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(Clockwork Twist #1)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  148 Ratings  ·  43 Reviews
Twist has never left London, until today. Now he's traveling on an airship--with a crew that insists they're not pirates--on his way to find the clockwork princess because he's the only one who can fix her.

In true Neo-Victorian style, Clockwork Twist is set in a lush and vibrant world where things are as you might expect in 1878. That is, of course, if fantastic creatures
Paperback, 295 pages
Published March 22nd 2013 by CreateSpace
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Douglas Stewart
"Only the broken heart of Clockwork Royalty can mend Twist, a man seemingly able to repair anything except himself"

Read if you:

Love a protagonist as tightly wound and complicated as the pocketwatch he bares
Relish characters that are so colorful intricate they render persian antiques speechless
Enjoy swashbuckling adventures, both above the clouds and below the sea
Wonder sometimes if it would better to see the future or know the truth

Avoid if you:

Prefer dark alleys and malicious intrigue to carniv
Elizabeth Watasin
Aug 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: steampunk
Twist: Best kind of Escapist Fantasy. Is it wrong to say 'escapist'? Considering that's what book reading is, I think Emily Thompson's Clockwork Twist: Waking completely fulfills that goal. I haven't read fantasy since I was a wee human, but having recently broken my foot, escaping into the world of Twist was an ideal remedy and wonderful return to fantasy adventure.

'Steampunk' in all the right places with airships, steam technology, some old world attitudes, and of course, clockwork technology.
Jun 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Clockwork Twist is in my mind what steampunk is all about. It is a fantastical adventure with airships, submarines, pirates, slavery, poverty and wealth, as well as characters I will remember with joy for quite some time. The synopsis / description provides a good overview of the storyline and I cannot improve on it and will not even try. I will say that the writing was excellent and clean with wonderful world building that allowed my imagination to see into Twist's world and feel like I was alo ...more
Bethany  T
Oct 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This was the first steampunk novel I ever read. It won’t be my last. I’m definitely up for exploring this genre again, and hopefully with this author.

The story centers around Twist, a small, timid clock shop keeper with a Sight that forces him to see the damage in anything he touches, be it a clock or a human. Works well working on clocks, not so well for getting on with other people. But events are set in motion and another person with her own Sight walks into Twist’s shop offer him a chance t
Oct 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Deborah by: Emily Thompson
Shelves: own
Waking was an entertaining introduction to what promises to be an intriguing steampunk world. Were I reviewing only the first half of the book, I would have given it 4.5 stars; the characters were interesting, and the pace was fast. Unfortunately, the second half seemed to bog down; the newly-introduced characters felt two-dimensional, and I frequently wanted to skip ahead to get back to Twist and Myra, the Clockwork Princess.

I was particularly disturbed by Vane's homophobic attitude toward Twis
Jul 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fun-fun-fun
“Clockwork Twist: Waking” is a nice fantasy/steampunk blend with a sprinkle of magic and a dash of mythology to spice up the mix even more. There’s something sure to please everyone whether a fan of steampunk, fantasy or simply a good read.

“Twist” is an absolutely lovable, somewhat neurotic , multi-faceted character who kept my attention every step of the way. I had to know what made him tick.
For your reading pleasure there’s a wide variety of characters: pirates, “Sights” (people who are bein
Jul 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Wow, this book was so much more than I thought it would be. Did I expect a kick ass, swashbuckling adventure? Yeah, I kind of did~ the synopsis is well written, and makes me look forward to an airship ride to remember. Did I expect a wonderfully colorful steampunk fantasy that includes some interesting beings? Yes again. What I didn't anticipate was how well written and unique this book would be.
Twist is an amazing character~ fragile in some ways, sheltered by choice, but with a depth that is r
Judi Easley
My Review:
Twist is Sighted, which in his case means he can't see with his eyes. He Sees with his sense of touch, Sees damage and how to fix it. He Saw so much damage, that he became damaged by it all and withdrew from the world. Now, he's being drawn out of his seclusion by this temptation of the Clockwork Princess and how he needs to help her.

The crew uses Arabel to Find Twist because that's her Sight. Just as she used her Sight to Find the Princess in the first place. They use Jonas, Arabel's
Jonathan Griffiths
Apr 25, 2013 rated it really liked it
Clockwork Twist, the debut novel from American writer Emily Thompson, is the picaresque tale of Twist, a rather fragile watch repairer unceremoniously whisked away from his quiet existence in rainy Victorian London by a gang of miscreants who may or may not be pirates. Travelling on their steam-powered airship, Twist uses his special power to aid in their quest to find and repair the legendary Clockwork Princess.

Refreshingly for a book in the steampunk genre, very little of the action takes pla
I received a free copy of this book in return for a review.

"My word, you are cute!" pretty much summarises Twist's character -- he's a little reserved, quirky and oh so innocent; you can't help but like him. Other than Mr. Twist himself, some of the shadier characters (Idris, Vane, Quay) were far more interesting than the "good" ones and I hope they reappear in future novels.

I actually wasn't expecting a romance in this book, but I ended up with a double surprise -- it wasn't the straightforw
Janice T.
Apr 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Steampunk, adventure fans.
Clockwork Twist is a fun adventure which takes the reader on a luscious, highly visual journey. Twist, the principal character, quite contentedly mends clocks. His workshop is in an upper room in his London home. He has a Sight, which allows him to see what is amiss in a clock and to easily fix it. This is all well and good until a certain visitor knocks upon his door, and lures him away with the prospect of mending a mechanism that he assumed to be a mere fairy tale; Twist's favorite fairy tale ...more
Kelly Cozy
Mar 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Emily Thompson's steampunk novel takes the reader - and the book's protagonist - on a fun and fascinating quest. It's 1878 London and Twist is a clockmaker and repairer, living in self-imposed isolation. We soon learn why Twist shuns people in general, and physical contact with people in particular. Like many people in this world, he has a magical gift. Twist's gift allows him to see the mechanical damage of the clocks he repairs - however, it also forces him to see the psychological scars and d ...more
Aug 21, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5/5 Stars

The titular Twist is a London watchmaker during an alternate Victorian era. He's abducted by pirates, one of whom is a vampire, so that he can repair the Clockwork Princess, who is in Nepal.

That's your plot summary.

Thing is, the story is pretty darned good; there's lot of swashbuckling derring-do, as well as some thought-provoking material. However, the book itself is marred by editorial errors (homophone problems, typos, etc.) that just jerked me right out of the tale. And, while I r
Jul 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: steampunk, fantasy
I personally bought this book at a convention around Labor Day weekend from the author herself. I also got it signed, which is always a bonus, but haven't read it until now.

The only thing that I'm regretting is that I didn't pick it up sooner as this is a well-written and imaginative book. I'm not quite sure if I can do justice to what is in the synopsis, as it is states what the book is all about. It was the type of steampunk story I was expecting and more that kept me up all night reading it.
Linda Ulleseit
Nov 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya-fantasy
Steampunk is a fairly new addition to my reading list, and this one is excellent. I love the character of Twist and look forward to reading absoutely everything he appears in. The world in this book is detailed and elegant, full of machinery and magic, but it's the characters who really shine. With two full airship crews it might be easy to confuse that many characters, but the author makes each one so unique that they are immediately empathetic (even the 'bad guys') and likeable. They are compl ...more
Ariel Mathis
*An ecopy of this book was given in exchange for a honest review*
I just love a book that tantalizes the senses. I also love how this book read in my head. I felt very at home while reading this story. I love Steampunk reads & this book sated my craving. It was very magical & the details were so vivid in my mind that I could very well see this as a movie. It would be nice. I was surprised how the story unfolded. I really had no idea what to expect when I went in. When I finished I had a s
Nov 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
***Won from giveaway***

Excellent read, funny at times. My first Steampunk novel beside Jules Verne's work. Its League of Extraordinary Gentlemen(Comic version) meets Indian Jones kind of series. Would suggest this novel as a gateway into the genre. Really looking forward to part two. I really like the running joke of the main character finding the world very disturbing due to presence of supernatural/paranormal creatures/person he'll have a run in with. This series need to be optioned into a fil
Michelle Mcgarrity
Jun 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I've read a few steampunk style books but it's not usually at the top of my list. However, I will put the following books on the top of my list to read. I really enjoyed this book. I liked that the characters had depth, there was motivations behind people actions, and they felt real. The traveling was nice because it allowed you to 'visit' different lands and meet interesting people.

If you like adventure and mystery with good characters this is a must read.

Nov 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Twist is a clockmaker living in London, and perfectly happy with his life. When a woman hires him to fix a clockwork princess straight out of fairy tales, he's reluctant to abandon his home, but determined to fix the girl. Because Twist has a Sight: he can see what's wrong with anything he touches. So he's sure he can do it. But pirates and other hazards threaten him . . .

I mostly loved this. Twist is so much fun. He's grumpy about having left home, very vocal about being anti-people, and single
Jun 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-free
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kim Power
Nov 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Delicious with a Twist

A highly original fantasy with a delightful hero. Well written and edited, the author creates a magical world which holds equal parts terror and delight for Twist.
Vancil C. Thomas
Love Steampunk!

Lots of action in this story with quite a bit of steampunk "technology" and a sprinkle of magicalness! Very much worth your time!
Jeanne Johnston
Fun steampunk-y tale that was surprisingly sweet and funny and... am I the only one who pictures Jonas as Cary Elwes? There was quite a bit of deadpan snark that was very Princess Bride-ish.
John S Roth
Feb 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thoroughly Enjoyed This Book!

Great character development, excellent storyline, wonderful interplay and enough plot twists and turns to leave you guessing right up to the end!
Ginni Ghaziri
Feb 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Cute. Love the characters they come alive on the page .
Jelena Bosh
Mar 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Unexpected but I couldn't get enough!!


Not having read a fantasy, adventure, sci-fi book in a long time, I was so eager to delve into Waking.. I have loved every aspect of Twist's journey as it almost always seemed like I was right there with him and his fellow travellers.

Set in 1878, this is not a typical becoming of age story in the least..

Supernatural creatures in the ancient era is something that I have only seen in a handful of books. And by that I mean, a handful of books that have actua
Jul 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
Also published on Too much time, and too little.

Disclaimer: I’ve never before read a steampunk novel or related work of fiction, so I am completely free from any bias as to how things “should be” within this genre. It was one of those Kindle offers that I got, and on a whim thought “steampunk, why not?”

So, that being said I did enjoy my first foray into a steampunk universe very much. It’s full of adventure, interesting clothes and customs, colourful descriptions of airships and floating cities,
Darren Worrow
Feb 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Not for the sake of interest, just purely due to time I admit that I haven’t read so many steampunk books, yet. Of course I do love the ninth art legend, Alan Moore and relished in the last series of Dr Who with its gorgeous Victorian portrayals but now I am already diving into a whole new angle of its ever meandering tangents with Emily Thompson and her, what I see as, uniquely designed fantasy world, wrapped neatly under the banner of “clockpunk.”

Combining a geographically diverse universe of
May 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: _ebooks, steampunk
I was fortunate enough to get a free e-copy when the author briefly made them available for download on Goodreads. In thanks I'd like to offer up a review.

And I'm glad I can make a positive review! I immediately fell in love with Twist. He's such a sweet, quirky character who was dragged out of his comfortable home in London into an worldwide adventure on airship, in a submarine, through jungles and caves. And quite the cast of characters, you have vampires, djinns, kitsunes and of course it wou
Lee French
Mar 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
One part mad adventure, one part wonder, and one part steam, this story is quite entertaining. I had a hard time putting it down and a harder time not picking it back up again. Twist is yanked out of his comfortable little world and learns more about himself than anything else. The character of Twist particularly captured my attention. He's very Victorian and just daft enough to be blindsided by himself.

The supporting cast are vibrant and alive, the world is detailed, and the mythos has that lay
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The Steampunk, Cy...: Brand new indie adventure novel series! 7 18 Jan 06, 2014 10:56AM  
Modern Good Reads: R4R - Clockwork Twist : Waking (steampunk) 20 73 Oct 27, 2013 08:54PM  
  • The Dark Victorian: Risen Volume One
  • Lonely Moon
  • Revenge of the Mad Scientist (Airship Adventure Chronicles #1)
  • Earth and Sun, Cedar and Sage (Gideon and Jedediah, #2)
  • Keeping Merminia (Merminia, #2)
  • Hounds of Autumn
  • Dream (Aisling Trilogy, #2)
  • Enchanted (Sorcery & Science #1)
  • Secrets (Clockwork Skies, #1)
  • The 19 Dragons
  • Red Leaves and the Living Token
  • The Halfling (The Aria Fae Series #1)
  • Steamscape
  • Timepiece (Keeping Time Trilogy #1)
  • Advance (Advance Industries, #1)
  • Chasing the Green Fairy (The Airship Racing Chronicles, #2)
  • Reunion (Wunder, #2)
  • Fate War: Alliance
Emily Thompson is an author and artist, from northern California. Although she adores Steampunk and all things Victoriana, she also writes occasional Sci-fi and fantasy.

After studying film and animation in university, she changed to a Japanese language focus and studied abroad in Tokyo for a year. She received a degree in Japanese and later spent nearly another two years in Japan, teaching English

Other books in the series

Clockwork Twist (7 books)
  • Trick (Clockwork Twist #2)
  • Dreamer (Clockwork Twist #3)
  • Missing (Clockwork Twist #4)
  • Inquest (Clockwork Twist #5)
  • Blood (Clockwork Twist #6)
  • Family (Clockwork Twist #7)