The Clakker: a mechanical man endowed with great strength and boundless stamina - but beholden to the wishes of its human masters.
Soon after the Dutch scientist and clockmaker Christiaan Huygens invented the very first Clakker in the seventeenth century, the Netherlands built a whole mechanical army. It wasn't long before a legion of clockwork fusiliers marched on Westminster, and the Netherlands became the world's sole superpower.
Three centuries later it still is. Only the French still fiercely defend their belief in universal human rights for all men - flesh and brass alike. After decades of warfare, the Dutch and French have reached a tenuous cease-fire in a conflict that has ravaged North America.
But one audacious Clakker, Jax, can no longer bear the bonds of his slavery. He will make a bid for freedom, and the consequences of his escape will shake the very foundations of the Brasswork Throne.
©2015 Ian Tregillis (P)2014 Hachette Audio
Photographer, nature & water geek, music lover, book fiend.
I really enjoyed the series started with Bitter Seeds & was drawn to the first book by it's cover. I know the old adage, but has anyone else noticed that you can usually get a sense of a book's content just by its cover anymore? I bring up the cover thing because Bitter Seeds had an excellent cover & then it sounded like the publisher wanted a more "action movie" type of cover for the following two books. Go take a look, and you'll see.
Anyway, this series might not be wholly original, but it kept my attention and the main characters weren't one dimensional- they have flaws as well as virtues, & I thoroughly enjoyed this listen. Chris Kayser did an excellent job, especially considering that he had to lend true emotion to "mechanicals" without making them human; no easy task.
Anyway, I'm a fan & if you enjoy fantasy, science fiction, stories of royal life, war fiction, or just good character driven suspense of any genre, this is worth your time.
Finally something new and engaging in a genre that has become fixated on the science at the expense of the fiction. Without burdening the reader with gibberish technological details, the author has a spun wonderful story that melds fantasy and sci-fi and alternate history in a way that seems at once to be both realistic and fanciful. Kudos go to the narrator as well. Performing a piece that combines many nuanced characters in conjunction with robotic voices is no small task but he pulls it off masterfully. Big thumbs up!
Non stop action. Brutal agony all around. Tregillis must live in a world of nastiness steeped in pain. This certainly emphasized the alter reality of the novel. Kaysers narration of the mechanical and his on purpose mispronunciations also used to great effect.
Interesting worldbuilding, interesting characters. It is also one long tale of urelenting misery being inflicted on those characters with no letup or breathing space worth mentioning listened to this in chunks over weeks because it just got depressing
Struggled to get through it, I kept hoping it would get better. The themes were repetitive and the characters one-dimensional. Also I have an issue because the alternate world history didn't seem to hang together.
This book is pretty good, kept me interested for most of it. however, it is definitely the first book in a series, so it ends a bit abruptly.
I found myself repeatedly wondering why Jax didn't use his freedom maker more often. We discover early on that it can free others, so why not use it on anyone who discovers that he's a rogue? Most frustrating part of the book.
I was not sure what to expect because I dont normally seek books that are associated with fantasy or magic.
Mind changed. Great stuff.
Wonderful voice work of male, female and mechanical characters. The one exception was the baker! Is that your droopy the dog voice or is your mouth full of marbles?
A Sci Fi junkie who occasionally goes slumming to read other literature.
Alternate history sci fi novel. Mechanicals (Clakkers, Servitors) were invented by a Dutch inventor and made the Netherlands a superpower. Members of The Guild called Horologists fix and maintain the clakkers and protect the secret of their inner workings. Clakkers are smarter and stronger and are controlled by a pre-programmed hierarchy called the gesha. There is a way for them to gain free will and be free of the gesha, and the novel tells the story of Jax, how he obtained free will, was considered a rogue, and ran for his life.
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