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Perdido Street Station (Anglais) Poche – 29 juillet 2003

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Descriptions du produit


Chapter One

A window burst open high above the market. A basket flew from it and arced
towards the oblivious crowd. It spasmed in mid-air, then spun and
continued earthwards at a slower, uneven pace. Dancing precariously as it
descended, its wire-mesh caught and skittered on the building’s rough
hide. It scrabbled at the wall, sending paint and concrete dust plummeting
before it.

The sun shone through uneven cloud-cover with a bright grey light. Below
the basket the stalls and barrows lay like untidy spillage. The city
reeked. But today was market day down in Aspic Hole, and the pungent slick
of dung-smell and rot that rolled over New Crobuzon was, in these streets,
for these hours, improved with paprika and fresh tomato, hot oil and fish
and cinnamon, cured meat, banana and onion.

The food stalls stretched the noisy length of Shadrach Street. Books and
manuscripts and pictures filled up Selchit Pass, an avenue of desultory
banyans and crumbling concrete a little way to the east. There were
earthenware products spilling down the road to Barrackham in the south;
engine parts to the west; toys down one side street; clothes between two
more; and countless other goods filling all the alleys. The rows of
merchandise converged crookedly on Aspic Hole like spokes on a broken

In the Hole itself all distinctions broke down. In the shadow
of old walls and unsafe towers were a pile of gears, a ramshackle
table of broken crockery and crude clay ornaments, a case of mouldering
textbooks. Antiques, sex, flea-powder. Between the stalls stomped hissing
constructs. Beggars argued in the bowels of deserted buildings. Members of
strange races bought peculiar things. Aspic Bazaar, a blaring mess of
goods, grease and tallymen. Mercantile law ruled: let the buyer beware.

The costermonger below the descending basket looked up into flat sunlight
and a shower of brick particles. He wiped his eye. He plucked the frayed
thing from the air above his head, pulling at the cord which bore it until
it went slack in his hand. Inside the basket was a brass shekel and a note
in careful, ornamented italics. The food-vendor scratched his nose as he
scanned the paper. He rummaged in the piles of produce before him, placed
eggs and fruit and root vegetables into the container, checking against
the list. He stopped and read one item again, then smiled lasciviously and
cut a slice of pork. When he was done he put the shekel in his pocket and
felt for change, hesitating as he calculated his delivery cost, eventually
depositing four stivers in with the food.

He wiped his hands against his trousers and thought for a minute, then
scribbled something on the list with a stub of charcoal and tossed it
after the coins.

He tugged three times at the rope and the basket began a bobbing journey
into the air. It rose above the lower roofs of surrounding buildings,
buoyed upwards by noise. It startled the roosting jackdaws in the deserted
storey and inscribed the wall with another scrawled trail among many,
before it disappeared again into the window from which it had emerged.

Isaac Dan der Grimnebulin had just realized that he was dreaming. He had
been aghast to find himself employed once again at the university,
parading in front of a huge blackboard covered in vague representations of
levers and forces and stress. Introductory Material Science. Isaac had
been staring anxiously at the class when that unctuous bastard Vermishank
had looked in.

“I can’t teach this class,” whispered Isaac loudly. “The market’s too
loud.” He gestured at the window.

“It’s all right.” Vermishank was soothing and loathsome. “It’s time for
breakfast,” he said. “That’ll take your mind off the noise.” And hearing
that absurdity Isaac shed sleep with immense relief. The raucous profanity
of the bazaar and the smell of cooking came with him into the day.

He lay hugely in the bed without opening his eyes. He heard Lin walk
across the room and felt the slight listing of the floorboards. The garret
was filled with pungent smoke. Isaac salivated.

Lin clapped twice. She knew when Isaac woke. Probably because he closed
his mouth, he thought, and sniggered without opening his eyes.

“Still sleeping, shush, poor little Isaac ever so tired,” he whimpered,
and snuggled down like a child. Lin clapped again, once, derisory, and
walked away.

He groaned and rolled over.

“Termagant!” he moaned after her. “Shrew! Harridan! All right, all right,
you win, you, you . . . uh . . . virago, you spit-fire . . .” He rubbed
his head and sat up, grinned sheepishly. Lin made an obscene gesture at
him without turning around.

She stood with her back to him, nude at the stove, dancing back as hot
drops of oil leapt from the pan. The covers slipped from the slope of
Isaac’s belly. He was a dirigible, huge and taut and strong. Grey hair
burst from him abundantly.

Lin was hairless. Her muscles were tight under her red skin, each
distinct. She was like an anatomical atlas. Isaac studied her in cheerful

His arse itched. He scratched under the blanket, rooting as shameless as a
dog. Something burst under his nail, and he withdrew his hand to examine
it. A tiny half-crushed grub waved helplessly on the end of his finger. It
was a refflick, a harmless little khepri parasite. The thing must have
been rather bewildered by my juices, Isaac thought, and flicked his finger

“Refflick, Lin,” he said. “Bath time.”

Lin stamped in irritation.

New Crobuzon was a huge plague pit, a morbific city. Parasites, infection
and rumour were uncontainable. A monthly chymical dip was a necessary
prophylactic for the khepri, if they wanted to avoid itches and sores.

Lin slid the contents of the pan onto a plate and set it down, across from
her own breakfast. She sat and gestured for Isaac to join her. He rose
from the bed and stumbled across the room. He eased himself onto the small
chair, wary of splinters.

Isaac and Lin sat naked on either side of the bare wooden table. Isaac was
conscious of their pose, seeing them as a third person might. It would
make a beautiful, strange print, he thought. An attic room, dust-motes in
the light from the small window, books and paper and paints neatly stacked
by cheap wooden furniture. A dark-skinned man, big and nude and
detumescing, gripping a knife and fork, unnaturally still, sitting
opposite a khepri, her slight woman’s body in shadow, her chitinous head
in silhouette.

They ignored their food and stared at each other for a moment. Lin signed
at him: Good morning, lover. Then she began to eat, still looking at him.

It was when she ate that Lin was most alien, and their shared meals were a
challenge and an affirmation. As he watched her, Isaac felt the familiar
trill of emotion: disgust immediately stamped out, pride at the stamping
out, guilty desire.

Light glinted in Lin’s compound eyes. Her headlegs quivered. She picked up
half a tomato and gripped it with her mandibles. She lowered her hands
while her inner mouthparts picked at the food her outer jaw held steady.

Isaac watched the huge iridescent scarab that was his lover’s head devour
her breakfast.

He watched her swallow, saw her throat bob where the pale insectile
underbelly segued smoothly into her human neck . . . not that she would
have accepted that description. Humans have khepri bodies, legs, hands;
and the heads of shaved gibbons, she had once told him.

He smiled and dangled his fried pork in front of him, curled his tongue
around it, wiped his greasy fingers on the table. He smiled at her. She
undulated her headlegs at him and signed, My monster.

I am a pervert, thought Isaac, and so is she.

Breakfast conversation was generally one-sided: Lin could sign with her
hands while she ate, but Isaac’s attempts to talk and eat simultaneously
made for incomprehensible noises and food debris on the table. Instead
they read; Lin an artists’ newsletter, Isaac whatever came to hand. He
reached out between mouthfuls and grabbed books and papers, and found
himself reading Lin’s shopping list. The item a handful of pork slices was
ringed and underneath her exquisite calligraphy was a scrawled question in
much cruder script: Got company??? Nice bit of pork goes down a treat!!!

Isaac waved the paper at Lin. “What’s this filthy arse on about?” he
yelled, spraying food. His outrage was amused but genuine.

Lin read it and shrugged.

Knows I don’t eat meat. Knows I’ve got a guest for breakfast. Wordplay on

“Yes, thanks, lover, I got that bit. How does he know you’re a vegetarian?
Do you two often engage in this witty banter?”

Lin stared at him for a moment without responding.

Knows because I don’t buy meat. She shook her head at the stupid question.
Don’t worry: only ever banter on paper. Doesn’t know I’m bug.

Her deliberate use of the slur annoyed Isaac.

“Dammit, I wasn’t insinuating anything . . .” Lin’s hand waggled, the
equivalent of a raised eyebrow. Isaac howled in irritation. “Godshit, Lin!
Not everything I say is about fear of discovery!”

Isaac and Lin had been lovers nearly two years. They had always tried not
to think too hard about the rules of their relationship, but the longer
they were together the more this strategy
of avoidance became impossible. Questions as yet unasked demanded
attention. Innocent remarks and askance looks from others, a moment of
contact too long in public—a note from a grocer—everything was a reminder
that they were, in some contexts, living a secret. Everything was made

They had never said, We are lovers, so they had never had to say, We will
not disclose our relationship to all, we will hide from some. But it had
been clear for months and months that this was the case.

Lin had begun to hint, with snide and acid remarks, that Isaac’s refusal
to declare himself her lover was at best cowardly, at worst bigoted. This
insensitivity annoyed him. He had, after all, made the nature of his
relationship clear with his close friends, as Lin had with hers. And it
was all far, far easier for her.

She was an artist. Her circle were the libertines, the patrons and the
hangers-on, bohemians and parasites, poets and pamphleteers and
fashionable junkies. They delighted in the scandalous and the outré. In
the tea-houses and bars of Salacus Fields, Lin’s escapades—broadly hinted
at, never denied, never made explicit—would be the subject of louche
discussion and innuendo. Her love-life was an avant-garde transgression,
an art-happening, like Concrete Music had been last season, or ’Snot Art!
the year before that.

And yes, Isaac could play that game. He was known in that world, from long
before his days with Lin. He was, after all, the
scientist-outcast, the disreputable thinker who walked out of a lucrative
teaching post to engage in experiments too outrageous and brilliant for
the tiny minds who ran the university. What did he care for convention? He
would sleep with whomever and whatever he liked, surely!

That was his persona in Salacus Fields, where his relationship with Lin
was an open secret, where he enjoyed being more or less open, where he
would put his arm around her in the bars and whisper to her as she sucked
sugar-coffee from a sponge. That was his story, and it was at least half

He had walked out of the university ten years ago. But only because he
realized to his misery that he was a terrible teacher.

He had looked out at the quizzical faces, listened to the frantic
scrawling of the panicking students, and realized that with a mind that
ran and tripped and hurled itself down the corridors of theory in anarchic
fashion, he could learn himself, in haphazard lurches, but he could not
impart the understanding he so loved. He had hung his head in shame and

In another twist to the myth, his Head of Department, the ageless and
loathsome Vermishank, was not a plodding epigone but an exceptional
bio-thaumaturge, who had nixed Isaac’s research less because it was
unorthodox than because it was going nowhere. Isaac could be brilliant,
but he was undisciplined. Vermishank had played him like a fish, making
him beg for work as a freelance researcher on terrible pay, but with
limited access to the university laboratories.

And it was this, his work, which kept Isaac circumspect about his lover.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Revue de presse

"[A] phantasmagoric masterpiece . . . The book left me breathless with admiration."

"China Miéville's cool style has conjured up a triumphantly macabre technoslip metropolis with a unique atmosphere of horror and fascination."

"It is the best steampunk novel since Gibson and Sterling's."

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Détails sur le produit

  • Poche: 640 pages
  • Editeur : Del Rey (29 juillet 2003)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0345459407
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345459404
  • Dimensions du produit: 10,7 x 2,7 x 17,5 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (4 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 51.643 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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6 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par Aldoo le 10 mars 2008
Format: Poche Achat vérifié
Il est difficile de dire s'il s'agit de fantastique, de SF ou autre.
On retrouve effectivement les aspects steampunk (machines à vapeur, éclairage au gaz, ordinateurs analogiques... ), un peu d'horreur à la Lovecraft avec ses monstres incompréhensibles (bien que l'ambiance ne soit franchement pas comparable).
Les personnages évoluent dans une grande ville (6-7 millions d'habitants) qui n'est pas sans rappeler Londres (quartiers pittoresques : docks crasseux, ghettos, etc. , lignes de transports en commun avec des noms au lieu de numéros, édifices pharaoniques... ), bien que New-Crobuzon soit une cité-état au régime corrompu.
Mais on est ici dans un monde complètement inédit avec sa propre (méta-)physique, sa science loufoque, ses nombreuses espèces sentientes, ses monstres. L'immersion est tout à fait réussie (cela dit, il faudra peut-être faudrait-il envisager la traduction française quand on est juste en anglais !).
L'intrigue, quand à elle, est assez peu prévisible en général (un détail insignifiant au début peut très bien prendre des proportions inattendues par la suite).
Bref, une très bonne expérience globalement.

Point fort : immersion dans un monde riche, réaliste et original
Point faible : quelques coïncidences scénaristiques (même si le scénario est tout à fait plausible dans l'ensemble)
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6 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par Kallisthène TOP 500 COMMENTATEURS le 27 juin 2007
Format: Poche
Mélange de Lovecraft et de 'steampunk' dans une ambiance de corruption extrême sud-américaine ce livre m'a ravi. Pourquoi ? Peut-être parce que les personnages ahurissants (ne serait-ce que la peintre à tête de scarabée) se conduisent comme si ils n'étaient pas les héros d'une oeuvre ? Parce que les enjeux sont introduits graduellement, assez pour qu'on ne perde pas le fil ? Ou peut-être en définitive parce que je n'ai jamais pu deviner où on m'emmenait, et ça n'a pas de prix !
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7 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par Lady Lama TOP 500 COMMENTATEURSVOIX VINE le 27 octobre 2011
Format: Poche
"Perdido Street" est un roman de près de 700 pages, dense et qui n'est pas facile d'accès.

La langue est riche (lecteurs d'anglais occasionnels, abstenez-vous et prenez la version française!), l'intrigue difficilement compréhensible au début et les personnages déconcertants. Franchement, durant le premier quart du livre, j'ai lutté furieusement pour continuer à lire.

Et puis tout d'un coup, miracle, j'ai été embarquée dans l'histoire, avec ses personnages chimériques (des femmes scarabées, femmes chiens, femmes oiseaux et j'en passe et des complètement ahurissants et difficilement compréhensibles), son univers noir (une sorte de futur steam punk) et son histoire qui enfin était sur les rails.

L'histoire, c'est celle d'un gros savant, amoureux honteux d'une femme scarabée, qui va chercher à redonner des ailes à un être qui en a été privé. Cette expérience, par moments comique, se transforme en une lutte classique contre une espèce menaçante, inconnue, a priori indestructible mais terriblement destructrice.

La créativité de l'écrivain est certaine, même si finalement il n'innove pas (le Council steampunk, déjà vu, l'Araignée, déjà vu dans The Black Jewels Trilogy, une ambience rejoignant un peu Bilal, ainsi que l'a déjà souligné un autre commentateur). Il en fait surtout une salade incroyable, répugnante parfois (très axée sur les insectes, pour qui je ne déborde pas d'affection), débordante d'ambition, assumée et réalisée. La conclusion est magnifique (j'aurais dû m'y attendre, mais je suis tombée dans le panneau!
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2 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par Guinea Pig VOIX VINE le 22 janvier 2011
Format: Poche Achat vérifié
China Miéville étant reconnu pour la ferveur de son imagination, je craignais un peu de me retrouver dans un monde absurde, sans tenant ni aboutissant, devant ainsi subir une lecture brumeuse, comme dans un rêve semi-éveillé.
Mais l'auteur est touché par le grâce du détail-qui-fait-tout et arrive à nous dépeindre un monde très différent, avec des êtres parfois très étranges, tout en nous faisant partager une sensation de réel et de concret extraordinaire.
Sa force (et sa faiblesse sans doute pour certains lecteurs) est sa puissance dans les descriptions. Celles-ci sont très nombreuses, très détaillées, mais aussi superbes, évocatrices et si inspirées qu'elles m'ont beaucoup plu la plupart du temps, alors que d'ordinaire j'ai bien du mal à me concentrer sur la description du cadre (décor, paysages, choses inertes). J'ai seulement trouvé un léger déséquilibre sur la fin, quand ces descriptions coupaient l'action qui s'accélérait drastiquement. Mais voilà bien un défaut véniel au regard du reste...

Les personnages de ce livre atteignent la perfection, étrangers aux stéréotypes habituels. Leurs défauts et qualités sont crédibles, tout comme leurs sentiments, leurs actions, leurs décisions. Le couple, pourtant très mal assorti, du personnage principal (Isaac, un savant à la Léonard de Vinci, sans le glamour !) et de sa compagne (Lin, la femme-artiste-scarabée, sans doute mon personnage préféré) est pourtant un modèle d'amour partagé. L'homme-oiseau au destin tragique, au profil psychologique d'abord incompréhensible, qui s'humanise petit à petit, offre une dimension poétique intéressante face au pragmatisme de l'intrigue générale. Et les méchants, divers et variés (vraiment très divers et variés !) n'ont rien à leur envier...
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111 internautes sur 120 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Is it a story or a picture? 24 juin 2003
Par Amazon Customer - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. China Mieville spends endless thousands of words painting pictures in this novel. Detailed and elaborate descriptive prose is weaved throughout the book, describing in great detail every aspect of New Crobuzon, the city in which the story takes place. And while I admire the great effort Mieville goes to in order to bring the city to vivid life, in the end I felt that Perdido Street Station suffered for it.
Momentum built in the story is repeatedly lost when a long descriptive passage is encountered. The focus on the characters and events is often lost, and I found myself feeling as if the prose was an intermission to the story, rather than a part of it. Ultimately, the story and the prose compete with each other so much that I couldn't really gauge whether the story was very good at all.
Would I recommend Perdido Street Station? Well, that depends on what kind of writing you like. If you enjoy lots of adjective-laden phrases painting verbal pictures, you'll probably like the way Mieville portrays the environs of his gritty, surreal, bizarre city. If you're looking for a good, entertaining story, you might be disappointed as I was. Perdido Street Station isn't bad - it's just not for everyone.
138 internautes sur 154 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A Dazzling Milieu 19 novembre 2001
Par Patrick Shepherd - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
If you are looking for the unusual, the bizarre, for unforgettable images, this is the book to get. Mieville's city of New Crobuzon is a phantasmagorical tapestry of weirdly modified humans, from cactus to bird to frog to ant-men, a technology that is an equally crazy quilt of steam power, magic, electric-powered clockwork for heightened psi-powers, a political structure that could come straight from Stalin's Russia complete with deals with an all-too-real Satan and a world-thread artist spider known simply as the Weaver, a trash-heap conscious computer, and intimations of a history and wider world that is even more fantastic.

Beyond the incredible scenery is an almost Victorian moralistic plot, where the protagonist is forced to deal with the consequences of his innocent-seeming research into methods of restoring flight to a criminal garuda bird-man. His fight against the slake-moths that were inadvertently freed as a result of one of his investigations forms the main story line, and slowly builds to an (almost) exciting story line. However...

Mieville's style is very densely descriptive. In the beginning of the book, this is excellent, as it paints a very dark, depressive, intimate picture of the city and its inhabitants. As the plot unfolds and becomes more pressing, though, this same style and repeated images become an obstacle to getting the story told. At the very moments when tension has been raised to high levels, we step out for two to three pages at a time for more descriptions, effectively destroying the pacing of the story. I think this book could have been considerably improved by some heavy cutting of this material in the latter stages of the book.

There are places where the plot could have been tightened. At multiple points, the Weaver saves our hero from impossible situations, an effective deus-ex-machina device as the Weaver can apparently do almost anything (except defeat the slake-moths single-handed). Although this is consistent with Victorian-era plotting, it really doesn't belong in a modern novel. Thematically the book also falls somewhat flat, with overly simplistic value/action/consequence matings, almost reminiscent of something out of Dickens.

A brilliant, off-beat, dazzling setting; an exciting adventure tale; but marred by too many words and too little depth.
150 internautes sur 168 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A journey through hell 23 septembre 2002
Par Ilana Teitelbaum - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Fantasy can to be said to examine human nature by way of myth and archetype, while science fiction does the same with technological possibilities; and horror explores human nature by route of our deepest fears. Perhaps what is most unique about "Perdido Street Station" is that it does all three, being at once of all those genres and at the same time refusing to be so neatly pigeonholed. For the fantastic elements blur into science, and the horror is present throughout.
The palpable atmosphere of the bloated and decadent New Crobuzon is one of the book's major strengths; and it reflects an irony that soon becomes apparent in Mieville's writing. Using the most beautifully wrought language, he creates a vision of hell to curdle the imagination. One is tempted to look away, but is inevitably sucked in by the seductive melody of his prose--melody that is paradoxically used to create dissonance.
The characters are introduced by degrees, so that they have time to sink into the reader's awareness before disaster strikes. This is a rare accomplishment, given that Mieville chose to make his main characters so potentially incomprehensible to us. Isaac is in love with a woman whose head is an insect--an idea that could have backfired terribly had Lin been any less vivid a personality than she was. As it is, that concept in itself is difficult to accept, as it defies reproductive logic that a race of women with insectile heads should exist; nevertheless, Lin is someone the reader comes to care about, and Isaac is a colorful and wholly original spin on the mad scientist stereotype.
It is difficult to tell if Isaac is in fact the main character, or if it is Yagharek's story after all. Through Yagharek's eyes the world is different than it is through Isaac's; more personal since his story is told in the first person; and the lyrical quality of his narrative, together with his desperate quest, binds the story in the form of a sad, twisted parody of an epic. In the end the story circles back to Yagharek, transcending political concerns to explore the universal problem of identity.
Those who are very sensitive to horrific imagery and even horrific concepts might do well to avoid this book. While Mieville writes without emotion, the events that occur do the work for him. The catastrophe that eventually overwhelms New Crobuzon provides no means of escape, not even death. The surreal quality of this book and the way in which it pierces to the deepest and most instinctive of human fears--the utter loss of identity--makes it less of a story than a lush, fantastic nightmare. And like a nightmare, very likely to stay with you long after you've awakened.
63 internautes sur 76 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Imaginative, but seriously flawed. 29 janvier 2002
Par Steve Graham - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
China Mieville's style here is impressive, invoking Dickens, Lovecraft and the 19th century in general. That and the brilliant creation that is New Crobuzon must've been what wowed the critics.
That said, I can't believe the fatal flaws in storytelling and characterization generally slipped under their radar.
I felt there were too many characters in play. One significant figure doesn't arrive until the last 20 pages! And I lost track of the villains; Vermishank, Motley, the slake moths, the mayor, etc. Some players meet abrupt ends, and some disappear for literally dozens of pages. My favorite character is given a major subplot early on, only to vanish for half the book!
The basic mechanics of the story suffer a similar fate. As Mieville bounces from character to character, plot threads are introduced, dropped, and mostly resolved (if at all) in a very unsatisfying way, especially after 710 pages of waiting to see how things turn out. In the end (spoiler alert), the remaining villains vanish from the stage, Isaac's apparent main goal is suddenly abandoned, and the heroes limp off into the sunset after horrible losses. I wasn't expecting "happily ever after," but the ending seemed half-baked indeed.
A final note: Mieville is fond of the words "stink," "stench," "greasy," "filth," and scatalogical terms I won't type here. Halfway through the book, I found myself thinking, "Okay, New Crobuzon stinks. I get it."
Overall, there's a lot of potential here, and genre crossover appeal, but I prefer tidier storytelling.
80 internautes sur 98 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Perdido Street: Terminal 14 mai 2002
Par Patrick Burnett - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
I'm often surprised at how often I find myself on the other side of popular opinion. If I hear enough good things about a book or a movie or a CD, I will try to experience it with positive expectation. I hope to like it. I want to like it. But too often, it seems, I am the only person who walks away feeling cheated, like the artist has simply played a colossal joke on me and used public opinion to lure me into a trap.
Or maybe I'm just paranoid.
Whichever it is, I have fallen prey to the lure of China Mieville's "Perdido Street Station". I even helped trap myself, having read the author's "King Rat" and loved it. But Perdido Street is an exploration without discovery, hype without a product, a whack-arsed fantasy for non-linear thinkers.
Neither of the main characters' stories intrigued me in the slightest, not that of Isaac, who is tasked with returning flight to an angelic birdman whose wings have been torn from his body, not Lin's story, of an insect-headed artist pressed into sculpting the likeness of a crime-boss.
As much as Mieville tries to instill the story with meaning and depth, I was still left wondering what it was all about and why I should care. And to add insult, the author has abandoned the beautiful language of "King Rat" and taken a contemporary tone.
This book is too long, too much weirdness for weirdness' sake, too forced.
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