Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Mistborn: The Final Empire Group Read Part III

This week covered Chapters 17-24 of Mistborn: The Final Empire. This section was chalked full of so much good stuff. Grace over at Books Without Any Pictures provided this week's questions, so be sure to stop by her site to see her answers. Once again, a big thanks to Stainless Steel Droppings for putting this group read together. Check out his site to see who else is playing.  Haven't seen a map of this world yet? Check out a map of the Dominances, plus of Luthadel over at the artist Isaac Stewart's site.


1.  During the past week there's been a lot of speculation as to the quotes at the beginning of each chapter.  Now that we finally know the answer, does it change anyone's opinions of the Lord Ruler?

It has me wondering if the current Lord Ruler is the same guy who wrote the diary ~1000 years ago. The current Lord Ruler could be a figure head only, a myth perpetuated by the obligators and inquisitors, or the same body but a possessed soul. So far, we haven't seen the Lord Ruler do any amazing feats with his mystical powers. Someone might be putting on a very convincing show, like Kelsier puts on a very convincing show.

2.  What did you think of Elend's group of subversive nobles?  Do you think that Kelsier is right to dismiss people who could be potential allies, or is this another case of his anti-nobility biases showing?

Kelsier needs all the allies he can get; however I have to wonder if he plans to kill all nobles in some bloody French-like revolution. Of course, it appears that all Allomancers have some noble blood within 5 generations. So who is Kelsier's progenitor?

3.  What's your favorite part of the book so far?

Vin trying to hold her temper and curiosity in check - with Sazed (the blunder finding out he is a eunuch), with the nobles (a mouthy with Lady Shan), and Soothing Marsh to pry more info out of him. She keeps bouncing back and forth between the old Vin (who watches everything and says little) to the new Vin (who is interactive, but doesn't have a whole lot of practical social experience).

4.  Now that Kelsier's plan has hit some major stumbling blocks, what do you think will happen next?  Do you think he can still succeed in defeating the Lord Ruler?

We still have over 2 books to go in this trilogy. I have a fear that Kelsier is far more like the Lord Ruler than he would be comfortable as and he just might stumble into the role as the Next Lord Ruler.

Bonus:  For anyone who has read "The Way of Kings," were you surprised at all to see Hoid pop up?  What do you think of his role here?
Haha! Wasn't that cool? It was a WTF moment for me. Snuck right up on me. 'Informant' seems to be a perfect role for him to do whatever he needs to do.

Other Things of Interest:
Elend's book collection - definitely a source for blackmail (by Vin or Lady Shan).
Very interested in learning more about Feruchemists and the history of the Terrismen.
These impending House Wars that Kelsier is stirring up - how messy is that going to get?
Kelsier's callous take on potentially killing Elend to perpetuate tension between the Great Houses is cold, calculating, and practical all at once.
I want to know more about Marsh, his attachment to Mare, and his hatred of the obligators.
Vin's reveal about her baby sister was a bit startling, but explained chunks of her personality.

Future Schedule:
Part 4: Chapter 25 through Chapter 34, Discussions posted Wed. May 2nd. Part 5: Chapter 35 to The End, Discussions posted Wed. May 9th.

20 comments:

  1. Poor Vin... she's so socially awkward, but her awkwardness and mishaps reveal to us a lot about the larger world.  It's interesting to see how she's developed over time from not even being able to trust Kelsier and his crew to having a crush on Elend and flirting with him.  I'm curious about his books and want to see more of what's in them.

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  2.  Other than politically uncool books, I wonder if he reads anything fun? Surely they have dirty limericks at Luthadel.
    It will be interesting to see what Sanderson does with Vin by the end of the series. Looking forward to it.

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  3. So, could the Lord Ruler and Kelsier be more alike than we thought?  Both have created legends around themselves and now both are trying to live up to them.  The Lord Ruler has an advantage of having thousand of years for his reputation to build, grow and be supported by the ruling system of this world. Kelsier seems to be in a hurry to gain that same thing and is finding out there are consequences to his impatience. 

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  4.  The legends surrounding the Lord Ruler are interesting - like the numerous attempts to kill him and he surviving horrendous injuries (like all-over body burns, etc.). Fact or fiction? A bit of both is my guess.

    Kell is doing the same thing and that is one aspect that has me concerned that we might see The Next Lord Ruler by the end of the trilogy.

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  5. First off, thanks for the link to the maps, that is great!

    I keep getting a Wizard of Oz feel about the Lord Ruler too, that maybe at some point we'll see behind the curtain and see that there has been something perpetuated for years and years.

    Yes, I think at some point Kelsier will have to reassess his narrow-minded view of the nobles, not the least of which is that he is part noble himself. 

    I do like watching the struggle Vin is going through as her character is evolving as it makes for good reading.  It is also encouraging that there will continue to be really good character growth during the trilogy.  Vin has been a very interesting character for the reader to interact with.  More often than not I feel like she is our best conduit to what is going on, that she is more of the eyes for the reader than anyone else.

    There were some great revelations about Vin, Kelsier and Sazed in this section of the book.  It felt like their complexity grew exponentially in this set of chapters.  And I'm loving that. 

    Kelsier definitely seems as flawed as what we've seen about the Lord Ruler in his journal entries, which means that he could end up being as much of a problem as a solution as the story unfolds.

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  6. I also wonder if the Lord Ruler is the original Lord Ruler...this whole living for hundreds of years isn't working with me.  What can I say, I'm a skeptic.  I like your theory that Kelsier and the Lord Ruler have more in common than Kelsier would like to admit.  I need to keep that in the back of my mind when I continue the reading.  

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  7. This Lord Ruler is very intriguing.  Considering how feared and abhored he is you would think he might put in the occasional appearance, a scary display of some sort but he just seems to be hidden behind his own myths.  I can't wait to find out more about him - all sorts of wild theories are running through my brain, maybe he's a machine, maybe he's able to regenerate or sort of clone, maybe he's got some sort of eternal flames burning in his secret room - a bit like She Who Must be Obeyed - maybe that's where all the ash is from.  Maybe he's a sparkly vampire who never dies!  LOL
    I'm gagging to find out!!!
    Lynn :D

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  8.  I also like the reveals on some of the minor characters - Marsh and Ham. It made them more real for me and sucked me even further into the story. Now I feel like I have an idea of everyone's motivations and I am ready to start pondering The Deepness and other large things.

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  9. Puppet governments - everyone wants one and the easiest way to get one is build a legend around one highly skilled dude and then quietly kill him off and perpetuate the myth of immortality. 

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  10.  He doesn't act like a sparkly vampire - no tree climbing, attending school, or baseball. In light of that, i would lean more towards the machine or clone theory.

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  11. That part of Vin's history, about her sister, was really awful! I do like the way she weasled information out of Marsh, though. Marsh is one character I really would like to get to know better.

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  12.  While I like knowing more abut Marsh, I was right there with him being ticked Vin manipulated him. Even tho she did it for innocent reasons, that's not cool. She doesn't really know how to treat friends, since she hasn't had any, and I hope that admonishment from Marsh helps her set a boundary on whether or not to manipulate the emotions of others.

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  13. I am going to be very disappointed if it is all smoke and mirrors like the wizard of Oz . . . :D

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  14. I wonder if he has seen previous generations of these groups of young nobles who sit about talking revolution but ultimately do nothing?

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  15. That's why I'm sure that the diary entries are drawing the parallels between the two: I just hope that Kel can stop himself from making the same mistakes and becoming evil.

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  16.  Me too. I have to wonder, but I would like some pyrotechnics from the Lord Ruler before this book is over.

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  17. I agree (puts me in mind of Sookie in Trueblood reading her friend''s minds without their knowledge - very naughty!)  I hope she learns her lesson.  It's a bit like being a witch - she could just manipulate somebody into liking her - who needs a love potion?
    Lynn :D

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  18. Ha! i think I'll just stop having theories - I'm going round in ever decreasing circles.
    Lynn :D

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  19. The difference for me at the moment is that prior to the Lord Ruler there seemed to be some kind of prophecy about a saviour - and the LR just 'fitted' himself into that role.  I'm not sure if it was him.  Maybe the world as they know it was always going to have mists, etc, and the saviour would banish them - which would mean the Lord Ruler was not what the prophecy predicted (because the mists are still there).  With Kelsier, there isn't any prophecies, he's creating his own legent as he goes along - so maybe he was the original saviour, perhaps he's going to be the one to save them somehow.  I can see the parallels and that maybe Sanderson wants you to assume that Kelsier is bad but I'm not feeling that personally, although sometimes I think he needs holding back.
    Lynn :D

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