Written by: Kady Cross
Released: May 24, 2011 by Harlequin Teen
Summary: In 1897 England, sixteen-year-old Finley Jayne has no one…except the "thing" inside her.
When a young lord tries to take advantage of Finley, she fights back. And wins. But no normal Victorian girl has a darker side that makes her capable of knocking out a full-grown man with one punch….
Only Griffin King sees the magical darkness inside her that says she's special, says she's one of them. The orphaned duke takes her in from the gaslit streets against the wishes of his band of misfits: Emily, who has her own special abilities and an unrequited love for Sam, who is part robot; and Jasper, an American cowboy with a shadowy secret.
Griffin's investigating a criminal called The Machinist, the mastermind behind several recent crimes by automatons. Finley thinks she can help—and finally be a part of something, finally fit in.
But The Machinist wants to tear Griff's little company of strays apart, and it isn't long before trust is tested on all sides. At least Finley knows whose side she's on—even if it seems no one believes her.
Months ago I had featured this in one of my Wish List Wednesdays and had fallen in love with both the cover and the summary. Imagine my supreme happiness when it was one of the novels on netGalley and I was able to read an eARC version of it.
I fell in love with this story, but it did take me a few chapters to get into the swing of it. From chapter one Finley is one bad ass lady. After all, how many chamber maids have steel boning in their corsets? Or can throw a decent punch as well as take one. But then there was the sudden change of character perspectives which threw me until I knew that there was going to be only three different ones. But, like I said, after the first few chapters I was completely immersed and hooked.
I have definitely found a new love in the steampunk genre and this one was done amazingly well. I loved the idea of the Organites and what they could fully do. I thought that they really gave an extra bit to the story and made it so that you were never sure what was going to happen next. Then there was the amazing mixture of completely futuristic machines with Victorian England and the slight science fiction bits.
This is a novel with a twisted web of plotlines. In some books it can be way too much for a reader to really enjoy the story, but with this novel they all intermingle so well together that it just adds to the experience. I especially liked how the story pulled in some of the classics; Journey to the Centre of the Earth and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde were two of them, but it also mentions in passing Jack the Ripper and other historically relevant bits. I just thought it was so smart. Plus, the science is astounding; I was floored by what I read during so many parts of the novel.
This was an amazing debut and the fact that it solidified my new found interest in steampunk was just an added bonus. Plus, it does have a little bit of everything from scifi to romance to fantasy. I honestly cannot wait until the next novel is released, especially since this one was left on such a horrible cliff-hanger.
If you can, grab a copy of this novel. If it sounds like something you will enjoy then it should be right up your alley. And if you haven’t tried steampunk yet, this is a great one to start with. I give it an 8.5/10.
Special thanks to Harlequin Teen and netGalley for enabling me to read an eARC copy of this novel.