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Un Lun Dun Paperback – 6 May 2011


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Product details

  • Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Pan (6 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330536680
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330536684
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 4.3 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 412,910 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

China Miéville lives and works in London. He is three-time winner of the prestigious Arthur C. Clarke Award (Perdido Street Station, Iron Council and The City & The City) and has also won the British Fantasy Award twice (Perdido Street Station and The Scar). The City & The City, an existential thriller, was published in 2009 to dazzling critical acclaim and drew comparison with the works of Kafka and Orwell (The Times) and Philip K. Dick (Guardian).

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Review

'A modern day Alice in Wonderland, this is where the New Weird is at...' -- Death Ray

'It's funny and it's frightening...The characters are wondrous...' -- Fortean Times --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

The iron wheel began to spin, slowly at first, then faster and faster. The room grew darker. As the light lessened, so did the sound. Deeba and Zanna stared at each other in wonder. The noise of the cars and vans and motorbikes outside grew tinny . . . The wheel turned off all the cars and turned off all the lamps. It was turning off London. Zanna and Deeba are two girls leading ordinary lives, until they stumble into the world of UnLondon, an urban Wonderland where all the lost and broken things of London end up . . . and some of its lost and broken people too. Here discarded umbrellas stalk with spidery menace, carnivorous giraffes roam the streets, and a jungle sprawls beyond the door of an ordinary house. UnLondon is under siege by the sinister Smog and its stink-junkie slaves; it is a city awaiting its hero. Guided by a magic book that can’t quite get its facts straight, and pursued by Hemi the half-ghost boy, the girls set out to stop the poisonous cloud before it burns everything in its path. They are joined in their quest by a motley band of UnLondon locals, including Brokkenbroll, boss of the broken umbrellas, Obaday Fing, a couturier whose head is an enormous pincushion, and an empty milk carton called Curdle . . . and you thought a trip down the rabbit hole was a little out of the ordinary. The world of UnLondon is populated by astonishing frights and delights that will thrill the imagination. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 29 people found the following review helpful By A. Whitehead TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 8 Jun 2007
Format: Hardcover
Un Lun Dun is the fifth novel by British fantasy author China Mieville. Mieville has become the guiding light of the 'New Weird' fantasy movement which has become a major force in the genre in the last few years, and in his Bas-Lag novels he's created a compellingly different secondary world mixing elements of fantasy and steampunk to good effect. However, in this latest book Mieville takes a break from Bas-Lag to instead write and illustrate his first novel for younger readers. Given that Mieville's adult work has a grotesque fairy-tale quality to it, this isn't as strange a move as it first seems, and his writing and the subject matter turn out to be a winning combination.

Another world lies beyong this one, separated from it by immense distance but at the same time accessible through cracks in reality. Each city in our world has its own reflection or 'abcity' in this other world. The great metropolis of London is shadowed by UnLondon, a city of the dispossessed and the magical, a city under threat by a sinister force known only as the Smog. Into this world come two young girls, Deeba and Zanna, whose coming has long been foretold. They are prophecised to save UnLondon from the Smog, but there is one snag: they haven't a clue how they're going to do it.

Un Lun Dun opens with Mieville on slightly shaky ground, betraying a slight lack of confidence in tackling this new audience (particularly in his handling of how streetwise London kids talk and interact). Perhaps aware this isn't his natural element, he very quickly hurls his characters into the streets of UnLondon and unleashes his fertile imagination in full force, rapidly ensnaring our protagonists in a very strange but at the same time familiar landscape populated by all manner of weird and wonderful creatures.
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26 of 30 people found the following review helpful By kehs TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 4 April 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Deeba and Zanna discover a wheel in a basement, Zenna turns it and realizes that something weird is happening - London is being switched off! Zanna and Deeba are two best friends and they find themselves in the world of UnLondon, a place where London's discarded things somehow end up. UnLondon is under siege by the sinister Smog (a poisonous cloud) and is waiting for its saviour to arrive as prophesised by their magic book that can speak. Guided by this book the girls have to try and put an end to the poisonous cloud. A crew of UnLondon locals, the likes of which you will have never dreamed, joins them in their quest! UnLondon is more than a little unusual but an absolute wonder to read about.

If you love Neil Gaiman (especially Neverwhere), Terry Pratchett and Lewis Carroll then this book will be a particular delight for you
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27 of 32 people found the following review helpful By P. Forbes on 5 May 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Having just read the disappointing Iron Council I was happily very impressed with Un Lun Dun. It's supposed to be a children's book but me at 43 years old truly enjoyed this fantastic fantasy adventure. It's 520 pages long (in hard back) but it's so exciting that if you pick this book up you'll fly through it in no time. This is the first book I've ever read that at the end of it I wanted to start it all over again! China Miéville is a real great talent. For the adults out there I also recommended his Bas Lag novels "The Scar" and "Perdido Street Station", which is one of my favourite novels of all time. But those novels are definitely not for children. I've given "Un Lun Dun" Five out of five. Go get it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By billythekid on 15 April 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
This book i found to be very good i enjoyed the story from the start its wonderfull. Ill update when i finsh i will be getting more by this aurther thank you leila
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 7 Jun 2009
Format: Paperback
"In an unremarkable room, in a nondescript building, a man sat working on very nondescript theories..."

It's a determinedly unremarkable beginning for a very unique, very bizarre fantasy book, but I guess you can expect no less from fantasy's current prince of the bizarre, China Mieville. His oddly-named children's book "Un Lun Dun" immediately immerses the reader in a vaguely Gaimanesque glimpse into another world, with vaguely sinister, colourful prose and a likable cast of very odd characters.

Twelve-year-old Zanna is being followed by weird things -- odd graffiti, moving umbrellas, fearless foxes, and malevolent smoke. But their search for answers leads them to a strange otherworld with a holey sun and bizarre inhuman inhabitants, known as Un Lun Dun (Un-London, get it?) -- where discarded or lost things are sent. Like any such heroine, Zanna and her friend Deeba are mainly interested in getting home... but of course, it's not that simple.

Turns out that Zanna is the Shwazzy (the required chosen one) and there's a prophecy about her (natch), and how she has to destroy the Smog -- the coagulated remains of all that was bad, which can only be destroyed by the magical Klinneract. The girls set out to stop the Smog, and suffer some fairly nasty setbacks in their battle against it. They'll try their best -- but Zanna may not be quite up to fulfilling the prophecy.

Pincushion-headed tailors, fly-riding pirates, flesh-eating giraffes, ninja dustbins, pet milk cartons, walking lobsters and attacks from trashbags -- China Mieville has a knack for taking the ordinary, and twisting it just enough that it becomes wonderfully grotesque.
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