The Iron Wyrm Affair – Lilith Saintcrow
When an irritable sorceress arrives on his doorstep in the middle of the night with her heavily armed Shield in tow, she is at first like everyone else Archibald Clare encounters, a puzzle first and a person second. But she wants more from him than his mentath’s brain of pure logic. Someone is killing the geniuses of Londinium, and the formidable Miss Bannon – sorceress of the Black Discipline and devoted servant of the Crown – is determined to find out why. What better bait to draw out the murderer than one of the few mentaths left alive…
This is the first book in the Bannon & Clare steampunk and sorcery series, introducing an alternative Britain where the spirit of the Empire rules through a vulnerable young human host and dragons writhe under the surface of the island. The characters are a bit one-note, and Saintcrow’s detail-heavy writing style is sometimes frustrating, but the ideas in this book are fantastic and there’s definitely rich ground for further stories in a very well realised world. It continues with The Red Plague Affair.