BookBrowse Reviews Embassytown by China Mieville

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Embassytown

by China Mieville

Embassytown
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    May 2011, 368 pages
    Paperback:
    Jan 2012, 368 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Beverly Melven

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An intelligent sci fi novel that examines the nature of language and how we communicate

I have a confession to make. I am in love with China Miéville's brain. I think his writing is brilliant, unique, and thought-provoking to the millionth degree. He treats the English language as his tool, his toy, and his landscape, and Embassytown is a perfect example of how much he can accomplish in one book.

Avice Benner Cho grows up in a world where humans barely have an outpost, and the native population can barely communicate with them. The Ariekei's nature and language are such that it takes humans more than a century to be able to speak with them, though understanding is still limited. And while on one level this story is like a Star Trek Prime Directive fiasco (and worse than anything Kirk or Picard had to deal with), the science fiction adventure element is merely the surface. Miéville creates a world in which the characters play out the parts of a linguistics ...

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