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Four Lost Cities


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About the Author

Annalee Newitz, a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times, is a founder of io9 and former editor-in-chief of Gizmodo. They are the author of Scatter, Adapt, and Remember and the novels Autonomous and The Future of Another Timeline. They live in San Francisco.


"As the American science journalist, editor and author Annalee Newitz chronicles in the superbly detailed Four Lost Cities, the cities of the past are never completely lost - exploring their histories can tell us much about our own time... an astounding reflection on the rise and fall of civilisations, on the ancient human need to cluster together in our version of burrows and ant heaps." -- Nilanjana Roy - Financial Times
"The stories behind Four Lost Cities... show the importance of the deep history of urban life for our near future." -- The Best Science Books to Read in 2021 - New Scientist
"Excellent of its kind... fair, judicious, open-minded... the writer ruminates amid ruins... the imaginings shared are always vivid, well-informed and disciplined." -- Felipe Fernandez-Armesto - The Washington Post
"The book functions as a travel guide to places that no longer exist... [it] filled me with wonder." -- Russell Shorto - The New York Times Book Review
"Newitz dispels myths, evokes fascinating stories, and makes us think hard about our own urban future." -- Charles Mann
"Newitz always sees to the heart of complex systems and breaks them down with poetic ferocity." -- NK Jemisin, author of the Broken Earth trilogy and The City We Became
"Newitz has achieved something remarkable, taking a very personal drive to understand the way we live and using it to enliven the past, at each turn letting expert voices guide a clear-sighted discussion of the lives of marginalized populations, the potential held by new scientific methods of analysis, and-perhaps most importantly-the self-awareness that what we see of the past is very much a product of how we understand the present." -- B. R. Hassett - Science

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