The Splinter in the Sky

A Space Opera | Kemi Ashing-Giwa

About the Book

  • A USA Today bestseller!
  • 2024 Compton Crook Award Nominees (best first novel)

A diverse, exciting debut space opera about a young tea expert who is taken as a political prisoner and recruited to spy on government officials—a role that may empower her to win back her nation’s independence—perfect for fans of N.K. Jemisin and Nnedi Okorafor. 

The dust may have just settled in the failed war of conquest between the Holy Vaalbaran Empire and the Ominirish Republic, but the last Emperor’s surrender means little to a lowly scribe like Enitan. All she wants is to quit her day job and expand her fledgling tea business. But when her lover is assassinated and her sibling is abducted by Imperial soldiers, Enitan abandons her idyllic plans and weaves her tea tray up through the heart of the Vaalbaran capital. There, she will learn just how far she is willing to go to exact vengeance, free her sibling, and perhaps even secure her homeland’s freedom.

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This book is also available on audiobook from the following online booksellers:

Narrator: Soneela Nankani
Format: Unabridged
Runtime: 13 hours and 56 minutes


“The Splinter in the Sky is an engrossing novel that captures, in impressive prose, the deep discomfort of living under occupation. Kemi Ashing-Giwa’s present-tense writing pulls readers deep into Enitan’s rich inner life, behind the mask she is forced to wear in order to survive.” — Book Page

“The Vaalbarans’ personal and political oppression of the Korikese calls to mind European conquests across the Americas, Africa, Asia, and Oceania… A strong debut with soft SF elements offering major crossover appeal for fantasy aficionados.”
Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

“A breathtaking space opera debut… Delving into serious sociopolitical matters without ever losing the shine of hope, this tense adventure packs a punch.”
Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

“Highly recommended for fans of N. K. Jemisin’s Inheritance trilogy and Rebecca Roanhorse’s Between Earth and Sky series.”
Booklist, Starred Review

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The Details

Published: July 11, 2023
Publisher: Gallery / Saga Press
Pages: 320
Formats: EbookHardcover
ISBN-13: 978-1668008478

Genres & Tropes
Science fiction, Colonization Science Fiction, Galactic Empire Science Fiction, Space Opera