{Story Diary} Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse | An Epic Fantasy Unlike Anything I've Ever Read + Favorite Quotes

Oct 13, 2020

 For fans of R. F. Kuang, S. A. Chakraborty, Tochi Oneybuchi, and N. K. Jemisin

black sun by rebecca roanhorse adult epic fantasy sff
Black Sun
by Rebecca Roanhorse
Epic Fantasy, SFF, Historical Fiction, LGBTQ+
October 13, 2020 from Simon & Schuster/Saga Press

From the New York Times bestselling author of Star Wars: Resistance Reborn comes the first book in the Between Earth and Sky trilogy, inspired by the civilizations of the Pre-Columbian Americas and woven into a tale of celestial prophecies, political intrigue, and forbidden magic. 

A god will return
When the earth and sky converge
Under the black sun 

In the holy city of Tova, the winter solstice is usually a time for celebration and renewal, but this year it coincides with a solar eclipse, a rare celestial event proscribed by the Sun Priest as an unbalancing of the world. 

Meanwhile, a ship launches from a distant city bound for Tova and set to arrive on the solstice. The captain of the ship, Xiala, is a disgraced Teek whose song can calm the waters around her as easily as it can warp a man’s mind. Her ship carries one passenger. Described as harmless, the passenger, Serapio, is a young man, blind, scarred, and cloaked in destiny. As Xiala well knows, when a man is described as harmless, he usually ends up being a villain. 

Crafted with unforgettable characters, Rebecca Roanhorse has created an epic adventure exploring the decadence of power amidst the weight of history and the struggle of individuals swimming against the confines of society and their broken pasts in the most original series debut of the decade.

Meridian / City of Tova

black sun map
[Image Source]

black sun map
[Image Source]

The 4 Sky Made clans of Tova

➸ Winged Serpent
➸ Golden Eagle
➸ Water Strider
➸ Carrion Crow

Reasons to add Black Sun to your library right now

black sun rebecca roanhorse moodboard
 It's a high stakes political intrigue and rivalries fantasy that will draw you into the expansive world the whole way through.

 The worldbuilding, inspired by various Indigenous cultural influences, is excellent, sharp, innovative and expansive. The world of Meridian is populated by mermaids and corvids, and filled with forbidden magic, mystical quest, assassins, tempests, spear maidens, sailors, rival clans, cults, god-like godmade storms, crow god, sun priest, and a rare life-changing celestial event. And the prose is absolutely vivid and vibrant which really brings this fantasy to life. It's unlike anything I've ever read and I cannot wait for more to come in this trilogy. Rebecca Roanhorse has the range. 🌎

☀ Black Sun is a pre-Columbian America's inspired fantasy and you'll see that geographically, and in the cultural influences Roanhorse drew from that's incorporated into the story, characters attire, the trades, as well as addressing generational trauma. ⛵

☀ Complex and fully developed characters (one you may consider morally grey) that you will come to love and whom complete this truly expansive world. There are multiple POVs told from the main characters that offers readers a chance to know the characters, a peak into their lives and past, how they feel and how they view the world. It's hard not to become immersed into these characters lives and relationships with each other and their roles in the story. It's also hard to tell if a character is hero, villain or anti-hero, so this mystery keeps you on your toes and anticipating to see more character arcs unfold throughout the trilogy.

☀ The rep. One of the MCs is nonbinary whom prefers neo-pronouns (xe/xir) to which the characters respect. Another MC is bisexual. The casual queerness is commonplace in their non-cis/heteronormative society and it's very much appreciated. There's nuanced disability rep as well which was also handled with care (i.e. the author hired sensitivity readers). 🌈

☀ The story does revolve around the winter solstice, a time for celebration and renewal, however this one will coincide with a solar eclipse which is a rare celestial event that tips the balance of their world. The Convergence will explain where the book title comes from. ❄☀

☀ The honey scene, the bath scene. Those who've read it -- y'all know exactly what I'm talking about. For those who have yet to -- you'll know once you get there. All I'm going to say is that there is sensual tension and it is written exceptionally well. Let's all collectively thank Roanhorse for this and higher our standards to match that energy. 🍯🛁

☀ This book will stick with you long after the cliffhanger and will have you wanting needing the next book immediately. Seriously - it will live in your mind rent-free. It's one of my most favorite books this year, or of all time. Right up there with Felix Ever After, The Poppy War and Raybearer.

☀ Though it's an adult fantasy, it'll also appeal to fans of YA as well (though heed trigger warnings as there are dark and graphic themes).

Tropes / Themes

☽ Dark fantasy
☽ Celestial prophecy
☽ Forbidden magic
☽ Morally grey character
☽ Mystical quest
☽ Rivalries
☽ Slow burn romance
☽ Sensual tension
☽ Revenge plot
☽ Abusive parent(s)


⚓ Nonbinary MC (xe/xir) + SCs
⚓ Bisexual (possibly pansexual) MC
⚓ Disabled MCs + SCs
⚓ Trans SC
⚓ Past nb/f relationship
⚓ Indigenous author (Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo + Black)
⚓ Indigenous America's, Mayan, Incan, Aztec, Tewan, Cahokia, ancestral Puebloans, and Polynesian cultural influences

Content/Trigger Warnings

➤ Violence
➤ Alcohol use
➤ Mass murder
➤ Death
➤ Trauma
➤ Mentions of slavery
➤ Homophobia
➤ Mentions of human sacrifice
➤ Cults + cult rituals
➤ Mention of sexual abuse
➤ Child abuse/abusive parent
➤ Gore

black sun rebecca roanhorse aesthetic

"The costliest mistake one can make is to underestimate one’s opponent through low expectations."

--Rebecca Roanhorse, Black Sun

"Life is a series of false hopes. We all have misplaced hopes until we learn better. I did."

--Rebecca Roanhorse, Black Sun

"Violence should only be used in defense, and even then, it corrupts. If you must kill your enemy, do it quickly and be done. To linger only invites humiliation of both the victim and the self, and there is no honor there."

--Rebecca Roanhorse, Black Sun

"If your stories are of the glory of war, then I will know you value power. If your stories are of kinship, then I know you value relationship. If your stories are of many children, I know you value legacy. But if your stories are of adaptation and survival, of long memory and revenge, then I will know you are a Crow like me."

--Rebecca Roanhorse, Black Sun

"Usually," Xiala said carefully, "when someone describes a man as harmless, he ends up being a villain."

--Rebecca Roanhorse, Black Sun

"The sea herself," she said. "I am her daughter, and when I'm with my mother"--she exhaled gustily--"nobody fucks with her children."

--Rebecca Roanhorse, Black Sun

[Quotes are from an unedited advanced review copy and is subject to change in the final publication]

Rebecca Roanhorse is a NYTimes bestselling and Nebula, Hugo and Locus Award-winning speculative fiction writer and the recipient of the 2018 Astounding (Campbell) Award for Best New Writer. 

Her novel Trail of Lightning (Book 1 in the Sixth World Series) won the Locus Award for Best First Novel and was a Nebula, Hugo and World Fantasy Finalist. It was also selected as an Amazon, B&N, Library Journal, and NPR Best Books of 2018, among others. Storm of Locusts (Book 2 in the Sixth World Series) was a Locus Award Finalist and was longlisted for the Hugo Award. It also received starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly and Booklist, and was named an Amazon, Powell’s, and Audible Best of 2019. Her novel, Resistance Reborn, is part of Star Wars: Journey to The Rise of Skywalker and a USA Today and NYTimes bestseller. Her middle grade novel Race to the Sun for the Rick Riordan Present’s imprint was a NYTimes Bestseller and received a starred review from Kirkus. Her next novel, Black Sun, has received starred reviews from Kirkus, Publisher’s Weekly, and Library Journal and comes out on Oct 13, 2020. 

She lives in Northern New Mexico with her husband, daughter, and pup. She drinks a lot of black coffee.

Let's chat! Is Black Sun on your TBR?
Have you read it yet? I'm dying to know your thoughts!

Post a Comment

empty kingdom. Design by Berenica Designs.