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The Rosewater Redemption

(The Wormwood Trilogy #3)

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  603 ratings  ·  77 reviews
The Rosewater Redemption concludes the award-winning, cutting edge Wormwood trilogy, set in Nigeria, by one of science fiction's most engaging new voices.

Life in the newly independent city-state of Rosewater isn't everything its citizens were expecting.

The Mayor finds that debts incurred during the insurrection are coming back to haunt him. Nigeria isn't willing to let
Paperback, 416 pages
Published October 15th 2019 by Orbit
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Average rating 4.12  · 
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 ·  603 ratings  ·  77 reviews

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Nov 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This, the final book in The Wormwood Trilogy, was as enjoyably imaginative, trippy, and compelling as the first two books. Tade Thompson’s work is a delightfully original mashup of tropes including alien invasions, comic book-style superpowers, afrofuturism, and badass female cops.

He’s definitely a writer to watch, with a great ear for dialogue, a welcome skill at crafting surprising plots, and an invigorating blend of dark humor and authentic heart.
All three of these Wormwood books are perfect for Weird fans. Not that you have to be weird as a fan to enjoy them, merely that you must enjoy Weird fiction, be tolerant of cthulhu-like alien entities who provide rather miraculous services in return for a foothold in humanity. Wait. Isn't this just an alien invasion story?

Sure, like Fight Club is just a story about self-help groups.

We get a solid return for main characters in the previous two, get thrown into time-travel, end-of-the-world,
Oct 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
A worthy, fast paced ending to this outstanding SF series. Colour me a Tade Thompson fan girl.

The final solution fell a bit flat for me, therefore 'only' 4 stars. Yet the buildup had all the wonderful blunt prose spiked with humor and self-deprecation that I adore. We learn more about Oyin Da as all the embosomed characters once more enter the stage trying to save (with varying success) humankind - while Layi only wants to join the first Rosewater Pride march, just in case he turns out gay.

K.J. Charles
Oct 20, 2019 added it
Shelves: african, sf
Spectacular ending to the epic trilogy about a slow-burn alien invasion centred in a breakaway ex-Nigerian city-republic. The whole thing is brilliant, imagined on a gigantic scale, with a huge cast (extremely well managed, I had no trouble picking up the story threads from where we left off last time) and marvellous description. Gloriously imaginative, well written, manages a lot of sometimes pretty bleak plot themes and elements while hanging on to the humanity of all involved, so it's ...more
Dawn C
Oct 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thompson has really created a unique, genre blending trilogy, so full of twists and turns that it’s impossible to guess where it’s going. The language is fresh, the city vibrantly alive with real people fighting for their existence between the alien entity of Wormwood and politicians with an agenda of their own. I’ll admit I lost track of what was going on quite a few times, but I kept being mesmerized by this fast paced, almost thriller-like scifi slash adult urban fantasy slash horror slash ...more
Alex Bright
Dec 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A satisfying and thought-provoking ending to a brilliant science fiction trilogy.

Maybe I'll have a more specific review in the future, but that will do for now.
Oct 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Rating: +


The Rosewater Redemption concludes the award-winning, cutting edge Wormwood trilogy, set in Nigeria, by one of science fiction’s most engaging new voices.

Life in the newly independent city-state of Rosewater isn’t everything its citizens were expecting.

The Mayor finds that debts incurred during the insurrection are coming back to haunt him. Nigeria isn’t willing to let Rosewater go without a fight. And the city’s alien inhabitants are threatening mass murder for their own
This was a really good finish to what has been a wildly imaginative and inventive series with a big cast of characters. There are all sorts of elements at play in this last story about an alien invasion and all the people involved with living with it or stopping it. I was a little worried I'd have some trouble getting back into this book, but Tade Thompson handles the many perspectives and time periods well, and I found myself comfortably back in the thick of the complicated plot. There's plenty ...more
Shaun Hutchinson
A wonderful conclusion to a really unique series. Can't wait to see what Thompson comes up with next.
Dec 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, scifi
Although this feels like a very obvious thing to say, it merits heavy emphasis: the Rosewater trilogy is enormously fun to read. I've read 118 novels so far this year and both 'The Rosewater Redemption' and The Rosewater Insurrection are among the three I enjoyed most. Tade Thompson is quite simply a brilliant writer. His characters are appealing, his plots wonderfully twisty, his world-building ingenious, his pacing impeccable, and his themes cleverly developed. Each book in the Rosewater ...more
Luke Burrage
Dec 27, 2019 rated it really liked it

A really great set of novels! I very much enjoyed them all. It's a good trilogy that doesn't try to continue the protagonist's story past the first novel, and instead finds new people and stories to follow in the next two instalments.

Full review on my podcast, SFBRP episode #415:
Dec 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Pretty good wrap up to this trilogy, though not completely satisfying. The story has so many threads to follow at this point, this installment felt a little disjointed. On the other hand, having Oyin Da mostly narrate and having fewer (no?) time jumps made the narrative easier to follow in some ways. Thompson writes great characters, and I’ll be looking for other work from him.

Overall, this is a good trilogy and gives the reader a lot to think about, especially in terms of an alien invasion
Michael Howley
Nov 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: borderlands-rec
I rarely read the third part of a trilogy and want to immediately restart the series. This book is a perfect amalgam of what I loved about the first two parts. Tade Thompson does a good job of reminding you what happened before, though there were some times I couldn't quite place a character or two.

Like the best sci-fi, this series asks a lot of interesting questions about the nature of humanity and our place in the world. What makes it even better it's written by someone with a view and a voice
Oct 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A phenomenal ending to a truly great sf trilogy. Unlike the slow burn of the first two installments, REDEMPTION by comparison hits the ground running, covering an astonishing amount of fresh ground while expertly weaving together new and existing narrative and thematic strands with truly baffling ease. I devoured this deliciously weird, unsettling, and reliably slippery inversion of Lovecraftian sff with breathless abandon, my one regret being that like all great trilogies, the ROSEWATER cycle ...more
I thought that in 2020, I might write a short or not-so-short review for every book read. A challenging resolution, but we'll see.

Anyway, to the point.
Short review: bleh, ok.
Longer review: All the things that I liked from the previous books, the things that first got me hooked, are still there, but there is not real development. Instead it seems like the writing has regressed. The writing has always seemed to me like a script for an action movie, but now it feels like scenes are lifted directly
Peter Hollo
Nov 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It's rare to find something truly original these days. This trilogy really fits the bill. Brilliantly written, deeply strange, very thoughtful and thought-provoking. Thompson has created an important meditation on colonialism but it's crazy, profane, violent and beautiful in equal measure.
Now they're all out, you've got no excuse not to read all three in a row!
Nov 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Now this was brilliant end to a fantastic science fiction series and each story gets a pay off so well - read this!!!

Full review -
Oct 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Originally reviewed at Parsecs & Parchment

***Spoilers ahead for the first two Wormwood books***

A spectacular conclusion to the genre-blending Wormwood trilogy from one of the most imaginative writers in SFF today. The story of Rosewater is one of insidious alien invasion, self-serving humanity, powerful interest groups, and running through it all the subtle optimism that imperfect, even cynical people can do good things while making mistakes along the way.

There are multiple story threads
Jan 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
I loved the first two book in this trilogy, but half way through the final installment, I had to force myself to keep picking Redemption up and thought that (at that point, if it kept up like it was) I wouldn't be able to give it more than 3/5 stars. I struggled to articulate to myself what I disliked so much about this volume, and finally identified this (again, about the first half of the book): there are almost no interpersonal connections between characters. Oh, sure, all our favorite ...more
Oct 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing

4.5 Stars Round Up to 5 Stars for GR Rating

4 Stars for Narration by Bayo Gbadamosi (It would have been 5 but there are still errors that need to be taken out. (view spoiler))

Everything that lead up to the ending was great! This one held all of the alien weirdness, interesting perspectives and reveals that made the whole trilogy come together. I wish each of the books were like this one but realize that the
Charles Payet
Oct 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely RIVETING!

To give context to how much I enjoyed this, I can only compare it to how much I love Tolkien's LOTR, which I've read over 30 times in the last 35 years. It will certainly take several more read-throughs to fully absorb and appreciate what Tade Thompson has created in his Wormwood Trilogy.

I just finished the concluding book of the trilogy this morning, so I don't want to say too much, as I might give something away. There's no way I'd want to take anything away from the pure
Stefan Grieve
Nov 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
A fitting conclusion to an epic yet also introspective series, this satisfyingly ties up all lose ends and tells an entertaining story to boot.
There is a melancholy tone to this tale, yet there are fun moments as well and it doesn't fall to being maudlin or present cheap sentimentality; It is still powerful and interesting.
I think the best part of the book is the character arch of the first books point of view protagonist (he is less prominent a character and not point of view in this book ),
Feb 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
A strong finish to the Rosewater trilogy. Thompson writes with the flair and imagination of early Gibson, melding together culture, politics, mycology, and weird science in a vivid Nigerian setting.

I think it's hard to understate how well crafted this work is. Rather than opening with a synopsis, Thompson uses a montage technique to swiftly reintroduce all his core characters, something I haven't seen before but was incredibly effective here. The dialogue is punchy, with political and racial
Nov 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I need a new word that goes beyond 'outstanding', 'excellent', 'stellar' and other such adjectives. The final part of the Rosewater trilogy is glorious. Most of the surviving characters from the earlier books come into a sharper, brighter focus - often in ways that surprise, developing a whole new dimension to their story that is enthralling and bewildering in equal measure.

The quality of the writing and the use of words makes my heart sing. Tade Thompson is blunt and poetic in equal measure,
Georgina Bawden
Jan 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
A really satisfying conclusion to the trilogy.

I loved how it dug into the parallels with colonialism in Nigeria, I loved the mechanics of the xenosphere, I loved the weird and wonderful alien creatures. I loved how we set up the delicate balance that is the city of Rosewater in book one and then by book three have proceeded to completely smash that balance and show us the inevitable results.

There are characters and relationships here that I bought into more than others. I like Aminat but in
Dec 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A Fabulous & Epic Series
Rosewater is a fabulous and fascinating series with a great mix of characters, themes and ideas. This series is now part of my all-time favourites, one I will be recommending for years to come. Lots of other great reviews to read, and I wanted to avoid spoilers, suffice to say if you like interesting sci-fi, questions about environment, culture, politics and relationships, then this is a series for you. One criticism is that initially I found the story time jumps a
Nov 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I'm giving this book 5 stars, mostly because the 3 Rosewood novels together are some of the best sci-fi that I have ever read. It's all so compelling: a world seeded with alien cells, a reality shaped by shared experiences, and a real-life Nigeria brimming to the seams with vibrancy. The characters are believably flawed and their actions are full of mistakes and their consequences. The conclusion of Kaaro's story is one of the best ever. Not to spoil anything but the Gryphon gets to be the bad ...more
Nov 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
So I needed to know how it ended so it jumped the queue. Essentially, it was a good ending to the series, as it dealt with the main issues plaguing the city of Rosewater and while some of the characters didn't have the best endings, everyone of significance was dealt with in some way or shape. However, the ending was wrapped up a little too quickly I found, considering how difficult it was to deal with Rosewater in the first two books. Either way, I still enjoyed it. It is still totally unique, ...more
JGrant '71
Nov 30, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
A Fitting End

Much better than the 2nd installment. The insurrection is over, but instability reigns as the solution found with the Homies is not neutral. Leading the way to stopping the discreet invasion & take-over is a nucleus of Aminat, Kaaro, Oyin Da, Femi and Bad Fish (+ Eric) and their counter-attack is imaginative, and reflective of what can be done when pulling people/resources/ideas together.

Looking back at the last 2 books in particular, the constant shifting of scenes &
The concluding book in the Rosewater trilogy. There really isn’t a way to describe it more fully than that without spoilers for the first two books.
I still enjoy the rather different perspective on alien life that these books offer, but I think they get a bit too complex and unnecessarily convoluted as they go along. Sometimes it was quite difficult in this one to work out who is talking and which bit of which plot they are in at the moment. Are they alive, or dead or something else, where are
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Norwescon: The Rosewater Redemption by Tade Thompson 3 5 Feb 09, 2020 03:18AM  

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Other books in the series

The Wormwood Trilogy (3 books)
  • Rosewater (The Wormwood Trilogy, #1)
  • The Rosewater Insurrection (The Wormwood Trilogy, #2)
“Human consciousness time-travels all the time, albeit at a low level. Sensory input that arrives in the brain can have multiple interpretations, and the brain has to choose a “reality”, which takes about half a second. Once it has chosen, it does a temporal shift of awareness back to the moment of sensory perception.” 0 likes
“You know, after the British left, we kept the trains,” 0 likes
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