Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld


Author: Scott Westerfeld [also wrote also wrote the Uglies trilogy [Extras], and the Midnighters trilogy [The Secret Hour, Touching Darkness, and Blue Noon]]

Pages [hardcover]: 485

Favorite Characters: Deryn and Alek

Book 2 in the Leviathan Trilogy
Book 1: Leviathan


The behemoth is the fiercest creature in the British navy. It can swallow enemy battleships with one bite. The Darwinists will need it, now that they are at war with the Clanker powers.

Deryn is a girl posing as a boy in the British Air Service, and Alek is the heir to an empire posing as a commoner. Finally together aboard the airship Leviathan, they hope to bring the war to a halt. But when disaster strikes the Leviathan‘s peacekeeping mission, they find themselves alone and hunted in enemy territory.

Alek and Deryn will need great skill, new allies, and brave hearts to face what’s ahead.


This series is one of my favorites at the moment. I haven’t read much steampunk, and so anything in that genre is new to me. I think everything is so creative-the Clankers, the Darwinists, how everything blends into the historical setting. I also love Deryn’s girls-are-as-good-as-boys attitude, Alek’s stuck-up princeliness, and the funny little creatures the Darwinists come up with.

There are pictures scattered throughout this book, and they’re beautiful as well as helpful. At some points I’d hear a description, attempt to picture it, and fail. Turning the page, I would usually see what it was imagined to look like. And when it comes to huge machines resembling pagan godesses and monsters that can swallow a ship whole, I need a lot of help.

The point of view alternates between Deryn and Alek. I like how one person from each side of the war is selected. Each tells the story in their own biased way, and then the reader is left to decide-which is better, Darwinists or Clankers?

I personally prefer the Darwinists. I’d take wee little beasties over smelly old machines any day. 😉

Behemoth, the second installment in the Leviathan trilogy, gets 5/5 stars. I can’t wait for the third book, Goliath! I think it comes out in September…


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