Book Reviews

Oathbringer – Triumph, and Yet…

My husband introduced me to Brandon Sanderson’s work; he started with The Way of Kings. Unfortunately, he introduced this landmark novel to me while I was working on my MA, so I was unable to give it the full attention that it certainly deserves. However, I knew enough to understand just how much I loved Roshar and its characters.

Words of Radiance did not disappoint; beginning to end, it was a cavalcade of action, intrigue, and deeply enveloping plot. Sanderson is certainly one of my favorite authors, and I am in the process of trying to get my greedy hands on all of his works.

I finished Oathbringer a couple of days ago, and I held off saying anything about it because I was not quite sure how I felt about it. I am still not, to be perfectly honest. This is not to say it is a “bad” book by any stretch of the imagination; rather…I feel as if it did not quite live up to the quality of Sanderson that I have come to love.

My primary hesitance comes with the latter half of the book (really, the last 1/3). Sanderson is renown for his ability to shake up the known and introduce ideas that are wholly unique to the saturated fantasy world. However, as Oathbringer came to a close, I felt as if the story had suddenly taken a turn so fantastic that it was truly unbelievable. The first two books set up a world that one could embrace and fall into, full with unique cultural customs (the idea of a “safehand”) and intriguing mystical creatures (the spren). This third installment seemed to go a step further, creating gods out of men and making certain characters invincible, if not immortal. It was…strange, to say the least.

Do not get me wrong: Sanderson’s style remains intact. I love the way he writes. Hell, I envy the way he writes. But the ideas introduced in this novel made me hesitate. Not balk, but pause.

Oathbringer, indeed, all of the Stormlight Archive, are well worth the time and energy to read fully and enjoy moreso. I still enjoyed Oathbringer, but I am curious where the story will turn next.

(Disclaimer: I am not being paid for this review, and, of course, I do not own any characters or rights to any of Sanderson’s wonderful works.)


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