Blue Caldera

The Steampunk Detective Stories of V.S. Velde


Blue Caldera

Blue Caldera will be released as an e-book in October of 2014. It combines elements of steampunk, gothic mystery, and hard-boiled detective stories. It can be preordered from Amazon:

The Hudson Colony and Moromoto Prefecture face each other across a harbour, 6000 miles of open sea separating them from their respective empires; the archipelago is known as a den of vice as much as an important commercial port. In the recesses of the Colony Complex, Ettie Thompson works the dull job of a codebreaker, envying the exciting work of her bureau's detectives. An intercepted note seems like an intriguing distraction when it leads her to a society of voyeurists. But when a controversial alchemist is murdered, Ettie is drawn into the investigation from two sides: her bureau asks her to decipher the dead man’s notebook, and the society asks her to exonerate one of its own members of the crime. Finding the truth means exploring the darkest corners of the archipelago; finding justice means exploring her own dark past. 



A circular current keeps the flotsam of the Eastern Harbour circling for weeks at a time. Every now and then the current changes, usually on an early-morning high tide, and brings that whole flotsam into the piers, where it collects amongst the ships: scant driftwood and cast-off timber; some glass bottles that have picked up enough sea-water to turn them neck-up and bobbing like marching soldiers; some fishing net and blood red seaweed that knits it all together. And, on one particular morning, the body of a Japanese man. He had not been in the water long. A man can drift for years through life in the colonies, unnoticed and little-changed. But drifting in the water is a short-lived venture before the dogfish sharks will change you beyond all recognition.
— Blue Caldera, first lines

V.S. Velde    ©      2014