Maybe this was how you stayed sane in wartime: a handful of noble deeds amid the chaos.

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Title: Leviathan
Author: Scott Westerfeld
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Year of Publication: 2009
Awards: ALA 2012 Notable Children’s Book, ALA/YALSA 2012 Best Books for Young Adults, School Library Journal Best Books of 2009

Prince Alek is whisked away in the middle of the night by his father’s most trusted men.  A war is coming and the young prince finds himself caught in the crosshairs.  Deryn is a fifteen year old girl disguising herself as a boy to make her mark in the British Air Service.  A Clanker and a Darwinist, the teens are thrown together in an unlikely alliance to escape the Germans and begin an even greater adventure.

Leviathan is the first book in the fantastic trilogy that combines steampunk and biological fabrications to create a novel setting for a re-imagined history of World World I. Beautifully illustrated by Keith Thompson, the rich language is paralleled with intricate black and white illustrations.

“Leviathan is as much about possible futures as alternate pasts.  It looks ahead to when machines will look like living creatures, and living creatures can be fabricated like machines.  And yet the setting also recalls an earlier time in which the world was divided into aristocrats and commoners, and women in most countries couldn’t join the armed forces– or even vote.

That’s the nature of steampunk, blending future and past.”

Scott Westerfeld

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