The Hero of the Ages Caps Brandon Sanderson’s Best Series

Brandon Sanderson completes the series that put him on the map with The Hero of the Ages, book 3 in his Mistborn trilogy.  To my mind, the Mistborn trilogy represents Sanderson’s best work, exceeding his more ambitious efforts in The Stormlight Archive.

The Hero of the Ages starts with Vin and Elend using instructions left by the Lord Ruler to track down massive supply caches while Ruin, her, ruins the world around them.  They start to notice patterns in the world, among a lot of other worldbuilding.  Especially notable is explanation of the world’s third magic system, hemalurgy.

I mentioned in my review of book 2 and in my post comparing it with The Last Jedi that the setup in The Well of Ascension puts a lot of pressure on the third act in the story.  The jury remains out on Star Wars Episode IX, but Sanderson absolutely comes through here.  You can break your protagonist all the way down, get so bleak that the protag’s own actions make things much worse, but you have to come back and fix it.

I haven’t talked yet about the snippets that Sanderson adds at the beginning of each chapter in all three books.  The snippets in the first two books are abstruse and only make sense after things are revealed at the end of the book.  Sanderson drops that convention here in favor of pure infodumps.  It works, because Sanderson knows his business, and worldbuilding is a large part of why we’re here, innit?

I picked up the Mistborn trilogy for a few reasons.  One was to learn more about Sandersons’ Cosmere—his shared universe in which many of his series are set.  Another, closely related, was to better acquaint myself with the Cosmere prior to reading Oathbringer.  After reading both, Warbreaker would have been the better Cosmere book to read.  The third and final reason was because I already read the next two Mistborn books, The Alloy of Law and Shadows of Self, and I thought I needed to go back and read the first trilogy before continuing on.  Two out of three ain’t bad.

5 of 5 Stars.

About H.P.

Blogs on books at Every Day Should Be Tuesday (speculative fiction) and Hillbilly Highways (country noir and nonfiction). https://everydayshouldbetuesday.wordpress.com/ https://hillbillyhighways.wordpress.com/
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4 Responses to The Hero of the Ages Caps Brandon Sanderson’s Best Series

  1. Bookstooge says:

    Good stuff 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ll agree that the Mistborn trilogy is Sanderson’s best stuff– mostly ’cause I bounced off of The Stormlight Archive pretty hard, and ’cause Steelheart is honestly one of the worst books I’ve read in awhile.

    Still, with this third one, I couldn’t help but find some rather … uh, ‘interesting’ themes there. Namely (SPOILER ALERT YOU’VE BEEN WARNED QUIT NOW ‘CAUSE I DUNNO HOW TO DO SPOILER TAGS ON WORDPRESS)

    … the whole thing with a eunuch creator/savior God. Like, it makes sense in the context of the book, but the underlying thematics of a purposefully sexless creator make for an … odd reading. Especially when (MORE SPOILERS KINDA) this pops up again in the second Alloy of Law book– I’m sure everything comes together one way or another in the third one, but I haven’t bothered reading it yet.

    Liked by 1 person

    • H.P. says:

      Part of the reason I read this series is because I picked up Alloy of Law just because a Western with magic sounded awesome. And it was! And I didn’t need to know anything about the Cosmere and the first trilogy. And then I picked up Shadows of Self and all of the sudden I had no idea what Sanderson was writing about.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: May 2018 Month-in-Review | Every Day Should Be Tuesday

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