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The Colonel and the Bee

Title: The Colonel and the Bee

Author: Patrick Canning

Published: 1st of June 2018 – Evolved Publishing LLC

Format: Ebook (Book Sirens) – 304 pages

Hello Hello! How are you?

I’ve been in a bit of a slumpy mood lately since finishing The Ship of Shadows by Maria Kuzniar, for The Write Reads tour, so if you’re reading this Dave, it’s your fault I can’t read anything right now, *only joking* aha!

Today I’m bringing you a review that I should have written last week, but I’ve not been feeling great so I only just finished the book today, and I’m glad I took my time with it because I ended up enjoying it much more than I probably would have had I pressured myself into finishing it sooner. Enough of my blathering, onto the review!

Thank you to Book Sirens for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, all opinions are my own.


The Amazing Beatrix works as an acrobat in a 19th Century circus, no home or family to speak of. When a daring escape from her abusive ringleader crosses Beatrix’s path with that of the daring adventurer Colonel James Bacchus, the unlikely pair team up, fly to safety aboard the Colonel’s miraculous four-story hot air balloon, and begin a grand quest to find the most precious gem in the world, The Blue Star Sphinx.

If the heroes can outmanoeuvre the deadly treasure hunters, escaped convicts, and double-crosses that await them, they may win the treasure they seek, or better yet, a sense of true belonging.

Witty banter, colourful characters, and exotic locations pack the fantastical, globe-trotting adventure that reads like Sherlock Holmes meets Around the World in Eighty Days.


The Colonel and the Bee by Patrick Canning is a science fiction steampunk novel, set in the 19th century in which we meet Beatrix and James who soon join forces to go on an adventure. I have to say that until I read the blurb again just now, I had struggled to figure out the actual time setting of this book as nothing in this story actually gave me an answer.

I was quite drawn to this book because the blurb sounded like something that would be right up my alley. I really love National Treasure, Indiana Jones and those types of films, so I was really excited when I saw this book on Book Sirens and decided to give it a go. I’m not sure that I would necessarily call it science fiction, I think I’m leaning towards an adventure novel because it just didn’t feel very science fiction-y to me. And I don’t know if Steampunk has a “feel” to it, but unfortunately, I didn’t really feel that here.

However, I did enjoy this book once I got into it. I struggled to understand whether I was just not enjoying it or if I was in a slump, and the more I pushed on with it, the more I eventually did like it. In this book, we have Beatrix, renamed Bee by James Bacchus, the Captain of the Oxford Starladder, an amazing-sounding hot air balloon. I have to say that I struggled with the characters and trying to grasp which time period they were in and what was actually happening, I do think that it was well-written, but sometimes it felt like the characters or the plot was going off on a tangent and I lost track of things a few times.

There was definitely more of an adventurous feel to this book, and I did like the whole adventure, treasure hunt and rival treasure hunting families plot, I just think that maybe it was a bit drawn out or flowery for my personal liking. I enjoyed this book more as I went on, and I can definitely see what would really appeal to people reading this book.

I loved the description of the Ox, it sounded like such a fun and unique place and I would love to have my own hot air balloon to travel the world, even though I’m terrified of heights aha! I also really enjoyed reading about Thelma and George, they were so lovely and just great characters. Bee and James were also quite intriguing to me even though at times I didn’t really know what they were doing or why they were doing it. I also quite enjoyed the descriptions of the places they visited and I think this is what I liked the most about this book.


Overall, this was a really intriguing story and there were a lot of things happening, on top of really eccentric characters and an amazing hot-air balloon. I struggled with it at first but enjoyed it more as I read on, even though I think this just wasn’t the book for me.

I gave this book 3 stars and I am sure that people will really enjoy it. I enjoyed the characters and their relationship together, the Ox hot-air balloon and the places that this team went to, the adventures they had and the treasure hunting plot which I really did enjoy. I recommend this book to people who enjoy historical fiction and adventure books with a twist!

That’s all for now, I hope you enjoyed this post, see you soon, stay safe,

Ellie xx

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If you would like to purchase this book, you can find it here: Amazon UK (affiliate link) – Amazon FR (affiliate link) – AbeBooks (affiliate link) – The Book Depository (affiliate link) – Audible FR (affiliate link) – Amazon USWaterstonesBarnes and NobleAudible UKKobo

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