Mechanica: a Beginner's Field Guide, by Lance Balchin

It is hard to believe now, but there was a time when the Earth was bountiful. Its seas teemed with marine life, there was an abundance of vegetation and wildlife on the land, and the ozone contained a perfect balance of natural chemical reactions.

In the late twenty-second century the Earth is very different than it once was. With the actions of human kind having changed the face of the Earth and the balance of nature, in particular the loss of insects and birds. In response to this, mechapets were created, elaborate machines which replicated the beauty and action of the living beings. Unfortunately, drone armies formerly used to fight wars have gone rogue and bred with the mechapets to produce mechanica, complex but problematic machine-beasts.

Liberty Crisp has long been fascinated with mechanica, having grown up with the opportunity to study them at the side of her scientist parents, and her tutor, Reginald P. Prescott, also an expert. When Liberty and Reginald have to flee their home of Sarawsati, they travel the world studying and documenting the mechanica.

Mechanica, subtitled a beginners field guide is an illustrated guide tot he mechanical beasts which inhabit this imagined future Earth, including detailed pictures, vital statistics and field notes, as well as an introduction (entitled A Brief History) and an Addendum which will leave the reader thinking about what might happen next.

this futuristic steampunk offering is in the form of a large hardcover picturebook and will appeal to middle and upper primary aged readers through to adults who will enjoy the fine art and the cleverness of the concept.

Mechanica, by Lance Balchin
Five Mile Press, 2016
ISBN 9781760401085