Thomas Niggle grew up a mudlark, hunting for scrap on the polluted banks of the River Burr. One of the countless poor living in the shadows of Mercer Shackleton’s vast factories, he has dragged himself out of poverty using his mechanical skills. An encounter with Gloria Shackleton, the Mercer’s daughter, offers Niggle the possibility of love, but it also offers something else, deep in the heart of the Mercer’s domain.
What hope can the future hold for a boy raised amidst the mud and brass?
From reader reviews:
‘Highly entertaining! Love the detailed descriptions of the main locations – I could almost hear the racket and smell the mud.’
‘This story held my attention throughout… It is well written, with characters who engaged my sympathy, and a suspenseful plot.’
‘I found myself drawn in to the world of this story right from the first page. The descriptions are vivid and the characters have a surprising amount of depth for a short work of fiction. The ending was fantastic.’
‘Aware of the sometimes devastating effects of the industrial revolution where much of steampunk is not, this short story was a breath of fresh air.’
‘I’m not usually a fan of short stories but I love this. Andrew Knighton paints a vivid picture and sweeps you up in the story from the very start. An excellent read.’
You can also read a full review by Scott A. Butler.