Author: Brandon Sanderson
Publisher: Tor Fantasy
For years the Lord Ruler has held his subjects captive in terror. No one dares venture out into the mists, and most people try to lay low and not be noticed. Vin has always lived this way. Her brother taught her to trust no one—not even him. When he does leave, Vin is left to fend for herself. She meets Kelsier, a charismatic thief that has grander plans than to just steal from a noble. She joins his band of misfits and together they plot to change the world as everyone knows it.
When I picked up this book, I was in the worst reading slump. Lately, I feel like I am too tired to read, too ill to read from allergies, or just too darn busy! So many people have told me about this book over the last few years that I was alternately very excited and very leery about reading it. Typically, when people gush about a book like all my friends have about this one, I am a little disappointed once I do sit down to read it. Not so with this book. I found myself wanting to call in sick to work just so I could read (Note to Boss: I did not call in sick while reading this book…I promise!). The story is engrossing; the world building is excellent, and the characters were interestingly written. I grew to care about Vin and Kelsier as well as a few of the other characters like Kelsier’s brother, Marsh and Sazed, the eunuch.
The magic system in the book was fun. Mistings and Mistborns could drink concoctions with different metals and then burn them to get special abilities including enhanced vision, the ability to “push” physically, riot emotions, and others. I don’t want to spoil all the fun for those of you that might be interested in this book. Suffice to say that I wanted to be a mistborn after I read this book. I want some of those abilities! Life would be so much more interesting with a little fantastical magic!
As far as characters go, Vin is one of the better female characters I’ve read for some time. She’s young, but strong and capable. I like that she is flawed and goes through a little bit of teenage angst in the book (but not much…I couldn’t take that). She’s an extremely likable character and is reminiscent of Arya in the Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin. I like young women in literature that are good examples, but also not cookie cutter strong women. I like a little bit of flawed character in books and I think Vin fits that mold. Kelsier is also interesting to read about because you never quite know what his motivations are. I like the having to guess about what his next move is. I also like his interactions with the crew. While they are very secondary in the story with the exception of a few like Sazed who tends to Vin as she becomes more involved in the gang, they are all really fun to read about and have distinct personalities.
I will say for all you readers who don’t typically read book series, this book does end with a definite pause. You will be wanting to pick up the next book immediately to see how it unfolds. The Lord Ruler is definitely a multi-faceted character that lets some information fly in the book which will make you want to continue. If you are not a series reader, I would still challenge you to try this one because it is simply a fantastic read and one that got me out of my reading slump and excited about picking up a book again. Brandon Sanderson is an engaging writer that not only writes good plot but also builds an interesting world and characters to go with it. I will definitely be reading his entire catalog.