The City We Became

The City We Became
By N. K. Jemisin

N. K. Jemisin, author of the award-winning Broken Earth novels, gets another series started in this fantasy tale of a New York City that is coming to life in a strange new way.

In some parallel reality, of which most of us are unaware, cities have individual human avatars or champions, with names that reflect this status. So Paulo is (not “is from”) Sao Paulo and the boroughs of NYC are represented by Manny (Manhattan), Bronca (the Bronx), etc.

These avatars and their hometowns are in turn threatened by an Enemy (capitalized) torn from the pages of H. P. Lovecraft. Which means you can expect a lot of CGI-style action that whips along at breakneck speed, flavoured throughout with Jemisin’s aggressive politics. But even as a standard-bearer for woke SF (this novel is an outgrowth of a story that appeared in her collection How Long ‘Til Black Future Month?), Jemisin can lay the preaching on pretty thick. The chief Enemy here is even a monstrous Woman in White (or Dr. White), who has plans for gentrifying the Big Apple. Not if you love New York!

2 thoughts on “The City We Became

    1. I would rate it subpar, yes. This brand of what I think of as CGI fiction is feeling played out, and the politics here is very heavy-handed (the multi-ethnic band of heroes against the forces of whiteness).

      Liked by 1 person

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