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Steampunk! An Anthology of Fantastically Rich and Strange Stories Hardcover – October 11, 2011
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Steampunk is hot at the moment in literature, art and fashion: This collection taps into the ethos without ever seeming topical or transient, thanks to contributions rich with much more than just steam and brass fittings. . . . An excellent collection, full of unexpected delights.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Veteran editors Link and Grant serve up a delicious mix of original stories from 14 skilled writers and artists...Chockful of gear-driven automatons, looming dirigibles, and wildly implausible time machines, these often baroque, intensely anachronistic tales should please steampunks of all ages.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Within these pages, there's a little something for everyone...This exceptional anthology does great service to the steampunk subgenre and will do much to further its audience.
—School Library Journal (starred review)
Editors Link and Gavin treat fans, old and new, to an array of fantastically rich stories in this polished, outstanding collection...the result is an anthology that is almost impossible to put down… From rebellious motorists to girl bandits, the characters in this imaginative collection shine, and there isn't a weak story in the mix; each one offers depth and delight.
—Booklist (starred review)
It is about time that steampunk short stories really got a focused and creative exploration in YA lit, and this anthology of fourteen pieces is an excellent start.
—Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (starred review)
In a genre based upon the re-imagining and reinvention of history, these authors manage to take their characters-and readers-to bold new frontiers.
—The Horn Book
All the stories are of consistent excellence, with surprises galore… Steampunk! will appeal to teen—and adults—for its originality of execution, variety of settings and the pure panache displayed by its 14 authors and artists.
—Shelf Awareness for Readers
Steampunk! is excellent anthology that showcases a fantastic genre. In fact, the majority of these stories are enthralling, and the characters are intriguing and usually easy to relate to. Overall, this is a rich and captivating collection.
—SLJ Teen (a SLJ newsletter)
With a host of various heroes and villains-"scientists and schoolgirls, fair folk and Romans, intergalactic bandits, Utopian revolutionaries, and intrepid orphans” among them-Steampunk! would be a fine starting point for anyone curious about this genre as these popular authors more than live up to their reputations.
Each story challenges the boundaries of the steampunk aesthetic, while standing on its own as thoughtful, insightful works of short fiction...For those not so pedagogically inclined, it’s got my vote for the best collection of steampunk I’ve seen so far, not only as steampunk tales, but as damn fine short stories in their own right.
—Tor.com (Barnes & Noble Bestseller's Picks)
The anthology is geared to a YA readership, but I think adults who are fans of steampunk will enjoy many (or all) of the tales presented here.
—GeekDad (a Wired blog)
Hot, hot, hot. Each of the stories is it's own unique little gem.
—Someday My Printz Will Come (SLJ blog)
This collection of short stories, including two graphic shorts, is a crazy cool compilation of the hybrid genre that is steampunk. The blending of historical and science fiction is flawless and the graphic shorts with detailed illustrations are a nice addition.
—Library Media Connection
From wish fulfillment to neo-noir, there's a story in this collection for everyone, newcomers and genre devotees alike.
—San Francisco Book Review
About the Author
Kelly Link and Gavin J. Grant are firm believers in the do-it-yourself ethos that powers the steampunk movement. They started a zine, founded an independent publishing house, own two letterpresses, and edited the fantasy half of THE YEAR'S BEST FANTASY & HORROR for five years. They live in western Massachusetts.
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"Steam Girl" is the story of an odd young man who meets an even stranger young woman. Both of them are social outcasts, she even more than he, and he finds himself fascinated by her leather pilot's helmet, her complete lack of concern for the opinions of others, and the notebook filled with pictures and diagrams she carries everywhere she goes. Once the awkward introductions are passed, they begin meeting regularly for lunch near the school trash incinerator where she regales him with stories of "Steam Girl", the daughter of a brave adventurer, their space ship the "Martian Rose", and their series of remarkable adventures on Mars and Venus. Her story lives within the broader story and buried within her story is yet another layer of narrative that does not become apparent until the very surprising end.
"Steam Girl" is the reason I gave this collection four stars instead of three. While the writing is as good as any other modern writing, none of the other tales in this collection approach the character depth, layered metaphors, and surprising creativity of "Steam Girl". This story would be worth $2.99 all on its own, leaving the rest of book as a mostly pleasant and sometimes odd bonus.
I'm a newbie to the steampunk sub-genre of science fiction & fantasy, but didn't find the vision of steam-powered, gear-driven "high tech" to be too much of a stretch. I was able to easily "suspend disbelief" and my imagination was engaged.
I thought that the writing was generally excellent, and that's a big part of what makes a believable story. Along with a good story line and good character development, of course. And most of the stories in this anthology seemed to have all of those elements.
After reading this book, I won't hesitate to get another anthology of stories in the steampunk genre.
These stories were pretty good. Some were definitely better than others, but overall I enjoyed the book. On to a regular novel for me!