This book. THIS BOOK. You know when something appears that’s so different and fresh that your mind soaks it up like a plant that’s been dry for far too long? Well, that happened to me because of this book. It’s refreshing because these days I kinda feel a numb to things, like everything has been done over and over again, but this was a book I could not put down and had to read as much as I could because I gave in and had to sleep.
So, I’ve needed a reading break. I’ve been reading a lot of academic papers, a lot of historic novels, a lot of thrillers, and while there is plenty of good stuff around, my mind has been asking for something different to read. Completely different. I love reading, but recently I’ve felt as though a lot of joy has gone out of it for me, I’ve found it hard to get into stories and I’ve not been that engaged with the ones I’ve picked up. So I picked up The Fifth Season by NK Jesimin. Oh boy.
The story is great and how it’s been written is brilliant. Set far in the future in a dystopian world, Earth’s lands have been smashed together into one giant land mass that is totally unpredictable in tectonic movement, having a huge affect on the people who live there. Over the years people have developed powers and physical forms in response to this uncertainty, and this generates fear from those still defined as human.
It’s told from the perspective of three woman at different stages of their lives and at different places on the land mass, all with their own hopes and dreams and wants and needs, and surrounded by chaos and people struggling to survive. Then the Fifth Season comes – a huge event that happens every few hundred years it seems and devastates the planet, causing near extinction of humans every single time. A few survive to carry on, bringing with them the stone-lore to continue the tales of the people who have come before them, share the stories of civilisations that remains can be found everywhere.
But there are people who can control the shifts in the landmass and these are hunted down and handed over to those who want them controlled and honed to do their bidding. And there are those primed to kill the ones who don’t do what they’re told.
It’s definitely worth reading the trilogy and the final ending is heart-breaking. Jesimin’s writing is great and she gives the reader lots to think about in terms of concepts, big and small, that are introduced naturally and flawlessly managed within her work.