Book Review: The Kingdom of the Gods by N.K. Jemisin

The final book in a series always seems to be the most difficult to review.  They tend to be a mixed bag of emotions. Happiness because the ending truly does the series justice, combined with the touch of sadness because it has come to end. Or disappointment, combined with a dash of anger if the less than stellar final book has tarnished the memory of earlier, better books. Kingdom of the Gods falls somewhere near the middle of this spectrum for me, but leans more towards the former. It has many of the same qualities I loved in the first two of the series, great writing and compelling characters, but it lacks some of the magic, especially when compared to The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms.

In Kingdom of the Gods we get a story from the perspective of the oldest godling Sieh, god of childhood and mischief. Without giving too much away, I can say that the plot revolves around Sieh befriending two mortal children. Two Arameri mortal children, descendants of those who kept him enslaved for centuries. This friendship ends up of having a ripple effect across both the god’s realm and the mortal world, as well as irrevocably changing Sieh.

Sieh was a favorite character of mine from the first book, so it was fun reading a story told from his perspective. Shahar and Deka, the aforementioned children, are interesting as the strong willed sister who vows to be a good ruler and the quiet, kind hearted brother who must learn to protect himself. Though they could have been developed a little further, especially Deka. These three provide the sexy undertones that we’ve come to expect after the first two novels of the series. The best part of this novel however, is the way it brings the series full circle. The mythology of the world is explored more deeply, and there is a recreation of several elements from the first two novels, which is a joy to see played out.

The plot does drag a bit more than the previous installments of the series and there are some bits towards the end that are slightly convoluted, but N.K. Jemisin’s writing is so lovely, and the world she has created so magnificent, that these faults can be easily overlooked. All in all, the final installment of The Inheritance Trilogy left me feeling quite satisfied. And I would certainly recommend the series as a whole to fantasy fans, lovers of great writing, and anyone who likes their stories a tad sexy.

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