Sunday, October 23, 2011


If you haven't read Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld, stop reading now.  Tomorrow, first thing, take yourself to your nearest book provider (store, preferably local, or public or school library) and get Leviathan and  Behemoth.  Both are precursors to Goliath.  Then, you can come back and read this review.  However, after reaidng the first two books you won't need any urging to read the third.

Alek and Dylan are still on the airship/beast Leviathan in this final - sigh - installment of Westerfeld's steampunk trilogy.  Alek blames his family for the escalating War in Europe.  Worse than that, he is a Clanker on a Darwinist airbeast and he has too little to do.  Dylan, on the other hand, has way too much to do but, as a decorated Midshipman in the British airfleet, that is to be expected.

In Goliath, the Leviathan travels two thirds around the world, meeting up with such notables as the mad scientist, Tesla, the newspaper man, Randolph Hearst, and the Mexican revolutionary, Pancho Villa.  In New York, the world may very well come to an end if no one can stop Tesla from using his secret invention.

In the meantime, a whole slew of secrets are shared.  Alek must appear in public and pose for photographers to his distaste.  Dylan is plagued by a lady journalist and old friends from the Ottoman Empire show up just in the nick of time.

About a third of the way through the book, one of the many secrets in this book was uncovered and I worried that the action would bog down in interpersonal distrust and disappointment.  No worries!  There is so much action, especially of the "wing" walking far above the earth sort, that all that "Why didn't you tell me?" stuff gets washed right out of everyone's system.  (The airbeast has no wings to speak of, but the Darwinist airmen spend a whole lot of time outside the beast on its surface.)  And then there is the whole "world getting destroyed" thing to deal with.

My one disappointment in this book is that the true nature of the perspicacious lorises is never revealed.  OK, never fully revealed because the reader knows what these furry mind readers are up to, most of the time.  Could we have another book about perspicacious lorises, please?

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