Starving Review: The Legend of The Engineer: A New Year’s Holiday Tale by Lori Alden Holuta


The Legend of The Engineer: A New Year’s Holiday Tale by Lori Alden Holuta (Amazon, Goodreads)

This week, we are serving up short stories in the Starving Review kitchen.  The Legend of The Engineer is a short tale set in the world of The Brassbright Chronicles, which we have been served a meal from before.  The first was a bright, cheery steampunk dish for younger readers.  Will this small slice from that same cake taste as good or will it be diminished by the smaller portion?

As the pneumatic table service sets the plates, let us recall the Starving Review bylaws:

  1. I attempt to rate every book from the perspective of a fan of the genre
  2. I attempt to make every review as spoiler-free as possible

As with all my examinations of short works, I will endeavor to keep my critiques as brief.  Legend matches the delightfully charming style of its bigger sister, delivering a breezy, shiny steampunk experience.  I found it fun and a nice change of pace from many darker tomes out there, as well as being a clear read, something that would be good for the younger audience it aims to feed.

One thing of particular note is how ‘real’ Legend helps make its world feel.  There is a sense of history and logic (albeit logic through the lens of airships and clockwork robots) that makes the story easy to believe and invest in.  Throughout, it never loses sight of that history or its underlying sense of wonder and fun.  Legend’s look at the Brassbright world’s holiday tradition would make it an especially nice holiday read.

In summation, The Legend of The Engineer delivers a delightful and flavorful bite of steampunk cake for the younger reader.  I would highly recommend it to fans of the genre of any age as a holiday tale, but especially to the younger readers.  It isn’t too simple for adults, but it also isn’t too complex for children while not talking down to them either.

FINAL VERDICT: ***** (A delightful and flavorful bite of steampunk cake for the younger reader!)

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