Barking spiders, am I sad to see this alternate world end! I really enjoyed the first two books of the series, and now with “Goliath” and the end of tBarking spiders, am I sad to see this alternate world end! I really enjoyed the first two books of the series, and now with “Goliath” and the end of the trilogy, I found myself pretty bummed when I reached the last page. I didn’t want to let that world go! Anyway, this was yet another fun adventure with the cast of both books so far, along with our newest character – Tesla, the mad scientist who really might have lost his marbles this time. Westerfeld does a fantastic job of wrapping things up and the illustrations were gorgeous (as usual!). And now I really want a Precipitous Loris, too!
I think my only complaint with the book as a whole is how suddenly it ended with Tesla’s exit stage left (though I won’t say how or why). The entire pace just kind of felt rushed toward the end, and though I understand why it became so fast, I found myself a bit disappointed with that – Westerfeld could have drawn that out a bit more, instead of the suddenness of how it all ended. Hence the lack of an extra .5 of a star. But the rest of the book was fabulous (I think the illustrated scene with Dr. Barlow’s Loris and the mustache literally had me laughing for at least five minutes straight!), and it was a pleasure to watch the characters growing under such pressure and circumstances.
I think Alek grew the most – from a helpless prince to a take-charge kind of guy, and Deryn makes second place by becoming kind of softened into someone who doesn’t always need to be in control, and allows Alek in for trust and to keep her secret. It’s rare that you see such delicate and slow character development in a trilogy, but Westerfeld really works it here, and it all works very well. I enjoyed all of their scenes together, especially the final one (which I won’t talk about, either – go read it yourself!). That in itself was a very satisfying conclusion, and I feel like I have no more real questions (aside from the one of “is there a WWII in this universe?”) lingering after I finished the book.
I think I also loved Westerfeld’s author’s note following the epilogue, about how this alternate world was so much luckier than ours had been, and how he wished Alek and Deryn had the ability to see into our timeline to watch everything play out. He’s a very thoughtful guy, and I’ve loved his writing style since the “Uglies” tetrology, and I love how he does his own commentary following the final book of whatever series he does talking about his characters and our own real world and how they compare/contrast. Frankly, he’s just an all around awesome guy.
So if you want some awesome steampunk action that will get your heart really racing, or if you want an electrifying experience, go read the last in the “Leviathan”, trilogy, “Goliath”. It’s definitely one of the best of 2011, and one of the best trilogies of the 2000s so far.
So. Can I have my Loris now?
(posted to goodreads, librarything, shelfari, and witchoftheatregoing.wordpress.com)...more
I tried reading 'Tantalize' first but it didn't hook me. This hooked me right away, and didn't let go the entire way. I can't wait for the next book!I tried reading 'Tantalize' first but it didn't hook me. This hooked me right away, and didn't let go the entire way. I can't wait for the next book! And I think I may give 'Tantalize' another try after all....more
Ugh, I love where this is going. If you're getting a little stuck in the first prequel series (not JACK, but just plain ol' Tokyo Ghoul), hang in therUgh, I love where this is going. If you're getting a little stuck in the first prequel series (not JACK, but just plain ol' Tokyo Ghoul), hang in there until the end. It makes all the difference for re:.
Not going to spoil anything but let's just say that we get to see a deeper look at Haise's personality and motivations, and who he REALLY is (though for those who read the original TG, I don't think it'll be a surprise). LOVED this, can't wait for more....more
Warning. If you have a past history of self-harm of any kind (including cutting/eating disorders), this book will most DEFINITELY be a trigger for youWarning. If you have a past history of self-harm of any kind (including cutting/eating disorders), this book will most DEFINITELY be a trigger for you.
That said, it's one of the best books I've ever read on the topic of self-harm within fiction aside from Francesca Lia Block's works that contain vivid recreations of such moments.
This book is a trigger, yes. But it's also a very healing book, and I can't recommend it more to those who have let go of harming themselves, or to those who are still fighting to get out from under its spell. This book talks about, very eloquently and competently, about what it's like to be in a self-harming girl's head and all of the constant second-by-second choices and the racing thoughts in daily life.
In terms of non-fiction fiction-type books that were published this year, this one easily wins best book of the year in that genre.
Yes, it's a painful read. It's a very painful read. But I found that once I finished it, all of the old wounds that had been opened were quieter than they'd been in years. I felt a little more at peace with my self-harming past than I had before opening the book.
Thank you for writing this book, Ms. Anderson. No doubt you'll help educate and heal a lot of hearts on this subject that's the elephant in the room for Western culture.
This is a gorgeous, wonderful book. I just have to say that right up front. It has all that I look for in this genre (alternate history/steampunk) – mThis is a gorgeous, wonderful book. I just have to say that right up front. It has all that I look for in this genre (alternate history/steampunk) – mad scientists, detectives, general paranormal activity, feisty females, and a little (but not too much) romance. Oh, and did I mention it also features a primitive version of Skynet?
When you throw all of the above mentioned features together and put it into an accessible YA package, you have my heart for life. This is a great adventure and relief to read – I was afraid that it might be too stereotypically chick-lit in terms of the romance area (considering the publisher being Harlequin and all), but Cross writes it in so subtly that you’re halfway in before you figure out what’s going on between Finley and Griff. And that itself is a breath of fresh air when you consider anything with romance in the realm of YA, especially as of late.
All of these elements are hard to get right by themselves, much less when you throw them together and make a delicious soup like this one.
And then there’s the mystery element – who is the machinist? What are his objectives? Cross subtly builds up the tension between the romance and the appearances of Jack Dandy (Jack the Ripper), along with trying to keep Finley’s head (and soul) together yet balances all of these things with the talent of someone from Cirque du Soleil. And the primitive version of Skynet robots killing (or horribly maiming) people! I enjoyed all aspects of this book, and can find no faults at all with it. And coming from me? I guess that’s high praise, seeing how picky I am and all.
Aside from the novella that’s just been released, I really hope that this isn’t the last full-length book set in Cross’ finely constructed ‘verse. I’ll be reviewing the novella as well, but I’ll still be waiting for news on a second book. More like squirming in my seat like a five year old, but you get the idea.
Want some steampunk that’s empowering for girls? Pick up “The Girl in the Steel Corset”. Afterwards, you’ll want a steel corset of your very own.
(crossposted to shelfari, librarything, and witchoftheatregoing.wordpress.com)...more