Book Den Reviews: The Fifth Season

“The Fifth Season” by N. K. Jemisin enticed me from the moment I read the first page. A stunning example of in media res, the main character’s husband has just murdered her son and fled with their daughter. Jemisin thrust me into a strange new world filled with fear, hate and mystery.

Between chapters a perspective change occurs, literally and figuratively; from third person to first or the unconquerable second, and between a young woman, an older woman, and a little girl. Their connection consists of the sometimes gift, oftentimes curse of orogeny, a power over the Earth feared and despised by those without it. They can quell and cause natural disasters and maintain an awareness of the Earth straight down to its core.

The importance of self-identity played a major part in this book. The three protagonists, all at different stages in their lives with different views on their situations, have their worlds upturned directly by their orogeny. Each embarks on her own quest for knowledge and in doing so uncovers wonderful and terrible truths about the world.

“The Fifth Season” indeed never shies away from the horrors that make the world run. The most hated citizens of the world also keep it safe, silencing the earth when it starts to rumble. Even children who cannot tame their orogene powers have a role in protecting their world.

This book has earned itself a 10/10, and represents a stellar example of how fantasy does not always mean flights of fancy.