Author: Fonda Lee
Age Range: 18+
Published: By Orbit Books on July 23rd, 2019
Content Warning: Gory violence, death, homophobia
Format I Read: Paperback
Note: I received a free finished copy of the book via Caffeine Book Tours and Orbit Books in exchange for an honest review
On the island of Kekon, the Kaul family is locked in a violent feud for control of the capital city and the supply of magical jade that endows trained Green Bone warriors with supernatural powers they alone have possessed for hundreds of years.
Beyond Kekon’s borders, war is brewing. Powerful foreign governments and mercenary criminal kingpins alike turn their eyes on the island nation. Jade, Kekon’s most prized resource, could make them rich – or give them the edge they’d need to topple their rivals.
Faced with threats on all sides, the Kaul family is forced to form new and dangerous alliances, confront enemies in the darkest streets and the tallest office towers, and put honor aside in order to do whatever it takes to ensure their own survival – and that of all the Green Bones of Kekon.
You can find my review of Jade City here. I started on this book as soon as I finished the first one and was apprehensive whether it would live up to the first book. I was also equal parts scared for my favourite characters and excited to see where Fonda would take the story.
I already had a few favourites from Jade City I was rooting for going into Jade War – Shae and Anden. I loved how their arcs progressed in this book and also started to care about some secondary and new characters such as Wen and Cory. All the characters were complex, realistic and superbly fleshed out and each of them brought out a range of strong emotions from me.
The story arc was a wonderful mixture of character-driven and plot-driven elements. Even though I prefer the former type because a balance is so hard for most authors to strike, Fonda managed it with ease. There was no sign of middle book syndrome. There was plenty of action juxtaposed with clever world-building that added to the solid foundation laid out in the first book. The magic system was also expanded upon with the introduction of new cultures and their relationship with jade played an important role in the narrative. Fonda’s skills as a storyteller showed a lot of improvement in every aspect of writing. Overall, Jade War was one of the best sequels and one of the best books I have ever had the pleasure of reading and Fonda Lee shot to the top 5 of my all-time favourite authors list.
I highly recommend anyone looking for an adult fantasy series to pick up the Green Bone Saga. For fans of Jade City, Jade War will not disappoint. For the music, I would recommend the soundtrack of The Godfather or Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy. As for the food, any East Asian dish of your choice would pair perfectly with it.
About the Author
Fonda Lee writes science fiction and fantasy for adults and teens. She is the author of the Green Bone Saga, beginning with Jade City (Orbit), which won the 2018 World Fantasy Award for Best Novel, was nominated for the Nebula Award and the Locus Award, and was named a Best Book of 2017 by NPR, Barnes & Noble, Syfy Wire, and others. The second book in the Green Bone Saga, Jade War, releases in the summer of 2019. Fonda’s young adult science fiction novels Zeroboxer (Flux), Exo and Cross Fire (Scholastic), have garnered numerous accolades including being named Junior Library Guild Selection, Andre Norton Award finalist, Oregon Book Award finalist, Oregon Spirit Book Award winner, and YALSA Top Ten Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers. In 2018, Fonda gained the distinction of winning the Aurora Award, Canada’s national science fiction and fantasy award, twice in the same year for Best Novel and Best Young Adult Novel.
Fonda wrote her first novel, about a dragon on a quest for a magic pendant, in fifth grade during the long bus ride to and from school each day. Many years later, she cast her high school classmates as characters in her second novel, a pulpy superhero saga co-written with a friend by passing a graphing calculator back and forth during biology class. Fortunately, both of these experiments are lost to the world forever.
Fonda is a former corporate strategist who has worked for or advised a number of Fortune 500 companies. She holds black belts in karate and kung fu, goes mad for smart action movies (think The Matrix, Inception, and Minority Report) and is an Eggs Benedict enthusiast. Born and raised in Calgary, Canada, she currently resides in Portland, Oregon.
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Have you read Jade City? Do you like urban fantasy books? Do you have more Asian-inspired fantasy you would like to recommend to me? Let’s discuss in the comments section below.