Clockwork Angels is a dystopian novel, set in a future where everything is supposed to be perfect due to the perfection the world's ruler, the Watchmaker insists on. Although almost everyone is happy with their boring lives, a young boy by the name of Owen Hardy is unsatisfied and wants to explore the wonders of the world. One night, he sets out and begins to explore the world. He stumbles onto a carnival, pirates, the seven cities of gold, poor and rich cities, among other things. Along the way, he meets a man that is determined to ruin everything the Watchmaker has done. He goes by "The Anarchist." Both the Anarchist and the Watchmaker want to use Owen for different reasons, and he has to decide between them, but ultimately doesn't like either path, making him question his life even more.
My favorite character has to be the Anarchist. The world is too perfect, and needs a little chaos and disruption now and again. He has good intentions, but the way he goes about them is wrong and results in death and property defacing. I'm drawn to him because the Watchmaker is too perfect, and a life without risk is a life without life. That's said by the Anarchist himself.
I liked the rapidly changing setting, because it always put Owen in tough and different situations. The book is really showing someone's journey to find themselves in a world where they're told what they are without their own exploration. The settings were well described and very different from modern life, always making it interesting.
If I could change anything, it might be less inner thought and more action. At some points, the book felt slow, and I couldn't read it in one sitting. It drew me in but not enough to make me extensively invested in it. It was very thought provoking though, which changed things up for me.
I'd give this book 5 stars. Not only because I liked it, but it really enhanced my view on the Clockwork Angels album. I now realize what the songs are about with more depth, and I appreciate them much more when I listen to them. There are a lot of corny RUSH references, such as Presto, Big Money, and Time Stand Still just to name a few, but they didn't take away anything from the story.
Spencer Brokaw published his first book The Impenetrable Spy in 2011 at age 12. He enjoys writing and plans on creating a series. He resides in Ohio and enjoys swimming, golfing, playing the drums, and reading.