Wednesday, 8 September 2010

URBAN FANTASY REVIEW: Zoo City - Lauren Beukes

Release Date: 02/09/10


ZINZI DECEMBER FINDS PEOPLE. Even if they don't want to be found - like missing pop starlet Songweza. Trouble is, when you go turning over stones and digging up secrets it isn't long before the real truth comes to light. A truth the local crime lord, dark magician and beast master, will kill to keep hidden. In Lauren Beukes' shattered city, magic is horribly real and the criminal classes sport symbiotically linked animals. A stunningly original urban fantasy.


Writing a review of an area of the world that I’m only familiar with from what appears in the news is always tricky, so I had a word with a friend of mine who recently moved back to do some background checks to see if what I was reading was correct. After confirmation of some of the pieces within the context of the story, it helped me to visualise the world and to see the adaptations that Lauren had added to make it a world of her own.

The character, whilst the protagonist, was also partly antihero which made them interesting as well as fascinating to hang around, it meant that most of the rules pertaining to the actions of such characters were completely banned and anything could and does happen. It’s definitely something new and whilst I wasn’t the biggest fan of Moxyland (when I eventually managed to get my hands on it) I could definitely appreciate the work within.

Overall, this title definitely has not only an interesting story but a solid story arc and with a rich background of magic interwoven between the pages it was one that did keep me reading to the final page. Whilst it won’t make my top ten of Urban Fantasy titles this year, I can appreciate the high standards to which the author has held herself alongside the hard work weaving the elements together for an overall satisfactory read.

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