Review: "Steampunk" edited by Kelly Link and Gavin J. Grant

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I do enjoy a good short story anthology and Steampunk really fits the bill. It offers 14 terrific stories all in the Steampunk genre (although some of them are pretty loosely connected -- I'm looking at you Garth Nix!). And the quality of the stories are uniformly good.

So in this case, I’d like to mention a few of the standouts, starting with "The Last Ride of the Glory Girls" by Libba Bray.  In 37 short pages, she gives us a fully imagined world, set on some future planet which has a decidedly Western Steampunk vibe. Her heroine solves her problems with grit, ingenuity, and her gift for repairing clockwork mechanisms. I wouldn’t mind reading more set in this world.

Libba Bray is the author of a number of books, including A Great and Terrible BeautyThe Sweet Far Thing, and Rebel Angels.... all books which are now on my To Be Read list on the basis of this story. And she has one of the most annoying Flash driven websites I’ve run into in a long time.

In "Gethsemane" by Elizabeth Knox, we have a Caribbean flavoured adventure. Elizabeth Knox is the author of "The Vintner's Luck" and "Daylight". "Gethsemane" features a runaway caught up in earthshaking events.

"The Summer People" by Kelly Link manages to combine Faery-made clockworks with Appalachian pathos. This story feels like a window on a larger world, with many more possible stories.  As for me, I keep wondering what will happen when the Faery queen finishes molting.

"Steam Girl" by Dylan Horrocks. Dylan is a comic book artist and "Steam Girl" describes a vision of the world where a well written comic changes a boy’s view of himself and the world around him.

"Everything Amiable and Obliging" by Holly Black offers a Victorian romance where our heroine is troubled by the lack of free will experienced by robots.

"The Oracle Engine" by M.T. Anderson combines Roman Legions, historical figures, revenge and difference engines. M.T. Anderson is the author of Feed and his website has a delightful Steampunk feel.

The other authors in this collection include Cassandra Clare, Cory Doctorow, Shawn Cheng, Ysabeau S. Wilce, Delia Sherman, Garth Nix, Christopher Rowe, and Kathleen Jennings.

I received an electronic ARC for review purposes, now I’m going to have to wait impatiently for it to be published so I can buy a copy to share.

So, please check out Steampunk, recommended to you by WebGenii.

Steampunk edited by Kelly Link and Gavin J. Grant
Hardcover: 432 pages
Publisher: Candlewick (Oct 11 2011)
ISBN-10: 0763648434
ISBN-13: 978-0763648435

About WebGenii

WebGenii is a SF book nerd and all-round geek.


  1. Where's Mike²??