I am usually not very intrested in alternate history stories, where everything is the same as, for example, the historical 1860's but with a twist. Like, what if there was magic during the blitz or what if Nichlai Tesla invented a clone/transporting-machine?
This book however is great. The characters are likable and sympathetic. The alterations to our common, established history is within the realm of suspension of disbelif. The magic in use are very interesting and mystical and opens up for many avenues where continued stories may develop.
The writing style of Tim Powers is that of filling the pages like a glass of wine. He fills them just enough for the sidetastes to develop. He does not filling it to the brim where your own imagination is completely barred, but still enough to get a complete view of the situation and the mileu of the characters.
The story is in some parts slow moving, in others fast paced, with a balance between the quiet and loud moments. The narrative changes hands a few times, but not too jarring. Now, the story is amazing, with small moments that reflect the ever moving time. The jumps in time is never as simple as a policebox or the like, but is a hole in time and space the characters must launch themselves though.
All in all, an amazing read, that I highly recommend. Fantasy, sci-fi, romance, philosophy and action all find a place in this great book.