The Physiognomy The nightmare metropolis called the Well Built City exists because the satanic genius and Master Drachton Below wished it so And few within its confines hold the power of Physiognomist First Class C

  • Title: The Physiognomy
  • Author: Jeffrey Ford
  • ISBN: 9780380793327
  • Page: 308
  • Format: Paperback
  • The nightmare metropolis called the Well Built City exists because the satanic genius and Master, Drachton Below, wished it so And few within its confines hold the power of Physiognomist First Class Cley With scalpels, calipers, and the other instruments of his science, Cley can divine good and evil, determine character and intelligence, uncover dark secrets and foretellThe nightmare metropolis called the Well Built City exists because the satanic genius and Master, Drachton Below, wished it so And few within its confines hold the power of Physiognomist First Class Cley With scalpels, calipers, and the other instruments of his science, Cley can divine good and evil, determine character and intelligence, uncover dark secrets and foretell a person s destiny, through the careful study of facial and bodily features But now the Master has ordered the great physiognomist out of the City on a seemingly trivial assignment into the rural hinterlands but there, removed from Below s omnipresent scrutiny, even the most loyal servant of logic and order can fall prey to seductions of the flesh and spirit And in this strange and unfamiliar place possessing terrors uniquely its own, there are stark truths awaiting the eminent Cley and inescapable revelations that could shatter his perceptions of himself, his profession, and his world.

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      Published :2018-09-09T10:39:53+00:00

    One thought on “The Physiognomy”

    1. Do you thrill to characters that display the worst traits of humanity, protagonists that wallow in the base muck of human indecency? In short, do you like books about assholes?If so you’re in for a treat with Jeffrey Ford’s Physiognomy Cley, the main character of Physiognomy is an arrogant, cruel, misogynistic and abusive sadist who spends his life mercilessly judging people via their appearances. Big deal I hear you say - these days people like Cley get elected to the highest of public offi [...]

    2. Since this book won the World Fantasy Award, I'd wanted to read it for a while. Thanks to NetGalley and Open Road Media for giving me the opportunity. I see why the book won the award - it gives us a strikingly original and interesting scenario: a fantasy world ruled by an oppressive dictator, who utilizes civil servants to maintain his cruel regime. One of the tools in his arsenal is the faux-'science' of physiognomy, where an 'expert' uses phrenology and other physical measurements to determin [...]

    3. ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.Physiognomist Cley has been sent by Master Drachton Below, the evil genius who constructed the Well-Built City, to the faraway mining district of Anamasobia to investigate the theft of a fruit that’s rumored to have grown in the Earthly Paradise and to have supernatural powers. Upon arriving, the skeptical and arrogant physiognomist finds a whole town of morons whose physical features clearly indicate that they are all backward and generally pathetic. Ex [...]

    4. reviewstaphorosis 2.5 starsAs punishment, Physiognomist First Class Cley is sent by the Master to investigate a minor matter. He sets out to do so with his usual brutal, privileged, directness, only to end up on a course toward disaster.The Physiognomist struck me as a self-consciously quirky story – as with Jeff Vandermeer, Physiognomist author Jeffrey Ford trying too hard to be outlandish and strange. This feels a story asking - begging, even - to be placed with Kafka. It would have succeede [...]

    5. I'm not going to say this book is objectively bad. It has entertaining features and the dark humor of the beginning pulled me in. However--the author seems so intent on making his allegory that he forgets to make the charactersaracters.ead of devices. The main character is dynamic but his change is predictable and not exciting to me. And it doesn't make him more appealing, really.The allegory is interesting. I won't expound much on it here or say I fully understand it. The author just has a lot [...]

    6. Jeffrey Ford is the master of the hauntingly bizarre. This novel, along with the two others in the Well-Built City trilogy, have a steampunk feel to them, but steampunk filtered through Faery, Alice's Wonderland--or maybe, more accurately, Salvador Dali. What you think you see may not really be there, or may be something else all together. I suspect people will either hate it or love it. The characters are often as strange as their surroundings, but I was completely engaged by them, even when th [...]

    7. Having read Ford's later work (especially his short stories) before coming to this novel, I had certain expectations about his writing style and subject matter. And so, the baroque and decadent world of The Physiognomy was, at first, a huge surprise. But as I became accustomed the the more formal rhythms of Cley's narratorial expression, and to the casual cruelty of the world's grand architect Drachton Below, I found myself completely immersed. Both magic and science have an uncomfortable coexis [...]

    8. This book has a monkey who runs a hotel. He's a fairly secondary character, but I've got a soft spot for hotelier monkeys.Also, like his short stories, this novel helps explain why Jeffrey Ford's name gets thrown around in lists of New Weird writers, and justifies my desire to read everything by him that I can. At some point this should be re-issued in a collection with the other Well Built City novels and I'll have to re-buy it. Assuming the Trilogy is as good as this one, I won't mind.

    9. Cley is a great narrator. He is such an arrogant prick in the first half of the book that you want something bad to happen to him. And yet, you somehow, bizarrely, root for him anyway. He does some absolutely horrible things--one in particular made me actually cringe and shudder while reading. He does pay for his sins, however, but I can't say that I ever truly like the character all that much. Even after he reforms, he seems to be still mostly a prick. But he is nonetheless a compelling prick.T [...]

    10. I really wanted to love this book. I stopped reading for a day and then started over in attempts to love it, but sadly, I did not. Now, before I go any further, please know this book is a three star book, for me. It’s very well written, very well thought out and executed, as well as developed. It’s super imaginative and in some areas, will bewitch you. However, it lacked just a small something for me. I don’t even know what it lacks to be honest. For about a day, I paced around my garage t [...]

    11. Sci-fi/fantasy in the mold of The Shadow of the Torturer by Gene Wolfe. This is one of the best books I've read in a while. The voice of the novel is Physiognomist First Class Cley. He works for a Hitler-like master named Drachton Below. Cley's job involves judging the character of others by reading their physiognomy. There are strict mathematical formulas for determining guilt, innocence or even what one may do in the future, but basically it comes down to if one looks like an imbecile they are [...]

    12. Having enjoyed some of Jeffrey Ford's short stories, I was looking forward to reading The Physiognomy which sounded, on the face of it, very much up my alley. It does indeed have some great and disturbing imagery and concepts, but is also a supremely unpleasant read due in part to its supremely unpleasant POV character but mostly due to an odd lack of tension or narrative drive. I couldn't get very far with this, and I'm not masochistic enough to try harder at this time. I think some readers wil [...]

    13. At the beginning of this book I really considered abandoning it. I assumed because the author is male that I knew what he was on about - another entry in the horrible canon of men writing male characters whose violently-broadcast hatred is viewed as progressive by some men (who feel oppressed because there are penalties for abusing their fellow humans), but is in reality just a repackaging of the same old hatred that still powers American culture. If you read the beginning of this book you will [...]

    14. 3.5 starsORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.Physiognomist Cley has been sent by Master Drachton Below, the evil genius who constructed the Well-Built City, to the faraway mining district of Anamasobia to investigate the theft of a fruit that’s rumored to have grown in the Earthly Paradise and to have supernatural powers. Upon arriving, the skeptical and arrogant physiognomist finds a whole town of morons whose physical features clearly indicate that they are all backward and generally pat [...]

    15. * - possibly two stars for effort, but I would never recommend this book.(view spoiler)["Physiognomy" by Jeffrey Ford is a tale following the spirito-physical journey of the main protagonist, simply known as Cley. He is a physiognomist - a person trained in the art of judging human character from facial features. At the start of the story, he is a callous and ardent follower of physiognomy and an integral cog in the bureaucratic machinery serving the Master of the Well-Built City, Drachton Below [...]

    16. The Physiognomy is the first book of The Well-Built City trilogy, and all three books supposedly make up one big novel. I won’t be reading book two and three, as The Physiognomy failed to connect with me. I am not saying this is a bad book, I am just saying it wasn’t my cup of tea. As it won the World Fantasy Award – not an award with a bad track record, with winners as diverse as Clarke, Le Guin, Miéville, Kay, Priest, Powers, Wolfe – I’m sure there’s an audience for it.I’ve devi [...]

    17. με διακατέχει μια αμφιγνωμία βασικάΣαν σύνολο - πλοκή, αφήγηση, περιγραφή, χαρακτήρες λεξιλόγιο- με άφησε γενικώς ικανοποιημένη μα με μια μικρή γεύση έλλειψης.Σαν κάτι να του λείπει ή κάτι να το εχω κάπου ξαναδιαβάσει γραμμένο καλύτερα.Ωραίος ο κόσμος του Ford, ενδιαφέρουσα κ [...]

    18. I am really not sure what I think of this book other than it was strange. I felt like it was trying to be _1984_ or a _Brave New World_, but perhaps that is because those books were referenced when it was given to me. The power of those books comes from the fact that their worlds are a almost believable perversion of our own world where the world in _Physiognomy_ is definitely science fiction or fantasy with demons and magical fruit. Thus it did not speak to me as the other two books had. The wo [...]

    19. Physiognomist Cley has been sent by Master Drachton Below, the evil genius who constructed the Well-Built City, to the faraway mining district of Anamasobia to investigate the theft of a fruit that’s rumored to have grown in the Earthly Paradise and to have supernatural powers. Upon arriving, the skeptical and arrogant physiognomist finds a whole town of morons whose physical features clearly indicate that they are all backward and generally pathetic. Except for Arla, whose beautiful features [...]

    20. Decepcionante. Así ha sido mi experiencia con la Fisiognomía de Ford. El autor teje un mundo muy interesante, con unas imágenes bastante potentes, pero falla estrepitosamente a la hora de hilvanar una historia que nos guíe a través del mismo.La narración avanza a saltos, con demasiadas situaciones que ocurren sin más justificación que el ser necesarias para que la historia avance. Esto se refleja también en la evolución del protagonista, entre forzada y previsible, en especial en su pa [...]

    21. I absolutely loved this book. The seemingly unlikeable protag/narrarator, First Class Physiognomist Cley was such a pleasingly dynamic character. Ford's imagination and creativity gleamed like the Well-Built city. His prose was not flashy but effective and economical. He told an excitingly new, weird, original tale in such a short time. I really appreciated that he was able to accomplish so much in a 244 page novel.I will definitely read more Jeffrey Ford.

    22. Parts of this were absolutely brilliant and parts seemed too pat and simplistic. The ending especially. Overall I liked it quite a lot though - beautiful prose and bizarre imagery rarely fails to delight me.

    23. Unique worldbuilding as seen through the eyes of the most entertainingly arrogant narrator I've ever read. Sometimes funny, sometimes grisly, always fascinating.

    24. 5.5 stars. When you read Physiognomy, It feels like you are proceeding a strange journey.The story begin through the end as if it makes you have a deep dream that you don`t know what the exact meaningis story is wierd but it`s a good story that you should give a try.

    25. I pretty much envisioned Cley as Rick Sanchez from "Rick and Morty" for like a good portion of this book. At this point, I'm hoping I'm not the only one.

    26. This book is kind of trippy, which is of course the main reason I like it. In a place called the Well Built City, ruled over the the tyrannical scientist/sorcerer Drachton Below, people are judged and/or oppressed with the bogus (real world) science of physiognomy, which supposedly can determine a person's true nature and personality by careful examination of their appearance. Our protagonist, Cley, is an expert physiognomist, and also a cruel, heartless, arrogant, inconsiderate man. In the outl [...]

    27. This book is written in a style that dense and compressed yet deliciously florid all at the same time. Over at , reviewers have complained about a perceived lack of characterization in this book, but I didn't have this problem. Cley (the Physiognomist who goes from antihero to hero during the course of the book) is certainly a complete character, and I felt there was certainly enough of the Master, Arla, and the Traveler to go around. If the denizens of the Territory seem like caricatures to us, [...]

    28. Этот мир был создан исключительно силой мысли Создателя Драхтона Белоу. Однажды, много лет назад, этот безумный демиург смог превзойти своего учителя, научившись воплощать не только идеи в образы, но и образы в материю. Именно с тех пор посреди этого мироздания и появился О [...]

    29. The conventions of fantasy are there but somehow Jeffrey Ford’s portrait of the physiognomist (one who analyzes moral character through bodily characteristics) seems so close and familiar. What’s so familiar about miners in the hinterland working so long and hard that they turn into solid blue statues? Are we familiar with any head of state with the obviously allegorical name Drachton Below? Contemporary culture is drug addled but shooting up on a substance called beauty is definitely not a [...]

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