7 Best Steampunk Picture Books for Children

There are very few children's picture books that are related to steampunk. Until then, here is a selection of books that relate to steampunk, be it in the magical settings, creativity, or encouraging interest in science and engineering.

Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts

Rosie Revere Engineer
Rosie is a little girl who loves to create helpful devices.  Unfortunately, not all of her creations work as intended, and she becomes discouraged.  Her great aunt encourages her to continue, even celebrating her failures as steps towards success.  This is a great story about perseverance and the creative process.

Violet the Pilot by Steve Breen

Violet the Pilot
A similar story to Rosie Revere, Violet the Pilot follows a little girl and her flying machine, which she plans to enter into an airshow.  Unfortunately, on the way there, disaster strikes.  While Violet is sad to miss the airshow, her sacrifice is recognized for the good deed it is.

How to Train a Train by Jason Carter Eaton and John Rocco

This book follows the process of choosing and raising a pet train, just as you might choose a dog or other animal.  The illustrations are as equally detailed as the instructions, though apparently not without some outcry; one page in the book shows a child "cornering" a train, standing in front of it, causing some parents to worry that this may encourage children to stand in front of trains.  I don't think that this ruins the book, which shows better than many other children's books the work that can (and should!) go into choosing a pet.  This is an especially great choice for those who may be growing out of Thomas the Train.

The Circus Ship by Chris Van Dusen

The Circus Ship
Based on the real life sinking of the The Royal Tar, this book reimagines a sad accident into an entertaining, engaging story.  When 16 animals swim ashore one day, it leaves a village in Maine scrambling to figure out what they should do.  The rhythmic prose of this book is especially a joy to read aloud, and the page where the reader is challenged to find all 16 animals is a great pause in the story.  I also enjoyed researching and learning more about The Royal Tar incident (though that is not so suitable for children).

How to Dig a Hole to the Other Side of the World by Faith McNulty and Marc Simont

How to Dig a Hole to the Other Side of the World
This book from my husband's childhood, and follows a child's imaginary 8,000 mile journey through the center of the world.  It is sneakily educational, with facts about geysers and the composition of Earth, and encourages critical thinking about what kind of tools you'd need to get through the center of the Earth.


Flotsam by David Wiesner

Written by the same author as the book Tuesday, I was given this book by a friend, and the kids were instantly fascinated with it.  It has a wordless narrative that is very accessible to children, and the story itself is very magical.  it's hard to describe much without giving it away, but the ending encourages children to think about how people are all connected to each other.


Mr. Tiger Goes Wild by Peter Brown

Mr Tiger Goes Wild
This was published just recently, in September 2013, and features animals living in a drab Victorian-esque world, made up of browns, and greys.  Mr. Tiger's orange visage stands out in this prim world, and he slowly grows tired of the properness in civilized life.  The rest of the book is a fun romp with good pacing, and the illustrations truly do a great job showing Mr. Tiger's dissatisfaction with his lot in life.

If these books interest you, make sure to check out my other blog, Steampunk Kids!

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