Adding a Bit of Steam

Hi, Sweeteas,

We have a couple of new steampunk books in our library. What’s steampunk? Wikipedia defines it as a sub-genre of speculative fiction that “involves an era or world where steam power is still widely used—usually the 19th century and often Victorian-era Britain—and incorporates prominent elements of either science fiction or fantasy.” Steampunk’s main sources of inspiration are the works of Jules Verne (20,000 Leagues under the Sea, A Journey to the Center of the Earth, etc.) and H.G. Wells (The Time Machine, The Invisible Man, etc.). Some examples of steampunk novels are: The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman, Airborn by Kenneth Oppel, Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld, and Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare.

The two new steampunk books in our library are Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger and The Dead Gentleman by Matthew Cody. They are both (hopefully!) first books in a series.

Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger ****

Mrs. Temminnick is desperate for her daughter, fourteen-year-old Sophronia, to become a proper lady, so she enrolls her in Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality. But what Mrs Temminick doesn’t know is that the academy will train Sophronia not just in the art of feminine elegance, but also in the art of espionage and murder (that’s what the “finishing” in this finishing academy means). Sophronia is of course not interested in learning how to to become an assassin, but she stays at the unusual  academy out of curiosity, practicality (some of the skills she’s being taught may prove useful), and a thirst for adventure. There are werewolves, vampires, flying highwaymen, zeppelins, mecanical creatures, fascinating inventions, intrigue, and a lot of humor in the steampunk world of Sophronia Temminick. Fun read!

The Dead Gentleman by Matthew Cody ****

The 1901 world of eleven-year-old steampunk explorer Tommy Learner collides with the modern world of twelve-year-old Jezebel Lemon. Together they must defeat the evil Dead Gentleman and save–not just planet Earth–but the entire universe. Classic steampunk gadgets abound in this novel, from mechanical weapons and creatures to a version of Jules Verne’s Nautilus. There’s also time and space travel, dinosaurs and vampires, and much more. Don’t miss this interesting and exciting read.

Happy November reading!

“Would you like an adventure now, or shall we have our tea first?” from Peter Pan

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