Karen’s Killer Book Bench: Dawn of Steam: Gods of the Sun by Jeffrey Cook with Sarah Symonds

読書  KAREN’S KILLER BOOK BENCH Welcome to Karen’s Killer Book Bench where readers can discover talented new authors and take a peek inside their wonderful books. This is not an age-filtered site so all book peeks are PG-13 or better. Come back and visit often. Happy reading!


By Jeffrey Cook with Sarah Symonds

Rejoin Gregory Conan Watts and the crew of the airship Dame Fortuna as they continue the adventure begun in Dawn of Steam: First Light.


February 1816

My Dearest Cordelia,

We have been deceived.

Both friends and strangers have been lying to us all along – the former with better cause than the latter, but it is no less jarring. As we deal with more and more international entanglement and expose more and more secrets, I am left with even more questions about the war, about commonly-accepted standards of our society, and about whether I am capable of being comfortable with certain responsibilities. Furthermore, this journey is not likely to end any time soon – assuming we can ever make it home at all.

All my love,

Gregory Conan Watts

Book Blurb

In 1816, Gregory Conan Watts’s chronicle of the adventures begun in Dawn of Steam: First Light continues – as does the Year Without a Summer. The crew of the airship Dame Fortuna travel to four continents and are embroiled in combat on three of them: conflict with New Spain in Britain’s American colonies, an ambush in Machu Picchu, and entanglement in the Maori Potato Wars in New Zealand. As they progress through darkened skies, Gregory gradually discovers that nothing at all was as he thought it was. All his assumptions are cast into doubt: what their orders are, which tales of foreign lands are true, and what parts of the social order as he knows it really are natural. Also in doubt is whether they will all survive the experience. 
Dawn of Steam: Gods of the Sun is an alternate-history, early-era Steampunk epistolary novel.

By Jeffrey Cook with Sarah Symonds


From the journals of Gregory Conan Watts,
January 24th, 1816
New Orleans, 29º57’N 090º04’W

Hope and help came from an unexpected source. We had suffered through the first few checks by the soldiers loyal enough to Col. York to be entrusted with checking in on us, enough to gain some idea of their schedule. When we had been here for a time, and I had almost started my letter a dozen times, only to stop myself each time, Miss Penn finally risked whispering to Miss Coltrane. She suggested that she still had her bodice knife, and if Miss Coltrane could get to it, they might be able to cut their bonds.

There were multiple difficulties with this, of course. Not only getting to the small blade, but also that even freed, we were in no position to fight our way out of the room or make an attempt at escape with our comrades in danger or captured. Miss Coltrane reminded her of all of this, but it was eventually agreed that she should try to get free, and with some greater options than simply sitting, we might be able to assess our slightly expanded options. Though it would quickly become obvious if Eddy were freed, for example, the women could easily conceal their freed hands amidst their dresses, and without close scrutiny, no one just happening into the room on a check would notice. This left only a single difficulty now.

After some brief and uncomfortable discussion between the two, Miss Penn thrust her chest forward like the most wanton of women seeking attention, and Miss Coltrane, with much polite and ladylike cursing, shifted herself about in her bonds as much as she could and attempted to fish the knife out with her teeth. While I should very much like to say that I looked away, or at least that Eddy did, I am afraid that the truth is that it was quite impossible not to watch this unusual feat in the doing. Eventually, she succeeded somehow or other in producing the knife. She managed to drop it onto the bed and turn herself back about.

AuthorjeffcookAbout the author, Jeffrey Cook…

Jeffrey Cook lives in Maple Valley, Washington, with his wife and three large dogs. He was born in Boulder, Colorado, but has lived all over the United States. He’s the author of steampunk epistolary novels Dawn of Steam: First Light and Dawn of Steam: Gods of the Sun and has contributed to a number of role-playing game books for Deep7 Press out of Seattle. When not reading, researching, or writing, Jeffrey enjoys role-playing games and watching football.

Co-contributor Sarah Symonds also lives in Washington. Born and raised in Seattle, she left for college and promptly came back. Sarah has been writing for fun since high school and tends towards short-shorts or novels. When not working on her own novels, Sarah enjoys costuming, fiber arts, and making Jeff explain football.


Links to Jeffrey’s website, blog, books, etc.


Thanks for stopping by to share your newest release, Jeffrey!


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One Response to Karen’s Killer Book Bench: Dawn of Steam: Gods of the Sun by Jeffrey Cook with Sarah Symonds

  1. Karen Docter says:

    Good morning, Jeffrey, and welcome back to Karen’s Killer Book Bench. I really enjoyed your excerpt today. I love the idea of using a journal approach to describing what’s happening to the characters.

    Have a great day!

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