Three Moments of an Explosion, by China Mieville
I'm afraid that I just don't get it. China Mieville is a hugely popular science fiction writer, a well-respected author and denizen of countless "best of" lists. And I just don't see it. This is the second book of his that failed to sustain my interest more than halfway through. These are short stories, which I normally love, but they seem so haphazard. It's as though Mieville's agent called him up with a demand for a new book and he said, well, I've got these bits and pieces that have never amounted to much, I guess I'll just throw them all together and call it a collection. There's no coherent thread or theme, that I can tell, at least. The stories themselves are all basically set pieces instead of real, whole stories. They are descriptors, beginning chapters of books that never quite made it. And they're kind of boring, to boot. Mieville's most famous is "Perdido Street Station," which I've never read, so perhaps I need to open that book up to see what all the fuss is about. This particular offering leaves me cold.