I'm not going to lie, it's a bit complicated. It takes its sweet time revealing bits and pieces of itself to the reader. The magic isn't always intuitive, the characters' motivations aren't always laid out nicely and neatly. But it's always fascinating and keeps me asking questions.
It's not a series I would recommend for those of us without patience.
It's unique second person point of view is, again, one of the best uses of this perspective I have ever seen. It gives you a profound sense of revelation to experience the journey this way.
This narrative choice is only complimented by Jemisin's writing style. While reading this series I felt completely rapt, transported directly into this cruel and dying world. It's a startling and enchanting experience.
Can I also just say how much I love the diversity in this series. There is so much here that it's difficult to even list it all! Diversity is severely lacking in High Fantasy and Science Fiction, and it's just so refreshing to see so much representation.
If I ever hear someone say "But it's hard for me to include diversity in my novel!" then I will absolutely point them in the direction of this series because the inclusivity is flawless.
I really only had two noteworthy issues with this installment:
1. I feel as though the The Fifth Season is more compelling for a specific reason. There was a very distinctive aspect of the storytelling that, because of events from the first novel, could not be present in The Obelisk Gate.
This aspect is one of the reasons I adore The Fifth Season so much, and while Jemisin works incredibly well with where she took her story, it's difficult not to make comparisons.
2. This book feels like a middle book. It's great, but not as great as its predecessor. It's packed with more information and less action than the first, but I get the feeling it needed to be that way in order to set up events that will take place in The Stone Sky.
Despite these minor issues, I was still incredibly engaged in this story & I'm honestly devastated thinking about waiting until August to see it through. This series is unlike other fantasy series that I have read in the past, and I'm so thrilled to see how it concludes!