Friday, 30 December 2016

Cogling by Jordan Elizabeth

Cogling by Jordan Elizabeth
Published by Curiosity Quills Press on the 25th January 2016.

Where to buy this book:
Buy from independent booksellers via Abebooks
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Buy the paperback from The Book Depository

How I got this book:
Received a review copy from the author

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

When fifteen-year-old Edna Mather tears an expensive and unfamiliar pocket watch off her little brother’s neck, he crumbles into a pile of cogs right before her eyes. Horrified, Edna flees for help, but encounters Ike, a thief who attempts to steal the watch before he realizes what it is: a device to power Coglings—clockwork changelings left in place of stolen children who have been forced to work in factories. Desperate to rescue her brother, Edna sets off across the kingdom to the hags’ swamp, with Ike in tow. There, they learn Coglings are also replacing nobility so the hags can stage a rebellion and rule over humanity. Edna and Ike must stop the revolt, but the populace believes hags are helpful godmothers and healers. No one wants to believe a lowly servant and a thief, especially when Ike has secrets that label them both as traitors. Together, Edna and Ike must make the kingdom trust them or stop the hags themselves, even if Ike is forced to embrace his dark heritage and Edna must surrender her family.

I enjoyed reading my first Jordan Elizabeth book, Escape From Witchwood Hollow, so was delighted to also be offered a review copy of Cogling. I especially love the fabulous cover art which was created by Mandie Manzano.

Cogling is billed as steampunk and is set in Victorian era sort-of-England. It does rely more of magical and fantasy elements rather science fiction, but Elizabeth's premise of witch-like hags replacing children with automata counterparts is a wonderfully steampunky idea. When her young brother, Harrison, becomes one of the taken children, Edna Mather sets out on a quest to discover his fate and rescue him. On the way she is mostly helped - and sometimes hindered! - by Ike, a young man of dubious honesty. Ike also provides a burgeoning love interest for our Edna although, as this is a YA novel, their romance is suitably muted.

I liked Elizabeth's descriptive prowess and, as with Escape From Witchwood Hollow, I found it easy to immerse myself into the world she created. I wasn't so convinced by all the characters this time around though, mainly because most of the magicals and animals weren't given complete personalities. Perhaps a couple of the journey twists and turns could have been sacrificed in order to allow readers to get to know certain of the hags and ogres in greater depth? On the whole, however, Cogling is an entertaining and fast-paced read and I would follow Edna and Ike on further adventures should a sequel be in the pipeline.

Search Lit Flits for more:
Books by Jordan Elizabeth / Fantasy fiction / Books from America


  1. I fell in love with this cover the moment I set eyes on it, and it made me want to know more about the story. I am so glad you could enjoy this one and that the steampunk world was so interesting. It sounds like the pace kept you from getting to know the story a little too much, but otherwise that this was a good read ^.^

    1. It's gorgeous artwork and I love how the image fits with the story too.