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Babel

Or the Necessity of Violence: An Arcane History of the Oxford Translators' Revolution

Author: R.F. Kuang  

Paperback

SUNDAY TIMES and #1 NYT bestseller and most anticipated fantasy book of 2022

'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, author of THE PRIORY OF THE ORANGE TREE

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Summary

SUNDAY TIMES and #1 NYT bestseller and most anticipated fantasy book of 2022

'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, author of THE PRIORY OF THE ORANGE TREE

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Description

Samantha Shannon, author of THE PRIORY OF THE ORANGE TREE Traduttore, traditore: An act of translation is always an act of betrayal.

Oxford, 1836.

The city of dreaming spires.

It is the centre of all knowledge and progress in the world.

And at its centre is Babel, the Royal Institute of Translation. The tower from which all the power of the Empire flows.

Orphaned in Canton and brought to England by a mysterious guardian, Babel seemed like paradise to Robin Swift.

Until it became a prison…

But can a student stand against an empire?

An incendiary new novel from award-winning author R.F. Kuang about the power of language, the violence of colonialism, and the sacrifices of resistance.

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Critic Reviews

“PRAISE FOR THE POPPY WAR:

'An outstanding debut' DAILY MAIL

'A book that will go down as one of the best grimdark/military fantasy debuts of all time' BOOKNEST

'A masterpiece by grimdark's newest and perhaps darkest daughter' FANTASY BOOK REVIEW 'A wholly unique experience' THE WASHINGTON POST

'R.F. Kuang's fresh approach to magic and hard-hitting story is a punch to the gut fantasy has needed for a long time. I can't wait for THE DRAGON REPUBLIC' Peter V. Brett, bestselling author of The Demon Cycle

'Enthralling from start to finish ... I thought myself prepared. I was now. R.F. Kuang's debut is a masterful must-read, and I've no doubt the best is yet to come' Nicholas Eames, author of KINGS OF THE WYLD

'A blistering, powerful epic of war and revenge that will captivate you to the bitter end' Kameron Hurley, author of THE LIGHT BRIDAGE

'Fresh, assured, character-driven fantasy that's choc full of magic, war, and betrayal. I loved it from start to finish' Peter Newman, author of THE VAGRANT

'A powerful, emotional journey, compellingly written' Adrian Tchaikovsky, award-winning author of THE CHILDREN OF TIME

'An original and engrossing tale of the coming of age of a talented young soldier amid the horrors of invasion and genocide' Anna Stephens, author of GODBLIND

'I so enjoyed The Poppy War by R. F. Kuang ... It is all about survival, and how a person's will and determination can change the course of their life. I loved the central character, felt her pain and her far-too-brief moments of joy, and just loved how Kuang breathes fresh life into the warrior training school ... Highly recommended' John Gwynne, author of MALICE”

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
NEW YORK TIMES

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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.

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Product Details

Publisher
Harpercollins Publishers | HarperVoyager
Published
7th September 2022
Pages
560
ISBN
9780008501822

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