The Difference Engine

The Difference Engine

Book - 2011 | 20th anniversary ed.
Average Rating:
Rate this:

The 20th anniversary edition of the classic steampunk novel
With new commentary by the authors
1855: The Industrial Revolution is in full swing, powered by steam-driven cybernetic Engines. Charles Babbage perfects his Analytical Engine, and the computer age arrives a century ahead of its time. Three extraordinary characters race toward a rendezvous with the future: Sybil Gerard--fallen woman, politician's tart, daughter of a Luddite agitator; Edward "Leviathan" Mallory--explorer and paleontologist; Laurence Oliphant--diplomat, mystic, and spy. Their adventure begins with the discovery of a box of punched Engine cards of unknown origin and purpose. Cards someone wants badly enough to kill for.

Part detective story, part historical thriller, The Difference Engine took the science fiction community by storm when it was first published twenty years ago. This special anniversary edition features an Introduction by Cory Doctorow and a collaborative essay from the authors looking back on their creation. Provocative, compelling, intensely imagined, this novel is poised to impress a whole new generation.

Publisher: New York : Ballantine Books, [2011]
Edition: 20th anniversary ed.
Copyright Date: ©1990
ISBN: 9780440423621
Branch Call Number: FIC Gibso
Characteristics: xi, 492 pages : map ; 21 cm
Additional Contributors: Sterling, Bruce


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Dec 19, 2016

Outstanding work. very good pace enjoyable but intricate read. The authors spent seven years on this and it shows. Great twist in the construction of this novel. Good read

Sep 05, 2013

Can be hard in places to get into the story, but overall a good read.

Jul 17, 2012

Great read! alternative history - the difference engine is a stream driven computer designed by Charles Babbage

Dec 30, 2011

When you want your Victorian steampunk infused anachronistic with the precursors to cyberware, by two of the preeminent minds of Science Fiction.

Jun 22, 2011

Founding document of the Steampunk movement, which has produced nothing comparable since. Paleontologist hero and a Burgess Shale cameo.

Mar 09, 2011

Really difficult book to get into. Couldn't get very far.


Add a Summary

SqueeGirl Sep 26, 2009

What if Byron caused the Information Age to begin a century early?

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings

No similar edition of this title was found at VPL.

Try searching for The Difference Engine to see if VPL owns related versions of the work.

Suggest for Purchase

To Top