Mechanica by Betsy Cornwell 

This has to be one of my favourite book that I read here in 2016. I was absolutely pulled in to this novel. It has some of the most amazing potential to be even better! Mechanica by Betsy Cornwell is part of my Top 10 Books of 2016! I recommend that you open your mind a bit before reading this particular novel. Because it is a very different retelling of the fairytale Cinderella.

***And before you get all in a puff and start emailing me, telling me that I’ve made a mistake and this book is actually Cinder by Marissa Meyer. PLEASE STOP! I am aware that they may sound the same (personally I don’t think that they do at all) Mechanica is its own retelling of the famous fairytale; one that I personally prefer over Marissa Meyer’s.

Mechanica is written by Betsy Cornwell it has a total of 304 pages and I rated it 5/5 cups of tea. 

Excerpt from the book cover is as following: Nicolette’s awful stepsisters call her “Mechanica” to demean her, but the nickname fits: she learned to be an inventor at her mother’s knee. Her mom is gone now, though, and the Steps have turned her into a servant in her own home. But on her sixteenth birthday, Nicolette discovers a secret workshop in the cellar and begins to dare to imagine a new life for herself. Could the mysterious books and tools hidden there—and the mechanical menagerie, led by a tiny metal horse named Jules—be the key to escaping her dreary existence? With a technological exposition and royal ball on the horizon, the timing might just be perfect for Nicolette to earn her freedom at last.

What I liked? 

  • Nicolette was a strong female character – it was very different from the normal telling of Cinderella which was completely fine with me, since it gave a interesting story to the characters.
  • This story gives a gorgeous depiction of friendship – if you take nothing else it should be the underlining fight for friendship that was laid out in this story.
  • Wonderful potential to carry on and continue to get better and better.
  • I’ve always loved the fairytale Cinderella, and this retelling has got an amazingly beautiful message behind its retelling.
  • One of my favourite parts of the story was the different “pieces” that Nicolette invented and how they played a part in the story. A way which I found very magical.

What I disliked? 

  • I HATE that people keep thinking that this is a “Cinder” rip off which I really think is unlikely – many many amazing authors have multiple cross overs that happen with from original stories. I will say that “Mechanica” is steampunk and fey whereas “Cinder” is about a cyborg Cinderella. They BOTH have strong female characters.

***Just one piece of advance – this is NOT a traditional telling of Cinderella. This telling really needs an open mind, because its so unique from what the original fairytale.

Overall this is one of my favourite books that I read in 2016. I ate it up in just a couple days, I really enjoyed the magical “dream state” that was brought on by the story telling. Many of the reviews I read before going into this book said that they found it boing or that the pacing didn’t fit them. Both of these things made me unsure about reading it but I did not find them to be true in the slightest. I was amazed that I kept coming back to the story well after I finished the last pages. I thought that the overall prevailing themes were strong – there is lots of potential for this story to continue building and I am extremely excited to read the second book “Venturess” in 2017. Comment or like if you liked the book and/or my review. See you all soon and Happy Reading 📚! – Tegan


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