The Squares of the City

John Brunner
The Squares of the City Cover

Couldn't Wait...


Couldn't wait for this one to be over. Overly lengthy and rather dull. To be sure, there were some interesting moments but really, how dynamic can a book be when it is about re-designing traffic patterns in an imaginary third-world city, while the motives of the main characters are (unwittingly) based on a real-world game of chess that was played in 1892?

Perhaps I would have enjoyed this literary experiment more if I was a chess aficionado. At the end of the day, the whole premise just seemed too preposterous and it destroyed my suspension of disbelief. As a result, I could not connect with any of the characters.

I give it ??-1/2 on the strength of Brunner's writing, which was superior to the story being told.