Tag Archives: Shweta Narayan

The Mammoth Book of Steampunk edited by Sean Wallace

The Mammoth Book of Steampunk

Title: The Mammoth Book of Steampunk
Author: Sean Wallace, Ekaterina Sedia, Jeff VanderMeer, Caitlin R. Kiernan, E. Catherine Tobler, Jay Lake, Genevieve Valentine, Cat Rambo, Shweta Narayan, Aliette de Bodard, N.K. Jemisin, Peter M. Ball, Sharon Mock, Catherynne M. Valente, Alex Dally MacFarlane, Eileen Gunn, Michael Swanwick, Tobias S. Buckell, Matthew Kressel, Margo Lanagan, Amal El-Mohtar, Barth Anderson, Jeffrey Ford, James Morrow, Cherie Priest, Margaret Ronald, Megan Arkenberg, Benjamin Rosenbaum, Mary Robinette Kowal, Samantha Henderson, Nick Mamatas, Nicole Kornher-Stace & Lavie Tidhar
Series: Mammoth Books
In: The Mammoth Book of Steampunk (Sean Wallace)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Short story collections, Steampunk
Dates read: 3rd October 2018 – 6th March 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Anthology
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2008
5th sentence, 74th page: He was in his library, or so he called it, a small room that smelled of pipe tobacco and old leather, so close that one could barely breathe.


30 anarchic mash-ups of past and future that push the boundaries of steampunk.

Great steampunk stories confront an uneasy history of oppression – of women, other ‘races’ and classes – and the abuse of science, by reimagining the past. The writers represented in this outsatnding collection look to the future through the lens of the past, imagining worlds in which technology is used to uplift rather than to oppress.


I’ve only recently gotten involved in steampunk. It’s a genre that I only started reading late last year and one that I kind of love. Although, as I discovered with this collection of short stories, it is also a genre that I have to concentrate a little more to read (unlike genre such as romance).

This anthology runs the gambit of steampunk stories and brings a number of themes, styles and settings to life. It is a perfect way to completely disappear from the world after a long day. Although, with many of the themes, once you have finished the story you are thrown back into reality ten times more heavily than you were before. After all, most of these stories have a great commentary about the world that we live in today.

From capitalism to feminist movements, every major issue and discussion that seems to be occurring in modern society is touched upon in this collection. Yet, these aren’t all serious commentaries on the world. Some of the stories are kind of hilarious, and some are downright weird. The one thing that they all have in common is that they are thoroughly enjoyable and have helped to give me a new addiction.

<- The TraitorSteampunk: Looking to the Future Through the Lens of the Past ->

Image source: Amazon

The Mechanical Aviary of Emperor Jala-ud-din Muhammad Akbar by Shweta Narayan


The Mammoth Book of SteampunkTitle: The Mechanical Aviary of Emperor Jala-ud-din Muhammad Akbar
Author: Shweta Narayan
In: The Mammoth Book of Steampunk (Sean Wallace)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Easy reading, Steampunk
Pace: Slow
Format: Short story
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2009
5th sentence, 74th page: And so it was; she made a little golden child with wings and tail enamelled green, and named her Devadasi.

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A classic tale of pride coming before the fall. Mixing folklore, legend and a heavy dose of steampunk settings to weave a story that is as beautiful as it is meaningful.


I really enjoyed this story. The idea of a mechanical aviary built by a mechanical bird in and of itself is a great little story. Add to this the fact that a tale of morals is interwoven throughout, and this was the most fun I’ve had in the past few weeks. It was just so beautifully different and engaging. Without being overbearing in the way the message is outlined.

Although the primary story was fun, I actually enjoyed the creator’s tale much better. The way it interweaves was brilliantly done, and I like the fact that it echoes the primary story. The entire thing just worked seamlessly and I was actually really disappointed when it was finished…

 <- Clockwork Fairies Review Prayers of Forges and Furnaces Review ->
Image source: Amazon