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Book Review

Book Cover

Kat on a Hot Tin Airship


Author: Sam Stone
Publisher: Telos Publishing
RRP: £12.99, US $19.95
ISBN: 978 1 84583 086 1
Publication Date: 31 August 2013

Kat Lightfoot has survived zombies and the denizens of the netherworld with her partners Pepper and Martin, growing into an efficient demon hunter. But that seems far behind her as she travels into the fading grace of the south, after the American Civil War. A family gathering has been called to celebrate her brother Henry’s marriage to the southern belle, Maggie...

Kat on a Hit Tin Airship is the new novella by Sam Stone. Following the success of Zombies at Tiffany’s, it was only a matter of time before Stone's heroine would make another foray to the funky side of the spirit world.

Anyone familiar with Tennessee Williams’ play will instantly recognise the setup. Kat arrives at a southern plantation. The family is headed by Big Daddy Pollitt and Big Momma, the part of Brick is played by Kat’s brother Henry, right down to the crutch and the possibility that he might have a drink problem, both gentlemen are married to Maggie.

Stone has taken just the bare bones of Williams’ world to create her own story, there is little in the way of mendacity, but sexuality rears its head.

When Kat arrives for the celebrations she quickly decides that something is very wrong in the house. She had already met Maggie’s brother, Orlando, on the train down and realised that he was a Nephilim. The greater secret waits for her at the house where a dark form seems overly interested in the woman folk.

The story zips along at a cracking pace as Kat uncovers the secret of the plantation. One of the nice things about the story is that I was unable to work out the reveal until Stone was ready to tell me. I went through several subjects being the dark form and was grateful that I was wrong; it’s not often that an author can surprise me.

Stone kicks the book off with a frantic race against time to save a child. It has nothing to do with the main story, but works as a good introduction to Kat's character and abilities making for an exciting read.

The title is a bit of a misnomer and I’m sure she will come in for a lot of stick from readers expecting the airship to play a greater role, but why use up all your best ideas in one story when you can introduce them and use them to a greater extent in a later tale. If the airship didn’t get much time, the same cannot be said of the cast of characters, all of which are given time to develop, no mean feat in a story of this length.

It is another fun outing for Kat and well worth your time.


Charles Packer

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