Five Favorite Steampunk Stories
Posted by Laurel Wanrow
Today, I’d like to welcome guest blogger Cecilia Dominic. Cecilia is a fellow steampunk author, with her novel Eros Element releasing August 25th.
Thanks so much for having me today, Laurel! It’s always fun to go back and think about books I’ve enjoyed.
I first found out about steampunk when my friend and fellow author James Bassett suggested I submit a story to his and Stephen Antczak’s anthology Clockwork Fairy Tales. I did, and they rejected it, but I was hooked. I started reading more of the genre and stumbled into Gail Carriger’s Parasol Protectorate series. I went from hooked to in love. I’ve since read other steampunk works, and here are some of my favorites, in no particular order.
The first book in the Parasol Protectorate series embodies many things I love about the steampunk genre – a feisty misfit heroine who prefers matters of the head to those of the heart, mystery, urban fantasy elements, and interesting devices. The heroine Alexia is also half-Italian, which is a fun twist, and she is so romantically disadvantaged it’s fun to see how she manages to stumble into love. There’s also a Scottish werewolf. Yes, I’m all about the Scottish werewolves. I’ve read books two and three of the series, and they continue to be very entertaining.
The Iron Duke by Meljean Brook
I will admit to a bias against zombies that made me pick this one up with trepidation even though it had been highly recommended by a friend. This particular friend loves my books, so she must have good taste, right? This is one of those stories that you’ll think about long after it’s over, both because of the heroine – another half-breed misfit – and the well-drawn secondary characters. It’s darker than Soulless, but still a great story, and the zombies aren’t that prominent. I haven’t read further in the series but intend to, especially since the second book is about treasure hunter Archimedes Fox and airship captain Yasmeen, two of those great secondary characters. Just added it to my wish list.
I found this one because I picked up the first part for free as part of some promotion, and of course I had to continue all the way through the second book, The Clockwork Wolf. In this fascinating alternate history setting, the United States lost the Revolutionary War, so Victorian mores have a stranglehold on the land. The heroine, Kit, is a private investigator who doesn’t believe in magic but is being stalked by a deathmage. The way Viehl handles the love triangle between Kit, the deathmage, and the sweet police inspector is very clever. This was one of those cases where I found myself reading a steamy scene in a public place and really hoping no one else was looking at my phone. Write the third book, please, Ms.Viehl. Like, now.
The Clockwork Scarab by Colleen Gleason (Young Adult)
Sure, Sherlock Holmes has been through many retellings by now, and there’s no Benedict Cumberbatch to be found in this version, but this is a really fun book. Mina Holmes, niece of Sherlock, and Evaline Stoker, sister of Bram, have to team up to solve why London’s young society ladies are disappearing. The contrast between Mina’s calm, rational (of course) personality and Evaline’s brash, impulsive one creates enjoyable tension, and there are some sweet love interests to keep things even more interesting. The second one is waiting for me on my Kindle as a reward for when I’m done with my next project.
Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare (Young Adult)
I picked this one up, read the first chapter, and put it down with a meh. So what is it doing on this list? Two words: Will Herondale. Yeah, I feel like *such* a cougar because he’s like, seventeen, but O.M.G. His tragedy makes him older in spirit. At least that’s what I’m telling myself. I re-read the book, made it through the first part, found Will, and my interest and the story picked up rapidly from there. The Shadowhunters are a mysterious organization dedicated to hunting evil entities. It sounds intimidating, and they do have some mad fighting skills, but at its heart, it’s a group of barely organized misfits in a big old castle, which makes it fun. Heroine Tessa Gray falls in with them and falls for Shadowhunter Will, who is under a curse. And Jem, who has his own problems. And I won’t spoil anything for you, but this is the best YA love triangle I’ve read in a long time. I’ve read the second book, and the third is waiting on my Kindle for me.
Hopefully that’s enough to get you started, and I hope that you’ll fall in love with the genre like I did. Up next in my queue – The Unraveling, of course! Also, please come meet and chat with Laurel at my virtual release party on Facebook August 25 at 6:30.
About Eros Element, Aether Psychics Book One
If love is the ivy, secrets are the poison.
After enduring heartbreak at the hands of a dishonest woman, Edward Bailey lives according to scientific principles of structure and predictability. Just the thought of stepping outside his strict routine raises his anxiety.
Adding to his discomfort is Iris McTavish, who appears at his school’s faculty meeting in place of her world-famous archeologist father. Worse, the two of them are to pose as Grand Tourists while they search for an element that will help harness the power of aether.
Iris jumps at the opportunity to prove her worth as a scholar—and avoid an unwanted marriage proposal—while hiding the truth of her father’s whereabouts. If her secret gets out, the house of McTavish will fall into ruin.
Quite unexpectedly, Edward and Iris discover a growing attraction as their journey takes them to Paris and Rome, where betrayal, blackmail and outright theft threaten to destroy what could be a revolutionary discovery—and break their hearts.
Warning: Allergen alert! This book was produced in a facility that handles copious amounts of wine, tea and baked goods. May contain one or more of the following: a spirited heroine, a quirky hero, clever banter, interesting facts both made-up and historical, and lots of secrets. It is, however, gluten free.
Buy Eros Element at:
If you’d like to check out a free steampunk story by Cecilia, you can read it here.
About the Author
Cecilia Dominic wrote her first story when she was two years old and has always had a much more interesting life inside her head than outside of it. She became a clinical psychologist because she’s fascinated by people and their stories, but she couldn’t stop writing fiction. The first draft of her dissertation, while not fiction, was still criticized by her major professor for being written in too entertaining a style. She made it through graduate school and got her PhD, started her own practice, and by day, she helps people cure their insomnia without using medication. By night, she blogs about wine and writes fiction she hopes will keep her readers turning the pages all night. Yes, she recognizes the conflict of interest between her two careers, so she writes and blogs under a pen name. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia with one husband and two cats, which, she’s been told, is a good number of each. She also enjoys putting her psychological expertise to use helping other authors through her Characters on the Couch blog post series.
Find Cecilia Here:
About Laurel WanrowFantasy romance tuned to the magic of the land.
Posted on August 18, 2015, in Favorite Authors, Steampunk fantasy romance and tagged #newrelease, Cecilia Dominic, Eros Element, new release, Steampunk, steampunk books. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.