Liz Murray's Reviews > The City & the City

The City & the City by China Miéville
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's review
Oct 24, 2012

it was amazing

Mieville is one of the most inventive writers I've read in a very long time. The City and the City is the third book I've read of his and while I didn't enjoy it as much as Embassytown I have a feeling he's an author I'll be following for a while. The first book I read of his was King Rat, and it's so hard to explain the feelings you get from that novel, same with this book. I'm not sure what the best word in English is but in French and Spanish there is a genre 'le fantastique' or 'lo fantastico' (not to be confused with fantasy or magic realism) and I feel this work of Mieville's and King Rat both fit the description well. The genre is defined by works where the supernatural (or something close) is part of a world we all recognize as our own. The City and the City has been compared to Borges and I think that's an apt comparison. There is nothing trite or cliche in Mieville's work and the writing is easily accessible. Every book of his I've read so far is unlike any other I've read. I recently tried to read an Iain M. Banks book and was let down by the cliched storyline and cardboard characters. I thought of Mieville as I struggled with Banks' book, it made me crave the creativity of Mieville and I have not been let down by the book I read as soon as I gave The Player of Games away.
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