Friday, September 23, 2016

The Dark Talent~Brandon Sanderson | Review

Title: The Dark Talent (Alcatraz Vs the Evil Librarians #5)
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy
Length: 304 Pages (Hardback)
Release: September 2016
My Rating: 5/5 Stars

This series is extremely fun. It's been a while since I read the first four books in the series, so some of the events leading up to this final installment were a bit fuzzy, but I absolutely loved this. I also really like the new illustrations in these editions.

The Dark Talent has some dark elements that I don't remember being present in the first four novels. Alcatraz has to face some tough consequences for events that happened previously, but his family is there with him along the way.

There is a lot of self exploration for Alcatraz in this installment as he grapples with past events and the fact that he doesn't really know where he fits. He was raised in the Hushlands but found a family in the Free Kingdoms and that's enough to mess with anyone's head. Add to that the fact that he has to infiltrate the Highbrary and prevent his father from gifting everyone with a talent, and you've got an interesting mix.

All of the characters were just as entertaining as ever and I love that Sanderson makes fun of himself through these books. There were some nice references to fantasy novels that were just Sanderson poking fun at himself.

The conclusion to this was a bit grim. There was death and destruction and questions left unanswered. While some might be disappointed by that I found it rather refreshing. Even middle grade novels need a dose of realism at times. And we don't always know the answers. There aren't always great resolutions to every problem. Sometimes you have to face the fact that not everything in life is going to end well. And then there was that note at the very end that opened some interesting possibilities.

Fans of Brandon Sanderson often seem to overlook this series, which is a shame because it really is just as great as his fantasy novels in its own right. It's a fun series for middle graders and adults alike. I would highly recommend the entire series. I laugh out loud every time I read them.  

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