Christal's Reviews > The Broken Kingdoms

The Broken Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin
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's review
Mar 04, 2012

really liked it
Read in March, 2011

Book 2 of The Inheritance Trilogy. it's only been a decade since the evens of The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, the creation of Yeine into the new Enefah, the release of Nahadoth and the godlings from their slavery, and the fall of Bright Itempas and the punishment for his crimes against his family.

This is the story of Oree, a blind Maroneh women living in the city of Shadow where the godlings are confined by the rule of Yeine and Nahadoth. Oree shares her life with mortals and godlings. Her magic manifests from her paintings and drawings, so the descriptiveness of this book is very lush. Oree can only see magic; when magic is nearby or being done, she is able to make out shapes and shades, details and textures. It winds up giving me mental pictures that are very lush and artistic, sometimes very bright, sometimes sketchy and with varying shades and depths. It was a very interesting way at looking at things and characters.

Oree's adventures lead her to a life caring for Itempas without knowing who he is, and teaches him what it is to be human and how to survive on his own. We get a bigger picture of what happened with the Gods' War and how Itempas could feel so betrayed to the point of starting the War, killing his sister/lover, and imprisoning his brother/lover and all their children for centuries. Together they take on a new religious cult, and through this trial learn that Oree is a demon, the offspring of gods and mortals and a bloodline that was thought ot have been wiped up centuries ago.

One of the things I like the most about these books is how close to Greek Mythology it seems. Itempas is most certainly a Zeus, Yeine/Enefah more like an amalgamation of Demeter/Athena/Artemis, and Nahadoth... him I am still pondering... he reminds me more of a god mixed with a Titan. And the godlings remind me of the 'monsters' that are the children of the gods (the ones not half mortal). The demons of course being the demigods.

This trilogy (the last book is set to be released this year) is so vast and epic in the old ways. They also remind me of tales such as Beowolf and Gilgamesh, so very rich and lush in mythology. Jemisin is a storyteller in the old sense of the word, she's a bard, and the world is so much better with her in it, writing. I've come to realize I want more than a trilogy, I want backstory to this world she has created and it's ancient and magical history.

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