…the other was a torso, jutted from the bicycle itself, its moving prow, a figurehead where handlebars should be. She was extruded from the metal. She pushed her arms backward and they curled at the ends like coral. She stretched her neck and widened her eyes.
Thibault swallowed and tried to speak, and tried again, and screamed, “It’s the Vélo!”
Just a novella this week, but that’s okay because there’s enough glorious weirdness in China Mieville’s latest work to fill a whole novel.
The story begins with the sound of gunfire. German soldiers scatter as they’re attacked by a creature in the shape of a woman merged with a bicycle. Even stranger, the reaction of the French Resistance fighters watching is less Dear God What Is That Thing, and more Look Out, It’s Another One.
The Last Days of New Paris is set in an alternate history version of Nazi-occupied Paris, where an unexplained event, the S-Blast, has somehow tapped into the soul of the Surrealism movement. Now images from works by Max Ernst, André Breton, Yves Tanguy, and hundreds more are stalking the streets, while demons called from Hell reluctantly follow the German soldiers’ orders, and the very landscape of Paris has been twisted into something impossible.