The behemoth is the fiercest creature in the British navy. It can swallow enemy battleships with one bite. The Darwinists will need it, now that they are at war with the Clanker powers. Deryn is a girl posing as a boy in the British Air Service, and Alek is the heir to an empire posing as a commoner. Finally together aboard the airship Leviathan, they hope to bring the war to a halt. But when disaster strikes the Leviathan's peacekeeping mission, they find themselves alone and hunted in enemy territory. Alek and Deryn will need great skill, new allies, and brave hearts to face what's ahead.
Behemoth (Leviathan book 2)
I laughed out loud so many times I can't even count, Westerfeld's books are filled with the kind of humor I love, unfortunately when I try to tell others they never get it because they don't know the whole story, it is still enjoyable to me however, and I go back and read it quite a few times.
And despite risking the chance of sounding petty, I can't wait for Deryn and Alek to get together, though things have been complicated a lot from this book, I am eager for it to happen in the next book!
The Darwinists and the Clanker ideas are really clever. I loved how that was the part of the war, and it made the two sides much more different. You would think that fabricated creatures would be frowned upon by the English who created them. But the idea of this is amazing, and much more useful than machines that need oil and parts to run. It may go against the laws of nature, but it also makes nature more powerful. This is such an awesome and brilliant concept that may be key to the future, as fabrication is starting to happen.
I think my favorite character is Deryn. I love how she risked her neck to do what she loved most, flying. She is different to other girls at that time, which made her even more amazing. I loved how Lilit (I think that is how you spell it) liked her, and I laughed at the part where she kissed her.
I loved this book, and everyone who reads this would understand why, it is so good. Please read it if you want to live. I cannot wait for Tuesday when I can borrow the next one!
However, never have I seen the genre done quite as well, or as imaginatively as Scott Westerfeld does in his Leviathan trilogy.
In Behemoth, the second of the series, we travel away from Britain and Austria, where the first book is set, and find ourselves in early twentieth century Turkey, Constantinople to be precise. Here the plot really takes off. While Leviathan set the scene for our two protagonists and gave them the push that threw them together, Behemoth drops them into a revolution.
What I love about this series is that there are two main characters – Deryn, a girl masquerading as a boy so as to maintain her midshipman status aboard an airship, and Alek, secret heir to the throne of Austria in hiding from those who want to kill him. Both have equal shares of the story, and both have secrets withheld from the other. Hearing each of their voices keeps the story fresh, and also means it is a book both boys and girls can love.
The other thing that makes this series truly unique is the technologies. In this parallel history, the world is divided into two different technology groups – the Clankers; people who use mechanized vehicles in true Steampunk style; and the Darwinists; people who use fabricated beasts as airships and weapons. This is really fun, because it allows you to decide which side you are on. Would you rather sail the skies in an airship that is a living whale, or thunder across the earth in a mechanical robot?
I love the plot progression in Behemoth, it’s exciting and unpredictable, and doesn’t feel forced. The characters develop hugely in this book, and you can’t help but love the way they interact with each other. I find that Scott Westerfeld’s writing style is greatly improved from that of the Uglies series, and while not hugely unique in terms of style he holds onto your attention as few author’s can.
Cool technology, interesting characters, witty humour, and some interesting history, these books have everything. Coupled with the amazing artwork by Keith Thompson, Behemoth and the rest of the Leviathan series are a must read for anyone looking for a truly good adventure.
So tell me, do you oil your war machines, or do you feed them?
Having finished Behemoth, read on old-fashioned paper, I have to say that I really do like some of Westerfeld's stuff. His writing may not especially impress me, but he does have a crazy mind full of fantastic ideas. Of course, some of those ideas don't pan out (or so I've heard about what happens in Peeps). Anyway, I'm still totally digging this completely ridiculous and delightful revisionist history.
One nice thing about not having the audiobook, even if I do miss Cummings' vocal stylings, was getting to see the illustrations. They're really awesome and definitely a nice spice for the eyes (if you've read the book, you know what I did there).
Unlike the Uglies series, I also really like the characters, except for Dr. Barlow, who I still find annoying. Alek is a bit stodgy, but generally a nice kid, suffering only from his rather unique upbringing. Dylan is an awesome girl, who does not let mooning over a boy stop her from being a badass; she can moon and be a badass at the same time. My new favorite character, without a doubt, is Bovril, a perceptive new beastie.
If you enjoyed the first installment, you will not be disappointed by this one, unless you wanted more than five pages of the title beastie. Next up is the final book in the series. I am so ready!