With The Dream of Perpetual Motion, author Dexter Palmer embraces multimedia, offering video, audio, a screensaver, and an online art gallery to accompany his steampunk opus.
Narrated by perpetual storyteller Harold Winslow from his prison aboard the zeppelin of a mad inventor, Palmer’s novel explores love’s uncertain place in an increasingly technological world. Part psychological prison diary, part Kafka-esque alternate reality, the book bends genres with a balance of wry humor and self-aware glee.
The events both leading to and unfolding during Winslow’s incarceration — including a fateful birthday promise, childhood games on virtual islands, and explorations of cities populated by mechanized men — are revealed through shifts in perspective, as well as newspaper clippings and diary entries. The result is classic literary imagination crossed with the knowing veneer of an engrossing sci-fi B-movie.
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Check out Flavorwire’s guide to other seminal steampunk works, explore more art inspired by the book, download The Dream of Perpetual Motion screensaver, listen to audio excerpts, visit Palmer’s website, and buy the book
The Good Ship Chrysalis, Nacho Yague
The City, Vladimir Desancic
Astrid Scheming, Ramona Szczerba
In the Tower, Sven Sauer
Imagining the Perpetual Motion Machine, Myke Amend