A uniquely powerful novel of a society in decay. On a planet whose very nature is a mystery a massive decrepit city is pulled along a massive railway track, laying the line down before it as it progresses into the wilderness.
The society within toils under an oppressive regime, its structures always on the point of collapse, the lives of its individuals lived in misery. No one knows where they are going, why they are going or what they will find when they get there. The ending of the novel provides one of the most profound twists in SF.
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Love this book - always have
I'm a fan, so am prepared to forgive!
I would recommend this title with caveats! There is so much to love here, the world is incredibly well-realised and the writing extraordinary, as you would expect from the man who wrote The Glamour and The Prestige. But, I would advise caution, you won't get a perfectly wrapped up ending that satisfies, none of his books do that really, it's best to accept at the beginning, you're along for the journey, and it's a wonderful and extraordinary journey.
The writing and the world-building. It's a terribly claustrophobic society and I felt myself as frustrated as the people who populate it.