Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Mistborn: The Final Empire Group Read Part I

I know. It's some of the best epic fantasy out there. I should have read it years ago. My only excuse is that I am easily distracted by shiny books.

Yeah. So are you.

Thankfully, Stainless Steel Droppings provided the incentive to read Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson. Said blogger also kicked us off with this week's questions, which cover the first 6 chapters of the book.

I flew through these chapters and had to make a will-powered decision to not read the whole book in a few sittings.

Here are the questions and my answers. Stop over at Stainless Steel Droppings to see his answers and links to other participants.

1. This first hundred or so pages was packed! What things are standing out for you in the story thus far?

The ash. Ash gets everywhere. These folks must have awesome lungs to cope with the ash 24/7. And great tear ducts.

2. What are your thoughts on the magic system that Sanderson is unveiling in this novel?

I have only read 1 Sanderson book, The Way of Kings. The metal magic system in this novel reminds me of the magic system employed by the assassin in The Way of Kings - the pushing and pulling. A bit different mechanism, lots of the same results. I like it - not a criticism - and I look forward to seeing some training accidents with Vin.

3. Kelsier and Vin have held most of the spotlight in these first 6 chapters. As you compare/contrast the two characters, how do you feel about them? Likes? Dislikes?

Kelsier is very goal-oriented and would do well in modern stock market. Ruthless. Vin on the other hand is also out for herself - in a different way. She doesn't necessarily want to screw anyone over, but she is ready to flee at the next ashfall. I like how she was setting flatbread aside.

4. Finally, how would you assess Sanderson's storytelling abilities to this point?

He just sucks you in, doesn't he? Who cares if I got goats birthing in the field, I want to read my damn book!

Other thoughts:

The different metals can be used for different powers - this is way cool.
Kelsier has a soft spot for women in trouble - may turn annoying. We'll have to see if his chivalry is just overprotective chauvinism.
Way curious about Marsh. He seems pretty pissed about the whole situation.
I am guessing those little bits before each chapter are important. Perhaps the future voice of Vin?


  1. One thing that I think is interesting is Sanderson has mentioned before that Way of Kings and Mistborn are set in the same universe, albeit different planets, which might be part of why the two magical systems are so similar.

    I'm wondering if the ash has anything to do with the events that set up the Lord Ruler as the supreme leader; if he's overthrown, will the world be healed and become healthier and less ashy?

  2. Yes, I was wondering about the ash.  Where is it all coming from really?  I'm surprised that there's standing room for the people any longer!  Where does it all go to?
    I am sucked in, I thought the first few chapters were great and it was difficult to put down.
    Lynn :D

  3. ooooo! That little tidbit about them being in the same universe is cool! that could explain alot. 

  4. Oh I didn't know that he said that.  Cool and good to know.  I like that the magical systems are similar.  It helps anchor the story a little for me.  

    Yes he does suck you in.  I had a hard time setting it down so I can keep the same pace as the group.  And I would love to see Kelsier take on the stock market!  

  5. Having had bits of my town burnt twice since graduating highschool, ash gets every where. I also wonder where it all goes..... I am glad there are some basic mysteries for us to figure out as we go along. My book has a map that shows the ashmounts - sources of the ash. 

  6. I too had heard that Sanderson said that all of his novels essentially inhabit the same overall universe.  I've also heard that there are some crossover characters on occasion.  Will be interesting to see if that is the case.

    The ash is hard NOT to think about.  Although I still cannot quite picture it as I'm reading, probably because the very idea bothers me.  The mess!

    I completely agree with you about how Szeth works magic in The Way of Kings.  You can really see some parallels there.

    Kelsier's motivations certainly seem different than Vin's.  Although he was possible forced into taking action by the circumstances he found himself in, he seems a little more focused and has a purpose whereas Vin still seems to be reeling from her brother's betrayal and the victimization she has found herself under.  It will be interesting to see how/if she takes charge of her life now that she has had some revelation about what she is.

    What, you can't play birthing coach to goats and read at the same time?!?!  Come on!!! :)

  7. Not with a library book. Tis very messy. 

  8. That's the one thing I dislike about e-books: the maps are rubbish, if you can find them at all . . . *dashes off to try to find said map on her Kindle*

  9. That is a really good question! What if the Lord Ruler is actually keeping the ash mounts under control and it actually gets worse when they kick him out???? 

  10. I was thinking future voice of Kelsier, interestingly enough. :D

    The flatbread scene was one of my favorites too.

  11. I thought that too! Regarding the awesome lungs the people must have.

    I did not make the connection with the "pushing and pulling" with this book and The Way of Kings but now that you mentioned it, I see it.

    I, too, am quite curious about Marsh.

  12. I've just changed to thinking that it's future voice of Vin too. We'll see!

  13. It will be interesting to see whose voice that is.... and what other food itemśsurvival bits Vin sets aside.

  14.  Marsh seems to be very important and I look forward to finding out why.

  15. It’s one thing I really enjoy about Sanderson’s writing - you don’t get all the answers up front.