Review: The Osiris Ritual

Posted: August 2, 2010 by in Books We Like (4/5 single_star) Meta: George Mann, Steampunk

George Mann is awesome. That is all.

OK, that really isn’t all we are going to say, but it covers our opinions nicely. George Mann has given readers quite the year. If you were late to the party, you got THE AFFINITY BRIDGE (EBR Review). You also got GHOSTS OF MANHATTAN (EBR Review). In the UK you got THE IMMORALITY ENGINE. And now here in the US, THE OSIRIS RITUAL (Amazon) has finally been released. How great is that?

THE OSIRIS RITUAL is the second of Mann’s Newbury & Hobbes novels, and it fits perfectly with the theme and quality of the first novel. Newbury, as you will recall, is very reminiscent of Sherlock Holmes, and Hobbes is his Watson… only female. The main plot of OSIRIS revolves around a series of murders taking place after the unveiling of a recently discovered mummy. To get much more into the plot would reveal too much, so we will leave it at that.

Mann’s Newbury & Hobbes novels seem to follow a formula of sorts. We have an interesting beginning, a large chase scene in the middle, an action-packed ending, followed by and epilogue that introduces and continues an over-arching conflict. So, there is your warning. If you read THE AFINNITY BRIDGE (which you SHOULD have), the structure of OSIRIS will be very familiar, as will the pacing.

THE OSIRIS RITUAL is Sherlock Holmes steampunk, so won't change how you view the world, but it will make it more enjoyable.

Newbury himself is devolving further into opium addiction, further making him familiar to the Sherlock Holmes readers of the world (who know of Holmes’ cocaine addiction). It is a terrific conflict, especially with how it spills over into his professional life, and his interactions with his friends. Hobbes gets more “screen-time” in this novel, but still manages to feel a tad underused until, like in book one, the epilogue. The cast of side-characters are fantastic, and serve the story well. One thing we do wish, however, is for a bit clearer-cut interaction with the Osiris Ritual itself (you’ll know what we mean when you read it). At times, it seemed almost irrelevant.

These novels aren’t got to make you stop an reconsider the world. They are Sherlock Holmes Steampunk mystery novels. If you know that going in, you will love every bit. If we have one desire for this series, it is that in future installments, the line between science and the occult becomes even more murky.

  • Recommended Age: 14+
  • Language: One word the entire novel
  • Violence: Yeah, these books never lack for it. It is well executed, and not near as extreme as in Mann's GHOSTS OF MANHATTAN. Essentially, expect more of the same from THE AFFINITY BRIDGE.
  • Sex: No, not in this series

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