ARC Review: The Kraken King (Parts I, II & III) by Meljean Brook ★★★★

The Kraken King Part I: The Kraken King and the Scribbling Spinster (Iron Seas, #4.1)The Kraken King and the Scribbling Spinster by Meljean Brook
Genre: Steampunk Romance
Series: Iron Seas #4.1
Publication Date: April 15th 2014
ISBN: 9781101639207
Page Count: 98
Rating: ★★★★
Review Copy: ARC
Reviewed by: Lynsey
Buy Link: AMAZON
Synopsis: A former smuggler and thief, Ariq—better known as the Kraken King—doesn’t know what to make of the clever, mysterious woman he rescues from an airship besieged by marauders. Unsure if she’s a spy or a pawn in someone else’s game, Ariq isn’t about to let her out of his sight until he finds out…

After escaping her fourth kidnapping attempt in a year, Zenobia Fox has learned to vigilantly guard her identity. While her brother Archimedes is notorious for his exploits, Zenobia has had no adventures to call her own—besides the stories she writes. But when she jumps at the chance to escape to the wilds of Australia and acquire research for her next story, Zenobia quickly discovers that the voyage will be far more adventurous than any fiction she could put to paper…

Part I

Well that's certainly one way to kick off a series - by throwing your heroine headlong off an airship! Part one in this eight-part serial offers a great introduction to heroine Zenobia Fox, who immediately proves herself brave, determined, yet strangely lacking in self-confidence. We also meet Ariq, aka The Kraken king, who was in the right place at the right time and offers refuge to our plucky heroine and crew. Sexual tension is rife between the pair, but trust is another matter. And the big questions posed by this opener to the serial: just who is destroying airships in Ariq's territory, and why? And what is Zenobia Fox (or is it "Geraldine"?) hiding?



The Kraken King Part II: The Kraken King and the Abominable Worm (A Novel of the Iron Seas)The Kraken King and the Abominable Worm by Meljean Brook
Genre: Steampunk Romance
Series: Iron Seas #4.2
Publication Date: April 22nd 2014
Page Count: 98
Rating: ★★★★
Review Copy: ARC
Reviewed by: Lynsey
Buy Link: AMAZON
Synopsis: A former smuggler and thief, Ariq—better known as the Kraken King—doesn’t know what to make of the clever, mysterious woman he rescues from an airship besieged by marauders. Unsure if she’s a spy or a pawn in someone else’s game, Ariq isn’t about to let her out of his sight until he finds out…

After escaping her fourth kidnapping attempt in a year, Zenobia Fox has learned to vigilantly guard her identity. While her brother Archimedes is notorious for his exploits, Zenobia has had no adventures to call her own—besides the stories she writes. But when she jumps at the chance to escape to the wilds of Australia and acquire research for her next story, Zenobia quickly discovers that the voyage will be far more adventurous than any fiction she could put to paper…

Part II

Tensions are high in this second part of The Kraken King serial after Zenobia overhears something not meant for her ears. All the tentative trust built between herself and Ariq is seemingly shattered. Can it be rebuilt? Well, perhaps if they could stay out of danger for more than a few minutes! Secondary characters feature more prominently in this second part, establishing several intriguing subplots. And as ever, Stempunk worldbuilding elements are top notch. Excellent!


The Kraken King Part III: The Kraken King and the Fox's Den (A Novel of the Iron Seas)
The Kraken King and the Fox's Den by Meljean Brook
Genre: Steampunk Romance
Series: Iron Seas #4.3
Publication Date: April 29th 2014
Page Count: 98
Rating: ★★★★
Review Copy: ARC
Reviewed by: Lynsey
Buy Link: AMAZON
Synopsis: After a harrowing escape, Zenobia, Ariq, and their company take refuge in a gold rush town—but their temporary port is just a respite before traveling to the dangerous smugglers’ dens. Ariq is determined to uncover the men responsible for the threat to Krakentown, even if it means confronting the notorious den lords.

But when he discovers evidence in Zenobia’s letters connecting her to the Horde rebellion, he realizes that the threat is far greater than he had suspected. His loyalties torn, Ariq must distance himself from the fascinating woman he desperately wants to hold closer.

Stunned and hurt by Ariq’s inexplicable coldness, Zenobia prepares to leave the dens and continue her journey to the Red City. But in the smugglers’ dens, danger lurks around every corner, and all of her protection is gone…

REVIEW

Part III

Things in the romance department are heating up in this third entry to The Kraken King serial. And it's a very welcome development! Both Ariq and Zenobia are endearing and interesting characters, and the tension between them is palpable. Can Ariq's bluntness and shameless honesty break down Zenobia's inhibitions after such a blow to her pride? I can't wait for part four to find out!

4 Stars ★★★★
All copies were provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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