Morgan F's Reviews > Leviathan

Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
May 01, 10

bookshelves: steampunk, young-adult, fantasy, sci-fi, nfa-library, adventure, 2000s, read-2010, multiple, good-sized
Read from April 26 to May 01, 2010

This book was beautiful. No, not in the writing, in the presentation. I lovvvvve pictures. I would stare at the illustrations, and kept turning back to look at the map inside the cover. Even the pages were nice and snow white- especially rare since I got this book at the library. Presentation wise, I give this book an A. However, things aren't that simple.

I like steampunk. It fascinates me, and if not for my extreme dislike for the feel of metal, I would love to live in a steampunk setting. Leviathan is no normal steampunk. It contains fabulous fabricated creatures right out of man's imagination. Messenger lizards, floating giant jellyfish, six-legged hydrogen sniffing dogs, and best of all- a humungous flying whale. That's right.

Scott Westerfeld's imagination will never cease to amaze me.

Then there is the more traditional eight-legged walkers and zepplins, you know the usual. These machines are created by the Clankers-Germany and Austria-Hungary, enemy of the Darwsinists- England and France. Both sides have reasons to distrust each other. The Clankers find the fabricated creatures unGodly and the Darwinists don't believe in the reliance on machines. Then World War I happens, and that's where the story starts.

Aleksander is a prince from Austria Hungary and is on the run from the people responsible for the murder of his parents. Deryn Sharp is a girl disguised as a soldier aboard the Leviathan (the aforementioned flying whale). Of course these two main characters are very different, but there is no story unless fate drags them together.

Then some action happens and the story ends openly for a sequel. I was a bit annoyed with that actually. I knew it was going to be a series, I just didn't expect such a cliffhanger. As for the action- there was plenty of it. It was confusing truthfully, and I would have been completley lost if not for the nifty illustrations.

While I preferred Alek as a character, Deryn's story was much more interesting. Both characters, however, where written very young. I couldn't picture them as 15 year olds, but rather as pre-teens around the age of 12. That just seemed to fit their actions better and it suited the middle-school level writing. For being actioned filled, it went slow for me. I just couldn't get the motivation to read it.

If you are expecting romance (as I was), prepare to be disappointed. There was hints of it, of course, but Alek doesn't even Deryn is a girl by the end. I have a feeling any romance in this book will be drawn out verrrrrry slowly.

Overall, its not what I expected. It was an adventure novel for middle-school boys essentially. The pictures were my favorite part. As was the concept of a flying whale with people walking around in it (kinda biblical, ain't it?).

I will most likely read the sequel and have only one demand....


3 likes · likeflag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Leviathan.
sign in »

Reading Progress

04/26/2010 page 60
13.64% "They really shouldn't let me read books with pictures. I get too easily distracted."
04/28/2010 page 200
45.45% "Barking spiders! They're inside a floating whale!" 1 comment
04/30/2010 page 347
78.86% "Nearly done, but I've been reading this book for a while now. Just can't get motivated to read it."

Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

dateDown_arrow    newest »

♦Jennifer♦ I'll be interested to know what you think about this one. I've been meaning to read it myself. ;)

Morgan F So far I've been distracted by how pretty the cover and illustrations are.

I'm like a squirrel that way.

oliviasbooks *Like a quirrel...* Cute!!

♦Jennifer♦ lol, pretty covers do that to me too. xD

message 5: by Kim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kim I like it when a book has pictures, I don't come across that many unless they are children's books. I often 'forget' what characters are supposed to look like so I end up with images in my head that probably don't match. These pictures were not only beautiful but very helpful. Steampunk is about the prettiest style there is IMO. The more visuals the better.

back to top