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Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Book Review: Jade War (The Green Bone Saga, #2) by Fonda Lee

BOOK review
Started on: 8 June 2022
Finished on: 29 June 2022
Title: Jade War (The Green Bone Saga, #2)
Author: Fonda Lee
Publisher: Orbit
Pages: 590 pages / 608 pages (e-book)
Year of Publication: 2019
Price: Rp 205,000 (
Rating: 5/5
*for those who haven't read the first book, this review may contain spoiler.
"The world outside of Kekon was exerting forces that derailed even a blood feud between the Green Bone clans."
On the island of Kekon, the No Peak clan is stuck in a violent feud for control of the capital city and the supply of magical jade that they alone have possessed for hundreds of years. Beyond Kekon, war is brewing. Powerful foreign governments and criminal kingpins have started to gain interest towards jade, Kekon's most prize resource, that could make them rich and give them what they need to topple their rivals. Faced with threats on all sides, No Peak is forced to form new and dangerous alliances, confront their enemies, and put honor aside in order to do whatever it takes to survive.
"If this is supposed to be peace, I think I prefer war."
"We have more at stake now, and it's in everyone's best interests for our clans to keep the peace. But we will never be at peace. You'll pursue your ruthless agenda—and my clan will pursue ours. Make no mistake: We're still at war, in a different way."
After finishing Jade City, I immediately started reading the sequel because I can't wait to see what's going to happen next between the No Peak and Mountain clan. The events that happened in the first book was mind-blowing, but I never thought that there will be even more jaw-dropping moments in this one. Since I'm already so immersed in the world that Fonda Lee created, I find myself enjoying the sequel a lot more because I am emotionally invested in the characters and almost feel like I'm part of the clan—I get anxious and stressed out a lot because of what's happening to them 😂. It's amazing how the author is able to build the tension and raise the stakes so well as the story progresses—even through details that seems mundane and not important at first. I was 100% sure that someone else is going to die in this book, but having no idea who it's going to be definitely kept me on the edge of my seat from start to finish 😰.

Still written in the same way as the previous book, Jade War started with the death of Kaul Sen—I don't think this is a spoiler since he's an old man 👴. After a year and a half of open war, both No Peak and Mountain clans has weakened and neither is strong enough to win over the other; which led them to finally declare a truce—for now. Instead of fighting against the Mountain clan directly, this book includes a lot of political issue and war that involves foreign countries like Espenia, Shotar, and Ygutan—which then affected Kekon as well. Anden, who refused to wear jade, was sent to Port Massy in Espenia to continue his studies. This explores a whole new territory where he meets a pseudo-clan that will help No Peak clan to expand their business outside of Kekon. Now more than ever, other countries has high interest towards jade and criminals have gotten rich through jade smuggling during the clan war. The conflict continues as No Peak and Mountain clan tried to take advantage of these foreigners to bring down their enemy in a different way.
"I'm afraid you've something to learn from your enemy Ayt Madashi. To lead a Green Bone clan, there are times you need to be as cold as steel."
"Every family has some darkness that it's afraid to share, even the ones that aren't famous and powerful."
I won't elaborate the plot even further to avoid spoiler but I really want to discuss my thoughts and feelings about some things that happened in this book. As I said earlier, I already expected that someone is going to die; however, the death that happened to one of the clan members completely took me by surprise because there's nothing suspicious prior to the incident. It happened in one freaking sentence and I had to read it over and over again to make sure I was reading it correctly 🤯. My jaw literally dropped and I was in complete shock. My heart was beating so fast and I was at a loss for words. The surprise doesn't stop there though, I was utterly taken aback when it was revealed that someone close to the clan was part of the assassination. I know this 'spy' will not survive and it was one of the most heartbreaking execution that I've ever read in a book. It needs to be done, but it still breaks my heart when I think about it 🥲💔 I'd say that it was a very merciful execution because it spares the 'traitor' from worse and excruciating death. Hopefully I don't spoil anything by saying all these, I just need to pour my emotions out 😂.

Another gripping scene is another assassination attempt that almost feels like a scene from a Mission Impossible movie 😂. It was truly a roller coaster of emotion because at the start I felt confident, then I was scared, anxious, thought that the mission will fail; a while later I was excited, satisfied, relieved, but shortly afterwards I was shocked, nervous, and tense before finally being able to relax again. Yes, it was indeed a crazy ride. I really thought that everyone involved was going to die and felt like it was a rather pathetic death for them. There are many more events that happened in this book that was equally unexpected and surprising, but I'll stop myself here to avoid spoiling the story too much 🤐.

"Kekon's most famous classical play about this period, The Two Thrones, begins with an oft-quoted line that harkens to Deitist philosophy regarding the origin of earthly conflict: "Out of small resentments, spring great wars.""
"We're always alone with our decisions... You can make a rational, well-informed choice, and still be unprepared for what it means."
Now let's talk about the characters because I didn't get to discuss about them much in my previous review. The first one is Kaul Shae, the Weather Man of No Peak, who went through a LOT in this book. I know I can't describe what happened to her in detail because it will surely spoil the whole story and ruin the fun for those who haven't read this book. But one of the coolest moment is when Shae boldly offered a clean blade—a duel between two Green Bones. This is also a jaw dropping moment because I totally didn't foresee her doing that without considering the consequences, one of them might be death. The battle was so epic and and intense because I have absolutely no idea how it's going to turn out. One thing I know for sure, Fonda Lee is never hesitant to kill a character—so everyone has an equal fighting chance 😂. I admire Shae's character because she had to make a lot of difficult decisions in this book while considering what's best for her family and the clan.

Maik Wen is another character worth highlighting because despite being a stone-eye—someone who's immune to the effects of Jade—she's able to prove herself useful to the clan by taking advantage of her immunity. She also helped Shae a lot in managing the spies throughout the city in the most sophisticated way, finding out secrets that will support No Peak's plan to bring down the Mountain. The last character that I'll mention is Bero, because I can't believe he's still alive at this point after going through a lot of ups and downs. He's a pretty despicable character but provides an interesting element to the whole story. To be honest, I'm amazed at how the author gives depth and story behind all of the characters in this book—even some of the minor ones. It enables us to understand the reasons behind what they do and allow us to see the bigger picture. The story gets even more interesting now that there are children in the clan, which will probably be an heir issue in the near future.
"We've both crossed lines we never meant to. We've made decisions that we'll have to live with the rest of our lives. We have that much in common."
"Having been trained at the Academy and raised in the Kaul family, Anden had been indoctrinated since childhood with the idea that for Green Bones, 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."
I still can't get over how good this sequel us and how much I love this series already! I absolutely enjoyed the writing style and was completely immersed in the story from start to finish. There's so much at stake now and the ending of this book hints at another uprising that might endanger the lives of all Green Bones. I'm really looking forward to reading the third and final book in this series, but I don't think my heart is ready to see anyone else die 🥺. I do hope that Fonda Lee will wrap up the whole series well and give us the satisfying ending that this incredible story deserves!
"The clan is my blood and the Pillar is its master... I have a lot of regrets in life, but those oaths aren't one of them."
by.stefaniesugia♥ .

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