Check this review out at our blog!
Warning. This is the 3rd book in the series, so it is highly recommended to read the first two. It can be read by itself, but to fully understand everything the first two must be read.
All in all this installment in the Steampunk Chronicles was great, but not an amazing but not an oh-my-god-I'm screaming-my-head-off 5 star read. So a few months have passed since the last book, and not everything is the same. Griffin is having problems with the Aether and refuses to tell anyone, making all of his friends worried sick. Meanwhile, Sam and Emily are doing great as they both pretty much know how the other feels, except right when they were actually going to confess to each other Emily is abducted by the Machinist who isn't dead (kind of). Then begins the main part of the story of the hunt for Emily and her time as a captive (Jack Dandy becomes involved at this point).
In The Girl with the Iron Touch, there is definitely more of a focus on the romance. Sam and Emily are officially together, but Finley and Griffin are a bit more complicated. However, they do get together by the end of the book and the semi-love triangle between Finley, Griffin, and Jack is resolved, but not in the best way. With all of the loose ends, there is so much more room for the story to continue. I have heard rumors that this is the last book in the series, but I don't believe it. The Girl with the Iron Touch ends with too many unresolved questions that there has to be a following book.
One of my favorite aspects of this read is that the focus is on Emily this time. The first one was about Finley, the second starred Jasper, and now this one focuses on Emily. I really think that the changing focus on all of the different characters gives the reader a deeper understanding and involvement with that character. It's great for character development. Maybe the next one (which there has to be) could be Sam's back story?
Another one of my favorite parts of this series is the whole technology in Victorian times aspect. I have to say, the Steampunk Chronicles are one of the best series in the steampunk category with a great balance of romance, action, mystery, and gadgets. I find how Cross adds a twist to modern inventions and makes them fit in with the story fascinating.
All in all, The Girl with the Iron Touch is a good continuation of the series with a deeper inside into some of the characters and the haunting possibility of the resurrection of the Machinist, everyone's worst nightmare. Romantic entanglements also come to play when everything is threatened by the Machinist and his robotic creations. It wasn't 5 stars, but it is still a must read for the series.
- ~M @ YA Novelties