Marty Chan’s fascinating Metamorphosis takes place in a steampunk, alternate reality version of early twentieth-century New York City, wherein interdimensional travelers and Earth’s natives clash.
Ehrich Weisz, a former demon hunter, is a dimensional who understands that a truce between the differing beings is unlikely. Earth’s residents never quite warmed to their visitors from other worlds, even before a planet-razing dimensional tried to stage an invasion. Now, signs in shop windows warn dimensionals away, and a building project that was many dimensionals’ primary source of income has been shut down. This uneasy situation fills Ehrich with anger and despair:
He loathed the racist sentiments the frightened and paranoid citizens hollered on the streets. Fear had loosened their tongues and imprisoned their empathy.
Ehrich and his allies know that, in order to keep all dimensionals safe, they have to find a way to nullify the threat of another invasion. But first, they need to smoke out their enemies.
Nikola Tesla is with the dimensionals as an ally. He’s represented as a gentle, moral man whose genius may be the means of understanding and utilizing the soul-imprisoning Infinity Coil, a relic from another realm. Against them all is Thomas Edison, who wields power and electricity over the dimensionals and plots public executions on Coney Island.
Sizzling tension arises as Ehrich and his allies fight for safety on multiple fronts. Riveting details capture fascinating technologies, oyster-hocking food vendors, dimensionals and their variety of gifts, and the bustle of New York’s city streets. The story’s references to previous events are both pronounced and necessary as Ehrich and the rest press on toward the end, with the fates of many worlds hanging in the balance.
Metamorphosis is an exciting steampunk adventure whose scientific and ethical lessons arise in ethereal bursts.
Michelle Anne Schingler
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