Tuesday, November 06, 2012

"Steampunk" the book

"STEAMPUNK: An Illustrated History of Fantastical Fiction, Fanciful Film and Other Victorian Visions by Brian J. Robb | Published November 17 by Voyageur Press"

I received a review copy of this book at my office yesterday. Working at a newspaper as I do, I get many opportunities to review books, but I turn almost all of them down because:

1. It's a POD and probably not very good.

2. I'm not qualified to judge the subject.

3. I don't have time.

4. I'm just not interested.

BUT when I received a news release about this book, my ears pricked up. Here is a subject I'm interested in, and I'm qualified to render an opinion on. So I said sure, send the book along.

It looks very impressive, at first glance. Obviously I'm not going to be able to start reading it today - being Election Day an all that - but I should be able to schedule it for the paper the weekend of its official release.

Meanwhile, here is the publisher's own news release:


STEAMPUNK is simultaneously a literary movement, ultra-hip subculture and burgeoning cottage industry and has become the most influential new genre to emerge from the late 20th century. It influences the look and aesthetic in multiple media and genres, be it movies, literature and music, from rock to dance to alternative music . Steampunk’s influence is fast-growing, alive in fantasy novels, films, arts and crafts, fashion, comic books, music, computer games, even architecture.

STEAMPUNK: An Illustrated History of Fantastical Fiction, Fanciful Film and Other Victorian Visions is the definitive book on the writers, film-makers, artisans and aesthetes who created the extraordinary genre. The book is spectacularly illustrated and international in scope, telling the comprehensive history of the movement, from its melding of Victorian, Edwardian and science-fiction influences to Lady Gaga and Alexander McQueen incorporating Steampunk into their art.

The author and contributors represent a ‘who’s who’ of the Steampunk, Victorians, Edwardians and science fiction genres the history of Steampunk is explored in-depth. Starting with its roots in literature to its ongoing evolution involving visual media and informing craft and DIY traditions, author Brian J. Robb, along with James P. Blaylock, Jonathan Clements (among others) not only chart Steampunk’s history but also its influence on culture today and its future.

STEAMPUNK: An Illustrated History of Fantastical Fiction, Fanciful Film and Other Victorian Visions is the first large, illustrated history-in a book, fittingly stylish in its design, package, and artwork. With 192 pages and 300 color images, the book will be a permanent part of any fans/lovers/creators of the genre.

About the Authors and Contributors:

Brian J. Robb is a New York Times/Sunday Times best-selling author. Among his works are Timeless Adventures: How Doctor Who Conquered TV, a critical and cultural history of the TV series (Kamera, 2009), A Brief History of Star Trek and A Brief History of Star Wars. He has also written Silent Cinema and Counterfeit Worlds: Philip K. Dick on Film.(Titan, 2005), and Screams and Nightmares: The Films of Wes Craven.

James Blaylock is one of the originators of Steampunk science fiction. He is the author of The Narbondo Series, including The Digging Leviathan, Homunculus, Lord Kelvin’s Machine, The Adventures of Langdon St. Ives, The Ebb Tide, The Affair of the Chalk Cliffs, Zeuglodon, and The Aylesford Skull.

Jonathan Clements is the author of several works on eminent Victorians and Edwardians, including Darwin’s Notebook; Mannerheim: President, Soldier, Spy; and Admiral Togo: Nelson of the East. He also wrote Red Devils, the first of the Space: 1889 audio plays for Noise Monster Productions, and numerous Doctor Who audio adventures.

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