Again Sanderson is awesome! I have read 6 of his books so far and will continue until I have read them all! He is possibly the best author I have ever read...and I have read hundreds of books.
I don't know who I am.
This book is really three books about three characters. Two of these (the stories of Dalinar and Shallan) are quite dull for 3/4 of their stories, and the third (the story of Kaladin) is engrossing from start to finish.
I think reason why the other two stories drag is because they really don't have a central conflict; they are kind of just an account of the various day-to-day happenings of two people. But their stories really do come alive at the 3/4 mark, when these characters become entangled in trying to prevent an impending doom (that will affect the entire world). Kaladin's story is interesting enough to get you through the slow bits in the others.
If you have not read any Brandon Sanderson, I suggest reading the Mistborn series before reading this series. It is better. But if you have already read those, I do recommend reading the Stormlight archive series. It may not be as good as the Mistborn series, but it is still a rollicking good time.
This book has two narrators: a girl that reads the point-of-view chapters of girls, and a guy that does the same for guys. I like the guy more than the girl; but overall, both were fine. I was a bit annoyed that they did not standardize the pronunciation of the names between them; there is a character called 'Sadeas', and the narrators pronounce his name completely differently, which really broke the immersion. It took me a minute to realize that they were talking about the same guy.
Michael Kramer should only narrate books for sleep aid. His reading is dull, flat, and emotionless, with an irritating lilt at the end of almost every sentence. A good narrator should should tell you the story, breathing life into the characters and their actions. Mr. Kramer's narration is so horribly boring and annoying that I couldn't bring myself past the first hour. I will never again waste my time and money on any book with Mr. Kramer's deadpan narration.
Exceptional book, absolutely fantastic story telling and multiple characters leads to a very compelling novel.
Further, the two voice actors have great voices with a wide range of alternate accents and emotions. The performance is fantastic.
Over all one of my favorite books ever, I highly recommend it.
Though it occurs in a world vastly unlike that of Jon Snow, Danaerys, and the others, Sanderson's "The Way of Kings" reminds me of it in spirit. The characters aren't two dimensional; they have weaknesses, prejudices, and strengths that make them human -- both frustrating and likable. At times the story seemed to move slowly, but if you persevere you will be rewarded with characters you care for more and more, a physical world that is fascinating, and a race against time and unknown opponents to unravel the threads of impending doom. I just finished listening to this book and will be downloading the second installment as soon as this review is posted!
P.S. One minor annoyance: the two narrators pronounce Sadeus (spelling?) differently. Wish they'd coordinated to use the same pronunciation.
As an avid Fantasy reader and former English student, I have very high standards for this genre. Most good series fall short in one way or another. This one does not! The world building is flawless and totally original. The Characters are complex and flawed, but still relatable and compelling. The story moves along quickly, but does not feel rushed or predictable. You add the length to these other virtues, and you have a real benchmark masterpiece for the genre!
The icing on the cake is that this series is read by Michael Kramer and Kate Reading! I quite honestly couldn't ask for more! Well done, Sanderson, well done.
***Respectful Slow Clap***