How Long ’til Black Future Month? has completely blown my mind and I don’t know how to act. What is this magic? Is Jemisin even real? Why has no one recommended her to me in the past? These are questions that need answers! I loved this collection. OMG!
Category: Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Fiction, Science Fiction, Collections & Anthologies
Published: November 2018
Length: 416, paperback
Three-time Hugo Award winner and NYT bestselling author N. K. Jemisin challenges and delights readers with thought-provoking narratives of destruction, rebirth, and redemption that sharply examine modern society in her first collection of short fiction, which includes never-before-seen stories.
Spirits haunt the flooded streets of New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In a parallel universe, a utopian society watches our world, trying to learn from our mistakes. A black mother in the Jim Crow South must save her daughter from a fey offering impossible promises. And in the Hugo award-nominated short story “The City Born Great,” a young street kid fights to give birth to an old metropolis’s soul.
Should You Bother Reading “How Long ’til Black Future Month?”
If I could use one word to describe this book, I’d choose “breathtaking.” How Long ’til Black Future Month? took my breath away. If you’ve been following my book reviews this year, you’d have noticed that I’m enjoying more magical realism, sci-fiction-ey fantasy type books. It’s the main reason I bought this.
Look, I’ve only heard about Jemisin’s literary genius, this is my first time experiencing something so beautiful. The worlds she has created in this collection is nothing short of spectacular(see what I did there). Each of the stories is its own invention. I mean, there is little reliance on convention. Sure, you’d find the occasional dragon or witch in these stories, but they rarely fill the role you would expect them to.
Instead, we get stories like “The City Born Great” where a homeless street artist builds a connection to New York City so strong he is bound to play literal midwife as it births itself into a new era. His relationship with the city takes him a long time to recognize.
“Cuisine des Mémoires” is a story about a restaurant which can cook any meal from the past if they are given some details about it. This warns against dwelling on the past, and you get to “Too Many Yesterdays, Not Enough Tomorrows” which explores the value of social interaction and forming connections with others.
“Cloud Dragon Skies” is a haunting sci-fi story where a future Earth has seen most people move to live in the space stations and those who remain on the earth damaged by pollution are living a very simple life. Scientists, however, have a cunning plan to restore balance. A story weaving attitudes to women, falling in love and humanity’s arrogance towards nature into a very startling conclusion.
Like, I loved so many stories in this anthology and I think it ‘s one of the best fantastical reads I have ever experienced. That’s what this was. An experience. Highly recommended if you want to step into this genre.
About The Author
N. K. Jemisin is a Brooklyn author who won the 2016 Hugo Award for Best Novel for The Fifth Season, which was also a New York Times Notable Book of 2015, and the 2017 Hugo Award for Best Novel for The Obelisk Gate.
She previously won the Locus Award for her first novel, The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, and her short fiction and novels have been nominated multiple times for Hugo, World Fantasy, Nebula, and RT Reviewers’ Choice awards, and shortlisted for the Crawford and the James Tiptree, Jr. awards. She is a science fiction and fantasy reviewer for the New York Times
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