The jacket description for the US edition of China Miéville’s new collection, Three Moments of an Explosion: Stories, is now up on the publisher’s website. It’s different to the UK description, and reveals a little more about the upcoming book!
The fiction of multiple award–winning author China Miéville is powered by intelligence and imagination. Like George Saunders, Karen Russell, and David Mitchell, he pulls from a variety of genres with equal facility, employing the fantastic not to escape from reality but instead to interrogate it in provocative, unexpected ways.
London awakes one morning to find itself besieged by a sky full of floating icebergs. Destroyed oil rigs, mysteriously reborn, clamber from the sea and onto the land, driven by an obscure but violent purpose. An anatomy student cuts open a cadaver to discover impossibly intricate designs carved into a corpse’s bones—designs clearly present from birth, bearing mute testimony to . . . what?
Of such concepts and unforgettable images are made the twenty-eight stories in this collection—many published here for the first time. By turns speculative, satirical, and heart-wrenching, fresh in form and language, and featuring a cast of damaged yet hopeful seekers who come face-to-face with the deep weirdness of the world—and at times the deeper weirdness of themselves—Three Moments of an Explosion is a fitting showcase for one of our most original voices.
The stories mentioned in the second paragraph are, in order, “Polynia”, “Covehithe”, and “The Design”. Nothing new or revelatory there. But the third paragraph contains the most exciting news: this book will have 28 stories! That’s immense. It’s twice as many as China’s first collection, Looking For Jake, had. If the previous reports that only seven of the stories would be previously published ones are true, then that’s 21 never-before-seen stories. Clearly Miéville has been busy in the three-year wait since Railsea! This seems like it will be a very meaty collection, and I am totally stoked.
Now, as for the matter of new Bas-Lag content… We’ve now seen the official marketing descriptions written by both publishers, and there’s no mention of Bas-Lag. Considering the popularity of those books, I would assume that if there was a new story set in that world, then it would be fairly prominent in the description. It would be big news! Alas, I think that now we can pretty much count it out.
But there’s still so much to celebrate with 28 stories coming our way this July (or August in the US)!