A glorious planetary romance from critically acclaimed SF author Felix Gilman
Following his spectacularly reviewed The Half-Made World duology, Felix Gilman pens a sweeping stand-alone tale of Victorian science fiction, space exploration, and planetary romance.
In 1893, as young journalist Asa Shaw is at work in British Museum Reading Room, a storm hits London and wreaks unprecedented damage. In its aftermath, Asa’s newspaper closes, owing him money, and all his debts come due at once. His fiance Jo takes a job as a stenographer for some of the fashionable spiritualist and occult societies of fin de siècle London society. Asa accompanies her to one of these meetings and is given a job lead. It seems to be accounting work, but at a salary many times what any clerk could expect. The work is long and peculiar, and the men spend all day performing unnerving calculations that make them hallucinate or even go mad... but the money is compelling.
Things are beginning to look up when the wages of dabbling in the esoteric suddenly come due: A war breaks out between competing magical societies, and Asa interrupts Jo in the middle of an elaborate occult exploration. This rash move turns out to be dire, as Jo's consciousness is stranded at the outer limits of a psychic day trip. Which, Asa is chagrined to find, was somewhere in the vicinity of Mars.
Asa won't give up the love of his life so easily and vows to do anything it takes to reunite her mind and body... even if he must follow her to Mars.