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Familiar Diversions

I'm a librarian who loves anime, manga, and reading a wide variety of genres.

Currently reading

Lying in Wait
Liz Nugent
Progress: 186/310 pages
The Shape of Water
Guillermo del Toro, Daniel Kraus
Progress: 72/313 pages
To Siri with Love: A Mother, Her Autistic Son, and the Kindness of Machines
Judith Newman
Princess Prince
Tomoko Taniguchi
Progress: 310/336 pages
Other Minds: The Octopus, the Sea, and the Deep Origins of Consciousness
Peter Godfrey-Smith
Progress: 41/255 pages
FREE: Locke & Key
Tatiana Maslany, Audible Studios, Joe Hill, Gabriel Rodríguez, Kate Mulgrew, Haley Joel Osment, Full Cast
Progress: 91/806 minutes

Clockwork Gold by Jenny Schwartz

Clockwork Gold - Jenny Schwartz

First, full disclosure: the author and I follow each other on BookLikes and have occasionally commented on each other's posts. When she announced that Clockwork Gold would briefly be free, I snatched it up, because steampunk romance appeals to me. (This was a year or so ago – it's no longer free, but it is cheap.)

Rebecca Jones is a dirigible pilot with a rock solid reputation among the miners and prospectors in the Goldfields of Western Australia. Because they trust her enough not to shoot her down as a potential spy, she's able to go where many other dirigible pilots can't. However, she knows it'll take more than just her word to deal with the corruption in Kalgoorlie. She needs proof, but the arrival of Nathan Burton, Special Agent to the Crown, makes the situation more complicated than she expected.

I downloaded this because of its description and because it was free – I didn't even bother to read the excerpt. Which I'm mentioning because one particular detail took me by surprise: Rebecca and Nathan are estranged foster siblings. I'm not a fan of “siblings but not really” romance. It tends to hit my personal squick buttons. Nathan first joined the Tanner household when he was 14 and Rebecca was 11 (I think), so they weren't very young children, and it was clear that Nathan never thought of Rebecca as his younger sister. Unfortunately, I didn't get quite as clear a feeling from Rebecca, and so the speed with which she went from seeing Nathan as a family member (?) she'd once wronged to seeing him as a handsome man who was attracted to her and who she was attracted to in turn didn't work for me.

That said, I liked them as individuals. They both had a strong sense of justice, although Rebecca was more straightforward and naive in her methods for achieving it than Nathan was. I was horrified when I realized how she was planning to get the proof she needed, although thankfully she'd planned things out better than I feared (but still). It also helped that the villain was overconfident.

All in all, not bad, despite my “OMG they're foster siblings” moment. The Western Australian setting was a nice departure from steampunk romance's usual London or somewhere in America. I do wish there had been more of an opportunity to see Rebecca's mechanical creations in action, though, rather than just read about the aftermath of them going off.


(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)