mirrorshard: (The Book of Rainbows)
2010-10-14 05:48 pm

Lavie Tidhar - The Bookman

I read this last night, and you all have to know about this book. Here's an extract from my review, over at Cold Iron & Rowan-Wood:
The Bookman is set in an alternate Victorian era, and it’s intensely focused on the myths and legends of English literary geekdom. It has echoes of Alice Through The Looking Glass, Perdido Street Station, The Tempest, and The Eyre Affair, with a large chunk of Mayhew thrown in for good measure.

It’s set not long after 1887, several hundred years after an expedition to the Calibanic Isle results in the wholesale replacement of Britain’s ruling classes with giant poetry-obsessed lizards. Lord Shakespeare was the first of the great Poet-Prime Ministers; Moriarty is the most recent. And yes, that Moriarty. At the newly rebuilt Rose Theatre, Henry Irving performs his own adaptation of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner supported by Beerbohm Tree.


(Read more)

Published by Angry Robot, since January 2010 in the UK and October 2010 in the US.
mirrorshard: (Default)
2010-03-04 12:34 am
Entry tags:

Accidental steamfilkery

Ada, Ada,
Give me your blueprints, do!
I will trade ya
Helium, canvas, and glue!
It might be a risky project
But I for one won't OB-ject
For you'll look swell
Within the shell
Of a zeppelin built for two.
mirrorshard: (Default)
2010-02-13 04:16 pm
Entry tags:

Steampunked iPods

Of all the things that could possibly be steampunkéd, an iPod (or iPhone, iPad, iWhatever) is either the least appropriate ever or the most appropriate ever.

Discuss!
mirrorshard: (Default)
2009-05-09 12:36 am
Entry tags:

(no subject)

Further to the paperblogging in my con report, there's a really interesting essay on steampunk & colonialism here.

There are basically two steampunks - I'll call them the Morlock and Eloi trends. The first is about all the incredibly cool things the Sons of Martha can do, hacking metallurgy and thermodynamics and then decorating the results with random twiddly bits Because You Can, while the second is about poncing around in interesting costumes with shiny brass accessories, and generally being a Victorian Gentleman (or Ungentle Lady).

They can both be read as responses to a highly abstracted technological environment, either knowingly (punk versus goth - react to an ontological threat by spitting in its eye, or by dancing on the volcano) or unknowingly (two different and equally valid ways of Having Fun).

I think there's some perceived difference in the nature of that ontological threat, though. To the Morlock trend, it's out to destroy their agency - their ability to build, modify, control, or subvert the world around them. I'm less sure about the Eloi, though. Anyone care to venture an opinion?

(crossposted from DW)
mirrorshard: (Heart's Desire)
2009-05-09 12:01 am
Entry tags:

Steampunk

Further to the paperblogging in my con report, has a really interesting essay on steampunk & colonialism here.

There are basically two steampunks - I'll call them the Morlock and Eloi trends. The first is about all the incredibly cool things the Sons of Martha can do, hacking metallurgy and thermodynamics and then decorating the results with random twiddly bits Because You Can, while the second is about poncing around in interesting costumes with shiny brass accessories, and generally being a Victorian Gentleman (or Ungentle Lady).

They can both be read as responses to a highly abstracted technological environment, either knowingly (punk versus goth - react to an ontological threat by spitting in its eye, or by dancing on the volcano) or unknowingly (two different and equally valid ways of Having Fun).

I think there's some perceived difference in the nature of that ontological threat, though. To the Morlock trend, it's out to destroy their agency - their ability to build, modify, control, or subvert the world around them. I'm less sure about the Eloi, though. Anyone care to venture an opinion?

(crossposted from LJ - canonical version here.)
mirrorshard: (Portrait)
2009-04-15 01:27 pm

Eastercon report

It turns out that the best thing for my (usually rather unpleasant) travel sickness is milkshake. McDonald's thick milkshakes particularly, but others will do, and "Primo Coffee" (if I'm remembering the name right - found one at a random service station) does one which is rather tastier. Five hours on a coach is still not fun, but at least I met a couple of other London fans on the way up.

The Midland Hotel is lovely - delightful Victorian interiors, comfortable quiet rooms, friendly staff, and very functional showers. Not staying in the con hotel was a bit of a pain, but on the plus side it meant I got a decent amount of sleep and could get up in the mornings. The Midland coffee, incidentally, is shite, but the breakfast is otherwise v. good.
Friday - recreating history, and larping )Saturday )Sunday - paperblogging a steampunk panel )Monday - upcoming book rec, realistic fantasy, trithemy )
mirrorshard: (Sabalom Glitz)
2009-04-15 11:56 am

Eastercon report

It turns out that the best thing for my (usually rather unpleasant) travel sickness is milkshake. McDonald's thick milkshakes particularly, but others will do, and "Primo Coffee" (if I'm remembering the name right - found one at a random service station) does one which is rather tastier. Five hours on a coach is still not fun, but at least I met a couple of other London fans on the way up.

The Midland Hotel is lovely - delightful Victorian interiors, comfortable quiet rooms, friendly staff, and very functional showers. Not staying in the con hotel was a bit of a pain, but on the plus side it meant I got a decent amount of sleep and could get up in the mornings. The Midland coffee, incidentally, is shite, but the breakfast is otherwise v. good.
Friday - recreating history, and larping )Saturday )Sunday - paperblogging a steampunk panel )Monday - upcoming book rec, realistic fantasy, trithemy )