Synopses & Reviews
A god has died, and it's up to Tara, first-year associate in the international necromantic firm of Kelethres, Albrecht, and Ao, to bring Him back to life before His city falls apart.
Her client is Kos, recently deceased fire god of the city of Alt Coulumb. Without Him, the metropolis's steam generators will shut down, its trains will cease running, and its four million citizens will riot.
Tara's job: resurrect Kos before chaos sets in. Her only help: Abelard, a chain-smoking priest of the dead god, who's having an understandable crisis of faith.
When Tara and Abelard discover that Kos was murdered, they have to make a case in Alt Coulumb's courts — and their quest for the truth endangers their partnership, their lives, and Alt Coulumb's slim hope of survival.
Set in a phenomenally built world in which justice is a collective force bestowed on a few, craftsmen fly on lightning bolts, and gargoyles can rule cities, Three Parts Dead introduces readers to an ethical landscape in which the line between right and wrong blurs.
"In the world of Gladstone's fascinating debut, gods communicate directly with their followers, and magic known as Craft is practiced like law. First-year associate Craftswoman Tara Abernathy; her mentor, Elayne Kevarian; and novice priest Abelard must resurrect the dead god Kos before his city of Alt Coulumb falls into disarray. The investigation takes on new dangers when they discover that Kos may have been murdered. The combination of legal thriller and steam-powered fantasy may seem improbable, but Gladstone makes it work with an appealing cast and a setting rich with imaginative details, like a priest who shows his devotion to a fire-god by chain-smoking, junkies getting high on vampire bites, cops who become part of a hive-mind when on duty, and the binding of divine power by legal contracts. Sometimes the sheer density of information threatens to overwhelm, but the story remains suspenseful and fast-paced throughout, and the diverse, female-led cast is a joy to follow through the fascinating and unusual landscape. Agent: Weronika Janczuk, Lynn Franklin Associates, in association with D4EO Literary Agency. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
“This has so many of my favorite things: an intriguing world, fun characters, a puzzle of a story that manages to be both funky fantasy and legal thriller. Three Parts Dead is simultaneously fast paced and thoughtful, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.” Carrie Vaughn, author of the Kitty Norville series
“Neil Gaiman and Jim Butcher are conjured for a China Miéville story about magical lawyers trying to revive a dead God in a steampunk city. Recommended: Hell yes!” Geek Speak Magazine
“Max Gladstone has evidently devised a necromantic steampunk machine that enabled him to channel the Roger Zelazny of Lord of Light, cathect the Neil Gaiman of American Gods, and subsume the oeuvre of John Grisham, all with the aim of producing loopy, metaphysically-minded legal thrillers.” James Morrow, author of The Last Witchfinder
“With his first book, Max Gladstone gives promise of being a true star of twenty-first century fantasy.” John Crowley, author of Little, Big and The Deep
“The combination of legal thriller and steam-powered fantasy may seem improbable, but Gladstone makes it work with an appealing cast and a setting rich in imaginative details...the story remains suspenseful and fast-paced throughout, and the diverse, female-led cast is a joy to follow through the fascinating and unusual landscape.” Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
“Max Gladstone has created a fascinating universe and equally fascinating characters....This is his first novel. I can't wait for his second.” Jerry Pournelle, author of The Mote in God's Eye and Lucifer's Hammer
“Sci-fi, fantasy and a murder mystery all rolled in one...exciting and fast paced with unexpected twists and turns. It culminates in a big surprise ending.” RT Book Reviews
A tale of intrigue, a murdered god, and the business of necromancy: an urban fantasy set in an alternate reality.
About the Author
Max Gladstone went to Yale, where he wrote a short story that became a finalist in the Writers of the Future competition. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts.