Broken Kingdoms, Hidden Exposition

This is the sequel to N.K. Jemisin’s debut novel ‘A Hundred Thousand Kingdoms’(1). As in that novel Jemisin displays an uncanny ability to drop in exposition into the narrative in such a subtle way that often one is not aware it’s being dropped at all.

Jemisin often does this by giving her exposition an emotional charge; linking it to her main character’s childhood or a bereavement. Often she teases you by giving you flashes of information that intrigue or ramp up the suspense so that when the exposition arrives it reads more like show than tell.

It seems that nowhere in the georgeous panopoly of the hundred thousand kingdoms does there dwell a man called Bob. Or if he does live there nobody thinks it worth their while to tell him things that he already knows.

I strongly recomend this book series to anyone who hasn’t read it N.K. Jemisin’s website can be found here.

(1) I don’t do reviews for a number of reasons but I do like to single out aspects of certain books I like if I think they’re particularly good examples of craft skills.

About Paul Graham Raven

Science fiction, foresight, (post)humanities, infrastructure futures research. Guitarist, scruffy mountebank. Opinions mine, not my employer's. Velcro City ·
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