Monday, April 4, 2016

Mistborn Secret History Book Review

by The Wanderer

Author: Brandon Sanderson
Publisher: Tor Books
Genre: Epic Fantasy
Series: Mistborn Novella
Pages: 120

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A New People, Familiar Leader

(Contains spoilers for The Original Mistborn Trilogy and Wax and Wayne Books 1- 3) This Should Not Be Read Until You Read All Of Those Books

The Mistborn world is getting big. But never has a larger picture been clearly hinted at or expressed at until the release of this short novella. Nearly ten years in the making - and believe me that amount of time shows - Brandon Sanderson makes the most significant developments to this world since the conclusion of The Hero of Ages.

This is a must read for any Mistborn or Cosmere fan.

While fighting the Lord Ruler, Kelsier and a large number of on-lookers are killed. Shortly after they're greeted by the God, Preservation, who's appearance is cracking at the seams. As Preservation collects the souls to take them to the afterlife, Keslier manages to find away to stay on the planet Scadrial, never departing.

Kelsier's nickname has always been the Survivor, named so because he was the only person to survive the Pits of Hathsin. Obviously the nickname alludes to more. In Mistborn Secret History readers follow up on what Kelsier has been doing since being killed by the Lord Ruler, and how even after dying he still had an impact on the events that occurred in that trilogy. 

This is one of the best stories I've read by Sanderson in a long time. I've wondered as a reader if I've grown more cynical of Sanderson's Wax and Wayne trilogy due to the length of time that's been spent in the world. Or better put, if Wax and Wayne were written first, would I favor that trilogy more? This novella affirms for me that Sanderson's original Mistborn Trilogy will always be the king. Wax and Wayne has been fun, but I don't think I've cared for a Sanderson cast of characters as much as I've cared for Keslier, Vin, and company. (Still waiting to see how Stormlight plays out).

The post-life aura that Keslier assumes reminds me of the way Elantris was written. There are new limits for Kelsier to test, and more characters from Cosmere at large for him to irritate. An appearance by Hoid, several encounters with Preservation and Ruin, and even a few meetings with characters from the original trilogy are highlights.
There was a fair amount of ambiguity at the end of The Bands of Mourning. As this novella begins to wrap up, it should answer some of those questions. Even more importantly it greatly increased my expectations for the final Wax and Wayne volume. Sanderson really has an opportunity to write something special there.

Score: 9.0

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