Asian Steampunk

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Happy Chinese New Year everyone!

To celebrate the Chinese New Year I thought I’d share with you guys some awesome steampunk set in Asia. And a plea. Please make steampunk set in China. After seeing this post on Tor, “The Problem with “Asian Steampunk” it shows how amazing it could be. Get on that.

For now, a selection of Asian Steampunk to check out.

Stormdancer (The Lotus War, #1)Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff

Arashitoras are supposed to be extinct. So when Yukiko and her warrior father Masaru are sent to capture one for the Shõgun, they fear that their lives are over – everyone knows what happens to those who fail the Lord of the Shima Isles. But the mission proves less impossible and more deadly than anyone expects. Soon Yukiko finds herself stranded: a young woman alone in her country’s last wilderness, with only a furious, crippled arashitora for company. Although she can hear his thoughts, and saved his life, all she knows for certain is he’d rather see her dead than help her. Yet trapped together in the forest, Yukiko and the beast soon discover a bond that neither of them expected.

Meanwhile, the country around them verges on collapse. A toxic fuel is choking the land, the machine-powered Lotus Guild is publicly burning those they deem Impure, and the Shõgun cares for nothing but his own dominion. Authority has always made Yukiko, but her world changes when she meets Kin, a young man with secrets, and the rebel Kagé cabal. She learns the horrifying extent of the Shõgun’s crimes, both against her country and her family.

Returning to the city, Yukiko is determined to make the Shõgun pay – but what can one girl and a flightless arashitora do against the might of an empire?

Gunpowder Alchemy (The Gunpowder Chronicles, #1)

Gunpowder Alchemy by Jeannie Lin

In 1842, the gunpowder might of China’s Qing Dynasty fell to Britain’s steam engines. Furious, the Emperor ordered the death of his engineers—and killed China’s best chance of fighting back…

Since her father’s execution eight years ago, Jin Soling kept her family from falling into poverty. But her meager savings are running out, leaving her with no choice but to sell the last of her father’s possessions—her last memento of him.

Only, while attempting to find a buyer, Soling is caught and brought before the Crown Prince. Unlike his father, the Emperor, the Prince knows that the only chance of expelling the English invaders is to once again unite China’s cleverest minds to create fantastic weapons. He also realizes that Soling is the one person who could convince her father’s former allies—many who have turned rebel—to once again work for the Empire. He promises to restore her family name if she’ll help him in his cause.

But after the betrayal of her family all those years ago, Soling is unsure if she can trust anyone in the Forbidden City—even if her heart is longing to believe in the engineer with a hidden past who was once meant to be her husband…

The Shadow of Black Wings (The Year of the Dragon, #1)

The Shadow of Black Wings by James Calbraith 

The divination clock is broken. The Year of the Dragon is coming.

In the midst of 19th century the world trembles before the might of the Dragon Throne’s ironclad navy and the dreaded Dragon Corps. A young dragon raider Bran joins a regiment of the Royal Marines, led by his estranged father, on a journey to the war-torn Orient.

In the lands of Yamato, sealed behind the Divine Winds, conspiracy to overthrow its military dictator grows stronger. A timid shrine apprentice Nagomi is haunted by the visions of dark future. Her only friend Sato, a tomboy samurai, strives for the right to learn and teach the art of western magic.

When Bran survives the sea disaster and gets separated from his bound-to–go-feral dragon, the paths of the East and West will cross in a way no one yet suspects…

Metal Emissary (Hanover and Singh, #1)

Metal Emissary by Chris Paton

Despatched on a secret mission in Central Asia, 22 year old Lieutenant Jamie Hanover encounters hostile tribes, steam-powered robots and djinn in his search for answers regarding the British defeat at Trafalgar.

Helped by the strange mystic, Hari Singh, the two men fight side by side in the mountains as they track a strange metal emissary through the infamous Khyber Pass.

Following in the emissary’s destructive footsteps Jamie and Hari travel to Adina Pur, where the uncovering of secrets and the culmination of their respective missions demands a heavy price.

Metal Emissary is a Steampunk Adventure set in Central Asia in the 1850s, full of weird machines, exotic characters, dust, snow and blood.

Read them? Know any more great Asian steampunk reads? Drop a comment and let us know!

Steampunk Hands 2017 coming soon

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Logo by Mr. XPK

Every February is basically Steampunk Month. A great event started by The Airship Ambassador, Kevin Steil, is now in it’s fourth year.

It means all steampunk bloggers get together across the world and talk steampunk. With a theme. One year I went out of my way to read the steampunk that wasn’t set in Victorian London, which was awesome fun, and showed steampunk can be done anywhere.

This year the theme is, “Making Life Better.” If you head over to the Airship Ambassador’s site, he’ll be hosting a complete list of blog posts that the community has put out there from February 1st.

I’ll also be taking part, so be sure to check out the blog on Mondays.

If you want to learn more about the event or take part, check out the Steampunk Hands Event post, with the Ambassador.

See you then!

Decline of Steampunk

Image result for broken cogOne of my favourite blog posts to write is about all the upcoming steampunk books coming out. I usually check out Amazon and look for pre-orders. And there are some, but there’s far less than I thought there would be. Are we hitting some kind of decline of steampunk books?

Have we ran out of steam?

So I thought I’d check in on the mainstream steampunk. Going through Goodreads I plucked out the steampunk books that have been published in bookshops, over the last 17 years. Of course I’ve missed books, so take with a pinch of salt.

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The horizontal are the years and the graph shows how many books published that year. So as we can see data nerds, that there was a gradual increase of books from 2008, right to the peak at 2013. And slowly, it has been declining.

A lot of series’ started wrapping up by the 2014/2015 period. Which probably didn’t help the numbers. (Looking at you Clockwork Century and, Burton and Swinburne)

I work in a bookshop, and I can count on one hand how many steampunk books we stock. Is it a lack of new books or a lack of people interested in the genre? When I see how many people get together for steampunk events, it can’t be the lack of people.

And surely not the lack of ideas. There are so many interesting stories to tell in a world of airships, automatons. How about a military steampunk?

And online there is tons of self published steampunk works.

Is this where we are heading? Is this even a bad thing?

Or will there be a revival?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments.