A review by drsdon
The Stone Sky, by N.K. Jemisin


The final book in Jemisin's Broken Earth trilogy answers all the questions from the first two books - how the Earth got "broken" in the first place being the primary one. I think the pacing of this book felt faster than the prior two, as there was less world building and more tightening and wrapping up the plot (that said, there was still additional world building and history that Jemisin wove very well into the story). Perhaps because of the faster plot, or simply because all the characters have been so deeply explored in the prior two books, this book didn't feel quite a deep.

All three books examined relationships - within society primarily. This one continues that theme, providing more historical context for how those that are different are so often ostracized; how those that have become conquered and often depicted in inhumane ways long after any "threat" they might actually pose. Its hard to read these particular sections and not see the parallels in our own world history. Knowing such, the book offers a commentary on human nature that is worthy of reflection.

Another point of reflection is the relationship between parent and child - how the scars each experience, together and separately, impact the relationship. This is particularly evident in this third book, as the building tension between Essun and her daughter Nassun pushes the novel towards its end.

I've enjoyed reading the series and this book. I don't read a ton of speculative fiction - be it fantasy fiction, science fiction, or whatever, but I have enjoyed my forays into the genre.