The Fifth Season is the first book in The Broken Earth Trilogy and it’s the kind of gripping story that swept me along before I had the foggiest idea what it was about.
Set in a dystopian future, The Fifth Season follows three protagonists, Essun, Damaya and Syenite, all members of a race of humans called orogenes with the ability to control seismic activity. Essun, who has been living in hiding, is searching for her husband after he murdered their son and kidnapped their daughter. Damaya is taken to an organisation known as Fulcrum to be trained in how to control her abilities and serve the human population, while Syenite is an ambitious and talented orogene sent on a mission by the Fulcrum, frustrated but resigned to the injustices and unfairness of the world she lives in.
Each perspective is unique and intriguing, and how the characters intersect with one another adds another level of mystery and suspense. When the characters and timelines finally coalesce at the end, it sets the scene for the next part of the trilogy which I’m looking forward to reading.
The world building is brilliant, though the brutal dehumanisation, exploitation and subjugation of the orogenes is uncomfortable reading in places, and I wasn’t suprised to learn that it was inspired by the real history of slavery and the oppression of black people. The Fifth Season is a thought-provoking, absorbing and original read. Have a lovely week. X