Pennymaker kicks off her steampunk mystery series with this clever, wickedly fun entry. After losing everything in a fire, Brenorra Warring’s father decides his only option is to take a job in the uncivilized Coalition Colonial Region on the other side of the ocean, and thus he boards a ship along with Brenorra. But when a calamity strikes the ship, Brenorra finds herself left with nothing but the clothes on her back, some documents in her father’s satchel, and discovery that he has been lying about their reasons for leaving. As deadly secrets begin to surface, Brenorra realizes she must decode the messages her father left for her and to do that she must put her faith in two complete strangers. Pennymaker draws readers in with the unexpected detours of her fast-moving plot, rich narrative, and fully realized, deeply intriguing setting. The story is gripping from the start, and the tension and suspense in the narrative stays ripe even as surprisingly delicious romance blooms between the protagonists. The steampunk world that Pennymaker creates is both imaginative and well-defined, and the suspenseful ending promising the trio’s further adventure will ignite readers’ fervor for the next installment. This deeply engrossing tale, which dips a tad into Victorian-influenced thrillers, will please readers looking for finely crafted, page-turning steampunk mystery. A stunning tale of secrets and intrigue, this is sure to wow.