Release Day Review: The Dragon Men by Steven Harper

, by Kt Clapsadl

The Dragon Men by Steven Harper
The Clockwork Empire #3

As China prepares to become the ultimate power in an era of extraordinary invention and horror, Alice Michaels’ fate lies inside the walls of the forbidden kingdom….

Gavin Ennock has everything a man could desire—except time. As the clockwork plague consumes his body and mind, it drives him increasingly mad and fractures his relationship with his fiancĂ©e, Alice, Lady Michaels. Their only hope is that the Dragon Men of China can cure him.

But a power-mad general has seized the Chinese throne in a determined offensive to conquer Asia, Britain—indeed, the entire world. He has closed the country’s borders to all foreigners. The former ruling dynasty, however, is scheming to return the rightful heir to power. Their designs will draw Gavin and Alice down a treacherous path strewn with intrigue and power struggles. One wrong step will seal Gavin’s fate…and determine the future of the world. 

Now that Gavin has become a clockworker, infected by the only strain of the plague that Alice cannot cure, his time is running out as he slips further and further down the rabbit hole of his destroyed mind. Their only shot lies in making it to China in hopes that their own form of the clockworkers,  Dragon Men hold the cure. But more than just time and distance lies in their way as the emperor of China has shut their borders to keep Alice's cure from taking away their Dragon Men and the technology they create. In an attempt to get across the border, the get sucked into a power struggle that could hold the very fate of the world in its hands and Gavin and Alice are the key to it all.

Everything about this series, and this book specifically was a roller coaster ride. There is such a sense of urgency as Gavin and Alice seem to always be racing against the clock. This makes the action, and really everything about The Dragon Men seems so incredibly intense and kept me sucked right in. Every time I thought things couldn't get more intense they suddenly do, and I'm left staggering. Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of character developments and emotions as well, making this a well rounded book. Although I will say that with the way things ended, I can't imagine where things will be headed, but I am sure they will be one heck of ride once we get there.

Just like the previous installment, The Dragon Men had a recap section at the beginning of the book Granted this is probably mostly intended for new readers to the series so they can jump in anywhere, but even having read the previous books, I love it being there. I realize some may find it unnecessary or repetitive, but I couldn't be more grateful for it. I read a very large number of books each year, and typically I either have to read the last few chapters of the previous installment, or blunder through blindly at the beginning of the new installment until I get my bearings again. It just takes a while to remember who was who and what was what. So, this recap section really made my reading experience a whole lot better since I could dive right in without having to rack my memory.

Considering the fact that the Steampunk genre generally isn't for me, it is rather surprising that this series has been able to steadily capture my interests, including this latest installment. I'm actually really rather happy about this because these books serve as a nice refresher from the usual books I read, and it's always nice to take a little break. So, even if you aren't a fan of the Steampunk genre, I would still highly recommend The Dragon Men as it is perfect for anyone who enjoys an action packed ride in a fascinating and detailed world. I cannot wait to see what Steven Harper has in store next!

(Received a copy from the publisher)

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Previous Books:
  1. The Doomsday Vault
  2. The Impossible Cube


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