It's 1883. Thaniel Steepleton returns home to his tiny London apartment to find a gold pocket watch on his pillow. Six months later the mysterious timepiece saves his life, drawing him away from a blast that destroys Scotland Yard. At last he goes in search of its maker, Keita Mori, a kind, lonely immigrant from Japan. Although Mori seems harmless, a chain of unexplainable events soon suggests he must be hiding something. When Grace Carrow, an Oxford physicist, unwittingly interferes, Thaniel is torn between opposing loyalties.
The Watchmaker of Filigree Street is a sweeping, atmospheric narrative that takes the listener on an unexpected journey through Victorian London, Japan as its civil war crumbles longstanding traditions, and beyond. Blending historical events with dazzling flights of fancy, it opens doors to a strange and magical past.
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- Invested Ivana
Victorian Steampunk Mystery that Wasn't for Me
I never really connected with the characters, but I detested the ones that I liked by the end. I liked Grace enough, but I was put off by some of her behavior toward the end of the book. I did NOT like Mori, though I can't really say way. Thaniel was too wishy-washy for my taste.
Just because The Watchmaker of Filigree Street did not work for me does not mean that I would avoid her writing in the future. This was her first novel, and I'm sure that her future work will only improve.
Thomas Judd did a great job of keeping all of the characters from different cultures distinct. He was able to mimic other accents without making them cartoonish.
The book started off swimmingly, but it started to drag with the flashbacks (which didn't translate to audio very well). I loved the descriptions of all the locations, and Katsu, the clockwork octopus, was adorable.
The Watchmaker of Filigree Street reminded me of The Night Circus, and I think TNC's fans would really enjoy this book.