Book Review: Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson (4 stars)

Words of Radiance (The Stormlight Archive #2) by Brandon Sanderson

(4 out of 5 stars)

“Expectation is not just about what people expected of you. It was about what you expected of yourself.”
Much better than The Way of Kings (The Stormlight Archive #1), but still not quite a five. This is a coherent story, for one thing. Still a large, rambling cast–many with a full array of foibles and strengths. Everyone is flawed; some fatally so. Way too much back story on Shallan. (All the better to hide a plot reversal in.)

But with this book we get a better sense of a fully realized history, mythology and even language. Logical, consistent idioms, for example, which is rare. Some appropriate humor. “I’m so pure I practically belch rainbows.”

The pace is glacial, often consuming hundreds of pages to cover a day. Kind of a verbal strip tease. Enough time for philosophizing and reflection–by the characters as well as the author. Fool: “a person who ignored information because it disagreed with desired results.”

A good read. I may read more. Still can’t see how this can go one for ten volumes without pulling a Robert Jordan. (Sanderson, of all people, should be aware of that danger.)

“All stories told have been told before. We tell them to ourselves.”