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review 2017-01-23 04:24
I took a long time getting around to this book. Why did it take so long?
Steelheart - Brandon Sanderson
"There are things greater than the Epics, I thought. There is life and love, and nature herself.
Steelheart strode toward me.
Where there are villains, there will be heroes. My father’s voice. Just wait. They will come.
Steelheart raised a glowing hand.
Sometimes, son, you have to help the heroes along… .
And suddenly, I knew.
An awareness opened my mind, like the burning radiance of the sun itself. I knew. I understood.
—  SteelheartBrandon Sanderson
 
This is my review. LOL
 
I can say this...Brandon Sanderson has yet to disappoint me. Even if I think I may not like it...I end up liking it.
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review 2016-12-29 21:12
My thoughts on steelheart
Steelheart - MacLeod Andrews,Brandon Sanderson

when I first started reading this book I didn't think I was going to like it as well as what my Husband did I thought this is just another book that he liked that I'm not going to or will have to DNF like one other book I have in the past after he read it, Boy was I wrong on that one I loved this book the action in it the relationships between everyone I stayed up all night to finish this book witch never happens with me. at the end I was having an anxiety attack although I suffer with them alot now so it might have had nothing to do with the book not the best book I have read this year but a close 2nd!!!

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review 2016-09-15 15:05
#CBR8 Book 98: Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson
Steelheart - MacLeod Andrews,Brandon Sanderson

Because it's been nearly a month since I finished this book (yay, backlogs!) and because the blurb does a good job of summing up the story, I'm going to resort to Goodreads:

Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics. But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came a desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his will.

Nobody fights the Epics...nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them.  

And David wants in. He wants Steelheart - the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David's father. For years, like the Reckoners, David has been studying, and planning - and he has something they need. Not an object, but an experience.

He's seen Steelheart bleed. And he wants revenge. 

The book starts shortly after the appearance of Calamity, when Epics are still are a new thing. David and his father are at a bank, trying to get a loan, when a minor epic attacks, starting to kill patrons and guards, mainly because he can. David's father still believes some of the Epics will take on the roles of superheroes, so when Steelheart arrives and stops the murdering, bank-robbing Epic, he is initially relieved. Until it turns out Steelheart is just there to enforce his new claim on Chicago and wipe out any rival claims. David's father is killed in the ensuing confrontation, and Steelheart makes sure to wipe out anyone who may have witnessed the fact that he was grazed by a bullet and actually injured. David manages to escape though, and realises what a big deal the seemingly minor injury is, when Steelheart doesn't just sink the bank into the ground, but kills any survivors or even rescue workers responding to the crisis.

About a decade later, Chicago is Newcago, a city turned entirely to steel by Steelheart. It ruled by a merciless and seemingly invulnerable Steelheart and his closest advisers, Nightwielder, who keeps the city in constant darkness (no sunlight ever); Conflux, who runs the security forces and provides power to the city, as well as the mysterious Firefight. There are minor Epics who help his reign of terror. Most people live in the steel catacombs under the city and keep their noses to the ground. Any attempts at civil disobedience is crushed by Conflux's efficient enforcers.

David is nearly eighteen, and has devoted spare moment of his life since his father died to researching various Epics, trying to ascertain their unique weaknesses (despite their sometimes astounding powers, all Epics also have one or two fatal weaknesses). He has also been tracking rogue resistance group the Reckoners, who are currently in Newcago. David wants to join their ranks and he wants them to stop just targeting minor Epics, which doesn't actually have that much effect. He wants revenge on Steelheart, and there is no way he's going achieve it on his own.

The gang of Reckoners that David meets, a small cell consisting of the Professor, research whizz Tia, muscle Cody and Abraham and point woman Megan, are initially reluctant to let him join their ranks, even when he proves his bravery while helping them on a mission. Once Tia sees his many notebooks with years worth of research on the various Epics, she warms to him and despite Megan's distrust, David is recruited into the gang. David has a massive crush on Megan, and can't entirely understand why she's so hostile towards him. Eventually, he figures out that she's worried about the consequences to the people of Newcago if the Reckoners and David actually successfully take out Steelheart. The power vacuum that would be created could lead to complete chaos. Maybe the evil they know is better than the chaos they don't?

Brandon Sanderson is ridiculously prolific. Unlike most writers of epic fantasy, he seems able to juggle multiple series at the same time, and seems to publish at least one, if not several books a year. As well as several highly regarded epic fantasy novels (some of which are stand-alone, a rarity among the genre), he's written several things for young adults, such as The Reckoners trilogy, which takes on epic supervillains and the people who oppose them in a creative twist on near-future dystopias.

Steelheart is a quick and entertaining read. It took me a while to get through, but only because I was listening to it in audio. Once the story really got going, I found myself going for longer walks and occasionally even just listening to it at home so I could get more enjoyment faster. Macleod Andrews reads the book very well.

David is an engaging, if dorky protagonist. He really is defined by his all-consuming obsession with revenge on Steelheart, an event he doesn't necessarily believe he'll survive. Several of the other characters mention that he needs to find other things to live for and care about, just on the off chance that they survive the dangerous mission. He also makes absolutely atrocious metaphors, and is deeply sensitive to being called on his nerdy tendencies.

The members of the Reckoners aren't exactly massively fleshed out, and more given one or two defining character traits. Tia is smart and bookish, and has a Cola-addiction (I can relate). The Professor is a genius inventor, but withdrawn, gruff and cranky. Abraham is large, French-Canadian and quite philosophical. Cody is really annoying and keeps making up preposterous stories alluding to his seemingly ever-changing ancestry. He's from the South, but of Scottish ancestry, but also keeps dragging in Irish and Australian. He was probably my least favourite character.

Megan is the youngest Reckoner, before David joins. She's a crack shot, witty, pretty and at least initially teases David good-humouredly. She doesn't like that he manages to convince the other, normally risk-averse Reckoners to go along with his plan, though, and it helps David understand her further when she finally explains her misgivings. Not entirely sure if she was worth being the recipient of David's mega-crush, but she also seems to be the first girl he's really allowed himself to notice. Being obsessed with Epic research and revenge plans will probably cut your potential flirting and dating time considerably.

It may be because this book is aimed at a YA audience, but I found that Sanderson's normally intricate plotting wasn't as tight as it tends to be. I'd figured out several of the big "twists" before they were revealed, which is not something that normally happens in his books. It's a fun, action-packed little adventure story, though, and I've already secured the second book in audio as well, to listen to a bit later in the year.

Judging a book by its cover: I'm thinking the cover is supposed to show David, standing in the steel-covered ruins of Newcago. The various shades of grey on the cover are a nice touch, as are the torn edges of the steel in the foreground. It's not a super exciting cover, but it's not awful either.

Source: kingmagu.blogspot.no/2016/09/cbr8-book-98-steelheart-by-brandon.html
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text 2016-08-08 20:53
The Reckoners by Brandon Sanderson
Steelheart - Brandon Sanderson
Firefight - Brandon Sanderson
Calamity (The Reckoners) - Brandon Sanderson

I've been trying to get my husband to read more. When we met, he was a huge fan of epic fantasy - Robert Jordan, Stephen Donaldson, David Eddings, etc. At some point, he basically stopped reading. Maybe because I was reading enough for both of us?

 

Anyway, I originally read an ARC of Steelheart pre-release and I really liked it. But, the next one in the trilogy didn't come out for a year or so, so by the time Firefight was published, it got put onto that every growing pile of "books I really want to read someday," but I figured I would wait until the end of the series. Then that came, and went, and I didn't get around to it.

 

And then my husband discovered audiobooks. He read a couple of Michael Connelly police procedurals, but was interested in trying something in modern fantasy. I had him read The Aeronaut's Windlass first and once he finished that one, I had picked up a copy of the Steelheart audiobook during a sale so I suggested he give that a go. 

 

He devoured it, and then immediately listened to Firefight, and then moved on to Calamity. In order to not be left behind, because, no, he shall not pass (me, when it comes to books), I decided to buy the kindle editions and read them. At the same time, my daughter got hooked. So, this weekend she and I finished The Reckoners.

 

What a tremendously fun series. Brandon Sanderson's brain is so full of ideas and set pieces and interesting and cool invented locations. Babilar - what used to be New York, submerged by a water epic, where everyone lives in the top few floors of sky scrapers, surrounded by magically growing fruit and glowing spray paint. Atlanta, a mobile city made of ever renewing salt. Where do these things come from, Mr. Sanderson?

 

And the Epics were, really, not to coin a phrase or anything, epic. They got cooler and cooler and more and more unique until the end. 

 

This series strides the line between urban and superhero fantasy. It is a delightful, self-contained little series (between the three books, it's only 1205 pages, not much longer than a single book from his Stormlight Archives) that fully develops a world. It would make an amazing trilogy of movies - someone, please, adapt these for the big screen. Now I just need to figure out a way to get my son to read these - he would love them!

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review 2016-07-06 00:00
Steelheart
Steelheart - Brandon Sanderson I wouldn't make much of a supervillain. My weakness is chocolate. And quality whiskey. And a beautiful guitar. And a great novel. And.... this would make a long list of things to kill me with.

Steelheart is the first book in the Reckoners series by Brandon Sanderson. David was only a child when the Epics (supervillains) appeared. He also has a secret: he saw the greatest of the Epics bleed. The supposedly invincible and invulnerable Steelheart is now the Dictator of Newcago and David wants to avenge his father's death at the hands of Steelheart.

After enjoying the Mistborn series I have been trying other Sanderson book series, expecting more great novels from him. I struck out with The Way of Kings, which could best be described as using 100 words when 10 would suffice, but Steelheart promises an exciting series.

Leaving aside the (acknowledged) improbable superpowers and raised middle finger to physics, the novel manages to be engaging and intriguing. In this David versus Goliaths tale there is plenty of suspense and fear that the heroes may not triumph. The series is intended as a Young Adult adventure, but YA is the new A must read, so don't be put off by that.

Can't wait to read the rest of the series and see how the handwavium works.
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