Mages & Mechanisms was written by Devin Harnois. This is a m/m romance novel set in a steampunk fantasy world. I picked up this book on Kindle Unlimited after seeing a few recommendations for it on Facebook.
Leander is a gifted craftsman, but business has not been very prosperous lately. He decides to hire a mage to bring his mechanical creations to life, and as soon as Jak arrives at the shop, it’s clear that there’s no one better suited for the job. Jak is quite different from anyone Leander has ever met before, and their odd partnership yields spectacular results. Their creations catch the eye of a wealthy aristocrat who offers a large lifechanging amount of money to build a mechanical dragon. They work so well together, but this would be their most ambitious project to date. And as if that weren’t challenging enough, Leander and Jak are finding it increasingly difficult to deny the attraction building between them.
I liked this book. Harnois does a wonderful job with worldbuilding, and for the most part, this is seamlessly inserted into the narrative. I found myself drawn to Jak and Leander’s world, with its class divides and its war with neighboring territories. The romance aspect builds slowly, relying on the “opposites attract” trope. They definitely have some great chemistry. Jak was sometimes a tad too erratic, but the way he was able to help Leader be a little less stuffy was very sweet. The characters speak in a very modern way, and this occasionally seemed at odds with the steampunk style setting, but the world and characters make up for any incongruity.
I would recommend Mages & Mechanisms. This is a fun story with a unique setting. The tone is fairly light, although naturally, characters are hiding Big Secrets. The ending is satisfactory, but it also sets up the potential for a sequel. I am looking forward to finding out what Harnois has planned for Jak and Leander.