RaveThe Washington PostThe kind of book you lose an entire day to, hour after hour going by unnoticed, and emerge shaken and dazzled on the other end. The writing is clear and visceral and intense. It’s some of the most brilliant, unapologetic speculative fantasy I’ve read in years ... It\'s a powerful and hopeful story ... The novel approaches viciously bigoted beliefs head-on. Jemisin writes about prejudices such as racism, transphobia, homophobia and xenophobia because they are an inescapable part of the current world — and yet this story balances the only-too-real hate with genuine kindness ... A satisfying ending to Jemisin’s Great Cities duology.
RaveThe Washington PostThe Cartographers is, at its heart, about three things: family, found and otherwise; how much of one’s life can be built and balanced on a single lie; and the transformative nature of cartography. Its examination of this last aspect is what takes the book from an enjoyable, fast-paced (and fantastical) thriller to something you want to put down and think about before rereading it — snarling viciously at anyone who tries to pick it up before you can get that second pass. It’s brilliant ... One of the triumphs of The Cartographers is the exploration of what it means to make a map ... explores these questions with deep, vivid intensity; it will make you think twice about the power of paper maps, especially in a world where they’ve been supplanted by electronic devices ... Shepherd nails the sense of deep-seated, profound connection and love between a small group of people drawn together by shared experience and interest, creating an intense familial bond ... both beautiful and intellectual, and Shepherd sticks the landing in a deeply satisfying fashion.