This year, I’ve been on a Brandon Sanderson kick. I have mentioned already the power of his story telling. In what I have already read of Sanderson, it is apparent that he is such a talented world-creator. In The Way of Kings, Sanderson conceives of a world that is dominated, maybe even obsessed, with storms. Everything from their curse words to their currency is influenced by the storm. In Mistborn, as you might have guessed, the theme revolves around the mist.
But in a different way, it also is preoccupied with metal. The “magic” in this world comes in the form of specially chosen individuals called “allomancers.” These allomancers can “burn” metal (which they consume, such as gold or copper) which give them special abilities. For example, burning pewter (simply, after ingesting it the allomancer can “burn” it) gives the allomancer the ability of super human strength. Individuals who can burn pewter are called “thugs” because they are the so-called “tanks” of any given crew.
While most can only burn one type of metal, certain special individuals can burn all of them. These are called “Mistborn.”
In the Final Empire, the Lord Ruler has been the tyrannical dictator since his mysterious “ascension” thousands of years ago. The people are divided into two social groups: the noblemen, who own vast estates and are generally treated very well, and the Skaa, a peasant group of people who are beaten and treated generally very poorly.
The main characters of the book are Kelsier, a Mistborn Skaa, who finds Vinn, a Skaa who lives on the street and spends her life stealing to live. The book centers around Kelsier’s vision of revenge by killing the Lord Ruler and releasing the grip of the Nobility upon the Skaa.
Overall, this is an imaginative book. It also has a plethora of themes such as racism and social status (e.g., the Skaa are no different than the Nobility but are not treated as such; their skin isn’t even a different color). This is less a political drama and more like an 18th century western where a few outlaws try to exact judgement on the elite.
Like the other books I’ve read by Sanderson, this is a must read. Go get it and read it.