This book has w-a-y too much going on in it. Like many novels that are set (or partially set) in an "other" world, there are long pages dedicated to explaining the rules (political and physical)and how everything works. I find this kind of stuff tedious, and I think it takes away from character development. The book would benefit from a good editor, who could pare down some sections and beef up others. While the book is long and contains descriptive detail, I feel most of the descriptions are about the physical surroundings. I'm more of a character-driven reader.
That said-I also think there are way too many characters in the The Pocket Watch. I have learned that if a book has to list characters and relationships/hierarchies on the last page, there are probably too many people running around in the story. These characters don't have much complexity or depth. Their world and jobs and relationships are intricate, but I didn't seem to learn much about them or really "bond" with them. We get generic personality descriptions: Ashelia is caring, Emma is bored, Davi is a flirt . . .
I really wanted to know more about Imogen and Lucius, and their friendship/relationship. Maybe there will be more of that in the 2nd book, which I plan to start right away. I'm hoping to see more significant detail regarding the central couple. Yes, they are brave, and loyal- again, I'm looking for more.
I bought these books because no library had them. (They are self published.) I rarely buy books, but the cover synopses really intrigued me. I have not been wowed, but I'll read the next book because I already have it.