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Unique and powerful - Jade City is a fantastic read
November 2, 2017
Jade City by Fonda Lee Orbit Books Orbit Sci Fi & Fantasy Pub Date 07 Nov 2017
Jade City is perfect for fans of Game of Thrones and others who enjoy intense politically complex fantasy. Set in an area much like early 20th century Asia, Kekon is an island nation divided between families of power. Green Bone warriors wield jade in service of the patriarchs, the bioactive stones enhancing physical and psychic capabilities. The more jade you can wield, the higher your position. Kekon maintains an uneasy balance of power, but jade and the capacity to wield it is envied by other countries as well as by commoners who see it as a path to wealth and prestige. Shine, a drug designed by foreign powers, allows the untrained to wield jade upsetting the delicate balance and leading to war between the Kaul and the Ayt.
Part gangster drama, part action fantasy Jade City is a unique and unforgettable epic. The story starts slowly, and is incredibly complicated. It takes time to get to know the characters and the situation. In my view it's time well spent. Other novels may have more flash, but Jade City has what it takes to be remembered long after most are forgotten.
4 / 5
I received a copy of Jade City from the publisher and Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.
"Stylish and action-packed, full of ambitious families and guilt-ridden loves, Jade City is an epic drama reminiscent of the best classic Hong Kong gangster films but takes place in a fantasy metropolis so gritty and well-imagined that you'll forget you're reading a book." -- Ken Liu, winner of the Hugo, Nebula, and World Fantasy Awards and author of The Grace of Kings and The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories
FAMILY IS DUTY. MAGIC IS POWER. HONOR IS EVERYTHING.
Jade is the lifeblood of the island of Kekon. It has been mined, traded, stolen, and killed for -- and for centuries, honorable Green Bone warriors like the Kaul family have used it to enhance their magical abilities and defend the island from foreign invasion.
Now, the war is over and a new generation of Kauls vies for control of Kekon's bustling capital city. They care about nothing but protecting their own, cornering the jade market, and defending the districts under their protection. Ancient tradition has little place in this rapidly changing nation.
When a powerful new drug emerges that lets anyone -- even foreigners -- wield jade, the simmering tension between the Kauls and the rival Ayt family erupts into open violence. The outcome of this clan war will determine the fate of all Green Bones -- from their grandest patriarch to the lowliest motorcycle runner on the streets -- and of Kekon itself.
JADE CITY begins an epic tale of family, honor, and those who live and die by the ancient laws of jade and blood.