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Publisher's Summary

The eagerly awaited sequel to the New York Times best-selling Words of Radiance, from epic fantasy author Brandon Sanderson at the top of his game.

In Oathbringer, the third volume of the New York Times best-selling Stormlight Archive, humanity faces a new Desolation with the return of the Voidbringers, a foe with numbers as great as their thirst for vengeance.

Dalinar Kholin's Alethi armies won a fleeting victory at a terrible cost. The enemy Parshendi summoned the violent Everstorm, which now sweeps the world with destruction and in its passing awakens the once peaceful and subservient parshmen to the horror of their millennia-long enslavement by humans. While on a desperate flight to warn his family of the threat, Kaladin Stormblessed must come to grips with the fact that the newly kindled anger of the parshmen may be wholly justified.

Nestled in the mountains high above the storms, in the tower city of Urithiru, Shallan Davar investigates the wonders of the ancient stronghold of the Knights Radiant and unearths dark secrets lurking in its depths. And Dalinar realizes that his holy mission to unite his homeland of Alethkar was too narrow in scope. Unless all the nations of Roshar can put aside Dalinar's blood-soaked past and stand together - and unless Dalinar himself can confront that past - even the restoration of the Knights Radiant will not prevent the end of civilization.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2017 Dragonsteel Entertainment, LLC  (P)2017 Macmillan Audio

Critic Reviews

"Character development is at the heart of the book, and it is here that Kramer and Reading shine, with remarkably consistent and multifaceted characters that fuel the action of the story.... Adept pacing highlights both the intensity of hand-to-hand combat and quieter moments of sorrow and grief, fully realizing the intricate world that Sanderson has created." (AudioFile Magazine)   

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    17,576
  • 4 Stars
    1,924
  • 3 Stars
    493
  • 2 Stars
    116
  • 1 Stars
    64

Performance

  • 5 out of 5 stars
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    17,489
  • 4 Stars
    1,260
  • 3 Stars
    189
  • 2 Stars
    56
  • 1 Stars
    26

Story

  • 5 out of 5 stars
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    16,169
  • 4 Stars
    1,998
  • 3 Stars
    564
  • 2 Stars
    167
  • 1 Stars
    72
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Strong Storytelling, will upset Kaladin fans

Oathbringer is book three of five. The first five books in the Stormlight Archive tell their own story. Later, another set of five will tell another story. Sometimes all the heroes win in the middle, sometimes they fail. In this book, we have both wins and losses. In one book, you have three small novels going on, with important points of view from many people.

Sanderson dives deeper into the cultures of Roshar and the conflicts that have nothing to do with the “bad guys.” Instead many of the conflicts are inside different characters own heads and hearts. This aspect of the story will be hard for many fans. This aspect of the story is important. Awareness of bias and of mental health issues is important. It’s rare to see them addressed so directly in an adventure fantasy.

But in this book, Kaladin, the hero of book one and book two – is not the star. He has growth, but not the awesome growth of power leveling up I think many fans were hoping to read. Instead, Bridge 4 as a whole, is given more points of view and room to grow. Sometime these are painful in heart wrenching ways, but in beautiful character development ways.

Dalinar’s flashbacks will make you look at him differently. It will be hard to see a hero in such a different light. Journey before destination everyone. His journey is a strong one.

The ladies of the Stormlight Archive are given more room to grow here. But at times it is a backward growth. At others it is wonderful to see them breaking the molds of Voirn culture.

Once you turn the page on Part 5, get ready for a rush of a ride. You will not want to put the book down for the final act.

Many important magical questions are answered in this volume of the Stormlight Archive, but it raises more questions. Some of the questions answered, were not the ones many fans were hoping to see addressed, including myself. I hope readers will appreciate the story that was written, for what was written. Not criticizes it because it was not the story they were expecting. I know I love the book, even if there are a few bits I wish were different. But the characters are not perfect people. They would be less interesting if they were.

I love that that the art is included even for the audio book. That is an extra special treat. Michael Kramer and Kate Reading do their typically awesome job narrating the books. I’m glad they kept the voices of the characters the same from the first two volumes of the books.

84 of 108 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

A mixed bag of brilliance, marred by missteps

Brandon Sanderson is one of the greatest story tellers writing today; and this series is his magnum opus. Book 3 is not the strongest of the series. But it still soars in many places, despite some missteps throughout.
Parts of this book left me cheering out loud! Parts of this book are truly awe inspiring.

Other parts had me shaking my head, as long established characters suddenly behaved in ways that contradicted everything the author has told us about them in the past.
For such an immense book, it surprised me how many times an obvious shortcut was taken in order to setup the next scene.

There was one long scene involving a female lead that had no purpose other than comic relief. This bungling, slapstick detour was so jarring, it was hard to return to the rhythm of the story. Worst of all, it felt amateurish, and just wasn't funny.

Almost every competent character had a moment of incompetence so glaring that it became obvious this was a deliberate gimmick. Possibly a recommendation from an editor, but taken too far?

But still, with all of that said, this is still a mostly brilliant story. The action scenes top any blockbuster movie put out this year.
It was filled with many pay-offs from the previous books, some of them setup so expertly that they still surprised me, despite the clues revealed before.

Like all of his books, this was also a vehicle for the author's social, political, and moral view of the world. Presented nicely as part of the story with not-too-much outright preaching.

59 of 80 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Eric
  • Charlotte, NC
  • 11-21-17

Perfection in literature.

If you have read the first two books in this series, then you already know Brandon Sanderson is the greatest storyteller of our generation, and, one of the best to ever put pen to page. That is not grandiose hyperbole. It is understatement. So, now that my opinion on the author is clear, the book. The book is excellent! The pacing is great and the story progressed just the right amount for me. In my opinion, what Sanderson does the best of any writer I have ever read, is the tear-down and rebuilding of characters. I will say, that this book seems to spend more time making everything seem like it's getting worse and worse before finally we see positive change and victories for the main characters. Not really a negative for me but it does feel like there is no hope till nearly the end of the book. I am so glad Sanderson doesn't suffer from whatever George R.R Martin and Patrick Rothfuss have been afflicted with. I think we can reasonably expect the next book in 2-3 years, which is amazing considering he will also be churning out other incredible books and stories along the way.

47 of 66 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Not the best he has written.

I loved the first two books in this series but I had a hard time keeping my attention on the story. I went back many times and listened to parts again and again. There are great parts but there are more that just lag. This isn’t the best he has written.

18 of 26 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

DISAPPOINTED

I recommended the other two books to many friends and family and unfortunately I cannot recommend this one. The book was easy to put down for days and seemed just a long set up for a next book. This story focused too much on the human flaws and frailties of the main characters which is not that interesting or fun to read/listen. All victories were short lived with the next threat looming and that gets tiring after 55 hours. It might be that my expectations were too high after the first two books in the series which I had trouble putting down and wished for more. I prefer an epic tale of heroes with super skills and powers that have great adventures to a series of battles and failures. I still think Brandon Sanderson is a great writer and although I did not enjoy this book I certainly could not do what he does and create and write a story like his.

31 of 46 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Very VERY disappointed

All I have to say is if you are a Kaladin this book will disappoint you. It is like half a book for Kaladin. He is the only main character who doesn’t make any progress and seems to actually go backward. When it looks like the book is building up for something for him it ends up going nowhere. When he is in a big battle he lets the readers anticipation down.

All the other characters had decent progression especially of course Dalinar since this band ok is mainly about him. I would have been happy if something worth rereading happened to Kaladin but nothin of note did, unless you include his short return home. Definitely not something I will reread 4 or 5 times like the first two book. Probably won’t reread it until the next book comes out.

28 of 43 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Lore
  • SAN JOSE, CA, United States
  • 12-17-17

Journey before destination...

Brandon Sanderson finally delivered Oathbringer, the highly anticipated third entry in the Stormlight Archive, and amazingly this volume is even bigger than the first two. As the books get bigger so does the scope of the story being told and that is almost hard to believe. Each of these books would be an entire series for many other authors and the truly amazing part is that Sanderson has 7 more entries planned before he is done. This book focuses on Dalinar Kholin and the events throughout his past that shaped the man he has become. Dalinar bears the nickname Blackthorn and it is time to learn why that is.

Although Dalinar is the focus of this book, all of the main characters return and many new ones are introduced. Now that the Parshendi have summoned the Everstorm, all of Roshar is under threat and Dalinar seeks to unite the various factions together in order to survive the wrath of the Parshmen. They escaped their millennia of slavery in book two and they want to take back what they believe to be rightfully theirs. Dalinar tries to lead the defense from Urithiru, but unfortunately for him, the reputation that earned him the nickname Blackthorn comes back to haunt him.

The scope of the story once again expands significantly and this is the first time in the series that I started to worry about that fact. At this point I am invested in the existing characters and although they all still play significant roles, things have gotten so big that I wish I could spend more time with Kaladin and the men of Bridge Four than learning about the next level of story being told. The first two books of the series were the best fantasy I have ever read, but I must sadly say this one felt a little bloated. The flashbacks that explain Dalinar's past are all excellent but the larger story took center stage and the characters that I wanted to spend time were reduced to cogs in a big machine. More Bridge Four and less Shadesmar please.

The story continues to be read by Michael Kramer and Kate Reading and that makes listening an extremely enjoyable way to experience this amazing story. Despite the fact that this is the weakest of the three books so far it is still the work of a master and a must listen. Book 4 is supposed to focus on Eshonai and is due in 2020.

17 of 26 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Tim K
  • Surrey, BC
  • 02-04-18

Tedious

What did you like best about Oathbringer? What did you like least?

The premise of the book was great, and the end was decent. Liked the idea of the humans not necessarily being the heroes they thought they were.The rest was just tedious. I understood the characters after the second or third flashback, or other attempts to get me to understand. Became filler after a while. I really got tired of the Dalinar flashbacks in particular. Some were good, but too many had little point.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

I love a good long book, but this was long without reason. Tedious is the best word I can use to describe it.

Which character – as performed by Michael Kramer and Kate Reading – was your favorite?

Kaladin is by far the best character, and Michael does his usual fantastic job. Kate Reading is such a perfect pairing in with MIchael. I really enjoy all her characters, but she really nailed Shallan in particular.

Do you think Oathbringer needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

I'm getting a bit tired of the seemingly endless layers of magic and universes. It gets to the point that nothing is impossible or final. No boundaries are no fun. No more books required for me.

Any additional comments?

Brandon Sanderson is one of my favourite authors. I was so excited for this next book in the series, but by half way through I just wanted it to get to the point. I've listened to longer books and didn't want them to end, but not this one. Once again, tedious.

I probably would not have been so harsh on other authors, but Brandon Sanderson is one of the best there is. HIs bar is higher for me. Sorry, Mr. Sanderson.

25 of 39 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

I Will Read That Which is Awesome.

As a disclaimer, this 4-star reveiw is relative strictly to the remainder of the series. If you are new to the stormlight archive, begin with the first book, The Way of Kings, which is pretty much amazing beyond words. If you are choosing to continue the series from where you left off, here's a few general warnings (This review does not contain specific spoilers, unless you have not read TWoK or WoR).

1. Expect Exposition:

The first eight entire hours or so of the audiobook are, frankly, pretty boring. It picks up nicely after that point, but the story takes forever to start gaining steam. After the epic climax of the last book, the sheer amount of reveiw, summary, and reorientation is pretty bewildering, and felt a tad... too much. Be ready, because its worth it.

2. Is NOT a Post-apocalyptic Rosharian Action Novel:

At the end of WoR, the everstorm is sweeping accross the world and supposedly transforming placid parshmen into terrible, overpowered, hyperathletic, naturally armored, ruthless demons that can also shoot lightning. I opened this book with the expectation that violent battles and genocidal slaughters would be pretty much the norm right off the bat. That... Isn't what happened. Don't let it get in the way of enjoying the book.

3. Suspend your Disbelief:

The dangers and stakes of this series grow ever more cosmic in nature, to the point where in this last text, I personally had a really hard time undergoing an actual, concrete visualization of the threat through most of the work. In book one, it is the Parshendi arrows, hurtling toward you as you helplessly charge beneath your bridge. Doesn't get much more real than that. In book two, the danger is mostly from aformentioned Super Lightning Demons, which are a different kind of scary awesome. In book three, the overarching threats seem a lot more... Surreal, I guess. And just a little "evil dark lord ______" ish, where the true villain's only defining charactistic is that they're a really, really Bad Dude with Cosmic Powers. Not to be disparaging-- one thing I appreciate about Sanderson is that most antagonists (especially the minor ones) have very realistic, and often even nobel, aspirations.

All in all, the book was amazing, despite a few weaknesses. Sanderson continuous his tradition of majestic conflict, excellent charicterization, subtle and elegant foreshadowing, and a world as intricate and unique as it is grand. If you have not read the first book, know that the series as a whole is about seven and a half stars out of five, and that the four star reveiw is because I can't give it six out of seven and a half instead ;)

19 of 30 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • richard
  • Novato, CA, United States
  • 11-26-17

disappointed

big fan of Sanderson. it seems like he struggled with this one. the jumps in location, time and plane of existence made the final wrap up weaker for me, the backstory overtook the present so much that the climax felt flat and I skipped the last 3 chapters our main character became a predictable flat extra.

I don't give bad reviews often. but audible credits are expensive if you listen as much as me, so honestly do not expect the same level as one and two.

30 of 50 people found this review helpful