Teens’ Top Ten 2011: Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld

Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld is one of the Teens’ Top Ten nominations for 2011.

Reviewed by Cheenu T.

This book is a sequel in a trilogy and the first book is called Leviathan. For those who haven’t read the first book, the setting is a futuristic replication of WWI. The archduke of Ferdinand is assassinated, sparking a war between Austria-Hungary, Germany, Russia, France, and Great Britain. The factions (the Allies and the Axis powers) have different war weapons. The Allies (Great Britain, France, Russia, etc.) use genetically modified animals to the point of making whales into flying airships. The Axis powers (Germany, Austria-Hungary, etc.) use steam-powered machines that vary in size, from small four-legged scout vehicles to enormous eight-legged fortresses.

The archduke of Ferdinand gets assassinated, starting a world war between the world powers of Europe. Archduke Ferdinand’s son, Aleksander Ferdinand, escapes with a band of loyal men. They are wanted because Alek is heir to the throne and could stop the war, which the Germans don’t want.

Meanwhile a girl named Deryn Sharp disguised as a boy enters service as a midshipman on the airship Leviathan which is a whale. The airship crashes in a battle with German planes and Aleksander’s group ends up saving them. The airship then heads toward the Ottoman Empire in Istanbul to stop them from entering the war on the German side.

Behemoth is about how they try to stop the Ottomans from entering the war. The Ottoman Empire is not happy with the British because they kept a warship that was meant to be given to them. The British kept it when the war started and the Leviathan is sent to diplomatically soothe the hatred. What they don’t know is that the Germans have already twisted the Ottoman Empire to their way of thinking…

Will the Leviathan be able to stop the Ottoman Empire from entering on the German side? What will happen if the Ottoman Empire enters on the German side? Find out in Behemoth, by Scott Westerfeld.

This book was a huge adrenalin rush from start to end. It was so good I read it again at least five times. It has science fiction themes in it, but it isn’t a full-fledged Star Wars style story. The book has a LOT of action in it and the plot is well laid out. There are many twists and turns in this book and at the end you will think, “Wow.”  I rate this book a 9.9 out of 10 because of its intricate plot and the action. If you like action and you can understand science fiction to a certain extent, this book is perfect for you.

To learn more about the Teens’ Top Ten, click here. To request this book from Wake County Libraries, click here.  Voting begins August 22, 2011 and ends September 16, 2011.  To vote during these dates, click here.

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