Book Review: The Way of Kings

Hello dear readers, I have technically reviewed this book before on my blog, but I did the entire series in one review.

Now that the fourth book in the series; Rhythm of War (order through the link), is coming out in the fall, I knew I had to give each book the proper review it deserved.

Because of that, it’s time to review the first book in the series, The Way of Kings. I hope you enjoy because this book series is in my top three of all time.

Title: The Way of Kings
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Rating: ★★★★.5☆
Buy: The Way of Kings
Pre-order: Rhythm of War

According to mythology mankind used to live in The Tranquiline Halls. Heaven. But then the Voidbringers assaulted and captured heaven, casting out God and men. Men took root on Roshar, the world of storms. And the Voidbringers followed…

They came against man ten thousand times. To help them cope, the Almighty gave men powerful suits of armor and mystical weapons, known as Shardblades. Led by ten angelic Heralds and ten orders of knights known as Radiants, mankind finally won.

Or so the legends say. Today, the only remnants of those supposed battles are the Shardblades, the possession of which makes a man nearly invincible on the battlefield. The entire world is at war with itself – and has been for centuries since the Radiants turned against mankind. Kings strive to win more Shardblades, each secretly wishing to be the one who will finally unite all of mankind under a single throne.

On a world scoured down to the rock by terrifying hurricanes that blow through every few day a young spearman forced into the army of a Shardbearer, led to war against an enemy he doesn’t understand and doesn’t really want to fight.

What happened deep in mankind’s past?

Why did the Radiants turn against mankind, and what happened to the magic they used to wield?


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Sanderson Magic System

It’s no surprise that Brandon Sanderson is my favourite author. I love the way he can craft such beautiful worlds based off of a simple thing like a magic system.

I would say that The Way of King’s is the best of his magic systems. Not only does it affect how some of the heroes fight, which magic systems are almost always used for, but it also affects the important details of the world; money, light sources, societal class, and scientific advancement.

I love a well developed magic system when all it does is allow characters to fight, but when it literally runs the way the world works, it becomes so much more interesting.

What’s the most beautiful about this magic system is that it is simple. Yes it can be built upon and developed the more we learn about the story, but the core principles of it are as simple as 1 + 1.


A Fraction of the World

I love exploring new worlds in books. It’s one of the reasons I love reading so much.

A lot, if not all, stories have a sliver of our world in them. That might be an inspiration of a name, a location, or even an event.

There’s plenty of that in The Way of Kings, and that’s why I love it. There’s class issues, slavery, issues related to the death and punishment, women’s place in the world, and plenty more.

The fact that a story can deal with issues like that while telling an epic tale amazes me.

What’s even more wonderful is that we are only discovering a fraction of the world. We get MAYBE a tenth of the entire story, and so much is left as a mystery to us.


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Mental Health is Important

Maybe I read a very narrow scope of books that don’t talk about mental health issues (other than books specifically about it).

It’s not an issue that is common in the books I read, but The Way of Kings touched it in a nice subtle way. It doesn’t outright state that one of the main characters has any mental health issues, but you see it in the way he interacts with the world and how his mind sees everything he does.

I don’t think there’s a perfect way to tell those stories, because it is a different experience for everyone. What is important is getting the idea out there, so that other people know that it is normal, even if it isn’t the same experience that they have.


Final Thoughts

The only thing I didn’t like about The Way of Kings was that I had a bit of a hard time following along at first. It had moments later on where I literally jumped out of my seat when I was reading, but it took me a while to understand the story.

Because of that, it took me a while to really commit myself to reading it, but when I did I was hooked.


What did you think of The Way of Kings?? If you love epic fantasy it needs to be on your TBR radar. The series just continues to get better. Make sure to follow me on social media for more book reviews!
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Channel Update

Alright so I originally started this blog as a school assignment but I really started to like it and spent some free time during the term figuring out whether or not I should take the blog full time, and how I would be able to do that.

Well good news is I figured out how I can do both of those. I’ve got new ideas for the blog and plan on updating it every day, but I’m not guarenteeing anything with school going on.

So here is the updated schedule of what the posts will look like:

Monday: Book Review

Tuesday: Type it Out Tuesdays (post different writing prompts for people     interested in writing themselves)

Wednesday: Book related news (books being adapted to movies/tv shows, new books coming out, etc.)

Thursday: Thursday Thoughts (different thoughts I have on book related things ex. My Top 10s, Book related life stories, seasonal book topics, writing challenges etc.)

Friday: Quote of the Day (from the book I reviewed that week)

Saturday/Sunday: Taking a break to relax

I also have some channel updates coming out too. I want to update the books I’ve read/want to read  and throw in alphabetical shortcuts so it’s easier to find the author.

I’m also gonna make a Facebook group book club so theres an easier platform for more people to chat about a book. The book club will be one book a month to start instead of every week.

I’m also going to update some pictures and minor pages on the blog itself.

I hope everyone is as excited as I am for this update.

Book Review: Stormlight Archive 1-3

I’m gonna start by giving you all a warning…this post is probably going to be my longest post to date.  Hope you all enjoy!

So far there are 3 books in the Stormlight Archive series.

  • The Way of Kings
  • Words of Radiance
  • Oathbringer

The BEST part of these books is the world that they are in. In one book, Brandon Sanderson is able to create an entire world of fairies, apocalypse level events, mystical gods, and strange humanoid creatures, men in magical armour fighting each other (which is my favourite part of the series so far) and thats just scratching the surface.

By the end of three books we probably have 20% of the whole world, and its amazing. Now I just need to wait 2 years for the next book to come out.


Little bit of complaining below…

Something that really bothers me in some fantasy-genre books is character names. In my opinion there are 4 ways to name characters in fantasy books.

  1. Give the characters regular names of people.
  2. Give the characters unique names, that some people have.
  3. Give characters names that are obviously made up, but easy to understand and read.
  4. Give the characters names that are obviously made up but impossible to understand or pronounce.

Can you guess which one I like the most?

#3

If you’re writing about a make-believe world, DON’T USE REGULAR NAMES.

If the fantasy world ties in to the real world then fine, I’ll accept the use of somewhat irregular names.

On the other hand, don’t give me names that everyone pronounces a little differently and it takes a tweet from the author to give the actual pronunciation.

Find a good balance of normal sounding and easily pronounced names but at the same time clearly made up.

Now I know I’m not an expert and there are exceptions to my rules, but thats just my opinion.


It’s not even just the 3 books in the Stormlight Archive series  that tie in together. In fact all of Sanderson’s books are in the same “world”.

I haven’t read them all but from the research I have done the various books have the same “gods” and magical powers but are in  different realms/timelines.

Thats another aspect of this book that I love; the use of “magic”.

It’s not magic in the sense that the person shoots out spells and hexes and stuff. Instead they absorb “energy” and use the energy to perform certain abilities based off of their “class” or skill-set.

There are a few issues I have with the books. One of the main characters is really hard to like at first. They did grow on me, but it took almost the entirety of all 3 books, and I’m on the fence some days.

The other problem is it can follow too may characters sometimes. It does swap between perspectives, and gives some outside perspectives during the interludes, but sometimes we will follow a character for half of the book, and then not hear from them again.

I’m sure Sanderson has a good reason for this, and it really doesn’t take away from the story at all, just a personal preference I guess.

They’re really a masterpiece and I can’t recommend them enough to people.

Whats your favourite fantasy series? Let me know because I’m always looking for more to read!

Next weeks book is about a girl who falls in love with a number. That’s a pretty easy hint.