Monday, May 19, 2014

The Girl With the Windup Heart- Book Review

I cannot tell you how excited I was to be approved to read this next book in advance for a review. A couple of years ago, I had gotten interested in exploring the Steampunk genre. It was then I had found The Steampunk Chronicles by Kady Cross. I fell in love! The series is about Finley Jayne who has some... unusual talents... which get her in a lot of trouble. She then finds herself with a group of other misfits who have their own unusual talents, and together they fight against the evil which prowls about Victorian London!

Overall, if you are looking for a historically accurate story... don't read this series. However, if you like fun YA romance, some adventure, and steampunk, you'll enjoy it very much. On May 27, the fourth and final book in the series will be released, and I got to read it in advance! Warning:  if you haven't read the other books and novellas in the series, this review may have spoilers.

Release Date: May 27,2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Author: Kady Cross

Basic Summary Without Spoilers

While investigating some murders, Griffin King finds himself stuck in the Aether being used as a torture device to his arch-nemesis, The Machinest. Back at his manor, Finely and co. hatch up a plan for Finely to travel to the Aether to save him. While there, she runs into some unexpected ghosts from her past. 

Meanwhile, Jack Dandy has been busy helping Mila, the machine-become real girl. Basically, the steampunk version of Pinocchio. Naturally, Mila finds herself having feelings for Jack, and when he doesn't return her feelings, she runs away. To where? The circus of course! 

Thus begins the end of the Steampunk Chronicles. Let chaos and romance ensue!

My Thoughts

The Cover: Thankfully, they kept the same style of covers for the entire series. I don't know about you, but it really irks me when publishers and writers change the cover style in the middle of the series. I've been a fan of the cover designs the whole time. They're beautiful. However, I can't help but feel the portrait of the girl looks a bit too sophisticated. That is, if I'm assuming correctly she is supposed to be Mila. She just doesn't seem to fit the gentle and somewhat naive image of Mila I have in my mind. 

The Premise:  Basically, this story is to wrap up the plot lines which have been left unfinished by the other three books and three novellas. However, it was very simple. It went quickly, which is nice when you want a fun read. Yet, I felt like there could have been more to the story, and the conclusion seemed to be too simple. 

The Characters:  I really enjoyed how this one focused on Finley, Griffin, Mila, and Jack. I love the other characters as well, but when I read the other stories I always found myself wanting more of the previous four. Mila and Jack were also the best part of the book by far. Mila was so sweet and innocent, but strong and courageous. Then it was fun to see a softer side of Jack and how he took care of Mila. Seeing their relationship grow was endearing. Cross also showed us (spoiler!) Finley's father! I loved this part of the story when he came into the picture. We only saw him briefly, but he was a great addition.

The World:  The world of The Steampunk Chronicles wasn't anything new since I had read the previous books. However, I really enjoyed going deeper into the Aether. I had never fully understood what it was in this series and having much of the story taking place there I was able to picture it much better and see what it was. 

The Love Stories:  Windup Heart focused on two couples:  Finley and Griffin (who have been the main couple the whole series) and Mila and Jack. As much and I love Finley and Griffin, by the time this book came around I was bored with them. It was glaringly obvious they were in love and would be together forever. There didn't seem to be any real obstacles for them to overcome in their relationship. However, it was good to finally hear the words of "I love you" come out of their mouths. 

Jack and Mila on the other hand - they were completely adorable. I loved how Mila brought out the soft side of Jack and seeing how he took care of her and helped her to see what it means to be human. I kind of want to see more stories about them and their adventures in Whitechapel. 

Another complaint I had about the love stories was how much emphasis they put on the tension between Finley and Jack. In previous books, there was a bit of a triangle between Finley, Jack, and Griffin. As the series went on though, it was shown Finley and Jack were friends and it worked well. However, it felt as though she kept repeating over and over "SEE? THEY'RE HAPPY FOR EACH OTHER AND THEIR NEW ROMANCES! THEY'RE BEST FRIENDS! NO JEALOUSY!" Which my response always was "Right... didn't we cover that in the other stories? Can we move on?"

Overall Thoughts: It was a good conclusion to wrap up the series. I liked seeing where Mila and Jack's relationship went and being able to dive into the Aether. It was a simple plot and things wrapped up a bit too easily. Yet, it still had the fun and adventurous feel I love about The Steampunk Chronicles, I loved having another adventure with these characters, and everyone ended up where I felt like they should. If you have enjoyed this series, I think you'll be happy with the ending. 

You can get your own copy of the book May 27!

Also- have you joined in on my Jamberry Nails party yet? Click this link and be sure to order through my party!

And I'm linking up with Mingle Monday today!


  1. I haven't heard of this series, but I love some good steampunk and historical fiction!

    1. It is so much fun! Not the greatest set of literature ever, but really fun.


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