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The Final Empire: Mistborn Book 1 | [Brandon Sanderson]

The Final Empire: Mistborn Book 1

For a thousand years the ash fell and no flowers bloomed. For a thousand years the Skaa slaved in misery and lived in fear. For a thousand years the Lord Ruler, the "Sliver of Infinity," reigned with absolute power and ultimate terror, divinely invincible. Then, when hope was so long lost that not even its memory remained, a terribly scarred, heart-broken half-Skaa rediscovered it in the depths of the Lord Ruler's most hellish prison.
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Publisher's Summary

Brandon Sanderson, fantasy's newest master tale spinner, author of the acclaimed debut Elantris, dares to turn a genre on its head by asking a simple question: What if the hero of prophecy fails? What kind of world results when the Dark Lord is in charge? The answer will be found in the Mistborn Trilogy, a saga of surprises and magical martial-arts action that begins in Mistborn.

For a thousand years the ash fell and no flowers bloomed. For a thousand years the Skaa slaved in misery and lived in fear. For a thousand years the Lord Ruler, the "Sliver of Infinity," reigned with absolute power and ultimate terror, divinely invincible. Then, when hope was so long lost that not even its memory remained, a terribly scarred, heart-broken half-Skaa rediscovered it in the depths of the Lord Ruler's most hellish prison.

Kelsier "snapped" and found in himself the powers of a Mistborn. A brilliant thief and natural leader, he turned his talents to the ultimate caper, with the Lord Ruler himself as the mark. Kelsier recruited the underworld's elite, the smartest and most trustworthy allomancers, each of whom shares one of his many powers, and all of whom relish a high-stakes challenge. Only then does he reveal his ultimate dream, not just the greatest heist in history, but the downfall of the divine despot. But even with the best criminal crew ever assembled, Kel's plan looks more like the ultimate long shot, until luck brings a ragged girl named Vin into his life.

Like him, she's a half-Skaa orphan, but she's lived a much harsher life. Vin has learned to expect betrayal from everyone she meets, and gotten it. She will have to learn to trust, if Kel is to help her master powers of which she never dreamed.

©2006 Brandon Sanderson; (P)2009 Macmillan Audio

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  •  
    Katja Tampa, FL, United States 09-27-10
    Katja Tampa, FL, United States 09-27-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    93
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    "Completely different"

    This book was surprisingly different from everyother fantasy book I've listened too. The characters are fresh and bold. The narrator gets all the voices right. It doesn't take long to get absorbed into the story. Well worth the credit.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nathan Upland, CA, United States 09-21-10
    Nathan Upland, CA, United States 09-21-10 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
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    "A welcome introduction to a wondrous world"

    I have found this book so far to be a wonderful experience, with Sanderson's characters proving varied, interesting, and much deeper than they seem at first glance. A relatively simply-woven plot does nothing to hamper what is essentially an adventure about saving the world from the antagonist that has already succeeded in gaining control. One of the complaints I have seen directly mentioned a portion of this book that involves a lengthy meeting where the characters discuss a large plan, complete with chalkboard, snacks, and a circle of executive members. While this might seem a long exercise in boring writing, I found it a delightful break in the action. When confronted with a completely new universe, it is always nice when the author slips in numerous facts about the populace, geography, and economics of the world being written about. Indeed, Sanderson never misses an opportunity to provide depth and insight that greatly enjoyed. This is a book to be enjoyed, not analyzed, and anyone who pays even a modicum of attention will find it easy to do just that.
    -----
    P.S. Michael Kramer is an astounding reader who illustrates with intonation and diction alone. You will never be disappointed with his characterization, and he does much to increase the effect of the story and its characters upon the reader.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Echo 09-16-10
    Echo 09-16-10

    Oread

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "One of the greatest books you'll ever own"

    This is a brilliant novel. After just reading The Night Angel Trilogy I wondered if i'd ever find something as clever and exciting and now I have. The narrator has a great voice and i've even started listening to the tilogy all over again.

    I'd recommend this book to anyone tired of reading the same thoughtless story over and over again and who wants something that will surprise you till the very end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William New Port Richey, FL, United States 09-03-10
    William New Port Richey, FL, United States 09-03-10 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    4
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    "Great original fantasy, fascinating...."

    I really liked this book and look forward with anticipation to listening to the other two books in the series. I found the story original; Sanderson did an excellent job of thinking-up and sticking to the rules of allomancy. Simply fascinating. Unlike some of Sanderson's other writings, this book was "up and running" within a fairly short time and kept moving, with only a couple of slow spots, all the way to the end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrew Petersen 08-13-10 Listener Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    12
    4
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    "What a great beginning!"

    I think this book had some flaws, mostly in not quite being able to capture the feelings of different moments in the book. But it was so creative and unique that I have to give it 5 stars. I love the new magic system that Brandon Sanderson created and that he was able to take a different spin on fantasy. Loved this book and I hope the series is all as good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ione Lebanon, TN, United States 08-05-10
    Ione Lebanon, TN, United States 08-05-10 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great action fantasy --"

    I was very pleased with this book. Although I liked parts of Sanderson's first book, Elantris, that book had a lot of flaws. After reading his first entry in the Wheel of Time series (The Gathering Storm), however, I was more impressed with Sanderson's talent -- and I decided to give his other books a try. I'm happy to say that he doesn't disappoint with The Final Empire.

    The systems of magic/power used in this book seem quite original, even if a tad clunky. And as with Sanderson's other books, the action scenes are gripping. I also loved descriptive details like the ash falls and the brown plants, which bring the depressed dreary atmosphere of that world to life. The author makes it quite clear that he always intended this to be a series rather than a stand-alone book, but fortunately I actually want to know what happens next.

    As for criticisms of the book: I agree with the complaint from other reviewers that the world actually seems quite small in a way. Although we do see some action in places outside of the main city, we seem expected to believe that an entire "Empire" is overthrown by an uprising within one city. Also, there are definite echoes of the Wheel of Time books, which I found a bit irritating at times -- but, considering that Sanderson admits to being a rabid fan of Jordan's books, that is not terribly surprising. And while some listeners may be put off by the narrator's understated style of reading, I find it comfortably familiar from the Jordan books. The recording itself had a serious production flaw, consisting of multiple unexplained pauses throughout the book. Those were quite annoying at times, but had nothing to do with the book itself.

    Overall, this is an exciting and enjoyable listen. I'll be downloading the next volume immediately!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason Delles 08-01-10 Member Since 2014
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    41
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    "Great series and ending with each book"

    Like others, I am a huge Wheel of Time series fan and found that I really liked Sanderson's writing style. While I am waiting for the next Wheel of Time book, I decided to listen to Mistborn. It didn't take long to get fully hooked. After listening to lots of Stephen King, who has some of the worst endings to books ever, it was refreshing to find Sanderson, who has a great skill for developing exciting climaxes and wrapping up story lines so it all makes sense. I can't recommend this series enough.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C Michael Kelso, WA, USA 06-23-10
    C Michael Kelso, WA, USA 06-23-10 Member Since 2014
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    6
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    "Amazing Story"

    Brandon Sanderson rocks! This is simply an amazing story, very entertaining. Fantasy is not my favorite genre, but looking forward to future books by Mr. Sanderson. Also, Michael Kramer is BY FAR the best narrator I've heard to date. I've listened to about a hundred books so far and he is fantastic. I discovered the Wheel of Time series by searching titles by Michael Kramer's name, which is another great series. If you have the time to listen, I highly recommend this series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    robert 05-22-10
    robert 05-22-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
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    13
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    "Play Misty for me"

    Fantasy is not usually my favorite genre, but I needed a long novel for travel...and found that Mistborn Book 1 was not bad. I'm looking forward for Book 2.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dawn Flagstaff, AZ, USA 04-02-10
    Dawn Flagstaff, AZ, USA 04-02-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    46
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    "A good tale"

    I found the overall story arc very interesting and engaging. I didn't want to stop listening, and raced toward the end (quite like the characters did, but without the allomancy).

    However, there were two things that kept this from being a five star rating for me. The first is a peculiar authorial tic. He writes about "adjective eyes" (angry eyes, depressed eyes, horrified eyes). It drove me crazy by the end. The other was that this particular narrator, Michael Kramer, had a few problems throughout with Kel's accent. Kel would have an English accent, a Irish accent, an American accent, etc. It would eventually go back to normal, but it was a problem for me.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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