Ryan Van Loan's The Sin in the Steel is a sparkling debut fantasy set in a diverse world, featuring dead gods, a pirate queen, shapeshifting mages, and a Sherlockian teenager determined to upend her society.
Heroes for hire. If you can pay.
Her mind leaps from clues to conclusions in the blink of an eye.
No. Not in crime—in crime-solving.
They’ve been hired for their biggest job yet—one that will set them up for a life of ease.
If they survive.
Buc and Eld are the first private detectives in a world where pirates roam the seas, mages speak to each other across oceans, mechanical devices change the tide of battle, and earthly wealth is concentrated in the hands of a powerful few.
It’s been weeks since ships last returned to the magnificent city of Servenza with bounty from the Shattered Coast. Disaster threatens not just the city’s trading companies but the empire itself. When Buc and Eld are hired to investigate, Buc swiftly discovers that the trade routes have become the domain of a sharp-eyed pirate queen who sinks all who defy her.
Now all Buc and Eld have to do is sink the Widowmaker's ship….
Unfortunately for Buc, the gods have other plans.
Unfortunately for the gods, so does Buc.
“A multilayered attack on tired adventure tropes. Two mercenaries, wrongly accused, are forced to investigate a crime, one that transforms them and their world forever. A blisteringly paced, amazingly fun and thoughtful read!”—Fran Wilde, Nebula Award winner, Hugo and World Fantasy Award finalist
“How can I not fall for a character who throws hot tea at people? Ryan Van Loan's swashbuckling Watson and Holmes fantasy debut The Sin in the Steel is like a wild ride on a pirate ship. He's created a vivid and amazing world that readers are going to love from page one.”—K.B. Wagers, author of Behind the Throne
"Ryan Van Loan delivers a swashbuckling romp, demons, pirates, dead gods, (30-50?) feral hogs, a war-weary Watson and a guttersnipe Holmes. I can't wait to see what's next."—Max Gladstone, author of Empress of Forever
“Buc reminds [me] of a [teenage] Alexander Hamilton, if Hamilton were into stabbing and mayhem. Sharpen your poignards and buckle your swashes for some foul-mouthed, high seas, sacrilegious anarchy with your favorite teenage smartass and her soul-searching, shell-shocked best pal. Ryan Van Loan has created a world thick with intrigue in his debut novel.”—Fantasy Book Review