Monday, February 23, 2015

Weekly Update #181

Editor's Note

Well Lent has begun and so has my exile from YouTube. So far I haven't seen much benefit to my writing from my self-imposed ban. Real life events continue to intrude on the solitude necessary to get some real writing done, although I did manage to get a lot of work done on my Sideways in Time paper on Sunday. I just have to keep telling myself that no once cares how much time I had to relax or how much sleep I got (I only really need 6 or 7 hours, right?). They only care what I could have been doing during that time.

And now the news...

Check out King of the Cracksmen by Dennis O’Flaherty

Want to read a bizarre steampunk alternate history? Then you should check out King of the Cracksmen by Dennis O'Flaherty. Here is the description from Amazon:

How far will the luck of the Irish stretch?

The year is 1877. Automatons and steam-powered dirigible gunships have transformed the United States in the aftermath of the Civil War. All of the country’s land west of the Mississippi was sold to Russia nearly fifty years earlier, and “Little Russia,” as it’s now called, is ruled by the son of Tsar Alexander II. Lincoln is still president, having never been assassinated, but he’s not been seen for six months, and rumors are flying about his disappearance. The country is being run as a police state by his former secretary of war Edwin Stanton, a power-hungry criminal who rules with an iron fist.

Liam McCool is an outlaw, known among other crooks as “King of the Cracksmen.” But his glory days as a safecracker and the head of a powerful New York gang end when he’s caught red-handed. Threatened with prison unless he informs on his own brethren fighting a guerilla war against Stanton’s tyranny, McCool’s been biding his time, trying to keeping the heat off him long enough to escape to San Francisco with his sweetheart Maggie. But when she turns up murdered, McCool discovers a trail of breadcrumbs that look to lead all the way up to the top of Stanton’s criminal organization. Joining forces with world-famed lady reporter Becky Fox, he plunges deep into the underground war, racing to find Maggie’s killer and stop Stanton once and for all.

King of the Cracksmen is an explosive, action-packed look at a Victorian empire that never was, part To Catch a Thief, part Little Big Man, steampunk as you’ve never seen it before.

Last week Dennis was promoting his new novel at some prominent SF sites. He did an interview over at The Qwillery and the first chapter of the novel was posted at Bibliotropic. If you get a chance to read King of the Cracksmen, let us know. We would love to post a review.

Videos for Alternate Historians

This week I have an older video to showcase. It was originally published in 2010, but it goes along nicely with my recent review of Baxter's Voyage:
Its a computer simulation of Baxter's proposed Mars mission. It is actually pretty cool to watch and the musical accompaniment makes it an intense video. The channel, Rseferino Orbiter Filmmaker, appears to show computer animated simulations of various space-based missions, including several proposed missions, meaning there is a lot of alternate history content to this channel. I highly recommend you go check it out.

If you know of any other alternate history videos or YouTube channels, don't forget to share them with me at ahwupdate at gmail dot com.

Links to the Multiverse

Books & Short Fiction

Five Books About the Perils of Education by Ian Macleod at Tor.
For Steampunk Hands 2015: The Raj Revised: Steampunking History at Steampunk India.
John Mierau Explores What Happened After “War of the Worlds” in ASUNDER at SF Signal.
On My Radar: The Suicide Exhibition, Razorhurst and Bone Gap at SF Signal.
Review: The Case of the Missing Moonstone by Jordan Stratford at Fantasy Literature.
Review: The Janus Affair by Pip Ballantine and Tee Morris at Bibliotropic.
Review: The Mechanical by Ian Tregillis at Pat's Fantasy Hotlist.
Review: Wild Cards: Aces Abroad edited by George R R Martin at The Little Red Reviewer.
Steampunk…. Seriously? by Professor Elemental at Airship Ambassador.
Table of Contents: The Change: Tales of Downfall and Rebirth Edited by S.M. Stirling at SF Signal.

Counterfactuals, History & News

5 Uprisings Cut from U.S. History for Being Too Successful at Cracked.
10 people who very nearly became President at Yahoo!
Oklahoma lawmaker seeks to do away with AP history courses at News Channel 4.
The UK government wants to get this massive airship back in the air at The Verge.
Why ISIS Isn’t Medieval by John Terry at Slate.

Film & Television

10 Time Travel Books That Need To Be Movies Right Now (If Not Sooner) at io9.
10 YouTube Channels That Actually Make Learning Fun at Learning Lift Off.
12 Monkeys 1.6: Can I Get a Witness? at Paul Levinson's Infinite Regress.
Alternate history? Shanahan says 2 game-changing QBs were in play at CSN Washington.
Frank Spotnitz Takes Us Inside Amazon's The Man In The High Castle at TV Fanatic.
J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot Productions is Developing a Thomas Edison Biopic at Best Movies Ever.
Review: Agent Carter Ep.6 at Geek Syndicate.


Airship Q Coming Soon To PlayStation 4 and Vita at Geek Syndicate.
Civilization Players Are Sending The Entire World To War at Kotaku.
The Great Gatsby Nintendo Game at Dieselpunk.
Review: The Order: 1886 at PlayStation Universe.
YouTube Leak Derails Launch Of Big PS4 Exclusive at Kotaku.

Graphic Novels & Comics

The 19XX Dieselpunk Epic Concludes Its First Trilogy In Shining Skull: 1936 at Bleeding Cool.


Elizabeth Bear at My Bookish Ways.
VE Schwab at Fran Wilde.


Musical on alternate EDSA history to feature Eraserheads composition at Phil Star.

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Matt Mitrovich is the founder and editor of Alternate History Weekly Update and a blogger on Amazing Stories. Check out his short fiction. When not writing he works as an attorney, enjoys life with his beautiful wife Alana and prepares for the inevitable zombie apocalypse. You can follow him on Facebook or Twitter.

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