I am not usually a fantasy reader, but I’ve heard amazing things about the author, N.K. Jemisin. I want to read The City We Became (and the books that follow), but I’ve also learned that I need an entire trilogy in my hands in order for me to read it. I’ve heard great things about The Broken Earth trilogy and how it centers on the end of the world. I love that stuff, so I picked the series up. It won consecutive annual awards in the sci-fi/fantasy world, so I knew I was in for a treat.
The first book is The Fifth Season. Jemisin is a master at creating a fascinating world for her readers. I loved meeting Essun, Damaya, and Syenite, and seeing what life is like for orogenes — people who can control the earth’s movement. They are oppressed and heavily controlled in this society because people fear the damage they can cause. Damaya is a young orogene, who is brought to the Fulcrum, a city that trains orogenes. Syenite is a senior student at the Fulcrum. Essun is an orogene in hiding with her family in a small city in Tirimo. Essun comes home to find her son dead and her husband and daughter missing after a large earthquake, and she spends the series trying to find her daughter. I can’t really explain much more than this, because it will completely ruin the ending of this novel. I will say that it absolutely blew my mind
The second book is The Obelisk Gate, and we learn more about Essun, who has found an underground community of orogenes to join. We also learn about Nassun, Essun’s missing daughter. The final book is The Stone Sky, where the series is beautifully wrapped up.
As I said, I don’t read a lot of high fantasy. I have a hard time understanding completely new worlds. I will say that it took me a bit more time than usual to get into the book, but once I was in, I was invested. The characters were dynamic and fascinating and I couldn’t wait to see how things ended up for them. I really appreciated the themes and how they connected to today’s society — how we oppress some members of society because we’re afraid of them. Other motifs I picked up on were motherhood, sexuality, leadership, and identity. My biggest issue while reading this series was that I had a hard time understanding a lot of the science, though — it was very heavy on geological terms and I needed a lot of help with that.
This series is well-written and unlike anything I’ve ever read before. I strongly suggest this series if you’re looking for something immersive & fascinating!