Monday, December 6, 2010


I just finished an incredible story, a book I hadn't heard of that I picked up because our librarians displayed it in the children's section. Today's Marvelous MG Monday is all about THE CLOCKWORK THREE, by Matthew J. Kirby.

The Clockwork Three 

Isn't that a GREAT cover?

Three ordinary children are brought together by extraordinary events. . .

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 a life of freedom.

Hannah is a soft-hearted, strong-willed girl from the tenements, who supports her family as a hotel maid when tragedy strikes and her father can no longer work. She learns about a hidden treasure, which she knows will save her family -- if she can find it.

And Frederick, the talented and intense clockmaker's apprentice, seeks to learn the truth about his mother while trying to forget the nightmares of the orphanage where she left him. He is determined to build an automaton and enter the clockmakers' guild -- if only he can create a working head.

Together, the three discover they have phenomenal power when they team up as friends, and that they can overcome even the darkest of fears.

The first point-of-view shift annoyed me because I wanted to read more about Guiseppe, but then I became just as attached to Hannah and Frederick. The historical fiction element (the little street musicians, kidnapped or sold as slaves and forced to work for their masters) reminded me of OLIVER TWIST, while the fantasy and danger reminded my husband of THE SPIDERWICK CHRONICLES. And while I can see his point, the magic didn't have anything to do with faeries. Mostly, it's more mechanical or functional. We both loved it. The prose is even more beautiful and functional than the magic. 

Have any of you read THE CLOCKWORK THREE? If so, what do you think? It's only been out since October, but I'm still surprised I haven't seen reviews for it.

Shannon Whitney Messenger is also hosting a MMGM and a book giveaway today, if you'd like to hop over there. 


  1. Thanks for this recommendation, Myrna. I'm happy to hear our library system has this book. Matthew Kirby is the client of one of the agents I've interviewed, and I remember thinking THE CLOCKWORK THREE would be an interesting read when he mentioned it. (The agent in question is Stephen Fraser of the Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency, in case anyone's wondering:) )

  2. That DOES sound good and I agree the cover is gorgeous! Very inviting. Thanks for pointing me to it.

  3. Krista, the author mentioned Stephen Fraser in his acknowledgements, in the sort of way that makes you want to query the author's agent. Thanks for reminding me of where I'd heard the name. I knew it looked familiar.

    You're welcome, Catherine!

  4. Ooo, I haven't read this one but it sounds like I need to. Adding it to my TBR list now.

    Thanks so much for sharing Myra. I've added a link to this to today's post, so here's hoping it'll send some people your way. :)

  5. Hurray! It's nice to see another person jump on the MMGM bandwagon. Great choice to spotlight, Myrna! :-)

  6. Sounds wonderful! Do you think my 9-year-old grandson would enjoy it?


  7. I think you'll love it, Shannon , and you're welcome.

    Thank you, Shannon.

    And yes, Sue, I think he would. The main characters aren't much older than he is.

  8. Yay for Middle Grade Mondays! I've been wanting to read this. Thanks for the recommendation!

  9. I was going to ask what MMGM stands for, but Joanne just answered it for me. This book sounds like something I'd like. Going to put it on my list right now. Thanks! :)

  10. I had not heard of this book before and I'm very happy you mentioned it. Sounds good!

  11. This sounds great! I think my Olivia would really enjoy it ... Christmas present, maybe? :)

    Thanks, Myrna!


  12. Oh, this one sounds so great! I'm happy to hear you enjoyed it. I met the author at this summer's SCBWI conference, and he was super super SUPER nice.

  13. I've never heard of it, but it sounds very good!

  14. I just bought this book last month at our bookfair, but haven't read it yet...I'm currently reading The Ranger's Apprentice series, which is really good. Have you read them?

  15. Yes, Hillari, I've read all of the way through Halt's Peril. One of these days, I'm going to recommend it, but I don't usually recommend a series until it's finished.

    Steph, I'm glad the author is nice. I didn't know anything about him until I picked up his book. Speaking of Super Nice Authors, it's lovely to see you over here, and I'm so happy that Anna is out so that everyone can fall in love with it.

    Amy, I think Olivia would really like it. You're welcome!

    Joanne, MMGM high five! Thanks for stopping by!

    Rorie, Catherine, and Susan, if you do read it, would you let me know what you think?

  16. I saw it at B & N the other day and looked at it. Then I thought about my tbr pile and promised to read some more of them before I made any more purchases...LOL, so I bought my daughter some books or Christmas. (I can read them when she's done, so it's not the same as me buying them for me....)

  17. I haven't heard about this one either. Thanks for the heads up! It sounds just like my sort of book. Have a great day, Myrna!