My roommate let me borrow this book as a birthday present. As much as I love fantasy, I have a weird “but I’m not that nerdy” attitude toward authors that aren’t J. R. R. Tolkien. Which is completely dumb, because I am that nerdy. Anyway, I let it sit untouched for a month, at which point my roommate said, “Um, are you ever going to read that book I gave you?” Feeling guilty, I started reading….and couldn’t stop! Mistborn is SO GOOD. It’s a high fantasy heist novel, two genres I didn’t realize need to be combined all the time!
The world of Mistborn is atmospheric (ash falls from the sky on a regular basis) and extremely intriguing. Although we don’t learn how Allomancers first received their power, not in this book at least, I am totally in love with the creativity behind these “magical” powers. Allomancers can swallow and then “burn” metals, which give them various abilities. Special Mistborn men and women can burn multiple metals at once, giving them the ability to alter peoples emotions, gain strength, or most impressive, push and pull metals around them. The ways in which characters use these abilities are increasingly creative throughout the story, and I was delighted by their creativity.
I also appreciated the…in-betweenness of the level of violence in Mistborn. People definitely die, and there are a few scenes of squeamish grossness. But this is no Game of Thrones, which I’m grateful for. I want realistic levels of death tolls in a story about war and uprisings, but I don’t want to be constantly grossed out.
I should also mention how awesome Vin is. She’s a terrified street urchiin turned fake noblewoman, both roles which help her discover her true self–a scared but bold woman who fights for those that she loves and delights in her skillset. I can’t wait to read more about her in the final two books of Sanderson’s trilogy.
Once, a hero arose to save the world. A young man with a mysterious heritage courageously challenged the darkness that strangled the land.
For a thousand years since, the world has been a wasteland of ash and mist ruled by the immortal emperor known as the Lord Ruler. Every revolt has failed miserably.
Yet somehow, hope survives. Hope that dares to dream of ending the empire and even the Lord Ruler himself. A new kind of uprising is being planned, one built around the ultimate caper, one that depends on the cunning of a brilliant criminal mastermind and the determination of an unlikely heroine, a street urchin who must learn to master Allomancy, the power of a Mistborn.
Release Date: July 2006