I wish the book followed the main characters and their activities more and left a lot of the world building out of it. Interesting and I liked it, but not nearly fast enough to keep my attention while exercising. Works on a long drive, though.
This book was far, far better than I had expected. I'm a big fan of Mistborn, but Warbreaker lost my interest quickly. I wasn't sure what to expect with The Way of Kings. This novel is far and away the best I've ever read.
This was quite simply the most enjoyable book I have heard since becoming a member of Audible. After listening to over 100 titles, this is the only one that I felt compelled to buy (in hardcover no less) after hearing it. It is also the only one I have listened to twice. It is the only book I have raved to my friends about and told them to listen to the first few chapters. Sells them every time. I am normally a closet audible listener.
Simply amazing story. Yes, there is a lot of build up in some of the plot lines, but it never goes flat. The action sequences are the best I have ever read. THIS is why I love fantasy! Big battles, big heros, big swords, valor, magic, and just pure "bad-ass-ness." Awesome! Lots of books claim to be epic in scope. This book delivers. The opening and closing chapters alone are worth the price. The book fires on all cylinders. I found myself listening to some passages, two, three or even four times, because they made such an impression. Way of Kings has what I always wished The Lord of the Rings to have. WoK doesn't nibble around the edges and hint at powerful beings and magic. It serves them up on a big platter and blows you away!
This would make such a great big budget movie or series. Actually it would have to be a series to cover all of the material.
Narration: Michael Kramer's deadpan delivery is perfect for the book. Kate Reading does a fine job as well.
I don't want to give anything away, so I'll end here.
Bottom line: If you don't like this, then you don't like fantasy!
This is an incredible story. I love Brandon Sanderson's books and the narration is very good. I hope the next book comes out by this summer.
The book was very well paced, it was well written and a joy to read. My only complaints are that one of the female characters is a bit annoying, however I feel like that was intentional. . . so well done.
Wow, what an amazingly complex and incredible story! There is a great deal to learn about Sanderson's world, past and present and it's characters, past and present. The characters are deep and rich and so intricately woven into each-other, whether they know it or not, and they are all steeped in ritual, pride, honor and ignorance. Sound familiar?
I lost myself in the imagining of what was happening at any given time during the story and this allowed me to easily endure the sometimes slow and monotone nature of the narration. I am always aware of being to critical of something I can't do better than another, but the narration was my only hurdle with this wonderful story. Michael Kramers voice was clear, concise and unwavering, but lacked some charisma and personality. Kate Readings voice had more of those desirable qualities but I still found myself wanting more 'zip' in the story-telling. Over-all, I put it at #16 of my listens- out of several hundred.
When I read the Mistborn series with metal magic I thought wow what an imagination! How does Brandon come up with such a compelling new magic system, weave in engrossing story and keep me locked until I can finish. He couldn't do that again, right? Well Brandon did it again and just enthralled me for 45 engaging hours. Lashing stormlight? How does he do it? I know I'm not saying much about the compelling characters, interwoven story lines and apocalyptic feeling of doom but I just finished and I'm still reeling! I can't wait for the next book! Well done Brandon!
What Brandon Sanderson does better than any other fantasy author is combining immense scale with amazingly intimate character arcs. As much as I love The Wheel of Time one of its great failings is that epic set pieces come and go in a couple of pages. The Way of Kings revels in its set pieces, and they are magnificent! That's not to say the characters suffer in favor of battle scenes like a Joe Abercrombie novel. The three character arcs in this novel are some of the most satisfying I have ever read. Combine that with a beautifully realized world that unfolds wonderfully throughout the book and you have one of the best fantasy novels ever written.
The narration is very well done. At first I was concerned by the narrator's slow pace but it flows well with the novel and somehow makes it feel like you are being told the story rather than read to.
First and most importantly to any audio book, the performances by Mr Kramer and Mrs Reading are very well done. Note that each narrator reads an entire section of the book at a time, one reader when the section is dominated by the female lead characters, the other when the story is dominated by the male character. They don't switch between the two narrators within a single dialogue. It works well.
Brandon weaves an excellent tale that draws us into a well described and thought out world. Never sacrificing the movement of the story with overly done prose or details, Brandon strikes a great balance here. The story follows a number of different main characters, who live in the same world and whom may or may not cross paths during the book. There are a few side stories that could stand as separate short stories, but each of these side tracks enriches the world we are being put into, and were always fun to listen too. Never does the listener feel like he is being sent on some irrelevant, tangental, meaningless filler (something I found all to common before giving up on The Wheel of Time). Meanwhile, the main arcs of the story stayed coherent throughout the length of the book.
The storytelling here is some of the best I have read. The best in a long time.
Clearly this is meant as a epic series. Thankfully this first book wraps up nicely leaving the listener satisfied but yearning for more.