Author: Scott Westerfeld
Series: Leviathan #1
Date of UK Publications: 1st October 2009
Synopsis from Goodreads: Prince Aleksander, would-be heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, is on the run. His own people have turned on him. His title is worthless. All he has is a battletorn war machine and a loyal crew of men.
Deryn Sharp is a commoner, disguised as a boy in the British Air Service. She's a brilliant airman. But her secret is in constant danger of being discovered.
With World War I brewing, Alek and Deryn's paths cross in the most unexpected way…taking them on a fantastical, around-the-world adventure that will change both their lives forever.
I read the Uglies series by Scott Westerfeld a few years ago, and I loved it, so when I heard about Leviathan I was super excited, but I couldn't afford a shiny hardback at the time, and so I forgot about it. (Sorry! :L) So, when I went to the library for the first time in years, and saw it on the shelf, I decided that I had to read it, as I hoped it was as good as the Uglies series.
I liked the book, but unfortunately it didn't live up to my expectations. I knew I wasn't going to like the story as much as I did Uglies, but I was sure Westerfeld's writing would get me through, and it really did. I love his style, and even though the two series are SO different, they were both awesome, and I really enjoyed reading them. I love the way that Westerfeld creates an almost whole new language, and the way that each book has its own slang that you have to work out. In Uglies it was 'bubbly' and in Leviathan it was 'clart' and 'barking spiders'. I loved it.
The story was told in two parts for most of the book. Every two chapters it switches from Alek's point of view and Deryn's point of view. I much preferred Deryn's point of view, though I did enjoy Alek's. I think Deryn was more interesting for me, because I found her world a lot more interesting, with all the mutant animals acting as machines, and I thought that the whole idea of her hiding away on a ship as a boy was funny, and I was always wondering whether or not her secret wasn't going to get found out.
The plot was well thought out, and I was hooked the whole way through. There's something about people being on the run in books that I love. I'm not sure what it is, but maybe it's that the characters interact with each other a whole lot more because there isn't much they can do, and I can get to know them better, which is what I like, because then I care and can enjoy the story more. So, that part of the plot was good for me, and once they didn't have to hide any more, the plot really picked up and I couldn't stop reading.
Overall though, I only liked the book. The beginning was very slow, and while I did enjoy it, the story wasn't exactly to my tastes. Don't let that put you off though, I'm sure, if you're a fan of machinery and things like that, you'll enjoy it. And if, like me, you want to read it because you love Scott Westerfeld, then do, because once again, his awesome writing kept me reading non stop for hours. :D
I give it 3 Feet!
2011 100+ Reading Challenge #26