Book Reviews

Review: The Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin

I knew I loved the Broken Earth trilogy. And then I began reading The Obelisk Gate and my heart expanded in size. I love the series even more now – the mother/daughter relationship from The Fifth Season is prominent here and I adore it.


The season of endings grows darker as civilization fades into the long cold night. Alabaster Tenring – madman, world-crusher, savior – has returned with a mission: to train his successor, Essun, and thus seal the fate of the Stillness forever.

It continues with a lost daughter, found by the enemy.

It continues with the obelisks, and an ancient mystery converging on answers at last.

The Stillness is the wall which stands against the flow of tradition, the spark of hope long buried under the thickening ashfall. And it will not be broken.


book review the obelisk gate by nk jemisin(Disclaimer: I received this free book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

It was absolutely lovey to be re-immersed in tho the Broken Earth world. It felt like coming home because I was able to be back in the world of magic and mystery. I am always stunned by Jemisin’s fantastic and deeply poignant words. The words are easy to say, to pronounce, to roll off your tongue, but they are difficult to feel. They slide through those cracks in your armor, seeking those tender spots.

I only love this trilogy more and more. So I’m expecting grand things for the third. And I know it will preform even better than I expect. There’s all these threads that I know will come together and I am writing this review in anticipation. Jemisin weaves us into this immersive and rich world. 

But where the book absolutely won me over was the mother/daughter dynamic here. For both of these wonderful women, their counter point is absent, but we are able to see their memories and cmplex feelings. Having spent the first book more with Essun, we can understand how she was shaped, fathered, and grew up. Learning about Nassun allows us to see how Essun demonstrates her love in a world that seeks to eradicate this relationship. My heart hurt and grew because of this relationship. I could see both of their perspectives – excellent job Jemisin – and my heart empathized with both. Ugh, please read this book so we can talk about it.

Even the side characters were unique and complex. Jemisin excels at it all – world building, characters, and themes that run through this book demanding to be heard. Can we get over our prejudices? Our hatred, our fear, and our guilt? Do we dare to hope for a new world? And finally, how do we love when it involves protecting the ones we love , even if it means hurting them?

Go check out The Obelisk Gate on Goodreads.


What is the last series that enthralled you?

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