|Title: THE GIRL IN THE CLOCKWORK COLLAR
Author: Kady Cross
Series: Steampunk Chronicles #2
Cover Art: N/A
Genre: YA Steampunk
Reviewed by: Kristina
Sexual Content: Kissing and references to sex.
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.
THE GIRL IN THE CLOCKWORK COLLAR is an action packed prison break caper set in a fascinating steampunk world. I enjoyed the touches of steampunk technology throughout the book such as one character having a large mechanical panther and another riding a mechanical horse. I also loved that the famous inventor Tesla was an actual character here and not just referenced as the creator of some contraption that happens to help the characters save the day. Tesla himself even helps out in the final confrontation and I would have loved to have him in the story more; perhaps in his lab playing with his crazy inventions.
The story, which revolves around saving Jasper and Mei (the girl in the clockwork collar) from a former friend of Jasper’s, moved at an even pace for most of the part though I felt like there was too much time spent planning Jasper’s rescue than actually doing anything. Another problem was the clockwork collar itself. It is supposed to be a torture device, choking the victim if they tried to escape or displeased their captor, but there was never a scene where we got to see the collar in use which would have gone a long way towards making Mei’s plight more dire.
I enjoyed the concept of the ‘prison break’ plot but having not read the previous book, I couldn’t completely connect with the characters or their motivations. For example, I never fully understood the reason the group was trying so desperately to save Jasper. I would have liked some sort of reference to the previous book that better defined his relationship with the other characters so that I could understand their motivation for the rescue attempt.
And while Finley came off as pretty confident and I liked that she could definitely fend for herself especially while wearing a corset, the fact that she was apparently struggling to balance two separate personalities was just stated rather than shown.
I really liked certain elements of THE GIRL WITH THE CLOCKWORK COLLAR such as the action packed fight sequences and world building but was confused over some of the characterization which impeded my understanding of their personalities and motives.