The Starlight Watchmaker may be physically slight, but this book is full of heart, with plenty of excitement crammed into its just-over-100 pages, and vividly-drawn characters who stay with you long after you have turned the last one.
Set in an alien world, where survival depends on the light of the stars, this is the story of Hugo, an android with incredible moving tattoos, who makes a sparse living as a watchmaker at the Galaxy’s elite academy.
Hugo is irritated when Dorian, a wealthy, green-skinned student disturbs his solitude – until he sees that Dorian’s obnoxiousness masks kindness. They begin to work together, first to solve the immediate mystery of a broken time-travel watch, and then to tackle a problem that has far deeper implications for their society.
A sci-fi story that reflects many of the challenges we face today, The Starlight Watchmaker left me invested in the fate of its remarkable characters (such as Lady Ada de Winters – an island who will grow up to be a planet) and reflecting on its message about caring for those who it would be easy to ignore – whatever galaxy you live in.
The Starlight Watchmaker, by Lauren James (Barrington Stoke)