Thursday, 30 December 2010

FANTASY REVIEW: Stormlight Archives 1: The Way of Kings - Brandon Sanderson

Release Date: 30/12/10


According to mythology mankind used to live in The Tranquiline Halls. Heaven. But then the Voidbringers assaulted and captured heaven, casting out God and men. Men took root on Roshar, the world of storms. And the Voidbringers followed . . . They came against man ten thousand times. To help them cope, the Almighty gave men powerful suits of armor and mystical weapons, known as Shardblades. Led by ten angelic Heralds and ten orders of knights known as Radiants, mankind finally won. Or so the legends say. Today, the only remnants of those supposed battles are the Shardblades, the possession of which makes a man nearly invincible on the battlefield. The entire world is at war with itself - and has been for centuries since the Radiants turned against mankind. Kings strive to win more Shardblades, each secretly wishing to be the one who will finally unite all of mankind under a single throne. On a world scoured down to the rock by terrifying hurricanes that blow through every few day a young spearman forced into the army of a Shardbearer, led to war against an enemy he doesn't understand and doesn't really want to fight. What happened deep in mankind's past? Why did the Radiants turn against mankind, and what happened to the magic they used to wield?


With all the time that this author is devoting to finishing the Wheel of Time, it’s a surprise that he has the time let alone the energy to create a new title of his own. Yet here, just before years end, is a brand new series by Brandon that just leaps from the pages into the readers imagination.

Within this book you get a story of adventure, of discovery and of mystery in a world that has been epically built. Whilst parts may seem a little strange, it’s the myriad of characters (both main and secondary) that demonstrates not only Brandon’s skill at weaving a tale but creating a world that the reader will just love to spend time in. Whilst most first novels in a new series are devoted more to world building and allowing the reader to get to grips with it, this one throws you in at the deep end and with a rather steep learning curve. It’s definitely creative, it’s definitely got something unique and demonstrates why this author has been allowed to finish the vision of Jordan’s world.

All in, Brandon is perhaps one of the most creative fantasy writers of the moment and with many other the epic series winding down, is definitely offering the readers a choice of a new selection of heroes to follow in a magical world of his own. A real treat and with the way that the weathers set in, perhaps one of the best ways to see the new year in. Great stuff.

1 comment:

Pat Hollett said...

Now this is a story type I've never read before. It does sound interesting, especially after reading your review. A very insightful review! Thanks :)