King Rat by China Miéville

Having read Perdido Street Station first, I’m fascinated to see how some of the themes are present here in nascent form. PSS is by far the superior book, but King Rat is a worthwhile entry to the urban fantasy oeuvre: grimy and bold and honest, if mean. It’s also a great take on the Pied Piper fairytale, though I felt it was a bit unfinished in its mythology. It was also pretty nice to not have a gratuitous romance thrown in, and I really liked the political underpinnings, even if I found the musical dénouement a wee bit juvenile in its description of bass. Not a book for the weak of stomach, but a modern fairytale worth reading for everyone else.

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