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Looked forward to reading more by Daniel Polansky, after loving The Builders, and am very happy to have found A City Dreaming. This was an unusual, fascinating book and one I enjoyed from start to finish. The style is laid back, generally mellow, the prose is a pleasure and the strange, cleverly drawn character of M appealed to me from the start..
A clever mixture of magical realism and urban fantasy,.with no conventional plot line. Instead a series of chapters in the life of M, living in a New York where monsters and magical creatures mingle amongst the locals. We gradually get to know more about M's particular circle of friends, and the various tasks, adventures and pleasures shared are fascinating, weird, imaginative and non stop entertaining.
M is lazy, pleasure loving, morally flexible and can be deliberately irritating, but somehow always the one who gets called if someone is in trouble, or has a problem. He has magical powers which he uses gently or harshly, depending on circumstance. M remains a mystery and that is fine by me, I don't want him analysed, just hope he is around somewhere still.
A City Dreaming is also a long love letter to New York, shown in so many of it's complexities, diversity and idiosyncrasies. I laughed about the invasion of the coffee shops, and many
other humourous happenings, but this is balanced by episodes of cruelty and horror. Only fair because any great city has it's dark, vile underside. If you are a New Yorker you will enjoy extra subtleties and nuances, but this does not make it any the less enjoyable for those of us who have only dreamed of visiting.
Eric Meyers is a new narrator to me and I am glad to have discovered his talent here. He added to my enjoyment of this excellent book which will remain a long term favourite of mine. (less)