Book Review

Shadows of Self

Similar to “Alloy of Law,” I don’t really have any strong feelings about “Shadows of Self,” by Brandon Sanderson.  I don’t know, maybe once I start writing about it, I’ll figure out what’s going through my head. 😛

The characters of Wax and Wayne are intriguing and humorous to follow, and the setting is a fascinating steam-punk city with big-city problems… but the plot seemed a bit lacking.  There were definitely more mini-climaxes and crazy subplots than “Alloy of Law,” (which meant it felt more like a classic Sanderson to me).  Funny enough, you’d be MUCH more confused if you haven’t read the Mistborn trilogy than if you haven’t read “Alloy of Law.”  It made a few comparisons to “Mistborn,” and it seemed to be following the opposite concept of “how do you stop an all-powerful person from overthrowing a human government?”  Even still, it didn’t seem to grip me like his others.  Maybe because it could have explained more about what would happen if they lost, about the consequences of failure?  They felt a little vague and left a looser tensity.

Also, there didn’t seem to be a lead for the next book.  The story’s context tells how Sanderson couldn’t finish this book until he nearly finished the next one.  I can see how a big revelation at the end of this book could influence a sequel, but from what I’ve read about “Bands of Mourning,” it’s on a completely different plot….  So, it’s more like a TV detective series, where each book is an episode of a larger scheme.  There’s the over-arching main villain, but each book is a different case that kind of ties into the whole series arc.

With all that in mind, I give it a proper ***3 Stars***.  It’s not bad, and I might read it again, but I’m waiting to see how the rest of the series plays out.

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