The Jackal’s House

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Something is stalking the Aegyptian night and endangering the archaeologists excavating the mysterious temple ruins in Abydos. But is it a vengeful ancient spirit or a very modern conspiracy…

Rafe Lancaster’s relationship with Gallowglass First Heir, Ned Winter, flourishes over the summer of 1900, and when Rafe’s House encourages him to join Ned’s next archaeological expedition, he sees a chance for it to deepen further. Since all the Houses of the Britannic Imperium, Rafe’s included, view assassination as a convenient solution to most problems, he packs his aether pistol—just in case.

Trouble finds them in Abydos. Rafe and Ned begin to wonder if they’re facing opposition to the Temple of Seti being disturbed. What begins as tricks and pranks escalates to attacks and death, while the figure of the Dog—the jackal-headed god Anubis, ruler of death—casts a long shadow over the desert sands. Destruction follows in his wake as he returns to reclaim his place in Abydos. Can Rafe and Ned stand against both the god and House plots when the life of Ned’s son is on the line?

FINAL

 

 

 

PAPERBACK

You can buy the paperback from Dreamspinner or Amazon, or contact me for a signed copy

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Jackal's House cover image

Publication Dates :
First Edition: 30 October 2017

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Cover Artist: Reese Dante

Map Illustrator: Margaret Warner

Wordcount: c 113,450 including steampunk glossary.

Category: Steampunk, Gay mainstream.

 

 

 

Butler complicates and expands the steampunk world of her wildly inventive Lancaster’s Luck series … a complex and swift-moving adventure with plenty of arch humor, and a charming romance with two sharp-witted and intrepid gentlemen explorers.  Romantic Times

… a beautifully written love story that is bursting with style and talent. This story is so good, so well done that adequate words are hard to find.  Chez Shay Online Reviews

 

… just outstanding entertainment and a grand read! If you love suspense, mystery, romance, and a story full of intrigue and great world building, well, this is the one for you… the characterization is superb, the plots tight and deeply layered and the suspense off the charts. And the love and romance matches it all.  Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Reviews

…totally a 5 star read…only because they tell me that’s all the stars I can give it, otherwise there’d be a hella’ lot more of them up there at the top of this review.  My Fiction Nook Reviews

… so interesting and engaging and I just couldn’t turn the pages fast enough to find out what was going to happen next. And while I guessed some of it, the rest was mindblowing! Anna Butler’s writing is stellar, the imagery is very vivid and the characters are fantastic. Even if you don’t like historical books or steampunk, this is a series that you shouldn’t miss! Bayou Book Junkie reviews

The world building in this series is fabulous… The action scenes are well written, and had me on the edge of my seat. .. I’d highly recommend The Jackal’s House to readers who enjoy steampunk with a good dollop of mystery and adventure, and interesting, likeable characters. More please. Drops Of Ink

I was bowled over by the story…  I am fascinated in the idea of historical science fiction settings and Anna Butler has created an amazing AU with her Lancaster Luck series… There is just so much packed into this story that I don’t even really know where to begin without doing spoilers so I’ll just say this: I loved it, there is just no more simpler way to express it. Padme’s Library

 

 

 

Also nominated by Dreamspinner Press for the 2017 INDIES Book of the Year Awards

 

 

 

 

“We have a thirty-minute window before there’s a commercial flight.” Haines gestured with his remaining hand toward the front window and the view of the aerodrome. “Shall we?”

My mouth was dry. All the moisture in me was in my hands. I had to take my hand away from the control yoke—the joystick—to wipe sweaty palms against my trouser leg.

She moved slowly under her own power down the access road to the aerostrip itself. Once at the end of the strip, I halted her, keeping the engine revs high. Haines tapped the gauge showing engine power. “She’s much heavier and bigger than your old aerofighter. You’ll need to be heavier on the throttle, push her hard until the power level hits the gold line, then pull her up sharp but smooth. Ready?”

Why did people always ask you that just before you did something massively unwise? Still, onward for Queen and country. I took a rather shaky but deep breath and started her down the runway, listening to Haines’s instructions. Throttle in hard, watch the speedometer, feet on the rudder bar to control her yaw and keep her straight, keep the paddles at the right angle to catch the headwind’s lift and keep the airflow silky and fluid, listen to the quiet roar of the aether/petroleum engine at the stern, feel the shuddering of the frame in every atom of my body… and now! Now. The gold line on the power level monitor gleamed and glinted, and I pulled back on the joystick…. Keep it smooth! Keep it smooth… and up she went, whispering into the sky with the gentle fluidity of thick cream sliding over plate glass.

Beside me, Haines kept up an unflustered monologue of encouragement. “Ease her back a trifle, let the wind catch her… good, good. Feel the turbos kicking in? That will give you all the throttle power you need. Five hundred feet… level her out now. Throttle back… bring her around to port… excellent, Lancaster. Well done. Very smooth.”

I glanced down as the edges of Londinium slid away under us and we headed northwest, out toward St. Albans. Before us were the rising Chiltern hills and the browning quilt patch of Buckinghamshire’s rich farmlands basking in the mild sun of a clear late-autumn day. Behind us and to the left squatted the great black bulk of Londinium, huddled under its usual pall of smokes and steams. The air there was so thick with vapor that the buildings were little more than a dark mass in the murky brume. But here, out over the fields, we were far enough outside the city for the air to be cleaner and clear.

The sky curved above us, a bright blue overhead fading to something yellower at the horizon, streaked with thin white clouds. The sun was climbing up toward noon a little to our left and to our stern, sending our shadow sliding and slithering diagonally up the hillsides. Beneath us, the engines throbbed, the heart of the ship beating out a gentle, monotonous thrum of mechanical life. When I touched the controls, she responded with all the eager energy of a thoroughbred in a race. The earth beneath me rolled away—remote, beautiful, an exquisitely detailed toy landscape of field and wood and little villages made by some great mechanic.

The green-brown of hills and fields blurred for a moment, and I had to blink, every limb light and every sense sharp and clear, riding out the surge of joy that had me glowing as if the sun had taken refuge under my ribs.

The skies were mine again. Icarus was reborn, thrusting aloft on wings of gold.

And just for a moment, I was a god, striding through the heavens like a Colossus.

 

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The Lancaster’s Luck series is set in a steampunk world where, in 1900, the eight powerful Convocation Houses are the de facto rulers of the Britannic Imperium. In this world of politics and assassins, a world powered by luminiferous aether and phlogiston, and where aeroships fill the skies, Captain Rafe Lancaster, late of Her Majesty’s Imperial Aero Corps, buys a coffee house in one of the little streets near the Britannic Museum in Bloomsbury.

So begins the steampunk-coffee house adventure/mystery m/m romance.

To find out more about Rafe’s world, use the Lancaster’s Luck drop-down menu above.

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