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The Killing Moon

(Dreamblood #1)

by
3.94  ·  Rating details ·  16,960 ratings  ·  2,017 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
...more
Kindle Edition, 442 pages
Published May 3rd 2012 by Orbit (first published May 1st 2012)
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Popular Answered Questions
Annie Not to be mean, but not wanting to buy books in case they are "disappointing" is exactly what libraries are for. A lot of public libraries also listen…moreNot to be mean, but not wanting to buy books in case they are "disappointing" is exactly what libraries are for. A lot of public libraries also listen when patrons are interested in a book they currently do not have, and budget permitting, can acquire it for you/their collection. Goodreads even has a little "library" button under the details of this book, which takes you to WorldCat, where you can type in your zipcode to see if there's a library near you with this book. I'll even post the link here: http://www.worldcat.org/title/killing...

Also, the Dreamblood duology was written after the Inheritance series. I personally feel this series is stronger, in terms of writing and world building, but I don't know how to answer your question as you left out what it was about The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms that you didn't like.

Editing to add: Orbit (the publisher) has a sample chapter of this book which is available here: http://www.orbitbooks.net/excerpt/the...

Hope that helps.(less)
Chris "Devolve into a mindless orgy"? I'm going to have to read "Hundred Thousand Kingdoms" again because I don't remember anything like that at all to see …more"Devolve into a mindless orgy"? I'm going to have to read "Hundred Thousand Kingdoms" again because I don't remember anything like that at all to see what I missed. I only remember one particularly notable scene toward the end that proves central to the trilogy's story line. I do, however, remember scenes involving multiple participants in "The Fifth Season" (i.e., more orgy-like). I've never felt Jemisin's use of sex in her books was "cheep"; i.e., gratuitous in a way that had little to do with character development, world building, or story progression.(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.94  · 
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carol.
May 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
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David - proud Gleeman in Branwen's adventuring party
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 magic
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Bradley
I found this one fairly slow going in comparison to how much I loved her other novels, oddly enough. Things went big-time with the Inheritance Cycle and MUCH bigger with The Broken Earth, so I felt like a floundering fish in a relatively deep exploration of two cultures where dream magic is shrouded with dark secrets and a very careful and gentle facade.

The best part is the magic and the world-building, in my honest opinion, but I really shouldn't overlook the importance of just how much ground
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Lauren (Shakespeare & Whisky)
“Evil was the most contagious of diseases, so virulent that no herb, surgery, or dream-humor could cure it. One’s sense of what was normal, acceptable, became distorted by proximity to wrongness; entire nations had succumbed this way, first to decadence, then collapse.”

To be totally honest I was pretty disappointed by this novel. N.K. Jemisin is one of the best fantasy authors currently writing. I rave about her Broken Earth series (The Fifth Season) constantly.

But I had a really hard time
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Felicia
Jan 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
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
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✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)


DNF at: 42% . Perseverance is me.

Warning: the gif is incredibly strong in this one. You are quite welcome.

Believe it or not, I was forced to DNF this book for medical reasons. Doctor's orders and stuff. I kid you not. Now why would Dr Prawn advise me to relegate this most fascinating book to the DNF Graveyard, you ask? Because too much adrenaline. Yes, that's right. This story is so bloody shrimping thrilling and such an exhilarating roller coaster ride that I heart palpitations while reading
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Samantha
3.25 stars - this took some time for me to get into but I was enjoying it by the end. I did not, however, feel as attached to the characters as I have in her other series. This also concluded in a way that makes me wonder how it’s a duology...
Becca & The Books
While I found the world and the magic system interesting and loved the writing style, I felt like the majority of this book was heavily political dialogue and so it failed to grab my interest.
mina reads™️
i found the plot and characters lacking, too much monologuing, too little intrigue, too little personality. too little anything to make the 400 pages worth it. pretty writing, interesting world building/magic system but not enough to make this an overall enjoyable reading experience for me
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
Nicole
Sep 28, 2021 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, 2021
2.5 stars

After enjoying the Broken Earth trilogy, I was excited to read Jemisin's other books. It's obvious that she's not only a good writer but also a very creative one. This book is known to be loosely based on ancient Egypt, an era I'm familiar with, and set in the desert with season floods. And while the world is interesting and the premise sounded promising, the execution was underwhelming.


We follow 3 characters mainly in this book as they try to uncover some hidden secrets and plots. I w

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Charlotte Kersten
“True peace required the presence of justice, not just the absence of conflict.”

So What’s It About?

In the ancient city-state of Gujaareh, peace is the only law. Upon its rooftops and among 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 conspiracy blooms within Gujaareh’s great temple, the Gatherer Ehiru must
...more
Jess Owens
Not my favorite Jemisin but this is the first book she wrote so I can understand. Very interesting premise of a religion where there are Gatherers who essentially kill people for their goddess but “peacefully” by sending them into the dreamworld and collecting their dream blood. Dreamblood and dreamseed (😵‍💫), dreambile and dream something else are used for healing. Cool. Something or someone is killing people in their sleep, what can it be? Cool. But I never felt invested in the story. Per norm ...more
Jemppu
Feb 22, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jemisin writes a multiculturally appealing, rich world.

Being introduced to Jemisin's work through the outstanding Fifth Season, what most intrigues me about all of these 'other Jemisin', is to observe the writing without the inventive linguistic devices and the distinct structural suspense, which were perfected to be such a striking feature in the aforementioned.

Also present here was the one thing, which seems constant throughout Jemisin's work - and which I find most agreeable: the wont to buil
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Markus
Dec 26, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, fantasy
“The shadows of Ina-Karekh are the place where nightmares dwell, but not their source. Never forget: the shadowlands are not elsewhere. We create them. They are within.”

A well-written, well-structured story in a fascinating setting, just hampered by both the storyline and the characters being severely underdeveloped and dull.

Still, Jemisin writes good stuff, all right.
Algernon (Darth Anyan)
Oct 03, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
[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
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Mike (the Paladin)
Aug 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
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
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Gavin
Aug 01, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This turned out to be a bit of a bore. I had high expectations for The Killing Moon due to its non-typical fantasy setting, it was loosely based on ancient Egypt, but N.K.Jemisin's description of her fantasy world was so sparse that I only ever managed to form a vague picture of it.

I was not a great fan of Jemisin's writing in general. As well as the sparse descriptions of the settings this book was lacking in background information that would have made the world, characters, and plot easier to
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Anthony
While not as monumentally successful an achievement as N.K Jemisin’s later work — the brilliant, shattering, transcendent Broken Earth Trilogy — I remain nonetheless very impressed by many aspects of this novel. In its finest scenes, an incredibly rare and welcome complexity of feelings and ideas suffuses the crystalline prose. And the world she has created — with its various and specifically-drawn cultures, societies, histories, and religions — presents itself as fully-imagined and authentic as ...more
Bethany
Jul 09, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lgbtq, black-authors
Read for this video: https://youtu.be/IHg8zvKyM9k

It is always such a joy to read something by Jemisin! The Killing Moon is a richly layered story set in world with dream magic and dangerous political machinations. She is truly a master of world-building, slowly unfurling a bit at a time, creating nuanced characters and asking difficult questions. I really enjoyed this book and look forward to reading the rest of her backlist. This was the first book she wrote (though not her first published book
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♥Milica♥
I had semi-high expectations for The Killing Moon and it did not meet them. But at least I can say I finally read a Jemisin book.

The writing style was my biggest issue and it hindered my enjoyment of the book. It didn't work for me at all.

I was also a bit confused a lot of the time, not just in the beginning. And I didn't care about any of the characters except the Prince in a few scenes.

The pacing started off slow and it never really picked up. But, the storyline wasn't bad. I just wish ever
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Stuart
The Killing Moon: A challenging and excellently-crafted work
Originally posted at Fantasy Literature
N.K. Jemisin is my favorite fantasy author of this decade. In just six years, she has already established herself as a major force with three fantasy series to date, INHERITANCE (2010-2011), DREAMBLOOD (2012), and BROKEN EARTH (2015~). What makes her so distinctive is her incredible world-building skills, strong and complex characters and themes, and insistence on avoiding the overused conventions
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Gabrielle
A story about an ancient civilization that worships death and dreams and bears a striking resemblance to Ancient Egypt as written by the brilliant N.K. Jemisin? Yes, please!!! A couple of years ago, my husband, who is a slow reader, devoured Jemisin’s “Broken Earth” trilogy (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...) in less than a couple of weeks. His enthusiasm was very contagious, and I was impressed with her stunning world building and moving stories. I couldn’t wait to read more!

The Dreamblo
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Stefan Bach

“It was said that the Gods favored fools because they were entertaining to watch.”


Remarkable prose, stunning and unique worldbuilding filled with intricate characters, and unapologetic and daring questions book asks of you throughout reading it.

“Magic was mother’s milk to the people of Gujaareh.
They were steeped in its necessity, proud of its benefits, dismissive of its consequences.
It was impossible to understand Gujaareh without understanding the source of its power.”


Story f
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Donna
Nov 12, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This was the first book in a two part series, but strangely enough, the way it ended, with everything tied up neatly, it felt like a standalone. I read it after The Broken Earth Trilogy, even though this series came before that one. And I could not help comparing the two, with The Broken Earth books coming out the winners. I had thought those books grim, but this book was even more so since it lacked the abundant humor in that other series, which took the edge off the hopelessness of that world. ...more
Traci
May 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, favorites
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
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Kitty G Books
This is a book I picked up hoping to love but it didn't quite work for me. I have read the Broken Earth trilogy by this author and loved that, but this series (written before that one) just felt a little lacking in some areas for my liking.

We focus on a world where people who are known as Gatherers have the ability to 'Gather' people and send them along to their deity. They do this by entering the dreams of the person who needs to be 'Gathered' and then guiding their soul along the pathway to t
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Alina
Aug 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It takes some time to get into the story, as it starts with a whole new creation myth for an exquisite world, new and unknown concepts. I heartly recommend reading the glossary at the end before starting the book, as it may considerably ease your immersion into the story. I loved how each chapter begins with a quote from Hetawa's Law or Wisdom, helping you better understand the society and its system of beliefs.

The characters are exceptionally well written, all complex and layered, with flawed a
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Serge
This was the September 2021 pick for The Fantasy Guild book club!



“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
...more
Chelsea
Oct 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
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N. K. Jemisin lives and works in New York City.

Other books in the series

Dreamblood (2 books)
  • The Shadowed Sun (Dreamblood, #2)

Articles featuring this book

N.K. Jemisin, one of today's most beloved fantasy authors, is back this month with a brand-new series, the first since she wrapped up her...
125 likes · 25 comments
“True peace required the presence of justice, not just the absence of conflict.” 80 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.” 27 likes
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