My Brother’s Keeper by Tim Powers

My Brother’s Keeper by Tim Powers has just recently been published and Jack was sent a copy of the book for review in ParSec, He thought that I would be interested in reading it as it involves the Bronte family. I did quite enjoy it, especially at the beginning. It eventually took me a bit out of my usual orbit – no bad thing now and again I suppose. The book is well written and apparently the author is regarded as one of the founders of Steampunk.

The history of the Bronte family is well known and the author has taken the facts and written a fantasy/horror tale around them. The family is down to just the three sisters and Branwell, plus Patrick the father. They’ve all had their time away from The Parsonage and are back home, things hadn’t gone well for any of them and Branwell has been taken over by his addiction to alcohol. While he was away in London (on a three day bender) he had somehow been sought out by people who knew who he was although he didn’t know them. They damaged his hand and recruited him unwillingly as a – werewolf!!

It turns out that he wasn’t the only one in the family to be targeted, it has been going on for two generations, and their father Patrick has been trying to keep werewolves and ghosts at bay for years, hence his habit of firing bullets at the church every morning!

The blurb on the back says:

Though the future will celebrate Charlotte, Emily and Anne, right now they are unknown,, their genius concealed. In just a few short years they will all be dead, and it will be the middle sister Emily’s chance encounter with a greviously wounded man on the moor that sets them on the path to their doom.

For there is an ancient pagan secret haunting the moors, a dark inheritance in the family bloodline and something terrible buried under an ogham-inscribed slab in the church. Not only are their lives at stake, but their very souls.

I ended up quite enjoying the book although I’m not at all into werewolves, ghosts and dark magic. It was a wee bit spooky that the book features Sulis Minerva, just after we had seen her image at the Roman Baths in Bath though.

It was an apt read for the Halloween season.