Reviews

Babel: An Arcane History by R.F. Kuang

niki_alex's review against another edition

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challenging emotional informative reflective tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

rbz39's review against another edition

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challenging dark emotional slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

1.5

I wanted this to be so much more than it was. The length does not justify the story told, which felt oddly simplistic and not imaginative. I found the story upsetting and the characters unlikable throughout. I didn’t want to close the book this way, but I was so disappointed.

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hhh_111's review against another edition

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4.0

Very much enjoyed the Oxford setting and the hidden complaints about workload here throughout the book. I enjoyed the world building and the criticism on imperialism, racism and sexism. I do Wonder why the first three years were covered in so much detail, as they didn’t really contribute to much to the plot, but I appreciated them nonetheless due to the personal relatability. The ending went a bit fast for me and I had kinda wished for more, but it’s ok. Very much like this authors writing style.

lydtonk's review against another edition

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challenging dark emotional informative sad tense slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

erinhawley's review against another edition

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adventurous dark emotional informative inspiring mysterious sad tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

5.0

rachelkanchana's review against another edition

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challenging dark emotional informative reflective sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

5.0

jujuiscold's review against another edition

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challenging emotional hopeful reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

madisondurham's review against another edition

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dark reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.75

libraryoflanelle's review against another edition

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adventurous challenging dark emotional informative reflective sad tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

5.0

makayla_muir's review against another edition

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adventurous challenging dark emotional hopeful mysterious reflective sad tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

5.0

Totally immersive. The characters are incredibly well crafted, the tension is palpable (I had a few moments where I couldn't wait until I finished reading the paragraph I was on so I read a few lines ahead because I so desperately wanted to know what happened), the ambiguous ending is marvellously done. Above all, I am just in awe of the amount of sheer effort, time, and research that would have gone into this novel. And this makes me appreciate all the more. I have a feeling this will be one I won't forget.