Book Review

The Jade Setter of Janloon

The Jade Setter of Janloon

  • Author: Fonda Lee
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Publication Date: April 30, 2022
  • Publisher: Subterranean Press
  • Series: The Green Bone Saga #0.5

Thank you to NetGalley and Subterranean Press for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Fonda Lee returns to the world of the Green Bone Saga with a new standalone novella.

The rapidly changing city of Janloon is ruled by jade, the rare and ancient substance that enhances the abilities and status of the trained Green Bone warriors who run the island’s powerful clans.

Pulo Oritono is not one of those warriors. He’s simply an apprentice jade setter with dreams of securing clan patronage and establishing a successful business. His hopes are dashed, however, when a priceless jade weapon is stolen from the shop where he works.

Now, Pulo has three days to hunt down the thief, find the jade, and return it to its rightful owner if he wants to save his future prospects, the people he cares about, and his very life. The desperate mission will lead Pulo to old vendettas, vast corruption, and questions about everything and everyone he thought he knew.

If you know anything about me, you know how much I adore the Green Bone Saga. While Jade Legacy was exceptional, and the perfect ending to the series, I was hoping that I wouldn’t have to say goodbye to the series just yet. So when I came across this, I couldn’t resist requesting it. Thankfully, I got an ARC and was able to immerse myself in this gorgeous series again. 

After the action-packed and intense trilogy, this novella was a way to slide right back into Kekon and the Green Bone clans, with a whole new cast of characters. It takes place two years before Jade City, and it gave me the opportunity to see the world through different eyes. While the trilogy focuses on the warriors of the clans and the people closest to them, this book is a lot more laid back, centering on Pulo Oritono, an apprentice to a master jade setter. 

The shop isn’t linked to either of the major clans, and does impartial work for all of them. Since it provides a valuable service and the best quality work, the shop is well-known and treated benevolently by all clans. They don’t get involved in clan business and don’t take sides. However, when a shocking theft occurs, the lives of all three employees are turned upside down.

At first, I was just enjoying the atmosphere of the story, which felt like returning to an old favorite place that I haven’t been to in a while. But once the theft happened, the story picked up the pace and sent Pulo on the hunt to find the missing jade and save everyone from retribution. As I made my way through the story, I couldn’t help but get a little thrill at seeing Hilo and Lan before their lives became so hectic and dangerous. 

It’s a short read, and I flew through it in about an hour and a half. This is the kind of book that can be read in a single sitting, although stupid responsibilities and my body’s need for sleep prevented me from doing that. If you’re already a fan of the Green Bone Saga, this is a perfect little fix to bring you back to Janloon and see some of your favorite characters. Even if you haven’t read any of these books yet, this is a good place to start, providing a little insight into what to expect, although the main books tell a much grander, action-packed, and quick moving story. However, this was a really enjoyable read and I loved every second of it.

People who have sat around with me while I’m reading, especially when there’s a surprising reveal, a shocking plot twist, or an unexpected event often look up in alarm when I gasp audibly. The gasp factor is directly related to the number of times I audibly gasp during a reading, and there isn’t an upper limit.

Gasp Factor: 4

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