Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Broken Kingdoms-N.K. Jemisin

The Broken Kingdoms
N.K. Jemisin
Orbit, Nov 3 2010, $13.99
ISBN: 9780316043960

A decade ago in the city of Shadow, the world tree sprung up after an incredible amount of magic was released. Blind artist Oree works in the shade of the world tree by selling junk to tourists visiting the city to see the tree.

Oree conceals her real talent as a painter from everyone by drawing only inside her home. When she finds a homeless man living inside a muck bin, Oree feels sorry for him. She takes him to her home only to learn what happens to Good Samaritans. A God is murdered in plain sight and anyone who Oree cherishes is harmed forcing the artist to come out of the shadows of her house to defend those she cares about.

The second Inheritance fantasy is a terrific tale held together by the fascinating Oree who has come a long way in the decade that has passed since the events of The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms. Oree is super as she defends weaker people from bullies in a realm that believes only the strong survive. Although The Broken Kingdoms can stand alone as a deep character driven thriller, fans will want to read its excellent predecessor The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms as a great fantasy opening act but also to see how far the intrepid reclusive blind artist has come to be a champion of the downtrodden as she can see the Distance.

Harriet Klausner

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