Wednesday 9 June 2010

Review: Clockwork Heart - Dru Pagliasotti

Genre: Fantasy romance steampunk
Pages: 392
Published: 2008

Taya soars over Ondinium on metal wings. She is an icarus, a courier privileged to travel freely across city's sectors and mingle indiscriminately among its castes. But even she cannot outfly the web of terrorism, loyalty, murder, and intrigue that snares her after a daring mid-air rescue. Taya finds herself entangled with the Forlore brothers, scions of an upperclass family: handsome, brilliant Alister, who sits on Ondinium's governing council and writes programs for the Great Engine; and awkward, sharp-tongued Cristof, who has exiled himself from his caste and repairs clocks in the lowest sector of the city. Both hide dangerous secrets, in the city that beats to the ticking of a clockwork heart... 

So yes, fantasy romance steampunk is what I ended up calling this book. It takes place in another world, fantasy, there is a bit more romance so therefore romance. And last, the steampunk bit. This is not sci-fi, it is a society that has moved forward and you could place them sort of at the 19th century. There you have it.

Taya is an icarus, she flies with wings and delivers messages. She can fly freely in a society made up of three classes. The nobility, the middle class and the poor workers. One day she sees a wingferry with broken wires, it is going to fall and kill the people inside. She sets of for a rescue, knowing that her wings can't take that much and if she gets caught in the wires she will fall too. But she saves the day, and the woman and boy she rescues are excalted (the nobility). The ones that wear these huge covering clothes and always a mask. By saving these people she is thrown into another world. There is terrorism in the city because all do not think a big computer should decide everything, and the countries around wants the technology. Who can she really trust?

By saving the woman she gets a thank you from a man she delivers a message too, the woman's cousin. Alister, handsome, a flirt, and a great programmer. And his brother, the dark, brooding, Christof who has given up everything and lives with the poor fixing clocks.

Guess who I fell for, oh yes Christof, I had too, he was dark, angry, brooding, like this Rotchester/Darcy mix without the pride part of course. He yells at people, contradicts, and he is not that nice to her when she tries to be friendly. He has a big chip on his shoulder. While his brother is sweet, nice and such a flirt. Not to mention a total hunk. Taya is of course very attracted to him, but at the same time after meeting Christof a few times, well there is something there. Love triangle, I love that.

When I understood how the city worked then I liked this book. I did get  disappointed half way through, but had a change of heart. But then again at the end, well it kind of dragged, and suddenly there was more to tell. I do not know, perhaps I lost interest for a few pages cos I just wanted to know how the romance would end. That part may have lost the solid 4 I had thought of given this book.

But it still was a great book, and I just read that she is making more. I will totally read that. This is a great standalone novel, but the world is so fascinating that I wanted more. And if that source was correct then that is the case. I want to read more about Taya, and how ever she will choose, or chose, I am not telling ;)

There is murder, a mystery about who is trying to sabotage the big computer, and the program Alister wrote. And do not forget the romance part. The title is the name of the program Alister has written, btw.

Blodeuedd's Cover Thoughts: Now I know people on covers are not real, but the sometimes do look real, this girl just looks like she is from a computer program like Final Fantasy. Oh and Taya would not show her breasts like that.
Reason for reading. Own copy (thanks Amy C for recommending this one!!)
Final thoughts: A fascinating tale about a woman who flies with iron wings. Romance and terrorism. 


  1. Mmmm, I like the idea of steam punk,yet I am still to read a book like it. I hope to read Boneshaker this month, so that will be my first venture into steam punk. If I love it, I will be back to add this one to my list.

  2. oh sounds good to me - love dark, angry and broody! :) Best of all, it's Steampunk! :))

  3. I'm still trying to figure out what steampunk means, but I like the sound of the hero (dark and brooding, but I can do without the anger). Sounds like an interesting beginning to a series.

  4. B,

    Great review. I have this one on the tbr shelf. :)


  5. Vivienne
    I hope you enjoy that one, I do wanna read it too. This one is of course different. But still steamish.

    I know, mm brooding, lol, I fell at once, I did not stand a chance.

    Well the anger was mostly directed at the class system they had.
    Took me a while too to figure out the meaning.

    Ohhh nice :)

  6. I really need to get my butt moving and try out a steampunk novel. A Dorchester/Darcy mix in a hero...that sounds so good, no wonder you fell for him Blodeuedd *grin* and the world...very intriguing :)

  7. I am new to steampunk and still deciding if I like it or not.

  8. The guys in this book sounds so good, I could totally understand why the girl is falling for both of the guys. I like it already.

  9. Sounds like one worth reading and I'm fascinated by the metal wings.

  10. Leontine
    Even if he was so grouchy all the time, well little me did not stand a chance, lol. Yes try steampunk that is all I have to say,

    Considering this was my..3rd, I am pretty new too :) But I am liking it so far

    The handsome flirt is so understandable, but the other guy has heart :)

    Those were cool, not that I ever would fly with them, yikes.

  11. It wins points for having an intriguing premise. :)

    I think the first steampunk book I read was Neal Stephenson's The Diamond Age: Or, a Young Lady's Illustrated Primer.

  12. Lovely review B:

    This sounds like a wonderful fantasy story, I loved your descriptors. *g*

    Thanks so much for sharing!

  13. It sounds like this book has a little bit of everything thrown in there!!!

  14. This one looks fantastic! I love anything steampunk!

  15. Nice review...I've been hearing this title all over for awhile. I am going to have to try it.

  16. Chris
    Could to see some winning points there lol.
    Oh sounds interesting, will go and check those.

    Thanks Lea,
    I truly did enjoy it, I am so happy I got it for my bday *coughs* Well ok I did give bf a list ;)

    Hm, yes I guess so :) but it never gets messy.

    Then I would totally recommend it!

    That would be a good idea. Sure it had some down parts, but hey many books do have those

  17. i am loving this Steampunk genre - I am loving everything that i have read so far..

    The romance are all secondary to me -it's the world, the build up and the chase that grabs me..

    If you get a chance check out White Chapel Gods...


  18. Ohhh never heard of that one before. It's sounds like something I could like. I love the brooding hero and all.
    And I always wanted to try steampunk.
    Thanks for the review.

  19. EH
    The world is sure cool, but I will never say no to a bit of romance :)
    I must check out that book you mentioned, cos I do want more

    Do try it, he is so so well brooding lol

  20. This book sounds great! I've added it to my Goodreads wishlist.

    Love your description of Christof, sounds like a literary guy I could fall for ;)



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