Book Review: Nimbus
(Read on Kindle)
By Austin King and B.J. Keeton
Jude Finley is a new recruit aboard the Gangly Dirigible, an airship that extracts water from rainclouds. While working aboard the ship, Jude and his friends uncover a secret which may or may not help them against a growing uprising that could spell doom for everyone on the planet.
Meanwhile, Demetrius Rucca, the wheelchair-bound son of a prominent religious leader, begins recruiting followers for his own subversive cause. As allegiances are sworn to him and his followers grow, he begins to discover the new powers that lie within him. This power could be the salvation Demetrius is looking for–or it could be the destruction of the known world. (Courtesy of goodreads.com)
Adult Point of View
Nimbus is the first complete series that I read on a Kindle. Reading a book on a Kindle was a different experience. I noticed that I was more forgiving of typos than I am in a printed book, perhaps because we are accustomed to skip over errors in our texts and emails. Another electronic book that I started had such poor writing I erased it within a few pages; helping me determine that I still require creative ideas and good writing. I also enjoyed the convenience of being able to take a light-weight book with me anywhere I traveled.
Steampunk is a fun genre because the technology plays a role almost as if it is a character. In Nimbus the technology defines how people live; there are those who are deep within the belly of the old cities barely subsisting, those who wrestle with the technology to provide the essential clean water for both the masses and the elite, and finally the ruling class – literally with their heads in the clouds- where technology is a badge of their power.
Jude is a foil to Demetrius. Jude epitomizes hard work, honesty and a genuine love for humanity. Demetrius is tortured, unstable and seeking the love of his father. Demetrius is the more complex character because his past could help us understand him, and want him to succeed. At what point do we judge Demetrius for his current actions rather than forgive him for his current actions? There were a few moments when I was reminded of The Foundation series by Asimov because of the classes and sociology of religion controlling the masses.
There is also a supernatural element, which gave cause to the rise of the technology in Nimbus. (I don’t want to spoil the role of the supernatural elements.) I was caught off guard by the supernatural element, but it was justified and added another layer of interest. Sometimes steampunk reads almost like magic, but this element was more in line with paranormal. I can’t say more or I will give too much away.
I enjoyed Nimbus, it was creative, complex and built logically. I would have been interested to see if the author could have woven a little more humor into the book. The entire series reads more like a single novel than four separate books. (However, that is one way to get over the middle book slump.) It was a pretty clean novel and could be read by young adults in high school.
3 out of 5 stars