A CURSE OF ASH & IRON BY @cnorrisauthor @CuriosityQuills #BookReview #Steampunk #wwwblogs

A Curse of Ash and IronA Curse of Ash and Iron by Christine Norris
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A Curse Of Ash and Iron is a steampunk tale set in the late 1800’s Philadelphia in an era of mass industrial revolution. The book evolves around the Eleanor Banneker and Benjamin Grimm. Childhood friends pulled apart by dramatic family events and then reunited by chance seven years later.

Aged 17 Ben now works as stage crew in a theatre, Ellie has become the victim of her wicked stepmother in a Cinderella style life. However there is a sinister twist as Ellie believes she and her father are under a curse. Desperate for help Ellie turns to Ben.

At the Centennial Exposition the pair are mesmerised by mechanical inventions, but they also meet a fortune-teller who knows more about Ellie than is possible without the sight. She gives Ellie clues about breaking the curse and then vanishes. Ellie and Ben set out to gather items needed, even having a wild adventure in a steam powered “motorcar”, but the curse must be broken before midnight on New Year’s Eve.

A mystery person arranges for Ellie to go to the New Year’s Assembly Ball in true Fairy-Godmother style, with a race against time to break the curse.

This is my first Steampunk read, so I’ve nothing to compare it with, certainly there were mechanical attractions, magic and mystery, did the Cinderella tale add or detract from the genre? I’m not yet sure.

This review is based on a free copy of the book given to me by the author via Curiosity Quills.

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

View all my reviews on Goodreads

Cinderella Twist? #FridayFiveChallenge #Steampunk would you BUY or PASS?

This fun feature is a mini workshop. We look at book covers just from their thumbnail pictures at online selling book sites and make quick fire buying decisions. We look from a READER’S Point of View and this exercise is very EYE OPENING.

From the book cover we will browse the book description, price and some of the reviews BUT we only have 5 MINUTES.


Join in and see where it leads.

Grab a coffee and spend 5 Minutes on this exercise.

This week I’ve been looking at STEAMPUNK a genre I’ve not read, but one I want to stretch my reading with.

The Curse Of Ash & Iron by Christine Norris

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Book rescription

Benjamin Grimm knows the theater is much like real life. In 1876 Philadelphia, people play their parts, hiding behind the illusion of their lives, and never revealing their secrets.

When he reunites with his childhood friend Eleanor Banneker, he is delighted. His delight turns to dismay when he discovers she has been under a spell for the past 7 years, being forced to live as a servant in her own home, and he realizes how sinister some secrets can be.

She asks for his help, and he can’t refuse. Even if he doesn’t believe in ‘real’ magic, he can’t abandon her.

Ellie has spent the long years since her mother’s death under the watchful and unforgiving eye of her stepmother. Bewitched and hidden in plain sight, it seems no one can help Ellie escape. Not even her own father, who is under a spell of his own. When she sees Ben one evening, it seems he is immune to the magic that binds her, and her hope is rekindled along with her friendship.

But time is running short. If they do not find a way to break the spell before midnight on New Year’s Eve, then both Ellie and her father will be bound forever.

Price; £3.99 kindle UK or $4.99 Kindle US

Number of reviews; 2 Amazon UK and 24 Amazon US

Published May 2015

Would I BUY or PASS?…….BUY


This genre is completely new to me so I have little to compare it will, I like the book cover, cogs and the era of yesteryear are part and parcel of this genre. One reviewer mentioned a Cinderella link and I spy the familiar surname of Grimm, which is linked to books, so I’m hopeful that this will be a good place to start on this genre.

My Friday Five Challenge is this….. IN ONLY FIVE MINUTES….

1) Go to any online book supplier,

2) Randomly choose a category,

3) Speed through the book covers, choose one which has instantly appealed to your eye,

4) Read the book Bio/ Description for this book,

5) If there are reviews, check out a couple,

6) Make an instant decision, would you BUY or PASS?

(then write a little analysis about your decision)

Share your post, use #FridayFiveChallenge @rosieamber1 and I’ll help share all relevant posts.

Here are links to others taking part in today’s challenge

Shelley searched for Good Friday and found GoodFriday:Dreams & Nightmares by JR Wirth

Cathy searched for Druids and found Time’s Legacy by Barbara Erskine

Liz has been searching for Poison and found The Colour of Poison by Toni Mount