The city and the city china mieville pdf
The City & the City by China MievilleWhen a murdered woman is found in the city of Beszel, somewhere at the edge of Europe, it looks to be a routine case for Inspector Tyador Borlu of the Extreme Crime Squad. But as he investigates, the evidence points to conspiracies far stranger and more deadly than anything he could have imagined.
Borlu must travel from the decaying Beszel to the only metropolis on Earth as strange as his own. This is a border crossing like no other, a journey as psychic as it is physical, a shift in perception, a seeing of the unseen. His destination is Beszel’s equal, rival, and intimate neighbor, the rich and vibrant city of Ul Qoma. With Ul Qoman detective Qussim Dhatt, and struggling with his own transition, Borlu is enmeshed in a sordid underworld of rabid nationalists intent on destroying their neighboring city, and unificationists who dream of dissolving the two into one. As the detectives uncover the dead woman’s secrets, they begin to suspect a truth that could cost them and those they care about more than their lives.
What stands against them are murderous powers in Beszel and in Ul Qoma: and, most terrifying of all, that which lies between these two cities.
Casting shades of Kafka and Philip K. Dick, Raymond Chandler and 1984, The City & the City is a murder mystery taken to dazzling metaphysical and artistic heights.
The spaces in between
It argues that the novel conducts a literary experiment that allows for the abstract categories of The Production of Space to be incarnated and actualized. Born with the rise of urbanization, and the new type of social and spatial relationships it entailed, detective fiction is inherently associated with cities — in fact, it can be regarded as a new form to account for a new spatial configuration. No one can have failed to notice that in these stories the hero or the investigator crosses London with something of the loneliness and liberty of a prince in a tale of elfland, that in the course of that incalculable journey, the casual omnibus assumes the primal colours of a fairy ship. The lights of the city begin to glow like innumerable goblin eyes, since they are the guardians of some secret, however crude, which the writer knows and the reader does not. Every twist of the road is like a finger pointing to it; every fantastic skyline of chimney-pots seems wildly and derisively signalling the meaning of the mystery.
In conversation with... David Morrissey and the makers of The City and the City - BFI
His later work is primarily set in the alternative world of Bas-Lag - ambitious novels such as Perdido Street Station and Iron Council, packed with grotesque characters, gorgeous imagery, amazing monsters, political parables and intricate plotting. The City and the City is very different. It takes place in our familiar world, a post-Soviet locale which draws on string theory for its ideas and conventional experience for its story. Apart from one exceptional detail, this book could be a clever mystery story told from the point of view of a Balkan policeman struggling to cope with the problems of a society burdened by traditions and attitudes from its recent authoritarian past. Featureless concrete, rattling trams and antiquated office equipment invoke Greene's The Third Man and Vienna's zones of occupation. You can almost hear a zither twanging somewhere in an echoing sewer. Citizens of each city can dimly make out the other, but are forbidden on pain of severe penalties administered by a supreme authority known simply as Breach to notice it.
A four-part television adaptation by the BBC was broadcast in These two cities actually occupy much of the same geographical space, but via the volition of their citizens and the threat of the secret power known as Breach , they are perceived as two different cities. A denizen of one city must dutifully "unsee" that is, consciously erase from their mind or fade into the background the denizens, buildings, and events taking place in the other city — even if they are an inch away. This separation is emphasised by the style of clothing, architecture, gait, and the way denizens of each city generally carry themselves. Residents of the cities are taught from childhood to recognise things belonging to the other city without actually seeing them.