Crowdsourcing The Essentials: Steampunk

Last time, we crowdsourced straight-up horror novels.

Now it’s time to dive back down into the niche a little bit and ask —

What are your essential steampunk reads?

Hell, just what is steampunk as you define it?

Drop into the comments and list your top three essential steampunk reads (doesn’t matter if it crosses over with what other people have said; that’s the point, as you’ll see when we tally ’em). Then, if you’re so inclined, talk about what steampunk even is to you as a subgenre.

The comment section awaits.


  • Cherie Priest’s entire catalog. I think each of her Clockwork Century books are brilliant.
    George Man, The Affinity Bridge. My favorite British/Victorian novel.
    Shawn Gaston’s, Clockworks webcomic.I have been following him since his third or fourth page. The art and story are excellent.

  • Bruce Sterling and William Gibson: The Difference Engine.
    I read this when it was first released, it totally blew me away. I was in my early/mid 20’s and entered a realm, that as far as I was concerned had never existed. Amazing the similarities & ingenuity, yet it’s 20+ years later.

  • The Difference Engine-Gibson,Sterling
    The Anubis Gates-Powers

    These books pull off the steampunk vibe almost effortlessly while so many others try so hard to incorporate elements of the genre that they lose sight of the genre’s purpose–that is, to integrate the boundless idealism of the romantics with the limitless possibilities of technology (and thus explore the potential ramifications of such a combination in the midst of a damn-enjoyable adventure story).

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