Frey is the captain of the Ketty Jay, leader of a small and highly dysfunctional band of layabouts. An inveterate womaniser and rogue, he and his gang make a living on the wrong side of the law, avoiding the heavily armed flying frigates of the Coalition Navy. With their trio of ragged fighter craft, they run contraband, rob airships and generally make a nuisance of themselves.
So a hot tip on a cargo freighter loaded with valuables seems like a great prospect for an easy heist and a fast buck. Until the heist goes wrong, and the freighter explodes. Suddenly Frey isn't just a nuisance anymore - he's public enemy number one, with the Coalition Navy on his tail and contractors hired to take him down.
But Frey knows something they don't. That freighter was rigged to blow, and Frey has been framed to take the fall. If he wants to prove it, he's going to have to catch the real culprit. He must face liars and lovers, dogfights and gunfights, Dukes and daemons.
It's going to take all his criminal talents to prove he's not the criminal they think he is ...
This slow-moving but inventive series starter from steampunk author Wooding (The Fade) introduces Darian Frey, captain of the Ketty Jay, and a varied gang of smalltime freebooters. When a routine heist goes horribly wrong, Frey is charged with murder and piracy and must flee from the authorities (and an old flame out for revenge). To make matters worse, Frey's crew owes him no loyalty; he's the captain only because he owns their aerium-fueled aircraft. It's up to Frey to keep them together long enough to figure out who set them up and why. As their secrets gradually emerge, the characters grow in depth and complexity, especially Crake, the angst-ridden daemonist, and Jez, the taciturn navigator. Beautifully crafted prose and some remarkably imaginative scenes prop up the sluggish plot, and Wooding's sprawling, multifaceted world and rough-and-tumble action will delight steampunk fans.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Reminds me of the TV show Firefly
A well written, entertaining story. A steampunk world that feels well rounded, but with plenty of scope to grow.
The dysfunctional crew of the Ketty Jay reminds me of the crew and passengers of the TV show Firefly. Crashing from disappointment to betrayal and back again, yet always just doing enough to keep their necks out of the noose.
Can’t recommend this enough to lovers of Steampunk, Firefly or just hopelessly doomed romantics.
This was the first book I read by Chris Wooding and it won't be the last. I have now read all three in the Ketty Jay series and have fallen in love with Captain Frey and his otherworldly crew. I hope to read more books based on Captain Frey and hope that "The Black Lung Captain" wasn't the last in this particular series of books. I am now going to start reading his other trilogy and see if I like it as much...we shall see.