Jade City by Fonda Lee
On an island nation where jade (the stone) gives magical powers to those sensitive to it, clans fight for territory, honor, and jade. Lan inherits the position of Pillar (Leader-man of his clan) from an ailing grandfather who has dementia and doesn’t want to let go. He’s supported by his brother Hilo, who is his Horn (Lead fighty-man for the clan) and a hot-head. His sister Shae comes back after time spent abroad (which was not looked on favorably by the family) and refuses to get involved in the clan and wear her jade. Lan struggles to earn respect in his position, and then he finds out his Weather Man (Business-man for the clan) may be conversing with an enemy clan.
Why I picked up this book:
Truthfully? I saw enough ads for it. And I read this which got me involved in the story around the book as well.
What I knew going in:
Asian style story involving family, honor, and magic. Which, let’s be honest, is all on the front cover.
Overall a good read, though nothing mind blowing. I gave it three stars. It has a steep learning curve (ie: There is a *lot* of vocabulary to learn.) and it took a while to get used to that, added to the fact that people can be referred to by first or last name. It has all the feel of a culture where family is *everything* and honor fills in whatever gaps are left.
I stopped to think about my favorite character in Jade City and in my mind I said: “Well I love Anden, and Lan, oh and Shae, and I really like Hilo …isn’t that like, all the main characters?”
As per usual, I love seeing strong relationships between characters and them being loyal to each other. There were enough un-reasonable people around to keep things interesting, but even the “bad guys” aren’t just bad. They’re all real characters and have legit motivations for what they’re doing, which I appreciate.
Will I pick up the next book:
I’m not waiting on bated breath, but I will if I see it.