For our second book club, I picked up the Clockmaker’s Daughter. Admittedly, this book came into my hands because of Downton Abbey. When I learned that the movie was coming out, I quickly finished the show — which I had stopped watching somewhere between the end of season 4 and the beginning of season 5 out of frustration (just let them be happy!) — so that I would feel up to date when I got around to watching the movie (which I still haven’t done despite having pre-purchased a ticket, I needed an evening in).
While all things come to an end, I knew my relationship with British media didn’t have to be one of them and a quick google search of “books like Downton Abbey” gave me access to several lists that had been curated by Buzzfeed, Amazon, Barnes and Nobel and readers on Goodreads. While there were some commonalities among the lists, I stumbled upon the Clockmaker’s Daughter when sampling books on Audible. It sounded like a dark love story, connecting people through time through archives. I was sold.
Then I started reading. The Clockmaker’s Daughter is well written with interesting themes, for example, the parallels between Birdie and Elodie (loving an artist and being the story they tell of themselves), and found that there was something missing. I think I’m spoiled by books like The Lies of Locke Lamora, which are told non linearly and keep the reader on their toes. I wanted more time spent on Birdie and her life and less on Elodie avoiding preparing for her marriage while trying to solve the mystery of the leather satchel. This is probably confounded by having limited opportunities to learn about the past from the first-person point of view due to the number of characters that tell the story between Birdie’s death and Elodie solving the mystery.
What did you think of the book? Leave a comment with your thoughts and I’ll write back to you.
As we move into cooler temperatures and summer nights fade into memories, I thought it would be fun to remember time spent at the beach and to read a book highly recommended by a poet in my life. December’s book club will be The Whale Runner (description below).
Eight-year-old Kahu, a member of the Maori tribe of Whangara, New Zealand, fights to prove her love, her leadership, and her destiny. Her people claim descent from Kahutia Te Rangi, the legendary “whale rider.” In every generation since Kahutia, a male heir has inherited the title of chief. But now there is no male heir, and the aging chief is desperate to find a successor. Kahu is his only great-grandchild–and Maori tradition has no use for a girl. But when hundreds of whales beach themselves and threaten the future of the Maori tribe, it is Kahu who saves the tribe when she reveals that she has the whale rider’s ancient gift of communicating with whales.