Tales from the Archives: Volume 1 (Tales from the Archives #1)

by Philippa Ballantine

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Synopsis

Tales from the Archives are short stories set in the world of the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences. They explore events mentioned in the novels, characters seen and unseen and may include novel teasers of things to come.

This volume includes:

The Evil that Befell Sampson by Pip Ballantine- Eliza D Braun is a young field agent in the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences (South Pacific Branch) when she is asked by New Zealand's preeminent suffragist to investigate some strange goings within the organisation. She cannot possibly imagination that this little case will alter her entire life and thrust her into a world barely prepared for her.

Dust on the Davenport by O M Grey - Agent Simon R. Boswell, still considered the green agent of the Ministry, takes on his own a supposed haunting in Islington. Hauntings tend to be nothing too serious for agents specializing in the unexplained; but for Simon, this case supplies surprises of all kinds, around every corner…

The Astonishing Amulet of Amenartas by Nathan Lowell- Agent Heathcliff Durham finds himself crisscrossing Africa, looking for an Amulet that could spell disaster for any who come near it. Battling blistering heat, starvation, wild animals, and despair, he is not comforted by the company of a rough and ready sort named Morrison. Soon Durham begins to suspect he may never return home—and to top it all off the tea has almost run out.

A Ruby in Rain by Grant Stone - From the farthest edge of the Empire, New Zealand agents Lachlan King and Barry Ferguson are called to interview a recent arrival to Auckland’s prisons. An infamous gambler, according to the constable’s account, has turned himself into their custody, not for the safety of society but for his own. The Ministry steps in to uncover a man’s story of impressive luck, and more incredible vision.

Story Elements

Ratings Factors

Language: No profanity or censor words
Sexual Content: Sexual acts implied but not described
Target Audience Age: Everyone (no target age)
Violence: Death, but minimal violence

Setting

Geography: Earth
Realism: Science well beyond modern definitions, bordering on fantasy
Setting Type: Urban (city)
Time Period: 1800 - 1899

Main Character

Age: Adult
Gender: Other or N/A
Race: Irrelevant
Religion: Irrelevant
Sexual Preference: Irrelevant or N/A

Styles & Themes

Humor: Moments of levity
Inspires Reader to Feel: N/A or None of the above
Mysteries & Puzzles: Significant mystery(ies) are core to driving the story
Pacing: Moves quickly
Physical Action: Frequent action, driven by threat to safety or life by antagonist(s)
Political/Social Commentary: Politics irrelevant to story
Romance: Minor romance, not a significant story driver
Genre Science Fiction
 
Realism:
  • World is similar to ours, but plot elements transcend modern science
  • Science stretched but possible (possible science of the near future)
  • Science of far future, attempts for rigorous accuracy
  • Science well beyond modern definitions, bordering on fantasy
‐ or ‐
Setting Type:
  • Post-Apocalyptic
  • Space
‐ or ‐
Time Period:
  • 2020 - 2030
  • 2030 - 2050
  • 2050 - 2100
  • 2100 - 2200
  • 2200 - 3000
  • Far Future (3000+)

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About the author

Philippa Ballantine

New Zealand born fantasy writer and podcaster Philippa (Pip) Ballantine is the author of the Books of the Order and the Shifted World series. She is also the co-author with her husband Tee Morris of the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences novels. Her awards include an Airship, a Parsec, the Steampunk Chronicle Reader’s Choice, and a Sir Julius Vogel. She currently resides in Manassas, Virginia with her husband, daughter, and a furry clowder of cats.

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