Mark's Reviews > Perdido Street Station

Perdido Street Station by China Miéville
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's review
Nov 08, 2007

it was amazing
bookshelves: dark-fantasy
Recommended for: fans of Clive Barker or Charles Palliser
Read in November, 2007

This is one of the richest, most imaginative, and darkest books I think I've read. The pages drip with imagery and the palpable sense of impending doom almost made my fingers bleed as I turned the pages.

This isn't horror, not exactly, though it's definitely a dark story. The novel takes place in the city of New Crobuzon, a city of mostly humans, but a lot of aliens, too, on a distant world. The city is a mixture of Victorian London and modern-day Calcutta with some basic thaumaturgy and mysticism thrown in. Perdido Street Station is the city's heart -- where the train lines cross, the skyships dock, and the not-to-be-fucked-with militia is headquartered.

The story is about a down-on-his-luck rogue scientist involved in a socially-illicit affair with an insect-like khepri sculptress. One day, an angel shows up on the scientist's door and wants help getting his wings back, which had been removed because of an unspoken crime in the past. In the meantime, the city's drug trade is booming and something dark is about to be unleashed on the city.

All these story lines converge in an ending that was the only part of the book I found slightly dissatisfying. I still give it five stars for the richness of the dish. Only the ending kept it from being a perfect meal.

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