The Killing Moon (Dreamblood, #1)
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The Killing Moon (Dreamblood #1)

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3.86 of 5 stars 3.86  ·  rating details  ·  2,610 ratings  ·  450 reviews
The city burned beneath the Dreaming Moon.

In the ancient city-state of Gujaareh, peace is the only law. Upon its rooftops and amongst the shadows of its cobbled streets wait the Gatherers - the keepers of this peace. Priests of the dream-goddess, their duty is to harvest the magic of the sleeping mind and use it to heal, soothe...and kill those judged corrupt.

But when a c...more
Paperback, 418 pages
Published May 1st 2012 by Hachette Book Group
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Carol. [All cynic, all the time]
Aug 18, 2012 Carol. [All cynic, all the time] rated it 5 of 5 stars Recommends it for: you, if you want an unusual fantasy read
Every now and then, something special brings a new flavor, a blending of colors, an amazing moment, that just leaves me saying 'wow.' Jemisin did that for me in The Killing Moon. An unusual story line, an interesting fantasy world, multi-culti characters, and theological sophistication while being oh-so-readable made for an engrossing, delicious read. I sat down today and read until it was finished, breaking only for dinner and to follow the sun as it shifted around the yard.

The story takes plac...more
Regina
The Killing Moon is the first in a new epic fantasy series by the author of the The Inheritance Trilogy, N. K. Jemisin. Jemisin has said that The Killing Moon is her "homage to epic fantasy — as opposed to the Inheritance Trilogy, which was more my eyeroll at epic fantasy". This book hit me hard and stole me away from reality, completely. I was not expecting it. I had read great things about the Inheritance Trilogy, which I really need to read (I now fully understand that I really need to read i...more
David Green
Beautiful, complex, and refreshingly original, The Killing Moon shines bright!

Ehiru-the dreamer- Ehiru is a Gatherer in the city-state of Gujaareh. He has devoted his life to serving the goddess Hananja. Upon taking a commission, he enters a person's dreams and gathers the dreamer's soul so that they will live in peace forever, even though their body dies in the process. Ehiru has never questioned his faith...until now! After a Gathering goes horribly wrong, Ehiru begins to doubt his own magical...more
Felicia
Ah NK Jemisin, you can do no wrong. For some reason it took me a long time to pick this up, mainly because I loved her OTHER world so much I got pouty that she was moving onto another one. Well, she built the last one to be amazing, she does no less in this one, perhaps even BETTER.

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. The Gatherers are some of the...more
Chelsea
Wow... That was amazing. This is a fantastic book. 2012 continues to prove a fertile year for fantasy with the first in a new series by NK Jemisin. So far, it appears that there will only be two books, this volume and the next, titled The Shadowed Sun, which I'll be acquiring as soon as it comes out, which is thankfully on a payday for me.

Overall, I enjoyed this book more than The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms. The growth in her writing is extremely evident. Her distinct authorial voice is still th...more
Traci
I'm really struggling with my rating here. I loved this book. Absolutely and completely. The whole time I was reading it I had that magical feeling going when we read a new favorite book, one of many and many, for the first time. But my conscious is questioning whether it deserves a full five score. For now I'm saying yes. But for any objectiveness you can bring it down to four and a half if you wish.

...Where to start? I'm definitely not going to try to explain the plot. But let's just say for w...more
Mike (the Paladin)
One of the things I say frequently is, "this was an interesting book". Well, this was an interesting book. The world according to the author has multiple influences...though it springs largely from ancient Egypt. There are influences from all over however and if you care to look you can see them.

Actually however I'd suggest you just relax and enjoy the book. This is an exercise in detailed and skilled world building. Ms. Jemisin had to build the world, lay out the "magic system" and then build t...more
TheBookSmugglers
First Impressions:

Ana: You might not remember this but Jemisin’s debut novel The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms knocked my socks off so completely I became an insta-fan. Thus, it was a non-brainer that I would be reading her new Dreamblood Duology especially considering its Ancient Egypt-inspired setting (hey, growing up I wanted to be an Egyptologist). And HOLY MOLY, for its beautifully realised setting, its complex characters, its brilliantly developed story, The Killing Moon is made of 100% Awesom...more
A.E. Marling
NK Jemisin's best yet. Halfway through the story I worried resolution would be deferred to the next book, which will be released shortly, but the author slammed the end of the story down like a card player laying a flush of spades. I would love to see more fantasy like this, featuring an end at the end, a rich setting at the beginning, and a magic awash with moral uncertainty.

This book revolves around moral dilemma. Dreamblood seems to be the energy released when a soul is shoved/escorted to the...more
Stefan
As is so often the case with great novels, the opening chapter of N.K. Jemisin’s The Killing Moon offers a snapshot of the conflicts and relationships that end up driving the whole story. We meet the Gatherer Ehiru as he stealthily travels through the city-state Gujaareh at night, collecting tithes of “dreamblood” for the goddess Hananja from its dying or corrupt inhabitants. This dreamblood will then be used by his order’s Sharers to heal and help others. Ehiru’s first commission is an old man...more
Algernon
[9/10]
N. K. Jemisin was already established for me as a very promising newcomer on the fantasy scene, with her Inheritance series. I was both intrigued and apprehensive about her decision to try something completely different for her second outing, thinking of some rock bands who put out an excellent debut album, only to follow with a lukewarm, rushed second, containing outtakes or failed experiments. But I like her courage to explore new subjects and not stick with one successful setting for an...more
Nafiza
Sometimes, if you are very lucky, books come along when you need them to. I was very lucky that The Killing Moon arrived when it did and I chose to read it when I did. The Killing Moon is Jemisin’s second trilogy after her widely successful Inheritance Trilogy and as I had read and enjoyed her debut work, I figured I would try the Dreamblood series. Jemisin’s world building is so detailed and exquisite and hey, she is blurbed by Kate Elliott. I am not one to usually read a book by the success of...more
Nikki
I saved this duology for quite a while before reading, because I don't know when there'll be more of Jemisin's work for me to enjoy. And enjoy it always is: I was warned that my anxiety issues might be sparked a bit by the world set up here, but they weren't.

God, I loved the characters. Ehiru just -- at first I feared that he might be too sure of himself, too arrogant, or perhaps even worse, too perfect. But he wasn't perfect, and I ached for him, and for Nijiri because of how much he loved him....more
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
The Killing Moon did not grab me right out of the gate. This wasn't a huge concern, though. I haven't read a ton of epic fantasy yet, but I've read enough to know that you have to give it time. Creating a new world, one so intricate and different from the one we live in takes time. You have to give the author a chance to set up the world and the characters.

A lot of readers have zero interest in epic fantasy. The books are long, and, as already mentioned, there is generally quite a bit of set up...more
Chris
I have two words for you: Ninja. Priests.

There you go, that should really be enough for you to go out and buy this book. I suppose if you need more, though, there is a whole "plot" and "world" and "characters" and stuff. But even Jemisin says that the initial idea that got her started writing was ninja priests, and everything else just kind of built up from there.

Welcome, then, to the great land of Gujaareh, a land not entirely unlike our own ancient Egypt. It rests alongside a great river that...more
Jenny (Reading Envy)
I won a copy of this in Twitter, and was really glad I did! I had read Book 1 of the Inheritance Trilogy by the same author, The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, which is one of those books that wasn't bad, but just was clearly not my style. (Worth a read, though, and is up for a Nebula Award.)

The things I liked about The Inheritance Trilogy are even stronger in The Killing Moon, and I think we can start assuming these are just Jemisin's strengths - the world building is the best part. She has crafted...more
Cezara
I'm not a rabid fantasy fan and until reading this book I was more or less unable to pinpoint why. I love sci-fi to death, and most sci-fi is basically future magic, so what is it about fantasy that keeps me from enjoying it just as much? The answer I've managed to come to so far is lack of variety. Most fantasy I've read (with the exception of Robin Hobb's Liveship Traders trilogy - Ship of Magic, The Mad Ship, Ship of Destiny) goes more or less along the same lines: a bunch of white men with b...more
Matthew
I'm going back and forth as to whether I like the book more than the three star review I'm giving it. Largely I think it's because I'm internally comparing it to the Inheritance Trilogy, her first trilogy completed last year, which should be considered one of the best fantasy series of the last couple of decades. Its an unfair comparison, but I think it showcases some of the lows and highs of the Killing Moon.

The highs:

- Jemisin's writing style is as strong as ever. The narrative flows and there...more
Grace
Jemisin can build mythology like nobody's business. I love that she doesn't just do the clean types of gods, she creates the weird twisty old gods, the ones with deep roots in nature and the sweaty, amoral genesis stories. Seriously, this must be how religions are created - people like Jemisin developing a creation myth so delicious, you WANT to believe it.

(Also, Jemisin is one of the only authors who can write "loindrapes" into a book and I'll go with it. Anyone else tries that, and I scoff. Sh...more
Ruth
C2012:FWFTB: Gujaareh, Gatherers, dream, harvest, magic. Ms Jemisin appears around the book blogging sites as an author of note. Sadly, my normal book source did not stock the first books for some time so before I knew it I had reserved this one thinking that it was the first of her books.
It can be read alone but I did feel, for the first third of the story, that I was missing some background and I had to keep going to the front pages to reassure myself that this was indeed the first of a new se...more
Derek (Guilty of thoughtcrime)
Imagine a society very much like ancient Egypt, but clearly not on our Earth as their planet (strictly a moon) orbits a gas giant. Now imagine that this society has learned how to harness the power of Jung's "collective unconscious", collecting the power of dreams and even a person's entire "life force" to cure disease and injury.

This is Gujaareh. The Goddess Hananja's Gatherers go out into the night and gather the Dreamblood and Dreambile of those judged corrupt by the Hetawa - Gujaareh's relig...more
Dragana
This is my first encounter with N.K. Jemisin. I planned to read The Inheritance Trilogy for some time now, but I accidentally stumbled upon this book and thought 'Why not?'

The start was rough. Unknown terminology, world, customs... And each chapter sported a different protagonist. It took a lot of concentration and some patience until I understood it. But eventually the book got its claws in me, and I was reading chapter after chapter eager to see what happens next.

It's hard commenting on the ch...more
Casey Hampton
I figure that if you want to know what this story is about, you'll red the synopsis. I always assume that this goes without saying, but then again here I am saying it... To my mind, the rating system isn't so much about determining a definitive degree of a book's good/bad but rather the reader's experience with the book.

I liked what Jemison sets out to do in this story and I found her attention to detail regarding culture and tradition nicely constructed. A few times I was drawn into the narrat...more
Kasyap
I loved this book a lot. Far better than “the hundred thousand kingdoms”. Smooth writing, excellent wordbuilding and the wonderful characters can absorb you completely.

The story is centered on the two city-states of Gujareeh and Kisua. Gujareeh is a highly ordered society where every caste has its place and role and everything revolves around the worship of their dream goddess Hananjah and the balance and peace that is central to the Gujareen society.
Kisua, shares a lot of cultural similarities...more
Avivs
I really love this book.
The writhing was beautiful and the characters were real and alive.
Very original setting and a great paste for the plot.
I Highly recommend this one.
Rachel Neumeier
First, assuming you’ve read NK Jemisin’s first trilogy, the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms trilogy . . . let me say that this duology really doesn’t have the same feel. Instead of the very close first-person narrative, here we have a much more scattered third-person narrative. In THE KILLING MOON, we have three main pov protagonists: the Gatherer Ehiru, with whom we start and who felt to me like the primary protagonist until quite far into the book; Nijiri, his apprentice, who grows up the hard way d...more
Kenya Wright
DAMN IT! This is a DNf!

I wanted to love this book for all of the WRONG reasons:

One-- because the author is a black woman.... yeah I said it! I wanted to read it and be like woop woop black woman unite in fantasy!!
I'm not perfect. I see race and gender. :-(

(However, I will hump all races! So I'm not all bad.)


Two-- the world building was so freakin awesome! Oh god such great stuff! The little things like what people gave others for gifts or dining traditions or relationships and how people relate...more
Nancy O'Toole
Gujaareh is a city of peace, but does that peace come at too high a price? All corruption is quickly stamped out by the city’s Gatherers, who give all criminals a peaceful death in their sleep. Ehiru is a Gatherer who passionately believes that what he does is right and just. Then one of his Gatherings goes terribly wrong, and Ehiru finds his faith in himself and his world shaken. Where does the true corruption in Gujaareh lie, and will Ehiru manage to defeat it before the madness that lies deep...more
Oni
Dec 18, 2013 Oni rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: fantasy
Not a usual fantasy book, filled with knights, dragons, elves, dwarves and magicians. I think the world of fantasy is quite saturated already with all those. Jemisin is indeed a spring in the bareland of fantasy.

The story moves around three characters: Ehiru, a Gatherer, Nijiri, an apprentice, and Sunandi, a female ambassador. The setting is an impending war between two nation,which these three character want to prevent.

First, I like the world that she created in this novel. It is not your commo...more
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N. K. Jemisin lives and works in New York City.
More about N.K. Jemisin...
The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms (The Inheritance Trilogy, #1) The Broken Kingdoms (The Inheritance Trilogy, #2) The Kingdom of Gods (The Inheritance Trilogy, #3) The Shadowed Sun (Dreamblood, #2) Clarkesworld Magazine Issue 50

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“True peace required the presence of justice, not just the absence of conflict.” 15 likes
“Suffering is part of life,' she said. 'All the parts of life are jumbled up together; you can't separate out just the one thing.' She parred his hand again, kindly. 'I could let you kill me now, lovely man, and have peace and good dreams forever. But who knows what I get instead, if I stay? Maybe time to see a new grandchild. Maybe a good joke that sets me laughing for days. Maybe another handsome young fellow flirting with me.' She grinned toothlessly, then let loose another horrible, racking cough. Ehiru steadies her with shaking hands. 'I want every moment of my life, pretty man, the painful and the sweet alike. Until the very end. If these are all the memories I get for eternity, I want to take as many of them with me as I can.” 10 likes
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