Originally Posted by Brys
I don't know how long the Looking for Jake story is - the one I have is a novella of about 100 pages. I would assume the Looking for Jake story is a condensed version of that, as the novella was written first.
Just to clarify, it's not a condensed version, it's actually the novella completing one bookend of the Looking For Jake collection. I've got the TPB edition of "Jake" and it's approx 70 pages, so if you have MMPB of Tain then 100 pages would be about right. You're correct however, in that the novella was published in 2002 ahead of this collection. Tain was a Locus Award recipient and is very good, particularly strong on atmosphere and visual imagery. The main character is not as well fleshed out as one would like and the plot in many ways plays a secondary role to Mievile's often superb prose. It also has an aspect of military fantasy, which may please you. The "mirror" creatures are inspired by literary heavyweight George Luis Borges and the Tain is an actual word relating to this concept. I shan't reveal more at the risk of spoiling it for you.
Let us know how you fare once you've read the novella...