Friday, September 26, 2014
City of Stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett
As for the book, we start off right away in the middle of a trial in a court room. I love how it started like this and introduced many of the characters through the court rather than other traditional ways. And then right away the purpose of the book is shown, a murder and the Divinities.
This is one of those books that I would never be able to talk about it out loud for fear of mispronouncing everything. The story itself takes place in Bulikov with characters like Mulaghesh and Jindash, Pangyui, etc. But regardless, the characters are still charming and intriguing. The story is a twist on the typical murder mystery genre since it also takes place in a fantasy world. The book is more than just a murder mystery, it involves many secret histories, a dystopian like aspect, plus magic (or miracles as they are called in the book).
There is a lot of world explaining and building that has to happen in this book since it is a fantasy setting, but Bennett does a good job of slowing explaining the setting and how everything came to be the way it is in Bulikov, especially the snippets at the beginning of every chapter. The world building in and of itself is a massive undertaking. There is the overarching government of Saypur and then the government within the cities like Bulikov. There is also the presence and then disappearance and killing of the Divinities. Plus the War that lead to the world being the way it is. There was a lot to build in this book, but it is done in a fantastic way that is not boring.
The ending of this book definitely leaves it open for future books, but at the same time closes this chapter in Bulikov’s history.
And while I have said this book is a fantasy, it is so much more than that. This book encompasses many different genres and is a great read. The imagery within the book is amazing, just the way everything is described is perfect. I would definitely recommend it to people looking for a unique take on a fantasy novel or people who enjoy mysteries since this has aspects of that as well.
I was given this book by BloggingForBooks in exchange for an honest review.