Argentinian artist Ignacio Bazán Lazcano had us at “badass post-apocalyptic bikers,” but he ensured our permanent loyalty when he threw “Colonial Marines” and “steampunk robot cavalry” into the equation. His DeviantArt page is chock-full of all sorts of awesome stuff, but after stumbling across it, I was particularly drawn to three different projects of his. First up is “Rebel Bikes,” which imagines heavily armed motorcycles perfectly suited for crossed the heat-blasted wastes in search of gas and supplies. I love the sheer amount of detail he’s worked into these pics.
As much as we love science fiction on TV, on the big screen, on the comics page, and in video game form, there’s just something irreplaceable about digging into a good book. There’s no shortage of new sci-fi adventures hitting shelves on a regular basis, but GFR is your one-stop shop to keep up with what’s hitting shelves in a given week. Here’s what’s new on the Giant Freakin’ Bookshelf!
“Fiddlehead (Clockwork Century)” by Cherie Priest
Young ex-slave Gideon Bardsley is a brilliant inventor, but the job is less glamorous than one might think, especially since the assassination attempts started. Worse yet, they’re trying to destroy his greatest achievement: a calculating engine called Fiddlehead, which provides undeniable proof of something awful enough to destroy the world. Both man and machine are at risk from forces conspiring to keep the Civil War going and the money flowing.
Bardsley has no choice but to ask his patron, former president Abraham Lincoln, for help. Lincoln retired from leading the country after an attempt on his life, but is quite interested in Bardsley’s immense data-processing capacities, confident that if people have the facts, they’ll see reason and urge the government to end the war. Lincoln must keep Bardsley safe until he can finish his research, so he calls on his old private security staff to protect Gideon and his data.
Maria “Belle” Boyd was a retired Confederate spy, until she got a life-changing job offer from the Pinkerton Detective Agency. Pinkerton respects her work, despite reservations about her lingering Southern loyalties. But it’s precisely those loyalties that let her go into Confederate territory to figure out who might be targeting Bardsley. Maria is a good detective, but with spies from both camps gunning for her, can even the notorious Belle Boyd hold the greedy warhawks at bay?
Another rollicking alternate history from Cherie Priest—Fiddlehead is the fifth book in the Clockwork Century steampunk series that started with Boneshaker
Whenever I go into my kitchen to get liquor — as all alcoholics-in-denial are wont to do between the hours of noon and…noon — all I’m doing is reaching up into a cabinet to grab a bottle. It’s the same cabinet where my wife and I keep the glassware that’s paired with boozy drinks, as well as food scales for some reason. There’s no pomp to the action, and no ceremony within the cabinet. It’s a good thing getting wall-eyed isn’t this boring.
Vancouver artist and wood mastermind Colin Johnson doesn’t have to worry about that, seeing as how he built his own steampunk-inspired wooden Star Wars AT-AT Walker liquor cabinet. (A cooler string of words will not be uttered today.) As a standalone item, it’s incredibly well-crafted piece of art that inspires different levels of unexplainable nostalgia, though I think the design of the wood panels is what does it. In any case, it isn’t just a piece of art. It’s as fully functional as a real AT-AT Walker, assuming that all real AT-AT Walkers do is hold liquor within them. I mean, it’s been a while since I’ve watched Star Wars, but I’m pretty sure I remember one of the Walkers acting like a St. Bernard, saving Luke Skywalker from freezing to death on Hoth by pulling a snifter of cognac from its side and pouring it down Luke’s throat. Did that not happen?