Cities and suburbs, real and imaginary.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


With "Finch" by Jeff VanderMeer coming out on November 1st, now's an excellent time to read the first two books of the Ambergris cycle. Make no mistake about "Finch": this is one of the books of the year. I had the great pleasure of reading it early, and were I to put together a list of the best books I read this year from any time, "Finch" would easily be among the top two or three.

Now, if you haven't read any Ambergris books, now's the time to start. The crazy thing about them is they are all such completely, wildly different books. Each one of the three is a different way of looking upon the same fantasy space.

The first is probably the wildest, and most experimental, as it is at its face a collection of novellas and short stories:

The second is one of my favorite books, along with Borges' Ficciones, Pale Fire. and War and Peace. "Shriek:An Afterword" is the life story of a pair of siblings in Ambergris, through all the ups and downs they and the city face. It is reminiscent of Nabokov, in its strange way. Highly recommended.

And "Finch"? The Noir murder-mystery finale is coming November 1st.

I'll blog about it again when the time comes. Pre-ordering is a pretty good idea.

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