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The Clockwork Three

3.98 of 5 stars 3.98  ·  rating details  ·  5,026 ratings  ·  888 reviews
An enchanted green violin, an automaton that comes to life, and a hidden treasure . . . THE CLOCKWORK THREE is a richly woven adventure story that is sure to become a classic!

Giuseppe is an orphaned street musician from Italy, who was sold by his uncle to work as a slave for an evil padrone in the U.S. But when a mysterious green violin enters his life he begins to imagine
Paperback, 400 pages
Published October 1st 2011 by Scholastic Paperbacks (first published October 1st 2010)
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Nelithma Wasage Yeah. Some books are re-printed with different covers. Maybe that version of the book is the original, and we might have other editions of the book.
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I’m in a weird position. I’m tired of Steampunk, and yet if I say that word to most kids that walk into my library they’ll give me a blank stare followed by an immediate, “What’s Steampunk?” I’d explain to them that it’s this strange amalgamation of historical fiction plus futuristic gear-based clockwork technology but I know that this would not cause the blank stares to cease. They'd simply grow blanker. I’m tired of Steampunk, you see, but even then I have a confession to make. I’m only really ...more
ATOS Book Level: 4.5
Interest Level: Middle Grades (MG 4-8)
AR Points: 15.0
Lexile: 680
Word Count: 100530
The cover flap describes this story as "a dose of fantasy, (and) a hint of magic". My problem with the book, for me, is that it would work better if this was a fantasy. In fantasy there is a suspension of beliefs, a stepping away from what "you know to be true" with/in this world. Giuseppe's fiddle playing has a "hint of magic", why not give it some real magic, or at least let us set aside our p
Every boy or girl, no matter how old, should read this book. I'll try to tell you why.

I believe at some time every child, no matter who or where they are, feels at least once and maybe several times like a slave of sorts, even in the best of times and in the most favorable of conditions. I know I did, and most of the people I've talked to enough about it to know, did also. Even though I was raised in pleasant circumstances with everything I needed, I did. Nonetheless, I had red hair and freckles
The Rusty Key
Reviewed by Rusty Key Writer: Jordan B. Nielsen

Recommended for: Your guess is as good as mine. It’s far too immature and sentimental for teens, but it’s so dense, and the plot so meandering I can’t imagine younger children staying engaged with it. Let’s say ages 11 to 13.

One Word Summary: Mawkish

I hardly know where to begin. How about with a compliment? Matthew Kirby is a solid constructor of prose, and a very skilled selector of words. His descriptive abilities (though overused…editors, I’m gl
This middle-grade read was given to me by my mom as a senior in college gift. The writing is geared towards middle grade, so no lavish descriptions or large words, but it is just as lyrical as some young adult books. Throughout this book, I was reminded of The Thief Lord with the whimsical characters and action.

This book is more of a suspense book. Nothing huge, but each chapter alternates between the three main characters and the chapters more often than not end in cliffhangers. I had to resist
Kayla West
First of all, let me say that this book should have a subtitle: THE GREEN VIOLIN, for it is this very object which brings the three main characters together in the first place. Without that, and some genius musical talent behind it, this story would not need to be told, let alone would it even exist.
Each character introduced to us in this story, Giuseppe, Hannah, and Frederick, has some sort of background or past haunting them. One was taken from his homeland by his menacing padrone to play for
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Kira M for

Desperate to escape from his cruel master and make his way back to his home in Italy, Giuseppe is excited to find a green violin that is like new. Playing it every day in the streets, he is able to make large amounts of money for his escape. Storing it in a crypt of a man by the name of Stroop, he dreams of the day he will be able to buy his passage home. However, his cruel master, Stephano, grows suspicious of Giuseppe and begins watching him like a hawk.

Why I read this: Steampunk, and a debut author? - I couldn't resist!

Plot: This book follows three young people in 19th century America. The first is a street performer named Giuseppe who dreams of returning to Italy, back to his family. Hannah is a maid trying to help her family while her father hopefully recovers from his illness. The last is Frederick, the apprentice of a clockmaker who is trying to complete his own automaton. All of their lives become intertwined and they end up relying on on
Bunga Mawar
Dibuka plastiknya kemarin pagi di Stasiun Tebet, dibaca di KRL dalam perjalanan ke Depok Baru. Dilanjut dibaca malamnya dlm KRL kembali ke.Stasiun Tebet, dilanjutkan baca di rumah sampai ngantuk, dan selesai pagi ini.

Nah, ini cuma pengalaman membaca. Jangan ada yang mengira sebagai review ya *kegeeran

Makasih kirimannya, Bu Dokter Ratu Mia :-)
*ga berani lirik ke bibi Ika alias Buzenk, karena saya belum kirim pesanan beliau
Slowest moving book EVER. While this might have been a great book I was very very disappointed in it. I believe this has to do with the fact that the book cover mentions magic and there really isn't much mention of it. Yeah there is a little bit and it's referenced but this book was just overall misleading, infodump heavy and really not what I thought it would be at all.

I do have to say I cannot stand books where all the adults are just incompotent and stupid. I felt there really wasn't one adu
Barb Middleton
Reading books can be like "chasing butterflies over hills." So often, I want to capture the beautiful turn of phrases or word combinations like I borrowed the author's "butterfly" simile from this book. For a "steam-driven" person that moves fast, cooks fast, and reads fast, I'm amazed when a writer can slow me down from a boiling to simmering temperature. Believe me, it rarely happens. This book did just that. I was caught up in the beautiful descriptions, setting, characters, and similes. What ...more
Rhys M
My first impressions of the book were a bit negative. I, being judgmental whenever it came to books, thought that the book would be something I would have to slave though. Looking at the cover, I also questioned the positive ratings the book had gotten initially. However, I began reading the book and frankly, in the beginning, it seemed pretty random and far off. Three children, different in every which way, different areas of the city, different personalities, different. One trait they all shar ...more
Kat Heckenbach
I have to start by mentioning the cover because it is gorgeous, and probably 90% of why I picked this book in the first place. However, while there IS a clockwork man in the story, he's definitely not central to it. The title and cover, imho, are a little misleading.

The story is about three children: two boys, who both happen to be orphans, and a girl who has had to become the breadwinner for her family because her father is so ill. Giuseppe is a busker--a street musician who works for a horrib
Mrs. Riding
The Clockwork Three is an incredible story of three young people with the great desire to be free. Giuseppe is a orphan street musician with a master who demands much and gives so little. Longing for his home in Italy, Giuseppe uses his passion to fuel his music. Hannah is a maid of a grand hotel and the sole provider for her family. Wanting to have what is needed for her family, she goes in search for a hidden treasure. Frederick, an apprentice clockmaker, works every moment on a special projec ...more
The Clockwork Three is a suspense filled, view-changing tale of a boy named Guiseppe. He is a violinist and is under the control of his padrone named Stephano. Then one day he finds a magical green violin, and it earns him much more money than usual. He decides to earn his way out of he city and go home to Italy. The other two characters Hannah and Frederick also have many questions throughout their life, and as friends they all realize that one friend of theirs has the answer to their question ...more
I loved this book! It has actually not been released yet, but because the author is in my ward, I was lucky enough to be able to read the uncorrected proof. This is Matthew's debut novel and I thought it was the perfect blend of fantasy (just a hint), and courage and trust in kids who, unfortunately, are in the midst of experiencing difficult childhoods. There was also some great history included that I previously knew nothing about. I loved that the story was uplifting with the main characters ...more
This was written by a new local author, and it is his first book. I was lucky enough to get a pre-copy and I highly recommend it. It is a great story of 3 children who come together and end up forming a friendship that would normally be unlikely. One of the things I liked about it was the story instantly took you away and you were lost in their lives and adventures. I also loved that with it being a YA book that the author didn't let the characters get away with anything morally wrong. What a gr ...more
L.J. Garcia
At no point did I find myself woolgathering by reading-but-not-actually-paying-attention to this book, the story had me hooked, and putting it down was a battle with myself. The Clockwork Three is a very original work with almost no “copycat” features. There is of course, an uber object, in this case it is the green violin Giuseppe finds on the docks. This is a very old plot developer, but without it the story would not be the same. There is also a nasty padrone named Stephano (master of Giusep ...more
The clockwork three is an interesting and great book.Towards the end, there is a lot of action.The Clockwork Three is about a Boy named Giuseppe, a boy named Fredrick and a girl named Hannah. Giuseppe was captured from his home and sent to live with a man named Stephano who makes him earn money for his master playing violin every day. If he does not come home with enough money each day he will either have to spend the night in the rat cellar or skip dinner which he doesn't get enough of anyway. ...more
I picked this up at a warehouse sale from Scholastic for my children. I was quite intrigued with the story. This debut novel did well at weaving these three children & their stories together. I didn't feel like I was reading something far beneath my "reading level".
Inasni Dyah R.
Aku barusan nyelesaiin novel ini. Sejak 22 April, seusai baca The Death Cure, dan langsung kulanjut ke sini. Aku inget sempat berhenti sekitar sehari-dua hari karena males, nggak mood baca, dan bikin targetku nyelesaiin novel ini dalam tiga hari nggak kesampaian. Sekarang udah 27 April, dan aku tetep bersyukur bisa nyelesaiinnya.

Sejak awal lihat novel ini di toko buku, aku tahu aku bakal suka banget sama ceritanya. Ada sesuatu di dalamnya yang menarik aku, yang bikin aku pengin—sampe butuh—beli
Amber Sumner
I actually really, really liked this book! It is the author's breakout novel, and for his first work it's pretty darn good. I am a fan of the steampunk style, and this novel definitely has some steampunk roots. Clockwork, a fancy opera, a medium, a lost treasure, a magic violin... it's all there! This novel definitely made me want to keep reading, and I zipped through it really fast (even for me!). I absolutely loved watching the three points of view slowly converge as the characters' worlds beg ...more
Stuff I Read - The Clockwork Three by Matthew J. Kirby Review

I'm always on the look out for quality steampunk, so I was quite excited to find that this book does a great job building a story and character steeped in a rich steam-powered setting, with something of a mystery to solve and all sorts of hardships to contend with. The three characters are indomitable and damaged and proud, and make compelling protagonists. Their struggles are not to thwart some plot against the world but rather to sta
The only thing I really liked about this book was the characters. The story to me felt a little to disjointed and it took for ever to pull me in and when it finally did start pulling me in it didn't last very long or really build up to that much.
Apparently this book is from the genre steampunk. I'd heard of the genre and liked the idea behind it of science fiction with steam-powered machinery set in the Victorian era. However, I didn't feel like this book really conveyed that. And I don't reall
Hannah Katrina
About: Frederick, a clockmaker's apprentice; Hannah, a young girl working as a hotel maid; and Giuseppe, an orphan boy with an exceptional gift. Although seemingly different from one another, their stories are intertwined--like the turning gears of a clock.

Pros: 1) The plot. It was really spellbinding. Those with interlocking stories are, for me, just brilliant, and this book didn't fail me. 2) The writer's style. The book was written in a way that "shows, not tells" (as my Language Arts teache
Full Review @:

Though the book does a fantastic job of blending steampunk, history, mystery, and a bit of fantasy, the strength of this book definitely lies in its characters. Giuseppe, Hannah, and Frederick are each in their own way deserving of your love and sympathy. Young readers will have no problem finding a friend within the pages to identify with and relate to, especially since each of these three young heroes play an equally important role towards
Sarah BT
About the Book: Frederick is an apprentice in a clockwork shop who is secretly working on his own clockwork man in the hopes of making journeyman.

Hannah is a maid working at a hotel trying to raise money for her family and sick father. When she hears of the possibility of a treasure, Hannah decides to seek her fortune.

Giuseppe was kidnapped from his home in Italy and works as a street musician. He dreams of returning home and when he finds a green violin, he wonders if it holds to key to his pa
This book follows Giuseppe, a street musician, who is "employed" by his padrone and must bring in enough money through his playing each day, or else.. Frederick a talented apprentice clockmaker rescued from the brutal orphanage/fabric mill, and Hannah who has an invalid father and is working as a maid in a hotel to support her family. Each dreams of a better life. As the book continues their stories intertwine.

I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this book. I was hooked after the first chapter
This is an amazing story which includes adventure/ intrigue/ mystery/ fantasy/history. The setting is a coastal town in early America where immigrants and goods flow back and forth. The first 3 chapters introduce the reader to the main characters individually: Giuseppe (sold by his uncle to an evil padrone, Stephano, who took him to America and used him to make money by playing his violin on the street corners), Frederick (placed in an orphanage by his terminally ill mother at age 5 and now appr ...more

I was pleasantly surprise to find how much I enjoyed this book. The story of three children who face hardships that no child should have to endure was, at times, heart breaking, and this was espeically true of Giuseppe's struggle. I don't want to give too much away so make sure you read the synopsis because it provides a great summary.

Each child's POV is presented in alternating chapters, which was a great way to read the story to see how the character's
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Matthew Kirby was born in Utah, and grew up in Maryland, California, and Hawaii. As an undergraduate he majored in history, and then went on to pursue an M.S. in school psychology. For ten months out of the year he works with students, and during the rest of the year he writes. He and his wife currently live in northern Utah.

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“He waved to the city and said good-bye.
The city responded by carrying on the way it always did, traffic moving forward uninterrupted, without slowing, as if it were trying to demonstrate its permanence and show him it would still be there if he ever wanted to return. That promise was the best and only thing he could ask of it.”
“Giuseppe would miss them as well, but in a different way than he would miss the city. A city would stay the same. The same buildings. The same streets. Not forever, but for a great long while. But Frederick and Hannah would never again be the people they were right now, standing on the dock, wishing him farewell. Tomorrow they would wake up and be a little bit different and a little bit different the day after that, and in no time they might become people he did not recognize. Giuseppe knew it because they were already different from when he had first met them. He knew it because he was different from when they had first met him.” 16 likes
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