Monday, December 31, 2007

What Mrs. N's Been Reading - Un Lun Dun

Just finished China Mieville's Un Lun Dun transport themselves to an alternate city inhabited by some very different folks - feral trash, the tailor who keeps his needles in his head and makes clothing from books, . I generally like fantasy novels, but occasionally start to feel like all of the fantasy worlds are pretty much the same - dragons, dwarfs, elves, etc. Mieville gets a lot of credit in my book for making his world, very, very different. Two girls accidentallysmombies, etc. The city itself was very well imagined as well with buildings made of discarded appliances, and a street where the buildings keep rearranging. As I was reading this, I kept thinking that, in the right hands, this would make a fantastic movie, especially an animated one. I almost hesitate to bring that thought up, after what filmmakers have done to some wonderful books lately. Stormbreaker was probably the worst (What could Anthony Horowitz possibly been thinking!), but friends and family tell me The Golden Compass was pretty awful, too.) But, boy, in the right hands this one could be really cool. Mieville also did a great job putting some different twists on the standard fantasy plot. Yes, there were prophecies about a girl who would save the city, but what if, from the very beginning, the prophecies seem to be completely wrong? Can you alter destiny? If some of the prophecies are wrong, are they all wrong? I enjoyed this one. The plot wasn't particularly heavy duty, but things moved along nicely, with some things you could try to guess ahead of time, but enough twists to hold your interest. And if you have a vivid imagination, you'll really enjoy visualizing Mieville's fantasy world. I give this one a thumbs-up. Check it out! Oh, and have a happy, healthy and productive new year!

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