The Dark Unwinding
By Sharon Cameron
Publication date: Sept. 1, 2012
Scholastic Press, 318 pages
A spine-tingling tale of steampunk and spies, intrigue and heart-racing romance!
When Katharine Tulman’s inheritance is called into question by the rumor that her eccentric uncle is squandering away the family fortune, she is sent to his estate to have him committed to an asylum. But instead of a lunatic, Katharine discovers a genius inventor with his own set of rules, who employs a village of nine hundred people rescued from the workhouses of London.
Katharine is now torn between protecting her own inheritance and preserving the peculiar community she grows to care for deeply. And her choices are made even more complicated by a handsome apprentice, a secretive student, and fears for her own sanity.
As the mysteries of the estate begin to unravel, it is clear that not only is her uncle’s world at stake, but also the state of England as Katharine knows it. With twists and turns at every corner, this heart-racing adventure will captivate readers with its intrigue, thrills, and romance.
— Goodreads.com description
The Dark Unwinding by Sharon Cameron was a nice surprise. In the past, steampunk novels have been a snoozefest for me…I just can’t get past the long descriptions of machinery. Not my thing.
This novel is quite different – much more of a quirky story about family and sanity…with just a touch of steampunk. So, if that’s not your thing, don’t be turned off. Truly, I’m not sure this book should even be called steampunk at all…but that’s a longer discussion we won’t get into.
Now, I enjoyed it, but is it a super fast and engaging read? Not really. It definitely dragged in parts, and I can see why it wouldn’t be everyone’s cup of tea.
Still, for me, the wide cast of characters was what made The Dark Unwinding. From the maid to the cook to the lawyer, the town in this book is filled with people who are equal parts eccentric and endearing…by the end, I’d come to feel fondly toward them all.
You can tell Cameron put a lot of thought and love into this book, and I’ll definitely be checking out more of her work in the future!