Hello hello and welcome or welcome back to my little bookish corner of the internet. Today I’m helping kick off the blog tour for Anna Mazzola’s latest book, The Clockwork Girl. A big thank you to Orion Publishing for my copy of this beautiful book, and for involving me in the tour.
A intoxicating and darkly immersive story of obsession, illusion and the price of freedom, from the award-winning author of The Unseeing
Paris, 1750. In the midst of winter, as birds fall frozen from the sky, a new maid arrives at the home of a celebrated clockmaker and his clever, unworldly daughter. But rumours are stirring that Reinhart’s uncanny mechanical creations – bejewelled birds, silver spiders – are more than mere automata. That they might defy the laws of nature, perhaps even at the expense of the living…
But Madeleine is hiding a dark past, and a dangerous purpose – to discover the truth of the clockmaker’s experiments and record his every move, in exchange for her own chance of freedom.
Meanwhile, in the streets, children are quietly disappearing – and Madeleine comes to fear that she has stumbled upon a greater conspiracy. One which might reach to the heart of Versailles…
Throughout the pages of this entrancing book, we see the world through the eyes of different women, suffering in their own ways. Beaten down by the world around them, where a woman must be only an item to admire the view of and not a person at all, they face their own battles, that are so different from one another and yet have so many of the same themes.
At times, The Clockwork Girl talks frankly and the bleak realities, both of history and of the history of being a woman, yet Anna Mazzola manages to capture these hard -hitting facts in a fashion that is so beautiful, it almost feels like poetry. She makes it possible to see the beauty in the tragedy that is 1750s Paris. The pain is so raw it leaks off the page, and I’m not exaggerting to say I found myself more than a bit emotional throughout.
Gothic fiction has been having a revival over recent years, and Mazzola is a wonderous addition to the the names that have been gracing the shelves. With vivid demonstrations between the very upper class, and the rest of the world crumbling around them, so starkly at constast from one another, we see children dying in the streets while solid gold automotons with ruby eyes are constucted just meters away. It’s a painful, difficult book, but also brilliant and important to be read.
Thanks so much for stopping by today for the start of this exciting tour. The Clockwork Girl is a real one to watch; so is Anna Mazzola.