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The Resurrectionist of Caligo

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With a murderer on the loose, it's up to an enlightened bodysnatcher and a rebellious princess to save the city, in this wonderfully inventive Victorian-tinged fantasy noir. "Man of Science" Roger Weathersby scrapes out a risky living digging up corpses for medical schools. When he's framed for the murder of one of his cadavers, he's forced to trust in the superstitions With a murderer on the loose, it's up to an enlightened bodysnatcher and a rebellious princess to save the city, in this wonderfully inventive Victorian-tinged fantasy noir. "Man of Science" Roger Weathersby scrapes out a risky living digging up corpses for medical schools. When he's framed for the murder of one of his cadavers, he's forced to trust in the superstitions he's always rejected: his former friend, princess Sibylla, offers to commute Roger's execution in a blood magic ritual which will bind him to her forever. With little choice, he finds himself indentured to Sibylla and propelled into an investigation. There's a murderer loose in the city of Caligo, and the duo must navigate science and sorcery, palace intrigue and dank boneyards to catch the butcher before the killings tear their whole country apart. File Under: Fantasy [ Straybound - Royal Magic - A Good Hanging - Secret Sister ]


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With a murderer on the loose, it's up to an enlightened bodysnatcher and a rebellious princess to save the city, in this wonderfully inventive Victorian-tinged fantasy noir. "Man of Science" Roger Weathersby scrapes out a risky living digging up corpses for medical schools. When he's framed for the murder of one of his cadavers, he's forced to trust in the superstitions With a murderer on the loose, it's up to an enlightened bodysnatcher and a rebellious princess to save the city, in this wonderfully inventive Victorian-tinged fantasy noir. "Man of Science" Roger Weathersby scrapes out a risky living digging up corpses for medical schools. When he's framed for the murder of one of his cadavers, he's forced to trust in the superstitions he's always rejected: his former friend, princess Sibylla, offers to commute Roger's execution in a blood magic ritual which will bind him to her forever. With little choice, he finds himself indentured to Sibylla and propelled into an investigation. There's a murderer loose in the city of Caligo, and the duo must navigate science and sorcery, palace intrigue and dank boneyards to catch the butcher before the killings tear their whole country apart. File Under: Fantasy [ Straybound - Royal Magic - A Good Hanging - Secret Sister ]

30 review for The Resurrectionist of Caligo

  1. 4 out of 5

    Umairah | Sereadipity

    Plot: 3/5 Characters: 3/5 Writing: 4/5 The Resurrectionist of Caligo was a Victorian fantasy and murder mystery with strong themes of medicine, grief and illness. It had a promising premise and although I liked the ideas in it, I felt slightly let down by it at the same time. Roger Weathersby was a resurrectionist- a person who unlawfully unearthed corpses to sell on to medical schools. However, when he one day discovered a strange and horrifying corpse he began to follow the clues surrounding a Plot: 3/5 Characters: 3/5 Writing: 4/5 The Resurrectionist of Caligo was a Victorian fantasy and murder mystery with strong themes of medicine, grief and illness. It had a promising premise and although I liked the ideas in it, I felt slightly let down by it at the same time. Roger Weathersby was a resurrectionist- a person who unlawfully unearthed corpses to sell on to medical schools. However, when he one day discovered a strange and horrifying corpse he began to follow the clues surrounding a string of terrible yet similar murders along with the help of his former friend, princess Sibylla, and together they went down a dark and dangerous path from which there was no return. I liked the way Roger's character was developed because although at first glance he seemed like a careless rogue he was actually a really kind person who just wasn't very good at dealing with authority and had a knack for getting himself into messy situations. I liked the way he looked out for Ada and her mother. Sibylla was interesting because she could seem petty at times but she did care deeply for her people. My only problem with her was that she wasn't particularly memorable in any way. Now, when I think about the book I can't think of one thing she did that really stood out to me or was very admirable. The dynamic between Roger and Sibylla was... weird. They did like (maybe love?) each other and though their relationship did grow stronger once more I felt like it didn't really go anywhere. Also, this novel had major pacing issues. I'm pretty sure around 68% of the way through it I found myself wondering whether the main story was going to get started yet, then realising to my horror that I'd already surpassed over half the book. It was extremely slow at the start and then at the end there was a few plot twists and reveals and that was it. The ending was ambiguous and while I sometimes appreciate books that are open-ended I didn't like this one because it didn't give me any sense of conclusion or leave me with any implications or thoughts to ponder over. The Resurrectionist of Caligo is a creative yet flawed read. I think it's worthwhile giving it a go- just don't go in with very high expectations. Thank you to Angry Robot for providing me with a review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own .

  2. 5 out of 5

    wanderer (Para)

    ARC received from the publisher (Angry Robot) in exchange for an honest review I had fairly high expectations going in. Dark Victorian fantasy with a murder mystery plot and at least of a bit of a focus on medicine? Plus that gorgeous cover? Unfortunately, The Resurrectionist of Caligo was a letdown. Initially, I was hopeful it would be one of those books that manage to pull it off despite its many flaws, but the nearer to the end I was, the more clear it became that this is sadly not the case. ARC received from the publisher (Angry Robot) in exchange for an honest review I had fairly high expectations going in. Dark Victorian fantasy with a murder mystery plot and at least of a bit of a focus on medicine? Plus that gorgeous cover? Unfortunately, The Resurrectionist of Caligo was a letdown. Initially, I was hopeful it would be one of those books that manage to pull it off despite its many flaws, but the nearer to the end I was, the more clear it became that this is sadly not the case. The characters were either bland or assholes and what's worse, the worldbuilding and plot had more holes than swiss cheese and the ending...did not do it any favours. Note: the word "resurrectionist" is simply an euphemism for a person who digs up corpses and sells them to doctors to learn from, it's not related to necromancy (alas). The story is split between two perspectives. Roger Weathersby is a corpse thief who steals fresh cadavers from the graveyard and sells them to medical schools. While on one of his expeditions, he ends up being framed for murders he definitely did not commit. There is a serial killer targeting women, as well as a mysterious disease, and now Roger has to race against time to clear his name and find who really did it. He finds himself tangled with princess Sibylla, his ex-lover, whose half of the book is...basically some fairly standard court intrigue. The main problem is, it all relies on massive amounts of idiot ball and increasingly contrived twists. If you thought Robin Hobb's The Farseer Trilogy relied too much on people acting like idiots to advance the plot, boy you're in for a surprise. And the closer to the end it is, the worse and more ridiculous it gets. That might not have been too bad if the characters and worldbuilding were up to scratch. Which...they weren't. Sibylla and Roger felt very bland and most everyone else was an asshole. The only character I liked was Ada aka Ghostofmary, the little girl Roger takes under his wing. The worldbuilding isn't much better. It's Victorian-flavoured, which is what initially drew me to the book, but...sloppy. Surface-level. There's a lot of concepts that would make it a hellish dystopia (genetic magic, for one), but they are mostly sidestepped or not engaged with as much as I felt they should have been. It doesn't commit. It has a slow start, so I wasn't enjoying myself until about 50% when my curiosity about mystery plots took over. Only for my enjoyment to tank completely at the end. I love mystery-type plots and I love fantasy books involving medicine, so this should have been more or less my thing. But even the best concept doesn't help when the execution isn't up to scratch. Enjoyment: 2.5/5 Execution: 2/5 Recommended to: people desperate for Victorian-inspired fantasy Not recommended to: people who hate idiot ball and contrived plot twists More reviews on my blog, To Other Worlds.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Alex

    First of all a resurrectionist is not Dr. Frankenstein, he’s a guy who sneaks into graveyards at night and digs corpses up to sell to sleazy Victorian doctors for dissection practice. I figure that information will make you either more or less excited about this book. For me it’s more exciting, I love this shit, Victorian doctors are such nightmares, always bloody to their elbows with plague pus and leeching widows to death and whatever. It’s all very gothic. The Resurrectionist of Caligo marries First of all a resurrectionist is not Dr. Frankenstein, he’s a guy who sneaks into graveyards at night and digs corpses up to sell to sleazy Victorian doctors for dissection practice. I figure that information will make you either more or less excited about this book. For me it’s more exciting, I love this shit, Victorian doctors are such nightmares, always bloody to their elbows with plague pus and leeching widows to death and whatever. It’s all very gothic. The Resurrectionist of Caligo marries this mucky corpse-grubbing to a parallel plot featuring a magical princess, and it’s that clash of settings that makes it so much fun. Every other chapter, you ricochet from locked in a tomb with some creepy nightgowned kid to the sinister intrigue of a palace ball. The princess’s magic could only be invented by a writer (lol) - she can conjure ink. As a nervous tic, she spins off little ink bees that amble off into the air before dissolving. You wonder what she could make if she were really stressed. Maybe you'll find out! There’s some wonderful imagery there, and believe it or not both of these storylines are exciting - it’s not like those Wheel of Time books where there were long sections featuring whats-his-name, the boring one, and you wanted to kill yourself. The two storylines are connected, of course - in ways both immediately and less obvious. Someone spent a lot of time sketching out the intricate details of this plot, and by someone I mean my friend Wendy, so yes I am reviewing my friend’s book, full disclosure or whatever. Look, it was cowritten by someone named Alicia and I don’t know her at all, so...see? Objective af. Listen, I liked this book. We’re clearly being set up for a sequel here, and I’m here for it.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Tana △⃒⃘ ⚯͛ Cozyreadings

    28/06/2019 i recieved a copy through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review 3.75 Meet Roger, a resurrectionist, and Sybilla, a princess with magical powers that has been stowed away because she is refusing to marry her cousin. Meanwhile, a strangler is killing a certain type of women. Roger is at the wrong place at the wrong time, and gets blamed for these killings. In the synopsis of the book, it said that Roger and Sybilla tagged up to find this mysterious killer in Caligo. This is not 28/06/2019 i recieved a copy through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review 3.75 Meet Roger, a resurrectionist, and Sybilla, a princess with magical powers that has been stowed away because she is refusing to marry her cousin. Meanwhile, a strangler is killing a certain type of women. Roger is at the wrong place at the wrong time, and gets blamed for these killings. In the synopsis of the book, it said that Roger and Sybilla tagged up to find this mysterious killer in Caligo. This is not really true. She knows there's a killer on the loose, but Roger finds the whole ordeal out on his own. Maybe I understood it wrong, but that was the main reason I wanted to read this. You can imagine my disappointment when they were not becoming a detective duo at all. The fact that they only meet at around 75% of the book, made me annoyed. But hey, that might just be my own fault. Otherwise this book was very enjoyable! The characters weren't flat, the plot in itself was really good, and the twists at the end were well done. The magic aspect was fun, and I liked that it was important to the plot of the book. Recommend this for sure! 17/06/2019 I GOT APPROVED FOR AN ARC AND I'M HYPED 15/06/2019 This sounds so fun???

  5. 5 out of 5

    keikii Eats Books

    To read more reviews from this author and others, check out my blog at keikii Eats Books! 40 points, 2 stars Quote: She was dead now, at any rate. Accidental premature burial was not unknown. It was not his fault. Though a resurrectionist in name, he could not actually bring the dead back. Review: Unfortunately, I had a lot of problems with the Resurrectionist of Caligo. It started off poorly with me. Then, it did get a bit better before there was a steep nosedive at the end. I just feel a bit To read more reviews from this author and others, check out my blog at keikii Eats Books! 40 points, 2 ¼ stars Quote: She was dead now, at any rate. Accidental premature burial was not unknown. It was not his fault. Though a resurrectionist in name, he could not actually bring the dead back. Review: Unfortunately, I had a lot of problems with the Resurrectionist of Caligo. It started off poorly with me. Then, it did get a bit better before there was a steep nosedive at the end. I just feel a bit out of sorts about this book. I am confused a lot by why this book is the way it is. I had the same problem in the beginning with Caligo as I did with some other Angry Robot books: I felt like I was thrown in and told to swim. This isn't a bad technique, if it is being used on purpose, but I don't think that was the case with this book. I felt comfortable enough in the story and the setting by about 20%, though. So it did sort itself out quickly enough. Though part of the reason I felt like I was swimming in the setting is because it was so full of holes. If you ignored a whole lot of things, it mostly worked. But if you looked at it even a little bit you could see it was a fishnet instead of a fine mesh foundation. So many things didn't seem to work. So many things were just completely ignored that could have made the setting work a lot better. A lot of other things were so unnecessary they were distracting. I just had problems with it. Then there were the characters. I only liked one character in the entire book, and that was the kid sidekick. Every single other character was either an asshole, an idiotball, or both. Every side character except the kid was an asshole, without fail. There weren't even anything even remotely redeeming about most of them. They just were there to make life more painful for the main characters. Then there were the two main characters who shared the narration. They were giant, giant idiotballs. Especially at the end. I'm supposed to believe that these two characters knew and liked each other when they were younger, but life led them towards different paths and that they're going to like each other again in the end? No. It would have been a better story had they never known each other until events pushed them together. And that isn't when they're sniping at each other constantly, or when they aren't making some of the dumbest decisions I've seen in a very, very long time. The story itself is very slow. It takes forever to start and forever to do anything. When things do happen, it ends up covering the same ground a lot. Sometimes multiple times from both of the narration characters. It just doesn't even do anything for vast portions of the book except exist. It is constantly sidetracked to the point where I almost hoped that Roger would end up dead at the end of the book. His life is on the line to the point where if he gets sidetracked, he could die...and he gets sidetracked. Sigh. Then there is that ending which honestly just goes from bad to worse. You would think the characters couldn't get worse, but then they do. And all those holes in the setting and plot end up just becoming wider to make that ending the authors had in mind fit. I had a few theories about how the ending would play out, and instead of the authors choosing they decided to just throw all of them at me. Thanks. I received this book from Angry Robot in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for providing the opportunity to review this copy.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Christine Sandquist (eriophora)

    Thank you to Angry Robot for this ARC in exchange for an honest review! “She’s the ninth to die, they say. Just like the ones before her.” Her voice was almost too soft for Roger to catch. “The daily papers don’t report it for fear of scandalizing visitors, what with that Cabbage King of Khalishka on his way. Can’t say I blame them.” Nine women? Roger stretched his neck upward to hear the rest of it. “One expects such ends for women of the slums, but not actresses and respectable shopkeepers. I Thank you to Angry Robot for this ARC in exchange for an honest review! “She’s the ninth to die, they say. Just like the ones before her.” Her voice was almost too soft for Roger to catch. “The daily papers don’t report it for fear of scandalizing visitors, what with that Cabbage King of Khalishka on his way. Can’t say I blame them.” Nine women? Roger stretched his neck upward to hear the rest of it. “One expects such ends for women of the slums, but not actresses and respectable shopkeepers. I admit, reading gruesome broadsheet headlines is a diversion of mine – don’t tell my dear Tobias…” The speaker moved away from the window, and Roger cursed his luck.” Although there are many elements which should have worked well for me, this novel didn’t quite pull together the way I might have hoped. At only about 10% in to the Kindle edition, I could already tell that Caligo was not Caligoing well for me. Although I wouldn’t necessarily recommend The Resurrectionist of Caligo, I will say that I would happily give this author duo another shot in the future. Wendy Trimboli and Alicia Zaloga show promise in this debut even if it could have used a bit more polishing and editing. The writing style itself is somewhat reminiscent of Brandon Sanderson’s – it’s functional and straight to the point. It’s not particularly flowery, but it keeps the story moving along at a reasonable clip. I did not enjoy the inclusion of vernacular, but that’s a personal preference on my part rather than a criticism of the way it was written. If vernacular isn’t something that bothers you, I don’t believe this would be an issue at all. Unfortunately, the first place this book falls apart is in the character development. The story is told across two points of view: Sibylla, a princess of the realm, and her childhood friend, Roger Weathersby, raised as a footman in the castle. Sibylla isn’t a terrible character, but her actions often come across as feeling out of place. In one scene, she becomes so angry she smashes her teacup (was the cup empty? What happened to the tea? Did it splash everywhere? We just don’t know). However, this is the only time she ever shows any sort of violent tendencies… and it was due to the smallest of provocations. There are many other odd instances of this, as well. She’s 18, of age to marry, but has been living in a small keep in the countryside due to her refusal to marry her cousin. Royal intermarriage is very common, as the royal family has secured their lineage as a form of divine mandate: all the royals have some form of magic, which is passed down genetically. “Lady Brigitte smoothed Sibylla’s hair. “You’ve read enough books to know not all marriages are about love.” “The happy ones are.” “That’s simply what impoverished authors would have you believe.” “And are you happy with Father?” “No amount of hysteria will change the next few days, [Sibylla].” . . . “Despite being told whom she should love, she’d only fallen once. Roger had taken her heart and run off with it. And soon she might wed a man just to lower the market price of cheese abroad. Tears prickled behind her eyelids.” Sibylla has three inherited gifts. Unfortunately, not a single one of the three ever becomes plot relevant. She is able to conjure bioluminescence within her blood, allowing her to glow like a jellyfish. She can create ink from beneath her fingernails and has a limited control of it in the air, allowing her to create little bees that fly around or write/draw without a pen. Finally, she has a “whistle-click” – essentially, a non-deadly method of weaponizing sound. None of these are ever used in a way that couldn’t be easily replicated using mundane tools in the same situation. Quite frankly, it could just as easily be red hair as it is magic. The magic literally adds nothing that a normal physical feature would not. Royals are also treated as a saints, with their own chapels where the masses can go to pray to them. They write their prayers on the backs of plaques and hope for intervention via divine mandate. Now, I’m not entirely clear on how the purview of specific royals are assigned… but somehow, apparently Sibylla ended up the patron saint of – I shit you not – erectile dysfunction. I think this is supposed to serve as comic relief, but unfortunately it simply falls flaccid at every attempt. The men pray to her when their dicks don’t work. This is not a drill. She. Is. The. Patron. Saint. Of. Erectile. Dysfunction. And it’s not even funny in context! “They arrived in Caligo’s medical district where tincture vendors, barbers, surgeons, and well-to-do purveyors of medicine occupied every shop front along Mouthstreet. Royal public service warnings against dishonest quacks and poisonous “health potions” were pasted over advertisements for Dr Groady’s Droop Serum – for “when even the princess can’t help your performance.” Though the emperor chuckled, Sibylla didn’t find the slogans amusing.” And then… there’s Roger. Roger, Roger, Roger. Where to begin. First of all, I have no idea why he speaks in heavy vernacular as though he were a street urchin. Roger was raised as a footman in the palace, great friends with the princess, and has always been a regular reader of academic texts on medicine and surgery. It literally makes no sense at all that he’s unable to speak or write with proper English grammar and syntax. “Sibet, her highness Princess Sibylla, had been his childhood partner in crime. Or rather, he’d been hers. Sidekick, stuntsman, scapegoat, whipping boy, and eventually the eager object of her affections. But the folktales had lied. A servant couldn’t love a princess. Not if he wanted to keep his head. After his banishment he’d scaled the palace walls intending to explain to her why he’d taken the queen’s money – his mother’s illness, physician bills – and earned a prison stint for his pains, along with a broken nose. Maybe one day he’d meet her again at some banquet held by the Royal College of Surgeons, as a self-employed medical man with his name painted above the door of his own practice. What was he doing, dredging up Sibet after all this time? He’d drive himself mad. He had dismissed that pie-in-the-sky long ago.” Second of all, god he’s an idiot. And not only an idiot, but a bit of an asshole too. Roger is meant to be a sympathetic character from the reader’s perspective, or so it seemed, yet it was awfully hard to sympathize with him at all. He’s been accused of murder, which throws his small life digging up corpses to sell in exchange for cash and university classes on medicine into utter disarray. He frequently gets in fights with his brother over class differences, despite his brother having supported Sibylla hanging out with the lowly soldiers back in the countryside keep. He argues with Sibylla about their childhood relationship and its falling out. The whole thing is just… ridiculous. If he ever took a moment to simply talk to others honestly and openly, nearly all of his biggest issues would have dissolved in a heartbeat. Actually, that’s true of basically all the characters in this book. “You speak of her highness as if you considered yourself her peer.” Harrod expelled this last word like a bit of gristle. “A pity, that. I’d hoped to find you… contrite. I thought her letter might make you reconsider your future. It wasn’t easy, but I’ve arranged a footman’s position for you in a respectable household. You’ll have room, board, and work better suited to your–” “These class differences you harp upon ain’t real!” Roger shouted. “No human is better than another. I’ve cut up enough of ’em, and we all look more or less the same on the inside. We all rot when we’re dead. A smart man may have a small brain, or the other way ’round. Royals claim their faerie magic, but it’s all smoke and mirrors. I grovel only so I don’t hang. Enjoy your golden chains and your charmed life, and leave me alone.” The entire plot is essentially predicated on every single character acting in the stupidest way possible and utterly failing to communicate with one another. It’s like Who Framed Roger Rabbit but shitty. The storyline has more holes than Swiss cheese. I typically don’t attempt to figure out mysteries ahead of time, as I enjoy being taken along for the ride. I’d rather uncover things as the characters do – I just don’t really enjoy speculating in that sense. However, despite this, I called the ending of Caligo less than halfway through. I was torn between hoping I was wrong, since that would be too predictable even for me, and praying that I was right given that if there was a twist it was bound to be trite, dumb, and, again, predicated on characters playing idiotball with one another. That all said, I actually quite liked two of the main side characters – namely, Ada (AKA Ghostofmary) and Emperor Timur. Ada is a young girl who manages to befriend Roger as he goes about in his grave robbing ways, and Timur is the emperor of Kalishkan, an Arabic-inspired country. Ada is interesting and a proper ball of mischief. She takes shit from no one, but has a real weakness for hot cross buns… and as a fellow carbivore, I fully relate. She enjoys hanging out at the graveyard and terrifying would-be body-snatchers. “With a shaking hand, Roger raised the candle toward the shadows. He nearly fainted at the sight. A child swayed in the far corner, a pale girl-like thing in a puff of white nightdress. Her hands clasped a bouquet of glowing mushrooms – the hovering light. Her white sliver of neck ended in a blob of darkness. No head, no face. The candle rolled from Roger’s fingers. “By the Lady’s nethers!” He couldn’t rise from his knees, nor unclasp his hands. Whaaaaaatddddiiiiidyouuuuuubringmeeeeeeee??? . . . “See?” she said. “I washed off the flour an’ the coal. You ain’t being hauled off to hell just yet.” “That were… you?” “I like scaring scoundrels, not killing ’em. But breaking locks, grave robbing and such, you near deserve it. Besides, I saw the prison brand on your neck. Get nabbed again, and you’ll hang.” Timur, on the other hand, is game for just about anything. When Sibylla is tasked with wooing him by her grandmother the queen, she takes a decidedly nontraditional path by, y’know, taking him around the slums of Caligo in search of her childhood friend, Roger. I have to give the man credit: when Sibylla takes him to a morgue, his response is essentially, “Sure, why the fuck not. Let’s see what happens here.” I appreciate that in a love interest, personally. I also appreciated that the Kalishkans didn’t fall into the “woman-oppressing evil Arabs” stereotype we so often see. In fact, it was heavily implied that Kalishkan has a much more equitable and progressive society, allowing women to train as doctors or in other professional careers. “Sibylla laughed. She had never been told she thought less of herself than she should. “And you have an understanding of what I could be?” Tentatively, the emperor tucked a strand of loose hair behind her ear. “An equal. For example, if you tell me you are already engaged this evening, I would believe you are engaged. And if you say you are not, then you are not.” Sibylla studied the emperor, certain he spoke of more than evening entertainments. “And if I needed this afternoon to pursue another matter?” The emperor stared into the Mudtyne’s murky waters. “Then I would consider that a small price for a private dinner. The time it takes to weigh one’s fortune against those of others.” Unfortunately, outside of these two characters, the rest of the cast was largely forgettable and often confusing. Many characters had similar names, similar ranks, and generally similar personalities. This made it quite a challenge to keep track of them all, especially since they were only rarely plot relevant. Several had “surprise” twists at the end of the book… which unfortunately made very little sense in the grand scheme of things, eliciting not gasps of surprise and realization, but rolling eyes and deep sighs of irritation. The ending was easily the worst part of this book. All in all, I have to say…. if you were coming in to this book hoping for a fun mystery revolving around necromancers, of which there are none, you may have come to the wrong place. There are many much better Victorian-era fantasies out there to scratch your itch for intrigue. This review and others can be read on my blog, Black Forest Basilisks.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Hélène Louise

    I was absolutely delighted by this book, since the very beginning until the last page, and have already pre ordered the paper book. I'll be very happy to read the sequel, and will certainly re read this one first. Curiously it's often easier to explain why some read didn't agree with me than explain about my enthusiasm. I will thus start with a possible trigger for a random reader: corpses. If the story is settled is a fantasy world, with magic, and not an uchronic one, the atmosphere holds a I was absolutely delighted by this book, since the very beginning until the last page, and have already pre ordered the paper book. I'll be very happy to read the sequel, and will certainly re read this one first. Curiously it's often easier to explain why some read didn't agree with me than explain about my enthusiasm. I will thus start with a possible trigger for a random reader: corpses. If the story is settled is a fantasy world, with magic, and not an uchronic one, the atmosphere holds a certain historical tonality, as the theme of Resurrectionists is based on a reality of the beginning of the 19° century in many European countries. The idea is to exhume illegally some corps to sell them to medical institutes, to allow dissections and learning. The character whose activity is to be a Resurrectionist isn't indifferent to people, quite the contrary. His dream is to be a real doctor someday and he tries to survive and to train himself. His philosophy is that learning to protect and to treat the living is more important than respecting the dead - even if he's never disrespectful or indifferent toward the corpses he used that way. So if you believe in medecine and for caring for the living above all, and don't mind (or even crave) frequent allusions to graveyards, corpses and death (nothing really gore, mind you) and if you're not shocked because of some ethical convictions of yours, you'll have all the chances to love this book as much as I did.  The story is very entertaining, a mix between social comedy, mysteries, criminal investigation and old grievances. The atmosphere isn't dark, even if the themes are, but rather positive and heart-warming. The characters are great, with colourful interactions, strong personalities but never stereotyped thanks to some clever nuances: the young princess, quite rebellious, is just dragging out things, she knows that she'll have to marry the right person someday and not the one she'd have chosen. The young hero, intense and caring, is also impetuous and prone to premature judgement, and the perfect young man has quite a funny part. The relation between the main character and the little girl is wonderful, subtle, touching (but never mushy), bittersweet and credible.  I also loved how the magic (rare and only reserved to the royal family, with assassination of all illegitimate children to guarantee the purity of the line) was treated: some rather weird and even a priori useless magic, but which have been very useful in specific circonstances. This point has driven the population to worship their royalties, alive and dead alike, in a colourful way. Speaking of the past, the manner used to draw the background is faultless: if you're an intolerant info-dump reader you'll be delighted! Many hints and very short stories are told during the book, quite naturally,  bringing all the required informations while painting a vivid and substantial background. Really outstanding writing. One of my best read of the year, I'm looking forward reading more of the authors! (I thank Netgalley and Angry Robot for sending me the ARC in exchange for my honest review)

  8. 4 out of 5

    Reese Hogan

    This book was so much fun! It was unlike anything I’ve read before, in either setting or plot. I think what I loved the most was the way science and magic were addressed. In books about magic, you don’t often see people of science trying to figure out how these tricks are performed every step of the way. It brought to mind (as it was meant to) the way marvelous new inventions like lighting and medical marvels would have felt to the people of Victorian England. I found Roger’s character so This book was so much fun! It was unlike anything I’ve read before, in either setting or plot. I think what I loved the most was the way science and magic were addressed. In books about magic, you don’t often see people of science trying to figure out how these tricks are performed every step of the way. It brought to mind (as it was meant to) the way marvelous new inventions like lighting and medical marvels would have felt to the people of Victorian England. I found Roger’s character so endearing—kinda bumbling, but full of heart and righteous indignation, and absolutely determined to figure out the science behind everything. And Sibet, his childhood friend and now princess, was fascinating with her drive and a very unique magic system, involving both ink and blood. Also, there are dead bodies, coffins, betrayal and intrigue, vocabulary that was a blast to read, and a foreign emperor I just fell in love with. And did I mention the science? Well worth checking out! *I was given an Advance Readers Copy in exchange for an honest review.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Tucker

    This book is being published by an angry robot

  10. 5 out of 5

    Tyler Hayes

    I got the chance to read an ARC of this, and I'm thrilled to say I loved it! Trimboli and Zaloga have penned an emotional story of high Gothic fantastical weirdness; it reads like Edgar Allan Poe, Jane Austen, and Gail Carriger got buried alive together and managed to mingle the best parts of each other into a single novel. Our protagonists are Roger, graverobber, man of science, and trashfire cinnamon bun; and Sibylla, headstrong princess and wielder of semi-divine magic. The story starts with I got the chance to read an ARC of this, and I'm thrilled to say I loved it! Trimboli and Zaloga have penned an emotional story of high Gothic fantastical weirdness; it reads like Edgar Allan Poe, Jane Austen, and Gail Carriger got buried alive together and managed to mingle the best parts of each other into a single novel. Our protagonists are Roger, graverobber, man of science, and trashfire cinnamon bun; and Sibylla, headstrong princess and wielder of semi-divine magic. The story starts with a mysterious murder spree, a promise of courtly intrigue, and a childhood dalliance come back to haunt both our heroes, and launches from there into a captivating narrative that pays off everything it promises at the start and earns every one of its weird twists and turns. The world of Resurrectionist is tantalizingly real, the prose is breathlessly witty, and the characters are impossible to avoid loving (or loathing, in a few noteworthy cases). If you've ever called yourself a goth, played 7th Sea, or wished that Pride & Prejudice had magical ink-bees in it, you need this book.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

    Full review is here, on my blog!~ This is the story of Roger Weathersby, a surgeon, or at least, a medical student of sorts, in the city of Caligo, which is very like Victorian London, but with a little more magic. Roger is also a resurrectionist, which more or less means he steals corpses and sells them to medical schools around the city. That’s how he funds his medical education. It is also the story of Princess Sibylla, who is the granddaughter of the queen. In this world, the royal line have Full review is here, on my blog!~ This is the story of Roger Weathersby, a surgeon, or at least, a medical student of sorts, in the city of Caligo, which is very like Victorian London, but with a little more magic. Roger is also a resurrectionist, which more or less means he steals corpses and sells them to medical schools around the city. That’s how he funds his medical education. It is also the story of Princess Sibylla, who is the granddaughter of the queen. In this world, the royal line have certain magical powers, which gives them the divine right to rule. And so Sibylla is expected to marry her first cousin to keep those magical traits within the bloodline. When she refuses, the queen exiles her to a distant holding to live more or less alone for two years, prior to the events of this book. Now she is back in Caligo, and trying to protect the identity of a half-brother, who the queen would likely kill to prevent magic from spreading to the commoners. Roger and Sibylla have a past, wherein he was a scullion and footman in the palace and she tutored him, until it became more than that. They’ve gone their separate ways, but are still linked by Sibylla’s bodyguard and friend Harrod, who is Roger’s half-brother. When women keep showing up murdered, and Roger is blamed for it, Harrod concocts a plan to save his life, by binding him to Sibylla for life by blood magic. Roger has five days to prove his innocence before the ritual will begin. This was certainly an interesting read, and very unique. The magical bloodlines aspect of the book was well fleshed out and easy for me to imagine. Sibylla, for example, has the power to leak ink from under her fingernails, which she uses not only to write, but also to make elaborate pictures in the air. She can also turn her skin translucent and glow, which is how she is expected to prove her ‘divinity’ more or less. It was an interesting idea. There were a couple of reasons that this one just didn’t click with me as much as I had hoped. I did like Roger as a character, for the most part, and Sibylla to a much lesser extent. Roger makes some awful decisions, and is often oblivious to things that I would consider obvious, but I still found myself cheering for him. He’s got just enough snark that I couldn’t help it. But, that said, actually latching onto a character is probably one of the major reasons that the ending of this book soured a lot of the whole thing for me. I won’t spoil it, but suffice to say that I did not at all like the way that this book ended, in terms of the state of the protagonists. One of them got the shortest possible end to the stick, and after an entire book of more or less cheering for them, it was very disappointing, to be honest. Parts of the mystery, or things that were likely meant to be bigger ‘twists’ to the plot seemed pretty obvious to me as well. I will say that the whodunnit and why was elusive enough throughout the book, so that was a welcome surprise at the reveal, but a lot of the finer details of the mystery I had guessed with some accuracy. Overall though, as a mystery, it did alright at keeping things under wraps. So, all told, I went into this one hoping for a fun Victorian-Urban-Fantasy-Murder-Mystery, and while it is those things, it just wasn’t 100% my cup of tea. I found it really difficult to latch on to these characters, and then when I finally did latch on, the ending completely ruined any hopes I had for them. C’est la vie, I suppose. You can’t win them all. It’s entirely possible that this book will be oodles better in audio. It has a lot of promise as a good story to hear, if the narrators are good. Thanks to the authors as well as Angry Robot for the review copy!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Lynn Williams

    3.5/4 of 5 stars https://lynns-books.com/2019/09/23/th... I have to say straight up that I had a good time with The Resurrectionist of Caligo. I had a few little issues but they were only minor and didn’t spoil the read at all for me. The Resurrectionist is set in a pseudo Victorian time and place and really plays into that setting. As the story begins we make the introduction of Roger Weathersby, a body snatcher or grave robber – or ‘man of science’ as he prefers to be called. Body snatching was, 3.5/4 of 5 stars https://lynns-books.com/2019/09/23/th... I have to say straight up that I had a good time with The Resurrectionist of Caligo. I had a few little issues but they were only minor and didn’t spoil the read at all for me. The Resurrectionist is set in a pseudo Victorian time and place and really plays into that setting. As the story begins we make the introduction of Roger Weathersby, a body snatcher or grave robber – or ‘man of science’ as he prefers to be called. Body snatching was, lets just say prevalent, during a certain period in history. People had no knowledge of anatomy or the inner workings of the body and cadavers were in short supply. Stealing the dead was actually a legal ‘grey’ area even though resurrectionists were generally frowned upon. For Roger, employed by an anatomy school and keen to learn more himself, the ends justify the means. So, spade and lockpicks in hand he starts the story in a graveyard which is where he receives not only a ghostly apparition (to be known affectionately henceforth as ‘ghostofmary’) but also uncovers a body that seems to have been buried whilst still alive! And this is where the mystery element begins. At the same time we make the acquaintance of Princess Sibylla or Sibet to her friends. The Royal Family line are all bestowed with magic abilities although in recent years these are becoming somewhat diluted. It’s therefore become popular between royalty and nobles to marry within families to keep the bloodline strong. As such Sibylla was expected to marry her cousin – a fate which she had no stomach for – and has spent a good while in isolation for her dissent. This is a period of great change. A time when questions were being asked and superstitions beginning to be set aside. The divine rights of the monarch are falling under the spotlight and the last thing they need is to lose the support of the people through failing magic. Sibylla still longs for her first love, a young man who in spite of being far beneath her in station won her heart before disappearing from her life. Roger is that young man and both he and Sibylla have a difference in opinion about what actually happened to split them apart. Let me be clear right now – this is not a romance novel at all (at the moment). Yes, there is an underlying tension between Sibylla and Roger when their paths eventually cross but this has more in common with Holmes and Watson than Lady Chatterleys Lover. Just saying. There is plenty of intrigue going on here. A murderer seems to be at large nicknamed the Greyanchor Strangler who seems to predominantly focus on young ladies of the night! This is a part of the story that vividly calls to mind all the different theories around the Whitechapel Murderer – old Jack the Ripper himself. Was it a member of royalty, was it a doctor or surgeon, etc, and these theories and suspicions all play really well into the story. Along with this there is some royal posturing taking place that also serves to cast suspicions and red herrings around the place. What I really liked about this were all the little ways that this plays delves into the Victorian era and takes a spotlight to the sort of things that were intensely popular at the time – such as over the top ostentation and elaborate funerals. There is the intense disparity between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’. The Queen here seems to rule with an iron rod and certainly doesn’t seem to find much to amuse her. Some members of the royal family seem to take their responsibilities very lightly indeed. There’s the murders and the red herrings and it’s all wrapped up with a sort of light and sometimes almost absurd comedy of manners style that gives it a lovely feel – it seriously could become quite dark and gothic with all the focus on cadavers, murders, ghostly apparitions, graveyards and grave robbings, poverty and fog bound streets and so I have to say that I appreciated the injection of gallows type humour. In terms of criticisms – very little really. I don’t think I’ve totally got on board with Sibylla yet – which isn’t to say I disliked her but I’m just not quite on side with her yet – although I really did appreciate that she grudgingly took on the pampered princess role. As it was I much preferred Roger’s chapters so that did sometimes make me race to get to those parts in particular. That being said, it was the Princess’s chapters that brought the delightful comedy of manners side to the read. Overall though, I really enjoyed this gaslamp fantasy and I’m keen to read whatever comes next and learn more about the magic and the strange rituals such as binding criminals to members of Royalty, Given the ending here I suspect the next book will give much more opportunity to travel further afield with both Roger and Sibylla.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Devann

    I received an ARC copy of this book from NetGalley actual rating: 2.5 I'm sure this could be a very enjoyable read for the right person, but I was just bored out of my mind. I think I could have given it 3 stars if it was maybe ...2/3rds to half length it is now, but it just felt like it dragged on and on. The setting is decent enough - a Victorian inspired semi-steampunk world with magic - but none of the aspects are really explored in-depth [shocking considering the overall length but I digress] I received an ARC copy of this book from NetGalley actual rating: 2.5 I'm sure this could be a very enjoyable read for the right person, but I was just bored out of my mind. I think I could have given it 3 stars if it was maybe ...2/3rds to half length it is now, but it just felt like it dragged on and on. The setting is decent enough - a Victorian inspired semi-steampunk world with magic - but none of the aspects are really explored in-depth [shocking considering the overall length but I digress] and it seems like the entire point of most of it is 'for the aesthetic' [which I get but ...come on, commit to something]. Most of the characters are either incredibly boring [Sybilla] or downright unlikable [Harrod]. Roger is okay some of the time but I feel like overall he was entirely too whiny for me to really be rooting for him and Mary was fun but wasn't around enough to really make any sort of impact. I think if it had stuck more closely to the resurrectionist plotline and less to all the royal intrigue and marriage drama then it would have been much more enjoyable and probably also closer to what people were expecting based on the cover and summary. There's some cool stuff if you read between the lines but I think it could use more editing overall.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Timy

    When I saw the cover for The Resurrectionist of Caligo, it instantly picked my interest, along with the blurb. It definitely sounded like something up my alley, a gothic-noir tale I could lose myself in. And so, I had really high expectations. Maybe too high, because The Resurrectionist of Caligo sadly did not deliver what it promised to me. I tried, I really tried to love it, but 19% in I just had to give up. As I didn't read it fully, I will only leave a mini review here, summing up my When I saw the cover for The Resurrectionist of Caligo, it instantly picked my interest, along with the blurb. It definitely sounded like something up my alley, a gothic-noir tale I could lose myself in. And so, I had really high expectations. Maybe too high, because The Resurrectionist of Caligo sadly did not deliver what it promised to me. I tried, I really tried to love it, but 19% in I just had to give up. As I didn't read it fully, I will only leave a mini review here, summing up my thoughts and trying to give an idea why it didn't work for me. The thing is, this book failed to draw me in right at the beginning. Which is not necessarily a problem, if I can ease into the story as we go, but that didn't happen. I was waiting for something to awe me, to make me feel like I wanted to know what is going on. I felt like it lacked world building, and had more telling than showing. I didn't feel like wanting to walk along one of our main characters, Roger as he invaded the graveyard, or strolled in the city. I got the vague sense of Victorian-like setting, but didn't really saw the city before my eyes. I'm also not sure where the story was going, but as I bounced back really early on, this might have been established. There was just too many plot holes and things unexplained for me to continue. As I said, I wasn't drawn in, and couldn't make sense of things. Like why Roger starts an investigation when its clearly not his business, what is up with that pin and generally why are those murders have any insignificance. I still could get over my issues regarding the plot and lack of world building, if I could connect with any of the characters. I just couldn't stand any of them, and that was the main reason that made me stop reading. I couldn't make myself feel any sympathy towards them or root for them. Sybilla is an entitled, selfish, bored princess acting like a brat, Roger is just plain weird with his fascination for the dead and though I think he might have the best interest at heart, he just comes across creepy, and Harrod is just plain annoying with his rules and stuck-up-ness, He tries to control everyone and everything, starting with Roger. Why did he decide to play postman between Sybilla and Roger is beyond me because he clearly not really fond of his brother. Again, this might have been resolved later in the book, but at the point where I was, just didn't make sense at all. All things said, I'm really sorry that The Resurrectionist of Caligo didn't work for me at all. I hope others will like it, but maybe because of the timing, or because I just didn't connect with anything I had to make the decision to walk away. When the only thing I like about a book is a little girl - Ada - then that's a sign that I might not be the right audience after all.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Dan

    THE RESURRECTIONIST OF CALIGO is gothic fantasy in the extreme. Its pages are packed with fog shrouded streets, eerie blood magic, grave-robbing, court intrigue, bitter rivalries, shattered hearts, faded dreams, elegant clothing, and perhaps the strangest literary mushrooms since ALICE IN WONDERLAND. The debut novel from Wendy Trimboli and Alicia Zaloga is a delight, filled with impeccable worldbuilding and compelling characterizations. I’m happy to say that every time I felt like I knew where THE RESURRECTIONIST OF CALIGO is gothic fantasy in the extreme. Its pages are packed with fog shrouded streets, eerie blood magic, grave-robbing, court intrigue, bitter rivalries, shattered hearts, faded dreams, elegant clothing, and perhaps the strangest literary mushrooms since ALICE IN WONDERLAND. The debut novel from Wendy Trimboli and Alicia Zaloga is a delight, filled with impeccable worldbuilding and compelling characterizations. I’m happy to say that every time I felt like I knew where things were headed, a new revelation came along that turned my understanding upside down. The prose is sharp and clever and kept me turning pages, while the characters -- both those I loved and those I despised! – made me care about the resolution. I’m hopeful for a sequel, though in the meantime I’ll simply have to while away my days sipping gin in the dark and brooding… and also by working on a fan-build tallycracker set.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Connie

    Roger Weathersby is a man of science who makes a poor living by robbing the graves of the newly deceased and selling the fresh corpses to the medical schools. He dreams of becoming a Doctor but the dream is shattered when Roger is framed for a string of murders that he didn't commit. The only one who can save him is his old friend Princess Sibylla and her blood magic ritual. I loved this, my heart was in my mouth on more than one occasion. I hope there will be more to come.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Empress Reece (Hooked on Books)

    I thoroughly enjoyed the world building and the characters, especially Roger, Ada and Princess Sibet. It was so good I read it in one sitting. If you like Victorian gothic mysteries you'll enjoy this one. I hope that this becomes a series because I would love to revisit this world again. *I received this ARC from NetGalley and Angry Robot in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Preslaysa Williams

    This is a well-told Gothic Story with magic and mystery, and I loved it. Reminded me of one of my favorite writers, Edgar Allen Poe. I especially enjoyed the Roger and Sybilla. I am looking forward to more stories from the authors, Tromboli and Zaloga. I received an ARC of this novel and I’m voluntarily leaving a review.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Online Eccentric Librarian

    More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog http://surrealtalvi.wordpress.com/ I greatly enjoyed this book - another wonderful read full of pathos and humor that publisher Angry Robot always delivers. Set in a less grim Dickensian London full of magical realism, the author successfully treads the line between unremitting hopelessness and dark humor. These are characters we want to follow even with their foibles and susceptibility to fate. The writing is quick, descriptive, and moves the plot well. More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog http://surrealtalvi.wordpress.com/ I greatly enjoyed this book - another wonderful read full of pathos and humor that publisher Angry Robot always delivers. Set in a less grim Dickensian London full of magical realism, the author successfully treads the line between unremitting hopelessness and dark humor. These are characters we want to follow even with their foibles and susceptibility to fate. The writing is quick, descriptive, and moves the plot well. Story: Roger was once the childhood friend of a princess, though he was only the son of a servant. But as he grew up, the two were separated and now Roger desperately tries to learn to become a physician through the only means possible to a poor man - exhuming cadavers for study and to sell to a college to earn money for books/tools. It's dangerous, slightly illegal, and distasteful - but he has few options. Princess Sibylla, meanwhile, was glad to see Roger go when they were younger - she caught him kissing the help and wasn't pleased to learn he accepted a bribe payment to leave the palace. But now, as an adult, she is faced with having to keep her magical bloodline continued by finding a suitable partner, all the while surviving the machinations of her royal family. The two are about to stumble into the path of a serial killer. First, readers will have to adjust expectations after reading the description of the book - the couple do not immediately get bound together and don't even meet until nearly 70% of the book is done. The story is mostly told from their alternating points of view as we learn of their situations. Also, there isn't any romance here, though there is a previous attraction. So those thinking this is a romantic fantasy will be disappointed. What we have here is a murder mystery, with fantasy elements, and some very well drawn characters/characterizations. And while this ends on a clear arc, there is a lot left open (including their relationship) to be developed in further novels. So I greatly hope the author continues the story. Finally, those worried this will be too grim or gory can relax - the author brought so much heart to the flawed characters and more than enough humor to keep the read from plodding or becoming unbearably dark. Both main characters are people that are fleshed out enough to make you want to root for them to succeed as they address the big mystery while also solving/facing the issues in their person lives. In all, recommended. I greatly hope to see more from this author. Reviewed from an advance reader copy provided by the publisher.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Alyson Kent

    3.75 stars rounded up. Thank you Edelweiss and Angry Robot for the eARC I really wanted to give this book five stars, because I did enjoy it book and I’m curious to see what happens with them next considering what Roger is up to at the end and what’s going on with Sibylla, but I was annoyed that the storyline didn’t really follow the synopsis until the last 30% of the book (I was reading an eARC). I was expecting Roger’s framing to happen earlier than it did, and for him and Sibylla to have met 3.75 stars rounded up. Thank you Edelweiss and Angry Robot for the eARC I really wanted to give this book five stars, because I did enjoy it book and I’m curious to see what happens with them next considering what Roger is up to at the end and what’s going on with Sibylla, but I was annoyed that the storyline didn’t really follow the synopsis until the last 30% of the book (I was reading an eARC). I was expecting Roger’s framing to happen earlier than it did, and for him and Sibylla to have met back up at least 20% in the book to begin investigating the real “whodunit”. But the first 70% of the book is spent world building Caligo, touching on the political scene, and flipping between Roger and Sibylla’s third person POV (which I liked) and building up the background story between them and the setting the stage for events to come. Which wasn’t a bad thing because I really did enjoy exploring the city of Caligo and their lives, but that wasn’t what I was expecting based on the synopsis, which was a fast paced murder mystery and not a slow accounting of the character’s lives up until this point. So I spent a lot of the book going “ok, when are they meeting up again? When is this ritual supposed to take place? When are they going to look for the real murderer?” As an aside; Ada is by far my favorite character and I can’t wait to see more of her. I thought her relationship with Roger was one of the best aspects of this book, and she’s only around maybe 10% of the time.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Michelle Hauck

    Before steampunk there is gaslamp fantasy--a Dickensian type world of Victorian standards and morals where the poor stand out in sharp contrast to the wealthy and medicine has yet to evolve. Where civilization is just starting to break out of the dark ages into modern thinking and science. The Ressurrectionist of Caligo is a unique type of fantasy. I don't think you'll find a first chapter quite like this one anyplace else or with more vivid characters. It's not often you open a book to grave Before steampunk there is gaslamp fantasy--a Dickensian type world of Victorian standards and morals where the poor stand out in sharp contrast to the wealthy and medicine has yet to evolve. Where civilization is just starting to break out of the dark ages into modern thinking and science. The Ressurrectionist of Caligo is a unique type of fantasy. I don't think you'll find a first chapter quite like this one anyplace else or with more vivid characters. It's not often you open a book to grave robbing, or are delighted with a spunky girl with extremely bad grammar. Roger Weathersby calls himself a Man of Science, but how can he refuse to believe in magic when he grew up in a palace full of royals--including a certain kissable princess--with magic in their blood? There are two of the running themes of this Victorian-style story--magic versus science and blood. From the first chapter Roger's life takes a turn for the macabre when the corpse he "frees" shows signs of unnatural death. With a strangler on the loose and blamed for those crimes, Roger has to turn to the family he turned his back on--his half brother and the princess, Sibet, he left to pursue a life of science. Only with help from Sibet can the murderer be revealed--only the purpose behind these murders reaches right at the heart of the royal magic.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Lucy Gardiner (luc_lostinbooks)

    The resurrectionist of caligo is a murder mystery with fantasy elements combining magic & science. Roger Weathersby a body snatcher who is a man of science and refuses to believe in magic or magic beings at the start but seems awfully superstitious anyway carrying garlic and other charms to ward the creatures off. I loved him as a character he was hilarious “That belongs to my stiff, you imp.” Saying to a young girl who tried to steal something whilst in the process of robbing a dead body The resurrectionist of caligo is a murder mystery with fantasy elements combining magic & science. Roger Weathersby a body snatcher who is a man of science and refuses to believe in magic or magic beings at the start but seems awfully superstitious anyway carrying garlic and other charms to ward the creatures off. I loved him as a character he was hilarious “That belongs to my stiff, you imp.” Saying to a young girl who tried to steal something whilst in the process of robbing a dead body 😂😂 Princess Sibylla has magical powers she’s inherited through her bloodline and has had dealings with roger in the past (they don’t get along). Sibylla was a brilliant character rebellious, sharp witted and clever. The magic system using the ink was fascinating. We see from both POVs life for Roger on the streets and Sibylla in the palace, there’s also a gruesome series of murders that have taken place. The writing is sharp, quick and full of suspense that keeps you engaged. Dark humour I’m not sure if I was supposed to be laughing but I did. Out loud on more than one occasion. Mystery, magic, murder, romance, betrayal, humour, science, action and some politics thrown in for good measure - everything and more I look for in a story, I highly recommend this book. Thank you to angry robot publishing and netgalley for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review. .

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Van

    What a delicious Gothic mix of magic and science. Love the fully realized characters, particularly Roger, 'the sac-em-up man', and Ada, otherwise known as 'Ghost'. The story pulls you in from the first grave-robbing scene with those two, weaves in spirited, magical, Princess Sibet, and spits you at the other end, wanting to test your own blood, just in case you have 'magic.' If you like gaslamps, darkness, humor (yes humor, wait till you read the letters between Roger and Sibet) and blood magic, What a delicious Gothic mix of magic and science. Love the fully realized characters, particularly Roger, 'the sac-em-up man', and Ada, otherwise known as 'Ghost'. The story pulls you in from the first grave-robbing scene with those two, weaves in spirited, magical, Princess Sibet, and spits you at the other end, wanting to test your own blood, just in case you have 'magic.' If you like gaslamps, darkness, humor (yes humor, wait till you read the letters between Roger and Sibet) and blood magic, this book is for you. Thanks to the authors for the ARC!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Patrice Sarath

    Oh, I loved this book. Great world-building, a snarky princess, wonderful letters, magic, a plucky street urchin -- all this plus grave-robbing for a cause. I'm looking forward to more stories in the city of Caligo.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Anna Tan

    Roger Weathersby is a Man of Science in a land ruled by magic--it's magic that lends legitimacy to the throne, passed down through the royal blood. He's skeptical about it, the way the royals are worshipped and deified, but when Roger is framed for murder, magic might be the only thing that can save him. The Resurrectionist of Caligo delves into the slightly macabre, with Roger digging up dead bodies for a living, throwing us back into that bygone era were doctors were still learning about the Roger Weathersby is a Man of Science in a land ruled by magic--it's magic that lends legitimacy to the throne, passed down through the royal blood. He's skeptical about it, the way the royals are worshipped and deified, but when Roger is framed for murder, magic might be the only thing that can save him. The Resurrectionist of Caligo delves into the slightly macabre, with Roger digging up dead bodies for a living, throwing us back into that bygone era were doctors were still learning about the human body. And of course, there's the murders--not just one, but the serial murders that Roger is framed for. I picked up an advanced proof copy of this from the Angry Robot Books booth during Worldcon, so had no clue what I was getting into. This book surprised me from the very start! The story is straight forward, barring a few surprising twists, and told in the third person from Roger and Sibylla's POVs. I appreciated this very much because Roger comes very close to being Too Stupid To Live at times. The distance afforded by the third person POV, less angst and more humour, plus the (mostly) altruistic motives, saved me from getting too annoyed. (I did think will you just shut up now, you're being an idiot a few times.) But as I mentioned, the humour! This is the type of writing that I enjoy: snark and dry wit. I found myself laughing to myself quite a lot. I also do like the star-crossed lover scenario, made even better by the fact that it's not a new love, but a failed entanglement that is still getting in the way of them moving on. There are some niggling "but why..." questions, but nothing that really detracts from the enjoyment of the story. Overall, a fun read!

  26. 5 out of 5

    Annarella

    I find hard to describe this book because it somehow reminded me of Gail Carriger, I think the simil Victorian setting, the witty dialogues and how Sybil is written reminded me of the Parasol Protectorate (I adore it). At the same time there're some gothic part and I also love them. It was like eating a big cake, one of those case full of colourful decorations and with the right taste. A cake you cannot stop eating and enjoying. This book is excellent, entertaining, enjoyable and wasn't able to put I find hard to describe this book because it somehow reminded me of Gail Carriger, I think the simil Victorian setting, the witty dialogues and how Sybil is written reminded me of the Parasol Protectorate (I adore it). At the same time there're some gothic part and I also love them. It was like eating a big cake, one of those case full of colourful decorations and with the right taste. A cake you cannot stop eating and enjoying. This book is excellent, entertaining, enjoyable and wasn't able to put it down. It was not love at first page but the kind of love you develop reading and that will last. The world buidling is incredible, the humour, the well written cast of characters. I can say I loved it all and I hope this is the first in a series because I want more cakes like this. Highly recommended! Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Nathan Makaryk

    I was fortunate to read an advance copy of RESURRECTIONIST, and thoroughly enjoyed it! I loved the gentlemanly-Victorian fantasy world and the macabre Jack-the-Ripper style murder investigation, but even moreso I loved the conflict between science and magic in this world, and that both are still barely understood and considered to be nothing but parlor tricks by the other side. Very much in line for anyone who enjoyed books like Schwab's A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC, and the theme and types of magic I was fortunate to read an advance copy of RESURRECTIONIST, and thoroughly enjoyed it! I loved the gentlemanly-Victorian fantasy world and the macabre Jack-the-Ripper style murder investigation, but even moreso I loved the conflict between science and magic in this world, and that both are still barely understood and considered to be nothing but parlor tricks by the other side. Very much in line for anyone who enjoyed books like Schwab's A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC, and the theme and types of magic also felt a lot like getting to explore the world of the DISHONORED video game series. I'm very particular with the use of magic in fantasy worlds, so a story like this where science is used to try to understand how magic works just makes me happy. And the novel does a great job of grounding all of this into relatable characters that you honestly root for.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Elesha

    This was a fun story filled with mystery and magic. I enjoyed the characters and the world building, though sometimes I had trouble keeping names straight. I like the time period it was set in, the time where science/medicine was moving forward. If you're looking for a fantasy with a good mystery and fun characters, this one is for you.

  29. 4 out of 5

    zaheerah

    *I received a copy via the publisher and NetGalley in return for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book.* Roger Weathersby barely scrapes by making a living out of stealing corpses for medical schools, dreaming that one day, he’ll be a reputable doctor that saves lives. But when he’s framed for a murder of one of his steals, he is forced to reunite with an old friend to save the city and, hopefully, clear his name. The old friend in question is none of than Princess *I received a copy via the publisher and NetGalley in return for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book.* Roger Weathersby barely scrapes by making a living out of stealing corpses for medical schools, dreaming that one day, he’ll be a reputable doctor that saves lives. But when he’s framed for a murder of one of his steals, he is forced to reunite with an old friend to save the city and, hopefully, clear his name. The old friend in question is none of than Princess Sibylla, who returns to her childhood city on request of her Queen grandmother, who is keen to see she is married off to her cousin to further their magical bloodline. But when her own suspicions tie in with Roger’s situation, it’s up to them to save the country before it’s torn apart. I’m not going to lie, this was quite a surprising read. The Resurrectionist of Caligo is quite intriguing. The royal family of Myrcnia rule by divine right due to their magical skills that comes from their bloodline. Everyone has a different ability, and due to it only being manifested in a person’s biology, the reigning Queen is quite hellbent on making sure it stays in the family. And that means killing off any illegitimate children and only allowing marriages within the family. And this has Sibylla on edge because her half-brother is hidden within the city and she is sure Queen is close to discovering his identity. Roger is in a strange position where in the town, the people are restless, and science is growing and questioning the supremacy of the magical users. A Resurrectionist is simply a cooler term for grave snatcher in the name of science. And Roger begins to notice a pattern in the corpses he has been collecting and the victims of a well-known strangler who has been terrorising the women of Caligo. I loved the magical features and the development of the political intrigue of this universe. But, the world-building is a hit or miss situations where within Myrcnia, and its capital Caligo, it is quite packed with a lot of detail. I was quite impressed with the quasi-Victorian design that is set up. Trimboli and Zaloga draw on the challenges of the Victorian-era lifestyle, echoing a steampunk design, which creates the Myrcnia’s landscape. A pivot part of Sibylla’s arc is her interaction with the neighbouring country, but I was disappointed how bland they were in comparison. You get a lot of rich detail within the city, but they’ve resorted to merely being the outsiders, and it just didn’t sit well with me. I personally loved Sibylla and Roger as characters in their own right, but the story really hinges on their childhood connection and, personally, I never really caught on to what drew them together. And a lot of their communication is passed between Roger’s half-brother, who is also Sibylla’s warden. They appear to despise each other, and there’s little given to understand their connection, aside from their forced situation. Overall, I found The Resurrectionist of Caligo quite entertaining. It was quick, easy to read. The characters are great, I enjoyed the mix of comedy and mystery, and it was quite heart-warming in most scenes. The magic system is by far the most exciting aspect of this novel, but not as utilised as you would expect. But I would definitely be interested in checking out in any future sequels.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Natalie

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Why didn't this work for me? It has literally everything I like in a book: - Victorian-esque setting - murder mystery - exes forced to work together - fantasy world with interesting magic system. Unfortunately, it also has: - one dimensional, somewhat dimwitted characters - glacially slow plot This is probably one of my biggest disappointments of 2019. I was REALLY looking forward to it, but it fell SO FLAT that I had to force myself to keep reading. Sibylla - no character development to her at Why didn't this work for me? It has literally everything I like in a book: - Victorian-esque setting - murder mystery - exes forced to work together - fantasy world with interesting magic system. Unfortunately, it also has: - one dimensional, somewhat dimwitted characters - glacially slow plot This is probably one of my biggest disappointments of 2019. I was REALLY looking forward to it, but it fell SO FLAT that I had to force myself to keep reading. Sibylla - no character development to her at all, and her chapters were dull. She was also really immature (name calling, really?) and bratty for a character in an adult fantasy (I think it's adult??? It never mentioned how old the characters were). Also, she was clueless and her magical power, while cool, was basically useless. Roger - I liked him more than Sibylla, but not by much. He just seemed to exist to move the plot forward. Also, pretty much every bad thing imaginable happened to Roger. Harrod (Roger's brother) - I hated him the most of all the characters in the book. I actually liked the serial killer more than Harrod. I thought when Roger was accused of murder, Harrod would be there to help him figure out who the real murderer was, but no. Instead, he got Roger out of jail and had him do chores around his house while constantly belittling him. I just could not get behind his motivation at all. Basically I was expecting some kind of great brotherly crime-solving team-up, but the Drake brothers, they were not. Anyway... The plot? Where was it??? For a story centered around a serial killer, it moved SO SLOWLY. The first half of the book at least has alternating chapters telling about the day to day lives of Sibylla and Roger. When Roger was accused of the murder it got a little better, but still had some major pacing issues and that really detracted for me. Also (I think maybe because of the cover?) I was expecting this to have more romance in it. I was actually really looking forward to the romance (ex to more is one of my favorite tropes), but there is no romance at all, really. What I did like: - ooh, Dorinda! I wished the whole book was about Dorinda. She had sass and spunk and wayyy more life than Sibylla, Roger and Harrod combined. And she was barely in the book. - the whole "bind a criminal to a magical royal so the criminal becomes a servant" justice system was really interesting Sadly, I did not enjoy this anywhere near as much as I was expecting to.

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