RTW – Best Book in June

YA Highway‘s blog prompt for the last Road Trip Wednesday of the month is always about the best book you’ve read for the month, in this case, What was the best book you read in June? When I took a peek on my iPod and saw the prompt, I thought, Hah! An easy one! because my mind immediately went to a fabulous book I read in June, the only one I read in paper form.

Then I took a peek at my Kindle list to see what else I’d read and realized, Dang! There’s a second one!

So I’m afraid I’m going to have two favorites again this month. First is Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld, the second book in his steampunk Leviathan series. As I mentioned, I read this one as a trade paperback rather than e-book. I had dropped into a fabulous indie bookstore in Davis CA, The Avid Reader, to ask if they would order in my YA science fiction book, Tankborn. I made a point of buying a book that day (a Jasper Fforde novel), then when I returned later to autograph the copy of Tankborn that they’d ordered, I again wanted to support the store by buying a book. I spotted Leviathan, a book I’d been wanting to read, and realized the trade paperback cost the same as the Kindle version, so why not buy it in paper?

It turned out to be a smart decision because the book is loaded with wonderful illustrations that I’m sure would not have been so beautiful on my Kindle screen. Once I finished Leviathan, I desperately wanted Behemoth, but I was determined to support the Avid Reader next time I was in Davis by buying the book there.

Finally I made it back to Davis, bought Behemoth and devoured it in just a few days. Both Leviathan and Behemoth are great on-the-edge-of-your-seat adventures, with a mondo cool steampunk world that meshes beautifully with actual history. I’ve been a Scott Westerfeld fan for a while, but these two books just up the fan gush.

You might think these are the two books I mentioned earlier. But no. I read Leviathan a couple months ago. The second fave book that I read in June is The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson. I follow Maureen on Twitter (is she a hoot, or what?), so I’ve known about the book for quite some time. But I avoided it because I’m pretty squeamish when it comes to gore and I feared this book would be full of it (the Jack the Ripper angle clued me in).

But although there are some pretty ick scenes that made me cringe, they don’t dominate the book. There’s such a great story here, I couldn’t stop turning pages. Plus, I loved the characters, the setting, and Maureen’s trademark humor (yes, many funny bits even in a book centered around Jack the Ripper).

So if you haven’t checked out the Leviathan series and The Name of the Star (also slated to be a series), I suggest you do, forthwith.

About karensandler

Lover of chocolate. A couple felines short of full-fledged Cat Lady. Author of the YA Tankborn Trilogy (TANKBORN, AWAKENING, and REBELLION), from Tu Books. Founding team member of We Need Diverse Books. Opinions expressed here are my own.
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12 Responses to RTW – Best Book in June

  1. Robin Moran says:

    Steampunk is a genre I’ve never read but would LOVE to start getting into. And the Leviathan series is the first thing I’m reading. I’ve read The Name of Star but didn’t actually enjoy that as much as I wanted to. The facts about England got in the way for me as a British reader.

  2. Rachael says:

    All of these are on my list but I haven’t gotten to them yet. When I first saw Leviathan, I didn’t think it would be my thing because I wasn’t into steampunk and I’m not a fan of his Uglies series. I’ve started getting into steampunk recently, though, so maybe I’ll check it out!

    • karensandler says:

      I think you’ll enjoy it. I loved the Uglies series, but was so-so on the Midnighters series. Not sure why. It was a cool premise and well-written. Just shows that our tastes vary.

  3. Katie L says:

    I don’t typically like steampunk but I loved Leviathan. The characters drove that story completely!

  4. I’ve been eyeing the Leviathan series for a while. I should really check it out.

  5. Elodie says:

    I haven´t read a lot of steampunk, it sounds like a good way to start😀 And The Name of The Star sounds quite intriguing, I need to add it to my TBR😀 Thanks for the recommendations!

  6. Been meaning to read Westerfield for ages and this Maureen Johnson story looks great! Thanks for the recommendations!

  7. Colin says:

    YES!! I love the LEVIATHAN trilogy! And I’m pleased to find another LEVIATHAN fan!😀 I would just say to anyone wondering if they would like it because it’s steampunk, or it’s got pictures, or it’s by Westerfeld and you’ve read other stuff of his you didn’t like, or whatever reason might be holding you back–set your concerns aside. This is an amazing story, with characters you will be rooting for all the way from book 1 to book 3. I think I’ve said it before somewhere, but I consider this the best series I’ve read so far since Harry Potter. And I think it would make an EXCELLENT Disney/Pixar movie.😀

  8. Jaime says:

    I still need to read the LEVIATHAN books. Colin (just above) keeps reminding me of this fact.🙂 I’ve been craving a little steampunk lately (shiny new idea brewing), so this would be a good way to feed it.

  9. Beck says:

    I want to read both of these. I was the same about the whole Jack the Ripper thing – am a wimp – but you’ve convinced me to give it a try.
    =)

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