Am reading what must by now be “fantasy classic” Perdido Street Station and I just want to mention what a great relief it is to read a story that isn’t about kings, queens, emperors, el presidentes* or any other type of monarch or strongman. Is it that China Miéville is a Marxist? Perhaps in the socialist utopia, you don’t have to write about 15-year-old princes and princesses anymore.
* Fantasy has a distinct lack of dictators, though, doesn’t it? Or rather, there are a lot of dictators, but they all have some sort of magic jewel or sword that allows them to unleash terrible violence and prove their worth to rule over everybody else, so they’re not evil dictators somehow. And usually that magic macguffin can only be used by members of a certain family–basically monarchy propped up forever by extreme genetic power. Like Hapsburg Spain with psychic nuclear bombs. That actually sounds like hell on earth, I wonder why the “anointed leader” fantasy is still so popular?