In the beginning, there was The Strange Case of 16 year old Finley Jayne Sheppard and her unnatural abilities of stomping out anyone who attempted to harm her. Having lost her father Thomas at an early age, Finley fought the two sides of her personality which made her an outcast among 1897 London society.
Shortly thereafter, Finley was literally run over by Griffin King, the Duke of Greythorne, who saw something in Finley that appealed to him, and he decided that he would teach her how to live in peace with the monster inside. Finley soon realized that she was no longer alone, and truly had friends now that she could count on & rely on to watch her back in times of need. Her relationship with Griffin has jumped forward to the point where they are so connected that they would die for the other.
Griffin, who is able to harness the Aether energy better than anyone else, is joined in stomping out evil from the world by his childhood friend Samuel Morgan who is half human and half machine and strong as an ox; the ever dynamic, and feisty mechanical genius Emily O'Brien who can communicate with machines; American cowboy Jasper Renn who has blazing fast speed with guns, and American Wildcat (Cat) who has cat like reflexes and teeth just as sharp.
As an honorary member of Griffin's crew, Jack Dandy is Finley's friend and ally, and the bloke with the ability to use persuasion to make his business even better. In The Girl with the Iron Touch, we were introduced to Mila, the engineered mech who was created to house the villainous madman known as the The Machinist, but has the ability to become human and quickly assimilate the ways of her environment. Mila became friends with Emily and Finley and they've done their best to train her on what it means to be human and even experience love.
As The Girl with the Windup Heart is apparently the last book in the Steampunk Chronicles series, Cross once again puts Griffin's crew in the cross-hairs of their arch-nemesis the Machinist, who takes Griffin into the Aether, and it's up to Finley and crew to save him. It is a battle of wits, strategy, and one final battle royal where only the strongest will survive. But, Cross also offers a second parallel story that features Jack and Mila. If you remember, Jack volunteered to allow Mila to stay with him while she was learning how to become human.
I must stop and applaud Cross for creating Mila. I adore her. I really do. She's such a wonderfully spirited & naive character that makes you giggle out loud, and her relationship with the secretive Jack Dandy is brilliantly written. I love that she tries to find an independent life for herself away from Jack and even finds a place with the Piccadilly Circus for a bit. I love the fact that Dandy is exposed for being someone who actually has a kind heart, and a desire to do what's best for Mila and her future, while trying to protect her from predators in London's society. I love that Dandy and Mila became apart of Griffin's inner circle to the point where they would drop everything to help the other out. I, personally, wouldn't mind seeing a spin-off or novella about Jack and Mila's newest adventures.
Author - Kady Cross
Title - The Girl with the Windup Heart
Series - Steampunk Chronicles
Published by Harlequin Teen
Releases - May 27, 2014
Genre - Steampunk
Format - E-Book 400 pages