching as she fights evil and finds kindness in surprising places. I liked the fact that Miriam is willing to learn about those she had formerly just judged. She develops and changes as the novel progresses, but one thing never changes and that is her determination to hunt the Knockerboys.

Readers who enjoy steampunk fantasy are sure to be captivated by Miriam and her quest for a better world.

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