Saturday, 17 December 2011

Review: Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld


The Story:
Prince Aleksander, would-be heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, is on the run. His own people have turned on him. His title is worthless. All he has is a battletorn war machine and a loyal crew of men. Deryn Sharp is a commoner, disguised as a boy in the British Air Service. She's a brilliant airman. But her secret is in constant danger of being discovered. With World War I brewing, Alek and Deryn's paths cross in the most unexpected way…taking them on a fantastical, around-the-world adventure that will change both their lives forever. - From Goodreads

My Thoughts:
This book should get top ratings just for creativity alone. Although some of the ideas are biologically impossible regardless of the alternate history factor, I found that I could easily suspend disbelief because of the sheer genius of the creations. Leaving aside my crazy biology obsession, Leviathan was a great read in so many ways.The story was told in the alternating POV's of Alek and Deryn and whilst normally, I tend to prefer the voice of one character, both MC's voices were distinct and their stories equally enjoyable.
       One of my biggest fears when starting this book and based on the incredible cover was that I wouldn't be able to really understand the technology. This is always a big concern of mine when I read steampunk or sci-fi. Thankfully, the complex world building was conveyed quite well and I was able to enjoy the awesomeness of it all without being jarred back into reality by concepts I couldn't fathom. 
        Leviathan is light on the romance side but there's a hint of it towards the end which speaks of more to come later in the series. My one small issue with the book is that I felt like the author leaned very heavily on the side of the Darwinists and I would have liked for a more balanced portrayal of the opposing technologies.
        Overall, I really enjoyed reading Leviathan and look forward to continuing the series.


The Rating:
8.5/10



17 comments:

  1. Oh, you're just discovering this series! They're wonderful! The biology in it reminds me of Haarry Harrison's West of Eden, in which the dinosaurs survived andthe samller ones developed intelligence and started a culture based on biology and GM, so that even a cloak is a simple creature which you leave plugged into food when you get home and guns are lizards that stiffen as they mature; you have to feed them. Go read it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sorry for all the typos in the above!

    ReplyDelete
  3. K, Lan, I haven't read this one yet, though I do own it, but I'm hesitant because I wasn't THAT impressed with the Uglies series. Have you read that series? And if so, how does it compare?

    ReplyDelete
  4. I really need to read this book! It sounds really awesome and I love steampunk. Everybody who has read this seems to love it, so I must read it, too. Great review, Lan. If it can receive high praise from you, then it must be good.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have this on my Kindle waiting to be read! It sounds so good. thanks for the review.x

    ♥Ficbookreviews♥

    ReplyDelete
  6. Sue: I make typos all the time. Don't sweat it. The other series sounds interesting. I shall look it up.

    Jenny: No, I haven't read the Uglies series yet, but Westerfeld, like most male authors, writes the male POV better so I'm not surprised the Uglies wasn't your thing.

    Cathy: This is the best steampunk book I've read so far, hands down. If only because it's true steampunk and not a romance hiding behind a genre.

    Lalaine: You really should give this a go!

    ReplyDelete
  7. my god do I love alternating POV's.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Oh my gosh, YAY!! I'm so happy you liked this one, Lan! :) This one is on my TBR list just because it's a steampunk book (and I'm on my steampunk phase), so I'm giving a sigh of relief that you really enjoyed it! It sounds so interesting and I'm actually starting to fall in love with alternating POVs! Plus, you're definitely right about that cover -- it's AMAZING!

    Awesome review, Lan! I just bumped this one up on my list! :) <3

    ReplyDelete
  9. I have heard great things on this one for a while. Great review! and glad you enjoyed it, I haven't read it, but have been recommended it more than once. Maybe it is time to add to the list.

    Beth ^_^

    ReplyDelete
  10. I have always meant to read this, but never have. I'm going to have to move it further up my list of priorities! Awesome review!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I've been meaning to look into this series as well as his other paranormal one (I can't seem to recall what it's called at the moment) for quite a while now but for some reason haven't gotten around to it yet. I love science fiction, and I'm fascinated by all things steampunk. So this sounds like right up my ally. I really should make a note for myself to check it out next time I'm at my local library.

    Glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for the review!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Your comment about this leaning toward Darwinism actually increases my curiosity about this series. I always like seeing well thought out science in science fiction, even if it is very polarized. Great review!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Thank you for the review! I was hesitant to read this one at first but I think I should give it a try.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Great review!!!! I have this book (somewhere) and have been putting off reading it, maybe i should dig it out and try it. Like you i was worried that i wouldn't understand with all the word building.

    ReplyDelete
  15. So glad you liked it! Leviathan was my first steampunk and is definitely still a favorite. I love that I can read it aloud to my nine-and-seven year old boys, and they like it and understand it, but it's still interesting for ME. Always the sign of a great story. :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. I really want to start this series, but would you believe I haven't finished the Uglies series yet? But I love Scott Westerfeld's ideas and really want to read all his books.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Great Review Lan! I wondered about this book because I have heard so many good things about it, but really hadn't gotten too much into the Steampunk genre and consequently wasn't sure I'd like it. It will definitely go on my TBR list thanks to this review. :)

    ReplyDelete

I believe in comment karma. Comment and I shall return :)

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...