Reviewed by Liz Konkel for Readers' Favorite
The Clockwork Ice Dragon by Liz Delton is a Steampunk Christmas Novella. Soldark's Magistrate of Invention is opening its doors to non-union inventors, but their generous opportunity comes with a catch. The deadline is on Christmas Day which only gives Aurelia Sundon a few days to finish her invention. Aurelia has created a great invention that she fully believes will guarantee security for her family if she can be finished by the deadline. As if that wasn't enough to worry about, Aurelia runs into an old love that betrayed her. Frederick Grandville has entered the competition with his own invention which could cause serious competition for Aurelia's invention. His invention of a clockwork dragon has the ability to manipulate the weather, only the creation has gone out of control and has instigated infernal snow. Now he needs Aurelia's help to bring the clockwork dragon back down and put an end to this insane winter before it's too late.
Liz Delton has created a dazzling novella that brings the joy of Christmas into the world of steampunk through the wonder of an invention. The novella is a quick read but Delton makes the most out of every page with little details that deliver the elements of steampunk that pull you into Aurelia's world. Her wonder and determination are the right ingredients to create a brilliant invention and protagonist. The story focuses on the dynamic between Aurelia and Frederick which is rooted in their complicated history and the new rivalry of their competition. The two have a weighted history and now they're drawn back together through what they both love: invention. The steampunk world is touched with a Christmas element and a clockwork dragon that feels as magical as it does mechanical. The creation can manipulate the weather which has now spiraled out of control and created a winter that poses a threat to everyone so Aurelia takes the heroic approach and puts her own issues aside to stop this dangerous change in the weather. Delton has created an ideal read for those that love holiday stories, novellas, steampunk worlds, and stories about invention. The Clockwork Ice Dragon is a charming read that blends Christmas and steampunk together for a lovely story that draws the magic out of invention in a tale about a second chance, creation and confronting the past.