China Miéville

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Palgolak was a god of knowledge. … He was an

Palgolak was a god of knowledge. … He was an amiable, pleasant deity, a sage whose existence was entirely devoted to the collection, categorization, and dissemination of information. … Palgolak’s library … did not lend books, but it did allow readers in at any time of the day or night, and there were very, very few books it did not allow access to. The Palgolaki were proselytizers, holding that everything known by a worshipper was immediately known by Palgolak, which was why they were religiously charged to read voraciously. But their mission was only secondarily for the glory of Palgolak, and primarily for the glory of knowledge, which was why they were sworn to admit all who wished to enter into their library.

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Old stories would tell how Weavers would kill each

Old stories would tell how Weavers would kill each other over aesthetic disagreements, such as whether it was prettier to destroy an army of a thousand men or to leave it be, or whether a particular dandelion should or should not be plucked. For a Weaver, to think was to think aesthetically. To act–to Weave–was to bring about more pleasing patterns. They did not eat physical food: they seemed to subsist on the appreciation of beauty.

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It had become a chimney poking from a vertical

It had become a chimney poking from a vertical universe of bookshelves. There was motion below her. There were people on the shelves. They clung to the edges of the cases and moved across them in expert scuttles. They wore ropes and hooks and carried picks on which they sometimes hung. Dangling from straps they carried notebooks, pens, magnifying glasses, ink pads, and stamps. The men and women took books from the shelves as they went, checked their details, leaning against their ropes, replaced them, pulled out little pads and made notes, sometimes carried the books with them to another place and reshelved it there. … I’m Margarita Staples.” She bowed in her harness. ‘Extreme librarian. Bookaneer.

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