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Review: The Hero of Ages, Brandon Sanderson

A year after the events in The Well of Ascension, the world is ending.  Vin has accidentally released a hidden evil into the world, one that seems impossible to fight.  Their only hope is to follow the Lord Ruler’s instructions and trust that he has the answer, but as things get increasingly worse, Vin and Elend get desperate in their attempts to thwart this new evil as this trilogy ends in an unexpected crescendo.

I’ve been waiting months for this book.  I read and loved The Well of Ascension way back in January; I bought it in hardcover because I didn’t want to wait.  Without question, Brandon Sanderson is the best new fantasy writer that I have read.  He creates endearing, believable characters (I adore Vin), places them in a complex and unusual fantasy world, and has one of the most logical but still really awesome magical systems that I’ve ever come across.  And he can certainly write.  The story here is good and unpredictable.  It feels like they must have the answers, and sometimes I could see them coming, but I could never work out what was going to happen next.  The ending was similarly unexpected.  I love how he picks up many threads from the beginning of the trilogy and weaves them in here.  I can’t wait to read all three in sequence to see what I’ve missed.  I really enjoyed reading this book, as it’s over 550 pages and I read it in about two days.  I had to know what happened.  At the same time, I’m a bit sad that it’s over, but certainly looking forward to more from Sanderson.

That said, I cannot deny that I did have one problem with it.  A portion of the book is taken up with religious questions, mainly Sazed’s sections, and Sanderson draws conclusions in the book that I just can’t agree with.  I’m not a person of faith and I don’t think faith is necessary to be happy; it does bother me that it’s implied here.  Not only that, but these parts of the book move more slowly than the rest.  I did not want to get back to Sazed and his musings.  I think this is a personal preference issue; perhaps if I was still religious it wouldn’t bother me.

Obviously, I still loved the rest of the book.  I thought about Vin and Elend while I was away from it and read it instead of doing my assignments.  I’m waiting to get in the same country as the first two so I can reread them.  As I said, there’s no denying that Sanderson has ridiculous amounts of potential and I can’t wait to see what he writes next.  I just hope he keeps the slow religious musings out of it next time.  This is definitely a series you shouldn’t miss if you enjoy fantasy.

Buy this book on Amazon. You can also visit Brandon’s website, which is really awesome, as it has his blog and annotations for the first two Mistborn books as well as sample chapters.  His tour schedule is up there as well.

Many, many thanks to Dot Lin at Tor for providing me this book and to Brandon Sanderson for helping me get a copy.  I will be holding a giveaway as soon as I have my second one!

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2 comments to Review: The Hero of Ages, Brandon Sanderson

  • I’ve heard others mention the religious themes too; I’m a little leery of them, but not enough that I’m no longer looking forward to the book. I plan to reread the first two as soon as this one comes in for me at the library. It’s been well over a year since I read the first one, and I want to make sure all the details are fresh in my mind.

  • I agree that Sazed’s sections were the weakest of the book. It generally doesn’t bother me if an author’s religious beliefs sneak into a book, but in this case it just felt incredibly heavy-handed and not up to Sanderson’s usual level of writing.