Sunday, 8 April 2012

Review of Ganymede by Cherie Priest

Ganymede (The Clockwork Century, #4)Ganymede by Cherie Priest

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I very much enjoy the Clockwork Century books by Cherie Priest. I have read all except the novella Clementine. Ganymede is not my favourite so far (that would be Dreadnought) but it's still a very good book.

Book structure/writing:

The book is told in 3rd person limited, following two protagonists in alternating chapters. I often have trouble reading such books in a decent amount of time, because each time the viewpoint changes I put the book down. Ganymede was no exception. I started reading it last year, but I only finished it yesterday. This is a problem with me rather than with the book, but it did affect my experience of the book.

Speaking of the viewpoint, in the last few chapters when the two characters are in the same place, the viewpoint shifts from one character to the other between paragraphs. At first I thought this was a viewpoint error in the story, but as it happened again and again, I came to realise that Priest had done it on purpose. It was a strange viewpoint to read: 3rd person limited but where the reader is privy to two charaters' thoughts rather than just one. I'm still not sure about what I think of the effect.


Ganymede is an interesting story with plenty of action, humour, and tension. It also acknowledges a lot of societal issues that are often ignored in Steampunk, such as racial tensions and gender relations. The story doesn't attempt to 'solve' these issues; it simply agrees that the issues were present and relevant, and then moves on.

All in all, I found it to be an enjoyable read, and I only wish that the view point changes hadn't jolted me out of the story and that I'd been able to read it quicker.

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