He’s too cool for me. Just look at him. A better version of Christopher Eccleston, with his shaved head, and ice blue eyes. Pierced, tatted. Studied at the London School of Economics, and wrote his PhD thesis on a Marxist theory of international law. Then he went back to his geeky, D&D playing, monster-loving roots, and started writing truly interesting books, exploring all genres, while breaking some of them. To read China Miéville is to embrace something wild and wonderful, to not be comfortable, but to be thoroughly engaged.
When I wrote “all genres,” I meant it.* Un Lun Dun was Miéville’s young adult novel. Essentially it’s The Phantom Tollbooth meets Alice in Wonderland meets any Tim Burton movie meets the underbelly of the toxic pollution of London. I bought the book for Conor to read. I don’t think he ever did, so I stole it back, devoured it, and keep it on my shelves. Someday, perhaps I’ll gift it to a child of his. Perhaps.
* Although most of his books have an element of science fiction, he has written within the genres of American westerns, steam punk, space exploration, detective noir, young adult, and sea-faring (think Moby Dick melded with Mutiny on the Bounty). Other of his books defy genre and are categorized as weird fiction or urban surrealism. He doesn’t give a damn about any of this. Again, look at his picture.