Series: Clocktaur War #1
This was book one of a duology that was basically cut in half for length, and although the author did pick a natural breaking point, it felt like it had been written to be part of a longer work. It took me a really long time to get into it, and although I'm now thinking about picking up the sequel, I really could have dropped it for most of this book.
A group of condemned prisoners set out on a mission to learn more about an enemy's new weapon because their own city is losing the war. It's a cool concept, since the new weapon is an army of almost unstoppable artificial men called "clockwork boys" and there's a lot of really good banter. But it dragged a lot in places and I just couldn't get into the characters' mission. It was as if the mission was too...artificial? and over-explained? for me to really buy into it.