All is not well in the city that never sleeps. Even though the avatars of New York City have temporarily managed to stop the Woman in White from invading—and destroying the entire universe in the process—the mysterious capital "E" Enemy has more subtle powers at her disposal. A new candidate for mayor wielding the populist rhetoric of gentrification, xenophobia, and "law and order" may have what it takes to change the very nature of New York itself and take it down from the inside.
The 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.
Each chapter centers a different character, but Neek’s chapters are the only ones in first person ... This tonal change allows the reader more access to the character, allowing us to know Neek in a way he won’t allow the others to know him. In a way, this second novel is all about deepening our understanding of these characters, who they are, who their boroughs are ... Jemisin, in this book as much as the first, lays bare the racism, sexism, inequities and unfairness of our world, but also uplifts so many cultures and communities. For many passages, you’re either nodding knowingly or learning something new ... Jemisin molds real world events from the past few years with magic and myth into this fantastical page-turner.
... powerful, eminently satisfying ... Whether or not you read speculative fiction or fantasy, Jemisin's Great Cities duology is well worth exploring. Her writing is lively, brash and frequently very funny, and the way she writes about New York City is nothing short of marvelous. Her avatar characters are both entirely human --- flawed, messy, vulnerable and emotional --- and powerful in inventive and magnificent ways ... Like much great speculative fiction, the book offers both overt and oblique commentary on social and political issues (including some that were factors in the recent midterm elections) in ways that prompt readers to consider those concerns through a different lens. Although in some ways I'm still mourning the fact that there won't be a third Great Cities novel to anticipate, The World We Make is a thoroughly satisfactory conclusion. It impeccably rounds out the narrative while still keeping this reader excited to discover whatever Jemisin will dream up next.