The premise is very interesting and detailed. The alternate history is a little hard to get into, but then I could totally see how Davidson’s version is plausible (which makes it all the more exciting). The characters are likable and relatable, but it’s obvious were only scratching the surface here and there will be a sequel or two. And unfortunately there is very little satisfaction in this first novel.
I am fan of the Victorian/Edwardian era historical fiction so this is my kind of book; and if it’s not your kind of book I can see how The Explosionist could be very hard to get into and off-putting. You’ll most enjoy this book if you’re aware of what was actually going on during the time period so you can puzzle over the differences.
All in all, a well written, quirky YA novel for a history/science buff. I’m looking forward to the sequel.
P.S. - I love the cover. Isn't it pretty?