One of her arms is a whirring mechanical contraption and all of her is geared to hunting a massive albino ‘ moldywarpe’ ( a giant mole). This may sound a bit ridiculous without context but in Railsea, a reimagining of Moby Dick, Captain Naphi is Mieville’s version of Captain Ahab and a fascinating character at that. Her determination to find the mole is fearsome. Her crew is both petrified and in absolute awe of her. You’d think a woman without all her limbs would seem handicapped, but not Naphi. It’s not often that a character is both menacing as well as reassuring — Naphi manages this balance and is someone no one would mess with. This is a woman we want by our side.