The Fifth Season

Let’s start with the end of the world, why don’t we?

I’m pretty sure I don’t understand what kind of story I just finished. Not understanding like getting it, because half way in, I was pulled in. No, I’m just confused, lost. In over my head.

N.K. Jemisin is one of those authors I just really wanted to try once, and with no clear recommendations, any start anywhere is a good one.

For a long time, I wasn’t sure if this book was the right start. There’s no bright, light, breezy flow to The Fifth Season, and as every end-of-the-world book, it makes me go down the road of uncomfortable what-ifs. There is a lot of world and society and people to learn off, and when you feel like you might have a grip, Jemisin starts turning things. It almost feels like a point and click game, one where wander into bonus levels unwittingly (is this a flashback? A flashforward? What am I reading here?).

The Fifth Season is definitely at home in the category of epic fantasy, fantasy that has been invested in and that might stick with you for years to come. And like the most epics, it needs a bit of you to work out. After the first 200 pages I was glad I didn’t plan on reading more of it (it’s part of a series), after the second 200 I decided I was curious for more, but after a breather.

The Fifth Season, N.K. Jemisin, Orbit 2015

 

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