The Broken Earth Trilogy by N.K. Jemisin

The “Broken Earth” trilogy, masterfully penned by N.K. Jemisin, is a groundbreaking science fiction series that spans three books, published between 2015 and 2017.

Set on a supercontinent called the Stillness, which frequently experiences catastrophic climate events known as “Fifth Seasons,” the narrative follows multiple characters, primarily Essun, as they navigate a world where orogeny – the ability to manipulate thermal and kinetic energy – is both a gift and a curse.

The series is lauded for its intricate world-building, complex characters, and its exploration of themes such as systemic oppression, environmental collapse, and the resilience of humanity.

AuthorN.K. Jemisin
GenreScience Fiction/Fantasy
Number of Books3
Publication Years2015 – 2017

Main Characters

  • Essun: A skilled orogene who embarks on a quest to find her daughter after her son is killed and her community is destroyed.
  • Nassun: Essun’s daughter, who grapples with her own orogenic abilities and the world’s prejudices.
  • Alabaster: A powerful orogene who plays a pivotal role in revealing the truths of the Stillness.
  • Syenite: A young orogene paired with Alabaster to produce a child with strong orogenic abilities.

Themes and Motif

  • Oppression and Prejudice: The series delves deep into the systemic discrimination faced by orogenes and the ways in which societies justify and perpetuate such oppressions.
  • Environmental Collapse: The recurring Fifth Seasons serve as a backdrop for exploring humanity’s relationship with the environment and the consequences of taking it for granted.
  • Resilience and Survival: Characters constantly grapple with the challenges of surviving in a volatile world, both physically and emotionally.

The Broken Earth Trilogy in Order

S No.Book’s NameYear of PublicationBook’s Price
1The Fifth Season2015Check Price
2The Obelisk Gate2016Check Price
3The Stone Sky2017Check Price


  • Critical Reception: The “Broken Earth” trilogy has been widely acclaimed, with each book winning the Hugo Award for Best Novel in their respective years – a historic achievement.
  • Reader Reception: Readers have praised the series for its innovative narrative structure, compelling characters, and its poignant exploration of societal issues.
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Trivia and Fun Facts

  • N.K. Jemisin is the first author to win the Hugo Award for Best Novel three years in a row, and she achieved this with the “Broken Earth” trilogy.
  • The series is notable for its unique second-person narrative, which adds depth and intimacy to the storytelling.
  • Jemisin has mentioned in interviews that the series, while set in a fantastical world, draws inspiration from real-world issues, particularly regarding climate change and systemic discrimination.

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