Leviathan by Scott Westerfield is a fabulous steampunk alt history adventure. Check out the audio book read by Alan Cummings. His accents bring the characters to life and make the book even more fun. I hope there's a (good) movie adaptation! I'm going to listen to the next two books this summer.
Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld, It is the cusp of World War I. The Austro-Hungarians and Germans have their Clankers, steam-driven iron machines loaded with guns and ammunition. The British Darwinists employ genetically fabricated animals as their weaponry. Their Leviathan is a whale airship, and the most masterful beast in the British fleet. Aleksandar Ferdinand, a Clanker, and Deryn Sharp, a Darwinist, are on opposite sides of the war. But their paths cross in the most unexpected way . . .
Histomap || John B. Sparks, first printed by Rand McNally in 1931 || the actual picture of the march of civilization, from the mud huts of the ancients thru the monarchistic glamour of the middle ages to the living panorama of life in present day America.