Tuesday, July 10, 2012

MMGM: Audio Book Review of Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld

Okay, so before you go all glassy-eyed thinking I'm way behind on the times—which, let's face it, sometimes I am—humor me a bit and let me explain what's up. I am going ga-ga over Steampunk! How cool is it to mix historical revisionist fiction and science fiction in one story. It's way cool and I am trying to get my hands on every clockwork-gear-shifing-steam-puffing story I can get. If you have any recommendations, by all means lay it on me. (I'm even thinking of hitting the antique flee markets and creating some awesome Steampunky-looking art for myself.) Since my list is humungous I am using audio books to digest it faster. So here is my first audio book review and it won't be my last!

Speaking of audio...if you haven't been over to download the FREE chapter one podcast of my new book, Madison Morgan: When Dogs Blog be sure to check it out and let me know what you think!

The Story: It is the cusp of World War I, and all the European powers are arming up. The Austro-Hungarians and Germans have their Clankers, steam-driven iron machines loaded with guns and ammunition. The British Darwinists employ fabricated animals as their weaponry. The Leviathan is a living airship, the most formidable airbeast in the skies of Europe. Aleksandar Ferdinand, prince of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, is on the run. His own people have turned on him. His title is worthless. All he has is a battle-torn Stormwalker and a loyal crew of men. Deryn Sharp is a commoner, a girl 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 the Great War brewing, Alek's and Deryn's paths cross in the most unexpected way—taking them both aboard the Leviathan on a fantastical, around-the-world adventure. One that will change both their lives forever.

The Voice: Alan Cumming             

What I Thought: Loved it. Talk about incredible world building. Some have criticized it for being to laborious in the creating the world, too much description. I could see some Tweens and teens getting bogged down a bit, especially if they are reading it to themselves. Alan Cumming makes everything sound so much more interesting with his accents and dramatic voices. I'm looking forward to heading into the next two sequels, also narrated by the actor. If you're looking for a great, out of the world adventure with great characters this is a great series to get lost in. 

About The Author: Scott Westerfeld


Born: May 5, 1963
Dallas, Texas, USA

Family: Pamela, mother, from West, Texas
Lloyd, father, from Crawford, Texas (the same town where George W. Bush bought his fake ranch in 2000)
Wendy and Jackie, sisters (both older)

Married writer Justine Larbalestier in 2001.
No kids; no plans for kids.

We split our time between Sydney, Australia and New York City. (Summers only, thank you.)

Grew up in Texas, California, Connecticut
My dad was a computer programmer in the 1960s-70s, when computers were as big as a house and came with a bunch of people to make them do stuff. He worked for Univac in its various forms, and we lived in Houston for the Apollo missions, in California for Boeing, and Connecticut for submarines, etc.

Education: Arts Magnet High School, Dallas, Texas
Vassar Philosophy BA in 1985
New York University, graduate work in Performance Studies 1987-8

Writer: Samuel R. Delany
Book: I don’t know, okay? There are millions of them, you know.
But as a kid: Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White
Movie: Not as many as books, but I still don’t know. I think these kinds of questions are silly.

Jobs held
factory worker (making lead soldiers!)
substitute teacher
textbook editor
software designer
ghost writer

Six Interesting Facts
1. I just bought a telescope (80mm primary)
2. I am a vegetarian (for family reasons, mostly)
3. My book So Yesterday has been translated into Slovene.
4. Languages studied: Japanese, Spanish, and Latin. Languages fluent in: English.
5. Justine and I are bisummeral, moving between the hemispheres to avoid the deadly scourge of winter.
6. I never wear jeans. Never!

Basketball—we have season tickets to the WNBA’s Liberty, second row
Cricket—newly discovered in Australia
Tennis—played semi-competently , but not often enough

Mexican and Thai are my favorite
Italian is also quite excellent
Tetsuya’s is my favorite restaurant in Sydney, indeed, in the world
Otto is my current fave in NYC
Favorite meal: breakfast
Breakfast places of note
Sydney: Hopscotch, Single Origin
Dunedin: Bean Scene
New York: La Palapa, Counter
San Miguel de Allende: Nirvana

-From the website

Have you been on a Zeppelin?  


  1. I would LOVE to listen to Alan Cumming's voice!

  2. I love a good audio book- so this sounds interersting! I thought the author interview was fascinating. I don't know anyone that never wears jeans- so that is unique. I loved Charlotte's Web growing up too!


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