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Book Review: Mistborn, by Brandon Sanderson

May 8, 2012 • book-reviews, general

Mistborn, by Brandon Sanderson

Mistborn, by Brandon Sanderson, is a fantasy trilogy that takes you into a world where the characters can "burn" metals inside their bodies to give rise to certain powers, such as increased strength, the ability to push and pull other metals, an enhancement of the senses, or the most potent of all, the ability to see several seconds into the future (critical for fighting).

Mistings possess one of the nine powers; a mistborn possess all nine. (For more information, see this Allomantic Table of Metals.)

The protagonist, Vin, is a young girl, an orphan thief, who doesn't realize she possesses these mistborn powers until she meets her mentor, Kelsier. Kelsier recruits Vin along with other crew members to overthrow the Lord Ruler, a despot who maintains his power, in part, through a sharply defined class system between noblemen and skaa.

Mistborn has been one of my favorite books to listen to this year. The system of magic -- burning metals (called "Allomancy") -- gives rise to a fascinating world, one that mixes innate capabilities with class and mystery.

The Mistborn trilogy is a classic and highly regarded in the fantasy genre. It's full of action scenes, intricate plots, and compelling characters. The book is appropriate for any age. (My 10-year-old daughter listened to two of the three books.)

I hadn't really listened to fantasy novels before Mistborn. The closest book was J. R. R. Tolkein's The Hobbit. With Mistborn, I realized that I like fantasy literature. For example, after finishing the book, I decided to listen to Robert Jordan's The Eye of the World -- a series that Sanderson finished on behalf of Jordan (because Jordan died around book nine, before finishing the series).

To learn more about Mistborn, see the Mistborn page on Brandon Sanderson's site.

To listen to an audio version of Mistborn, download Mistborn from Audible.

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Tom Johnson

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