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Dresden Files meets Neverwhere in A City Dreaming

A City Dreaming

A Novel

by Daniel Polansky

Regan Arts

Sci Fi & Fantasy

Pub Date 04 Oct 2016


Dresden Files meets Gaiman’s Neverwhere - A City Dreaming amazes readers with its rich world that is just a shade beyond our everyday reality. A City Dreaming is composed of a series of dreamlike vignettes where M, an ageless drifter who subtly manipulates reality, encounters friends, enemies, lovers, and more than a few challenges all while trying to exert as little effort as possible. Whether M is contesting an alien being flooding New York City with vast numbers of hipster populated coffeehouses, avoiding zombies at a dinner party or riding a subway through hell merely to find the nexus - where he can get a direct trip anywhere, he rarely gets rattled.

The description is a little misleading. A City Dreaming isn’t a novel in the traditional sense with a beginning, middle, climax and resolution. Rather, it is a journey of experience, rarely linear but often interlinked. Personally, that is one reason I feel A City Dreaming is unique, special. It is all the more enjoyable because it challenges normal perceptions. If you go in expecting a run-of-the-mill adventure, you will be disappointed. Instead, keep your mind open as you read, ride the currents of M’s adventures.

A City Dreaming is a unique read that I highly recommend for anyone who enjoys writers such as Neil Gaiman or Seanan McGuire. Daniel Polansky is definitely an author to watch.


I received a copy of A City Dreaming from the publisher and in exchange for an honest review.



A powerful magician returns to New York City and reluctantly finds himself in the middle of a war between the city's two most powerful witches.

“It would help if you did not think of it as magic. M certainly had long ceased to do so.”

M is an ageless drifter with a sharp tongue, few scruples, and the ability to bend reality to his will, ever so slightly. He's come back to New York City after a long absence, and though he'd much rather spend his days drinking artisanal beer in his favorite local bar, his old friends—and his enemies—have other plans for him. One night M might find himself squaring off against the pirates who cruise the Gowanus Canal; another night sees him at a fashionable uptown charity auction where the waitstaff are all zombies. A subway ride through the inner circles of hell? In M's world, that's practically a pleasant diversion.

Before too long, M realizes he's landed in the middle of a power struggle between Celise, the elegant White Queen of Manhattan, and Abilene, Brooklyn's hip, free-spirited Red Queen, a rivalry that threatens to make New York go the way of Atlantis. To stop it, M will have to call in every favor, waste every charm, and blow every spell he's ever acquired—he might even have to get out of bed before noon.

Enter a world of Wall Street wolves, slumming scenesters, desperate artists, drug-induced divinities, pocket steampunk universes, and demonic coffee shops. M's New York, the infinite nexus of the universe, really is a city that never sleeps—but is always dreaming.

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