[review] Goliath by Scott Westerfeld

Alek and Deryn are at it again. Flying around Europe in the Darwinist ship Leviathan. Deryn is more on edge than ever as her secret sits on the edge of her lips, and Alek finds a new cause to support: one that might just end the war. In the story to come will these two friends be pulled apart forever?

I read Leviathan this past summer and absolutely fell in love. The sequel, Behemoth, was just as good, so by the time I got to Goliath my expectations were somewhere above the stars, so it’s no wonder Goliath fell a little short of my expectations, but I still really enjoyed the book.

Westerfeld has a knack at taking our world and twisting it into something new. You’ll find it in his Uglies series where he takes our present and turns it into our future. In the Leviathan trilogy Westerfeld looks to our past and creates a world where the countries are split into two factions: the Darwinist and the Clankers. The Darwinists like to use animals for everything. They have glow worms in their lamps. They make their ships out of giant animal ecosystems. They go parachuting with some sort of jellyfish-like…thing. They’re fantastical and realistic at the same time. The Clankers, by contrast, are all about machinery, but not the machinery you’d see in our world. No, they have walkers like you’d find in Star Wars and other things that I can’t really remember because we spend most of our time with the Darwinists… Anyway, the world building is fantastic. It even gets its own parole (i.e. slang), which makes the linguist student in me quite happy.

As for the characters, I felt they were slightly underused. We get a lot of focus on Alek and Deryn, which is great, but some of my favourite characters were pushed to the wayside because of it, like Dr. Barlow. Also, for the first time ever, we get a lot of SEPARATE focus on Alek and Deryn. And that was…frustrating. Probably necessary. But still. The best scenes were definitely when they were interacting.

The ending felt way too sudden for me and was not at all fulfilling. I read over a thousand pages because I wanted to see how a certain big plot point would end, and while we do receive our answer it doesn’t go beyond that. I’m sure the fanfiction writers will fill in the blanks, but really should they have to? Westerfeld sure knows how to leave me wanting more, but I’m not quite sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing.

Novels with similar aspects

Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

Sabriel by Garth Nix

recommended to fantasy readers who like all the world building and WWI buffs.

not recommended to fans of romance driven novels. This book has a romance, but it isn’t a romance mainly.

Already read and reviewed Goliath? Link me and I’ll quote and link you at the bottom of my review!

No plan to have a discussion post for this one as it would be mainly me just complaining about the ending XD If you have some spoiler-filled comments though, let me know and I’ll make a discussion post just for you. 🙂

About megtao

Student. Writer. Nerdfighter. Fights for love, justice, and awesome.
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