The Fifth Season

The Fifth Season

Paperback - 2015
Average Rating:
Rate this:
In a post-apocalyptic world plagued by natural diasters, Essun lives in a small comunity barricaded against the outside world. When her husband relizes that she and her children are orogenes with the ability to manipulate seismic energy, he kills their son and kidnaps their daughter. Against the backdrop of the end of the world, Essun follows, beginning an odyssey which will not end until her daughter is safe.
Publisher: New York, NY : Orbit, 2015.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780316229296
Characteristics: 498 pages : map ; 21 cm.
Alternative Title: 5th season


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

DBRL_LaurenW Nov 30, 2017

Exceptional world-building. Or, end-of-the-world building. The themes of oppression and social justice feel keenly relevant and the narrative structure is surprising and compelling. I'm not a huge reader of genre fiction, but I enjoyed this immensely and read it in a weekend.

Sep 14, 2017

This. Is. Epic.

May 17, 2017

I would give this book 4 stars for the solid writing, great characters and the super interesting world that Jemison has created. It is a unique and fresh approach to the genre. My only complaint is that there was very little resolve to anything at the end of the book. This is to be expected somewhat considering this is the first of a series but I always feel there should be some sort of temporary conclusion to each individual book in a series. This one leaves you hanging off the edge of a cliff. Not a big deal if you plan to read all the books back to back. This is definitely an author to try if you enjoy fantasy.

AL_ALYSONC Apr 08, 2017

What an imagination this author has! I loved the world building but had to rely heavily on the maps, character list and glossary to keep track of it all. I will be moving on the next book in the series.

JCLCourtneyS Mar 10, 2017

I can understand why some people love this book. The world Jemisin builds is lovely and rich, and her writing is pretty (though I had trouble getting through it at first). When I got to the end of this rather lengthy book, I felt that a lot more of the book's many storylines should have seen some resolution. It's really more of a lengthy prologue in feeling, and my own plot-driven reading tastes were not satisfied by that.

Dec 25, 2016

"His father has beaten him to death here." That, on page 10, was about Uche, a three-year-old. I bailed at that point.

Nov 04, 2016

I recommend borrowing The Fifth Season and its successor, The Obelisk Gate, at the same time -- you won't be able to put this one down, and as soon as you're done, you'll be glad that the next book is within easy reach!

Come for N.K. Jemisin's incredible universe-building; stay for the nuanced emotional themes and fun geological intrigue. Post-apocalyptic worlds are old hat in the sci-fi genre, but trust me... you haven't read anything like The Broken Earth series.

One thing I appreciate most about The Fifth Season is how intensely Jemisin describes the inner worlds of those who endure social oppression & power. The narrative dives deep into the hearts and lives of three characters, who belong to a persecuted group called 'orogenes'. Their struggles for survival and agency are painful, but important to witness -- many readers will recognize parallels between anti-orogene dynamics and present-day realities of racism, transphobia, and ableism.

The dedication ("For all those who have to fight for the respect that everyone else is given without question") says it all. Folks who care about environmental justice, racial justice, and other liberation movements will appreciate how lovingly Jemisin portrays her characters -- their complexity, dignity, and humanity.

Don't skip this one! Black women sci-fi writers, forever and ever!

AL_SUMMER Sep 15, 2016

Recent Hugo Award winner N.K. Jemisin introduces a dark but beautiful world torn apart by rifts and quakes in the first book of her Broken Earth series. Tossed into the turmoil, I found myself desperately turning the pages to discover the fates of the characters. Be prepared to pick up the next in the series, The Obelisk Gate.

Aug 07, 2016

This was a fun read- combining science, geology, future societies & a many times over post apocalyptic world narrated by the main character. Any book that can feature orogenesis is pretty gneiss in my opinion.

This book is surprisingly good. I was concerned at first about the third person perspective and had my doubts. I think the writing kept me going. The writing is well done and deserves props. I was having a hard time figuring out the concept and what was happening in the beginning of the book, but not because it isn't written well, but because the story itself is something completely different from all fantasy or sic-fi that I have ever read. I loved that part the most, it was super intriguing. I don't want to give any spoilers, so I am not going to mention the story line or the characters or how it was done, I am glad it wasn't spoiled for me. I really enjoyed the way the story was laid out and how it was presented and all my doubts were quenched about 1/4 to halfway though the book. This book is well worth the read and I do recommend it to any fantasy reader. The one thing I did enjoy is the character development, and I usually forget to mention how I can't stand stupid romance in books, which for some reason they all have, but the good thing about this novel is that the romance isn't the guiding light behind the story, the characters are though. Great book!! Refreshingly different!

View All Comments


Add Age Suitability

Jun 09, 2016

DragonRhapsody thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Subject Headings


Find it at CPL

To Top