I think I was pretty late to the Brandon Sanderson party. The first book I read by him was Steelheart and I’m pretty sure that came out last year. Like I said before, I only just got back into reading books in the last couple years, so I missed a lot of good stuff. So anyway I liked Steelheart, I had read the first 3 or 4 Wheel of Time books, and I knew Sandy was the one who took over the end of that series. So when I saw he started his own massive decade spanning series The Stormlight Archives I got all up in that. Loved it. LUV’d it.
Once I got through Way of Kings and Words of Radiance I had to see what else he had out there. Then I saw this little series called Mistborn. I ripped throught The Final Empire only a couple months ago and since I knew I’d be doing the Cannonball Read I figured that I’d save the rest of the series. So week 2 is about all I could wait before reading through Well of Ascension.
I don’t really know where the series is going and I don’t really care (I feel the same about Stormlight Archives). BranSan is able to build such huge and immersive worlds in these books that you can just lose yourself in them. Our main protagonist is the former street urchin turned warrior Vin who was able to kill the closest thing to a god on the planet in the Lord Ruler in the first book. Oh, yeah I’m totally going to talk about stuff that happened in the first book because this is a review of the second book. If anyone wants to cry spoilers…then…you are a bad person and you should cry.
So with Vin becoming more and more familiar with her mistborn powers of allomancy (I’m not explaining it, but it’s really cool), you can’t wait for the next time she shows them off or does something new to someone that was completely not expecting it. She believes she has an ally in Zane, another mistborn who she thinks will understand her more than the man she loves, who is also his brother, but completely normal and without any powers. Meanwhile Zane thinks that mistborn are being used as tools by the different warlords that have arisen in the wake of the Lord Ruler’s death when they should actually be calling the shots.
Since the Lord Ruler was killed at the end of the first book, this is basically the immediate after effects in that power vacuum. His former capital is held by Vin and her compatriots while several powerful armies approach. They probably couldn’t even hold off one of them, but are able to play them off each other for a while, but of course that doesn’t last forever. The Sandman had me pretty convinced I knew how this book was going to end, but I was wrong, and I was super glad for it. I won’t say more about the specific event in near the end of the book, but suffice to say if you’re familiar at all with Stormlight archives, you’ll see that he was working on a bit of the same wavelength.
I don’t think I’m making any wild statements calling BSan one of the best fantasy writers out there, I’m just looking to add my voice to the chorus of cheers for his work. Mistborn is another great series. Well of Ascension improves upon the story started in The Final Empire. Is this book for everyone? Probably not. Is it for fans of the genre though? Yeah I’d say it’s pretty well up there. I expect to complete Books 3, 4 and 5 (when/if it comes out later this year) and hope for more of the same. I’m giving 4/5 only because I established Golden Son as the pinnacle 5/5 A+ #ThumbsUp book in review #1 so until something at least equals that, there won’t be any more 5’s.