Steam Queen by Jack Hessey
The Steam Queen is a steampunk novel that follows eighteen year old anti-hero Erica, who is not your usual hero. She has an extreme fear of dirt and a compulsive need to punish those who wrong her, sometimes going to such extremes that her father can no longer protect her. His solution: sign her up to mercenary team the Steam Queens in the hope that Erica will mature.
Erica does not start off well in the group as she immediately finds fault with all the members of the team, particularly the twins that man the cannon. After her first mission with the Steam Queens goes well they are drafted in to help the girl general, General Cuvelier fight against diesel fan Kaiser Eisenburg. When the battle turns into a full blown war Erica comes to the unsettling conclusion that the leaders of both sides are raving mad.
Worst of all Erica realised that she had gotten herself caught up in the middle of a war between an insane man and a silly little girl playing soldier. A dangerous combination if ever there was one.
When she discovers the horrifying rule of the Kaiser and the mad ambitions of the General she puts her personal fears and punishments on hold to try and stop the thousands of deaths that will inevitably occur if both these leaders accomplish what they want.
Steam Queen first got my attention due to the unusual and memorable main character. Erica is a wonderfully refreshing change, a character you would love to hate but by the end of the book you begrudgingly start to like her. Jack Hessey does a good job at getting the reader to understand Erica’s deranged mindset. In particular, her extreme phobia of dirt is brought across quite well and with Erica what you see is what you get. She doesn’t hide what she is but at the same time that is all she is and sometimes you hope for a few extra layers to Erica.
The storyline has several little plot twists and unexpected revelations which add well to the story. There are some clever little ploys that help to add to the frustration of the characters that anyone can relate to; incompetent leaders, bullies, the person who never shuts up.
Steam Queen was a good book that was an enjoyable read but I found it easy to put down when I needed to. I found Erica to be an interesting hero but not one that I could easily relate to. This could be due to her mentality being one that I am strongly opposed to, others may find her easier to click with, but she was very interesting none-the-less.
Steam Queen is only available as an e-book and this will appeal to readers, particularly those with iPad, Kindle and Sony e-readers. I would recommend Steam Queen to anyone who is just starting out in steampunk although I would have to also be honest and say that there are much better and more intriguing steampunk books and graphic novels out there, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen being an example.
This Steam Queen book review was written by Anna Sheldrick
Have you read Steam Queen?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
Steam Queen reader reviews
Sarah from Southwell
I read Steam Queen a few days ago and thought that it was a really fun book. I loved Erica, thought she was a really unique character. She was different than most YA characters in that she has plenty of negative traits and really shouldn't be all that likeable but somehow, she works. Main fault I found with the book was the length, I thought Jack Hessey could have expanded some scenes to add a bit of depth to it and also, some of the secondary characters were a little undeveloped. Still, I thought Steam Queen was a fun little read. Well worth checking out in my opinion.
7.8/10 from 2 reviews
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
Perdido Street Station
The metropolis of New Crobuzon sprawls at the centre of its own bewildering world. Humans and mutants and arcane races throng the gloom beneath its chimneys, where the rive...
The Anubis Gates
Brendan Doyle is a twentieth-century English professor who travels back to 1810 London to attend a lecture given by English romantic poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge. This is a...
The City and the City
When the body of a murdered woman is found in the extraordinary, decaying city of Besźel, somewhere at the edge of Europe, it looks like a routine case for Inspector T...
The Difference Engine
William Gibson and Bruce Sterling
The computer age has arrived a century ahead of time with Charles Babbage's perfection of his Analytical Engine. The Industrial Revolution, supercharged by the developm...
A colossal fantasy of incredible diversity and spellbinding imagination. A human cargo bound for servitude in exile... A pirate city hauled across the oceans... A hidden mi...
The Aeronaut's Windlass
Since time immemorial, the Spires have sheltered humanity, towering for miles over the mist-shrouded surface of the world. Within their halls, aristocratic houses have rule...
It is a time of revolts and revolutions, conflict and intrigue. New Crobuzon is being ripped apart from without and within. War with the shadowy city-state of Tesh and riot...
The Mensch with No Name
Edward M Erdelac
The Merkabah Rider continues his journey across the American Southwest of 1880 in search of the renegade teacher who destroyed his mystic Jewish order in the second volume ...
The Shadow Conspiracy
1816, the year without a summer. A group of geniuses descended on Geneva and, in an attempt to save the body and mind of Lord Byron, perform dreadful and forbidden experime...
The Weavers of Saramyr
An evil that comes from within the empire's centre, a sect of magicians close to the throne intent on killing any child born with magical powers. But now the empress ha...
The Rise of the Automated Aristocrats
Sir Richard Francis Burton's expedition has returned from the future, bringing with it knowledge of technologies that must remain secret if history is to proceed as it ...
A young clockmaker's apprentice, who is visited by the Archangel Gabriel. He is told that he must take the Key Perilous and rewind the Mainspring of the Earth. It is ru...
The Good, the Bad and the Infernal
One day every hundred years, a town appears, its location and character different every time. It is home to the greatest miracle a man could imagine: a doorway to Heaven it...
The Curious Case of the Clockwork Man
A clockwork man is abandoned in Trafalgar Square. A ghost displays a craving for diamonds. A lost aristocrat returns ten years after being lost at sea and instigates riots ...
Sea of Ghosts
When the last of the Gravediggers, an elite imperial infiltration unit, are disbanded and hunted down by the emperor they once served, munitions expert Colonel Thomas Grang...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages:
Best of 2016
Journey to the Black City
On an Earth that is very much like our own, the civilizations of ancient man have been crushed; the giant glaciers that cover the northern part of the globe continue, even now...
Books of the Month
A selection of books - old and new alike - that were a joy to read.
The Pirate Isles are united under Drake Morrass’ flag, but the war has only just begun. There’s still a long way to go before he’s able to call himself King, and traitors at every turn. The Five Kingdoms and Sarth have assembled a fleet of ships unlike any the world has ever seen and they intend to purge the Pirate Isles once a...
Ian C Esslemont
After the disappointments of Li Heng, Dancer and Kellanved wash up on a small insignificant island named Malaz. Immediately, of course, Kellanved plans to take it over. To ...
Age of Swords
Michael J Sullivan
Raithe, the God Killer, may have started the rebellion by killing a Fhrey, but long-standing enmities dividing the Rhunes make it all but impossible to unite against the co...
A Time of Dread
The Ben-Elim, a race of warrior angels, once vanquished a mighty demon horde. Now they rule the Banished lands. But their dominion is brutally enforced and their ancient en...
The Last Dog on Earth
Adrian J Walker
Every dog has its day... And for Lineker, a happy go lucky mongrel from Peckham, the day the world ends is his: finally a chance to prove to his owner just how loyal he can...
The Shadow Crucible
Taking humanity back to their primordial beliefs and fears, Estella confronts Mikhail’s faith by revealing the true horror of the lucrative trade in human souls. All ...
The Dog Stars
Hig, bereaved and traumatised after global disaster, has three things to live for - his dog Jasper, his aggressive but helpful neighbour, and his Cessna aeroplane. He's...