Looking for Jake and Other Stories Review

Looking for Jake and Other Stories
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Looking for Jake and Other Stories ReviewChina Mieville at last releases more pieces of his talent in this collection of fourteen stories. Some have been previously released, and if you are a die-hard fan like myself you may already have them.
'Reports of Certain Events In London' was in McSweeney's Enchanted Chamber of Astonishing Stories, 'Entry From A Medical Encyclopedia' was published as 'Buscard's Murrain' in The Thackery T. Lambshead Pocket Guide To Eccentric And Discredited Diseases, and 'The Tain' is from Cities.
'Looking For Jake' did leave me slightly disappointed in some areas, namely the political undertones of 'Tis The Season' (originally published in The Socialist Review) and 'An End To Hunger', neither of which contained any real fantasy or horror, and the oddly vapid 'On The Way To The Front', an amateurish graphic piece.
There are, however, other stories in this collection that make the price worthwhile just for them.
'Familiar' is a gruesomely enchanting story of one male witch's creation run amok, 'Different Skies' takes a simple window replacement and shows us the kind of horror that can be reflected in oddness, and 'Foundation' will take you beneath the structures of everyday life and into a man's horrific ability to see the dead below them.
'Jack' is a nice addition to Mieville's 'Perdido Street Station', giving us a bit of background on his character Jack Half-A-Prayer, and 'The Tain' is a twisted tale of mirrors and what lies beyond.
If you are a rabid Mieville fan, you simply must have this book. If you are introducing yourself to Mieville, I actually recommend starting with 'Perdido Street Station' to allow yourself to fully savor this talented writer's rich offerings. Reading Mieville is like eating chocolate cheesecake, rich and satisfying and fulfilling. Enjoy!
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