The Clockwork Crown

clockwork-crown-678x1024It’s been over a year since I introduced my readers to Beth Cato and her book, The Clockwork Dagger. Since then, she has been hard at work with more publications, more baking, and more steampunk!

I’ve finally finished her sequel to The Clockwork Dagger a few weeks ago and I will admit that it took me longer than the first book. This has nothing to do with The Clockwork Crown being less engaging than the first book, but with me knowing that this is the only planned sequel at the moment.

General Spoilers!!
Ms. Cato picks up her story with Octavia and Alonzo pretty much where she’d left off at the end of Dagger, with the two of them journeying across Caskentia and looking to escape their pursuers. They have bounded since the first book, but Ms. Cato is quick to remind her readers (in a few short paragraphs) what has happened. I never felt like I was being reminded or treated like an idiot as she gently reminded what had already occurred to Octavia and Alonzo and eased me back into their world.

Ms. Cato is adept at weaving the narrative together with both the past and present actions, adding new characters, and keeping the story moving forward. At the same time, she expands the world they live in, adding more information (explaining the gremlins—reintroducing Leaf) and creating villains that we want to root both for and against.

By the end of the book, I was anxiously turning the pages (and being thankful I bought the Kindle version so I couldn’t flip to the end and check to make sure everything turned out all right.) I’ve read quite a few books lately where the heroine is in danger until the last page and I was on the edge of my seat waiting to find out what Octavia’s fate would be. Ms. Cato didn’t disappoint and left me hanging until the very end. Although she hasn’t planned (that I know of) to write a sequel to this book, she did leave it a bit open to writing something else. Still the conclusion was satisfying and I look forward to reading more work by her.

Meanwhile, if you enjoy steampunk, I greatly suggest getting ahold of this series
The Clockwork Dagger
The Clockwork Crown
The Deepest Poison (ebook only)
Wings of Sorrow and Bone (ebook only)

And follow Ms. Cato at her blog.

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The Boys of Downcrash

Recently I had the treat of reading an ARC for The Boys of Downcrash by London Casey. Although I own some other books by this author, this is the first one I’ve actually sat down to read.

I was pleasantly surprised. I’m not much of a romance reader, unless it has an element of supernatural or history to it, but this was a good, fun read.

**Some Slight Spoilers Follow**

The book is actually a reprint of the three Downcrash novels, The Stronger, Safer Kind (which is Scarlett and Tripp’s story), Torn to Pieces (Maggie and Tatum’s story), and Some Kind of Hell (Annie and Logan’s story). I think it actually reads better as one book since the three all tie together. The boys are all childhood friends and are in a band together (gotta love rockers!) and the girls all know each other. (Scarlett and Maggie are roommates, which Maggie and Annie are old friends.)

Maggie is familiar with the band and in the first book drags Scarlett along to a show after she has a bad night. An encounter with Tripp leads to the girls becoming more involved with the band. Instead of just being fans, they become the Girls of Downcrash, slowly becoming the lovers and then girlfriends of the band. But it’s not all music and roses.

Each of the boys (and girls) has a problem that creates a roadblock in their relationship. And that’s what keeps you reading this book.

Ms. Casey has created a wonderful, believable world with The Boys of Downcrash and I for one am hoping she’ll be revisiting it to let her readers know what has happened with the band and their girls!

The book is now available for purchase in kindle format on Amazon.