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Babel: Or the Necessity of Violence


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The SUNDAY TIMES and #1 NEW YORK TIMES bestseller

About the Author

Rebecca F. Kuang is a Marshall Scholar, Chinese-English translator, and the Astounding Award-winning and the Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and World Fantasy Award nominated author of the Poppy War trilogy and the forthcoming Babel. Her work has won the Crawford Award and the Compton Crook Award for Best First Novel. She has an MPhil in Chinese Studies from Cambridge and an MSc in Contemporary Chinese Studies from Oxford; she is now pursuing a PhD in East Asian Languages and Literatures at Yale.


BLACKWELL’S BOOK OF THE YEAR A WATERSTONES BOOK OF THE YEAR FINALIST DAILY MAIL BEST BOOK OF 2022 ‘Absolutely phenomenal. One of the most brilliant, razor-sharp books I've had the pleasure of reading that isn't just an alternative fantastical history, but an interrogative one; one that grabs colonial history and the Industrial Revolution, turns it over, and shakes it out’
Shannon Chakraborty, bestselling author of THE EMPIRE OF GOLD ‘A masterpiece that resonates with power and knowledge. BABEL is a stark picture of the cruelty of empire, a distillation of dark academia, and a riveting blend of fantasy and historical fiction – a monumental achievement’
Samantha Shannon, bestselling author of THE PRIORY OF THE ORANGE TREE ‘A masterpiece. Through a meticulously researched and a wholly impressive deep dive into linguistics and the politics of language and translation, Kuang weaves a story that is part love-hate letter to academia, part scathing indictment of the colonial enterprise, and all fiery revolution’
Rebecca Roanhorse, NYT bestselling author of BLACK SUN ‘Kuang has outdone herself. BABEL is brilliant, vicious, sensitive, epic, and intimate; it's both a love letter and a declaration of war. It's a perfect book’
Alix E. Harrow, bestselling author of A THOUSAND DOORS OF JANUARY ‘A book that confirms Kuang as a major talent’
SFX ‘Brainy, brilliant, and fuelled by righteous anger, Babel is a towering tour-de-force of fantasy’
DAILY MAIL ‘BABEL has earned tremendous praise and deserves all of it. It’s Philip Pullman’s THE GOLDEN COMPASS by way of N.K. Jemisin’s THE FIFTH SEASON: inventive and engaging, passionate and precise’

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