Okay, for all you Steampunk noobs, here’s the deal. Steampunk is a sub-genre of science-fiction or fantasy that showed up on the scene in the late ’80s and early ’90s. The phrase, Steampunk, refers to writing that is set in a time period where steam power is still widely used, usually the 19th century, such as Victorian era England. They very often include fantastical or real technological developments, like computers, occurring at an earlier point in history and may include alternate-history decisions that are presented in an idealized way.
Westerfeld’s book, Leviathan, is the first in a trilogy that tells the alternate history of World War I. In this world the Central Powers, referred to as Clankers, are known by their use of mechanized war machines. This is in contrast to the Entente Powers, known as Darwinists, who are characterized by their use of living creatures that have evolved specifically for warfare. The main character is the teenage son of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand and the girl of his dreams, a cross-dressing Scottish girl.
So, feel like giving it a try? Then check out the newest book, Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld, author of the popular futuristic series, Uglies.