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The Killing Moon Paperback – 2012
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"Shines for its remarkable characters and graceful prose."―Library Journal
"In The Killing Moon, Jemisin displays her usual skill at portraying a world whose contours seem simple at first but which quickly break down into something much more complex and dissonant. The world is so fully fleshed out that I could breathe its spices, while the story and characters are so much a part of the world that you could not pull this story or these people out and plug them into a different setting. Jemisin proves yet again that she is one of the important new writers in the sff scene."―Kate Elliott, author of Cold Fire, on The Killing Moon.
"An engaging and fast-paced read with some truly excellent and complicated worldbuilding, The Killing Moon is the first of two planned books. Ehiru and Nijiri are complicated and interesting characters, and the way Jemisin slowly reveals the workings of their religion and what it means to be corrupt make for an absolutely fascinating read."―RT Book Reviews
"Ah N.K. Jemisin, you can do no wrong.... The blend of cultures and lore she draws on to make this very unique world is just stunning, and the fact that she inhabits it with such 3-dimensional characters is even more impressive.... If you want to get away from traditional fantasy world-building, but keep the compelling characters and deep lore, definitely pick this up!!"―Felicia Day
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Top Customer Reviews
Each night, the Gatherers go out. They visit the dying, the incurable, the aged, the insane, the corrupt. The souls they gather are nestled into a good place in the dreaming world forever. The dreamblood they gather is returned to the temple for the healing of others. Children with the dreaming gift who do not join the priesthood go mad.
In principle, this is very idyllic. No one drowns in their own lungs: they get a good death. The ill are healed, the mad are contained, crime is non-existent. Peace, perfect peace. In practice, however, the checks and balances are weak. Dreamblood is necessary/addictive to the Gatherers. There are hidden political currents using the power of the priests.
This is the story of the Gatherer Ehiru, his apprentice Nijiri, and the outland woman Sinandi, and how together they are all working toward peace, against steep odds. It's a heroic story, full of wit and strong will and deep, compassionate love.
I was deeply drawn to Ehiru's faith and dedication. He is the ideal of believers, steadfast and yet willing to listen, and performing his tasks out of love and service. Nijiri also has love and service, but in his case it's a toss-up of whether he loves his goddess or his mentor more. The end result is the same. Sinandi is a spymaster, a poised and competent woman protecting her country.
Worldbuilding has always been one of Jemisin's strong suits, and this book is a great example. Although I recognized some of the sources, she wove the whole into an intact and beautiful maze for our characters to grope through. The setting, the gods, the religion, all top-notch.Read more ›
The Killing Moon starts off slowly. There is world building to be accomplished and each chapter begins with a quote from the main culture's (in The Killing Moon) religious text. There are three characters introduced and Jemisin takes her time in fully drawing these characters and presenting them to the readers. Jemisin has time, the book is 448 pages and the first in a new series. So, the first 20 percent of the book involves story set up. The world is intricate, the religion and operating belief system is very unique. Thus, the slow build. Don't worry, there is some action and the book comes with a glossary. But once I was enmeshed in the story, I was hooked and did not want to put it down. Be prepared, like many fantasy stories it is slow in the beginning so readers need to be committed. What I was not ready for was an emotional ride and in-depth scenes between characters that were raw and dripping with emotion. The last 20% is non-stop action, but not the kind of action you can fast forward or skim your way through (which I admit to doing in action movies and many fantasy novels).Read more ›
It's a trip worth taking. Ehiru is a sacred assassin, a priest who ushers the souls of the dying into the dream world, Ina-Karekh, and gathers their dreamblood. When we first watch Ehiru gather a soul, we get a picture of the peace inherent in the process: the elderly and dying are granted surcease and left in paradise. But a priest can also get a commission to gather one who has no wish to die, who is in the fullness of life and has no belief in Hananja, the Goddess of Dreams whom Ehiru serves. When he is tasked to gather the soul of a foreign traveler, the traveler's resistance surprises Ehiru. Most surprising is the traveler's assertion that some gather for pleasure, instead of as a sacred duty, something Ehiru considers abomination, obscenity. But the traveler asserts that Ehiru is being used, and in something like panic Ehiru bungles the job of gathering his soul, setting it loose in the nightmare hollows of Ina-Karekh for all eternity.
From this beginning, we begin to get a picture of the plot: something is awry with the way the priests of Hananja are being used. Worse, though, we soon learn that something is wrong with Ehiru. And worse yet, there seems to be something wrong in Gujaareh, Ehiru's country.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
These are fascinating characters and this is a richly-constructed world. The questions of morality and what is the "honorable" thing to do, when your nation's leader is not... Read morePublished 5 days ago by Amazon Customer
I was enchanted by the two books in this series - the clear, lyrical writing and the ideas and characters. The emotions rang true. Read morePublished 6 days ago by R. Nash
How fortunate to discover N.K.Jemisin's fantasy novels through a Goodreads recommendation. These are not your tired sword and sorcery tropes; her writing is more akin to Dune's... Read morePublished 10 days ago by PodkaneofMars
Everything about this book hit home. For me, finally reading a book that's not set in a medieval european setting was already refreshing -- but reading a book that's in a world so... Read morePublished 11 days ago by William
Absolutely riveting. I found myself saying 'just one more chapter' too many times to count.Published 17 days ago by Amazon Customer
I was blown away by the world building and the "Magic" system. N.K Jemisin did an amazing job there. I give it 3 stars rather than 5 over some small issues. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Onanga Rodney Robin F
This has the same feel to it as the Inheritance Trilogy, but is based upon Egyptian mythology instead. Not a bad thing as it gives a fresh twist to mythological tales. Read morePublished 2 months ago by CompuChip
Yet another intricate and intriguing world the author has built here. Although, the story develops more subdued, it is nevertheless, a riveting tale.Published 3 months ago by Lulu168
Great read. Totally unexpected. If you like Saharan locales and complex characters, this is the read for you. Great use of magic!Published 3 months ago by c heisserer