Science Fiction and Fantasy Association of New Zealand

The Janus Affair The Janus Affair
by Pip Ballantine And Tee Morris
Harper Voyager

Supplied for review by Harper Collins New Zealand

Reviewed By: Simon Litten

The Janus Affair is the second book co-authored by husband and wife team Tee Morris and Pip Ballantine, continuing the adventures of Wellington Books and Eliza Braun and the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences.

For those unfamiliar with the series the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences stories are set in a steampunk milieu where the anachronistic is commonplace. Where steam velocipedes, ornithopters and airships are not out of place; and a dashed good cup of tea is de rigeur (make mine orange pekoe, the Assam please).

Books and Braun have been partnered and sequestered to the archives, to the chagrin of both and the frustration of at least one of them. However, as the archives are where the unsolved cases are filed, opportunities for unsanctioned fieldwork abound. And those opportunities are grasped with alacrity.

In The Janus Affair suffragists are going missing in public and that just won’t do; not for Eliza Braun, who has a personal interest, nor Wellington Books, who is dragged willingly along. Airships, villainy, misdirection, and steaming technology ensue. Guns blaze, romance is kindled, hearts are won and lost, and paradoxes resolved. And where’s that dratted cup of char I ordered, confound you! (I hate to voice the thought, but the staff might not be up to it.)

Ballantine and Morris have hit their straps as a writing team, with this book being more of a whole than their first outing, Phoenix Rising. I found it a fun filled novel, with characters that rang true. Trot along and buy it now; there’s a good fellow.

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