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Clockwork Century
5 : Fiddlehead

by Cherie Priest
Jan 1, 2015
6 Hours
Ages 13+
Young ex-slave Gideon Bardsley is a brilliant inventor, but the job is less glamorous than one might think, especially since the assassination attempts started. Worse yet, they're trying to destroy his greatest achievement: a calculating engine called Fiddlehead, which provides undeniable proof of something awful enough to destroy the world. Both man and machine are at risk from forces conspiring to keep the Civil War going and the money flowing.

Bardsley has no choice but to ask his patron, former president Abraham Lincoln, for help. Lincoln retired from leading the country after an attempt on his life, but is quite interested in Bardsley’s immense data-processing capacities, confident that if people have the facts, they'll see reason and urge the government to end the war. Lincoln must keep Bardsley safe until he can finish his research, so he calls on his old private security staff to protect Gideon and his data.

Maria “Belle” Boyd was a retired Confederate spy, until she got a life-changing job offer from the Pinkerton Detective Agency. Pinkerton respects her work, despite reservations about her lingering Southern loyalties. But it’s precisely those loyalties that let her go into Confederate territory to figure out who might be targeting Bardsley. Maria is a good detective, but with spies from both camps gunning for her, can even the notorious Belle Boyd hold the greedy warhawks at bay?

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Director & Cast

Director Colleen Delany
Starring Colleen Delany, Kimberly Gilbert, Thomas Keegan, KenYatta Rogers, Steve Wannall, Chris Davenport, Scott Graham, Andy Clemence, Katy Carkuff, Eric Messner, Rebecca Sheir, Emlyn McFarland, Terence Aselford, Jacob Yeh, Julie-Ann Elliott, Eric Singdahlsen, Margie Tomrpos, Patrick Bussink, Christopher Graybill, Jefferson Russell, Tim Getman, Doug V. Brown, Elizabeth Jernigan, David Coyne, Joel Santner, Richard Cutting, Nick DePinto, Steve Carpenter, David Harris, James Konicek, Dawn Ursula,Thomas Penny,Laura Harris, Michael Glenn, Michael John Casey, Delores King Williams, Tim Pabon and Susan Lynskey
Book Adapted for GraphicAudio by Doug Krentzlin
Dialogue Editors Thomas Hogan
Sound Designers Thomas Hogan
Original Theme Music Thomas Hogan
Additional Original Music Thomas Hogan
Cover Illustrator Jahbulani Ori
Producers Richard Rohan and Duane Beeman
Executive Producer Anji Cornette


A must have series for Steampunk & Zombie fans alike! by Kevin L (Posted on 12/19/2018)
The last book of the "Clockwork Century" saga wraps things up in a nice tight package, with characters from the previous books and new ones alike appearing (or, in some cases, _not_ appearing) to take part in the finale.

It is late 1879, and the War Between the States is still raging. Lincoln stepped down as President after a near-successful assassination attempt in '65; he is a major character in this one. So is Ulysses S. Grant, a third-term President who discovers a huge plot taking place right under his nose.

Gideon Bardsley, a brilliant inventor, has created a calculating machine called the Fiddlehead. The Fiddlehead assesses probabilities, and has determined that, if the War isn't ended and quickly, the result will be moot because of a plague that has crept up on both sides will end it for them. If you've read the previous novels in the series, you can probably guess that the plague is walking dead people, the result of the mysterious yellow gas that destroyed a small town called Seattle.

But someone will kill to keep Bardsley's message silenced. It's hard enough for him to be taken seriously, because he's an ex-slave; when he's falsely accused of murder, but then there's Maria Boyd, an ex-Southern spy now working for the Pinkertons out of Chicago. Lincoln hires the Pinkertons to watch his house and extends his protection to Bardsley, and Boyd is sent to help. Her mission will take her back across the Mason-Dixon line.

All these threads, and a few more, come together in a pair of explosive finales that will either end the war, or prolong it forever. And there are those who prefer the latter option...

Priest writes cleanly and clearly, creates believable characters (given the somewhat unbelievable venue in which they are set), and keeps the story moving well.
Fiddle Head by Linda (Posted on 5/25/2016)
The Civil war is going on to long for the people. They are trying to stop the war early.
fiddlehead by Linda (Posted on 12/22/2015)
there are people conspiring's on both side's to keep the war going.
The Fiddle Plays The Final Song by Chris (Posted on 7/29/2015)
A great final story that was meant to sum up overarching world story line (the war / zombies). This book took place with a once again great alternate version of history and steampunk. The war still raging on, word of the zombies has risen the ranks the president himself, and all must decide what to do about the war with the least amount of casualties, but there are those on the inside conspiring.
This final story has great action and suspense, all questions are answered; But I wish we got more of an update/ending on the original characters. It was concluded but wasn't completely closed; a 'you know what will happen, no need to explain it' sort of vibe, which isn't a bad thing.
Graphic Audio's doesn't fail their amazing job of providing great sound effects, voices and descriptions of the steampunk machinery/settings to really conclude this great series.

(PS: The Clockwork Century Series was continued with "Jacaranda" (being #6): but it takes place 20 years after Fiddlehead & is unrelated to the original story arc)
not over yet ? by Lee (Posted on 5/23/2015)
love the story's i know there will be more it has to be. this book is good
Wishing for more. by Gene (Posted on 4/28/2015)
Sure wish there was more on everyone out west...It just doesn't feel like it's over yet.
Over all too soon. by Jared (Posted on 2/25/2015)
And so we come to the conclusion (or as far as I can tell it is) of the Clockwork Century, with questions answered but left with the feeling that it was somehow rushed. No offense to Cherie Priest, but I think we could have done with a couple more books of just straight up adventures of our established heroes. Still, I was highly impressed by the voice work of the presidents and former presidents, and was caught at work more than once paying attention to the books and not my machines.

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