Posts Tagged: N.K. Jemisin

The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin

Several months ago, N.K. Jemisin, much-loved (and totally awesome and smart) author of The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms (REVIEW) and The Killing Moon (REVIEW), announced that her next novel was going to be, “a postapocalyptic epic fantasy trilogy, set in a world of seismic magic users and enigmatic nonhumans called stone-eaters.”

That novel has been revealed, along with the gorgeous cover, by The Mary Sue, as The Fifth Season. Jemisin describes The Fifth Season:

The Fifth Season is set in a world which has suffered frequent, repeated Extinction Level Events for millions of years, and all life (and magic) in this world has adapted to it. Hundreds of years might pass between these events — easy, plentiful years in which great cities rise, and people have the leisure for art and science and rapid advancement — but then, again and again, the cities fall. The world is littered with the detritus of these times of plenty, and this cover hints at them: past ages of decadence, now decaying; stone that endures beneath flaking gilt.

The Fifth Season is set for release by Orbit Books in August 2014, which, right now, feels like an eternity to wait for what will, if her other books are any indication, be one of 2014’s best fantasies.

A Dribble of Ink's 2013 Hugo Nominations & Recommendations

Welcome to my 2013 Hugo nominations and recommendations. Here I will be collecting the novels, writers, films and videogames that I believe are deserving to win a Hugo award. I have not filled out every category, for one reason or another, but there is a nice variety here, all of which entertained me in 2012. Also included in these nominations and recommendations are other notable items for your consideration. These are generally items that I’ve not read or experienced yet but come well-recommended by people I trust and are on my plate to do so before the nomination process.

This list is still a work-in-progress and can (and will change) before the nomination period ends on March, 10th. I hope you find something of interest here. Enjoy.

Best Novel

If you look at the list of 2012-published novels I read last year, it might be no surprise that, as of now, I do not have enough novels to fill my ballot in this category. Between now and the nomination deadline I will be doing some catch-up, and I’ve included those novels in the ‘Other Notables’ section, but it 2012 was not a particularly strong year for me. The novels I include below, however, I believe in fully.

THE KING'S BLOOD by Daniel AbrahamThe King’s Blood by Daniel Abraham
(REVIEW // Buy: Book/eBook)

Geder Palliako’s star is rising. He is a hero of Antea, protector to the crown prince, and darling of the court. But storms from his past are gathering, and with them, a war that will change everything.

Cithrin bel Sarcour founded a powerful bank on stolen wealth, forged papers, and ready blades. Now every move she makes is observed, recorded, and controlled. Unless Cithrin can free herself from her gilded cage, the life she made will be for naught; war may provide just the opportunity she needs.

An apostate priest sees the hidden hand behind all: a long-buried secret of the dragon empire threatens everything humanity has built. An age of madness and death approaches, with only a few doomed heroes to stand in its way.

Last year, I chose to nominate Abraham’s The Dragon’s Path over Leviathan Wakes, his SF collaboration with Ty Franck, published under the name ‘James S.A. Corey.’ Leviathan Wakes made the ballot, The Dragon’s Path did not. I still believe in that nomination and that Abraham is behind some of today’s most interesting and exciting Fantasy. The Dagger & The Coin takes the comfortable, adventurous Fantasy built by Terry Brooks, David Eddings and Raymond E. Feist and imbues it with an intelligence and depth that sets it apart from the rest of the field. The King’s Blood is an improvement on The Dragon’s Path on every level and continues to prove Abraham’s worth the genre. As I said in my review, “It’s about time we stop comparing Abraham to other authors, and start comparing other authors to him.”

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The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin

Publisher: Orbit Books - Pages: 448 - Buy: Book/eBook
The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, N.K. Jemisin’s Hugo nominated debut, was one of the first novels I reviewed, at which time I said:

Jemisin presents a style that is uniquely intimate. I often felt like a voyeur lurking on the outskirts of something I shouldn’t be seeing. It is beautifully written and brims with emotion.

While I haven’t managed to read the subsequent two volumes in the Inheritance Trilogy, the outstanding nature of the first novel put The Killing Moon on my radar as soon as it was announced for 2012 release.

To anyone paying attention to genre scuttlebutt, it’s common knowledge that Jemisin is one of the more outspoken proponents of bringing new points of view to the fantasy lexicon. Whether that means non-western cultures, strong female characters, or more challenging narrative structures, she’s practiced what she preaches. In The Killing Moon the focus is more on the first two, eschewing the more complex narratives of her past work. The result is a plot oriented novel that will appeal to traditional fans of high fantasy as well as those tired of reading recycled characters and worlds. Read More »

The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin

To anyone who’s read this blog, or is generally acquainted with the popular Fantasy fiction from the last several years, N.K. Jemisin needs no introduction. She’s been nominated for a serious number of awards (Locus, Hugo, Nebula), and, since the release of her first novel, The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms (REVIEW), has become something of a force in the Fantasy genre.

The synopsis for The Killing Moon is enough to get any jaded fan interested:

In the ancient city-state of Gujaareh, peace is the only law. Upon its rooftops and amongst the shadows of its cobbled streets wait the Gatherers – the keepers of this peace. Priests of the dream-goddess, their duty is to harvest the magic of the sleeping mind and use it to heal, soothe . . . and kill those judged corrupt.

But when a conspiracy blooms within Gujaareh’s great temple, Ehiru – the most famous of the city’s Gatherers – must question everything he knows. Someone, or something, is stalking its prey both in Gujaareh’s alleys and the realm of dreams. Ehiru must now protect the woman he was sent to kill – or watch the city be devoured by war and forbidden magic.

The Killing Moon is the first volume of her latest series, The Dreamblood Duology, and has received a number of positive reviews around the web. If, like me, you’re excited about Jemisin’s work, it looks like you won’t be let down. If you’re unaware of Jemisin, or haven’t tried her fiction, this is the perfect place to start.

And the reviews:

The Book Smugglers:

Gripping. Fascinating. Cool. All these mighty fine words that can be used to describe The Killing Moon. From lavish descriptions of Gujaareh and its temples and palaces to the detailed aspects of the social, political and religious structures, all of them intrinsically connected around the worship of the Goddess of Dreams, all is superbly well done. Although at points I did think there was a certain excess of exposition, I can’t deny that I gobbled it all up with pleasure. Although it is clear from early on who is behind the conspiracy that, I feel, is not the point of the story – the point is not only the HOW and the WHY but also the ways that said conspiracy and its motivation impact or will impact in the Modus Vivendi of not only the Gujaareh people but also of other peoples. Beyond that, even despite the originality of the setting, the idea behind the magic system being rooted in dream theory and the Dream-world as a PLACE reminded me a lot of Gaiman’s Sandman (not to mention that I thought of the Corinthian as well when the Reaper starts to make an appearance ) and this is a very positive thing in my book.

Also and I don’t think I can emphasise enough the level of coolness present in The Killing Moon but: NINJA PRIESTS. Yeah, baby.


What is so impressive about Gujaareh (and the other peoples we see in this book, particularly those of Kisua) is in its utterly fantastic holistic believability. We believe in this world and its characters because the culture is so well defined, the rules of magic so wholly conceived, the tensions between classes, between natives and foreigners, so utterly genuine. Reading a society like that of the Gujaareen makes it so glaringly apparent how lacking so many contemporary fantasy novels are in comparison – N.K. Jemisin’s worldbuilding is of the highest grade, and nigh unparalleled.


I loved this novel deeply, and I cannot wait for The Shadowed Sun. The Killing Moon, to put it simply, is the best book I have read in 2012 thus far.

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N.K. Jemisin, author of THE HUNDRED THOUSAND KINGDOMSN.K. Jemisin spilled the beans today about a new trilogy that she’s sold to Orbit Books, who published her previous two Fantasy series. Like those, this is also Epic Fantasy, but the setting is sure to capture your attention:

[T]his will be a postapocalyptic epic fantasy trilogy, set in a world of seismic magic users and enigmatic nonhumans called stone-eaters. I’m experimenting with writing the kind of trilogy that follows a single character through mutliple [sic] books.

Seismic magic? Post-apocalyptic Epic Fantasy? Enigmatic nonhumans? I constantly find myself envious of her imagination. Where do I sign up?

As always, I’ll pass along any news or details about Jemisin’s next (next?) series as I unearth it. Meanwhile, Jemisin is set to release her fourth novel, The Killing Moon, the first volume in The Dreamblood Duology, tomorrow, May 1st, 2012.