A true page turning adventure, Amber Cayley
September 08, 2021
“Until today, being called Brasswitch would have got you killed. Now, it might save your life…”
Brasswitch and Bot (#1 The Rise of the Remarkables) by Gareth Ward tells the tale of an orphaned girl called Wrench who is forced to show her magical powers to stop a steam train from a fatal crash.
The only problem is that those powers have got many like her killed by the infamous Regulators. Saved from an untimely death by the mechanical Bot, they must work together to stop the threat of a mysterious aberration.
Recruited into a world full of danger and lies, Wrench must learn to harness her powers if they are to survive their mission.
Wrench is on her way to an interview with the Clifford Tower Regulators when the train she is on lurches forward and the driver shouts “NO BRAKES!”
Fearing an accident like the one that killed her parents, Wrench springs to action. She is a Brasswitch, meaning she has a not-very-normal talent of being able to sense mechanical mechanisms and change them with her will. She ends up in the clutches of a dreaded regulator and faces death. But Bot saves her and together with Octavia, a blue-tentacled being, and Plum, a boy who has mastered the powers of the elements, they uncover the mystery of the aberration threat and all those involved.
In this story, the stakes are high from the very first page. As you read, you discover more about the prejudiced world Wrench lives in, and you start to wonder how many secrets the sinister Department of Regulators have kept from the public.
Brasswitch and Bot is the first in a new series by the great author Gareth Ward, and it hooks you in straight away. You become invested in the characters, and you can’t help but try and uncover clues along the way. The world Wrench lives in is well-built and I love the steampunk feel with all the cool gadgets and advancements to technology in the novel.
Wrench is a strong female protagonist who doesn’t always fit in but instead embraces who she is and uses her differences to help the world that is never nice to her. In doing so, she finds a place where she belongs. Wrench is a character that young girls and boys alike can look up to.
This book is a good-sized read and keeps you gripped right till the very end. It is full of humour and fun alongside a deep storyline of prejudice and mystery, which makes for a surprisingly good mix. I would recommend this book to tweens and early teens and anyone who’s a fan of a good steampunk adventure.
Brasswitch and Bot is a true page turner and will keep the reader hooked well into the night.
- Amber Cayley is year 9 at Sacred Heart Girls’ College in New Plymouth.