Review : The Girl in the Steel Corset, Kady Cross

The Girl in the Steel Corset by Kady Cross (The Steampunk Chronicles #1)

May 24th, 2011 (US)
Harlequin Teen


In 1897 England, sixteen-year-old Finley Jayne has no one…except the “thing” inside her.

When a young lord tries to take advantage of Finley, she fights back. And wins. But no normal Victorian girl has a darker side that makes her capable of knocking out a full-grown man with one punch….

Only Griffin King sees the magical darkness inside her that says she’s special, says she’s one of them. The orphaned duke takes her in from the gaslit streets against the wishes of his band of misfits: Emily, who has her own special abilities and an unrequited love for Sam, who is part robot; and Jasper, an American cowboy with a shadowy secret.

Griffin’s investigating a criminal called The Machinist, the mastermind behind several recent crimes by automatons. Finley thinks she can help—and finally be a part of something, finally fit in.

But The Machinist wants to tear Griff’s little company of strays apart, and it isn’t long before trust is tested on all sides. At least Finley knows whose side she’s on—even if it seems no one believes her.

My review

It’s an interesting steampunk novel for teens. I’m not a specialist of this new kind of stories but I like this mix between historical details, machines invented and paranormal aspects.

Finley is a strange girl. She’s smart and brave but she has a little more inside her, a dangerous and strong thing, like a beast, which can be a threat for her and her neighborhood. When she escapes after fighting with her violent master, she hits Griffin, a rich aristocracy heir which has also some powerful weapons. Griffin tries to help Finley to know what happened to her and and help her to control it while they attracted to each other.

The story focused around 4 people : 3 friends, Griffin, Sam and Emily, and the newcomer Finley. They live in a world filled with robots, Organites and a mysterious machine, the Aether… They fight the Machinist, a thief who seems to know what they are able to do and is building a dangerous plan to control England!

There is a love triangle between Finley and the two other sides of her personality : Griffin, the white knight and Jack Dandy, the bad boy who is very interesting.

The story is complex with many supernatural things mixed with a historic plot, at the same time fantasy and thriller novel. It’s original and entertaining even if it’s sometimes not easy to follow.

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