King Rat Author:China Mieville Something is stirring in London's dark, stamping out its territory in brickdust and blood. Something has murdered Saul's father, and left Saul to pay for the crime. But a shadow from the urban waste breaks into his prison cell and leads him to freedom. A shadow called King Rat. In the night-land behind London's facade, in sewers and slums and ro... more »tting dead spaces, Saul must learn his true nature. Grotesque murders rock the city like a curse. Mysterious forces prepare for a showdown. With Drum and Bass pounding the backstreets, Saul confronts his bizarre inheritance - in the badlands of South London, in the heart of darkness, at the gathering of the Junglist Massive. Like the DJ says: 'Time for the Badman.' "Tackles his theme with a dark assurance ...with its original blend of twisted urban fairytale and modern gothic horror, King Rat marks out China Mieville as an author to be watched". ("The Times"). "Brings together elements of fantasy, fairytale and the detective story ...I greatly enjoyed Mieville's weird and engaging myth-making". ("Daily Telegraph").« less
This is the antithesis of the conventional foundling story - in this world, finding out you're secretly a prince of a magical realm is the last thing you want to have happen. It's fantasy of the darkest sort, packed with rage and betrayal and people you care about dying just because they got in someone else's way. This book doesn't have quite the same richness as China Mieville's later works - mostly because of its slightly self-conscious drum-and-bass cool - but it's still better than 98% of the books out there.