What I’m Reading

Currently, I’m working my way through Boneshaker by Cherie Priest. Good harrowing zombie steampunk fun.

I really enjoy steampunk. Its aesthetic is immediately inviting, balancing the fashions and architecture of an amazingly elegant (IMHO) period with a technology that is both more wondrous and more graspable (physically and mentally) than the modern day real world. Indeed, the continuing miniaturization of gadgetry makes imagining a realistic – but visually pleasing – future increasingly difficult. What does a cyberpunk world hold and how can an artist make it both believable (at the current pace of technology) and somehow convey what it’s like to exist in a nano-tech controlled world where so much of what makes life fantastical by today’s standards would be invisible to the naked eye?

Even though I’ve been aware of steampunk since before it made the leap from a concept to a subculture, I’ve never actually drawn anything steampunk. Sure, some of Magic’s self-described ‘mage-punk’ comes close but that’s still a fantasy world of wizards and goblins. How much fun to jump back to a world of stiff collars and even stiffer upper lips!

And one slice of (admittedly far flung fantastical) steampunk I avidly follow is the wonderful Girl Genius comic book by Phil & Kaja Foglio, two of the original Magic artists (with exceptional coloring by Cheyenne Wright).

Okay, back to reading and recuperating.

~ by Pete Venters on November 13, 2010.

6 Responses to “What I’m Reading”

  1. Zombie steampunk? That sounds interesting.

    If you enjoy zombie books, I suggest reading Day by Day Armageddon by J.L. Bourne. He’s a product of the internet generation but once you get past the initial annoyance, it’s quite good.
    Also, http://www.permutatedpress.com

  2. Er, that’s http://www.permutedpress.com

  3. @Syphon, when it comes to zombie books, check out World War Z. Brilliant globe-spanning horror.

  4. ‘Boneshaker’ is excellent! Priest has another book set in the same world called ‘Clementine’ that is newly out. I haven’t gotten hold of it yet, but I’m dying to do so.

  5. I just finished reading a sequel (of sorts) to Boneshaker, Dreadnought. It’s also damn fine. Not as immediately gripping as Boneshaker, but in some strange way, somehow more satisfying in the end.

    Definitely looking forward to Clementine now that I’ve heard about it.

    (Also: the book design of both Boneshaker and Dreadnought are no small part of the charm, I think. The yellowish paper, the sepia-tone text and slightly uneven colouring really help establish and maintain the steampunk feel.

  6. I know, Pete. WWZ is pretty cool. But very americocentric. And I really dislike that aspect.

    I’ve got part 2 of Day by Day Armageddon ordered. I can’t wait. 🙂

    What about movies with zombies, Pete?

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