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Perdido Street Station

China Mieville

Average Review Rating Average Rating 9/10 (1 Review)
Book Details

Publisher : Tor

Published : 2000

Copyright : China Mieville 2000

ISBN-10 : PB 0-330-39289-1
ISBN-13 : PB 978-0-330-39289-1

Publisher's Write-Up

In the Sprawling gothic city of New Crobuzon, a stranger has come to request the services of Isaac, an overweight and slightly eccentric scientist. But it is an impossible request - that of flight - and in the end Isaac's attempts will only succeed in unleashing a dark force upon the city.

Complex, grand, absorbing, and darkly haunting, Perdido Street Station is replete with endless weird and ghoulish places and characters - characters that (apart from human beings) include aliens, hybrids, mythical beings, constructs, and chilling 'Remades'.

Merge Dickensian London with the L.A. of Blade Runner, add the characters of Lewis Carroll, and you will begin to get an idea of the hypnotic quality of Perdido Street Station.

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Reader Reviews

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Review by Paul Lappen (310106) Rating (9/10)

Review by Paul Lappen
Rating 9/10
New Crobuzon is a sprawling city, which is also very polluted and dirty. It is a place where all sorts of races, including humans and Re-mades (those who have been physically altered for various reasons, not always with their consent) live in fear of
Parliament’s brutal Militia.

Isaac is an eccentric scientist studying Chaos Theory. One day, he is approached by Yagharek, a member of a race called the Garuda (half-man, half-bird). Yagharek’s wings had been chopped off his back as punishment for a major crime, so he commissions Isaac to make him a new set of wings. As part of his research, Isaac acquires hundreds of species of flying things, from the smallest bug to the largest bird. He also studies the process by which caterpillars turn into butterflies. Deciding that his research is going in the wrong direction, Isaac gets rid of the rest of his "collection," and keeps a strange, multi-coloured caterpillar that thrives on a very powerful and addictive drug. One night, it emerges from its cocoon as a slake moth.

Slake-moths are flying, nocturnal creatures, whose wings show an ever-changing colour pattern, hypnotizing anyone instantly. This gives the slake-moth the chance to feed on a person’s thoughts, feelings and fears, leaving them in a permanent vegetative state. The Ambassador from Hell is asked to help in stopping the moths (there are now 5 of them terrorizing the city) and declines. The Weaver, a giant spider that can easily move between dimensions and has a liking for scissors, joins the hunt. How does one stop, or even slow down, creatures who can hypnotize anyone instantly?

This is a great steampunk novel. Put Charles Dickens, Franz Kafka and Neal Stephenson together in a blender, add a dash of Neal Gaiman and H.P. Lovecraft, and this is the result. It’s a long novel, about 700 pages, and the body count gets rather high by the end, but this novel is very much recommended.
Paul Lappen (31st January 2006)

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