A Seattle Times Best Book of 2012When Catherine Gehrig, a museum conservator in London, falls into grief after her loverâ€™s sudden death, her boss gives her a special project. She will bring back to â€ślifeâ€ť a nineteenth-century mechanical bird. As she begins to piece the automaton together, Catherine also uncovers the diaries of Henry Brandling, who, more than a hundred years prior, had commissioned the bird for his very ill son. Catherine finds resonance and comfort in Henryâ€™s story. But it is the mechanical creature itself, in its uncanny imitation of life, that will link these two people across a century. Through the clockwork bird, Henry and Catherine will confront the mysteries of creation, the power of human invention, and the bodyâ€™s astonishing chemistry of love and feeling.