Book Reviews

Review: Cogheart by Peter Bunzl

Cogheart is a tender middle grade about a girl’s quest to save her father. But along the way, you meet some charming characters and see how the Mechanicals are treated.


Lily’s life is in mortal peril. Her father is missing and now silver-eyed men stalk her through the shadows. What could they want from her?

With her friends—Robert, the clockmaker’s son, and Malkin, her mechanical fox—Lily is plunged into a murky and menacing world. Too soon Lily realizes that those she holds dear may be the very ones to break her heart. . . .

Murder, mayhem and mystery meet in this gripping Victorian adventure.


(Disclaimer: I received this free book from Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

Cogheart is a book I think I really would have adored as a child. It has a tender relationship between Lily and her father, a story about friendship, mechanical creatures, and people who make mistakes. At the heart it’s a book about sacrifice, hard decisions, and how we deal with the mistakes we make. It’s also a story where Lily has to fight against what the adults in her life are pushing her towards, even when she knows it is dangerous. So, in other words, a book that would have been just up my alley.

But what’s so great about Cogheart is that there are elements that are more complex, so for older readers it’s still a fabulous and entertaining read. The biggest element that caught my eye was the way other adults and people treat the Mechanical creatures, like they are incapable of emotions and thus worthy of disregard and cruelty. As someone who wrote a thesis on cyborgs, Cogheart has interesting discussions both about automatons, and cyborgs. So I feel like this middle grade would be a great one to give to younger readers who want to start thinking about how we define humans, how we treat them, and what it says about us.

Find Cogheart on Goodreads, Amazon, Indiebound & The Book Depository.


Who is your favorite cyborg?

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