This is the story of two orphans – the stunningly beautiful Octavia and the stunningly ugly Modo. Both were rescued (or is it captured?) by the mysterious and powerful Mr Socrates. Octavia is smart, confident, and handy with a knife. Modo is extremely strong, fiercely loyal, and in love. He is also able to change his appearance for short periods of time – a very handy skill in their line of work as child spies for Mr Socrates.
Mr Socrates is a heartless bastard with a heavy heart. Even at the end of the book, I was left wanting to know more about him and about the other main characters. The book was instantly engaging, and although scenes that should have been horrifying weren’t as gripping as they could have been, I never stopped wanting to read the next page, and the next, and the next. Not even when the book was done.
Free sample (from the beginning):
Six hunting hounds had perished in previous experiments. Dr Cornelius Hyde crouched in the cellar of his manor staring over his spectacles at Magnus, the last surviving hound. The iron cage was sturdy, its door locked tight, and the dog looked healthy except for his drooping head. He had survived the operation that replaced his skull, jaws and teeth with metal, but the weight of it all was too much for him to bear for long periods of time.