Today we’re going into Arabia with Aladdin and His Wonderfully Infernal Device by Tee Morris. If you’ve ever read the story of Aladdin or seen the Disney movies, this will be very familiar to you.
It starts off with young thief Aladdin as he steals a gear from a vendor on the streets of Arabia. He is soon embraced by a famous magician claiming to be his long-lost uncle. Aladdin takes the man home to meet his mother. Although Aladdin’s mother takes the lad aside and reveals that in fact his father had no brothers, she still tells him to go with the imposter to find his destiny (despite their mutual belief that Uncle Jaha is up to no good). Aladdin grabs his mechanical flying carpet and sets off into the desert with his faux relative — who, surprise, surprise, soon betrays him.
Can the young hero unravel the steampunk trappings of the story and save his own hide in the process? You’ll just have to read to find out.
I’m torn on this one. Normally I’m more than fine with sending steampunk to settings it hasn’t been to before but in this case I don’t think it does enough to advance or enhance the Aladdin story. It’s pretty much the same story you remember, just with a little bit of steampunk thrown in.
Also, I didn’t particularly care what happened to Aladdin. He and his mother show remarkably bad judgment in regards to the obvious imposter uncle. If Morris had taken the Aladdin story as the foundation, added a lot more colorful characters and sent the story off into other directions, we could have had a hit here.