Basic Book Information
Print Length: 280 pages
Price: US, $15.95 | CAN $21.95
Genres: YA Fiction, YA Paranormal, YA Romance, YA Steampunk
Publisher: Meerkat Press, LLC
Publication Date: March 31, 2020
Summary: Book 1 of the Steambound Trilogy. When Gabby’s hand turns to steam, her mom hires an engineer to build a clockwork glove. It’s the last thing Gabby wants—if only she could be normal. But when her mom is attacked by something monstrous, normal is no longer an option. Now the only person she can turn to is a grizzled detective, who promises to help her become something more. Meanwhile, Kemple’s foster dad treats him like a slave. And the beatings are getting worse. So when a rebellious girl named Josephyn arrives—with a plan to escape to the city—he doesn’t hesitate. But there are creatures in Iron Bay whose slashes are worse than skin-deep. And as Kemple evolves into something inhuman, his search for a cure begins. They are strangers in a city where carriages rattle, airships rumble, and their own dark pasts continue to haunt them. Soon their paths will collide, and the girl who slays monsters will come face to face with the boy who is becoming a beast.
This story starts off with a check in at the doctor's office. Gabby and her mom are sitting in the lobby, waiting for the doctor to call them in. Gabby, whose right hand, (the doctors say) is a "special case", is impatient.
I'm sorry to cut this off, but, can I just say, I LOVED THIS LITTLE MOMENT. Every kid hates going to the doctor's office, am I right? Well, I sure did! I remember when I was a kid, I was scared, nervous, and mad. Let's be honest, we all know the wait makes it worse. And I felt like this every time I got a check-up. So, I'm happy, even nostalgic, that Richardson included this. It was so cute, memorable, and relatable.
Anyway, her mom promises her that there will be no visits after this one, so, Gabby doesn't have to worry. However, when they find out that Gabby's hand has turned to steam, things get complicated. You read that right. Mom is horrified and worried thus recruiting an engineer to construct a clockwork glove for Gabby. Looking back, I don't really know why Gabby was mad about that decision. I'd take a clockwork glove any day than having to wear an jar around my hand. But, moving on, Gabby is already an insecure/sassy kid. Gabby wants to be normal, not different. Peer pressure, am i right?
The strange mechinism was surely a sight to behold and that was probably the reason why her peers bullied her for it. The glove was strong and it would prove, later on, quite useful for certain situations despite it's bulky frame.
Somewhere, far away, lies a boy named Kemple. Living with his foster dad has taught Kemple a lot of things. To be cautious, fearful, to obey and to deal with the abuse. The new girl, Josephyn, clearly doesn't know these rules. Or she does but chooses not to follow them. Kemple isn't exactly sure. She's rebellious, reckless and brave. But when Kemple takes a beating for her, Jesephyn realizes not to mess around. In fact, she tells him that they don't deserve this cruel environment. Kemple agrees, but he's not used to trouble or running away for that matter. His decision changes after Abner (drunk and asleep) gives them a chance to escape to Iron Bay. A city crowded with machinary, carriages, airships and people. Josephyn, with the idea, gives them both "excuses" and teaches Kemple how to steal. That is their only tactic on how to survive.
Gabby, near by, faces a tragic incident. Gabby and her mom were preparing to go to a convention. The main reason for Gabby's excitement is that she's hoping that she'll find one inventor that will help fix her hand. Oh, the solutions! Sadly, her mom gets killed right before they leave, attacked by a monster. This in turn of events lead Gabby to a detective who has plans for her to take up her revenge.
As Gabby and Kemple grow older, they will soon meet. Will a warrior who slays beasts ever forgive her past and help a boy who is turning into a monster? It's a internal struggle for both characters as they try to find themselves. A desperate, delicate romance sided along with action, adventure and the go-to steam fun!
Some of my favorite parts were as mentioned (the doctor's office) and the kiss. I was cheering them on and you do not understand how much fangirl screams came out of me when they met. Like, this is a "meant to be" in my opinion. I also loved the fighting/chasing scenes because they were so intense and dramatic. Richardson does a great way with his characters, even Viola, for their emotions and dialogue. As a steampunk nerd, I think this book does a fantastic way of portraying the genre. Not once were there more details than enough of the machines at hand. This series has a lot of potenial, aka I can't wait for book 2!
All in all, this book was amazing and kept me flipping pages faster than a speeding bullet (see what I did there?). Beast Heart stayed with me long after I finished reading. Meet cutes for one and the wild rides.
Thanks for reading my review and a shoutout to Meerkat Press for an ARC. Bye!
Rating: ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤