Slap Happy's Reviews > City of Saints and Madmen

City of Saints and Madmen by Jeff VanderMeer
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Apr 21, 11


I have the Prime hardcover edition where even the book cover has a story written on it. A man rows toward the horizon, the city of Ambergris looms heavy in the distance, and has a mysterious encounter with a mythical King Squid. Vandermeer runs all the way home with this idea of his City of Saints and Madmen as a tangible, real life artifact from the world of Ambergris, which might not be as imaginary as the author had once thought it to be. His creation has got legs, like the King Squid, it can do the impossible - rise out of the water and walk on land.

VanderMeer likes to have fun with different styles, ranging from a tourist pamphlet by a pompous, though lowly historian to exotic glossaries, to more traditional third person stories. All of these varying styles, when combined, successfully tease out my imagination; my mind creates spaces between the tales for my own creations to occupy, and Ambergris begins to grow like a fungus. And yet, sometimes I begin to question whether or not they are truly my creations. Perhaps they are not, after all! The fungus spreads!
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