The Last Days of New Paris
In a unique take on history, The Last Days of New Paris follows the adventures of Thibault in the aftermath of an unusual bomb.
After Paris falls to the Germans in 1940, the S-bomb is dropped. The S-bomb is a strange device that shatters the barrier between art, hell, and Earth. The result is New Paris—Paris populated by surrealist rebels, Nazis, manifs, and demons. Manifs are manifestations of recognizable surrealist paintings and other creative works. Thibault, a surrealist soldier, somehow is able to resist the manifs and joins forces with a journalist to document everything.
The Last Days of New Paris is hauntingly poetic, strangely beautiful, and erratically intense. It is a difficult work to describe as Mieville’s writing lends the story a fever dream quality that balances out the violent action and twisty story. The story alternates between post S-bomb and the events leading up to the creation/activation of the S-bomb. The characters, especially Sam the journalist, are vividly drawn into life. This is a book that deftly balances thumping action with quiet contemplation. Thanks to its brevity, The Last Days of New Paris is a surreal read that needs to be experienced.