by Peter Bunzl
368 pages; ages 12 & up
Jolly Fish Press, 2019 (US edition)
Action! Adventure! Danger and Daring! What a great kick-off for the new series of Cogheart Adventures .
Thirteen-year-old Lily Harman is stuck at Miss Octavia Scrimshaw’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies. She would rather be anywhere else, especially if it involved adventures and piracy, like the stories she reads in her penny dreadfuls – the Victorian equivalent of comic books. Instead, she’s condemned to classes on deportment and posture and the Art of Making Polite Conversation (in French, no less).
Then her father, a famous inventor, disappears on what should have been a routine zeppelin flight. Suddenly Lily’s life is turned upside down. Her father’s housekeeper Madame Verdegris, becomes her legal guardian and brings her back home. Lily is happy to be away from the pretentious school. She is happy to be reunited with Mrs. Rust, a mechanical servant who cooked so many of Lily’s meals.
But something strange is going on. Madame Verdegris is selling some of her father’s mechanicals off for salvage, and strange men metal-eyed men lurk in the shadows. Then there’s the clockmaker’s son, Robert, who has rescued Lily’s mechanical pet fox, Malkin. Why were metal-eyed men chasing – and shooting – at her fox?
I love the wild adventure that takes Lily and Robert across the rooftops of town. I love the mechanicals – and how each has its own winder. They are as precise as clockwork. I love Mrs. Rust’s wonderful lexicon of alliterative idioms. “Cogs and chronometers!” she exclaims. “Smokestacks and sprockets!”
And I love how the secret of the Cogheart is revealed. I’d say more, but there are metal-eyed men lurking in the shadows, so I must be off. I look forward to more exciting adventures in this series.
Always in the Middle , so hop over to see what other people are reading. And drop by one of his earlier posts where he reviews Cogheart. Review from Advanced Reader Copy provided by Blue Slip media.