Interested in learning more about steampunk? Well, what better way is there to learn than by reading! After giving you a very brief overview of what steampunk is, IMPACT would like to present you with some cool steampunk fiction, including some of the best steampunk books. Last time, we left you by mentioning that both H.G. Wells and Jules Verne contributed to the steampunk genre through their respective works The Time Machine and Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.
All five of these steampunk novels are fairly well known, either in the steampunk community and genre, or just in general. In fact, the last three were all developed into movies. And whether you knew it or not when you read them, all of these books have elements of steampunk in them that make them extremely unique and fun to read! All of them are also available on Amazon.
Boneshaker by Cherie Priest – Set in an alternate history version of Seattle, Boneshaker gets its namesake from the Bone-Shaking Drill Engine that the Russians use in the race for Klondike gold. Things go awry, however, and the test run destroys several blocks of downtown Seattle and unearthing a gas that turns humans into zombies. Sixteen years later, a teenage boy is out to find out what has become of the city — and to prove his father’s innocence in the accident.
Infernal Devices by K. W. Jeter – Sometime-musician George has very little talent for clockwork, but when a shadowy figure tries to steal an old device from the premises of his father’s clock shop, George finds himself embroiled in a mystery of time travel.
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen by Alan Moore – (Technically a comic, but still important!) The comic that inspired the movie, this The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen combines the superhero genre with past literary and cultural ideals, all played out in London and featuring some famous characters (i.e. Mina Harker, Captain Nemo, Dr. Jekyll, etc.).
The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman – The first of Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy, The Golden Compass is set in a universe parallel to ours, featuring the journey of Lyra Belacqua to the far north in search of her missing friend, Roger Parslow, and her imprisoned father, Lord Asriel, who has been conducting experiments with a mysterious substance known as “Dust”.
The Prestige by Christopher Priest – Another book that later became a movie (and a Christopher Nolan one at that!), in 1878, two young stage magicians begin to clash in an enthralling and dangerous rivalry. From this point on, both of them are out to ruin and expose the others acts and tricks. The story follows them to the peak of their careers, where their rivalry will have horrible consequences for both of them as they use misdirection and dark science in an attempt to best each other.
Do you have any good steampunk books that you’ve read that are particularly interesting or stand out? Stay tuned to IMPACT for some more cool seampunk stuff coming up — including steampunk in film, like The Wild Wild West.