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Perdido Street Station Hardcover – Apr 30 2006


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 700 pages
  • Publisher: Nightshade Book; Limited edition (April 30 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1597800244
  • ISBN-13: 978-1597800242
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (181 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,888,743 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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First Sentence
Aspic Bazaar, a blaring mess of goods, grease and tallymen. Read the first page
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A. J. Cull on March 7 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
If I had to place stupendously imaginative novel Perdido Street Station in a genre, I'd say it was fantasy steampunk. Exotic and nightmarish creatures abound in New Crobuzon, a bustling, chaotic city milieu in a world featuring both magic and primitive technology. There is also a political dimension to the story, which highlights the abuse of power and also reflects the author's left-wing convictions. Be warned that there is a scarcity of happy outcomes for the characters, who are complex and never two-dimensional. If you have read and loved Mervyn Peake's Gormenghast books, you will immediately warm to China Mieville.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Ben Cooper on May 29 2003
Format: Paperback
Perdido is not a casual read. The language is dense, and if you're vocabulary isn't up to snuff, you'll probably struggle with this. Mieville also dedicates an incredible amount of time to imagery and atmosphere. On top of all that, the book takes a while to warm up, and at times the plotting feels loose and disjointed.
So, you may be asking, why did I give this five stars? Because once the story got going, I couldn't put it down, flaws and all. Mieville's imagination is nearly boundless and it's a book, love it or hate it, that's unlike anything else. And in the Weaver, a spider-like god that walks the web of reality, Mieville has created one of the most interesting and wonderfully bizarre characters I've ever come across. The minute he/she/it stepped on the page, I was enthralled. Always. I'd reccomend checking this one out for the Weaver alone.
And even though Perdido felt aimless at times (a tighter plot would have done wonders), certain scenes were so amazing that I doubt I'll ever forget them. The chapter involving the Ambassador of Hell was simply brilliant, and it's just one amongst the many.
Though Perdido is not without its faults, its pros far out-weigh the cons, especially in the latter half. For the patient and open-minded, this is not a book to pass up, for it will definitely make an impression and probably a lasting one.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By hi.anja on Jan. 24 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I finished this a while ago, but it’s one of those books I need a certain distance from before I am ready for any sort of evaluation.
Miéville is not Peake, and I think one does him a disservice by a comparison which can only disappoint. “Perdido Street Station” has a richly detailed setting, painted with all the stops pulled out and a loving eye for the small particulars that create the big picture. But where Peake populated his stories with well-rounded, memorable, idiosyncratic, living, breathing beings, Miéville ‘builds’ his characters like he builds his city, creating props for his fantastic stage rather than personalities. I caught myself wondering, in fact, if it’s not New Crobuzon, who is the true protagonist of the story.
The story ...
Whose story? Isaac’s? Yagharek’s? New Crobuzon’s?
Yagharek with his lyrical, introverted voice came more alive for me than Isaac did, but he was not really given enough room to be the protagonist; he’s more of a catalyst and the frame that tries to hold this sprawling behemoth (pardon the pun) together. Which again leaves the city. The characters don’t really drive the plot, the city does -- this steaming, moving, writhing conglomeration of streets, buildings, machines and populace. And it does not merely drive the main plot, but throws out a multitude of independent little polyp arms, plot lines that lead back to themselves or nowhere in particular. A baroque monster, ugly, frustrating, barely comprehensible at times and utterly fascinating.
What’s it about? Responsibility? Consequences? Guilt? Who we are and what makes us who we are? Maybe.
Why read it?
Read more ›
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I first read Perdido Street Station a number of years ago and was blown away by Mieville's fertile imagination. Now that I've read a considerable number of his other works--including the two later volumes in the trllogy, The Scar and Iron Council--I've come to recognize Mieville as a very important literary figure. I've taught his The City & The City in a mystery/detective fiction course and am very pleased to report that students are much taken with Mieville's genre-bending volume, and his successful invocation of political/cultural divisions into an original imaginative form. I would also highly recommend Kraken.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Welcome to New Crobuzon! A disgusting and wretched city...where lots of fascinating people live. This is my fourth book by Miéville and none of them have ever disappointed me. His way of describing characters is his main strength. In an environment where people can be remade and different species of non-human coexist, you can read the full measure of his talent.
The two main metaphors of the book are pollution (the whole city) and unstoppable man-made plagues (deadly moth creatures). His best creation of the book is The Weaver, a free-verse mad demi-God in the form of a giant spider...who happens to write messages to the main characters of the book in a newspaper's readers column. Priceless. One of those books I really wanted not to end.
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