Widely acclaimed for his work completing Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time saga, Brandon Sanderson now begins a grand cycle of his own, one every bit as ambitious and immersive.
Roshar is a world of stone and storms. Uncanny tempests of incredible power sweep across the rocky terrain so frequently that they have shaped ecology and civilization alike. Animals hide in shells, trees pull in branches, and grass retracts into the soilless ground. Cities are built only where the topography offers shelter.
It has been centuries since the fall of the 10 consecrated orders known as the Knights Radiant, but their Shardblades and Shardplate remain: mystical swords and suits of armor that transform ordinary men into near-invincible warriors. Wars were fought for them, and won by them. One such war rages on the Shattered Plains. There, Kaladin has been reduced to slavery. In a war that makes no sense, where 10 armies fight separately against a single foe, he struggles to save his men and to fathom the leaders who consider them expendable.
Brightlord Dalinar Kholin commands one of those other armies. Like his brother, the late king, he is fascinated by an ancient text called The Way of Kings. Troubled by visions of ancient times and the Knights Radiant, he has begun to doubt his own sanity.
Across the ocean, an untried young woman named Shallan seeks to train under an eminent scholar and notorious heretic, Dalinar’s niece, Jasnah. Though she genuinely loves learning, Shallan’s motives are less than pure. As she plans a daring theft, her research for Jasnah hints at secrets of the Knights Radiant and the true cause of the war.
©2010 Dragonsteel Entertaiment, LLC (P)2010 Macmillan Audio
I've written less than 5 reviews despite owning literally over a hundred audible audiobooks. But this one warrants a review! DON'T BUY THIS BOOK, UNLESS YOU WANT THIS AS YOUR FUTURE:
(1) You will literally put your life on hold to listen to this book. This was so bad, that I actually downloaded the barnes and noble nook software so I could buy a written copy, so I could READ it faster. I have too much to do to take 5 days listening to this but it was soooo good that I was going to do that.
(2) If you're like me, you may love the book. But that just makes you want the next installment more. On Sanderson's site it says it's not even planned to be released until Fall 2012. D'oh!
But what you'll get is a great book. Great characters who you'll care about and who'll grow. Great world that will make you think. Great narration. 5 stars! And what a bargain for just one credit!
Wow! Great Book. Love the Heroes, the ladies, the readers.... Excellent, Excellent, Excellent!!!
Love books with virtue and honor. One character is something like CS Forester's "Horatio Hornblower" and Bernard Cornwell's "Sharpe's Rifles" series.
Great value, 45 hours of listening. Never boring or slow.
Robert Jordan's "The Wheel of Time" series is my favorite for the "Fantasy Series" genre. This one so far is on par! Other books of this genre that I like are "The Warded Man" by Peter V. Brett and George R.R. Martins "Ice and Fire" Series....
If you liked any of the books I have reference then you will love this book. If you have not read these referenced books and you like this book, put them on your readling list. :-)
I loved this book. Of course it was a little slow at first, but that's to be expected when background information is being given at the beginning of any long novel. The characters are well developed and you care about what happens with them. I got a little tired of the jumps back and forth in time, but that was only minor. The glaring flaw was in the narration. Michael Kramer and Kate Reading do a great job and unlike other reviews I have no problem with their style. Toward the very end of the book though the pronunciation of Sadius was changed by Kate Reading to the point where I was asking myself if a new character had been introduced somewhere that I missed. I soon figured out who she was talking about, but it's one of those little things that grate on the nerves every time you hear it. It doesn't seem too much to expect that pronunciation of names be consistent throughout an entire series let alone a single book. The producers should be embarrassed to put out a final product with such an amateur flaw. Audio books should be edited as properly as written books.
Say something about yourself!
I finished listening to the book this morning. The narration by Kate Reading and Michael Kramer is outstanding. Arguably the best narrators you could find. I enjoyed the book very much and I strongly recommend it to anyone looking for 46 hours of good reading (listening).
I'm actually a day old tart, filled with maple custard. Perhaps, this reads as a rational introduction to others, and you are deliberately misreading it, because, come on, maple custard.
It definitely earned a five star rating, as sweeping epic fantasies go. Sanderson takes us into the heads of each individual protagonist, and many of the 2nd level characters. The quotes are both creepy and portentous, as well as overdone and vague. The secret behind their harvesting is terrifying.
This book starts with a quick dramatic plot point, and then ebbs and builds, slowly, until the last five or so hours, where everything gets tied together, and presents a promising setup for book 2.
Brandon Sanderson's writing style, in this book, reminded me of Robert Jordan's; where you'd have these intricate meandering progressions, and suddenly a plot twist would rattle the storyline. I feel it's worth the two credits, and regret waiting for the next book in the series, but at least we're guaranteed it will be out before The Winds of Winter.
I'm not the biggest fan of Kate Reading's narration. Something about the way she draws out the words 'eyes' and 'oaths'. She has a great voice and she would be good for a single pov novel, and for R. Jordan's books, since his female characters are all so similar. She's not the best at diversifying her voices, or at male voices, so it's sometimes hard to tell who's speaking. Probably, it's just me, and I'm sorry I couldn't give the book a 5 star narration, as it deserves.
It started slow, but picked up significant momentum by last few chapters. At the start of this book, i was thinking of giving this book 3 stars, but last few chapters pull it to 4. Narrators did a great job.
Book reminded me of Mistborn that may be it is the combination of Michael and Brandon that reminded me of Mistborn. (by telling why i felt that way i would be giving away too much about the story). However, Mistborn is one of my fav books, and i would not mind reading another story that is similar.
I high recommend this book.
I don't often go for fantasy books. I listened to the sample and wasn't too sure about Michael Kramer's voice. Based on the other reviews and the fact that it was a long story for 1 credit I decided to give it a listen. This is one of the most engrossing stories I have listened to and I didn't want it to end.
The characters are well developed. The author provides you with characters that aren't perfect, they're conflicted, they're fallible, and they're intelligent. There is a bit of everything in this book from battles to philosophy and the characters all have reasons and motivations for their actions. I really enjoy that aspect of the story and the way it is developed throughout. The world isn't described with intense detail but there is enough to allow you to create the images of the places and people in the way that you see it, not the absolute way author sees it.
The narration is outstanding. There is a large cast in this in this story and the narrators do a great job of giving a different voice to each character. There was a time when the narrators ran across the same character's name and they pronounced with a different emphasis on the syllables (making the name sound like a new name to me), so I had a brief moment of confusion. No big deal though.
This is very easily among my favorites and am anxious for the next in the series.
Waiting for next Wheel of Time and Song of Ice and Fire...(not holding my breath)
Been through Codex Alera, Saga of 7 Suns, Sword of Truth, Mistborn, Prince Roger, Discworld, Deathstalker, etc. etc. etc.
Looking for another long series.
Spent a LONG time on one that ... I finally gave up on when I saw this.
This is just what I needed - a book I can't put down - one that has made it again a NECESSITY that I have my ipod for my daily 1 hour plus drive. Since I'm not finished yet, the 5 stars may be premature, but I don't care. This book is GOOD.
Brandon Sanderson really, really, REALLY knows how to write. Can't wait for the next WoT book, and now, can't wait for the next in this series.
Let me preface this by saying that I think lots of folks will like this book. There is much of the book that I like. However, this was a difficult read for me.
My first Sanderson book was Steelheart. Which I loved and highly recommend. Once done, I went looking for another read by the author and stumbled on The Way of Kings. It looked like it was exactly what I wanted. A nice long book that was the beginning of a series that I could dig my teeth into.
So this was a book I really wanted to like. And again, there is much to like here. But the writing style, and the approach to the story was so radically different from Steelheart that it was sort of shocking. Maybe it was just me, and my pre conceived expectations, but I had a really difficult time keeping track of whats going on in the story. Which, in itself, is not a problem. I don't mind complexity, but my problem with this story is that I kept getting the feeling that the level of complexity didn't really move the story forward. And in fact, often got in the way of character development. Now that Im finished I feel justified in those beliefs. There is a lot of time spent in this book with side stories, and flashbacks, that just never pay off. Or offer any insight into the motivations of the characters.
It took me until well into part three until I could finally pinpoint the different story threads. Once I started working out where the main story lines were things improved quite a bit. The main characters Caladin, Shalin, and Delanar Kolin are great characters. The Caladin story itself is worth the price of admission. But again, in the end there wasn't a real satisfying payoff for any of the characters. And the ending! I think it was meant to be a powerful foreshadowing of what is to come. But I was left feeling very unsatisfied, and Im really questioning if I want to continue with the series.
Again, I don't want to be too disparaging. This didn't work for me as well as I would have liked, but maybe its just me. This book, and series, is definitely worth considering. The "dual narrators" approach is very interesting, and does help to define the main characters. But if you are looking for another Steelheart shake it off and get ready for a very different experience.
Not very many writers can be so consistant with writing amazing books with storys that have meaning in everything that is put on paper. Add another to sandersons record. Great book!
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