Thursday, April 21, 2011

I just finished The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson.

This is another excellent fantasy work by Sanderson.  Not as good as the Mistborn books or Elantris, but as good as Warbreaker.   It uses what are becoming very standard themes and elements from Sanderson - complex new magical system, oppressive hierarchical system, noble commoners, but pushed further than other books.  A lot of fantasy books , including some of Sandersons, are slight variations on standard medieval type fantasy worlds.  This book is a very different world, with different plants, races, weather, etc.

There are two negatives about this book.  First, it is huge - over 1000 pages in hardcover.  Not sure how they will even manufacture a paperback version.  Second, it is the first book in a planned ten novel series.  Given the history of other epic fantasy series (Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time was planned for six books but ended up being thirteen.  George R.R. Martin's Song of Fire and Ice was planned as a trilogy, is now planned as a seven book series).  Since the frustrations of seeing Martin's series bog down in slow moving book after book with no end in sight, I've tried to avoid starting large series that aren't finished.  I only made an exception in this case because Sanderson's books are so enjoyable.