This is a Sci Fi experience read.
Published by Juno Books, I first saw the steampunk fantasy romance Clockwork Heart mentioned on The Book Smugglers' most excellent blog and then, when it made Thea's Top 10 books for 2008 I knew I had to sneak it into an amazon basket.
Clockwork Heart is Dru Pagliassotti's debut novel and was actually written in 2004 for NaNoWriMo - proof that the process can work! The lead character is Taya who works as an Icarus (essentially a metal-winged courier) who can travel freely across the city of Ondinium's sectors and mingle indiscriminately among its rigid caste structure. A daring mid-air wireferry rescue by Taya leads to involvement with two members of an Exhalted family - the handsome and charming Alister Forlore as well as his outcast clockmaker brother Cristof. She then becomes entangled in a web of terrorism, loyalty, murder, and secrets and gets closer
I described this book in my first sentence as a "steampunk fantasy romance" but I am not sure that really explains it. It is absolutely all those things but they are more of a background to the story itself and the interaction between the large cast of characters takes centre stage along with a murder-mystery. This book was thoroughly good fun and I look forward to the sequel. In notice that over on Dru's website is a pdf of the first chapter if you fancy a sneak peek.