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Boneshaker by Cherie Priest


by Cherie Priest

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Clockwork Century (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,0601892,741 (3.59)379
  1. 130
    Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld (ahstrick)
  2. 60
    Dreadnought by Cherie Priest (iamiam)
    iamiam: "Boneshaker" precedes "Dreadnought" in the series by this author, plus their time-lines follow this order, but neither is dependent upon the other for comprehension of story.
  3. 50
    Airborn by Kenneth Oppel (jseger9000)
  4. 73
    The Affinity Bridge by George Mann (lorax)
    lorax: Steampunk with zombies.
  5. 40
    Clementine by Cherie Priest (7hir7een)
    7hir7een: If you liked the character of Croggon Hainey, and the atmosphere of Priest's alternate history, you'll like this read. It's short, but if you can find it, it's worth it! Be aware, the print books are hard to find, so check out other formats.
  6. 30
    The Inexplicables by Cherie Priest (PghDragonMan)
    PghDragonMan: A very creepy Seattle is home to may people . . . and things.
  7. 30
    Changeless by Gail Carriger (GirlMisanthrope)
  8. 30
    Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi (clif_hiker)
  9. 30
    The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan (ahstrick, andreablythe)
  10. 20
    Karen Memory by Elizabeth Bear (reconditereader)
    reconditereader: Similar setting, similar level of butt-kicking awesomeness.
  11. 10
    Odd Men Out by Matt Betts (yarmando)
    yarmando: Steampunk + zombies
  12. 00
    World War Z by Max Brooks (sturlington)
  13. 22
    The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Volume 1 by Alan Moore (kraaivrouw)
  14. 00
    The Family Trade by Charles Stross (AlanPoulter)
    AlanPoulter: Both are first series novels, set in alternate America's, with conflicts involving mixes of old/new technologies.
  15. 00
    Lightborn by Tricia Sullivan (AlanPoulter)
    AlanPoulter: Both are rattling adventure yarns but with a common flaw of poorly developed 'worlds'
  16. 12
    Dead Reckoning by Mercedes Lackey (SunnySD)
  17. 01
    Hollowland by Amanda Hocking (clif_hiker)
    clif_hiker: YA zombie stories...

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» See also 379 mentions

English (186)  Polish (1)  German (1)  French (1)  All languages (189)
Showing 1-5 of 186 (next | show all)
I know I'm missing something, and maybe I should have gone more than a third through this little adventure, but I was getting zero enjoyment out of this. I'm not in the mood to be patient and if your characters really must insist on speculating about what if General Jackson had died in Chancellorsville, and other ham-fisted Alternate History neon lights, I really must insist on calling bullshit. Sure, this is a goggle snapper written for teenagers with, why not, zombies, but Priest's writing lacks subtlety. You can't have your characters just say what's different about their timeline. Like, in hindsight, things would be so much better if John Kerry had lost. ( )
  ManWithAnAgenda | Feb 18, 2019 |
I noted the positive press regarding Boneshaker when it first came out, and I had meant to get around to reading it at some point. Almost a decade later, I tipped my daughter off to it, since she was developing an interest in steampunk. She read it and liked it a lot, and so insisted that I read it in my turn. Set in the late 19th century, it concerns a woman pursuing her runaway son into a walled-off Seattle, Washington full of poison gas and zombies.

It was all right, but I don't know that I'll go on to the sequels. The basic adventure story, exploring the ruined city and meeting its denizens, was just fine. Airship battles are fun, but I'm not terribly entertained by zombie swarms. The plot resolution with its final reveal was pretty satisfying, and made sense out of some of the protagonist's earlier behavior. While the author apologizes for/defends her historical and geographic inaccuracies in an appended note, nevertheless I think that the story might offer extra enjoyment for those more familiar with the 21st-century city of Seattle.

I got the impression that the story as originally drafted may have started more in media res, but that the preliminary exposition was grafted on in order to accommodate a less sophisticated readership. On the other hand, the whole book has more than a little YA about it, and that may just have been the plan all along. I guess I can see why this book is considered exemplary in its sub-genre, but it wasn't such a stand-out read for me.
5 vote paradoxosalpha | Dec 6, 2018 |
Abandoned @ 21 %

I just don't care. The writing and characters are just bland, bland, bland, and I don't care. ( )
  natcontrary | May 21, 2018 |
This was my first experience with Priest's work, and it was a pleasure. I found it to be a brilliantly imagined steampunk novel set during an extended Civil War, and in Seattle, a catastrophic event has brought the Blight upon the city, which causes the dead to walk. The story focuses on a mother seeking to save her son, whom has charged off into the city to find out about his father. Along the way she encounters air pirates, zombie rotters, and the other people who choose to brave the Blight, living beneath the ground and in sealed vaults for protection. However, its also a mystery, for the son's quest will lead them both on a journey to answer the questions raised by the Blight, and to learn once and for all the real history of the experiment that started it all.

The book is well written, the action is tight, and it's just a hell of a lot of fun to read. The only complaint I have is that the last chapter seemed a little flat to me, almost an unnecessary epilogue, that answers none of the questions that still remain, but without actually building any sort of wonderment or cliffhanger. This is the only reason that I'm only doing four stars. ( )
  andrlik | Apr 24, 2018 |
Very surprised I didn't enjoy this. I though Ezekiel was quite possibly the most irritating character I have read in a really long time. I get that he is a teenager, but some of the things he said were just so blatantly stupid it felt like the author was very awkwardly trying to get the reader to understand something (I'm sure there's a word or two to describe what I mean, but whatever). I find this odd, because I read "Maplecroft" by this author and adored it. So this was definitely not my favorite.

I still think I'll try to read the others in the series, because I find steampunk fascinating. And I've heard the second book is really good. ( )
  gossamerchild88 | Mar 30, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 186 (next | show all)
Overall, Priest has created a terrific story that will please endless science fiction fans in search of a thrill.
added by sdobie | editSF Site, Katherine Petersen (Jan 15, 2010)
Priest’s latest, very simply rocks: It’s not only the steampunk adventure you’ve been waiting for, it’s the steampunk adventure you can give to friends of yours who wonder what the hell’s up with all those Victorian overcoats and goggles.
added by lampbane | editWhatever, John Scalzi (Oct 13, 2009)
It's full of buckle and has swash to spare, and the characters are likable and the prose is fun. This is a hoot from start to finish, pure mad adventure.
added by lampbane | editBoing Boing, Cory Doctorow (Sep 29, 2009)

» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Cherie Priestprimary authorall editionscalculated
Foster, JonCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Reading, KateNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wheaton, WilNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In this age of invention the science of arms has made great progress. In fact, the most remarkable inventions have been made since the prolonged wars of Europe in the early part of the century, and the short Italian campaign of France in 1859 served to illustrate how great a power the engines of destruction can exert.

-- Thomas P. Kettell, History of the Great Rebellion. From its commencement its close, giving an account of its origin, The Secession of the Southern States, and the Formation of the Confederate Government, the concentration of the Military and Financial resources of the federal government, the development of its vast power, the raising, organizing, and equipping of the contending armies and navies; lucid, vivid, and accurate descriptions of battles and bombardments, sieges and surrender of forts, captured batteries, etc., etc.; the immense financial resources and comprehensive measures of the government, the enthusiasm and patriotic contributions of the people, together with sketches of the lives of all the eminent statesmen and military and naval commanders, with a full and complete index. From Official Sources (1862)
This one's for Team Seattle --
Mark Henry, Caitlin Kittredge,
Richelle Mead, and Kat Richardson--
for they are the heart and soul of this place.
First words
Unpaved, uneven trails pretended to be roads; they tied the nation's coasts together like laces holding a boot, binding it with crossed strings and crossed fingers.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Inventor Leviticus Blue creates a machine that accidentally decimates Seattle's banking district and uncovers a vein of Blight Gas that turns everyone who breathes it into the living dead. Sixteen years later Briar, Blue's widow, lives in the poor neighborhood outside the wall that's been built around the uninhabitable city. Life is tough with a ruined reputation, but she and her teenage son Ezekiel are surviving--until Zeke impetuously decides that he must reclaim his father's name from the clutches of history.… (more)

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