I'm the managing editor of the Fantasy Literature blog. Life's too short to read bad books!
The Well of Ascension begins about a year after the events that occurred at the end of Mistborn. The novel takes a while to get going and generally has less excitement to offer than its predecessor. After all, we're now mostly familiar with the world of The Final Empire and we understand the rules of the unique magic systems that rely on the burning of metals for powers and the storing of attributes such as strength, age, and eye-sight into metals. The loss of Kelsior, the most dynamic of Sanderson's characters, creates a void not only in the other characters' lives, but in this book as well.
The pace is slow in the beginning, but things finally take off when we're introduced to Zane, an unbalanced Mistborn who can't decide whose side he's on (and who may or may not be insane), and when we find out that there's an unknown kandra spy in the palace. I was fascinated by the kandra ??? creatures who can ingest a corpse and impersonate the person or animal whose body it has eaten. Not only was that really cool, but it gave the opportunity for some quirky humor. (The humor in this novel is very sparse but very funny.)
Besides the kandra, Mr. Sanderson has created some other intriguing creatures: the koloss who never stop growing even when their skin can no longer stretch and who think of themselves as human, the inquisitors who have metal spikes through their brains and bodies (we don't know the purpose of these spikes yet). This is my favorite aspect of this series ??? Mr. Sanderson's wonderful imagination.
The audiobook, read by Michael Kramer, is a treat to listen to.
The Well of Ascension answers a lot of questions which we were left wondering about after Mistborn, but there are just as many questions still left. I have no doubt that all will be made clear in The Hero of Ages (which I am already listening to).
I gave this book 4 stars, it really only deserved 3, but the 4th is a carry over because I liked the first book so much. I think Brandon Sanderson (who did such an amazing job with 'The Gathering Storm' that I needed to read some of his other work) had a fantastic ending in mind from the very beginning, and just filled the book full of fluff to get there.
Seriously, the first 3/4 of the book could be summarized like this. Elend is having a hard time keeping control of Luthadel. Vin is trying to protect him. And that's it, for 3/4 of the book. However, I still enjoyed reading about these characters that were created in the first book, and the sub-plot of Marsh at the end get's pretty amazing. I'm looking forward to see how that all plays out in the third book.
The second Mistborn book moves slower than the first, but it really allows for a ton of character development and a deeper understanding of the Mistborn world. You see the characters struggle; these books do not have clear cut "good" and "bad" but rather show the characters as real people struggling with conflicting emotions, duties, wants, etc. Excellent read! Couldn't put my iPod down. Kramer is outstanding as with the first book. Can't wait to "read" the next one!
Favorite books are Mystery & Thrillers followed close by SciFi & Fantasy.
Excellent reading. It's impossible to find a place to stop.
Amazing, more action than the first book, and so much more of the story unravels to the reader in an incredible manner. The author is patient and seemingly insignificant characters and events in Book 1 take on relevance with so many suprises, excellent read! loved!
This series is great! I really have enjoyed it and Michael Kramer did a great job reading it. This book has a good twist at the end too.
Brandon Sanderson does any amazing job blending deep characters with an epic story where the twists and turns keep you from knowing where the story is going. He is a fantastic storyteller and recommend this book to anyone who loves epic fantasy.
This story keeps you guessing what power will do to a person. In the quest for power many people will suffer. Their story is heart wrenching. A true hero will deny that they are a hero. They will do everything in their power to help their loved ones.