Book Review: The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K.Jemisin


I didn’t realize that this was N.K.Jemisin’s debut novel until later on during my reading, so I guess it was too much of me to expect a brilliant book like The Fifth Season. This book was enjoyable enough, especially the world building and some good characters.

This book is the story of Yiene Darr, the outcast granddaughter of the ruler of the hundred thousand kingdoms who has been summoned to the capital city of Sky as named one of the three heirs. We understand early on that this is going to turn into a tale of political intrigue, scheming and plotting. What surprised me is that I got more than I bargained for. In bits and pieces, we get to know the story of the God’s war, the winners and losers and the enslaving of the Night Lord and his godling children who now serve the ruling Arameri family. How their lives get interconnected with Yiene and her quest for truth and freedom forms the remainder of the book.

Yiene is equal parts fierce, timid, impulsive and cautious whereas the Night Lord comes across as a clichéd brooding bad turned good hero of a romantic novel. The childlike godling Sieh is probably the most fascinating and fun in the book. This book is clearly established as the first of a trilogy and it looks like the intention was for extensive mythical world building, which is done quite well rather than well developed characterizations. The series shows promise and I hope the sequel is much more satisfying.

Rating: ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

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