Monday, April 5, 2010

Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld

"Do you oil your war machines or do you feed them?"

Leviathan is the story of two very different characters at the outbreak of World War I. Prince Aleksander is the young son of Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his commoner wife, Sophie. Alek lives a life of privilege until his parents are assassinate and must run for his life. Deryn Sharp is a young girl who had disguised herself as a boy in order to enlist in the British Air Service. She and her older brother have been raised by their mother since the death of their father.

It is also the story of two warring sides, the "Darwinists", whose war machines are creatures from nature whose DNA has been manipulated to create new technology and the "Clankers", whose war machines are complex machines inspired by biology. Prince Alek is making his escape from Austria by piloting a stormwalker from Sarajevo to neutral Switzerland with his fencing tutor, master of mechaniks and a loyal crew if men. They are being chased by the Germans. Deryn, now known as Dylan, is rescused by the Leviathan, a whale airship, after her huxley is spooked by an incoming storm. They are on a secret mission to take a scientist and her cargo to Constantinople.

Our characters meet when the Leviathan is attacked by German clanker airplanes and is damaged. The ship goes down on a glacier near the castle ruins where Alek and his men are now hiding. Alek risks his life and discovery by trying to help the enemy get off the glacier an on their way.

Their story will be continued in October 2010 with Behemoth.

Check out Scott Westerfeld's blog.

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