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640 pages, Paperback
First published January 22, 2019
Can you ever make a new world that properly addresses the wounds of the past? - from Lightspeed interviewThe Kingdom of Copper is the second in S.A. Chakraborty’s Daevabad Trilogy, and it must be trying harder, as the first was amazing and this one is at least as good. I suppose you might pick this book up and have an entirely fine time reading it, but I would not advise it. If you have not read the first one, The City of Brass, jump on your flying carpet and dash off to your local bookstore. (Oh, and could you pick up some lamp oil at the bazaar on your way back? Thanks.) I suppose you could use one of your wishes to just make it appear, but really, that would be cheesy. It’s like Game of Thrones. Yeah, you can jump in at some point and catch up bit by bit, but, really, you have to be there from the beginning to get the most from it. Ditto here. Come back after you have read volume one, ok? And if you have already read #1, then Salaam and good evening to you, worthy friend.
[In medieval history] so many of these cities and civilizations were the products of waves of conquest. How does that shape the societies that survive them generations later? How do conqueror and conquered influence each other and how do their stories and legends of what happened get transmitted? Can you ever make a new world that properly addresses the wounds of the past? - from the Lightspeed interview
I wrote a lot of this while managing a large obstetrics & gynecology practice (while my husband went to medical school), and I really wanted to capture the messy reality of medicine. It’s not always glamourous and noble; it can be exhausting, the work is bloody and tiresome and challenging, and sometimes your patients are terrible. It requires a confidence bordering on arrogance to cut into a person for their own good, and I wanted to show how a character might grow into that. - from the QuilltoLive interview
Shannon Chakraborty didn’t want to be a writer when she grew up. “I wanted to be a historian, but I’ve been a bookworm since I was a kid,” she said. She originally wanted to be a historian, with a specialization in the Middle East. “That plan got a bit derailed for a variety of reasons, one of which was graduating in 2008 when the economy collapsed, so I figured I’d work while my husband went to medical school and keep my mind occupied with a little world-building/historical fan fiction,” she explains.-----The Quill to Live - The City of Brass – An Interview With S. A. Chakraborty
It’s that experience that led Chakraborty, who was born raised in New Jersey by blue-collar Catholic parents, to the seed that became The City of Brass. “It sprouted the day I set foot in the rare books library of the American University of Cairo,” she explains. There she lost herself in the stories and lore around her. “As a homesick, homework-laden, and rather wide-eyed new Muslim myself, I found in these stories a refuge; they spoke of a history that dazzled, a faith of breathtaking diversity in which my weird background was nothing new nor particularly noteworthy.”
I come from a pretty big family and always enjoy seeing well-done portrayals of complicated, messy, exasperating and yet also still loving relatives; I think it’s a thing many of us can relate to. And I’ve always had a particular fascination with rival princes. They’re fairly common in history, and yet I can’t imagine the emotions that go behind making a decision to war against your own brother.-----Pen America - On Magic, History, and Storytelling: The PEN Ten with S. A. Chakraborty by Lily Philpott – an interesting, wide-ranging chat
There was certainly some inspiration from my own family. My twin brother and I are very close, and I was very protective of him, especially when we were younger, even when we were fighting. This was definitely an emotion and dynamic that I was trying to capture with Muntadhir and Ali. Though my brother isn’t a wealthy, libertine playboy destined to rule a shaky kingdom so the similarities end there!
Evil is a relay sport, when the one who’s burned turns to pass the torch…