The Hero of Ages

Brandon Sanderson

Published October 14th, 2008

Mistborn Trilogy #3

I am going to just start this ‘review’ off on the weird foot by being as blunt and honest as possible: Not since reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows for the first time, have I had such a lasting and intense book hangover than I have been suffering since I finished The Hero of Ages.  It is mid December and I have read a grand total of 76 pages so far this month.  All other books just taste like ash in my mouth (figuratively speaking, I mean obviously I’m not actually eating them) and I am wondering if anything will ever live up to this series ever again…

It is really hard to review a book like this, because not only do I not want to spoil anything: I don’t even want to leave you with any HINTS.  So, instead of a traditional review, I am just going to make an obnoxious list on all of the reasons why you should read the Mistborn Trilogy if you haven’t yet.

  1. In the name of all things holy MY GAWD Brandon Sanderson does some amazing character development throughout this series.
  2. Vin, our main protagonist, is a bad-ass female warrior who discovers who she is and who she wants to be throughout the course of the three books.  She is realistically flawed yet commands every scene she appears in… and it all reads so NATURALLY, nothing is forced.  photo-nov-25-09-17-37
  3. There is a tinge of romance but NEVER does it cloud over any other aspect of the story line.
  4. There are never any *swooning* scenes THANK YOU BSAND because those would be so out-of-place against the dismal reality the characters find themselves living in.
  5. The magic system is UNREAL.  It is so extensive yet described so well that there was never any lingering confusion.
  6. Never do you get the impression that Sanderson is “just making things up as he goes”.  The world building is AIR TIGHT and you will find that you want to kick yourself in the face for not picking up on clues earlier than the last 90 pages.
  7. This book will make you FEEL things.  Enough said.
  8. Even if you’re not in love with how the story ends, you still cannot help but be satisfied because DAMN everything comes together so spectacularly.  Sanderson leaves no loose ends untied; the man is a genius.

Now it wouldn’t be fair if I ignored the few minor flaws that I had with The Hero of Ages, especially after all that flailing that just occurred.  But honestly, when I say “the few minor flaws” I really just mean the sole reason this book wasn’t my favorite in the trilogy, because there is only one aspect that bothered me.

mistborn-dresser-angleThe Hero of Ages was not as action packed as the previous two books in the series.  At least, not the first 450 pages.  There is a lot of groundwork being laid for the grand finale, (without you really realizing is actually the groundwork) and GOOD LORD there is so much despair.  The world that Sanderson created wasn’t just crumbling around all of these characters that I had grown to love, it was straight up going to shit.  Even with all of the different POVs, even with all of these characters far-flung to different locations, all with their different agendas, one thing remained a constant: the despair.  It is hard to read about so much sadness and defeat, especially if you cannot see or predict how everything is going to wrap up.  I was looking forward to the end because I was in such TURMOIL.  My emotions were spread too thin, I was growing frantic.

There was also a lot of misdirection which kept me guessing RIGHT up until the very end.  I had no idea how Sanderson was going to tie a bow on the series as a whole, and with 100 pages left I was growing increasingly concerned.  Have I mentioned the despair, the feelings of helplessness?  Because those feelings eked out of these pages and into my heart.  I was/am still a mess.

I am clearly not as good of a writer as Sanderson (even though we share a last name), so I am not sure how to end this ‘review’.  I really don’t know what else to say (or feel), about this absolutely mind-blowing series other than: if you haven’t read it, you need to hop on the bandwagon.  Do not be intimidated by the size of these books, every single word is worth it.



3 thoughts on “The Hero of Ages

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