Mar 09, 12
Read from March 08 to 09, 2012
I think this may be my new favorite steampunk novel. My only complaint about the book is that it ends! I wish I didn't have to wait for the next one. Harriet Tubman is one of my favorite real-life American heroes, but don't let the cover or the title of this book fool you. This is NOT a history book. This is a kickass steampunk, dark fantasy, alternate reality, supernatural action-adventure -- sort of a Pam Greer meets Orson Scott Card's "Alvin Maker" series. I won't spoil it for you, let me just say that the author drew me in slowly, then sprang a lot of twists and turns and WOW on me as I went along. Fast-paced, but not so fast that character development suffered.
I'd call it "Americana" steampunk, similar to John Claude Bemis' YA Clockwork Dark trilogy -- it's set during the Victorian Era but in the United States' Civil War period, not in England. I also wouldn't call it "Weird West," because everything happens east of the Mississippi, not on the frontier. And, unlike the Clockwork Dark series, this is NOT a book for kids. There's a lot of graphic violence, and some sexual references (not in regards to Harriet, though, which is awesome -- I like seeing a powerful female character who doesn't have to use sexuality to achieve her goals, and who is not a sexual object). But, yes, there are steam-powered things, dirigibles, goggles, and the stuff you'd expect in steampunk. READ IT.