Mieville’s latest is a densely written, thought-provoking and challenging story about language and communication. Avice is a compelling narrator who is aware she’s telling a story to an outside reader, and so she shapes her story accordingly. The Ariekei are satisfyingly inscrutable and alien. Highly recommended!
On a far-flung planet in the future, humans and aliens co-exist uncomfortably. The aliens, called Ariekei or Hosts, are sentient and speak a language so strange to human minds that special ambassadors must be created in utero for communication to happen. Avice Brenner Cho cannot speak Language but as a child she was made a living simile in it: the girl who ate what was given her. Returning to Embassytown after years of deep-space travel, Avice is caught up in political machinations more challenging than navigating through deep space. (DEL REY, May, 368 pp., $26.00)