Author: Betsy Cornwell
Publication date: August 25, 2015
Publisher: Clarion Books
Summary: Nicolette’s awful stepsisters call her “Mechanica” to demean her, but the nickname fits: she learned to be and inventor at her mother’s knee. Her mom is gone now, though, and the Steps have turned her into a servant in her own home.
But on her sixteenth birthday, Nicolette discovers a secret workshop in the cellar and begins to dare to imagine a new life for herself. Could the mysterious books and tools hidden there-and the mechanical menagerie, led by a tiny metal horse names Jules-be the key to escaping her dreary existence? With a technological exposition and royal ball on the horizon, the timing might just be perfect for Nicolette to earn her freedom at last.
Mechanica is a mix of old and new. Weaving together the fairy tale we all know and one we’ve never quite heard before. With an amazing cast of characters, set against a beautiful background you can’t help but fall in love with Betsy’s retelling. This story follows Nicolette, who not only lost both her parents, but was turned in to a maid in her own home. On her sixteenth birthday Nicolette finds her mothers workshop, and with the help of Jules, a tiny mechanical horse, and some new friends Nicolette begins to hope for something better than being just a maid.
Honestly these were some of the best characters I’ve ever read. They were funny and sweet and I loved Nicolette, but I loved Caro even more. Caro is someone I wish that I could be friends with. She’s someone who has earned a spot in my heart forever. The minute she meets Nick she becomes friends with her and treats her as if she is family and I loved that. I often find that I become very attached to people, much in the way Caro has to Nick and I always find myself connecting so much to those characters. She was funny and sassy and I didn’t care what others thought and she was loyal. I love that she worked so hard to help Nick out in any way she could. The world that Betsy created is filled with strong women, and it is amazing, because they are strong in their own ways. Nicolette and Caro are both so similar and different at the same time. They want different things out of life and they both live differently but they are both amazing and strong. I loved Fin I really did, but the way that Betsy ended this one was just simply fantastic. I don’t know why because I am a sucker for a fairy tale ending but this was just so well done. Not to mention I love characters that are so independent. In Mechanica, Caro and Fin both mention that Caro has had multiple people she has been with/fallen for and it wasn’t a big deal it just was what it was and I thought that it was such a small element but it made me like the way that Betsy took Caro’s character. It wasn’t something I have read a lot of in YA, so it was interesting to read about it.
In this book there are the Fey and the King believes that the Fey have killed his wife, the queen. So he shuts them out and bans anyone from using their magic in any way. Obviously people still do, but they do it in secret. Now I really hope there are more in this series because they left a lot unanswered. We didn’t find out what the ashes are, nor did we find out how they work. So there is definitely room for more. And personally I would love to be back in Nicolette’s world again. There really isn’t any more that I can say about this book, other than it is fantastic. I think it was just so brilliantly done. the world and characters were just so amazing and I loved every second of it. This is a book, even if you don’t like fairy tales, that I think you should check out! It’s such a fast read and it flies by because you won’t be able to put this one down.
I gave it 5 stars and I think you guys would absolutely love this one. So please do yourself a favor and go buy this book!