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In Jade War, the sequel to the World Fantasy Award-winning novel Jade City, the Kaul siblings battle rival clans for honor and control over an Asia-inspired fantasy metropolis. 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 th In Jade War, the sequel to the World Fantasy Award-winning novel Jade City, the Kaul siblings battle rival clans for honor and control over an Asia-inspired fantasy metropolis. 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. Jade War is the second book of the Green Bone Saga, an epic trilogy about family, honor, and those who live and die by the ancient laws of blood and jade.


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In Jade War, the sequel to the World Fantasy Award-winning novel Jade City, the Kaul siblings battle rival clans for honor and control over an Asia-inspired fantasy metropolis. 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 th In Jade War, the sequel to the World Fantasy Award-winning novel Jade City, the Kaul siblings battle rival clans for honor and control over an Asia-inspired fantasy metropolis. 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. Jade War is the second book of the Green Bone Saga, an epic trilogy about family, honor, and those who live and die by the ancient laws of blood and jade.

30 review for Jade War

  1. 5 out of 5

    Petrik

    I have a Booktube channel now! Subscribe here: https://www.youtube.com/petrikleo ARC provided by the publisher—Orbit—in exchange for an honest review. Absolutely amazing; Jade War was a brilliantly compelling sequel filled with skillfully-written characterizations and tension-packed action scenes. I buddy read this novel with four other readers of different ethnicities—TS, Emma, Jenia, and Nils—living in different parts of the world and all of us pretty much agreed that we were both in love with a I have a Booktube channel now! Subscribe here: https://www.youtube.com/petrikleo ARC provided by the publisher—Orbit—in exchange for an honest review. Absolutely amazing; Jade War was a brilliantly compelling sequel filled with skillfully-written characterizations and tension-packed action scenes. I buddy read this novel with four other readers of different ethnicities—TS, Emma, Jenia, and Nils—living in different parts of the world and all of us pretty much agreed that we were both in love with and terrified by the events in Jade War. I find it equally satisfying and astonishing that Lee was able to create a sequel that outshone the stunning quality found in Jade City, which won many readers’ hearts and the World Fantasy Award trophy last year. But Fonda Lee did it spectacularly; Jade War was unbelievably better than the first book. The fantasy genre needs more urban fantasy as refreshing and great as this series. The story in Jade War takes place sixteen months after the end of Jade City. The official blurb on Goodreads and Amazon did a wonderful job of explaining the premise without spoiling any of the main events; read those if you want to know more about the general plot. Jade War took every factor of importance firmly established in the first book into account and expanded upon them deftly. Jade City took a bit of time—around 100 pages—for me to become comfortable and attached; Jade War flowed naturally with no dull moments from the first page until the last. All scene was necessary and crucial, and the plot points that I loved from the first book—such as a deadly clan war, engaging dialogues, and now, international politics too—not only existed but were improved further. Jade War also follows in the footsteps of the first book by making sure that the main themes of love, family, honor, and duty were evident in the narrative. Fiercer, more ambitious, and bigger in scope; the events that occurred in the first book subtly enhanced the looming tension hanging around behind the shadows of the characters. Lee gradually and continuously escalates the stakes that the characters encounter and the last 150 pages of the book comprised an unputdownable finale that can frankly be described as every single shit hitting the tornado. “People are born selfish; babies are the most selfish creatures, even though they’re helpless and wouldn’t survive a day on their own. Growing up and losing that selfishness—that’s what civilization is, that’s what sets us above beasts. If someone harms my brother, they harm me—that’s what our clan oaths are about. Those men weren’t your enemies—they were our enemies.” I don’t know why, but recently I’ve been having quite a bad luck in reading SFF books; it seems that majority of them have awesome actions and original world-building but lack the one feature that matters the most to me: stupendous characterizations. I’ve written more than 300 reviews and I’ve repeated this so many times already, but I simply can’t enjoy a book if I don’t care about the characters. Fortunately, Lee is the type of storyteller that prioritizes her characters and characterizations. I felt truly invested in the characters’ journeys. It was crystal clear that Lee understands and knows her characters really well. Let’s take Hilo for example. Being in his position, it was inevitable that he would have to do some bad stuff and my god he did. Even then, I was still able to understand why he did these things, and the good side of him that genuinely cares about his family compelled me to care about him. “The clan was not just people and jade and money. It was an idea, a legacy that connected the pats with the present and the future. The family’s strength was a promise.” Every character’s actions always had weight and comprehensible motivation behind them. Lee has created an exceptionally well-written cast of characters that’s so bloody compelling, complex, tangibly realistic, and easy to get attached to. There wasn’t a single moment where the characters felt like they behaved outside of their personalities, and the internal conflicts they had were all valid and empathizing. These are the kind of things that, in my opinion, separate the good and the great SFF authors from each other and Lee definitely belongs in the latter group. I also need to mention that within the cast of characters, the female characters—Shae and Wen—of this series were hands down some of the best female characters I’ve ever read in fantasy. “If you’re not sure you’re in love, then you’re not.” This doesn’t mean that I’m saying that Jade War was only good in characterizations but lacking in tremendous actions and intricate world-building. On the contrary, the existence of the characters and the terrific characterizations served to improve the sense of danger and immersion behind the battles and the fully-realized world-building. Jade War doesn’t take place solely in Kekkon; one look at the maps in this book and you will immediately realize that this is a much larger and ambitious sequel compared to its predecessor. The inclusion of Shotar and Espenia, to name a few, made the series more complex and yet still easily accessible. “Out of small resentments, spring great wars.” Lee once again astounded me with her fantastic blend of martial arts and jade magic. The clan wars provoked by each faction led to ignitions of violence that’s doubly gripping and memorable. The action sequences were utterly stylish and breathtaking. I have to give a round of applause to the duel featured in this installment; it was pulse-pounding, full of energy, menace, and ominous atmosphere. The crescent slash left by the clean moon blades detonated a frightening quality that quickened the beating of my heart. I mean it, the duel scene exhibited in this installment and the climax sequences were brimming with vivid imagery and perceptible intensity. Take the last battle in Jade City, increase that threefold and you have a notion of the crushing strength poured into the global jade war. I honestly can’t wait to read how Lee will improve from her cinematic set pieces in the next—and maybe the last—installment of the series. “All that mortals could do was accept the lot they were given, and yet still fight to better their own fate and that of their loved ones.” I’m gratified and impressed by the gangster fantasy I’ve read this year; Priest of Lies by Peter McLean is included in one of my favorite reads of the year so far and now Jade War joins the list. Jade War is urban fantasy at its best and Lee has cemented The Green Bone Saga as one of my favorite ongoing series with a groundbreaking impact. Do not miss reading this incredible book at all costs; The No Peak Clan awaits your enlistment in the Jade War. If you haven’t read Jade City yet, what are you waiting for? On my honor, my life, and my jade, this is a magnificent example of urban fantasy of the highest tier. The clan is my blood, and the Pillar is its master; let the gods recognize me as a clan loyalist who has stamped Jade War as one of the best book published in 2019. Official release date: July 25th, 2019 (UK) and July 23rd, 2019 (US) You can pre-order the book from: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Book Depository (Free shipping) The quotes in this review were taken from an ARC and are subject to change upon publication. You can find this and the rest of my reviews at Novel Notions Special thanks to my Patrons on Patreon for giving me extra support towards my passion for reading and reviewing! My Patrons: Alfred, Alya, Annabeth, Ben, Blaise, Devin, Diana, Edward, Hamad, Helen, Jimmy Nutts, Joie, Lufi, Mike, Miracle, Nicholas, Zoe.

  2. 4 out of 5

    chai ♡

    I thought books were for enjoyment, not emotional trauma

  3. 4 out of 5

    Joel Rochester

    FONDA LEE, YOU DO NOT GET TO PLAY WITH MY FEELINGS RIGHT AT THE END LIKE THAT but wow, you really did that, huh

  4. 4 out of 5

    Marzuqa

    600 pages of being blown away by this breathtaking installment in a phenomenal series. This was everything I hoped it to be and more. Fonda Lee is such an incredible story writer. The plot building and story line were so intelligent and enthralling. It’s no lighthearted read though, it’ll play with your heart and might leave you in shambles. This was definitely more political than book 1. Power struggle continues between two rival clans over control of magical jade. But this time, there’re threat 600 pages of being blown away by this breathtaking installment in a phenomenal series. This was everything I hoped it to be and more. Fonda Lee is such an incredible story writer. The plot building and story line were so intelligent and enthralling. It’s no lighthearted read though, it’ll play with your heart and might leave you in shambles. This was definitely more political than book 1. Power struggle continues between two rival clans over control of magical jade. But this time, there’re threats from external countries and war is brewing beyond borders. It all boils down to survival. Violent feuds and combat are abundant, but we also see the various characters and their relationships mature amazingly in this book. I loved how this was totally unpredictable too. Readers who enjoyed Jade City can be sure to be thoroughly entertained by this sequel. I would recommend this series over others anytime.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Emma

    Sixteen months have passed since the violent and tragic events of Jade City and the No Peak Clan are far from safe. But it’s not just the Clans at war. The outside world wants in. Jade is a commodity right at the top of everybody’s list and they’re willing to pay for it, in bundles of cash or oceans of blood. Trying to prevent foreign governments, criminal gangs, smugglers, street thugs and everyone in between from taking what doesn’t belong to them makes for interesting alliances, underhand pol Sixteen months have passed since the violent and tragic events of Jade City and the No Peak Clan are far from safe. But it’s not just the Clans at war. The outside world wants in. Jade is a commodity right at the top of everybody’s list and they’re willing to pay for it, in bundles of cash or oceans of blood. Trying to prevent foreign governments, criminal gangs, smugglers, street thugs and everyone in between from taking what doesn’t belong to them makes for interesting alliances, underhand politics, and more than a little bloodshed. No Peak can’t do it alone, but there’s only one other Clan who can help… And it doesn’t take years of Green Bone training to work out that inviting a snake like Ayt Mada in to your home means that you’re going to get bit. There are hard choices to be made. But the Kaul family will do what they must to protect each other, their jade, and their Clan. The stakes are nothing short of their lives. It’s no understatement to say that Fonda Lee has improved on the first book in every way. While this is most evident in the characterisations, it applies equally to the world-building and plot. Everything is more vibrant, better realised. This feels like a whole new world. Accordingly, while Jade City offered some notion of what was outside of Kekon, this time the stage is truly international. And just like it says in the title, this is a WAR. One that will determine not only the future of the Clans, but Kekon and its place in the world heirarchy. It’s all about power and the deadly games people play to get it, or keep hold of it. The knives are out and nobody is safe. Yet what gives this book an extra something is that it doesn’t lose sight of how all this political and military bargaining affects real people. From the plight of refugees created by proxy wars and used as bargain chips, to the trickle down persecution of Kekonese immigrants in Espenia, this is real life recreated. Proof, if needed, that Fonda Lee knows not only her world, but ours. Her characters show that in spades. Whatever you might want them to be, they are nothing more or less than themselves. Love them or loathe them, the author always gives us enough to understand them. To the eternal dismay of my buddy readers, I still don’t like Hilo. But I get him. And I can see how skilfully the author creates a reader's emotional investment in my own reaction to Anden, who I genuinely adore. The exploration of his sexuality, of what it means to be himself within his family, or as part of a Kekonese community in Janloon or Espenia is so relatable, so perfectly done that it actually made me somewhat aggrieved when I had to read other POVs. His role as something of an oppositional or questioning force allows a multifaceted exploration of the morality of the ideas and actions of the Kaul family and the Green Bone way of life. It rips away the glamour to reveal what’s hidden beneath- the suffering and loss and scrabbling in the dirt as life bleeds away… For me, these improvements created something which I hardly felt in the first book: genuine tension. The last 20-30% of Jade War is all out, full-on, page turning fun. It’s made of bold choices, danger, and death. There’s blood and magic, surprises and satisfaction. Best of all, there are more than a few scenes that make you hold your breath, moments that could change the game for some of the players. Or end it. And if that’s not enough, there’s Bero. Ah, Bero. An annoyingly lucky character, and an increasing favourite, is turning into something close to comedy gold. He’s a nobody, a failure, a mistake, but he’s always right there at the turning points of the story. Even if Anden wins my favourite character award, it’s Bero who raises a smile as I wonder what trouble he’s going to get himself into next. I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if he ends up the Pillar of the reunited Clans…. Who the hell knows?? Whatever happens, we know he’ll do it badly and with a serious attitude to boot. I can’t wait. At its heart Jade War is about the choices people make. It’s about personal morality and what happens when that clashes with the bonds of family and loyalty, it’s about acting under pressure and doing what needs to be done, it’s about trying to find the ‘right’ way forward even knowing there will be consequences. And trust me, there are. ARC via Netgalley

  6. 5 out of 5

    James Tivendale

    I received a review copy of Jade War in exchange for an honest review. I would like to thank Fonda Lee and Orbit Books for the opportunity. Jade War continues the brilliantly addictive and engaging oriental urban fantasy gangster narrative that started with Jade City. The novel is a mixture of the finest elements seen in crime cinema such as the family loyalty and honour from Copolla’s The Godfather and the political unrest and uncomfortable moments of To’s Election series. Intertwine that with s I received a review copy of Jade War in exchange for an honest review. I would like to thank Fonda Lee and Orbit Books for the opportunity. Jade War continues the brilliantly addictive and engaging oriental urban fantasy gangster narrative that started with Jade City. The novel is a mixture of the finest elements seen in crime cinema such as the family loyalty and honour from Copolla’s The Godfather and the political unrest and uncomfortable moments of To’s Election series. Intertwine that with some John Woo inspired bullet ballet and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon-esque wire-fu and readers are in for an incredible experience. “The men begged for their captors to kill them, but the Jo Sun clan handed the criminals over to No Peak as a sign of allegiance and good will to the Kaul family. They were not alone in their thinking; the other minor Green Bone Clans, the Janloon city police, and even the Mountain clan assisted or got out of the way – there was nothing to be gained from opposing Kaul Hilo’s rampage.” In Jade War, we mostly follow the point of view perspectives of important members of the No Peak clan. The Pillar Hilo, his sister the Weather Man Shae, their cousin Anden who moves abroad to study, and Hilo’s wife the stone-eye Wen. Hilo is still my favourite character. The thirty-something leader of one of Janloon’s most powerful clans who is cunning, intelligent, sometimes intense, occasionally ruthless but completely family-focused. He’s changed from his days running the streets for the clan but he still shows elements of his merciless and stone-hearted former self when he has to. The other standout character here is Wen. It’s been a while since I completed Jade City but I can’t remember her being anywhere near as important and influential as she presents herself here. The characters are my favourite aspect of Jade War, especially when considering how some members of the ensemble have changed dramatically over the space of a couple of years. Jade City was predominantly about the Clan War but this time there is also a war of nations, involving many countries such as Kekon, Espenia, Ygutan and Oortokon. With that going on in the background there is also the issue of all the nations wanting Jade – a powerful stone that gives the holder phenomenal powers – in some capacity which has led to a black market for the sought after gems. In addition, there is political turmoil, individuals that are only out for themselves and an uncertain and potentially insubstantial clan truce. There really is a lot going on here in Lee’s created world, It’s complex, impressive and engaging. It’s not all dark and drab action throughout. There are some lighter, lovely moments. These are mostly when dealing with scenes of family closeness and the romantic relationships that a couple of characters have. This entry also includes an LGBT storyline. In similar fashion to Jade City before it, Jade War is strikingly original in its composition and presentation. It’s beautifully written with exceptional characters and a phenomenal storyline. There are intense set-pieces and action scenes such as shootouts and duels. There are some extremely emotional and tragic moments. Certain individuals may be hugging their children in one scene, then executing someone gangland-style in the next, and then crying about the death of a close friend a few scenes later. Jade War will take you through a complete plethora of emotions like only the best books do. The ending of this novel wraps all up nicely but leaves us with a few questions and doubts about the mental state of one of the main players. Jade War is just as good as the first entry in The Green Bone Saga but I have a feeling that Lee is saving the best for the finale and that she’s going to end this trilogy with an almighty bang. I can’t wait.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Hamad

    This review and other non-spoilery reviews can be found @The Book Prescription Actual rating: 4.5 Stars “The clan was not just people and jade and money. It was an idea, a legacy that connected the pats with the present and the future. The family’s strength was a promise.” 🌟 Disclaimer: I received a finished proof of Jade War in exchange for an honest review and my participation in a blog tour. 🌟 Often times we as readers hear about the middle book syndrome and we have all experienced the sec This review and other non-spoilery reviews can be found @The Book Prescription Actual rating: 4.5 Stars “The clan was not just people and jade and money. It was an idea, a legacy that connected the pats with the present and the future. The family’s strength was a promise.” 🌟 Disclaimer: I received a finished proof of Jade War in exchange for an honest review and my participation in a blog tour. 🌟 Often times we as readers hear about the middle book syndrome and we have all experienced the second book being meh in a series! I do understand that specially after writing a successful and the expectations are high. 🌟 But let me tell you about the middle book miracle where the second book is bigger, better, and more exciting than book 1 in all aspects of the book. 🌟 If you have read my review of book 1, you would know that I liked it but had some criticism and things that I said could be improved. And few things can make me happy as seeing authors improve as if they listened to my advice! (Don’t get this wrong, I am not saying that the author listened to me, she has great readers who helped her but it felt like so). 🌟 I have been enjoying books more lately since changing to adult fantasy books! Lee’s writing is great and very easy to get into. I like how she kind of reminded us of what happened in book1without forcing it on us. It was so smooth!!The names of the chapters are one of my favorite things about this book. (Green as fuck for example!!) 🌟 The characters are as fleshed out as in book 1. There are many surprises, many new characters and many babies! The glossary at first helped keeping all these characters in mind although they were well introduced that I didn’t have to jump back to it many times. 🌟 I read the first book with Fares and we agreed that the world building could have been better. It was better here. I mentioned that money was not prevalent in book 1 as it should have been. Surprise surprise, there was some focus on it here. The magic system did not improve significantly but I just felt more comfortable with it here. I think that there is no shame in having a simple yet entertaining system.We also have 3 maps at the start of the book as we are now talking about politics on a continent level. There was so much political and strategical intrigue and I liked how real it felt. 🌟 The plot in the book is interesting too. I felt my heart racing in anticipation a few times while reading this and that is great. There is a cool duel that left me on my tiptoe and many surprised along the way that I think you should experience for yourselves. 🌟 Summary: Jade War is the mega evolution form of Jade City where the author tended to all the small details in book 1. It felt better from all aspects and I can’t wait for book 3 now!!!

  8. 4 out of 5

    TS Chan

    ARC provided by the publisher—Orbit—in exchange for an honest review. Jade War is a magnificent sequel that brilliantly showcases the immense potential of urban fantasy, without resorting to typical mythological elements. The author mentioned in the acknowledgements about the "seemingly impossible task of following up the biggest, most ambitious novel" she's ever written with "an even bigger and more ambitious novel". If that's the case, Fonda Lee has then achieved the seemingly impossible as th ARC provided by the publisher—Orbit—in exchange for an honest review. Jade War is a magnificent sequel that brilliantly showcases the immense potential of urban fantasy, without resorting to typical mythological elements. The author mentioned in the acknowledgements about the "seemingly impossible task of following up the biggest, most ambitious novel" she's ever written with "an even bigger and more ambitious novel". If that's the case, Fonda Lee has then achieved the seemingly impossible as the second novel in The Green Bone Saga excelled over the first in every possible way. From the plotting to the worldbuilding to the characters, every component worked so well in the sequel that it gave me sheer joy reading Jade War. In the first book, Jade City, the narrative was centred mainly on the feuding two most powerful clans of Kekon and the setting focussed within the city of Janloon.  Since then, we've heard of the larger countries and continents outside of Kekon, such as Espenia and Ygutan but it was merely spoken of by the characters. As all good sequels should, this novel expands the worldbuilding by bringing the reader to the further shores of Espenia, to the city of Port Massy - the world's largest trade centre - where the use or ownership of jade by civilians is illegal, a stark contrast to the culture amongst the Kekonese. The city settings of both Janloon and Port Massy are also equally incongruous. Janloon (which already sounded so much like Kowloon) is redolent of everything that is Hong Kong, while Port Massy evokes New York City. Against this evocative backdrop, the story of the Kaul family was brought to life with masterful characterisation. Hilo, Shae, Anden, Wen, Kehn and Tar - all so lovingly crafted that they feel so alive and so real. Every single one of these characters is convincingly portrayed, through their thoughts, emotions and actions. There were so much growth and development in each one of these characters that it was so satisfying to read. Hilo has even become one of my favourite fictional male characters. He inspired the same feeling I got while reading about Kaladin from The Stormlight Archive, which is saying A LOT given that the latter is my all-time favourite. He still has that smouldering yet disarming demeanour, a dangerous edge and violent tendency, but he is unfailingly protective of his family and loved ones. And he will do whatever it takes, no matter the cost, to keep his family safe and his clan together.  His is the type of leadership that inspires undying loyalty as he takes the pain to interact with everyone personally.  In my opinion, he also has the most compelling character arc in the trilogy to date, followed very closely by Anden, Wen and Shae.  Speaking of Wen and Shae, these two female characters couldn't be more different in terms of their jade abilities, but both are equally smart, competent and courageous.  Wen, especially, simply amazes me with her bravery.  She has so much heart and fierce compassion. Having the benefit of growing up watching HK gangster movies enhanced my experience of reading these books. The scenes easily translated into vivid images in my head, especially when aided by the cinematic quality of Fonda Lee's writing. Together with the well-conceived plot and superb pacing of the narrative, Jade War was exceedingly engrossing. The last quarter of the book ratchets up the intensity even further as the subplots unravelled into the proverbial shit hits the fan. There were many great highlights in this novel, from the badass fight/action scenes (again, so reminiscent of Mistborn, especially of the later era) to the poignant and heartbreaking, and a shockingly contentious one; like prime-time drama skillfully rendered in prose form. I adore stories which have such strong emphasis and powerful takes on familial love, clans and honour codes, and this trilogy has it in spades. Adding in the magically endowed kungfu abilities, and more crucially, compelling characterisation, Jade War was easily one of my favourites and best urban fantasy books I've ever read. I think even non-fantasy readers can appreciate this trilogy, especially for fans of gangster stories like The Godfather. The Green Bones can simply be viewed as super soldiers, albeit with more power than strength, speed and ability; you know, like deflecting bullets, and snapping spines or stopping hearts with just the right touch.  I seriously and wholeheartedly recommend The Green Bone Saga. Official release date: July 25th, 2019 (UK) and July 23rd, 2019 (US) You can pre-order the book from: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Book Depository (Free shipping) You can also find this, and my other reviews at Novel Notions.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘

    I regularly wake up in the dead of night thinking about how this book is probably gonna destroy me in the best way possible, so I guess all's good 🤷‍♀️ I regularly wake up in the dead of night thinking about how this book is probably gonna destroy me in the best way possible, so I guess all's good 🤷‍♀️

  10. 5 out of 5

    CW (The Quiet Pond) ✨

    Many of you may know that Jade City is my favourite book of all time. And not just ‘one of my favourite books’ – Jade City is the favourite book. And now I find myself in the strange and unexpected position of finding a new favourite book of all time. I have loved Jade City so passionately for years that I never gave thought to the possibility that it would be dethroned so soon. It’s not often you read a book where the second book, the middle book of a trilogy no less, is undoubtedly better than Many of you may know that Jade City is my favourite book of all time. And not just ‘one of my favourite books’ – Jade City is the favourite book. And now I find myself in the strange and unexpected position of finding a new favourite book of all time. I have loved Jade City so passionately for years that I never gave thought to the possibility that it would be dethroned so soon. It’s not often you read a book where the second book, the middle book of a trilogy no less, is undoubtedly better than the first book, and yet, Fonda Lee did it. Jade War, the sequel to Jade City, has dethroned its predecessor as my favourite book of all time. Jade War is more brutal, more devastating, more emotional, and more than you could ever expect it to be. So when Fonda Lee ran a contest on Twitter, tasking readers to come up with a Jade City-inspired art to win an ARC of Jade War, never in my life had I felt so grateful and excited to have some artistic ability. And when I won the giveaway with my fanart of Shae and received it in the mail (sobbing whilst opening it, obviously), I had no idea that, in my hands, I would be my new favourite book of all time. Here is my 100% spoiler-free review of Jade War (and has no spoilers for Jade City as well)! A STORY OF THE COST AND CONSEQUENCES OF WAR Following the events of Jade City, the sequel follows the Kaul family of the No Peak Clan, one of two of Kekon’s most powerful clans in which jade-wearing warriors, Green Bones, pledge their loyalty and lives. With war brewing outside of their borders, the Kaul family find themselves balancing on a blade’s edge and faced with threats on all sides – the Mountain clan, foreign governments, criminal crime organisations, and jade smugglers. This is a sequel that takes the foundations built by its first book, and takes the story, its characters, and the stakes to new and terrifying heights. And hell, I’m still a little emotionally numb after reading it. (It was that good.) At the heart of Jade War, the story is heavily centered on war, and the implications the conflicts have on the Kaul family. True to its promises, Jade War does have some incredible action and fighting scenes that will leave you sweating with anxiety and adrenaline (Chapter 31, friends! Chapter 31!). However, Jade War is more than just fighting with blades and jade-powered abilities; Jade War is about the machinations of wars played behind closed doors: manipulation, politics, leverage, bribery, allying with enemies, character assassinations (and actual assassinations), and proxy wars mobilised by rich and major powers. Though the perspectives come largely from the Kaul family, Jade War also explores the impact such proxy wars will have on the people, particularly refugees, people in countries rife with corruption, and the lower class people who will do what they can to make it. But if you’re not too interested in the political and economic machinations of war, don’t worry: Jade War still delivers a powerful and impressive story about the members of the Kaul family. At the heart of the story, the characters and their stories coalesce into a haunting narrative about the personal and familial costs of one’s decisions and their irrevocable consequences. I liked the characters in Jade City, but Jade War made me love them – the characters’ stories are incredible, well-paced, and true to their developments. The pay-offs too? Unforgettable and will make you even more excited for the third instalment of Jade City. CHARACTERS BECOME GREENER - AND GRAYER Although there are many reasons to love Jade City, I think a reason why this book is so bloody brilliant is because of its characters. Fonda Lee is such an impeccable writer; everything she writes is so tight; there is no room for loose ends and development that meanders, and it shows. Indeed, her characters are no exception; the characters in Jade City, in particular the Kaul family, are some of the most realised and thoughtfully developed characters I have ever had the pleasure to read. Jade City established ripe ground for brilliant character development, and Lee did not squander any opportunities to develop the characters in Jade War. When I say that the characters become ‘greener’, I borrow the expression used by the characters in the book. Someone who is ‘green’ is someone who holds steadfast to their moral code as a jade warrior, a Green Bone; it is someone who adheres to their values as a Green Bone and their way of life and being. Indeed, the events of Jade War will test all the characters that you will love; it will push them to the edge, it will reveal how far they will go for their clan and their family. In particular, the story of Jade War will reveal the mortality of loyalty and honour, how tightly they will hold onto what they love and their way of life, and what they are willing to risk and sacrifice. In the same vein, Jade War will delve further into the characters, their identities, and their motivations, as they grapple with new roles and responsibilities in the clan that will force them to make impossible decisions. Across the book, you will witness the characters change, growing into the people that they have no choice but to become, and doing things that they may regret for the rest of their lives – but all, in the end, for good for the clan and their family. If it wasn’t clear in the first book, it will be evident in this: the characters in Jade War are all morally-gray. But here is what makes Jade War a brilliant book (and exemplifies why this series is fantastic): even if you disagree with the characters and their thoughts and their motivations and their choices, you will understand why they do it. Which, of course, makes it a more nail-biting read. I don’t want to talk too much about this because I think it is best left discovered as you read, but I unexpectedly found a few favourite new characters – some of which are old and you would have met in Jade City, but some of which are new. Though Shae still has a significant role in Jade War, you will see more of Wen as well – a character I was intrigued by in Jade City – and how her identity as a stone-eye (someone who doesn’t react to jade and thus can’t wield it; an identity which holds a lot of taboo) will structure the trajectory of her story, her choices, and her life. Be excited for the characters and their development in Jade War; it is fantastic. THE WORLD GETS BIGGER IN JADE WAR Friends asked me how I found this book whilst reading it, and the best word I could use to describe it was… ‘bigger’ – and I don’t mean that in the physical-page-number sense. Whilst Jade City explored and developed the city and streets and communities of the city of Janloon, Jade War will venture beyond the small island’s confines and will follow the characters on their journeys beyond its borders. Readers will visit Uwiwa Islands, spend a great deal of time in Espenia, and will become intimately familiar with the conflicts between the other nations. But not only do we become familiar with its geography and their roles and affect on Kekon, readers will also get an idea of how their cultures and values differ. Naturally, as the world of Jade War gets bigger, readers will really begin to see how small the island of Kekon is in the context of the world stage and international relations. Moreover, Jade War strongly introduces something that was alluded to Jade City but was never really palpable: the perspectives of people outside of the city of Janloon, or the people who live outside of the Green Bone way. As the characters clash with foreign governments and thus different perspectives of how the world works, Lee powerfully and profoundly reveals how insular Kekon and the clans are through the outsiders' prejudiced yet astute perspectives of Green Bones and their ethnocentric isolationist values. I thought this was brilliant, and I loved how these cultural clashes call into question the morality of the characters in the story, particularly the Kauls. Furthermore, such differing perspectives will provoke readers to think about and confront the judgments made by the Kauls and those that oppose them - and the tectonic shift in how I perceived the Kauls was so riveting. I love the Kauls dearly, but I too later realised that I had romanticised the Green Bone way and was piqued (and later, impressed) that I had become so drawn into the Kauls' journey and had fervently justified their decisions only to realise -- wait, hang on. Quite frankly, this happens so subtly in the book (around Chapter 21?) and is one of the most affecting and powerful writing I have read in a long time.  However, what I found particularly interesting (and pleasantly surprising) is that a significant subplot is dedicated to exploring a character’s immigrant experience, and is thus confronted with individuals of diaspora in another country. I actually loved this subplot immensely. I enjoyed the explorations of how people of diaspora find and maintain pieces of their heritage as a process of cultural preservation of their identities and forming communities, whilst also adopting behaviours and ways of life typical in their new home which may be alienating and othering from the perspective of someone who has never had to straddle two cultures. In other words, it was so interesting (and validating) to see the implications of a hyphenated diasporic identity within this fantasy world, and the portrayals of Kekonese-Espenian identity and experiences were authentic and multi-faceted. All of us are familiar with books with ‘second-book syndrome’; where the second book feels like filler between the epic beginning and epic ending. I am pleased, however, to tell you all that Jade War does more than just live up to its sequel: Jade War takes everything that is good in Jade City and makes it excellent. I’m calling it now: Jade War is the sequel of the year, and has set a high bar of how sequels should be done. Extraordinary in every way, Jade War is a shining example the incredible power of Asian fantasy and why Lee will forever be among my favourite authors. Lee should be proud of her hard work and of Jade War; it is an accomplishment and a masterpiece. Find my full review on my blog as well. - 3rd July: Have you ever finished a book, and then slowly realised... "well, holy shit, I just finished my new favourite book of all time?" YEAH, THAT'S ME. WITH JADE WAR. I love JADE CITY with my whole heart but... I didn't think it was possible, but JADE WAR is even better.

  11. 5 out of 5

    C.G. Drews

    I'm still so in awe of the depth and detail that's gone into this series. It kind of floors me and I respect Fonda Lee so much. 😍I will say I preferred Jade City as it felt more emotional, plus there were street fights and more sibling bickering (I just! I like!) and I felt connected. Jade War was politics heavy which, while intense and clever, left me emotionally uninvolved. I adore the Kauls though and Auden is cemented as my favourite character. Hilo disappointed me (he's really rather sexist I'm still so in awe of the depth and detail that's gone into this series. It kind of floors me and I respect Fonda Lee so much. 😍I will say I preferred Jade City as it felt more emotional, plus there were street fights and more sibling bickering (I just! I like!) and I felt connected. Jade War was politics heavy which, while intense and clever, left me emotionally uninvolved. I adore the Kauls though and Auden is cemented as my favourite character. Hilo disappointed me (he's really rather sexist). Shae continues to be a powerhouse of work ethic. Wen is a QUEEN. And I loved seeing them also have families. Leave me be. I love badass fight scenes and also Hilo being soft with his sons. The last 50pgs were utter high-stakes enthralling perfection.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Justine

    A fantastic follow up to the extremely impressive Jade City. Jade War keeps to the same standard of excellence set by its predecessor with complicated yet precise storytelling, deep worldbuilding, and fully realised characters. There were moments of shock and surprise, and given what Lee showed she was willing to do in Jade City, many turns in the story where I really wasn't sure what the outcome would be. Yet again Lee shows that she is a writer to be reckoned with; one who improves upon her pre A fantastic follow up to the extremely impressive Jade City. Jade War keeps to the same standard of excellence set by its predecessor with complicated yet precise storytelling, deep worldbuilding, and fully realised characters. There were moments of shock and surprise, and given what Lee showed she was willing to do in Jade City, many turns in the story where I really wasn't sure what the outcome would be. Yet again Lee shows that she is a writer to be reckoned with; one who improves upon her previous accomplishments with each successive book. I have no doubt that the final book in the Green Bone Saga, Jade Legacy, will be a masterful conclusion.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Deborah Obida

    “Belief is the first step toward making your dreams come true,” Jade War is a great addition to this series, it is even better than Jade City and I thought that was a great book, I lack words to say how much I love this book, it exceeded all the expectations I have. The events here took place a year and some months after book one. The synopsis says it all, but if you haven't read it, here's a summary. The clans signed a treaty to end the clan war going on, other countries wants jade for themsel “Belief is the first step toward making your dreams come true,” Jade War is a great addition to this series, it is even better than Jade City and I thought that was a great book, I lack words to say how much I love this book, it exceeded all the expectations I have. The events here took place a year and some months after book one. The synopsis says it all, but if you haven't read it, here's a summary. The clans signed a treaty to end the clan war going on, other countries wants jade for themselves to arm their armies, their neighbouring countries are warring each other and the Espenians have picked a side. The clans have to work together to make sure that the winning country don't attempt to take over theirs. The main theme in this book is family, I love the way the author depicted the Kaul and Maiks, they are not only loyal to each other they also love each other, there is also romance in this, the fight scenes were well depicted, I love it. The world building is exceptional, this is an urban fantasy but the only thing that makes it somewhat contemporary is technology, apart from technology everything else including the countries are made up, though they mirror our world. The magic system is amazing, Jade is like a gemstone, it's gotten only in Janloon and only the natives of that country can use it, when you wear the jade either as a jewelry or studded to the skin, it gives the wearer super strength, makes them fast, they can deflect both people and objects among other things. The characters in this series are awesome, the author did a good job, it's been a while since I read about characters with such depth and personality. No two characters are the same and none is the clone of another. This series is written in third person multiple POV of the Kaul family and Bero that I still loathe. Hilo has now adapted to the Pillar role, he was struggling in book one but now he is better and no longer wants to solve all the Horn's problems, he also listens to Shae. Despite the above, he is still violent and will kill anyone who threatens his family. I love that he didn't really change, he just evolved. Shae is the best weatherman ever, she knows her job and does it well, she has made lots of business opportunities that will generate money for the clan. Anden is now in Espenian, it took time but he later adapted, even abroad he met some green bones and had found a way to help the clan. Wen is the best, her relationship with Shae is what I love most in this book, if not for her efforts, the clan won't have reached the level they are in now. Her openness and willingness to help the clan is deeply admirable. The Maik brothers have more page space in this book, I got to know them better. Kehn has a POV in this book, he is so calm, loyal and hardworking.

  14. 5 out of 5

    ChopinFC

    Jade War was an absolute home run, as the narrative surpasses the first book in almost every respect! After following some intuition, and much curiosity from GR friends that recommended 'Jade City', I really enjoyed the 'urban-fantasy' , 'asian-gangster' inspired setting of the first book. At its end, so many threads were left bare and hanging, that I had to immediately get into Jade War. Jade War was stunning in conception, characterization, world building and magic system!!! It's fucking amazin Jade War was an absolute home run, as the narrative surpasses the first book in almost every respect! After following some intuition, and much curiosity from GR friends that recommended 'Jade City', I really enjoyed the 'urban-fantasy' , 'asian-gangster' inspired setting of the first book. At its end, so many threads were left bare and hanging, that I had to immediately get into Jade War. Jade War was stunning in conception, characterization, world building and magic system!!! It's fucking amazing how Fonda Lee was able to 'raise the bar' in almost every detail of the narrative! * The plot is more engaging. * The prose is more fluid, with excellent dialogue and interaction between characters. * The world of Kekon, explodes in authenticity and vividness with so much crafting and detail, that it blew me away and drew me instantly closer to the story! * The magic system felt so organic and the incorporation of 'bioactive Jade' in the story was masterfully interwoven in all of the characters and life in 'Kekon'. Fonda Lee expands the world of 'Jade City' and we finally visit other countries, specially 'Espen', which will alter the course of much of the story. Lee is quite ambitious as she brings about 'foreing wars', that will also have geo-political ramificaitons to both 'No Peak' and 'Mountain' clans. Ultimately Jade War has amazing 'action scenes' with fantastic use of 'jade powers' between the asian clans. Yet, it is the 'political' and 'business' endeavors of different clan members that will most directly affect the course of the great clan battle! I was quite impressed with the level of detail the author placed in non-violent events ( politics, business transactions) and how it all leveled out at the end of the book. The prized jewel of Jade War are its characters, and this time around Fonda Lee created some uniquely amazing individual and clan family members! We see the return of most family members from the 'No Peak' clan, and the family bond is stronger than ever. There's great exposition in the lives of protagonists such as 'Hilo', ' Shae' and 'Anden'. Secondary characters added, only improved the flow and tension in the story. You can't help but really root for mostly 'good family gangsters' that occasionally kill and dismember its enemies! “The clan is my blood and the Pillar is its master.” ― Fonda Lee, Jade War In the end, Jade War reminded of 'Godfather' or even 'Sopranos', where you know these are evil people willing to stop at nothing to keep power and protect their loved ones...but you gotta love them!! 5 Stars!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Gailey

    I don't usually write reviews but I have to. You guys. YOU GUYS. THIS BOOK IS INCREDIBLE. Fonda Lee shouldn't have been able to write a better book than Jade City because that isn't technically possible, but then somehow, incredibly: she DID??? This book is tense and lush and beautiful and violent and it completely wrecked me. I couldn't stop reading it. It features the best fight scene in the series so far, a fight scene that I had to read standing up because I was so adrenalized by it. The chara I don't usually write reviews but I have to. You guys. YOU GUYS. THIS BOOK IS INCREDIBLE. Fonda Lee shouldn't have been able to write a better book than Jade City because that isn't technically possible, but then somehow, incredibly: she DID??? This book is tense and lush and beautiful and violent and it completely wrecked me. I couldn't stop reading it. It features the best fight scene in the series so far, a fight scene that I had to read standing up because I was so adrenalized by it. The character development is seamless, the intrigue is INCREDIBLY tense, the female characters are powerful and flawed. The prose, as always, is stunning. This book is incredible. (I had to say it a second time.) Read it.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Rachel (TheShadesofOrange)

    4.5 Stars This has easily become one of my new favourite fantasy series. It just feels so different than the classic fantasy narratives I am use to reading. I thoroughly enjoyed the first book, but I loved the sequel even more. I have become more attached to the characters in this one. I love that they are all complex and morally grey, often making controversial decisions. I am definitely looking forward to reading the next book when it is released.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Allison Hurd

    Argh. I was so excited for this. The first was pitch perfect for me--an endearing mash up of mobsters, wuxia magic, gang wars and family drama. This felt more like a bunch of summaries from different points of view, a series of short stories that...don't really ever live up to the title. CONTENT WARNING: (no actual spoilers, just a list of topics) (view spoiler)[ loss of a loved one, body horror, extreme violence, off-screen rape, suicidal ideation (hide spoiler)] Things to love: -Shae, Wen, Cory, Argh. I was so excited for this. The first was pitch perfect for me--an endearing mash up of mobsters, wuxia magic, gang wars and family drama. This felt more like a bunch of summaries from different points of view, a series of short stories that...don't really ever live up to the title. CONTENT WARNING: (no actual spoilers, just a list of topics) (view spoiler)[ loss of a loved one, body horror, extreme violence, off-screen rape, suicidal ideation (hide spoiler)] Things to love: -Shae, Wen, Cory, Rohn. I thought these were great characters and each had very interesting arcs, although Rohn's disappointed me somewhat. -The politicking. The ins and outs, the favors, longstanding grudges, tits-for-tats etc. were all extensively thought out and meted out for us to understand. -The world. We see more of the world in this one, and it's an interesting take on colonizers from the POV of the recently oppressed. -Still a fun ride. Despite my reservations and nits that I pick, I read 70% of it in one go. It's got drama and humor and high stakes--it was fun to be here for it. Things I did not love: -The plot. If you thought book 1 was slow, this one makes it look like a roller coaster. I don't know what we achieved in this book? It was also quite laundry list. "This happened. And then this happened. But let me explain to you how that happened after the fact." -The writing. I thought Jade City was beautiful--emotive, evocative, but still flirting with the noir or gritty side of the genre. This was a bit more overblown and yet also more distant emotionally from the characters. There would often be multiple similes in the same sentence, and most of the book felt like a snapshot, a hightlight reel of the news like they used to show before propaganda films. Probably also because of this, there was a lot of telling and very little showing. -Anden and Hilo. I...don't understand? I don't understand them. They kept doing things that contradicted other things or actions they'd previously taken. -The solutions. Eesh. A lot of this was amateur hour crap. Sorry, Kauls, but if this is the way you respond, you need a new system. Ayt's gonna wipe the floor with you, and she ought to, she's way better at this. Where the hell were the No Peak lawyers!! This is EXACTLY why you have mob lawyers. Listen to me, aspiring gangsters: Get. A. Lawyer. Get a team of lawyers. And a media specialist. I don't care how fancy your education was, you can't be both an expert in kneebreaking and brand positioning. There you go, some free advice if for anyone who is reading this series for a "how to" guide to leading a cult, gang, or operation. -The ending. I think there was some deadline writing here. I started noticing inconsistencies, the tropes became overwhelming, things were recycled from book one...I would say this had been a 4 star book until the final few chapters. Yeah, I'm not sure what to do here. I'm disappointed that I didn't love it. I think I was just expecting a different story than the one the author wanted to tell. I was expecting to ride the high emotion and the energy we had at the end of book 1 and instead it's essentially treated as its own "season," if this were television. As such, it felt like a lot of set up or filler and not so much its own story.

  18. 5 out of 5

    hillary ☾ ⋆*・゚:⋆

    4.5 stars It took me a while to really fall for these characters, but now I have definitely reached the ‘I require therapy after reading this’ stage. I am made of pain. Nobody touch me. Will I survive an entire year without the sequel? This book upped the stakes and I expect bad things to happen in the future. I was really afraid I would not recover from this book because people say reading Jade War is pure suffering...but is it really? Is it? I’m sure as hell this was nothing, this author has more 4.5 stars It took me a while to really fall for these characters, but now I have definitely reached the ‘I require therapy after reading this’ stage. I am made of pain. Nobody touch me. Will I survive an entire year without the sequel? This book upped the stakes and I expect bad things to happen in the future. I was really afraid I would not recover from this book because people say reading Jade War is pure suffering...but is it really? Is it? I’m sure as hell this was nothing, this author has more in store and it’s not going to be all sunshine and roses—buT DO SOMETHING TO ANDEN AND I WILL BE VEEEERY MAD. I’m so amazed by how Fonda Lee managed to make me think this book was about more than just the rivalry between the two families and then at the end tipped everything over and made a fool out of me. How does a single person just go and write something this intricate with infinite roles at play? If I wanted more from Jade City (did I even know what I was asking for? ...NO) I for sure got it here. I love that more countries are involved in this mess, and I love that it spans years. That is so realistic and such a train wreck you can’t recover from. Don't be scared. It's good you guys, believe me. Hilo was the character I had most trouble connecting with, but I can say with certainty that this sequel made me really attach to him. He still does his share of shitty things and can seem like a cold character, but I think this book was also his character study (and Anden's, but I will touch on that later). It was difficult for me to understand at length the motivations behind his actions before the first third of this book, but at some point it just clicked with me. It might be that he has some seriously engaging banter with Shae. (view spoiler)[It might be that he has to take care of his kids, and that changes him and opens him more both to other characters and to the reader as a consequence. (hide spoiler)] I'm again very appreciative of how Fonda Lee was able to show this change in an incredibly realistic way. I almost feel like I'm talking about real people here. On the other side, I had no issues falling for Anden in Jade City (view spoiler)[(he was my favorite character after Lan, after all, but since Lan is dead,,,well), but the fact that he was forced to leave the country and start a new life alone in a new country made more of his personality come out. (hide spoiler)] I just love him so much, okay?? I need all the blankets to protect him from all evils. (view spoiler)[His romance with Cory was one of my absolute favorite things from his time in Esperia (*ahem* never mind the explicit sex scenes *ahem* (which honestly were the only ones I didn't cringe at, sorry not sorry lol)). I both hate and love that their romance is so hindered and (hide spoiler)] I'm very excited for what's to come. Hopefully it's all good things (looking at you, Fonda Lee). (view spoiler)[That ending was...something. How dare y'all? I can't believe Hilo was the reasonable one this time. It's so sad that it turned out like that, the Maik family has been consistently unlucky in this book and that is NOT fair. I'm very curious to see what the repercussions will be, though 👀 (hide spoiler)] I'm so happy I found this series, it's completely different from what I usually read in fantasy and honestly it was much needed. I have been listening to these books on audio and let me tell you, the narrator does a pretty great job. I love that I know how to correctly pronounce things and that every character has a different voice in my head now (though I'm not so happy about having to listen to him reading me explicit sex scenes, but I digress haha). Still, whatever the format, I believe this is a trilogy that people have to absolutely pick up. It's that good.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Brenda Waworga

    "The Clan is my blood, and the Pillar is its master" OH MY GOODNESS! Fonda Lee did it again! I love "Jade City" so much and I thought there is no way the sequel will be better than the 1st book .. but Fonda Lee surprised me! I love every single page that I read, I love all the political intrigues, family dramas, cultures and I love the most THE CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT .. that last 200 pages make me sweat, pull my hair and cry .. SO INTENSE!!! EASY 5 stars read for me! I will pledge my loyalty to "The Clan is my blood, and the Pillar is its master" OH MY GOODNESS! Fonda Lee did it again! I love "Jade City" so much and I thought there is no way the sequel will be better than the 1st book .. but Fonda Lee surprised me! I love every single page that I read, I love all the political intrigues, family dramas, cultures and I love the most THE CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT .. that last 200 pages make me sweat, pull my hair and cry .. SO INTENSE!!! EASY 5 stars read for me! I will pledge my loyalty to No Peak Clan!!🙋🏻‍♀️ “Jade War” took the stake to the higher level than what “Jade City” offer, now we experience not only Clan war but also War between countries and continents !! I love all our protagonists POVs here, esp all the Women characters… They are cunning, feminine but also very strong, I even love the villain on this series Ayt Madashi.. what a ruthless smart villain and warrior ! Kudos to Lee for writing so many amazing female (and of course Male) characters on this series I seriously cannot find a single thing I don’t like from this book, it was so masterfully crafted! The Green Bone Saga is definely one of my favorite on going series! If you are looking for Asian Inspired Fantasy book, look no further…. This series is AMUST READ!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Bradley

    This book continues the modern equivalent of an Italian (mafia, old world, new world) and Japanese (isolated island with strategic resources) Urban Fantasy. It does it in wonderful style. Where the first one felt very Godfather with magical Jade stones that can only be used by certain bloodlines except when a special drug is involved, this one picks up the pieces of the clan warfare and scatters them into the new world. Modern warfare takes on a particularly economic cast. Gaining contacts and b This book continues the modern equivalent of an Italian (mafia, old world, new world) and Japanese (isolated island with strategic resources) Urban Fantasy. It does it in wonderful style. Where the first one felt very Godfather with magical Jade stones that can only be used by certain bloodlines except when a special drug is involved, this one picks up the pieces of the clan warfare and scatters them into the new world. Modern warfare takes on a particularly economic cast. Gaining contacts and building relationships off the island is much more important now. But that doesn't stop the hell from breaking out at home, of course. And this book is a bit more unpredictable than the first. That's a good thing! I loved the characters and truly enjoyed every aspect of this tale. I feel quite invested. I feel Green. The tragedies and the injustices and the loneliness, the isolation, the joys... these are all brilliantly displayed. I'm not only invested in the clans and these characters, but I'm totally on board with the worldbuilding. The familiarities have grown into something much stronger. More enduring. I can easily recommend this for any of you mafia junkies, you UF fans, and anyone who dies for great characters. :)

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jenia

    I received an ARC of this book from the publishing company Orbit in exchange for a fair and honest review. This is book 2 in the Green Bone Sage, so beware of spoilers for book 1. Well, in short, I loved it! Jade War picks up about a year after the events of the last book. While the No Peak Clan and the Mountain Clan are officially at peace, the truce remains exceedingly uneasy. Furthermore, a proxy war is brewing in a neighbouring country, and all the interested powers want jade to support their I received an ARC of this book from the publishing company Orbit in exchange for a fair and honest review. This is book 2 in the Green Bone Sage, so beware of spoilers for book 1. Well, in short, I loved it! Jade War picks up about a year after the events of the last book. While the No Peak Clan and the Mountain Clan are officially at peace, the truce remains exceedingly uneasy. Furthermore, a proxy war is brewing in a neighbouring country, and all the interested powers want jade to support their soldiers. Hilo and Shae must deal with pressure from outside and within, from governments and smugglers, from enemies and allies, if they want their clan to survive. I think the best word to describe this sequel is bigger. The setting is expanded from one city in Kekon to include multiple other countries. The web of tensions are expanded from between two clans to include up-and-coming rogue jade users, jade smugglers, foreign governments, foreign gangsters, and immigrant communities. And the time period of the book is expanded from months to years. To be completely honest, I was a little overwhelmed at first. But eventually it clicks and when it does — oh wow. The scope just makes it feel so real, with the same messy complications and maneuvering as in our world. Fortunately, the book is grounded by its strong characters, who are just as fun to follow as all the machinations. It continues to revolve primarily around the core of the No Peak clan: Hilo, Shae, Anden, and Wen. I loved the continued focus on family; the sisters-in-law relationship between Shae and Wen shone especially bright for me. However, what I find most fascinating is how easy it is to accept the clan’s worldview and forget that they are, well, fucking brutal gangsters. (Except for Anden, who’s a sweetheart even when he’s beating up some dude for insulting his honour.) It’s only when they stand in contrast to non-clan-involved characters that they slip from anti-hero to anti-villain. To be honest, if the whole saga ends in tragedy for them, no matter how much I adore them, I’d find it fitting. For people who loved Jade City for its action, I have to say that Jade War felt a bit calmer in that respect. With the increase of politicking, there’s a corresponding decrease in crazy street brawls. For me though, there were definitely enough badass, brutal fights to quench my desire for blood -- uhh to satisfy me. And even when there’s no violence, there’s always the threat of it, and that keeps tensions high for a lot of the book — especially the last third. I think there was a point that I actually had to stand up and pace for a bit before I could continue! One last thing I wanted to mention was how much I loved the main new setting outside of Kekon: an immigrant community in Espenia. The culture there is Kekonese-but-not, some parts exactly the same, some parts more traditional than that of the rapidly changing homeland, and some parts integrated Espenian. It’s truly Kekonese-Espenian, a “hyphenated culture”, and I think it’ll ring true for a lot of people who are or have been part of an immigrant community. Altogether, Jade War is a wonderful book and a wonderful sequel. It retains what made people fall in love with the first book, while also expanding on almost every aspect. If you loved the first one — what’re you waiting for?

  22. 4 out of 5

    Melissa (Mel’s Bookshelf)

    Join me on YouTube HERE where I discuss 6 reasons why you should read this series! Well, that is a way to do a sequel!!! Rarely does a sequel outdo its predecessor, but here we are! I thought the first one was pretty darn good! I am BLOWN AWAY by this one! Jade War is set just over a year after Jade City. The clans are still at war with each other and there are some international complications now with other countries wanting a part of all this Jade business. Andon is forced to live over in Espeni Join me on YouTube HERE where I discuss 6 reasons why you should read this series! Well, that is a way to do a sequel!!! Rarely does a sequel outdo its predecessor, but here we are! I thought the first one was pretty darn good! I am BLOWN AWAY by this one! Jade War is set just over a year after Jade City. The clans are still at war with each other and there are some international complications now with other countries wanting a part of all this Jade business. Andon is forced to live over in Espenia away from his cousins, and finds himself in trouble there too! Look, nothing else I say will adequately explain the plot to you unless I spoil it. Hilo is coming into his own now as the Pillar of the clan. I am liking him a bit more in this one. Although he does one absolutely awful thing which I was so shocked about! I really hope that comes back to bite him! His decisions and actions really show how much he is giving for the clan now. He didn't want to be Pillar, but he has taken it on and is coming into his own. There was just so much more in this book! More drama, more ROMANCE! More intrigue, more BETRAYAL!!! Everything was written so cleverly, with so many twists and turns! You never knew where things were going to go next. And you NEVER knew who Fonda Lee is going to kill off! So don't get too attached to the characters! The magic system in the Green Bone Saga is so clever and refreshing. The whole series is based around Jade and how it gives certain people supernatural abilities. It is set in a modern-type world, however, there are no mobile phones or pagers... Overall minimum technology. And I love this. I love that they can't just call each other on the phone or message each other. It adds to the central plot that they become unable to contact each other and it adds to the tension and frustration of the situation. The book is deeper and richer than Jade City, the characters are so much more developed. The relationships are so much deeper. Would I recommend Jade War? Lee has just done such a spectacular job writing these characters and building this intricate, detailed world and I absolutely can't wait for the next one! I purchased Jade War at my own expense on audio.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Nils | nilsreviewsit

    “We have each other and maybe that’s the one thing our enemies don’t.” Hilo’s aura gave a dark pulse, like an angry sigh, but he didn’t move or open his eyes. Shae slumped back and closed her own eyes. “The clan is my blood and the Pillar is it’s master,” she whispered. “ I have a lot of regrets in life, but those oaths aren’t one of them.” ~ Jade War by Fonda Lee is the second book in the Green Bone saga, and it’s been one of my most anticipated reads since I read and completely gushed over the f “We have each other and maybe that’s the one thing our enemies don’t.” Hilo’s aura gave a dark pulse, like an angry sigh, but he didn’t move or open his eyes. Shae slumped back and closed her own eyes. “The clan is my blood and the Pillar is it’s master,” she whispered. “ I have a lot of regrets in life, but those oaths aren’t one of them.” ~ Jade War by Fonda Lee is the second book in the Green Bone saga, and it’s been one of my most anticipated reads since I read and completely gushed over the first book, Jade City. I honestly didn’t think this sequel could surpass its predecessor, but I wrong. Jade War incorporates all the parts that I loved from the first book, and takes this godfather esque tale to another level. There is much that goes on in this novel, as the saga progresses all the stakes get higher. The conflict between No Peak clan and The Mountain continues, the streets of Janloon are strewn with violence; with the growing trend of jade smuggling and illegal distribution, and the valid threat of foreign invasion, the need for the two clans to form peace and work together becomes crucial. Lee prominently builds upon the themes of clan loyalty, honour, and above all family duty, from the first book, and raises the bar so that these themes are even more fundamental in this sequel. The threats to No Peak clan are far more dangerous and harder to uncover, the ambitions of the Kaul family have grown even further, and the fight for survival is even more intense. Yet Fonda Lee still retains her cinematic writing style, which was something that I adored from the first book. Her prose is so descriptive there is an almost visual noir quality to each scene, and once again I was taken back to my love for gangster films. However, this book certainly incorporates different types of warfare this time around; the war between the clans and the threat of foreign invasion is not resolved by violence alone. In the first half of the book there is much political warfare that goes on, much manipulations and strategic manoeuvres. I thoroughly enjoyed this aspect; it was so thrilling to see all these narratives play out, admittedly there were many plots to follow and I did get a bit confused with who was who in certain chapters, but still, seeing the outcome was always so exciting. ~ ‘The clan was not just people and jade and money. It was an idea, a legacy that connected the past with the present and the future. The family’s strength was a promise.’ ~ Then in the second half, MY GOD, do things become fierce! I can’t give away any details because of spoilers, but let me tell you right now, Fonda Lee bloody knows how to skilfully build up tension. Every interaction and dialogue between characters is laced with veiled deeper meanings, each scene magnifies the threatening atmosphere. Then Lee delivers a duel or fight scene, and you’re seriously on the edge of your seat, you’re biting your nails, closing your eyes, because you cannot handle what may happen next! So what is it that makes me love this series so much? It is most definitely the characters, and their family dynamics. Again, I can’t help but make comparisons to The Godfather here, because that’s exactly the way the hierarchy of the clan and the Kaul family worked. Hilo, Shae, and their cousin Anden, were once again beloved to me, but now I’m fully attached to Wen, and her brothers Kehn and Tar too. Lee writes some spectacular character development, each character comes to life, they are etched into your heart, you become part of the Kaul family too because you care just as much! Let’s take Hilo, for example; he has matured, his time as The Pillar of No Peak has certainly shaped him to become more calculating, and more open to take advice. That doesn’t mean he has grown soft though, to the contrary, beneath Hilo’s exterior a volcanic fiery anger burns within him, a need for vengeance is ever present, he could certainly blow at any given moment. He’s not your shiny hero, he is just a man who will go to any lengths to protect those he loves unconditionally, damning the consequences. Sure, some of the decisions he makes is morally questionable, sometimes his short sightedness is frustrating, but you can fully understand his reasoning behind his actions. These are the characters that I truly love, ones that make mistakes but still have good intentions. Have I mentioned enough about how much I love, Hilo?! ~ ‘After nearly four years as Pillar his youthful, violent reputation had begun to fade. Now he made no secret of the fact that he was out for blood, and people nodded in understanding.’ ~ Then there are the female characters, Shae and Wen. Both have grown into their roles in the No Peak clan, and have much responsibilities. Gone are the days when either of them feel uncertain about their place in the world, gone are the days when they allow others to dominate over their actions. I loved how strong both of these women became. I have to mention here that Shae gets herself into one of the most incredible fight scenes ever! I also need to mention that the world building really expands in this instalment. We get a glimpse of life outside of Kekon, and the city of Janloon, and travel to the city of Port Massy in Espenia. Through Anden’s character we see the cultural differences between Kekon and Espenia. Whereas Janloon is a city full of clan hierarchy, tradition, and once again honour; Port Massy very much portrays a more Western setting, with its more brazenness culture, and it’s domineering brutish gang of Crews. For Anden, who is thrust into a city where he cannot speak the language, or understand the cultural rules, this is the biggest shock of his life, but one that he tries his best to adjust to. I feel one of the main conflicts present throughout Jade War was progression vs tradition. Should jade be traded freely with the Espenian military and other foreigners? Or like Hilo’s view, should it be sacred to the Kekonese race, and be it their decision on where and how much should be distributed? Kekon would economically grow with exportation, but at what cost to the Kekonese culture? This debate was really fascinating, and seeing different sides to the argument, well, it really made me think. Wow, this review is a lot longer than I intended, but I guess I just had so much to say! Anyway to wrap things up, overall Jade War is the very definition of a sequel done right. Every aspect of the book develops from the first, becomes more complex, whilst still retaining a stellar vivid prose. We really do need more urban fantasy of this standard because Fonda Lee shows us how exhilarating it can be. ARC provided by Orbit in exchange for an honest review. Jade War is due for release 25th July 2019 in the UK.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Henny

    Jade War is one of those very rare sequels that's even better than the first book! The stakes are even higher than in Jade City, the plot always has you on the edge, even in its slower/calmer parts. But just like in Jade City, the characters are outstanding. Without getting into spoilers, there are some great corruption arcs that really make you question your sympathies with some of the characters. Can't wait for Jade Legacy being published later this year and seeing where the Kaul family ends u Jade War is one of those very rare sequels that's even better than the first book! The stakes are even higher than in Jade City, the plot always has you on the edge, even in its slower/calmer parts. But just like in Jade City, the characters are outstanding. Without getting into spoilers, there are some great corruption arcs that really make you question your sympathies with some of the characters. Can't wait for Jade Legacy being published later this year and seeing where the Kaul family ends up!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Monte Price

    I'm quite conflicted on where I stand with this particular installment. On most levels I had a better experience reading Jade War than I did the first book. I enjoyed getting more of a glimpse at Espenia and the world outside of Janloon. I liked getting more of a history lesson, seeing the experience of the Kekonese diaspora. I think that this book really highlights just how masterful Fonda Lee is when it comes to crafting a world. My favorite parts of the book by far were seeing the larger worl I'm quite conflicted on where I stand with this particular installment. On most levels I had a better experience reading Jade War than I did the first book. I enjoyed getting more of a glimpse at Espenia and the world outside of Janloon. I liked getting more of a history lesson, seeing the experience of the Kekonese diaspora. I think that this book really highlights just how masterful Fonda Lee is when it comes to crafting a world. My favorite parts of the book by far were seeing the larger world and how that played into the clan affairs. Where I struggle is kind of the same place I struggled with Jade City, these characters. In the absence of a plot you're forced to care about seeing these characters manuever through clan politics and international relations. Once again I really felt that the characters I wanted to see more of were just, absent. Like Wen? The glimpses we got to spend with her were nice, far more than I what we got from Jade City, but also never enough. Also what happens to the good sis Wen in the third act? That was a personal attack against me. Hilo continued to be as unhinged as ever, there are many things that I could be upset with Hilo for in this book. I think the idea that he would willingly put a target on his cousins head, that's up there with being unforgiveable. Like I guess Anden knows about the target, but like, we aren't gonna sit here and act like family is that important and how Anden can only be useful to you if he wears Jade. I also just didn't like Anden being reduced to being a weapon. I'm also just very over the homophobia of characters in this world. I truly don't care to hear any justification for it, like Lee crafted a world that I'm sure is based in reality but is vibrant separated from it that seeing the homophobia just tossed in to create conflict is by far the laziest aspect of this story. I'm curious to see where Jade Legacy is going to end. After reading this nebulous second book I've given up any idea that I'll get a truly satisfying conclusion from this series, simply because I don't quite think this is the kind of story that can have one. It's very much the kind of story that will feel as though we're closing the book on this chapter but there is clearly a lot going on in this world and Jade War pulls back the curtain a little so we can get a glimpse of it.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

    Such a fantastic follow-up. I really loved Jade City and Jade War didn't disappoint. It's much bigger in scope and it allows the main players from the first book to grow in interesting ways. I was particularly impressed by how cinematic the action in the first book was and every single fight scene in Jade War is just as gripping. What this book offers more of is the Weather Man's side of the clan. The business dealings, political intrigue and economic plotting are just as thrilling as the duels. I Such a fantastic follow-up. I really loved Jade City and Jade War didn't disappoint. It's much bigger in scope and it allows the main players from the first book to grow in interesting ways. I was particularly impressed by how cinematic the action in the first book was and every single fight scene in Jade War is just as gripping. What this book offers more of is the Weather Man's side of the clan. The business dealings, political intrigue and economic plotting are just as thrilling as the duels. I think that really says a lot about how Fonda Lee creates stakes. You care about the characters and since the outcome of a trade deal could affect them just as much as the outcome of an assassination attempt it feels just as vital to read about. For me the most interesting part of the story was how it explored the Kekonese diaspora. I loved the thought and care Fonda Lee put into making the Espenian-Kekonese feel like a real ethnic community trying to exist and find their place in a huge western city without losing their culture and identity. It helps that Anden is my favourite character and we learn about all of this through his eyes. Jade abilities are just so much fun to read about too. I love that it's a limited form of magic. None of the characters have all their problems solved because they've got jade. Green Bones still need to be very smart and very careful to survive. Jade War delves a little more into exactly what Perception can do which led to some amazing Daredevil shit that was so, so cool. I flew through Jade War. It was really so much fun to read. This is such a special series. I'm so glad the first book wasn't a fluke!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kaitlin

    This book is a sequel so I don't want to give away too many spoilers, but I have to say I am completely in love with where this gang-inspired asian fantasy series is going. Jade is a commodity and it's the cause of a lot of hate and rivalry. There's a lot of in-fighting and a lot of conflict every time. In this particular one I enjoyed Shay (sp? I audiobooked), Anden, and the Pillar's wife as their stories fascinated me most and I think the ladies really owned :) The Mountain and No Peak continue This book is a sequel so I don't want to give away too many spoilers, but I have to say I am completely in love with where this gang-inspired asian fantasy series is going. Jade is a commodity and it's the cause of a lot of hate and rivalry. There's a lot of in-fighting and a lot of conflict every time. In this particular one I enjoyed Shay (sp? I audiobooked), Anden, and the Pillar's wife as their stories fascinated me most and I think the ladies really owned :) The Mountain and No Peak continued to war and their struggles became more political even than in the first one here. I think the politics really works as a backdrop, but I enjoyed the overall focus of the story on the characters too. Lots of great moments and I enjoyed the whole book, it was fast and furious and easy to get my head back into even after a long time between the first and second. 4*s and I will certainly be excited for the next book after all the drama that took place here between friends, lovers and rivals.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Karima chermiti

    1) Jade City (The Green Bone Saga, #1) : 5 Stars Fonda Lee has no mercy Jade City was a phenomenal book and Jade war is even better. I can’t wrap up my mind of how brilliant this sequel is. I’m lost for words. The clan was not just people and jade and money. It was an idea, a legacy that connected the pats with the present and the future. The family’s strength was a promise The story was flawless, The execution and the structure were outstanding and the pacing was perfect. I was und 1) Jade City (The Green Bone Saga, #1) : 5 Stars Fonda Lee has no mercy Jade City was a phenomenal book and Jade war is even better. I can’t wrap up my mind of how brilliant this sequel is. I’m lost for words. The clan was not just people and jade and money. It was an idea, a legacy that connected the pats with the present and the future. The family’s strength was a promise The story was flawless, The execution and the structure were outstanding and the pacing was perfect. I was undeniably immersed in the story, I lost myself to it. I cried so much, I gasped in disbelief and at times, I felt my chest caving and my heartbreaking. I was moved, touched, shocked, and challenged for the love I had for the characters. I was put for the ringer and I just don’t know how I’m going to survive the final book in this trilogy. I don’t think any other book kept me at my toes this year as Jade War did. The stakes were higher than ever as the conflict is made larger by the expansion of the world and the threats that lies within it. The Kaul’s family is struggling to keep ahead in a war that’s bleeding them dry and enemies are closing in from all sides. The possibility of death was like the weather—you could make attempts to predict it, but you would likely be wrong, and no one would change their most important plans due to threat of rain Something I admired about the first book and even more so in the second is that decisions have consequences and they will certainly be felt and felt deeply. I understood quickly on with Jade City that Fonda Lee doesn’t hold any punches so I knew we could be dealt one loss after another. That absence of security is what made me appreciate and care about every single moment with every single character because they could be taken away in a heartbeat. “The clan is my blood and the Pillar is its master,” she whispered. “I have a lot of regrets in life, but those oaths aren’t one of them.” The characters are some of the best in fantasy right now. The things they do and the things they go through made me feel conflicted, I love them but I despise and hate some of their choices and I worry for them but I’m also scared of them. I never felt this range of motions for fictional characters before and I doubt I will again. Fonda Lee also has a way of making her story feel so personal by keeping us close to her characters' inner thoughts and struggles. And I deeply appreciate how the push and pull between plot and characters made these books equally grand and intimate. I can keep talking about my love for this book until there are no words left. Jade War is easily my favorite fantasy of the year and I can’t believe how much more the story had to offer. Jade Legacy will destroy me, of that I’m sure. All that mortals could do was accept the lot they were given, and yet still fight to better their own fate and that of their loved ones.

  29. 4 out of 5

    mich

    Omg I feel like I’m breaking aisho or something right now. 2.5 stars Look, no spoilers but I’m disappointed. Jade City was one of the small handful of books that I put on my favorites shelf last year. I was expecting to love this. Too much learning still! Second book sequels and I have a pretty good relationship. If I liked the first book in a trilogy, odds are that I’ll like the second book. I mean, what’s not to like? The “hard part” is over right? Learning the multitude of character names, the Omg I feel like I’m breaking aisho or something right now. 2.5 stars Look, no spoilers but I’m disappointed. Jade City was one of the small handful of books that I put on my favorites shelf last year. I was expecting to love this. Too much learning still! Second book sequels and I have a pretty good relationship. If I liked the first book in a trilogy, odds are that I’ll like the second book. I mean, what’s not to like? The “hard part” is over right? Learning the multitude of character names, the places, the terminology, the magic structure, the hierarchy - it’s a lot to grasp and get used to and it’s what can sometimes make the first book in a fantasy series a little rough. But once you make it through that, it’s easy sailing in the next book right? You already have all the background, you’ve picked your favorite characters and you know who you’re rooting for. Book sequels are then all about exploring deeper character development and having the stakes raised and all that good stuff. Holy shit though the hard part was NOT over in this book. In fact, it was HARDER. I totally struggled, which surprised me cuz I didn’t struggle at all in the first book. I mean, I get it. Lee expands the world in this sequel, reaching far beyond what we saw in the first book. With this ambitious move from the streets of Janloon to the global stage, we find ourselves thrust into a wide world of international relations and politics. We're forced to learn about a whole new slew of characters and places. The scope of this book is pretty amazing actually. It's seriously BIG. But. . . it was fucking dry as hell. There were pages and pages and PAGES that read like a straight up political science or history textbook for school. I’m not the type of person who reads textbooks recreationally sooo...this didn’t really work for me. I feel bad complaining about this because honestly? This book is SMART. This isn't some author who just throws some vague "war" at you and barely touches on all the shit that actually goes into the conflict. Lee gives you EVERYTHING. All the intricacies of foreign policy, political machinations, plots within plots, ALL the little details. I'll be the first to admit that it's impressive as hell. It's also exhausting to read. Weird jarring time jumps Ok this was something that really ended up bothering me. You start a new chapter and in like the third paragraph it’s dropped on you that months and months have passed since the last chapter. Months, years go by without a clear sense of feeling like that time has actually gone by. Do you get what I mean? It was jarring. I can usually deal with time skips and I see why it was necessary here given the scope of what this book tried to cover. But it just happened much too often in this book and it left me feeling SUPER disconnected. I felt like I was an outsider just looking at things happening. Like I was watching the news or a documentary or something. With the first book I felt like I was IN the story, part of it, like I was living it with the characters. But with this book, I felt like I was just reading about things happening to them. HiloShaeAndenWenKehnTar My emotional connection to the characters wasn't quite there in this book, which is INSANE to me cuz the first book left me very, very attached to them. The residual feelings alone from book 1 should have been enough to carry me through this entire 600 page sequel. The fact that it didn't shows me just how much the first two things I complained about above affected my reading experience. I can appreciate how Lee tries to strike a balance with the focus on the book between all the strategy shit and politics with the personal character connections. And she's successful to a point. There are some truly personal character POV chapters here and there. But I don't know - I swear, there wasn't even ONE moment in this book that emotionally whacked me the way book 1 did to me MANY times. It was disappointing. (well, there was this ONE part in this book . . . it wasn't emotional, but it was the most exciting part ever and the only part that made me feel truly excited while I read this. If you read the book, then I KNOW you know what part I'm talking about!!! But even that ended up ultimately being kinda a let down for me.) Anyway. That was just my reading experience. Of course it might be different for you (and it probably will be). And it wasn't all bad for me at all either. The action sequences are kickass. Lee's writing when describing anything physical (action, places, etc.) is fluid and descriptive while still being very easy to read - it's pretty much perfection. And all that stuff I was complaining about? That could actually ALL be seen as part of what makes this book better than the first one! It just depends how it goes for you. I should probably round this up instead of down but I paid $13.99 for this which is more than I ever pay for a kindle book, which kinda irritated me and add that to my insanely high expectations and then me not really enjoying it. . . sorry, it's getting rounded down. ALSO - btw, if you're wondering -- there is no stupid cliffhanger at the end of this book. This book does have an ending (whether or not you'll like the ending will be up to you), and you'll end it knowing you'll read the next book. But you don't have to be afraid of some mid-scene cliffy that makes you want to scream. (I almost wrote a whole spoiler section (cuz there's SO MUCH i want to talk about specifically) but I'll leave off on that since this book is still so new)

  30. 5 out of 5

    Beth

    The scope of the series expands in this volume, both in time and in physical scale. Children are born, the No Peak Clan extends its financial influence into Espenia, and jade smuggling becomes an international trade that No Peak tries to keep under its control, or to repress when interests outside the clan sidestep its influence. This book took quite some time for me to read. A friend or two even wondered why it was taking so long! It ended up becoming much like a serial or soap opera as I read a The scope of the series expands in this volume, both in time and in physical scale. Children are born, the No Peak Clan extends its financial influence into Espenia, and jade smuggling becomes an international trade that No Peak tries to keep under its control, or to repress when interests outside the clan sidestep its influence. This book took quite some time for me to read. A friend or two even wondered why it was taking so long! It ended up becoming much like a serial or soap opera as I read along--palatable in short doses, somewhat exhausting beyond that. This slower pace kept on until about the 75% mark, and the rest went much faster. Many of the riveting, personal-scale conflicts from the first book returned or were given more depth. Shae and Wen had excellent sequences in Jade War, including a couple that hit me to the heart. Anden's time in Espenia was great, too, and introduced some characters who I hope will carry over into the next book. Hilo went through some changes that will absolutely have repercussions later on. Themes of womanhood and familial obligation added weight to the ongoing drama. Unfortunately, a lot of this volume was also spent setting up global situations and conflicts, and the next generation of Kauls. So many strategy and board meetings! So many babies! While mildly interesting in their own right, the exposition sequences also created a distance between myself and the book. An omniscient point of view isn't bad in itself, but too much detail of this kind can siphon the life out of it. While I'm not an editor who could point to exact chapters or scenes that bogged down Jade War's story, I definitely felt that sluggishness as a reader. On the whole, this series seems like it will be a dynastic saga, with a new generation of Kauls inheriting the domestic conflicts of its progenitors, while also trying to find its place, survive, and thrive on a global stage. I preferred the more intimate scale of the first book--and the sequences in this book that hearkened back to it--and had only a mild interest in the rest. There's a lot to like here, but if it had been quite a bit shorter it would have had a greater impact. As is, it had some extraordinarily good moments, though not enough to make me feel it lived up to the promise of Jade City. I'm still looking forward to the last volume, albeit with a lower level of hype-fueled expectation. Three and a half stars, rounded down.

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