Rating: Loved (Hated-Disliked-Okay-Liked-Loved)
I've said it before and I'll say it again: Carole Cummings is one great author.
Blue on Black is a hard book to classify. It's not fantasy, but it kind of feels a little like it. It's kind of steampunk, but not really. It's set in the old west (sort of), but it's not a western. It's got M/M in it, but romance is only a small subplot -- the main character is gay, and he has a love interest, but it's far from the focus of the story.
I'm not sure if the world was post-apocalyptic or some other sort of like-earth planet -- I'm leaning towards the latter, but it could go either way. In it there's Tech (capital T), which is sort of like... energy. Sort of. There are things like psyTech (dealing with reading minds), medTech (health/doctors), gridTech (creating and powering technology), weatherTech (controlling the weather), etc. Not everyone can do it -- far from it. People with that talent are rare.
A number of Techs go missing, and Bas, a Tracker (an agent of the government who finds things or people), sets out to find them. What he finds instead is a snakes' nest mixed with things no one of this world ever knew existed.
If this review sounds like a lot of "I don't know", that's because it is. Even by the end of the book, I was so unsure about so much... and I loved that! This is one of those cases where the author really trusts her readers -- she does not lay down every fact of the world for us, and that was great. The whole thing, from world to characters, was just so interesting!
And speaking of the characters, I suspect she must have had one of those charts to keep track of the motives of all of them.
Every character had their own motives, sometimes working with the others, sometimes at cross-purposes with them.
And the author's writing! Her technical writing, I mean. AMAZING! She uses wording and sentence length and such to build tension and set mood and it's just so wonderful. I wish more writers had that skill.
All in all, this was one enjoyable read!
Currently reading: Dun Lady's Jess.