King Rat v Eternal Haze

Book: King Rat
Author: China Mieville
Publisher: Macmillan
Published: 1998

This was China Miéville’s debut novel, written before the better known Bas Lag books. Like his later work, this is a Weird book.

Saul’s dad is murdered and he becomes the chief suspect. While waiting in a cell trying to work out what on earth is going on, he is rescued by someone claiming to be the King of the Rats, Saul’s Uncle. King Rat claims this means that Saul is half Rat himself, manifesting in the ability to eat absolutely anything (including rubbish) and slip through the tiniest of gaps.

The Pied Piper is in town and on the hunt. King Rat needs allies if they are to thwart the Piper and with Saul, he goes to visit the Spider King and the Bird King who also have a grudge against the famed ratcatcher.

While he can’t deny that there is truth in what King Rat tells him, Saul can’t leave his human life entirely behind him to embrace the Rat life. And that’s where things get interesting…

Beer: Eternal Haze
Brewery: Northern Monk in collaboration with Stigbergets
Strength: 8.0%

Hazy and very hoppy. It’s got that sweetness of a strong IPA but it’s not unsettling. Too strong to gulp though. Nice enough but it took me a while to drink, and all the way through I couldn’t decide if that was because it was too strong or because I wasn’t enjoying it.

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