31 January 2013

Favorite Book + Pairing: January 2013

I've been shamefully indolent with my book-related posts.  I used to at least cover my Year of Reading, but even that fell by the wayside in 2012.  Well, let's rectify this in 2013 by picking a favorite of the month!

I completed 6 books this month, which is pretty good for January.  Multiplied by 12, I could possibly read 72 books this year.  Also, most Januaries have not turned out well for my reading record.  It's surprising; you'd think it being an indoor month I'd go nuts. 

Turns out I'm already breaking the rules, because my 'book' this month is not one, but a trilogy, the Leviathan novels by Scott Westerfeld.  It was a rare foray into the world of Steampunk, even though these were not set in Victorian London; instead it was an alternative look at World War I.  Archduke Ferdinand and his wife do get assassinated, but in this story they are survived by one son, Alek, who, with a small party of loyal men, flee Austria and eventually find themselves on a British airship, the Leviathan.  This airship is actually alive, as the British empire are 'Darwinists', who make technology and weaponry out of genetically modified animals.  This makes them the natural enemy of Alek's 'Clanker' nation, who are joined also by the Germans.  He befriends a midshipman, 'Dylan' Sharp, who is actually Deryn Sharp, a girl who really likes to fly.  Adventure ensues.

This isn't necessarily my kind of reading, since there was enough technical detail to bring me close to boredom, but the premise and the imagination of the story kept me reading.  Well, obviously, since after Leviathan I wolfed down Behemoth and Goliath in quick succession.  Also, the cross dressing element reminded me a bit of a Shakespeare comedy, which I have no problem with at all.  And my compliments to Keith Thompson, whose drawings really helped bring the action to life, as well as all the crazy 'beasties'!

It's hard to pin down one kind of tea that would pair with these books, but you could do something like a British blend in a metallic teapot.  That should bring out some of the proper flavor.  Or just choose by whatever region the scene is set in at the moment.  Between the Ottoman Empire, Japan, Russia, and New York you have plenty of options!

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