The Aeronaut's Windlass

The Aeronaut's Windlass

eBook - 2015
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"Since time immemorial, the Spires have sheltered humanity, towering for miles over the mist-shrouded surface of the world. Within their halls, aristocratic houses have ruled for generations, developing scientific marvels, fostering trade alliances, and building fleets of airships to keep the peace. Captain Grimm commands the merchant ship, Predator. Fiercely loyal to Spire Albion, he has taken their side in the cold war with Spire Aurora, disrupting the enemy's shipping lines by attacking their cargo vessels. But when the Predator is severely damaged in combat, leaving captain and crew grounded, Grimm is offered a proposition from the Spirearch of Albion - to join a team of agents on a vital mission in exchange for fully restoring Predator to its fighting glory. And even as Grimm undertakes this dangerous task, he will learn that the conflict between the Spires is merely a premonition of things to come. Humanity's ancient enemy, silent for more than ten thousand years, has begun to stir once more. And death will follow in its wake."--from publisher
Publisher: New York : ROC, [2015]
ISBN: 9780698138001
Branch Call Number: eBook OverDrive
Characteristics: 1 online resource
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc

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IndyPL_SteveB Aug 17, 2019

Book One in the series “The Cinder Spires”

This is a rousing adventure and an exciting beginning to a totally new series by Butcher. He just throws us into the middle of the action without explanation or background for his world and story. It’s confusing for a couple of chapters but the characters grab you quickly and dash along the plotline with you; so even though there is no letup to catch your breath, you eventually figure out the background.

The world appears to be a far-future earth, ravaged by past wars or other catastrophe. Humans live in spire structures miles high above a deadly surface. Each spire is like a separate nation and sometimes competition between the spires turns into war. Since the surface is deadly, there are no armies, only the equivalent of navies and marines. There is no ocean but the “ocean” of air – the battles are fought with airships that look a lot like ocean warships and which travel on a combination of wind power, steam, and the power of the “ether.” In this book, ether is sort of a combination between electricity, magic, and “The Force” of Star Wars, a force than can be manipulated by technology (to power the airships or hand weapons) and that can be used by the minds of certain people with special abilities.

The action is non-stop; but what makes this book work is a large number of compelling characters, including an intelligent cat. Lots of fun.

Dec 27, 2018

at twice sold tales!

Oct 18, 2018

Absolutely enjoyed this book from beginning to end. I can not wait for the next in this series! I loved every character, from the Captain to the Cat to the Villain. The descriptive battle scenes had my heart racing.

Mar 18, 2018

Great characters that make you care about them and great action/adventure. I want to know more about Captain Grimm and the strange mysterious world under the Spires. I'm a cat owner and it's hilarious how Butcher "gets" the whole cat-ego-superiority thing. Cats aside, this is a great story without the superfluous sex scenes so many authors feel obliged to throw in. I read for entertainment and enjoy most types of SciFi and urban fantasy. Jim Butcher, Brandon Sanderson, Nancy Kerr and Sarah Hoyt are a few whom I consider to be just plain GOOD writers no matter what so-called genre the experts put them in.

ChristchurchLib Oct 18, 2016

Steampunk. Aboard the AMS Predator, airship captain Francis Grimm defends Spire Albion from attacks by rival Spire Aurora. Tapped for a top-secret military mission, Grimm teams up with members of the Spirearch's Guard, including rebellious noblewoman Gwendolyn Lancaster; her dashing cousin Benedict; etherealist Master Ferus and his apprentice Folly; and orphan Bridget Tagwynn and her feline guardian, Rowl. With its thrilling blend of espionage and high-altitude battles, this fast-paced, action-packed opening volume of the Cinder Spires series should entertain fans of Naomi Novik's Temeraire books.

Oct 05, 2016

Good book, but I wasn't wowed.

The characterization was phenomenal. I liked Folly the most. She addresses others rather by speaking to a jar of crystals. There were numerous other great characters. What's unfortunate is that they're almost fighting each other for spotlight. It's packed with action and comedic humor (mostly in the form of cats I_I). The ship battles were epic.

The cats...Yes, this book is filled with cat characters and dialogue. I actually thought the cats were done quite well. Like, exactly what I think cats would think and say given their circumstances. Though, I'm not sure it fits in this title? Something just wasn't right.

Lots of repetition. Lots of lines and well thought ways of wording things were generously re-used. Like a cat would think "how typical of a human to think that" or "of course a human couldn't land on their feet right". Though the line gets old after hearing it tens of times. The characters and setting provided multitudes of other opportunities to include humor or whatever other tone that the story called for, without being so repetitive. Even clever unique ways to metaphorically explain how a character turned their head (or likewise) for example, were re-used. It really stood out in a negative way.

Some of the writing nearly put the book in the Young Adult Fiction category. The brawl that was taking place between Bridget and Reginald was a key example. The inter-workings of the "Brawl Protocol" didn't make much sense at all. The ending could have been much, much better. Especially regarding as to 'where the characters were left off'. Would have liked to see them end in their appropriate setting. I wanted to see the author linger on some of the scenes a little more - Like Bridget's introduction.

I would have liked to see more of the lore of the world Butcher created. Especially that of the surface world. I'm hoping the sequel to this includes some surface world expedition. My review is a bit critical, but it really was a good book. Not great. Just...good, with amazing characters, and some annoying parts.

Jun 19, 2016

Looking forward to the next book in the series. Very character driven.

Apr 18, 2016

I love Jim Butcher. He's nailed urban fantasy with his Dresden Files novels, and was equally successful with the "lost Roman legion meets Pokemon" epic fantasy of Furies of Calderon. I think he's just as successful here with his new steampunk series. Steampunk can be a tough genre - it was kind of the hot thing for a little while, and so many entries into the genre are nothing more than stale cliche. While Butcher didn't entirely avoid cliche (petite, haughty tough girl Gwen, I'm looking at you), he's created a fun and fascinating world, populated with characters you can really care about. When you care about the characters, you race through the end of the novel, muttering "please don't die please don't die" under your breath because there's actual tension while your favorite characters are in danger. Also, there are talking cats, and everyone likes talking cats.

Jan 27, 2016

Wow, this is a great book! I am looking forward to the next one.

Jan 11, 2016

Butcher really delivers with this one, creating a new world that a reader can easily immerse themselves in.

I have always found his signature to be in managing a really solid blend of character development, humor, drama, world building, etc... in a very balanced manner. Everything seems very genuine, it is a fun world to be a part of.

For cat owners, you will thoroughly be able to identify with some of the characters in this book. For those that aren't cat people, don't let this comment scare you away from a great book, any and all will appreciate it, but there are some fun laughs I had for myself based on my experiences with my wife's cat.

Very much looking forward to the next installment, right up there along the Dresden Files for me in terms of quality.

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r229061 Oct 23, 2015

r229061 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over


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