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The Killing Moon Paperback – 2012
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"[A] gripping series launch... as well as a rousing political and supernatural adventure."―Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
"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
About the Author
N. K. Jemisin is a Brooklyn author who won the Hugo Award for Best Novel for The Fifth Season, which was also a New York Times Notable Book of 2015. She previously won the Locus Award for her first novel, The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, and her short fiction and novels have been nominated multiple times for Hugo, World Fantasy, Nebula, and RT Reviewers' Choice awards, and shortlisted for the Crawford and the James Tiptree, Jr. awards. She is a science fiction and fantasy reviewer for the New York Times, and you can find her online at nkjemisin.com.
Top customer reviews
The antagonist was very complex and human. I could understand their reasoning for the things they did, be frightened of them while still feeling moved by their loved ones. The book absolutely had one of the more compelling antagonists I've seen in a series.
The protagonists were not quite as interesting to me as the antagonist. I did not have the attachment to any of these characters that I did to the characters in the Inheritance trilogy. Ehiru was probably my favorite of them. I just never felt as attached to Sunandi or Nijiri. As a result, my reading of this book went fairly slowly. I went through the Inheritance trilogy really quickly, but this took me a long time. I had trouble getting sucked in, until near the end.
I enjoyed the ending, felt it was the right ending for the characters. it was sad in parts, although I cannot say it brought me to tears, which is something I've come to expect of this author. Still, I loved the setting and would love to read more about this world.
In the authors interview at the end she makes it clear that this is an ancient Egyptian based mythology and I was thrilled she was able to avoid too many of the religion and sexuality stereotypes that exist in modern times and can seep into a story, affecting it negatively (for me). The basic premise surrounds a magical system where Gatherers collect the souls of the dying, diseased, or mentally ill, thereby ending their lives peacefully. This dream essence is used by others to heal the sick and infirm, either mentally or physically and peace reins through the land as the average citizen knows they will end their lives at peace while receiving the cures they or their loved ones need in life.
The story revolves mostly around one gatherer in particular, Ehiru, and later his apprentice Nijiri. Early on Ehiru botches a gathering and finds himself tormented and thrust into the middle of a very complex and dark plot that I found incredibly well paced. Ehiru may be troubled but I was moved at how thoughtful and compassionate he was, even when he was at his lowest. Secure in his beliefs he nevertheless has seen and experienced enough to approach opposing ideals with the same introspection and consideration he gives to everything else. Racing to prevent war and to uncover the dark underbelly of his beloved land the book flies along and the growth of Ehiru, his apprentice Nijiri, and the Kisua ambassador Sunandi was amazingly well written as they struggled with their own demons and each others. Character creation in general was phenomenal, even the villains are not cookie cutter evil, plotting to undo the world for their own nefarious schemes but fully realized and sophisticated people that made it difficult to just dismiss or hate them.
For some it might be a bit difficult to get into as the entire mythology and cultural aspects are just there and unexplained until the book progresses and you get a better feel for how things are. There is no pages of info-dumps or villains spilling the whole plot to move things along but in my humble opinion that actually works to make the book a far better read. The authors interview with herself at the end was incredible and shed light on a number of things that I had wondered about but won't spoil for you and is a must read. Do yourself a favor and read/buy this book and don't skip the after.