Last week, we got an early look at the first two chapters of N.K. Jemisin‘s The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, a debut novel from Orbit Books that is raking in positive reviews. This week brings us the third, and final, sample chapter.

Should I pause to explain? It is poor storytelling. But I must remember everything, remember and remember and remember, to keep a tight grip on it. So many bits of myself have escaped already.


There were once three gods. The one who matters killed one of the ones who didn’t and cast the other into a hellish prison. The walls of this prison were blood and bone; the barred windows were eyes; the punishments included sleep and pain and hunger and all the other incessant demands of mortal flesh. Then this creature, trapped in his tangible vessel, was given to the Arameri for safekeeping, along with three of his godly children. After the horror of incarnation, what difference could mere slavery make?

As a little girl, I learned from the priests of Bright Itempas that this fallen god was pure evil. In the time of the Three, his followers had been a dark, savage cult devoted to violent midnight revels, worshiping madness as a sacrament. If that one had won the war between the gods, the priests intoned direly, mortalkind would probably no longer exist.

“So be good,” the priests would add, “or the Nightlord will get you.”

My anticipation for this novel builds. Chapter Three of The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms can be read HERE.

  • Shawn January 28, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    I’m sad this isn’t being released in hardcover. Sucky.

  • aidan January 28, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    No kidding. It’d look nice and shiny on a bookshelf.

  • Joseph January 29, 2010 at 7:27 am

    How come it’s not getting a HC run? It’s one I’d like to be picking up.

    By the way, thanks for the update Aidan.