I have to admit that I started this book without any expectations at all (while I’ve since read quite a bit of Brandon Sanderson, at the time I had not known any of his work). As a big SciFi and Fantasy fan I have read many more series, authors and books that aren’t worth any further consideration but every now and then an author surprises you with the quality of their writing and their “world building” and you just completely get hooked by them. This series is one of the better ones!
There are definitely some things that aren’t complete in this series, however overall the idea, concept and completion is really well done. While generally you cannot compare books to TV shows – the concept of filler episodes/chapters definitely apply in many instances. Fortunately this is not the case with regards to Mistborn and it is obvious that Sanderson has planned the story out from start to end and uses the words to build the middle vs. just muddling along and “seeing” where the story takes us.
Mistborn: The Final Empire
What do you do when the good guys lose?
This is the premise to the whole Mistborn series – while the Lord Ruler was meant to be the prophesied hero of the ages and rescued the world from some sort of evil – we learn in this book that in truth, the man who became the Lord Ruler was in reality NOT the one who was meant to get that power.
In Mistborn – The Final Empire the world is a dark and dangerous place. The Lord Ruler has absolute power and dominion over the land and any rebellion is put down with ruthless efficiency. It is up to a small handful of rebels to make a difference – to change the world and restore normalcy to the land. However when a god is in charge and has been for 1000 years the chances of success are small to slim.
The novel takes place mainly in the city of Luthadel and the lands surrounding it. Luthadel is a city harshly divided into an upper and lower class; a government rules with an iron fist over the nobility and the lower class “skaa”. The differences between the Nobles (those who control the power of Allomancy) and the Skaa – the slaves of the Final Empire are extremely evident in this novel and while some of the other races are covered off they are given a lot more depth in later novels where they are explored and expanded to a much greater depth. This book is primarily about the Skaa and Vin and Kelsier.
The way in which the players in the game utilize their power and “magic” is really well explored and the fact that this power is not “unlimited” but rather has limits that make sense. If the user of the magic “burns” up his or her resource, they have no more and the care, storage and “pairings” of the different elements and metals are key.