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(The Cogheart Adventures #1)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  1,457 ratings  ·  321 reviews
Thirteen-year-old Lily Harman always dreamed of adventure. A strong-willed girl, Lily felt trapped in a life of Victorian stuffiness at her prim boarding school. But after her father-a famous inventor-disappears on a routine zeppelin flight, Lily's life gets turned upside down.

Now cared for by her guardian, the heartless Madame Verdigris, Lily is quite certain that she's b
Paperback, US, 368 pages
Published February 12th 2019 by North Star Editions/Jolly Fish Press (first published September 1st 2016)
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4.05  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,457 ratings  ·  321 reviews

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jv poore
Set in the skies above and the streets running through London, this scintillating story of clockworks, mechanimals, hybrids and humans is the book that will keep kids reading well past bed-times. It has to be hard for a young reader to step away from this fast-paced, perilous plot because as an adult, I found myself hurrying through a chore or four so that I could get back to the search for the oh-so-secret cogheart.

Professor John’s airship was attacked and it seems the sole survivor is Malkin,
Lizzy (Bent Bookworm)
Cogheart is a tale with many moving pieces, not unlike the steam-punk mechanicals that Lily's father builds. Unfortunately I think it's a bit flat, as I never felt very attached to the characters. Also, for a middle grade novel, there is an awful lot of proverbializing and "lessons learned" sort of speeches, which I found annoying and am sure many of the target audience would as well. It also has a bit of a dark feel in some places, not unlike the Series of Unfortunate Events series - only these ...more
Sep 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: children fan of science-fiction & steampunk
4 stars for this exciting steampunk adventure.

Cogs and chronometers, this book is amazing! It caught my eye in Waterstones because of the beautiful cover and since I’ve never read something steampunk-related before, I decided to give this a try. And I’m glad I did, because I loved this book.

Cogheart is a middle-grade adventure story that takes place in Victorian London. We follow Lily, a headstrong, 11-year old girl who’s father, the talented inventor John Hartman, has gone missing and is pres
Robin Stevens
Apr 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A really wonderful steampunk story that reminded me of Philip Reeve's Mortal Engines series. It's pacy and exciting, and I loved the world that Peter has built.

*Please note: this review is meant as a recommendation only. Please do not use it in any marketing material, online or in print, without asking permission from me first. Thank you!*
Annemieke / A Dance with Books
Thank you to Netgalley and North Star Editions for the review copy in exchange for an honest review.

For a while I had my eye on Cogheart to purchase as an ebook. Then I stumbled upon it on Netgalley where it was getting a rerelease this year with North Star Editions and I knew I had to request it. This is just a lovely, delicious steampunk middle grade novel.

The story starts us off with Prof Hartman who gets attacked on his air ship. His mechanimal Maulkin escapes and is sent with a message to
Sep 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Oh, be still my heart! This is one of the most creative steam punk novels for teens! Lily and Jack are really just adorable and brave as they navigate their way through dangers along with mechfox. I just wanted to hang out them and be a kid again! I was able to get lost in that world completely. The author managed to paint the steam punk world very vividly along with words such as cogs, by the ticks, and so forth. There are many factors in the book we deal with in real life. Overall, this book g ...more
Hafsa Sabira
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another version of this review can be found here.

Received with many thanks in exchange for an honest review from the publisher.

Cogheart by Peter Bunzl was a true delight to read. A middle-grade steampunk adventure set in Victorian England, this book has mechanical, mechanimals, hybrids, steam-powered airships and so much more. What first caught my eye was the brilliantly done cover- simply beautiful, don't you think? It gives you an idea of what to expect- two fabulous protagonists, a mechanical
So, this is a rough one for me to review. Anyone who has been following me for any length of time knows how much I love Middle Grade books. There's something beautiful about a tough topic dealt with in a way that is consumable by young readers. Even better, there's something lovely about watching a young person conquer an unimaginable adventure. I always have high hopes for all the MG books that I read, and this was no exception.

At first, I was enchanted with the idea of a steampunk story for yo
Rebecca Jane Brown
Part of this review contains spoilers, I'll point out before I mention any! Apart from that, read away!


I stumbled across this book accidentally in my library, whilst searching for another. I must admit that it's cover captured my attention before it's contents. I sat down with it for half an hour before deciding to commit and take it home to finish... :).

This was in the children's/young adult section and it did read like a children's/very young adult book... It would have been something I'd ha
Kerri Duff
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was beautiful. It was charming and quaint, set in London, 1896. The characters were wonderful, I loved Lily and know she would have been a childhood favourite/hero of mine. It's not merely her though - all the characters were so well formed, including the wonderful Malkin (a mechanical fox), Robert (the clock makers son) and the villains. It's actually rather scary at times which I appreciated - it's a children's book that isn't glossing over death or peril but it isn't glorifying it e ...more
Jan 21, 2019 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
What are the Cogheart Adventure books about?

The Cogheart Adventure books are fantastical action-packed stories for ages 8+ set in an alternative Victorian world. They feature three main characters: Lily, the fiery and quick-witted daughter of two world famous inventors, Robert, a talented and thoughtful clockmaker’s son and Malkin, a scruffy and opinionated mechanical fox. The three heroes must use every ounce of their courage and cunning as they face a series of mysterious life-threatening adve
Nov 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is my first steampunk, Victorian adventure and I had no idea what to expect! “Punchcards And pistons!” This book was so much fun!

Lily is a fiesty, young girl living away from home in an all girl’s school, when she learns her father is missing and presumed dead. This is where her adventure takes off!

Lily was being protected by her father, but she doesn’t even know why. Now she is being hunted for an invention her father was trying so hard to protect. Does she find the invention that everyone
Aug 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An exciting and gripping page turner of an adventure set in an alternate steampunk, Victorian England. With dastardly villains and two brilliant lead characters!

I really enjoyed this and am definitely intrigued to see where it goes from here. Works nicely as a stand alone though a sequel is planned, so looks to be a fun set of mysteries. Was brilliant to see a strong female lead who breaks the boundaries of her time period, and the writing makes note of this too!
Emma Radford
Apr 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a great read - brilliant protagonists, gripping adventure and crazy inventions in this steampunk novel. Look forward to the next instalment.
Jan 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This kid tho. It’s very fun and adventurous. It has mystery to it and at one point it gets very gruesome. 4.5 stars. This book is really good.
Jan 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, arc, bt-e-book, fiction
Cogheart by Peter Bunzl is a fun middle school adventure set in the late 1800s.

I don’t read a lot of middle school books, but I’m glad I picked this one up! Cogheart was such a cute read! It was a playful book that set a frolicking pace and was jam-packed with action.

I adored the storyline for Cogheart! When Lily’s father goes missing, presumed dead, Lily’s world is turned upside down. She doesn’t know who to call friend or foe and finds herself in the middle of an intrigue she doesn’t fully und
Aug 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wish I had read this as a kid, eight years old me would have been very into it. Thirty-one year old me has to recognise that it's a kids book. It's an interesting take on Victorian England. I'd recommend for 9+ (it can be creepy in parts and a bit violent, not necessarily gory but just a bit ew). It's made my shelf (love the cover) and I'd recommend it happily enough to parents/kids/adults who read kids books.
HP Saucerer
Sep 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: steampunk, adventure
A marvelous, rip-roaring steampunk adventure, packed with danger and daring, dastardly villains, two brilliant lead characters and lashings of mystery and nerve-jangling suspense. Positively tocking brilliant.
Sep 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Review: This had a hard time, initially, getting up to speed. We get a little mired in a “Matilda” like story where Lily is at boarding school with a mean head mistress while her Father suddenly goes missing. I can see where some reviewers lacked the patience to see it through or it affected their perception of the book entire. If you can get through the first 3rd of the novel, you will strike gold and become engaged in a steampunkian adventure.

Like most novels, once the movement begins in earne
"No one conquers fear easily. It takes practice to reach true heights; a brave heart to win great battle."

2.5 stars

I liked some aspects of the story but didn't got attached to any of the characters or the story line. But it was a fun and action-packed adventure through the sky.
I like steampunk, so I was drawn to this. I love Malkin.
I'm afraid I found it very predictable, and the narrator of the audiobook had a strange inflection at times that made it sound awkward, so it only gets a 3 from me.
Jan 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks, own, review-copies
Full Review
I absolutely adored this book! It was honestly so hard choosing my favorite quote to put at the top of this review because I had so many highlighted. I'm a big fan of lyrical writing - it helps pull me into the story's world more - and Peter Bunzl's writing style is beautiful, especially for a middle grade! The writing was simple enough to be understood, but still enjoyable for anyone who picks it up, no matter what age!

Lily is a great main character! She's realistic and relatable and
Chimene Bateman
Dec 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my most memorable books this year, not just because it's well-written with engaging characters and a steampunk theme, but also because it is currently my 7 year old son's favourite book EVER. It's the longest, most complicated book he has read to date on his own -- he is bursting with pride in his achievement -- and we have had many animated discussions about it. He is on the second book of the series now but he still carries Cogheart round with him as a kind of talisman (a few pages are ...more
Alex Peachman
This book definitely got more exciting towards the end, and it was worth reading on to get there. I liked the mix of historical and sci-fi - it is set in the late Victorian period, but has robots in it! I think that's what they call 'steam punk'!
Aug 13, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: steampunk, childlit
Honestly, I would rather give it a 2.5 stars, but since it's not possible it will be 3, as it was a quite pleasant book to read. I really liked the universe in which the story is set, it's steampunk and awesome (mechanimals!! mech-fox! balloons! air-pirates! penny dreadfuls! clocks and cogs! Everything I love), and the story flows rather well, in spite of some lengths (it may be me, but I found the descriptions of fights/attacks really hard to read/boring). However, I was quite disappointed by t ...more
Oct 18, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Cogheart by Peter Bunzl was a book received to review from Toppsta

I applied to review this book because I thought it would be a suitable one for by 10 year old grandson. He likes, mystery, magic and adventure – all contained in this book.

It is set in the Victorian era, before electricity and computers, where steam powers the world. Clockwork mechanisms are made by specialists, and wind up servants have been invented. There is a rumor that a perpetual motion machine exists, and someone is willing
Aug 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a wonderful combination of historical adventure and steampunk fantasy with a cinematic feel and yet, I think, has a timeless, classic quality that makes it appeal to a wide readership.

The story begins with the disappearance of Lily's father and we are then gradually drawn into an adventure that builds to a thrilling climax. Lily is great, I love a bookworm with attitude! However it was the more timid Robert who I really warmed to as he conquered his fears and learned to find the courage
This book was so wonderful! I'm fairly sure it's been written for younger reader than 21 but I still adored it and cannot wait for the next one (only a few more days until it comes out!)

Although I guessed some of the plot before it happened I still was totally hooked on the plot and was always desperate to know what was going to happen next. I love the worldbuilding so much and I just wanna get back in there and explore this version of Victoria's England! The characters were totally adorable too
Matilda Chapman
I went into this book expecting to love it. The plot sounded incredible and the cover is simply gorgeous. Prior to starting Cogheart, I was reading multiple books per week. However, this took me just under a month. The characters were underdeveloped and dull. Even Malkin the mechanical fox wasn't as amazing as I'd expected him to be. The world in which it was set was not very well described so you felt a bit lost and the battle moments were tedious at best.

The only book so far this year I almos
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Really, really long Bio:

Peter Bunzl is an author, filmmaker & animator who writes quirky tales about finding your place in the world and what makes you unique. Stories of family and humanity and where they begin and end. He loves cinematic images, magical adventures and big odd ideas!

His series of children’s novels The Cogheart Adventures are tales of danger and daring, catastrophes and courag

Other books in the series

The Cogheart Adventures (3 books)
  • Moonlocket (The Cogheart Adventures, #2)
  • Skycircus (The Cogheart Adventures, #3)
“Feelings and intuition, love and compassion, those are the things make a soul, not blood and bones or machine parts.” 1 likes
“No one conquers fear easily, Robert. It takes a brave heart to win great battles.” 1 likes
More quotes…