- Publisher: Little, Brown & Company
- Format: Paperback | 425 pages
- Dimensions: 102mm x 170mm x 33mm | 204g
- Publication date: 1 October 2010
- Publication City/Country: New York
- ISBN 10: 0316043923
- ISBN 13: 9780316043922
- Edition statement: Reissue
- Sales rank: 10,189
Yeine Darr is an outcast from the barbarian north. But when her mother dies under mysterious circumstances, she is summoned to the majestic city of Sky. There, to her shock, Yeine is named an heiress to the king. But the throne of the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is not easily won, and Yeine is thrust into a vicious power struggle. "The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms "is the debut novel from a major new voice in fantasy fiction.
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N. K. Jemisin is a Brooklyn author whose short fiction and novels have been multiply nominated for the Hugo, the World Fantasy Award, and the Nebula, shortlisted for the Crawford and the Tiptree, and have won the Locus Award. Her website is nkjemisin.com.
By Lydia Presley 26 Feb 2011
Were it not for the Nebula Awards, I would not have picked up this book and I would have missed out - big time. I'm a fantasy and science fiction lover, but not since discovering the Mistborn trilogy have I been sucked into a world so thoroughly and completely. This is just Book 1 of the trilogy but it was an entire epic experience, all on its own.
I don't even know where to begin without just.. gushing praise left and right, because that's what this book deserves. Ms. Jamisin, thank goodness for authors like you! This book contained such brilliant arcs of storytelling that there is absolutely no need for a cliffhanger at the end to have me grabbing for the next book in line. I simply need to read more. That is a sign of great storytelling.
The world in The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is fantastically made. Descriptions given by Yeine throughout the story (which are not a digression) provide pictures through example of how the strange Kingdom of Sky is crafted and how the lands are laid out around it. The authority structure, on its surface, seems simple, but then as the story unfolds it just gains more intricate layers until, by the end of the novel, you are surrounded by so much information, so much color, that it's amazing to realize that you can grasp it all, understand it and still feel overwhelmed by it all at the same time.
And then there's Yeine Darr. There was not a single thing I found lacking in her. She carried strength, humanity and so much more. She deals with conflicts, makes imperfect decisions and does everything that endears herself to those reading her. I felt by the end of this book as if she were a close friend and found myself cheering her on while simultaneously wishing I could enfold her in a huge hug.
I knew reading the Nebula nominees this year would be a blast of fun but I had no idea it was going to be like this. All I have to say is (as this is the first I've read thus far), this book sets the bar incredibly high. Ms. Jamisin is a force to be reckoned with.
By Roxane 04 Jul 2010
I wish this book had been written back while I was in university writing my master's dissertation. It really would have added to the discussion on identity issues with regards to gender, race and sexuality, and would have fit perfectly alongside Octavia E. Butler's Wild Seed and Nalo Hopkinson's The Salt Roads (which were the two books around which I constructed my study). N.K. Jemisin's debut novel really made me want to go back to university and pursue a thesis. This book is so rich, complex, beautifully written, at times fast-paced, at others introspective and touching, sexy. The world-building is excellent and the characters exquisitely rendered. This is exactly the book I wanted to read! It pushed all the right buttons.
I've always had a soft spot for books (genre or otherwise) that dealt with questions of identity, probably because these are the questions I struggle with on daily basis. And I do mean identity in a very general sense: sexual and/or racial representation, fragmented identity based on context, notions of minority and majority, normalcy, dominating and dominated. All these are very flexible notions depending on history (personal or History), context, interactions, etc. And this is what I enjoyed above all in THTK, everything is flexible, ever-changing and the character which most embodies this is Nahadoth, God of all that is extreme, dark and passionate. His apparance constantly changes to please and seduce all those around him. It's a fascinating concept really.
There is also much to say on the main character. Yeine (pronounced "YAY-neh") is one of a kind and is really up to the task of carrying this remarkable, multi-layered narration. The reader aches and easily relates to her as we discover her struggling between her upbringing (she was raised in a matriarchal society, I wish we'd learned more about that in the book, it is sooo cool!), her royal inheritance and a little something else which I won't go into lest I spoil you all of this wonderful plot twist. Little more than a pawn in the eyes of most of her royal peers, she will manage to turn things around and make with all that she is, bring all the pieces together but not into some nicely homogeneous whole.
It's a truly brilliant book and so much needs to be said about it. I am, of course, eagerly awaiting book 2, The Broken Kingdoms, which comes out this November. In the meantime, I can already tell you that THTK easily ranks among my favorite reads of 2010 (and my favorite reads period).
I can't recommend this book enough, it grabbed me and didn't let me go until long after I'd finished and set it down.