Christopher Golden

Joe Golem and the Copper Girl by Mike Mignola & Christopher Golden

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Joe Golem and the Drowning City

In 1925, earthquakes and a rising sea level left Lower Manhattan submerged under more than thirty feet of water, so that its residents began to call it the Drowning City. Those unwilling to abandon their homes created a new life on streets turned to canals and in buildings whose first three stories were underwater. Fifty years have passed since then, and the Drowning City is full of scavengers and water rats, poor people trying to eke out an existence, and those too proud or stubborn to be defeated by circumstance.

Among them are fourteen-year-old Molly McHugh and her friend and employer, Felix Orlov. Once upon a time Orlov the Conjuror was a celebrated stage magician, but now he is an old man, a psychic medium, contacting the spirits of the departed for the grieving loved ones left behind. When a seance goes horribly wrong, Felix Orlov is abducted by strange men wearing gas masks and rubber suits, and Molly soon finds herself on the run.

Her flight will lead her into the company of a mysterious man, and his stalwart sidekick, Joe Golem, whose own past is a mystery to him, but who walks his own dreams as a man of stone and clay, brought to life for the sole purpose of hunting witches.


"Highly descriptive writing and grotesque imagery help to place readers in this truly fantastic setting with hints of elder gods and worlds beyond worlds. Enhanced by multiple points of view and deeply philosophical in its underpinnings, the lavish illustrations add immediacy to Molly's world. Both [readers] who like their fantastic sprinkled with a little Lovecraft and steampunk and those who are interested in a wider view of the world should enjoy this."
- School Library Journal

"Mignola and Golden obviously remember what it felt like as young readers to be swept away by the powerful combination of pictures and words in a book. As they so effectively demonstrate in JOE GOLEM AND THE DROWNING CITY, this feeling can be captured again in later life. It deserves a place on your bookshelf alongside those adventures of Alice, Oz, Dr. Seuss and other illustrated books you've treasured all these years."
- Bookgasm

"J.R.R. Tolkien once wrote about 'the leaf-mold of story,' the accumulated hoard of human imagination from which further stories always grow. One can only marvel at the richness of the compost that generations of active fantasizing have created -- so many images, creatures, concepts. But it still takes something special to impose a unifying vision, and Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden have got it...The world that results (made even richer by Mr. Mignola's drawings) is one of the most powerful 'neverwheres' of the modern fantastic imagination. Joe Golem is surely booked for further adventures."
- The Wall Street Journal

"Rife with archetypes gleaned from the darkest gems of myth, folklore, and pop culture...It works because Mignola and Golden have written characters that give the tale a beating heart...These are people you can get behind, not shallow monster fodder...Fast-paced and entertaining, the novel's an easy recommendation for fans of Mignola and Golden. YA enthusiasts will find that it doesn't pander to the young, providing a dark, sturdy story that will appeal to teenagers and adults alike. It's also a gorgeous tome to behold, not least because of Mignola's always-stunning artwork. His black-and-white illustrations provide stark windows into the world of the novel, never giving away too much so the reader's imagination has room to experiment."
- Slant Magazine

"There's an appetite out there for these sorts of propulsive, fantasy-rich mash-ups of steampunk and mythic literature...But few combine literary sincerity and fun as well as Mignola and Golden. Here the pair construct a rich world ripe for sequels and prequels. With Jules Verne technology, ghosts, magic and multidimensional's an awfully fun way to pass an afternoon."
- Kirkus Review

"Joe Golem is the second collaboration between Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden (after 2007's Baltimore, or, The Steadfast Tin Soldier and the Vampire). The sense of dread is palpable, with both prose and picture creating the mood. The characters are both over the top and disturbingly realistic, and the city itself, shown within the upper stories of older buildings in the flood area, reinforces the plot and the tone of the novel. Fans of deep characterizations and quirky tales will enjoy this tale of weird science fiction."
- Shelf Awareness

"The tone of the novel is pulpy, splashed with Mignola's eternally present Chthulian atmosphere...and Christopher Golden does a noble job of infusing the mood of Mignola's artistic style into the printed word...Fans of Hellboy, steam punk, and pulp mysteries should find a lot to like about Joe Golem and the Drowning City."
- Brodartvibe

"Joe Golem and the Drowning City is that most marvelous kind of book - wholly original and yet completely accessible. Set in a unique world full of vivid and moving characters, it is gritty, mysterious, moving, and surprising. A brilliant combination of steampunk, fantasy, mystery, and adventure."
- David Liss, author of The Twelfth Enchantment

"A race against supernatural disaster through a haunting, dreamlike, and partially submerged New York City full of freaks, ghosts, and other lost souls, a story that grabs from the first page and doesn't let go."
- Tad Williams

"Joe Golem and the Drowning City is a warm, wicked, frantic tale of noble monsters and monstrous men. Not merely weird and not simply gorgeous, this supernatural steampunk fable is intimate and profound. It is dreadful and sublime."
- Cherie Priest

Additional Details
Hardcover published March 27th, 2012
Published by St. Martin's Griffin
Click here to buy the book now!
ISBN-10: 0312644736
ISBN-13: 978-0312644734

Paperback published April 16th, 2013
Published by St. Martin's Griffin
Click here to buy the book now!
ISBN-10: 1250020824
ISBN-13: 978-1250020826

Related Title:
Joe Golem and the Copper Girl

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