A Clockwork Heart by Liesel Schwarz

The Chronicles of Light and Shadow, Book 2

Synopsis: FOR BETTER OR CURSE. That might as well have been the wedding vow of Elle Chance and her new husband, the ex-Warlock Hugh Marsh in the second book of this edgy new series that transforms elements of urban fantasy, historical adventure, and paranormal romance into storytelling magic.

As Elle devotes herself to her duties as the Oracle—who alone has the power to keep the dark designs of Shadow at bay—Marsh finds himself missing the excitement of his former life as a Warlock. So when Commissioner Willoughby of the London Metropolitan police seeks his help in solving a magical mystery, Marsh is only too happy to oblige. But in doing so, Marsh loses his heart . . . literally.

In place of the flesh-and-blood organ is a clockwork device—a device that makes Marsh a kind of zombie. Nor is he the only one. A plague of clockwork zombies is afflicting London, sowing panic and whispers of revolution. Now Elle must join forces with her husband’s old friend, the Nightwalker Loisa Beladodia, to track down Marsh’s heart and restore it to his chest before time runs out.

Review: I liked the first volume of this steampunk series and I was curious to see what would happen with the second one. It must be said that Elle has now accepted her destiny, but it is so far from what she wanted … However, she continues her life alongside her husband Marsh. But this life is not what she dreamed of and the obligations make her want to fly and control her vessels to get away from it all. Yet she is not the only one who made sacrifices and our young heroine does not seem to realize that her husband has done a lot more than she seems to see. He gave up everything for her and he now finds himself married to a woman who never stays with him, and with a life routine eventually settled. But everything will change when to assist the police he finds himself trapped by a strange creature and turned into a kind of zombie. Although Elle is determined to fix things, to find and save him, but can she really do that?

I had a little hard to get into the story at the beginning of the novel, but I confess that after the first part I was really curious to see what would happen. I must say that I was very intrigued by this new evil called La Dame Blanche and I really wanted to see how far she was willing to go. It was also very sad to see our two main characters with such feelings, trying to understand each other in vain and yet loving the other unconditionally. We can understand the behavior of our heroine but it is true that our heart aches for her husband. She did not realize what she is doing and only thinks of her own person. Of course, she will evolve in the novel, understanding the mistakes she made in the hope that it is not too late for her to try to fix it.

There are also all the characters that we had the pleasure to discover in the previous volume, as her father, the Professor; Loisa, our beloved vampire; Adele our little fairy and Patrice … but many others as well. I confess that I am very curious to find out more about Old Jack because it is a new character more than intriguing. But I am convinced that after such a novel we’ll have the opportunity to meet him soon. The end of the book totally surprised me, I did not expect such a direction and I admit that I was really sad to see how it all would end. I am especially curious to see how everything is going to be resolved now. It was an enjoyable read and I will wait to read the next Elle’s adventures to see how she will solve her many problems and threats looming in the dark.



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