Format: Audio-Book – Library
Buy it Here: The Fifth Season (The Broken Earth)
This is what genre-bending, brilliant, challenging Fantasy/SciFi should look like. Jemisin brings us into a tumultuous world filled with volcanoes, earthquakes, magic wielders, sentient rocks, pirates, nomads, enough romance to keep me engaged, and a bizarre boarding school. I feel like Stefon on Saturday Night Live telling you about a night club– “This Book Has EVERYTHING!” It truly does. This book won the Hugo for a reason.
As it is with many of the books I fall in love with, I have trouble explaining this book. Terrible books are easy to write off with a sentence. Books like this have so much depth and involve so much life experience– well, they’re more difficult to describe. It’s a coming of age story– in a way. It’s also a hero’s journey– kinda. I think the big question of this book is– “How do you know who you are?” or perhaps, “What is self-identity?”
I admit it took me a little while to get into this book, but once I was in I was absolutely hooked. Like, I might go back and experience it again right away because I know I’m going to pick up on so many more of her meticulous details on a second read. This is an incredibly smart book that doesn’t make you feel dumb. I LOVE that about a book.
I enjoyed the slow unfolding of the connections in this book. I loved traveling with all of the characters. I loved being cranky with Syenite (she had every right to be far more than cranky), devastated and hate-filled with Essun, and fierce and determined like little Damaya. I was drawn into these characters; I cared about them. I was interested in them. For a book where three stories are told simultaneously, the interweaving was gorgeous.
I greatly look forward to picking up the next book in this series. If you like SciFi/Fantasy at all, do yourself a huge favor and pick this book up.
Subjective Hearts: ♥♥♥♥4/5
Objective Hearts: ♥♥♥♥♥ 5/5
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