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Topic: Help Me Out . . .

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Subject: Help Me Out . . .
Date Posted: 2/28/2011 7:28 PM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2006
Posts: 1,930
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So, I took the kids to the library tonight, they are all working on various projects and needed research, etc. The crafty librarians enticed me to bring home four books I found on various shelves and tables as I helped the kids find what they needed. One book I found is called "Voltaire's Calligrapher". I just looked it up on Amazon and am puzzled. One of the reviews says:

“While the prose is richly reminiscent of Umberto Eco, the headlong pace of this dark fantasy--combining elements of mystery, historical fiction, horror and the splinter genre clockpunk--will let readers swallow the entrancing story in a single gulp.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review) )

What the heck is "splinter genre clockpunk"????


Anyway, it looks like an interesting book - here is the blurb:

De Santis has fashioned an appropriately sinister—if slim—steampunk mystery set in the age of Voltaire. Although Enlightenment reasoning is inspiring forward-thinking writers, philosophers, and scientists, the forces of ignorance, represented primarily by organized religion, are fighting to retain their viselike grip on the hearts and the souls of the general population. When Voltaire dispatches Dalessius, a talented young calligrapher with a flair for conjuring up all manner of inky deceits, to investigate a plague of questionable miracles sparked by the prosecution and conviction of an innocent man accused of murdering his own son, Dalessius becomes ensnared in a deeper mystery involving the production and distribution of automatons. Richly imagined and vividly textured, this darkly humorous romp through a convoluted age of reason will appeal to fans of offbeat historicals. --Margaret Flanagan

I'm trying to figure out where I could put this book on my challenge list. The setting and time period I already have books selected. Maybe Voltaire was a hunk? I don't have an entry for Historical Hunk yet :-)


Date Posted: 2/28/2011 7:38 PM ET
Member Since: 7/6/2007
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Ooh! This book sounds good! Perhaps you can put it in the It's All Relative section, under the theme of "Books I Found At The Library" lol
Date Posted: 2/28/2011 7:41 PM ET
Member Since: 8/27/2005
Posts: 4,135
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Hmm. never heard of clockpunk.  I've heard of steampunk, but I couldn't tell you what it is.


Date Posted: 2/28/2011 8:22 PM ET
Member Since: 12/10/2005
Posts: 2,851
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Steampunk refers to fantasy fiction (and science fiction) set in an anacronistic Industrial Age where steam power is widely used. It often portrays advanced technology based on anacronistic designs.

Clockpunk is similiar in concept, but rather than the 18th/19th Century Industrial Age steam power, the focus is on springs and clockwork prevelant during the Renaissance. Clockpunk is actually considered a sub-genre of Steampunk because they share themes and styles.

Thus the book takes place somewhere between the 14th and 17th centuries and portrays advanced use of clockwork, possibly with anachronistic design.

Date Posted: 2/28/2011 10:07 PM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2008
Posts: 10,632
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@ Genie - Smarty-pants! lol!

Date Posted: 2/28/2011 10:44 PM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2006
Posts: 1,930
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Hmm, Voltaire lived from 1694 to 1778 so that makes sense. The clockwork element should be interesting.

Thanks for the info

Carolyn - I definitely should have done that for my "Its all relative" part of the challenge!

Date Posted: 3/1/2011 6:58 AM ET
Member Since: 5/19/2007
Posts: 4,720
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Sheila...if you join the mini-challenge, (historical mysteries) you could easily use it there.  Just sayin'....

Last Edited on: 3/1/11 6:58 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/1/2011 7:44 AM ET
Member Since: 12/10/2005
Posts: 2,851
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LOL @ Jeanne.

I couldn't resist.