I am a 27 year old nurse pursuing a nurse practitioner degree. My favorite book genres are: fantasy, science fiction, medicine and sociology
I listened to this immediately after reading all the Song of Ice and Fire books, and my initial impressions were colored by how much I enjoyed Song of Ice and Fire. The Way of Kings is much less graphically sexual, the violence is not as graphic, there is nowhere near as much cursing. Initially, it felt far less colorful and robust due to the stark contrast between the two series. However, before I knew it, I found myself deeply engrossed in Sanderson's universe and the storyline won me over.
Kaladin is a very sympathetic hero, even though his virtuous selfless nature seemed unrealistic. I wanted him to succeed, and felt bothered with every cruel twist of fate thrown his way. His perseverance in transforming the Bridge Crew into a motivated brotherhood of men was believable, largely due to the length of the book, as Sanderson was able to explore the intricate relationships within Bridge 4 and take his time fleshing out their transformation. Kaladin, too, transforms, taking to leadership like a bird to flight, rising out of resignation and depression.
The various cultures and ethnic groups were fantastic. It reminded me of everything I enjoy about playing video game RPG's - the best ones have unique locations to explore, with different language, clothing, culture and setting. The male narrator does a good job taking on the various voices of characters.
The way the story is written is very appealing. Just as I got a satisfying look at Kaladin and Bridge Team 4's progress, things would shift to side plots and other characters.
The complex stories of these "side" characters intrigued me as well. Shallan's story truly surprised me - I don't want to spoil it, but the relationship between her and a particular man did not turn out how I would have expected, and the surprise hit me hard and made me feel great respect for the author. Though the author must have known that a certain outcome was being rooted for by the readers, being unique and defying conventional story line developments was both brave and far more interesting. Jasnah and Shallan's relationship, too, had its share of surprising twists, and both feel like strong female characters despite the rigid gender roles of the universe they exist in.
Otherwise, the universe in general held many little touches I snjoyed - I loved the idea of Spren, of the Shard plate, of the King's Wit (I hope for far more Wit in the future, I loved him).
I can't wait for more of this series. This was an awesome introduction to Sanderson's writing for me. I am not easily impressed, and previous great works have set the bar and my expectations very high. This is a great series.
Pro bonus, Sanderson is young and appears healthy - I think he could easily live to finish this book series. I can't say the same for the aging author of Song of Ice and Fire, and obviously the author of the Wheel of Time series did not live to see his series' completion. This does matter to me, because I want the storyline to be neatly finished and tied up by the creator of the fictional universe I commit my time to.
Unfortunately this is the first audio book I've listened to, so I don't have anything else to compare it to.
The story is well written. It brings in enough characters to keep the story interesting, but not too many where you feel lost by the sheer number of characters present.
Voice were great as helping to paint the picture in my mind. Nothing over done.
There were several points at which the book made me literally laugh out loud.
Well worth the download.
Epic Intrigue Fantasy
"Ah, Brightlord Taeselin, still engaged in your experiment to prove a maximum threshold of human idiocy? Good for you. Very empirical of you."
The battle when Kaladin and Dalinar finally meet
Probably not for a while. I don't usually listen to books like this again unless I need to get up to speed for a new release. Since the new book is due out later this year, I'll remember the story until then.
I had two. Highprince Dalinar Kholin and Szeth-son-son-Vallano. Dalinar because of his sense of honor and Szeth because of his fearsome, and well-deserved, reputation.
This book has excellent narration. The only problem, and it was a tiny one, has to do with the pronunciation of the name of one of the characters. One pronounced it one way, the other a different way. Not a big thing but it seems easily avoided.
I will listen to it again after all the books in the series come out.
Not going to try to spell the name, but I did like The Black Thorn. He originally seemed to be a self-centered middle aged man, who had his eyes opened by visions and thereafter wished to become a better person.
The ability to drive and listen. I can just listen on my way to work whereas if I had the book I would only be able to read at home.
Sanderson is great at creating unique mechanics for magic. The speed of the novel is perfect not to fast or slow. Really looking forward to the next books in the series.
I almost never give 5 stars. I gave it 4 stars because I reserve 5 stars for a VERY select few although I was on the fence :).
The Way of Kings is one of the best audiobooks I've listened to. Brandon Sanderson's wonderful writing plus Michael Kramer and Kate Reading's narration has made this easy and fun to listen to.
I love Brandon Sanderson's world building and magic systems. That in combination with his compelling characters completely pulls you into the story.
Kaladin! And Rock. I love Michael Kramer's voice for Rock. :)
Yes! But it was 45+ hours, so that wasn't possible.
Brandon Sanderson has developed an alternate fantasy science fiction world that has a unique feel to it. I found the development of the skills and abilities of the various characters to be both intriguing, and imaginative. The story line takes place in several places and characters at once, so it takes a while to appreciate how they are all heading to a climax but the book is difficult to stop once you do. You'll regret it if you don't jump into this series. The only thing bad I will say is that its been a while waiting for book 2. I hope the author gets it released soon.
I was already a fan of Brandon Sanderson, but this is some of his best work in my opinion.
This book reminds me of some of the good t.v. shows out there where we visit with each character and their individual storylines until we build up to a point, and then switch. I don't mind this, I love it actually because it keeps the storyline moving, while keeping you interested in coming back to each of the characters. It might be frustrating for some people because Brandon creates his world in an alien landscape and culture, and there are a lot of characters, but that's what I like. There's depth and a reason for everything in his writing.
I like the "intro's" into each chapter. In the audio version it can be a little confusing, but in the end when they are brought into the story, it's a great lightbulb moment.
I've now listened to this audiobook 2 or 3 times. I just can't wait until the next in the series comes out.
The Way of Kings is the best audiobook (and indeed, book) I have listened to yet.
It reminds me of the First Law series by Joe Abercrombie. The narration follows several characters separately as they slowly spiral into a single plot. It takes its time, building a rich picture of the world and its occupants, so that the reader can savor each event in its time. Though Way of Kings has more magic present in the world and story than the First Law series.
Kate Reading and Michael Kramer both had an excellent variety of voices for the numerous characters. It was very easy to tell who was whom by the voices alone, which helps when following so many different characters through scenes filled with dialog. Kramer in particular has a remarkable talent for giving different voices to different people, and capturing the accents of different lands. And with two strong female protagonists, it was excellent to have a skilled female performer to give them the character of voice they needed.
By the second half, I absolutely wanted to listen to it all in one sitting. But at more than 40 hours, that wasn't very likely to happen. Still, I found myself listening to it for great spans of time every chance I could.