Series: Mistborn #1
Published by Tor Books on July 17, 2006
Genres: Action & Adventure, Fantasy
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Once, a hero rose to save the world. He failed.
For a thousand years since, the world has been a wasteland of ash and mist ruled by the immortal emperor known as the Lord Ruler. Every revolt has failed miserably.
Yet somehow, hope survives. Hope that dares to dream of ending the empire and defeating the Lord Ruler. A new kind of uprising is being planned—one that depends on the cunning of a brilliant criminal mastermind and the determination of an unlikely heroine: a teenage street urchin named Vin.
Once, a hero rose to save the world and failed. This time, can a young heroine succeed?
Imagine finding the one book that seems like it was created just for you. This book can bring you happiness, sadness, and despair. It can make you want to find every spare minute in your daily routine just to read one more chapter. This book will invade your thoughts while you’re not reading it. It will make you want to share it with everyone you know so that you could have someone else to share your joy and pain with.
One of the things I value most as a reader is being able to immerse myself in a story’s world while falling head over heels for the characters. I’ve had several books over the years that do this, but I cannot remember ever falling in love with a world as quickly as I did with the one in the Mistborn series. It’s so fascinating and creative and nothing like I’ve ever read before. It’s simply genius.
The world Brandon Sanderson has created definitely is a complex one, but also one I found utterly fascinating and interesting. The city of Luthadel – and the whole Final Empire – is a bleak and cruel place. All green has vanished from the earth; ash falls from the sky and the population suffers under the reign of the Lord Ruler and his Inquisitors. The god-like emperor has claimed the throne one thousand years ago, and since then, the common people (called skaa) have been enslaved, bereft of joy and willpower. All in all, this world is not an easy one to stomach because it’s a world with almost no hope left.
But there are still people who have not given up. A group of thieves is planning on doing the impossible. They’re going to give hope back to the people and to do that they’re going to kill the Lord Ruler.
The Mistborn trilogy is one of the most character-driven epic fantasy novels I’ve ever read. I loved the characters and even the minor characters were complex, well written, and believable. As the novel progressed, more was revealed about each characters and I gained a greater appreciation for them, flaws and all. I became so attached to these characters. I found myself laughing and crying with them. I couldn’t help but cheer them on and hope against all hope that they’d be able to pull off this crazy plan of theirs.
Kelsier was probably my favorite even though he drove me a bit crazy. There’s so much more to his character than first meets the eye and he is so darn charismatic. And as much as I loved Kelsier, Vin stole my heart. Throughout the book I watched Vin grow from a very shy introvert to a confident powerful woman. All because of Kelsier and his band of thieves. This is very much a book that follows Vin’s coming of age. The whole band of thieves are all great in their own way and I became attached to the whole lot of them. I was especially fond of Elend and his snark. Seriously, there’s just something about him that’s endearing. I also came to love Sazed and is ability to keep everyone grounded and sane. There is much to be said about a book that focuses on all kinds of relationships between its characters and not just the romantic ones. I loved how Kelsier was always Vin’s mentor and friend and never the love interest.
Additionally, Mistborn has one of the most original and complex magic systems I ever read about. Allomancy involves ingesting certain metals and ‘burning’ them to summon magical powers that each specific metal allows. Some allomancers can only burn one metal and they’re called mistings. Those who can burn all of the metals are known as Mistborn and they’re exceedingly rare. One thing I love about this magic system is that the magic available to the user is not infinite and has its own check and balance system. Allomancers can burn completely through their metal supply and lose the ability that metal provides. But for every metal’s ability another metal has the opposite ability. The powers come in pairs – iron pulls metals towards you, while steel pushes them away. I thought it was interesting how people could ingest metals and use various powers, but that your ability to use it still depended on your strength and abilities.
The Final Empire is a book that deserves ALL of the stars! I loved everything about it – the worldbuilding, the characters, the story, the writing, the twists, the fantasy elements… EVERYTHING! It did take me a bit to get into but it was never boring. It’s a great novel that is totally worth every single one of its 647 pages!
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