Phoenix Rising and The Janus Affair –Book Review

A Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences Novels both Phoenix Rising and the Janus Affair are written by Pip Ballantine and Tee Morris.

Both Novels follow two British secret agents that deal with odd, weird, or peculiar occurrences. It’s a formula that works well for X-files, Warehouse 13, and countless cop shows. It works wonderfully with these two characters. The Explosive and flippant female lead and the bookish conservative male, play off each other wonderfully.

Below is my review. For more information on how and why I review books read my post here.


Compared to Victorian novels or fantasy novels these books casts are relatively small. It would be easy to have each agent be a cookie cutter trope but every agent from the ministry is unique and interesting.

The two main characters have deep and interesting stories that are slowly parsed out at key moments. Always keeping you wanting more.

For characters, I give it 4 out of 5

Writing Style

The novels are “Steampunk” and are written with a great balance between Victorian and modern styles. The language is older and the storyline refers to a lot of historical facts but the style is still quick and action packed. That being said there are times that it felt like the authors were trying a little too hard to both mimic the Victorian style and subvert its misconceptions.

I give it 3 out of 5.


The story is fast, action packed, and feels like a good action adventure movie. There are robots, sexy assassins, and awesome mysteries. It’s everything you want in a great pulp novel.

I give the story 4 out of 5


These books are fun from cover to cover. If you enjoy action adventure you’ll love these books.

I give it 5 out of 5 for fun


Final score is 80%

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