Author: Brandon Sanderson
Genre: High Fantasy
Length: 392 Pages
Release: January 2011
My Rating: 5/5 Stars
With the release of Shadows of Self coming up in October I decided to reread The Alloy of Law (I've been buddy reading the original trilogy and doing discussion posts as well). I wanted to make sure I was up to date on everything going into book two and I'm very glad I did read it over.
It's been almost two years since my original reading and I had forgotten so much. I remember loving it the first time around, but I don't remember appreciating it nearly as much.
Sanderson has taken the world introduced in the original Mistborn trilogy and moved it forward in time 300 years. You get to see the way that society has evolved, how the original characters shaped the current world (there are tons of connections), and how the magic has morphed over time. You also get to see how the magic is influenced or changed by technological advances as there are guns, trains, and electricity now. It's like a gun slinging western set in a fantasy world with a fascinating magic system. Very cool.
So let me hit some highlights. The magic system is amazing. Allomancy and Feruchemy have merged now that there is inter marriage between the Terris people and the nobility. Mistborns are part of myth now and only mistings remain (as well as Twinborn, individuals with both an Allomantic ability and a Feruchemy ability). You might imagine that the fighting and action can't be as exciting without Mistborns using all the Allomantic powers, but you would be wrong. Seriously, I don't want to get too deep and give away all of the best parts of the book, but the fighting scenes are sometimes even better than in the original books.
Now onto the characters. Waxillium Ladrian (a descendent of Breeze) is a forty something lawman who fled the city many years ago. Now his past has called him back. Wax is a seriously awesome character. He's almost a mix of every single main character from the original books, it's amazing. We don't know much about what life was like for him growing up, but we do get glimpses into what he was doing in the roughs.
Wax's trusty sidekick Wayne is possibly my favorite character (though it's difficult to choose). He's funny, loyal, and often wise (even though he doesn't always intend to be). He and Wax are like brothers and work extremely well together. Relationships are something that make Sanderson's books really stand out. And this is definitely a great relationship.
Marasi is a noble lady studying law at the university. She's very different than Vin (the only real female lead in the original trilogy), but strong in her own right. She's smart, kind, and brave. We don't get in her head too much, but I hope to see more of her in book two.
The rest of the characters are fascinating on their own. The villains are complex, as usual. The plot is not as complex or involved as many of Sanderson's other novels, but that doesn't diminish the quality of the story. It's a lighter read than the original three, but has a great set up for the rest of the series. Another brilliant book in the world of the Cosmere.