WINNER OF THE 2005 ARTHUR C CLARKE AWARD Mieville moves effortlessly into the first division of those who use the tools and weapons of the fantastic to define and create the fiction of the coming century. Neil Gaiman The third novel in China Mieville’s amazing imaginative sequence focused on the fabulous city of New Crobuzon. With economic slump and growing social unrest, New Crobuzon has become a fraught and dangerous place. The militia patrol in uniform, there is tension between its myriad races, there are even rumours of war. In an attempt to spur trade, a major company is building a railway across the continent, but the project involves brutal suppression of both the workers and the native inhabitants they pass. As mutiny grows among the slave labourers, one train is hijacked on the half-finished line. They tear up the track for a few miles behind them, then begin to rebuild it in front of the train – diverging from the original route and disappearing into the desert. This renegade train, ‘The Iron Council’, soon becomes an icon of freedom to the repressed urban population, till the city government has no choice but to hunt it down and destroy it. Whatever happens, they cannot allow it to escape-and so begins a desperate pursuit across alien wild lands filled with bizarre populations, monsters and hazards. PRAISE FOR CHINA MIEVILLE [Mieville’s] wit dazzles, his humour is lively, and the pure vitality of his imagination is astonishing. Ursula K. Le Guin, The Guardian (on Three Moments of an Explosion) Dark and thought-provoking. The San Diego Union-Tribune (on The City & The City) Richly conceived. The New York Times Book Review (on Embassytown) Mieville more than delivers. San Francisco Chronicle (on Kraken) Compulsively readable. The Washington Post Book World (on Perdido Street Station)
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