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Ganymede (The Clockwork Century) Paperback – September 27, 2011

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Editorial Reviews


An intimate, well-crafted portrait of a nurse on a mission adds depth to this exceptional Civil War steampunk thriller. (Publishers Weekly, starred review, on Dreadnought)

Dreadnought offers plenty of fun: fast-paced battle scenes, thundering locomotives and the gem of the book, its heroine. Vivid, believable and endearingly stubborn, she's an enjoyable companion for those taking the time to read a book which challenges the notion that steampunk must assume Victorian attitudes with its goggles and corsets. (Seattle Times)

Boneshaker is without a doubt Cherie Priest's breakthrough work: this hollering, stamping, crackling thing is the best fun you'll have with a book all year. (Warren Ellis)

A propulsive, breathless read, an action movie that tears across the country, stopping just long enough to take snapshots of the race and gender politics of the time, to put a human face on history. (The Stranger on Dreadnought)

About the Author

Cherie Priest is the author of Dreadnought and Boneshaker, which was nominated for a Nebula and Hugo Award, won the Locus Award for best science-fiction novel, and was named Steampunk Book of the Year by She is also the author of the near-contemporary fantasy Fathom, and she debuted to great acclaim with Four and Twenty Blackbirds, Wings to the Kingdom, and Not Flesh Nor Feathers, a trilogy of Southern Gothic ghost stories featuring heroine Eden Moore. Born in Tampa, Florida, Priest earned her master's in rhetoric at the University of Tennessee. She lives in Seattle, Washington, with her husband, Aric, and a fat black cat named Spain.

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Product Details

  • Series: The Clockwork Century (Book 3)
  • Paperback: 349 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; Original edition (September 27, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780765329462
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765329462
  • ASIN: 0765329468
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #561,308 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Cherie Priest is the author of more than a dozen books, including the steampunk pulp adventures Dreadnought, Clementine, Ganymede, and Boneshaker. Boneshaker was nominated for both the Hugo Award and the Nebula Award; it was a PNBA Award winner, and winner of the Locus Award for Best Science Fiction Novel. Cherie also wrote Fathom and the Eden Moore series from Tor (Macmillan), Bloodshot and Hellbent for Bantam, and three novellas published by Subterranean Press. In addition to all of the above, she is a newly minted member of the Wild Cards Consortium - and her first foray into George R. R. Martin's superhero universe, Fort Freak (for which she wrote the frame story), debuted in 2011. Cherie's short stories and nonfiction articles have appeared in such fine publications as Weird Tales, Subterranean Magazine, Publishers Weekly, The Living Dead 2, and the Thackeray T. Lambshead Cabinet of Curiosities. She presently lives in Chattanooga, TN, with her husband, a fluffy young dog, and a fat black cat.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By C. Barnes on October 17, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I'm a big fan of the Clockwork Century world. I don't get caught up in the little differences between its history and geography and reality. Boneshaker is one of my favorite books, and I was glued to Clementine and Dreadnought. I was very excited for Ganymede.

When I finished reading I was still excited. It was a good, fast read. But, as I reflected on it in the following days I realized it was a very "safe" story. In many circumstances when the author has a chance to introduce conflict or some other form of Murphy's law, she simply didn't. I equate it to watching a suspenseful movie... and your thinking to yourself (or yelling at the television), "No! Don't go in there!". This book is written such that they didn't "go in there". The main characters in the book rarely encountered adversity, always made the right choices, and the story concluded. It would have so much more interesting of they had "gone in there".

In addition to the safe story line, there are many characters introduced (or carried over from previous books) that simply don't matter. There is a Voodoo Queen that is described as foreboding and dangerous, but you don't get any of that. A new Texian general comes to town, but doesn't really make any problems. A life-long friend is introduced and then forgotten. And a familiar Texas Ranger enters the story only to do nothing (but maybe set up another book - which I'll eagerly read).

Now, the story does give us a little more of Briar Wilkes and son, you get some more from Mr. Swakhammer and daughter, and you find out that post-Boneshaker Seattle is the same, but different.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Grimjack13 on October 21, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've been reading all of Cheri Priest's Steampunk stories and so far this is one best yet. I didn't really care for Boneshaker but Clementine brought me back and onward to Dreadnought and Ganymede. I originally bought Boneshaker for my wife because I thought it was a steampunk/zombie story, she is into the whole zombie/slash/anything genre. She's weird, but I'll keep her.

Anyway Ganymede and the rest of Clockwork Century storyline is quite a bit more than that. The alternate world she is creating and its opposing views, revised history and different characters are intriguing. Yankees, Confederates, swamp guerilla fighters, heart of gold prostitutes, air pirates, Texicans and zombies, it's all cool and it's not in England. Nothing against the English but Jules Verne was French and The Wild Wild West was an American pre-steampunk production. Cheri Priest's works are different and so far I've liked them. The stories seem to be getting stronger at least in the extended American Civil War arena that she is crafting. I also like the fact that her version of steampunk is mostly technical as opposed to magical.

I do agree with C. Barnes as to the lack of character conflicts. Everybody seems to get along just a little too well. The story was too "safe" as far as character interactions. I do like the characters; she has definitely crafted her characters well and gives them their own "voice." But I think their "voice" would be portrayed stronger with more adversity and interpersonal friction to address. A giant white man and his crew are accepted into the inner circle of a group of rough and tumble black guerilla fighters, surrounded by white enemies like Johnnie Rebs and Texicans, just a little too easily. There was just not enough friction between the characters.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 7, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Of all the many things I admire and enjoy about Ms. Priest writing, the foremost is how each of her character has their own voice. Ganymede is the newest volume in her Clockwork Century series of interconnected books set on a North American continent where the Civil War has lasted for 20 some years. This one concerns the attempt to get a prototype submersible from Lake Pontchartrain to the Union blockade. It features Andan Cly who was first introduce in Boneshaker and Josephine Early a free woman of color who runs a ladies boarding house and is working to free New Orleans from the Republic of Texas' occupation forces. This books has airships, pirates, spies, Texas rangers, Chinese drug lords,prostitute, giant catfishes and zombies. It is American steam punk at its best and I recommend it and its companions book without reservation as great reading fun.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Laurie A. Brown VINE VOICE on May 22, 2013
Format: Paperback
This book in the Clockwork Century series has air pirate Andan Cly thinking about quitting the business and settling down in Seattle to be near Briar Wilkes, now sheriff of the broken city. He intends to quit running the Blight gas to the people that make it into the horribly damaging drug Sap. To do this, he must have his airship refitted into a regular cargo ship, not possible in Seattle. By coincidence, he is offered two jobs at the same time- one from the new head of the city to make a supply run, and another, mysterious one, from an ex-lover, Josephine, in New Orleans. He can take care of all three of these things in one trip! Of course, he doesn't know what Josephine's job entails, but that's not something to worry him too much.

Once down in New Orleans he finds that the Texians are holding the city under martial law. It seems they are looking for a machine- a machine that could end the Civil War (which has been going on for over 20 years in this universe). This machine, the Ganymede of the title, is an `underwater airship', and the people who attempt to run it keep dying in the attempt. This is where Cly comes in; Josephine thinks that an airship pilot will have better luck with it than a boat captain. Of course, because of the Texians, the Ganymede must be moved in complete secrecy, which doesn't make it easy to work out any problems in running it.

Unlike the other books in this series, Ganymede doesn't move along with breakneck speed. There is much less action; almost none until near the end of the book, when there is a great battle scene on and in the water. There is a lot of suspense: will they get caught by the Texians? By zombies? Will the Ganymede kill them, too, or will they figure out how to pilot it safely? Why are there zombies down in New Orleans, anyway, when they originated in Seattle via exposure to the Blight gas? The pace is very different from the other Clockwork Century books, but different isn't a bad thing.
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