With City of Stairs, author Robert Jackson Bennett has crafted a world that works on so many different levels of crazy, a world whose physics contain so many impossible variables, a world split between realities, and somehow it all comes off rather magnificently. This is worldbuilding at its absolute finest, and it’s a wonderful story to boot.
The Continent was once inhabited by a pantheon of gods, all very different beings with different morals entirely, capable of any number of unexplainable miracles and creative properties. They were gods of the Continentals, who in turn enslaved the people of Saypur who had no gods. These gods helped create wondrous landmarks and cities. The greatest of these cities, Bulikov (known as the city of stairs), was an amalgam work of all the gods. And then came the Blink, a moment in time where, due to the cunning of a certain Saypuri titled…
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