Seventeen-year-old Petra Wade, self-taught clockwork engineer, wants nothing more than to become a certified member of the Guild, an impossible dream for a lowly shop girl. Still, she refuses to give up, tinkering with any machine she can get her hands on, in between working and babysitting her foster siblings.
When Emmerich Goss—handsome, privileged, and newly recruited into the Guild—needs help designing a new clockwork system for a top-secret automaton, it seems Petra has finally found the opportunity she’s been waiting for. But if her involvement on the project is discovered, Emmerich will be marked for treason, and a far more dire fate would await Petra.
Working together in secret, they build the clockwork giant, but as the deadline for its completion nears, Petra discovers a sinister conspiracy from within the Guild council … and their automaton is just the beginning.
2.5 of 5 Stars
We started out learning about Petra and how much she wants to become an engineer. The society she lives in is sexist and operates under a heavy caste system. The poor don’t get ahead, especially if they happen to be women. The way women are treated isn’t glossed over in the least. Because it’s all coming from the perspective of someone in the position – I think it’s easier to relate to her. I instantly felt for her because of this. She has this dream and passion and will do anything to fulfill it. Then all of the action starts taking place but it felt like it quickly got drowned out by this very intense romantic interlude. I don’t mind romance but this relationship felt a bit over the top. There were instances that seemed so elaborate and drawn out it would actually push me out of the story entirely. I wanted more of the action, more of the Petra who had a strong passion for engineering. I didn’t mind that she fell in love but it almost felt like she began putting her passion more into her new love interest than the engineering. The steampunk themes were very well detailed through out the book and I appreciated the glossary at the end. In the way that the movie Titanic is more about a romance happening on a sinking ship, I felt this was more a romance happening in an older steampunk society that happened to have some series conflict going on. If you really like young adult romance I think this would be a book for you to enjoy.
FTC Disclosure: I received this free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion of the book and I was provided with no other compensation.