Welcome to the final post in the read-along of N.K. Jemisin's The Kingdom of Gods! This post covers through the end of the book, and questions were provided by Violin in a Void. I have had a lot of fun participating in these read-alongs of Jemisin's books, and I hope there are more books that we can all read together and discuss in the future! My post has been sadly delayed a few days, due to unexpected complications in my offline life (including the tragic deaths of two laptops!). As always, beware of spoilers below!
1. How do you feel about they way the relationship between Sieh, Deka and Shahar developed? How might this affect them as the Three of a new realm?
It seems like Sieh was unconsciously modeling their relationship after the Three, in that they loved each other, but there was plenty of petty relationship drama. I hope that doesn’t spark a new God’s War in Sieh’s new universe, and that Shahar does not go the way of Itempas if she feels lonely. It's possible that they got all their drama out while human, and maybe now they can settle down and be good rulers of the universe.
2. The series as a whole and this novel in particular is full of parents, and child-parent relationships often play major roles in the plot and characterisation. Is there anything that stood out for you? Any other thoughts on the theme?
Hm, I suppose there was the general idea that parents have to recognize when their children need to grow up and take over their own universe. Also, through Kahl/Sieh and Remath/Dekarta, that neglect automatically makes you a bad parent, no matter what else you do. In other relationships, it seems like it was showing that 'being a loving parent' is not the same thing as just loving your child in your heart.
3. Can you sympathise at all with Kahl's desire for revenge or was it just too insane?
I suppose he had spent all that time all alone in a pocket universe, so he had little else besides his anger and loneliness to sustain him. I can also see why he would have very little stake in this universe, since he’d barely ever been in it before. Destroying it might not have seemed like a big deal to him.
4. "Nature is cycles, patterns, repetition." What do you think of the way this idea plays into the plot and worldbuilding?
While there were cycles, patterns, and repetition, we also saw that things don’t have to repeat in exactly the same way. Because Itempas is capable of some change, for instance, there may not be another God’s War. Because Sieh was, in the end, willing to grow up, he was able to defuse the first potential ‘war’ in his little group of three (which would have involved Dekarta killing his sister).
5. Are you satisfied with the way everything turned out?
When Sieh died, I was pretty sad. But he was the narrator, so I assumed he must have continued in some form. I wonder if that’s the only way he actually could grow up; being true to his nature by playing one last, massive trick. That was also probably the mostly peaceful possible way to dethrone the Arameri, something that has been sorely needed for thousands of years. Shahar was the perfect one to destroy her family’s power.
6. Now that we've finished the series, what do you think of it as a whole? How doesThe Kingdom of Gods compare to the first two books?
The novels’ stories stand alone pretty well, but I think it is stronger when read as a trilogy. The first established the world, the second showed it from the point of view of a demon commoner, and the third from the point of view of a godling, so while it was the same world, there was always something new. I enjoyed each book more than the one before!