The last installment of the Leviathan series came out this fall. I have just finished reading it. I love the vivid imagery in this series. It is highlighted even more by the beautiful illustrations of Keith Thompson. I would recommend it to all you steampunk lovers out there.
The story is set in an alternate time line at the beginning of world war I where the major powers of the world are divided in either clankers, who favor steam driven machinery, and the darwinists, who favor fabricated animals for their weaponry.
Alek is the prince of Austria, a clanker power. His father, the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, is killed. An event which sets off a chain reaction around the world igniting the war. Alek is immediately smuggled out of the country in a stormwalker (a walking war machine) by his teacher Count Volger and the engineer Master Klopp. Their destination is Switzerland where there is a safehouse waiting for them.
Deryn Sharp is a scottish girl who wishes to be of use in the war. With the help of her brother she joins the British Air Service disguised as a boy. Britain is a darwinist power and employs the science of genetic engineering to fashion weapons. One of their weapons is an air ship called the Leviathan. However, this is no ordinary air ship, but what is refered to as an airbeast. It is mostly comprised of a massive whale and other fabricated animals which make up a fine tuned ecosystem. Deryn, soon finds herself serving on this ship.
In the air over Europe the Leviathan is attacked by German troops and crashlands in the Swiss Alps. Here is where Alek and Deryn's paths cross. Even though they find themselves on different sides of the war they infact have a common purpose. They wish for peace and soon become fast friends.
I shant go any further without revealing to many spoilers.