Original HIATUS Action Adventure Drama Fantasy Historical School Life Slice of Life Supernatural
Renaissance Fantasy
In an alternate version of Renaissance Italy, where art, technology and science are seeing their greatest boom, random people all over the world are suddenly struck with "The Storm"; magical superpowers which all relate to combat, archery, art, sculpture and magical invention.

At first, it seems to Elena Lucciano that she's been given the worst of all abilities...but when she leaves home to join the Studios, like Academies for her kind, she will discover that sometimes powers are more than what they seem...
If you like this story and want more people to hear about it, you can vote for it on Top Web Fiction, without even having to register! Every vote helps, so I appreciate it!
  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Character Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Total Views :
  • 147,157
  • Average Views :
  • 2,073
  • Followers :
  • 262
  • Favorites :
  • 72
  • Ratings :
  • 28
  • Pages :
  • 737
Go to Table of Contents
Rate it
Inky Llama X

Inky Llama X

Dark Ink Mage

3rd Anniversary
Good Commenter (II)
Word Smith (V)
Toplist #2000
Group Leader (III)
I Am Ascending (VI)
Table of Contents
Chapter Name Release Date
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 1 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 2 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 3 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 4 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 5 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 6 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 7 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 8 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 9 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 10 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 11 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 12 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 13 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 14 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 15 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 16 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 17 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 18 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 19 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 20 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 21 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 22 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 23 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 24 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 25 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 26 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 27 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 28 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 29 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 30 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 31 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 32 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 33 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 34 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 35 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 36 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 37 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 38 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 39 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 40 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 41 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 42 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 43 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 44 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 45 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 46 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 47 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 48 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 49 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 50 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 51 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 52 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 53 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 54 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 55 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 56 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 57 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 58 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 59 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 60 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 61 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 62 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 63 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 64 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 65 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 66 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 67 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 68 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 69 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 70 ago
Twisted Cogs, Chapter 71 ago

Leave a review

  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

Thank God for character growth

At the time I write this, I am current with the story.  I’ve read the first two books and up to the last chapter Maddirose has written as of the date of this review.

I’m honestly not sure where to start.  I guess I will begin with my earliest impressions, then talk about the story, and end with where I’m at now.

The writing in this story is excellent.  It flows well, it’s easy to follow, and the dialogue is fairly natural (with a few exceptions I will come back to later).


Early Impressions:

I almost dropped the series about halfway through the first and second book and I’m glad I didn’t.  See, I really don’t like the MC.  She is a doormat and despite knowing she’s a doormat, she persists to be very passive.  Now, don’t let this fact get you down.  The MC’s growth eventually made  me start rooting for her, but it’s kind of inconsistent in that she get a massive dose of brains/power about midway through the second book. 

The MC was almost unbearably stupid for a long, long time.  What’s more, her Echo was almost always right, he was smart, and she NEVER LISTENED TO HIM!  It’s more permissible (in my mind) for a character to be stupid when he or she doesn’t have another person whose life depends on their continued survival /constantly/ giving them good advice.

By the third book, the MC is no no longer someone I wish would be killed off in the story.  Yes, I hated her that much in the first book.  I still hate her mother, but we are supposed to not like her so that is just good writing on Maddirose’s part.

Another aspect of the MC that I couldn’t stand early on in the story was her YA love interest(s).  Part of the problem, and part of the reason why I made the character score for my review lower is because the way she was portrayed was not consistent and simply didn’t make sense.

For example:  We know the MC is attractive.  She is described as having a nice bum and she gets hit on in various ways in her first week in the new city by a number of boys.  What’s more, nobody seems surprised that these boys, some of them very attractive and powerful, would be interested in her.  

Our MC is clueless about all of this and she’s a small town girl, yadda yadda.

The problem I had with that is that PEOPLE DON’T MAGICALLY BECOME MORE ATTRACTIVE WHEN THEY MOVE TO THE BIG CITY!  In fact, most times, moving to a large city has the /opposite/ effect on people.  They find out they were a big fish in a small pond in their home town.  So this whole YA romance subplot…  I’m not against YA or romance, but the way it was done here wasn’t my cup of tea.  I would not have taken points off for this except for the level of suspension of disbelief I had to push through.

Magic paintings I can buy hook, line, and sinker.  A small town girl finding out she’s ::gasp:: really pretty to all these hunky, rich guys in the city when she has been (presumably) ignored at home for 17 years… nope.

Other characters are all over the place in terms of being 3d.  Some are one-note.  Some exist solely to teach the MC various LIFE LESSONS ™, and as a voracious reader, I could see these characters coming from a mile away.  They were done pretty well, though.  I honestly enjoyed most of the interactions the MC had with the people she met.

My issue with the first book was how hard it was to understand who was who.  At times I had to go back to refresh my memory.  Eventually, this is non-issue anymore, and as a fellow writer, I can definitely see where Maddirose grew as a writer.  I almost just gave a high score for “character” and glossed over this, but I want to give the same level of feedback I hope I’ll get if Maddirose ever reads my story. 

Not surprisingly, my favorite character is Little One.  Her backstory is interesting, her motivations and history are believable… she’s just a very, very well written character.  However, I have to be honest that one of the reasons I may like Little One more than others in this story is because other than the MC, she’s really the only person we know anything about by the end of the second book.  

Details around other characters can be pretty sparse.  Like, summed up within two sentences sparse.  I honestly can’t think of a single character other than Little One and the MC (and her echo, of course) where we find out anything about their life before their inclusion in the story.

I give Maddirose the benefit of the doubt on this one.  I have a suspicion we will find out more about Emerald soon.


The World:

Let’s talk about the world building.

In a word, it’s creative and excellent.  Well, that’s two words, but bear with me.

The strong points of the Twisted Cogs series are its world building and magic system.  I was completely engrossed from the beginning of the story and this overwhelming strength of Maddirose was what made me buy the first books of the series in the first place, irritating MC or no.

Maddirose treats readers like intelligent people, never spelling out exposition and it’s… refreshing.  This series has been a joy to read from a mythos perspective, the first book in particular was excellent.  As readers, we are never given exposition in a clunky manner.  Instead, it comes up naturally in a way that doesn’t spoil the fact that we’re visiting with characters who already understand their own world.

The length of time it takes us to know what a Rhetor actually is serves as a great example here.

The magic system is varied and compelling.  There are different large classifications of magic, but within them, there is a great amount of variety per individuals.  I thought this was particularly well done.  The creative ways that students in the story could bend artistic magic towards combat was fun too.



My Current Thoughts: 

The MC has grown up in various ways.  I won’t mention them here because, *spoilers*.  However, I can honestly say that while I still don’t like her and I feel like her progression has been slow in some places and whiplash fast in others, she’s someone I don’t mind spending time with anymore.  Plus, her decisions as of late have been compelling as is her new motivation.

The Twisted Cogs is one of the best self published series I’ve read in a few years and that is saying something.  I read A LOT.  

I highly suggest everyone give this series a chance.  It may be for you, it may not.  But I can assure you that Maddirose’s style is smooth and grammar impeccable.

This was a fun read.  I’m glad I bought the books for my Kindle.  I will buy the next one when it comes out too.

  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

Side note to everyone about this story post by maddison its from https://twistedcogs.wordpress.com/ and i confirmed a long while ago that the person who is posting this here is in fact the same person from they website, so there is no plagiarism just reposting.

Otherwise I'm sorry all I can say at the moment is that  this is a great story.

  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

A beautifuly polished diamond


I think this story is written beautifully, and it makes my heart all fluttery after reading it.(Yes, with or without the mother~) The first chapter was very engaging and completely got me hook! I believe the chapter’s length were just right, not over excessive in information but you could feel that the writer was able to bring out what they really wanted to imply. Wonderfully done~

The excitement this story brought upon me was exactly just how I felt when I first played ‘Atelier Totori” and the latest chapter, “Rorona~”

The grammar is near perfect, except for a few missing commas and the like that I came along with.( not like I’m any better *_* )

If any of you would like to have a change of pace from the excessive machine leveling and overly gloomy protags, I suggest taking this one up for a read~


  • Overall Score

Read it on the author's blog; more chapters, very very good.

Tormented Sage
  • Overall Score
  • Style Score
  • Story Score
  • Grammar Score
  • Character Score

Best novel I've read in years, and I read more than I eat and sleep combined!

Simply put, each time I sit down and start reading this story I have to fight to put it down and go to bed, I keep thinking One more chapter... Okay one more chapter. (By this time I've gone to wordpress and keep up to date with new releases.)

The world you've created is refreshingly different and complex, yet entirely understandable. This magic rennaisance world feels real, and the details aren't noticeably lacking, shoved down our throats, or delivered in bland excripts.

It's been a long time since I've read chapters that fit together so well and flow so smoothly. (I have no doubt copious ammounts of editing and rewriting have gone into making it seem that effortless.) The story isn't rushed either so that goes a long way.

I do have to agree with some of the prior posts on the MC's personality being a doormat to begin with and groaningly oblivious, but if you think about how her mother raised her and how much of an outcast a child with an imaginary friend would be it becomes more and more believable. Many supporting roles do need some fleshing out as well but their thoughts and feelings come from character types that are relalistic and not just forced to meet a requirement from a plot perspective.

As for grammar... It's Alt+write (lol, grammar nazi joke). Seriously though, I can tell how much work you've put into each chapter and you should be proud of this fiction.

  • Overall Score

Amazing setting, crap MC/drama/other characters

I could only get through a dozen or so chapters but from what I read its a typical high-school drama plot starring a weak abused MC thinly veiled by a magic steampunk setting. Its quite frustrating because I really liked the setting and world building. Those parts were facinating but the crap MC and super cliche 'drama' absolutely killed the story for me.