The White City

The White City For centuries the White City has graced the banks of the Moskva River But in the early years of a twentieth century not quite analogous to our own a creature even ancient than Moscow s fortress hear

  • Title: The White City
  • Author: Elizabeth Bear
  • ISBN: 9781596063235
  • Page: 445
  • Format: Hardcover
  • For centuries, the White City has graced the banks of the Moskva River But in the early years of a twentieth century not quite analogous to our own, a creature even ancient than Moscow s fortress heart has entered its medieval walls.In the wake of political success and personal loss, the immortal detective Don Sebastien de Ulloa has come to Moscow to choose his pathFor centuries, the White City has graced the banks of the Moskva River But in the early years of a twentieth century not quite analogous to our own, a creature even ancient than Moscow s fortress heart has entered its medieval walls.In the wake of political success and personal loss, the immortal detective Don Sebastien de Ulloa has come to Moscow to choose his path amid the embers of war between England and her American colonies Accompanied by his court the forensic sorcerer Lady Abigail Irene and the authoress Phoebe Smith he seeks nothing but healing and rest.But Moscow is both jeweled and corrupt, and when you are old there is no place free of ghosts, and Sebastien is far from the most ancient thing in Russia.

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      Published :2020-01-11T23:36:29+00:00

    About “Elizabeth Bear”

    1. Elizabeth Bear

      What really needs is a currently WRITING option for its default bookshelves

    174 thoughts on “The White City”

    1. Rating: 4* of five The Book Description: For centuries, the White City has graced the banks of the Moskva River. But in the early years of a twentieth century not quite analogous to our own, a creature even more ancient than Moscow’s fortress heart has entered its medieval walls.In the wake of political success and personal loss, the immortal detective Don Sebastien de Ulloa has come to Moscow to choose his path amid the embers of war between England and her American colonies. Accompanied by h [...]


    2. Warning! This is a review containing spoilers! Not just for this book, but also MASSIVE spoilers for New Amsterdam (and maybe Seven for a Secret, too.) *****I really didn't want to give this book five stars. I have hard feelings against the author because of the way she killed Jack in New Amsterdam. He was my favorite character in the book. While I understand the things she has publicly stated about her intentions regarding the book, and regarding Sebastien's character arc and the supposed neces [...]


    3. For centuries, the White City has graced the banks of the Moskva River. But in the early years of a twentieth century not quite analogous to our own, a creature even more ancient than Moscow's fortress heart has entered its medieval walls.In the wake of political success and personal loss, the immortal detective Don Sebastien de Ulloa has come to Moscow to choose his path amid the embers of war between England and her American colonies. Accompanied by his court--the forensic sorcerer Lady Abigai [...]


    4. I will read this again in a week or so. I feel like I'm missing something. Also, I didn't know it was part of a series, that may explain some my confusion. I really enjoyed the setting - turn of the century Russia. And one of the reasons I keep returning to her books is for her characters, their complex relationships and motivations aren't easily defined, and I like that!



    5. This is the third book published in Bear's New Amsterdam series; it is the second in chronological order; and while it's helpful to have the background from the previous books, it isn't strictly necessary. Like Dorothy Sayers' Peter Wimsey novels, the characters grow over the course of the series, but each book has a stand-alone mystery that is the focus of its primary plot. Also like the Wimsey novels, the mysteries are completely fair and not terribly twisty, but they aren't the reason I can p [...]


    6. (originally reviewed on starmetal oak book blog) This novella takes place in Bear's New Amsterdam world. I haven't read this author or that collection yet, so this is doubly new to me. This is published after New Amsterdam, and although I didn't find it confusing, it might be better to read its predecessor first.Bear has created a unique and intriguing world, taking place at the turn of the 20th century. In this world, there exist vampires, one of which is Don Sebastien de Ulloa. Each vampire ha [...]


    7. In this double-stranded edition of Bear's New Amsterdam tales, the wampyr Don Sebastian de Ulloa takes his court to Moscow both before and after the events in New Amsterdam and Paris, and both visits are marked by murder. The stories are interwoven, and the second finds his court marked by grief, so this may not be the best place to start (try 'New Amsterdam' for that), but if you like the structure it's well worth the time. Unlike the other books I've read in the New Amsterdam sequence, this is [...]


    8. I love the cover for The White City (December 31, 2010). This was the first of the three stories in the New Amsterdam series that I purchased because it called to me. I read the series in chronological order of events and read this book after I finished New Amsterdam. The series really flows better that way in my opinion. The White City is set in Moscow and believe me the setting is gorgeous! After the events that chased Sebastien and his court from New Amsterdam and the terrible loss experience [...]


    9. This is a revisiting of the characters from New Amsterdam- Don Sebastien the vampire and his two human followers, Abby Irene Garrett and Phoebe Smith. The book takes place in Moscow, flipping between the years 1897 and 1903. Usually there's some mystery or investigation involved with these characters, and the mystery is rather slight. However, the setting is amazingly rich and I enjoyed the story for that more than anything else. Abby Irene gets to do a bit of sorcerous investigation, and Don Se [...]


    10. Another novella in the New Amsterdam series. This one takes the form of two interconnected short stories - one in which Sebastien and a sixteen-year-old Jack visit Moscow together and make the acquaintance of an artist named Irina, and one in which Sebastien revisits the city six years later (shortly after (view spoiler)[Jack's death (hide spoiler)]) with Abby Irene and Phoebe. Both times there is a murder in Irina's circle of acquaintances, and Sebastien and his court attempt to figure out what [...]


    11. This is my favorite of the books set in the world of New Amsterdam so far. Chronologically, it takes place after New Amsterdam and before Seven for a Secret, and if you haven't read any of the books yet, I would read them in chronological order as opposed to the order in which they were published. Once of my favorite things about this series is the world in which it is set, and this book gives us a fascinating glimpse into the Russia of this world, especially Moscow and its environs. There are a [...]


    12. I really wanted to like this novel more, given that the prose style is very pretty and mildly baroque, and Bear does an excellent job of setting a scene when she thinks it's worthwhile to do so. But it was just too slight and oblique, with too much left out. It's sort of a murder mystery, but I kept getting the impression that Bear was more interested in describing Moscow and her characters than in the story; she'll go from a detailed description of a character's feelings in a moment to a bare-b [...]


    13. 3.5I think this is my favorite in the series so far. We flit between two time periods in this story, 1897 and 1903, both in Moscow, and both about murders surrounding a woman named Irina.My favorite part of this story is that we see more of Jack and his and Sebastian's relationship, which also gives more depth to Sebastian than some of what we've seen before. They definitely have an interesting and complicated relationship.It was also nice to see more of Abbey Irene still active as a detective, [...]


    14. Very good read if a bit short. I've had a hot and cold relationship with Elizabeth Bear. Other books I have picked up have been written marvelously but with such beautiful language that I had trouble following the plot. The book was not like that at all.The basic plot is a murder mystery set in two different times in Moscow, 1897 and 1903. The characters were at first familiar cliches which get fleshed out as the story progresses, my two favorites were a vampire detective (similar to Sherlock Ho [...]


    15. Another entry in Bear's steampunk/vampires/lady detective genre-mishmash series, which I have previously enjoyed. Maybe it's been too long since I read the previous books, but this one just fell vey flat for me. The main problem was the lack of danger/compelling mystery; I never felt like any of the main characters had much at stake, and the mystery itself was quite generic. The secondary problem was that half of the narration was focused on the perspective of Jack, who is extremely bland compar [...]


    16. This series is such a consistent pleasure: fin de siècle depravity in a slightly different Europe, an excellent female lead, realistically complicated relationships, and beautiful writing. I was disappointed that this novella was so short.Reading it right after Amanda Downum did bring home the similarities between the latter’s Isyllt and Bear’s Abigail Irene—they’re both forensic investigators who use magic and have very complicated personal lives. The cross-pollination is unsurprising, [...]


    17. This paranormal who-dunnit is told through alternating chapters of flashback and present. This is one of the reasons I enjoy novellas as many authors will play around with format and/or style. One might think that the format is contrived, but it flows beautifully. The flashbacks not only fill out the plot, but they give us insight into the deep connections the characters have to one another. It's quite moving. I have read two novellas in this series, and plan to seek out the rest. I want to spen [...]


    18. I like Elizabeth Bear's work a lot and there is much to admire in this short novel that again explores the world of Sebastian, the vampire (or wampyr), and his sorceress friend, Abby, in a universe where magic is real as are vampires and America's revolution comes in the late 19th century and in the 1930's, Prussia has conquered Britain and the royal family is in exile in New Amsterdam.The texture of the world is rich. Yet, I felt like I was an outsider. I wondered if I hadn't read her last stor [...]


    19. I have a soft spot for the subtle sensuality of Don Sebastien and his court, and this tale of two murder set six years apart was both beautifully paced and written. I am also delighted to see Jack reappearing in the novel, though I feel like perhaps the strength of his relationship with Phoebe may have been overplayed. I do not recall such a big deal being made out of them in New Amsterdam.Although, then again, Phoebe never really endeared herself to me the way Sebastien, Jack and Abby Irene did [...]


    20. Really enjoyed this, the first recently-published vampire novel I have read in a long time that didn't make me think 'superhero-with-fangs'. It's clear the characters have history with each other because of their interactions, not because of a number on the cover - it is apparently #3 of a series, but stood quite well alone and thankfully isn't trumpeted as such. Definitely intrigued enough to track down the companion volumes. A well and subtly-drawn alternate world.


    21. Noirish vampire detective well into his second millenium investigates two murders in pre-Revolutionary Moscow. Our hero Sebastien meditates engagingly on the ramifications of being both undead and parasitical as a way of life. The rings that are blood-bonds and telltale clues are a memorable detail in Bear's construction of his court life.I am more attracted to this wing of urban fantasy than to its sex-with-monsters variations. Not that there's anything wrong with those variations.


    22. Forensic sorcerer Garrett (no longer employed by the British crown) and the vampire detective Sebastian arrive in Moscow. The murder mystery is above average for the series and is intertwined with flashbacks a crime in an earlier trip Sebastian. The only honest policeman in Moscow, a revolutionary artist and Phoebe Smith also appear. Throw in a much grander sense of time and vampiric immortality than in other entries and there's nothing to complain about other than it ending to soon.


    23. This is a rather sad but quite beautiful book about loneliness. I would prefer to give it 3.5 stars because, in a way, only awarding it three is slightly unkind. But for all the story itself it engaging, I do have slight problems with the language in which it is written.This is for those of you who enjoy a more thoughtful approach to vampires and their existences.opionator.wordpress/2011/0


    24. The vampires are much more figures of pity than horror in this alternative universe of magic and steam power. The author captures the lose of humanity for the undead and the pain a thousand or more years of loosing people and places to which you become attached.This takes place in early 1900s Russia with flashback to the late 1800s, and if basicly a murder mystery although it reveals the structure of vampire life who are just members of this society. Gothic feel without romancing vampires.


    25. I was drawn to the cover of this book in the science fiction section of my local library and whilst I definitely found it an enjoyable read it belongs under paranormal / historical fantasy rather than Sci Fi.I found the basic story set in the late 19th / early 20th Century Russia to be a very unique take on a vampire tale but found the spelling of vampire (wampyr) and the flitting back and forth between years a little hard to follow at times. V""V


    26. It was pretty good, although a little short. Apparently this is the second in a series, so I felt a little lost, but it was easy to get into the story. I chose this book at random, so at first I groaned when it was about vampires HOWEVER, the author's take on the subject is unique and doesn't involve sparkly teenagers.


    27. This might be my new favorite vampire novel of all time. It's a jewel of a book. Every word and scene is polished and beautiful and wicked sharp. The mystery is engaging and smart without feeling forced or overshadowing the emotional drama that the characters endure. I cannot praise this book enough.


    28. A melancholy book about a very old wampyr who can't help but love humans and suffer as they age and die. There are also two murder mysteries to solve, but you will catch on to those early on. Beautiful language and topics worth thinking about. Not my favorite of her books. Like another reader, I'm still sad about Jack dying.


    29. This story is essentially a murder mystery. Although the main character is a vampire, it really skirts around vampire mythos. The writing style of the author is very interesting, but there is very little character developement and I really just felt like an observer from afar, rather than being pulled into the story as if the characters were personal friends.


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