Review: The Watchmaker of Filigree Street by Natasha Pulley

I finally got around to reading this book – you know, it’s another one with a weird title, so I was bound to read it sometime – as I said in the Weird Titles post I did – and I’m not sure what I expected, but I enjoyed it anyways!


Spoiler Free Review

Title: The Watchmaker of Filigree Street

Author: Natasha Pulley

Published: Bloomsbury USA, 2015

Pages: 318

Some links: Goodreads and Amazon


(from GR) 1883. Thaniel Steepleton returns home to his tiny London apartment to find a gold pocket watch on his pillow. Six months later, the mysterious timepiece saves his life, drawing him away from a blast that destroys Scotland Yard. At last, he goes in search of its maker, Keita Mori, a kind, lonely immigrant from Japan. Although Mori seems harmless, a chain of unexplainable events soon suggests he must be hiding something. When Grace Carrow, an Oxford physicist, unwittingly interferes, Thaniel is torn between opposing loyalties.


This book had caught my eye when it was first released, but I didn’t pick it up. Then out of the blue, I received it as a gift from a friend for my birthday, but still I did not pick it up to read it. I finally decided to put it onto my holiday TBR, and then I finally found the time to read it.

This is one of those books that, no matter how many times you read the blurb, you’ll never be truly ready for what’s inside. It throws lots of things at you – most of them unexpected – yet the pace of this book remains, until the climax, relatively slow and sure. I was sucked into the action before I was really sure it had happened, and from that moment on I was really needing to know what happened at the end. And since finishing, I’ve not really been able to put into words my experience. But I’m trying.

I enjoyed the characters. I’m not sure if I would describe them as likeable, or one’s that I’ll remember in the future, but I enjoyed their realness. I enjoyed that they showed different aspects of the historical era the book was set in, and for the most part, I could see their motives. I enjoyed learning more about certain characters through steps back and forth in time, and at the end I was really rooting for Thaniel to succeed and get what he wanted.

I also enjoyed the historical setting; it satisfied a craving for a historical novel that I didn’t really know I had. And I liked how it should different sides of society within a changing London.

But for some reason, I’m still a little bit unsure of my own feelings. I know I enjoyed it, and I can tell you some reasons why, but I’m still largely unsure. I think I’ll need to read some more of this author to really get a sense of her style and prose. And maybe that’ll help me.

My Rating: 3.5 Stars!

Even though something fell a little short for me, I’d still really recommend this novel. For a debut, it had lots of interesting factors and Pulley used thought-provoking characters to reel you into a game of mystery which had me guessing until the end.


A good read, for sure! If you want something historical and mysterious, this might just take your fancy!


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