Books (or movies or games) about a weird city

I’m not looking for a particular book, just books about the general idea of what if a weird city. Like, I really like Perdido Street Station by China Mieville, or The City and the City by China Mieville. I guess anything by China Mieville really. I also like Lovecraftian stuff (though maybe not Lovecraft himself…) The city doesn’t even have to be that weird: I just read After Dark by Haruki Murakami and really like regular cities where weird stuff happens at night.

I’m mostly listing books, but I’d love to know about movies or games that have weird cities.

Pathologic 2

ah never mind, I don‘t think this is what you’re looking for. Pathologic is about a town, not a city, it's a different beast

i‘ve also read all the books you mention here, and i’ll tell you what: you might want to give Bloodborne a look!

Sorry for stating the obvious but someone’s gotta: the film Dark City

Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino is about many weird cities! Great book and a quick read too.

I enjoyed City of Stairs. As the name implies it is set in a city. The city is quite interesting as well, but the overall world is what I enjoyed the most. it is set in a universe that used to have very real, interventionist deities until someone managed to kill them leading to a total reorganization of the political order. The book is set some 70 years after this. It‘s sequel City of Blades is overall a stronger book and quite different, although I’m not sure if I actually liked it more than the first one. I‘m also not so sure how I feel about the final book, although I found it to be overall weaker than the prior two. However, each book is self-contained and doesn’t require you to read any further in the trilogy.

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers

(thinking through the handful of Books i have read) 100 Years of Solitude is about a city. “The Town” in Hard Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World is a weird town for sure

Pathologic 2 is 1000% what you're looking for as far as games go

for books....

I'd put _Dhalgren_ by Samuel R Delaney at the top of your list


The _Viriconium_ books by M John Harrison
_The Twenty Days Of Turin_ by Giorgio De Maria

for weird but real cities you'd probably like a number of Ian Sinclair books

also _The Seven Madmen_ and _The Flamethrowers_ by Roberto Arlt

I'll think of more!

The Glass Key by Dashiell Hammett

I havent read it but there's Only Forward by Michael Marshall Smith

Also _62: A Model Kit_ by Julio Cortázar. _Hopscotch_ has some good weird Paris in it too

_Inverted World_ Christopher Priest


@“captain”#p60279 Pathologic 2

I do like me a weird town too, but you're right they are kinda different. Still, I bought Pathologic 2 a while back, maybe I'll finally give it a shot.


@“whatsarobot”#p60283 you might want to give Bloodborne a look!

Yeahhhhh Yharnam is a good ass weird city.


@“rejj”#p60293 the film Dark City

Honestly that may be what turned me on to weird cities in the first place. Love me some Dark City.

And thanks everybody for all the suggestions, I've started looking into them and there are some really interesting ones.

it‘s been a while since i read it, but as i recall baudolino is filled with weird cities. it’s pure medieval mindset weirdness dizzyingly rendered, which sounds like a back of the book blurb, and i'm ashamed i said it.

and thinking of _baudolino_ brings to mind _the princess and the cobbler_, a movie set in a similarly weird medieval mindset city. last i checked you can watch the recobbled version on youtube.

*edit* god damn it, it's _the thief and the cobbler_

Paul Auster's New York Trilogy is kind of a joke answer, but also… kind of not?

it's a good answer

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@“notthetoilet”#p60425 Oh yeah New York Trilogy definitely has big Weird City Energy (WCE)

Another game which might scratch the itch is Planescape Torment. The majority of the game takes place in Sigil, which is a pretty weird city.

The manga blame! probably fits but I haven’t had time to read it yet… maybe someone else could give a better recommendation

For sci-fi I think Kim Stanley robinsons California trilogy is under appreciated; it’s mostly a book series about Los Angeles. You can read them out of order if one appeals more… my favorite two were the second that followed a Philip k dick style and the third that imagined a Los Angeles in a world where climate change was defeated (worth noting they were written in the 80s)

Someone recommended delanys dhalgren and if you’re looking for more delany trouble on triton also fits imo… there have been a couple series of sci-fi books that kinda follow delanys imagining of alternative city state type politics lately as well if you’re into that: A series by malka older (the centenal cycle) which I liked and one by ada Palmer (that I hated tho I’m told there are fans of it) (terra ignota). In those two series there are a lot of weird cities however they are not always the main focus but they are explored at length

For some lit fic/ literary type stuff a few people have been following the Walter Benjamin (Berlin childhood) and wg sebald (I think austerlitz fits best) model of writing about cities like teju cole (open city) and Lauren elkin (flaneuse)… these are generally novels or ‘essays’ where the narrator weaves walking around a city with their personal history, history of the city, friends, etc… I believe all of these explore alienation in some form from the city and the strangeness of that.

There are probably a bunch of kdramas that fit this as well tho I know hotel del Luna does as well: what if there was a hotel for ghosts in the middle of the city and the main character worked there

I second Twenty Days of Turin, it‘s got that slow creep

Also the anime Texhnolyze (just cause it’s fresh in my memory) has the weirdest city I‘ve seen in a while; they say it’s its own character in the story, don‘t know if I’d go that far but it does tie everything together in the end