Review: The Kraken King Part I by Meljean Brook

Posted April 19, 2014 by Jen in Rating A, Reviews, Romance, Steampunk Fiction Tags: , , , , ,

The Kraken King Serialized Novel Reviews

Welcome to my nine-part review special of The Kraken King by Meljean Brook. The book is being released as an eight-part serialized novel. Each Saturday (or Friday) after the release of a part of the novel, I will share my review. In addition, on June 9, 2014, after the entire book is released, I will share a special review and host a giveaway for the awesome Kraken King Poster shown above!

Today I share Part I. Because each part was written as a specific piece within a larger framework, each piece is rated based on the quality of the work with respect to where and when it falls within the larger story, as well as my enjoyment of the story within the context of a larger tale. The rating is not based as if this part is solely a stand alone book.

Note: Although these are separate and distinct adventures, the individual parts are NOT stand alone stories. The series is intended to be read in whole from Part I to Part VIII, and leaving out earlier parts is akin to skipping chapters in a book.

The Kraken King Part I:
The Kraken King and the Scribbling Spinster
Author: Meljean Brook

Jen Twimom
Rating: A-

What I’m Talking About:

The first part of The Kraken King introduces readers to our two main characters: Zenobia and Ariq. Zenobia Fox, author of the famous Archimedes Fox adventures, is traveling to Australia with a childhood friend and wife of an ambassador, Helene Auger. While making the trip, Zenobia keeps an alternate identity that she is the widow, therefore allowing her to live alone and enjoy freedom rather than being viewed as a spinster.

Once the leader of rebel armies, Ariq Noyan, aka the Kraken King, is now governor of Krakentown. It is evident that he rules with honesty and integrity. When a band of marauders bring down Zenobia’s airship, Ariq and his brother take action to save the passengers. Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time the marauders have destroyed an airship off the coast of Krakentown, and the pending repercussions could spell the end of Krakentown and its citizens.

Although the reader is introduced to a number of supporting characters throughout these first few chapters, I never felt overwhelmed or confused. The world-building is tight and absolutely riveting. Granted, I am very familiar with the Iron Seas world having read all of the preceding stories, but almost everything about The Kraken King is unique to this story. The author does a wonderful job creating an immediate connection to the characters and the story.

I completely enjoyed Zenobia and Ariq’s first meeting when he helps rescue her. I adore how impressed Ariq is with Zenobia… How he is sexually attracted to her, but it’s her humor and intelligence that draws him in. I also appreciate that having recognized Ariq to be the notorious Kraken King, Zenobia does not discredit him, and although she remains leery, is open to learning all she can from Ariq. The pair have an immediate, innocent attraction that is so much more than physical.

It is amazing how deeply and utterly engrossed I was by the end of the first part. The story quickly pulled me in, and after just a few short chapters, I was already emotionally tied to Zenobia, Ariq, and their journey. The author creates such energy and focus on the main characters that I have no interest in finding out what is going on outside their immediate world.

The individual adventure of Part I is good, but it’s evident that it’s not over by a long shot. It doesn’t end with a cliffhanger, but rather leaves the reader primed for further adventures. As the first part in a larger story, The Kraken King and the Scribbling Spinster is written superbly: it drew me in and I want more, yet I was given enough meat to keep me satisfied for the week.

My Rating:  A- Enjoyed A Lot


About the Book:

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…

Release Date: April 15, 2014
Intermix (Penguin)
Iron Seas #4.1
ASIN: #B00HZ1E530
Steampunk Romance, Serialized Novel
Book Source: Publisher/NetGalley

Purchase Info:
The Kraken King Part I (Iron Seas #4.1)

Reviews in the Series:
“The Blushing Bounder” by Meljean Brook (Wild & Steamy) (Iron Seas #0.4)

“Here There Be Monsters” by Meljean Brook (Burning Up) (Iron Seas #0.5)
The Iron Duke by Meljean Brook (Iron Seas #1)
“Mina Wentworth and the Invisible City” by Meljean Brook (Iron Seas #1.5)
Heart of Steel by Meljean Brook (Iron Seas #2)
“Tethered” by Meljean Brook (Iron Seas #2.5)
Riveted by Meljean Brook (Iron Seas #3)
“Wrecked” by Meljean Brook (Fire & Frost) (Iron Seas #3.4)
“Salvage” by Meljean Brook (Enthralled) (Iron Seas #3.5)