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Steampunk Spotlight: Cherie Priest’s “Tanglefoot” & Clementine

Steampunk Spotlight: Cherie Priest’s “Tanglefoot” & Clementine

clementineClementine (Amazon, B&N)
Cherie Priest
Subterranean Press (208 pages, Sept. 2010, $4.99)

“Tanglefoot” (free online)
Cherie Priest
Subterranean Press (Fall 2008, free)

Reviewed by Andrew Zimmerman Jones

Cherie Priest has become one of the biggest names in the steampunk sub-genre, starting mostly with her groundbreaking 2009 book Boneshaker that introduced most readers to “The Clockwork Century,” the alternate history 1880’s storyline that she created. There are three main features of “The Clockwork Century”:

  1. The Civil War has been going on for over 20 years.
  2. There are airships (and other steampunk accoutrements, such as goggles).
  3. There are zombies (or close enough approximations)

Boneshaker focused on features 2 and 3, with the Civil War really just a background note that has little direct bearing on the story. After all, it’s set in Seattle, which is far outside the territory where the Civil War is being fought.

Clementine, on the other hand, leaves the zombies behind to focus on the Civil War (and the airships) in far greater detail.

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