Monday, December 10, 2012

Clockwork Angels: Book Review

   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.


  1. I've been aware of the latest Rush album and knew there was a novel to go with it, but didn't know much about it. Your review has made me genuinely interested in checking both the book and the album out. You ought to get a cut of their profits. I believe the author of Clockwork Angels, Kevin J. Anderson, wrote some X-Files sci-fi novels that I enjoyed back in the 1990s.

  2. It's a stellar album and seeing and hearing the songs in concert was amazing. The book really showed how the mind matures itself and yeah, it was just a good, thought provoking read. Kevin has written tons of novels, from Star Wars to originals to the X-Files. And thanks, I enjoyed writing the review and it's actually the longest I've ever written.