“There is power in dreams,” She told him. “Harness it and therein lies magic. But only virtuous men may wield it.”In The Killing Moon, N.K. Jemisin creates a wonderful world (similar to ancient Egypt, but Jemisin writes that she was influenced by a lot of cultures - the Gatherers reminded me of ninjas, for example) with priests, reapers, healers - an organized religion, a society where gender equality takes a whole new meaning, and a world of intrigue and politics where you just can't pick a side. Everyone is right. Everyone is wrong. There's no good vs. evil, there's only the greater good, or the lesser evil.What I liked the most about The Killing Moon is the mythology, all the magic, everything is worked out to the very last detail and not confusing at all. The hierarchy within the Hananjan faith was really interesting to read about, and the very first scene with Ehiru (of whom I thought as a ninja priest) in the book just makes you want to know more about Hananja. I loved the way she explained how the whole process of soul gathering works, I could see it right before my eyes.The book follows characters from both Gujaareen and Kisuati sides, and this is why it's really hard to pick the right one. Everyone has good and logical reasons for what they are doing, but at the same time, they might be considered less than noble. Nothing is black and white, but there are a million shades of gray.The reason I'm not explaining the plot is because I will probably fail at it. It's complicated and you need to read it to understand it.There's no prominent romance in this book - although there is a very subtle one - you will notice the relationship between Ehiru and Nijiri is just begging to be more than it is, but there are obstacles. For what it's worth, I got the impression that there is no such thing as sexual orientation in Jemisin's books (these or the Inheritance trilogy). I really liked that.Now, what really makes this book is her writing. It is so different than anything I've ever read - I felt this way about her other books I've read, but I felt this book is much stronger writing-wise. She takes her time to lead you into this world she creates and you feel like you're right there with the characters, the language, the food, the places you visit and finally, the people you see in the book.The first chapter - the story of the Sun and the Moons, I liked it - a lot!I know some have complained about characterization... I thought it was good enough. Honestly, the book is on the long-ish side, but I felt it was just too short to tell this story and have every aspect of it be perfect. Still, each character was different in their own way - Sunandi, the politician, Nijiri, a bit of a rebel, and Ehiru, who has a great sense of calm composure and serenity about him despite everything going on.The action sequences were great, but there weren't many of them. Then again, I felt that maybe this was intentional considering the whole tone of the book is somewhat peaceful (although you can also feel that peace is actually artificial and things aren't what they seem - within Hananja, Gujaareh or Kisua.)Another thing, even though the book is a first in a two-book series, there is no cliffhanger in the end. It can very well work as a standalone, and you don't have to worry that it will make you throw your book/reader across the room.Either way, the books were released one after the other within a month, so you don't have to wait for the second.It is a clean read, although if I remember correctly, there are is a scene where sex was implied.Overall, I really enjoyed the first book in this series and I'd like to think people will read it despite the lack of true romance in it. I'm first and foremost a romance reader, but I liked this so much it's one of my favorite books I've read. And just look at that amazing cover.