The Incredible Charlotte Sycamore and the Secret Traps by Kate Maddison

December 2nd, 2014 Kimberly Review 66 Comments

2nd Dec
The Incredible Charlotte Sycamore and the Secret Traps by Kate Maddison
The Incredible Charlotte Sycamore and the Secret Traps
by Kate Maddison
Series: Charlotte Sycamore #2
Genres: Steampunk
Source: Author
Purchase: Amazon
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Sixteen-year-old Charlotte Sycamore lives in Buckingham Palace and is hiding her secret identity. Surrounded by scientific inventions and mechanical creatures of Victorian London, Charlotte trusts only her closest friends with the truth. Should her mysterious identity be revealed to the world, she would be executed by the Queen's court. Charlotte's father, private physician to Queen Victoria, is unaware that his seemingly timid daughter is the treasonous thief that he and Scotland Yard seek to capture. They believe they are looking for a "man" who is stealing medical supplies from Her Majesty to treat the poor of London. It's the same thief they accuse when two of the Queen's most valuable horses are stolen. A reward is placed on Charlotte's head.
Torn between her dutiful love for her father and the blossoming, confusing feelings she has for her daring ally, Peter, Charlotte sneaks out of Buckingham Palace with the help of her trusted friends. She struggles with the dangers of first love and how she fits into this complicated world. It’s up to Charlotte, Peter, Benjamin, Adam, Polly, and Jillian to sword fight through the gaslit streets of London and travel halfway around the world in an experimental device to locate the horses, bring the true criminal to justice, and to never reveal Charlotte's true identity.

I love a good steampunk novel wrapped in mystery and was delighted to read The Incredible Charlotte Sycamore and the Secret Traps by Kate Maddison. The author suggested and it is true, this will work as a standalone. For me, however, I think my connection to the characters would have been stronger had I first read, The Incredible Charlotte Sycamore. Featuring a young cast of characters who meddle in mysteries and dabble in steampunk with a sweet understated romance The Incredible Charlotte Sycamore and the Secret Traps was an engaging tale.

Five Caffeinated reasons to read The Incredible Charlotte Sycamore and the Secret Traps

  • If you love a good mystery set in Victorian London wrapped in steampunk you will enjoy this tale. Charlotte lives at Buckingham Palace with the Queen of London. Her father is Queen Victoria’s private physician.
  • The plot is engaging. Unbeknownst to the Queen and her father, Charlotte is the thief they are looking to hang. Medical supplies are missing, but Charlotte had a good reason for taking them. Call her “Robin Hood” for she uses them to help the poor. Poor Charlotte longs to be a Doctor, a feminist before her time; she is a clever girl and creates some of the coolest gadgets. When someone steals the Queen’s prized horses Scotland Yard and Charlotte’s father assume it is in same daring thief. Together with her maid and friends, Charlotte sets out to find the culprit.
  • There is a forbidden romance, which began, in the first novel. It is sweet and clean but complicated by an arranged engagement. This is a clean romance and will work for advanced Middle-Grade readers. I liken it to a Nancy Drew novel with the added bonus of geeky gadgets. Peter is a wonderful, and sweet. He tries to do the right thing, and accepts his place but cannot help stealing a few kisses.
  • The steampunk elements are unique from message sending devices, a robot, mechanical owls and a time-traveling device. I loved how clever and resourceful these little detectives were, and how they used these gadgets to assist in solving the case.
  • Twists and turns as Charlotte and her friends work to solve the case, and escape danger will keep the reader entertained. The case wrapped up nicely, while Charlotte and Peter’s fate remains unclear. It will be interesting to see what case they stumble upon next.

The Incredible Charlotte Sycamore and the Secret Traps was a fun, well-paced tale with just the right amount of mystery and romance to please young readers.

About Kate Maddison

USA TODAY bestselling and award-winning author Kate Maddison grew up with a love of books and movies. Before she discovered that she loved writing novels, she tried a variety of careers. She worked in the medical field, was a blueprint draftsperson, and design expert for a TV show. When Kate wrote her Young Adult stories about Charlotte Sycamore, her research included a trip to London to visit behind the scenes at Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle. In addition to writing YA, Kate has written over 20 romance novels, writing as Kate Bridges. On her time off, she loves hiking the nearby escarpment, photographing landscapes, or enjoying a night out with her family in the beautiful city of Toronto.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. She's a self-professed Whovian, as well as a Supernatural, and Sherlock Holmes junkie, She enjoys sharing books, tips, recipes and hosting the Sunday Post. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat...Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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66 Responses to “The Incredible Charlotte Sycamore and the Secret Traps by Kate Maddison”

    • kimbacaffeinate

      The gadgets were clever 🙂 I enjoy steampunk as it has elements of mystery and suspense

    • kimbacaffeinate

      This had more to do with social standings, and was very mild

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Completely Felicia is is marked young adult, but I honestly felt it was middle grade. Very clean with young heroine.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      No I agree and the woman doesn’t depict the young heroine.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      This was fun Ali, and perfect for young teens on your shopping list 🙂

  1. Rita

    Love the cover and the blurb, but it’s not my style of read. However my 6th grade granddaughter reads well above her level, teen reads without explicit sensual scenes, so I think this will be great for her–thanks for pointing it out.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      This is perfect for your granddaughter. It is clean and had it been classified as middle grade I would have rated it higher.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Thanks Nick, this is cute and reminds me of a young Nancy Drew with gadgets 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      It is gorgeous, and I know you like MG as well so I think you will enjoy this immensely

    • kimbacaffeinate

      This is high on mystery with gadgets it may be the place to dabble in it 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      LOL..this leans towards the MG section in the library, but has cool gadgets and a Nancy Drew heroine

  2. Berls

    I’ve been hit and miss with steam punk, but this one definitely has the makings of a hit! I just love that she’s the thief in a robin hood kind of way. I think I’ll go back to book 1 first though, since I really like to fully understand my characters. Thanks Kimba!

    Berls recently posted: Pinching Pennies | November 2014
    • kimbacaffeinate

      It was and this is perfect for younger teens looking to try steampunk

  3. Lupdilup

    This sound good Kimba. I have to agree with you too, I don’t think you can’t ever get the same experience reading a book in a series without having history with the character, and I think that’s why is so hard to blow it out the park with the first book in series.
    Thanks Kimba 🙂

    Lupdilup recently posted: Audiobooks I should have read instead
  4. Adriana

    Oh I didn’t realize this was a steampunk novel based on the summary. I’m actually looking to read more steampunks so I think I got lucky with your review (:
    I love Charlotte’s resolve to help the poor. She’s a character I can get behind especially being a feminist before her time.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      i hope you enjoy them. It is the perfect series to try a little steampunk