The Watchmaker's Daughter

Rated 4.73/5 based on 11 reviews
India Steele is desperate. Her father is dead, her fiancé took her inheritance, and the only person who'll employ her is a mysterious man from America. A man who possesses a watch that keeps him alive. More
Available ebook formats: epub
About C.J. Archer

Over 2 MILLION books sold!

C.J. Archer is the USA Today bestselling author of over 50 historical fantasy and historical mystery novels as well as historical romances set in Elizabethan England.

C.J. has loved history and books for as long as she can remember and feels fortunate that she found a way to combine the two. She has at various times worked as a librarian, IT support person and technical writer but in her heart has always been a fiction writer. She lives in Melbourne, Australia, with her husband, 2 children and Coco the black and white cat.

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About the Series: Glass and Steele
Historical fantasy mystery series set in Victorian London.

Also in Series: Glass and Steele

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Reviews of The Watchmaker's Daughter by C.J. Archer

Lady Li Andre reviewed on July 29, 2022

Well written with interesting characters. Good historical context with just a touch of magic. A couple of interesting twists to the mystery kept me turning pages.
(reviewed 29 days after purchase)
Dan Davies reviewed on Jan. 21, 2022

Charming! A nonstop joy to read. Loved the characters. As ever and forever, there is much to be said about the scabrous nature of men and the confounding stupidity of their mulish controlling ways. The brutes! I’m guessing this story hits all the right notes for a drama of romantic conflict. Works for me. So, apart from hanging up on one or two minor vagaries of language, the only hint of a — SPOILER ALERT— critique I have to offer is this: it seems more than a little surprising, based on what we learn, how some folks don’t check their ammunition before they venture out into the swamp at night. A lively well-written story! FIVE StARS. Love the cover, especially the mysterious clock dial—
(reviewed 29 days after purchase)
Lisabet Sarai reviewed on Jan. 21, 2022

After years of apprenticeship to her father, India Steele is as competent a watchmaker as any in 1890’s London, but as a woman she’s prohibited from practicing her profession. When her father dies suddenly, her unscrupulous fiancé breaks off their engagement and assumes ownership of her father’s watch shop, which she’d assumed would be hers. In one fell swoop, India loses her beloved parent, her intended spouse, her home and her livelihood.

Desperate, she takes a commission from a mysterious American visitor, Mr. Matthew Glass, helping him search London for the man who created his very special watch. Although Mr. Glass is in the prime of life and has a powerful physique, he is clearly quite ill. Somehow, his watch has the power to temporarily return him to health, but its efficacy seems to decline each time he uses it.

India accepts temporary accommodation in her employer’s fine town house, which is also occupied by his peculiar associates: his cousin Wilhelmina, who wears male clothing and insists on being called Willie; his brash, foul-mouthed cook and deputy Duke; and his one-eyed driver Cyclops. As she assists Matthew in his quest, without any success, her suspicions about his true identity grow. A dangerous American outlaw is reported to be hiding out in London; everything seems to suggest that Matthew may in fact be that vicious desperado. India is torn between her increasing attraction to her enigmatic employer and her temptation to contact the authorities and claim the bounty for his capture.

Twice a year, Smashwords runs a site-wide sale that makes it easy for authors to offer their books at a discount, or for free. I’ve found that this is a great opportunity for me to explore the work of new authors. I picked up a free copy of The Watchmaker’s Daughter, attracted by its lovely cover. The novel had me hooked from the first page.

India is a delightful character, somewhat reminiscent of my own Victorian engineer Gillian Smith – though far more proper! At twenty seven, she’s considered an unmarriageable spinster, but she’s more concerned about the practical issues of supporting herself than about matrimony. Intelligent and level-headed as well as being technically skilled, India is bold in pursuing her objectives and not afraid to speak her mind. She is, nevertheless, a well-bred lady. She knows how to act malleable and polite when that is what’s required.

Matt and his entourage of American misfits provide a great contrast to India’s quintessential Englishness. The novel suggests a considerable gulf between England and its former colony; Londoners seem to view America as barely civilized!

As the book progresses, it provides a variety of surprises regarding Matt’s identity, as well as the history of his watch. When events accelerate to an exciting and satisfying climax, India proves herself to be a true heroine – and reaps her just reward.

The Watchmaker’s Daughter includes just a hint of magic, which the author handles very well. I prefer stories where supernatural influences have clear limits to those where anything might happen.

Overall, I really enjoyed The Watchmaker’s Daughter, enough that I may purchase the next book in the series (called “Glass and Steele”).

Which is, of course, why authors give away their books for free!
(reviewed 22 days after purchase)
waywardstranger reviewed on Jan. 16, 2022

Very much enjoyed what i read
(reviewed 21 days after purchase)
Papri Rudra reviewed on July 26, 2021

The character development and story telling is good enough to keep you engaged. The mystery at the heart of the novel is obvious, so no surprise endings there. However, this is a series, so perhaps there will be more secrets revealed later, to make it more interesting. For the time being, I needed a quick read. This one was not exactly that but I liked it enough to think about reading more from this author , maybe sometime soon.
(reviewed 22 days after purchase)
Holyoke reviewed on July 19, 2021

Enjoyed very much. Fast moving. Few sex references but liked there was no jumping in and out of bedroom scenes throughout the whole book. Liked the ending. P
(reviewed the day of purchase)
Holyoke reviewed on July 19, 2021
(no rating)
Enjoyed very much. Fast moving. Few sex references but liked there was no jumping in and out of bedroom scenes throughout the whole book. Liked the ending. P
(reviewed the day of purchase)
Robin Bell reviewed on Feb. 20, 2020

This is fun story, that is well written and carries the reader along nicely.
(reviewed 55 days after purchase)
Dianeee reviewed on Jan. 8, 2020

Very well done. I enjoyed it immensely.
(reviewed 8 days after purchase)
ncdev group reviewed on July 8, 2019

great book!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
(review of free book)
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