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I liked the book, but felt it was lacking compared to the first two volumes. A lot of the story seemed 'filler' and necessarily drawn out while waiting for other things to happen. Don't get me wrong there are a lot of great things about this book, especially with developing and delving deeper into the Stormlight world.
Just felt it left me 'wanting' for things to happen that didn't. I guess we'll be seeing these things happen in future Stormlight volumes, but still.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
When an author produces an audiobook of almost 50 hours in length and it's excellent from start to finish that's a hell of an achievement. When he releases a second such behemoth in the same series and it's just as good I'd label that as outstanding. Mr Sanderson of course thinks even bigger than that, he's apparently planning ten of these incredible publications! He really does put the epic into epic fantasy.
It's amazing to me that he has now produced three such excellent fantasy novels in his Stormlight Archive. If this author can complete this incredible work to such a high standard I would say he's knocking on the door of being considered one of the great authors! Maybe I'm biased but the scale of the achievement would be immense. The sheer depth of the world-builidng (geography, flora, fauna, politics etc), characters and the magic system is mind-numbing.
The narration is excellent from the usual duo with particular kudos to Michael Kramer. The sheer depth of the writing, involvement with the characters and Michael's superb delivery produced some genuinely breathtaking moments. At one point when news of a huge setback arrived I felt like I was standing next to Dalinar in that meeting chamber myself. Shivers down the spine.
Not surprisingly given the title Dalinar is a significant focus in this book and his back story is particularly effective and hard-hitting. He is a magnificent character of flawed nobility. Shallan also gets a lot of focus and I enjoyed her struggles with multiple personae.
Given all that I couldn't give this book anything but five stars but now for what feels almost like a bit of heresy. It is my least favourite of the three to date. I do love the fact that Sanderson tries to cover so many POVs in incredible depth, how he fleshes out the back stories and gives so much colour to his world. However, it does mean that the main story moves at an almost glacial pace and often just as it seemed that great things were occurring it would get sidetracked. I do actually think that this book could have done with a tighter edit, possibly around a 10 per cent trim to help it keep greater forward momentum. It just felt a little unbalanced to me especially as Kaladin my favourite character takes a step aside for much of this one. In many ways this volume feels like its purpose was to build a massive platform from which to really launch the main story line towards a spectacular conclusion over the remaining books. In that light I genuinely believe that this is on course to become one of the all-time great series.
If you are new to the Stormlight Archive please don't try and start here, there really is too much fantastic background and much of the nuance of this text will be lost to you resulting in a much drier experience.
So bravo Mr Sanderson. You truly are on track to produce one of the greatest fantasy literary achievements of all time. The challenge for me is living long enough to see the end of it!
33 of 37 people found this review helpful
Wow! Another epic instalment to an epic story.
I had this on pre-order for months, and then took my time listening to it. I didn't want to miss anything....if you're a fan of the Stormlight Archive, this another instalment to savour. Sanderson at his epic best!
So much has happened since Book 1, that there is no way a newcomer to Stormlight could pick things up at this point. There are references to previous events, but this book isn't bogged down by rehashing what has gone before. At one point, I felt as if we were entering "padding it out" territory (my pet hate when it comes to books in a series), but when I stopped to consider, I realised that I was suffering instalment compression - and the action I was attributing to a previous book had actually happened in this book.....bottom line, there's a lot going on, and this book seamlessly picks up from the previous and the plots just thicken, and twist, and the characters develop even more depth etc. There might have been a few of scenes / areas which I didn't think particularly stacked, but not enough to even remotely damage my overall enjoyment of this book. (eg, I haven't quite got my head around Shadesmar and how humans and spren can be living there? A Google search shows there are better minds out there than mine who have explored this - perhaps I shall spend a few indulgent hours exploring this further)
What I always appreciate about these instalments is that each wraps itself up neatly. With Oathbringer too. Yes, there is more to come, and there are some nice hooks left open with new questions raised at the end, but I've not been left on a precipice in angst about who lives or dies. It's so clearly part of a longer story, but is completely satisfying in itself as an instalment. Thank you Mr Sanderson!!
I don't want to give too much away with this review. Besides I couldn't do it justice anyway. Instead, I will just say that if you're a Sanderson or Stormlight fan, you are unlikely to be disappointed. I am ready to put the next book on pre-order.......
(Narration also consistent with previous books which, if you're listening to them back to back, is important).
10 of 11 people found this review helpful
Such an amazing third novel. If you liked the first two books you'll love this one more. We see further character development and more plots and twists. The narration by Michael and Kate completes the package here.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful
It is certainly long and slow, but what a well written book overall. Such a great development for the series and the Cosmere in general.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful