December 15, 2016

The Fifth Season

The Fifth Season
N.K. Jemisin
Image result for the fifth season book cover
(more like 3.5)
I have no idea where this book came from. It was on my TBR, but I don't ever remember reading the description or having it recommended to me. Either way, it was pretty enjoyable.

This book is pretty weird, in the sense that I haven't really read anything like it plot or structure-wise. It kind of jumps in between 3 seemingly separate but actually very close stories. One is the story of Damaya, a young orogene, or someone who can move the earth by will. She finds this out by almost killing one of her classmates. Orogenes (or Roggas as the vulgar term) are seen as less than human. People are taught to be afraid of them since they don't always know how to control their powers. Damaya is taken by a Guardian to a place where they train orogenes to control their power, and to be unfailingly obedient.
Another story is that of Syenite who is a four-ringer (out of 10 possible rings which rank the mastery of orogeny). She is sent on a special mission with a ten-ringer named Alabaster to go clear coral from a distant bay area. She was also ordered to have his child. All Syenite wants is to be like her mentor and gain more rings.
The last story is about Essun, whose husband just killed their child after he found out that he was a rogga, just like his mother. Essun is broken by the discovery of her son's body, and seeks revenge on her husband who took their daughter and fled their comm (community).
The world-building in this book is extremely important and intricate, but it can also be confusing. I'm not sure what the limits are to the orogene's powers or how they get their powers. But, the reason I enjoyed the story, other than seeing how the three women were connected, was that there were much needed themes of discrimination and humanity in there. We empathize with the orogenes who are viewed horribly just because of something they were born with and don't always understand. They are taught that unless they follow orders, they will be killed or be a danger to everyone in the world. Some say they understand why this is needed, others feel helpless to change the view of their kind, and others want to rise up and do something about the way society view them.
It ends on a sort of cliffhanger, which was okay but not really enough to make me want to pick up the next book RIGHT NOW, so I will continue but maybe not for a little bit.
Everything reminded me of this:
Image result for earthbending gif

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