The Etched City by K.J. Bishop
Sometimes you worry that when you return to a book that you love that the years have not been kind to it, and that nostalgia is doing a lot of the work in your head when you think back. Now, I loved The Etched City the last time I read it, and in rereading it every great memory I had of it was reaffirmed, and I can safely say that it is still in my top ten books of the last ten years as we approach the end of the decade. The novel is dark and decadent, with lush prose, complicated characters, and a wonderful imagination. Despite knowing what happens I still didn’t want the book to end.
Bishop’s world draws you in, from its beginnings in the western-esque Copper Country, reminiscent of Moorcock’s Second Ether series, to the decaying ci... Read More
K.J. Bishop(1972- )
Kirsten J. Bishop is an Australian writer and artist. She currently resides in Thailand. In 2004, her first book, The Etched City, was nominated for a World Fantasy Award in the Best Novel category. Read extracts at K.J. Bishop’s website.
The Etched City by K.J. Bishop
The New Weird by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer
It’s easy to imagine two different readers reacting in opposite ways to The New Weird. One might find it delightfully odd; the other might find it as terrifying as Kafka on LSD. And a third might find it delightfully odd because it’s as terrifying as Kafka on LSD. Certainly, no one is likely to find it boring.
The New Weird is a well-organized anthology, with a short, useful introduction; a section entitled “Stimuli,” containing older selections (though not very old; the oldest piece, by Michael Moorcock, has an original copyright date of 1979, while the Thomas Ligotti selection was published only in 1997); “Evidence,” stories published mostly in thi... Read More
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer
I haven’t actually read every page of The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories, yet I’m giving it my highest recommendation. Edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer, Master and Mistress of Weird, The Weird is 1126 pages long and should really be considered a textbook of weird fiction. It contains 110 carefully chosen stories spanning more than 100 years of weird fiction. Here’s what you can expect to find in this massive volume:
A “Forweird” by Michael Moorcock gives us a brief history of the weird tale, discusses how it has defied publishers’ attempts to categorize it into neatly-bordered genres, and gives examples of writers who are revered by modern readers but whose weird fiction caused them to be... Read More
That Book Your Mad Ancestor Wrote — (2013) Publisher: Duellists in a decadent urban dream. Lost creatures in a bizarre post-apocalypse. Fables lingering into almost-modern worlds. From hallucinatory surrealism to human dramas at the fuzzy edges of reality, these stories and poems by the author of The Etched City are by turns exuberant, poignant, darkly funny and delightfully deranged, all showcasing the inventive magic of an acclaimed literary fantasist. Includes Aurealis Award winner The Heart of a Mouse and two stories in the world of The Etched City, one previously unpublished. “Bishop is one of my favorite writers. She is an unmatched stylist and an alarming dreamer. Like her first novel, That Book Your Mad Ancestor Wrote is an astonishment, a portfolio of wonders.” —Junot Díaz, author of The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.