The gaslight and shadows of the underground city of Recoletta hide secrets and lies. When Inspector Liesl Malone investigates the murder of a renowned historian, she finds herself stonewalled by the all-powerful Directorate of Preservation – Recoletta’s top-secret historical research facility.
When a second high-profile murder threatens the very fabric of city society, Malone and her rookie partner Rafe Sundar must tread carefully, lest they fall victim to not only the criminals they seek, but the government which purports to protect them. Knowledge is power, and power must be preserved at all costs…
“With Regency-era sensibilities and Agatha Christie’s flair for the subtle conundrum, Patel’s debut novel introduces readers to a subterranean city of the future, centuries after what is dubbed ‘The Catastrophe’, and beautifully manages the delicate balance between entertainment and social commentary. The subtly fantastical story is resplendent with surprisingly deep villains, political corruption, and a gripping whodunit feel.”
– Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
“The Buried Life excels on many levels, quite apart from its presentation of strong female characters: it’s a cracking whodunnit with sufficient twists and turns to make Agatha Christie proud, a vivid portrayal of a vibrant multicultural society, and an intriguing love story.”
"The Buried Life is a well-paced and enigmatic fantasy novel that will delight fans of urban fantasy."
"The Buried Life artfully sets a who-dunit murder mystery in a dystopian underground city filled with dark politics and foul secrets. It's a gripping read from start to finish, with two clever female leads and a delightfully colorful cast. More, please!"
-Beth Cato, author of THE CLOCKWORK DAGGER
“The Buried Life is a dark, imaginative steampunk gem – tailor-made for mystery fans and history nerds alike, with plenty of cops-and-robbers to keep you on your toes. This is a very fine contribution to the genre.”
–Cherie Priest, author of Boneshaker and Maplecroft
“Vaguely steampunk-ish but not quite classifiable, The Buried Life is recommended for readers comfortable straddling the border of fantasy and sci-fi; dedicated fantasists and hard sci-fi fans may want to go down another hole.”
–Books, Brains, and Beer
“The main characters here were all quite fascinating — nuanced, layered, realistic. The world and the characters were fascinating, the plot was fast-paced and action-packed. It was a great read.”
–In Case of Survival
“Patel’s voice is her own. I was impressed. Patel’s debut novel is definitely worth reading.”
“I like a novel that challenges you AND gives you enough information to figure it out. I loved this novel and look forward to Ms. Patel’s next.”
-Koeur’s Book Reviews
“The Buried Life is one of those books where you get much more than you had bargained for. Carrie Patel introduces the reader to a very interesting world, which besides several explanations only raises many more questions. The whole setting of the book is cleverly build by mixing up several of the established genres, Carrie Patel has created a very unique and intriguing blend. The Buried Life is a high recommendation, you don’t come by these types of books very often, great reading stuff.”
–The Book Plank
“Carrie Patel has conceived of a dark steampunk-esque yet futuristic world filled with anachronisms that, despite that, work well together. It’s as if this world has been cobbled together from past cultures and times, which is not as unusual as it may sound, to make for an underground claustrophobic world that you can almost feel pressing down on your head and soul. This is Book #1 in a new series and I’m really looking forward to Book #2!”
– Popcorn Reads
“I really enjoyed the novel, Patel’s descriptions are strong and evoke Recoletta quite clearly. The narrative builds up to a clear climax…I can’t wait to return to Recoletta. If you enjoy your SFF a bit off the beaten path or genre mashups in general, then I highly recommend giving Carrie Patel’s The Buried Life a shot.”
–A Fantastical Librarian
“While the story begins as a routine mystery, it quickly develops into something else entirely, and the tone drops more and more often into a darker mood…I think the worldbuilding was my favourite aspect of the book. The story sets up a promising storyline and an interesting world, and I’ll be curious to see how the things develop in the city of Recoletta.”