Reading The City & the City by China Miéville is like walking into a dream. There has never been anything written like this.
Stark realism and a vivid murder investigation start the tale off as James Patterson might. But the story quickly builds with the unique setting where two cities co-exist alongside one another, sharing the same space though they are two different countries...read the rest on Fantasy-Matters.
By R.J. Huneke
The language is key. And with language, China Mieville’s venture into the science-fiction genre is nothing short of spectacular.
As the master storyteller’s past works often utilize unique, flowing and intricate vocabulary, in general (just read The City & the City), the future described in Embassytown imbues. The world-society on Arieka is based around the very use of language and is dependent on word-craft to survive.
China Mieville depicts Arieka as an alien world in which the native populous, the Ariekei, only harbor the human enclave within a city that was co-constructed, alongside the Ariekei’s own, to be an Embassytown. The human city is a colony for the humans on the edge of the most unknown portion of space, the Immer, where few (Avice, the Immerser, is one of these) have traveled. And it is also a colony, of sorts, for the Ariekei, though the humans are largely ignorant to this fact…
There is nothing like this. The Ariekei, also referred to as the Host, are horse, maybe-fly or bird hybrid – well aliens – with two sets of wings and two mouths; they feel and seem utterly strange, lucid and imaginative (while still leaving plenty to the readers’ mind to discern). The Ariekei can only speak truth, from their two completely separate mouths, which is quite a contrast to humanity’s use of language in the book and out of it. The humans of Embassytown have learned how to genetically create and/or manipulate biotechnology and people to form their own Ambassadors who are linguists able to speak and negotiate with the Ariekes.
The main character that Mieville utilizes is Avice Benner Cho, the former native-born Embassytowner and successful Immerser, and she is as contemplative, stubborn, smart and kick-ass a female protagonist as you will ever see. Her life is forever intertwined to her homeland when the Ariekei choose her to become a simile, which allows them to stretch the truth in just such a manner that their minds evolve, a little.
For the Ariekei language is power, life and starkly intoxicating. Their dependence proves to be treacherous, as evolution and language-as-drug-use threatens the entire foundation of Embassytown.
“We speak now or I do, and others do. You've never spoken before. You will. You'll be able to say how the city is a pit and a hill and a standard and an animal that hunts and a vessel on the sea and the sea and how we are fish in it, not like the man who swims weekly with fish but the fish with which he swims, the water, the pool. I love you, you light me, warm me, you are suns. You have never spoken before” (Mieville, Embassytown).
The way of the planet and the space surrounding it is constantly explored and revealed to us, the reader, in a compellingly emotional and explorative narrative that unfolds steadily and brilliantly. What needs to be stressed is how the invented languages (and there are multiple of these in the work), terms and use of characters and story techniques are extremely experimental and courageously innovative, while maintaining a streamlined, philosophical, understandable and absolutely addictive reading experience.
Rarely are there newly constructed future-worlds in fiction that have such depth and originality as this one does. Frank Herbert’s Dune is the only book I can bring to mind that does so similarly, and that comparison is, in itself, of the highest praise.
If you do not know by now, China Mieville strives to bring his monsters to every genre of fiction, and to do so in an enthralling and utterly innovative fashion.
See the rest of the article in the IMPULSIVE REVIEWS Section.
In light of the recent battles that have multiplied across the earth, in particular the China Mieville VS. Everyone Blogs, RJ Huneke has taken it upon himself to seek out some of the more elusive combatants in hopes of kicking some ass.
Now it's true that NO ONE can beat up the author China Mieville, but where's the suspense in that? RJ Huneke has begun to tackle some of the most awe-inspiring warriors of the modern age starting with the Duke himself, Duke Nukem!
RJ Huneke VS. Duke Nukem: The fifteen year grudge match has finally come to terms, as the Duke - who largely disappeared from RJ's life for a decade and a half following one of the most fun ass-kicking video games ever - returns in June of 2011! RJ took out the game, threw down the package and taunted the yellow flattop by calling him a...SISSY!
The Duke, fresh off of a steroid transfusion and a universal kill spree on the aliens who took earth's women, put out his cigar in his hand (just to further prove how bad-ass he is) and leaped from the game cover out into RJ's living room. From there the author tried to bombard the fictional character with a flurry of hastily thrown Guinness bottles and an illegally painted black (so BAD-ASS!) Nerf gun. Though a foam dart struck the Duke in the eye, the muscle-head merely laughed at length. Nukem then serenaded his new-found foe with punches before taking out his shrink-ray and stunning the lanky RJ (who had never been short before in his life). Seizing an opportunity for defiling the holiest of sanctuaries, the Duke proceeded to knock all of RJ's precious books off of their shelves, while the newly-made little person stamped with rage impotently. Once the torture was thorough, the Duke then stepped on RJ with the Mighty Duke Boot: SQUASH!
Battle One: Duke Nukem Kicked RJ Huneke's Ass. RJ was down, but not out, however...to be continued...
I have turned the tide and started on my journey. Words and Worlds hang in the balance and I am writing it all down before the RJ Tower! Read about my newest novel on CyberwarSeries.com