I don’t think I’ve ever read another book to which the term “meh” could more appropriately be applied.
“The Watchmaker’s Daughter” by C. J. Archer follows the story of India Steele, a watchmaker’s daughter whose father recently died, leaving the whole of her inheritance to her now ex-fiance. In the process of confronting her ex, she happens to meet one Matthew Glass: a suspected American outlaw with a secret and a magic watch that seems to rejuvenate him upon command. Now having caught a glimpse of a magical world she never knew existed, India must navigate the social and political complexities of this new found world in order to harness her own powers and aid Matthew in his quest to find the original manufacturer of his watch.
Overall, this book is not bad, but it did not capture my attention in the way I’d hoped it would. The characters are interesting, but there always seems to be a sense that you’re just inches away from some kind of action that just never seems to materialize. The idea behind this book is good, but I ultimately felt as if it could have been condensed into just a few chapters and inserted at the start of the second novel as opposed to working as a stand-alone book itself. That being said, after finishing the first book, I would be willing to give the second book a try, just to see where this story is going, so take from that what you will!
In the end, I think this book may have just found the wrong audience in me. While I was expecting an action packed world of magic and intrigue, I feel as if Archer focuses more-so on the social complexities and the burgeoning relationship between Matthew and India. Fans of Jane Austen or Deborah Harkness’ “Discovery of Witches” will likely get much more out of these books than I did.