• The Fifth Season

  • The Broken Earth, Book 1
  • By: N. K. Jemisin
  • Narrated by: Robin Miles
  • Length: 15 hrs and 27 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (746 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The Fifth Season: Booktrack Edition adds an immersive musical soundtrack to your audiobook listening experience!

At the end of the world, a woman must hide her secret power and find her kidnapped daughter in this "intricate and extraordinary" (The New York Times) Hugo Award-winning novel of power, oppression, and revolution.

This is the way the world ends...for the last time.

It starts with the great red rift across the heart of the world's sole continent, spewing ash that blots out the sun. It starts with death, with a murdered son and a missing daughter. It starts with betrayal, and long dormant wounds rising up to fester.

This is the Stillness, a land long familiar with catastrophe, where the power of the earth is wielded as a weapon. And where there is no mercy.

Listen to the first book in the critically acclaimed, three-time Hugo award-winning trilogy by NYT best-selling author N. K. Jemisin.

Booktrack is an immersive format that pairs traditional audiobook narration to complementary music. The tempo and rhythm of the score are in perfect harmony with the action and characters throughout the audiobook. Gently playing in the background, the music never overpowers or distracts from the narration, so listeners can enjoy every minute. When you purchase this Booktrack edition, you receive the exact narration as the traditional audiobook available, with the addition of music throughout.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2015 N. K. Jemisin (P)2019 Orbit

Critic Reviews

"With every new work, Jemisin's ability to build worlds and break hearts only grows." (Kirkus starred review)

"The Fifth Season is a powerful, epic novel of discovery, pain, and heartbreak.... It is a novel that demands much of its readers; it rewards them aplenty and is one of those novels that becomes more powerful after deep consideration and subsequent readings." (SFF World)

"A must-buy...breaks uncharted ground." (Library Journal starred review)

Featured Article: The Best Fantasy Audiobook Series


There is nothing like a great fantasy series, one that invites you to bring yourself into an inventive world unlike our own. And a masterful fantasy audiobook can further enhance that feeling, taking an engaging reading experience and amping it up to the realm of total immersion. Marked by brilliant narration and perfect character voices, a stellar audiobook series takes an already amazing fantasy saga and transforms it into an unforgettable adventure. If you’re looking for the best fantasy book series to listen to, these titles are a great place to start.

What listeners say about The Fifth Season

Average Customer Ratings
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I would give this less than one star if I could.

This was a joyless, nihilistic plod with patchy world building. The reader over enunciates or over emphasizes certain words in an off-putting way. I'm extremely disappointed because I'd heard great things about this book. More and more, I cannot trust professional reviewers.

37 people found this helpful

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Well Crafted Fantasy Worth Savoring

This is one of the best books that I've read in a long time. This is not your typical run-of-the-mill fantasy adventure story; the narrative is slow and character-driven with masterful worldbuilding slowly and meticulously unveiled. The fantasy world that the author has created is interesting and fiercely original.

This is not for everyone though; the author withholds a lot of important information up front and the story itself takes it's time. If you're the kind of reader that doesn't enjoy a lot of ambiguity, and hate not really knowing what's going on for chapters on end - you are going to find this book very frustrating. It is best when savored and read with trust that everything will make sense at the end and to just soak in the beautiful writing and masterful narration. Overall, if you're a Sci-Fi / Fantasy fan and having been looking for something new and unique, this book is going to be one you make all your friends read so you can talk about it.

25 people found this helpful

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Self indulgent and painful!

Jumping from third person to second person, and all in present tense, this book appears to have won accolades in the same way a modernist painting is considered "ground breaking art" by only the most "sophisticated". I guess I'm not that sophisticated... so I'll say it: the emperor has no clothes - this is a horrible book. You have been warned.

24 people found this helpful

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Bad Narrator, mediocre book

This was so disappointing! There are lots of great ideas here, but no character development, just people being nasty to each other. The only emotion anyone has is anger, whether appropriate or not for the situation. For a supposedly talented and clever person, our heroine(s) is amazingly blind, not noticing the most obvious things about the "people" around her. Like, that one is made of stone. Duh.
The reader seems to be able to express anger and sarcasm, but nothing else. For the first hour or so I thought she was doing a pretty good job, but gradually became very tired of her limited range. Why can't Audible hire better readers?

15 people found this helpful

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Amazing story, well told.

This was NOT the book I expected. Not in the least. The characters are vibrant, and have wonderfully developed facets slowly draw forth in the telling of the story.

I highly recommend this book.

12 people found this helpful

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Absolutely incredible

A masterpiece of world building and storytelling. So many can get lost in world building and ignore characters or vice versa. This builds deep characters and a deep world at the same time.

12 people found this helpful

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Meh, too melodramatic for me.

I thought the world was unique and interesting but I just didn't like any of the characters. It was ok just no emotional attachment to any of the characters. Live/die/get caught didn't really matter to me only unlocking the mysteries of the world. Over hyped in my opinion.

8 people found this helpful

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You keep waiting for the payoff... there isn’t

Book is just a mess of not so subtle messages that is pushed to the reader over and over again. A Vulgar story that is mediocre at best.

6 people found this helpful

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Slightly odd way of storytelling

The story was amazing with two odd twists, and leaves a great cliff hanger. I would be upset if there weren't already more books out.
I only noticed one mistake from the narrator, of the whole audiobook, a mispronunciation of one word.

Not really a story for kids in the slightest bit, and plenty of allusion within it. If you aren't paying any attention, you will miss a lot.

5 people found this helpful

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Wanted to like it, ruined by the LGBT agenda.

Story has a fun world concept and interesting idea on earthly geology mixed with spiritual/magical lore. Unfortunately, the author injects a lot of unneeded LGBT into the characters and over sexualizes them. Doesn't seem to be any new material out there without this being pushed on us all the time...sad.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Luke Cadman
  • 09-23-21

Annoying sound effects

Ruined by annoying background sound effects. Not sure whose idea that was but it was a bad one!

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Profile Image for Monica Loureiro
  • Monica Loureiro
  • 03-31-21

I am totally amazed by this book!

everything was good! I was following the story with all my attention, in the final chapters I would even cease what I was doing (leaving one weird adult staring into nothing in the middle of the living room for minutes on end) to listen carefully and absorb all the emotions. the narrator? amazing! the small changes in her voice clued me in on what character I was listening, and they were so small changes...
To be clear, I'm not in a good mood after this book. the end is as traumatic as the begining, I'm hoping the next books can relieve this stress!

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  • A Friend
  • 07-07-20

Unexpectedly great

Saw that this series had won the hugo award a bunch so thought I'd give it a try, I'd thought it was more fantasy that scifi, but its somewhere I'm the steampunky crossovers area really. Got gripped really quickly and have ended up smashing the whole thing in 3 days! Shame as I had a lot of work I should have been finishing! This version has accompanying music which is a great addition and makes it very immersive. The story is great and there are some great twists. There's a lot of made up terms in the fantasy style, but the author does well to drop them all in so that you know exactly what they mean when you need too, with very little need for boring exposition. Huge fan, will definitely be getting the rest of the series

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  • Al_ D
  • 02-19-20

Book track is amazing

this is a wonderful book, and wonderfully narrated and book track still manages to make it about 100 times better. I find it so much more gripping and easier to focus on. please make more 💙💜❤️

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  • Mordsith
  • 04-06-21

I like it.

I liked it tho it was for me hard to get into at time's and time's I could not put it down. I found listing to it was alot easier for me.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-15-20

Hooked

It took me a chapter or two to get into this story, but man, did l get hooked. Loved it, would recommend.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 07-29-20

wow you can really narrate

yes i loved it. completely different from anything I've read. set on post apocalyptic earth it's unlike any other world I know. the different races, the abilities, the story! and the psychological insight into each character along the way, amazing. even the point of view puts you right in there! excellent narrating plus music and sfx that just go!! you must read it