Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Uglies was my first Scott Westerfeld experience, and it was good; good enough for me to bring Leviathan along on my iPhone for the long drive from Cranford, NJ to Gloucester, MA. It was so much fun! Audiobook bonus: the reader does this German accent that makes everything Alek (Prince Aleksander) says sound hilarious.
Leviathan is a steampunk adventure without random mush and an obsession with corsets. Our main characters are Prince Aleksander, heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary and Daryn Sharp. The Prince is on the run from his own people and is forced to hide-out in a creepy castle in the middle of nowhere with his cranky fencing instructor and a pack of men who have remained loyal to him. Daryn is a girl who loves to fly, but knows she will never realize her dream as a girl, so she disguises herself as a boy and joins the British Air Service.
The British Air Service's fleet in this revisionist WWI tale consists of vessels that are composed of organic materials. For Battlestar Galactica fans, they're sort of like Cylon spacecraft. (Yes, I have watched that show. Don't judge.) The British Air Service in Leviathan serves the interests of a group called The Darwinists. All of their technology and weaponry is based on life forms and adaptation to the environment they anticipate fighting in.
The only problem with this book is you probably should just pick up the sequel when you get Leviathan because you aren't going to want to stop.
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