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Search tags: The-Stormlight-Archive
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review 2018-02-03 17:05
A marathon fantasy epic
The Way of Kings - Brandon Sanderson

This is the first of a projected ten book epic fantasy series by Sanderson. I'd been holding off on starting it because I wanted him to get a few more books under his belt. He has now released book three, Oathbringer, and my husband finished his massive listen of the entire Wheel of Time series and was looking for a new fantasy listen to keep him occupied while he remodels our master bathroom, closet & bedroom, so I bought the audiobook to go along with the print book and decided to listen along with him while I stitched/quilted.

 

It did not turn out to be a great listen for me - I find that I struggle with listening to extremely long books, and I often end up switching to the print format because I can move so much more quickly through the story. That's exactly what happened here - I switched out the listen for a reread of Agatha's The ABC Murders, and read this one on my kindle fire.

 

This is an epic fantasy, with all of the tropes and tells that sort of book requires. There's world-building! There's magic! There's heroes being subjected to terrible things! 

 

I've read a lot of Sanderson - his entire Mistborn series (both his first trilogy and the second series, which has more of an "old west" vibe) and his YA series The Reckoners, starring David Charleston, killer of epics and purveyor of misplaced metaphors. I would note, just as an aside, that The Reckoners is a family favorite - my husband, my 21 year old daughter and my 17 year old son all found it to be great fun. I find his books to be competently written and well-paced. This is also true of The Way of Kings

 

He's written an interesting world, with mostly likeable characters. One of his strengths is his ability to build a world without engaging in a lot of info-dumping, which makes jumping into a new series a bracing experience. You just have to take it all in and wait for it to come together.

 

I did jump into Words of Radiance, which is book 2, which I have also finished. Post to follow.

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review 2017-12-07 00:43
Words of Radiance (The Stormlight Archive #2)
Words of Radiance (Stormlight Archive, The) - Brandon Sanderson

The world of Roshar thought it had survived its great cataclysm four millennia ago, but days are slowly counting down for when the next Desolation begins.  Brandon Sanderson’s epic fantasy series’ second installment, World of Radiance, brings numerous characters together in the middle of the Shattered Plains as Roshar faces the beginning of the apocalypse as well the rebirth of it’s great heroic warriors that fought to save life.

 

Although the four main characters are once again front and center, but unlike the previous The Way of Kings it is Shallan Davar who dominates the majority of the book’s narrative either through her own point-of-view, flashbacks, or through the eyes of other major characters.  Shallan and Jasnah are headed to the Shattered Plains by ship when it is attacked, Jasnah murdered, and Shallan dissolves the ship to save the crew and herself using her recently discovered Radiant abilities.  Shallan continues to learn her new abilities as she travels through the Frostlands towards the Shattered Plain meeting several interesting people including Kaladin and the ringleader of Jasnah’s killers then takes her place as the agent of the group that killed her to learn what they know of the things Jasnah has been studying.  Once at the warcamps, Shallan juggles multiple balls that eventually leads her out into the Plains at a critical moment to save the Atheli army.

 

Kaladin, Dalinar, and Adolin take up the vast majority of the rest of the book, essentially interacting a lot with one another or with Shallan once she gets to the camps.  Kaladin’s is the major secondary arc of the book as he transforms the bridge crews into a guard force to protect Dalinar and his family while also continuing to deal with his issues with lighteyes and the responsibilities of his Radiant powers.  Using his new position as Highprince of War, Dalinar along with Adolin attempt to combat the political intrigue of Sadeas and attempt to end the war either through peace or crushing the Parshendi in battle.  Interlaced throughout the book are interludes that were dominated by the Parshendi general Eshonai and the Assasin in White, Szeth, whose own arcs help give an epic feel to the overall story while adding to the book’s main narrative flow.

 

While the length of The Way of Kings and the repetitive descriptions during scenes were my main complaint, Sanderson’s Words of Radiance were and wasn’t the same.  The length of the second book is something to give pause (1300+ pages), the repetitive descriptions during the same scenes were cut out and narrative replaced it.  Honestly, with more narrative then descriptions the length of the book becomes less noticeable especially once you’re a quarter of the way through the book but it’s always in the back of your mind.

 

Overall Words of Radiance is a very good book, building upon and improving over its predecessor and setting up anticipating for the read to see where Brandon Sanderson is going to take this series next.

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review 2017-11-28 00:28
Edgedancer, Stormlight Archive 2.5, by Brandon Sanderson
Edgedancer: From the Stormlight Archive - Brandon Sanderson

I've loved Sanderson's Stormlight Archive from the beginning, so when I heard there was going to be a bonus novella to the series I was excited. I usually don't appreciate sidebars to my epics, but I felt like I could trust Sanderson not to waste my time.

Edgedancer is not a waste of time. Surprisingly, it's required. Which has its own problems, but I was planning on reading it anyway so no harm done. A real highlight of Words of Radiance was the introduction of Lift, the cheerfully ignorant 'slick' thief. Edgedancer follows Lift across the continent and on an adventure with has a surprising impact on the rest of the series.

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text 2017-03-20 17:20
Notice: Free Download for The Way of Kings
The Way of Kings (Stormlight Archive, The) - Brandon Sanderson

To my fantasy reading friends, Tor.com is offering a free download of Brandon Sanderson's The Way of Kings on March 23 & 24. This is the first book in his Stormlight Archives series - the third book, Oathbringer, is scheduled for release November 14!

 

Grab the free download here!

 

And enjoy!

 

 

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review 2016-08-04 18:07
Words of Radiance (Stormlight Archive, The) - Brandon Sanderson

This was very much my cup of tea. Strong world building where despite the presence of magic there seemed an almost science fiction tint to it all, where you could see a scientific rationale. Stronger in that regard than say GRR Martin's Song of Fire and Ice, but not as striking as in Pullman's His Dark Materials. As with GRR Martin this is rather epic in both geographic scope and number of characters, and written in a third person limited rotating point of view. Sanderson so far doesn't seem quite as ruthless to his characters, but you feel insecure enough at least to feel considerable suspense. And I cared about his characters, Kaladin and Shallan--and both grow in this book in unexpected ways both internal and external. There's a moral complexity here where characters don't fall too neatly into good versus evil. There are strong female characters that don't fall into stereotypes and some interesting twists on the usual gender roles. Despite its length though it's tighter than Martin's book. There's no flab and it all seems like it's going somewhere. I feel this is even stronger than the opening book in the trilogy. My only gripe is now it's over, the third book isn't published yet and I'll have to wait. I haven't read his more famous Mistborn series--yet. But I may have a new favorite author.

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