Sunday, July 29, 2012

[Review] The Girl in the Clockwork Collar by Kady Cross

(#2, Steampunk Chronicles)
Steel Corset | Clockwork Collar

Author: Kady Cross
Publication (dd/mm/yyyy): 01/06/201
Publisher: Harlequin Teen Aus
Pages: 360
Source: For review

Violence | Sexual Content | Profanity

My Rating:
Good read
Summary (Spoilers if you have not read Steel Corset):
In New York City, 1897, life has never been more thrilling - or dangerous.

Sixteen-year-old Finley Jayne and her "straynge band of mysfits" have journeyed from London to America to rescue their friend Jasper, hauled off by bounty hunters. But Jasper is in the clutches of a devious former friend demanding a trade-the dangerous device Jasper stole from him...for the life of the girl Jasper loves.

One false move from Jasper and the strange clockwork collar around Mei's neck tightens. And tightens.
My thoughts:

There is something so captivating about Kady Cross's storytelling that I can't quite put my finger on. Maybe it's the steampunk world that Cross has twisted out of Victorian Era London/New York. Or perhaps the characters that are so unimaginably, inhumanly untouchable but are still flawed in their very humanly humanness. Or even the fact that the villains are so delectably beautiful and evil that their eventual capture makes me both sigh in relief and long for their glorious, hideously malicious return. Whatever it may be, one thing is for certain: I want more.

The Girl in the Clockwork Collar continues where Steel Corset left off. Finley, Griffin, Sam and Emily head off to New York on a mission to save their friend Jasper, who was taken on the suspicion of murder. They must find out exactly what happened and hopefully get to the bottom of all of this. Meanwhile, Jasper is faced with the past. When he left the States, he left behind the love of his life, Mei, and now she is a kind of hostage. A weapon used against him. And the man in charge is rich and powerful and is doing this for a machine that Jasper stole from him. This machine will make its owner practically invincible - that is why Jasper broke it apart before he left for London. Finley takes it upon herself to get into the criminal's gang so that she can gather information, but can she keep her dark side at bay or will it claim her?

I don't think I can ever get tired of these characters. This tight-knit group has each others' backs and we see this even more in the second installment of this series. Finley intrigues me, Emily is so endearing and fascinating, Sam is effortlessly strong and brooding, and Griffin is swoonworthy as heck-all. However, at this point in the series I've got to say my heart goes out to Jasper. We learn about this guy who was seen as the handsome stranger shrouded in mystery in the first book, and now that we know what happened in the past, his mannerisms make sense. I really hope that we see more of him in the next book!

And of course there are dabs of romance pitched here and there - heck, the main plot point of this book is the result of Jasper's love for Mei. Then there are the power couples Finley & Griffin and Emily & Sam who are just way too adorable to watch. Not much more else to say about it, but look forward to the cuteness.

It does take a while for the story to actually lift off. Much of that can be attributed to the third-person, multiple perspectives writing style that Cross utilises. Once I was halfway through, however, I did not want to stop reading. Cross took me for a ride, every now and again surprising me by throwing me something I was just not expecting at all.

If you read and loved Steel Corset, the decision on whether or not to continue on should be a no-brainer. It's so much fun, and you'll probably even find yourself lost over at Five Points or the Empire State Building. It's (slightly twisted) New York, baby!


First lines: 

"What are you doing?"
         Finley Jayne smiled in the darkness. She should have known Griffin would come looking for her. Gripping the slender prow with both hands, she glanced over her shoulder and saw him standing just inside the dirigible's softly lighted observation deck. The wind blew strands of hair into her face. "Finding out how it feels to fly," she replied.


"I think you like feeling responsible. Just so ye know, it's not a terribly attractive trait in a man, this brooding and moaning."
"This, coming from the girl who thinks the sun rises and sets on Sam Morgan? Bit hypocritical, don't you think?"

(p. 296)



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I have received this review copy in return for an honest review.

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