Review: Behemoth

I received this book for free from ALA in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: BehemothBehemoth by Scott Westerfeld
Series: Leviathan #2
Published by Simon Pulse on October 5, 2010
Genres: Adventure, Alternate History, Historical, Steampunk
Pages: 481
Format: ARC
Source: ALA

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 airshipLeviathan, 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.

Scott Westerfeld writes some really strange stuff, some of which I love and totally want to high five him for. Others, though, I have been less impressed by. The Uglies series was interesting, but also highly frustrating to me. I loved his short story in Zombies vs. Unicorns and I really enjoyed Leviathan, the precursor to this book, although I was not sure whether that joy stemmed from Westerfeld’s talent or Alan Cummings’ as I listened to the audiobook version.

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!


One response to “Review: Behemoth”

  1. I loved this book, and the next one is pretty good too.

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