Oathbringer

Hooooly crap. The first three quarters of Oathbringer are fairly slow. They’re still fascinating, building up more and more of the world of The Stormlight Archive, answering some questions while raising even more.

And then crap really hits the fan. I read the final several hundred pages in one session and wow a lot of things happen. Epic. Just epic. Read the book just for that and don’t put it down early.


Words of Radiance

“I am offend!” Shallan yelled. “You have offended Her Highness again!”

“Very offend!”

“You’d better apologize.”

“No apologize!” Shallan declared. “Boots!”

Kal leaned back, looking between the two of them, trying to parse what had just been said. “Boots?” he asked.

“Yes,” Shallan said. “I am liking your boots. You will apology with boots.”

“You … want my boots?”

“Did you not hear Her Highness?” Tyn asked, arms folded. “Are soldiers of this Dalinar Kholin’s army so disrespectful?”

“I’m not disrespectful,” Kal said. “But I’m not giving her my boots.”

“You insult!” Shallan declared, stepping forward, pointing at him. Stormfather, those horses were enormous! “I will tell all who are to listen! When arriving, I will say, ‘Kholin is stealer of boots and taker of women’s virtue!’”

Kal sputtered. “Virtue!”

“Yes,” Shallan said; then she glanced over to Tyn. “Virtue? No, wrong word. Virture … No … Vesture. Vesture! Taker of woman’s vesture! That is word I wanted.”

The soldier glanced to his companions, looking confused. Drat, Shallan thought. Good puns are lost on men with poor vocabulary.

Words of Radiance takes The Way of Kings and builds it up in all the right ways… only to tear everything down once again.


The Way of Kings

Tell … tell my brother … he must find the most important words a man can say.

First, the worldbuilding and magic systems.


Edgedancer

Edgedancer is a short story set in Sanderson’s Cosmere, specifically on Roshar of the Stormlight Archive. It features Lift, a young girl who was first featured in one of the interludes of Words of Radiance interludes and now has a story all to her own.

In short, Lift is a lot of fun. She’s a surgebinder who can make herself ‘awesome’–her term for it–and basically ignore friction. She seems an overall good person with a somewhat odd sense of morals and has a way of talking and acting that will just leave you smiling.


Shadows for Silence in the Forests of Hell

Shadows for Silence in the Forests of Hell is a fascinating Sanderson story set in an out of the way corner of his shared universe–the cosmere.

It’s a creepy short (for Sanderson) that follows an older woman (probably middle aged). She’s a mother, an inn-keeper, and a bounty hunter. She’s a wonderful character and really does do a lot to sell the story.


Sixth of the Dusk

I’ve previously listened about this story on the Writing Excuses podcast and read it in the Shadows Beneath anthology, but it’s just as weird/good now as it was then.

Worldbuildingwise, the idea of an ocean culture that travels between terrifying islands (with just as terrifying beasties in the water) is fascinating. Sentient birds ( / worms ) that people can tame and carry with them to grant them special powers? Yes please.


Secret History

“Oh, hell,” Kelsier said. “There’s actually a God?” “Yes.” Kelsier decked him.

If you’ve read the Mistborn series, read Secret History. If you haven’t, read the Mistborn series, then read Secret History. It’s worth the read just for for the the crazy intertwined universe-building that Sanderson has been pulling off for years now.


Allomancer Jak and the Pits of Eltania

Allomancer Jak is a hilarious, pulpy, over the top adventure story set on the Mistborn universe (specifically the Alloy of Law time period).

It adds a bit of world building–specifically explaining how the Koloss have changed since the first era of the Final Empire–but mostly it’s just fun to read.


The Eleventh Metal

The Eleventh Metal is a short story originally written for the Mistborn Adventure Game (an RPG) that takes place before the events of the first Mistborn book. It gives us a bit more backstory about Kelsier and actually shows his own training, which is interesting enough.

Overall, it’s not bad. It’s just very short and doesn’t really add anything in particular to the rest of the Mistborn stories.


The Hope of Elantris

This is a cute little side story set during the climactic final scenes of the main Elantris storyline. Basically, it’s a story that Sanderson had originally in mind for Elantris but cut due to pacing or other issues.

Basically, it follows Matisse, an Elantrian who is charged with watching after the children and ends up saving them all with the help of Ashe the Seon.