Mistborn, The Well of Ascension by Brandon Sanderson, first half

There is a world where creativity is only an idea, and slavery is commonplace. A place where people can draw special powers from the metals of the earth and where an evil tyrant rules. Well not anymore. After the Lord Ruler was overthrown, the rebellion scrambles to take up rule. This is where our story begins. Before I start, I have to explain some details in order for this to make sense. Allomancy, is the ability to burn metals and gain special powers from them. Each metal has its own special ability. Metals such as tin enhance your senses while metals such as pewter enhance your physical strength. There were twelve known metals; iron, steel, tin, pewter, brass, zinc, copper, bronze, atium, malatium, gold, and electrum. This is enough information to make my analysis understood. If anyone reading this has questions, ask.

Now you may be wondering why I said there were twelve known metals, and if you didn’t you’re looking back now. The reason for me saying this is not just a tense issue, but the reason that the Mistborn series is so great, its surprises. Some books that I have read are very predictable, but with the Well of Ascension this is not the case. In a way the book is similar to a pick your own adventure book. There are so many different ways the book could turn in just a few short pages.Though it is not you who is making the decisions but Brandon Sanderson. He makes you feel that you are opening a gift every page.

One case of this is the reason that I said there were twelve known metals. Vin, the main character, realizes that there are more than just twelve metals. Sadly the reader does not know this until suddenly she accomplishes her task. This new metal allows for many new abilities that she can achieve. Before this point you had no idea that there might have been anymore metals and had accepted the twelve. This is a total surprise and took me off guard. Most people would think that it was the author’s mistake for not mentioning there was a probability of a new metals beforehand. This is not how I see this. Books are great because of their surprises not because of the absence of them. This is just one of many of these exciting plot twists in the Mistborn series. Due to spoilers I do not want to share anymore than I have.

There is another reason that The Well of Ascension and Brandon Sanderson are perfect. This is the changing of character perspective. With a different character every chapter, you get to know as many as eight people by the first half of the second book. Though this may get confusing, once you get into Sanderson’s style switching between characters is a breeze. This also does not allow for boredom to accumulate over one character. Knowing these many people’s thoughts allows the reader to really step into the world of the Final Empire.

So with surprising events and the changing of characters, there is no way to know what is on the next page. Explore this amazing page turner by Brandon Sanders after you read the first book, Mistborn. I can tell you, you won’t be sorry.

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One response to “Mistborn, The Well of Ascension by Brandon Sanderson, first half

  1. benweber55713

    Well here I am ending this book off the way I should have started it, with the creative aspects. This book is not like any other fantasy book that I have read, with dragon riders or magic incantations but instead metals. I did touch a little on this in my last post, but I really wanted to talk about Sanderson’s writing style at that point. This blog post will help last blog post make more sense. Anyway back to what I am know going to talk about in this blog post, Sanderson’s creativity.

    As I talked about before, Allomancy is the art of burning metals to gain special abilities. “Each metal has its own special ability. Metals such as tin enhance your senses while metals such as pewter enhance your physical strength. There were twelve known metals; iron, steel, tin, pewter, brass, zinc, copper, bronze, atium, malatium, gold, and electrum” (Weber 1).

    Before I continue I just want to point out that I just quoted myself. The feeling is amazing!

    To expand on this further I am going to explain how in depth Sanderson gets in his creative story line. Allomancy is the same as some diseases as they are genetic, usually in the nobility. Everyone has a chance to have these powers, but to gain access to them they must go through a traumatic event. Once they have gained access to these powers they can do incredible things. Metals once ingested can be burned or as the main character describes it like “an oven” in your stomach. Here is a list of all the allomatic metals and what they do:

    Metal’s power
    Iron
    Pulls on nearby metal sources (can’t be inside living things)
    Steel
    Pushes on nearby sources of metal (can’t be inside living things)
    Tin
    Increases all senses
    Pewter
    Increases all physical abilities
    Brass
    Dampens Emotions
    Zinc
    Enflames Emotions
    Copper
    Hides bronze burners from finding others allomatic pulses
    Bronze
    Finds allomatic pulses
    Aluminum
    Destroys someone’s allomatic reserves
    Duralumin
    Enhances next metal burned
    Atium
    See other people’s futures
    Malatium
    See other people’s past
    Gold
    See into your own past
    Electrum
    See into your own future

    This is all to create a interesting world for the reader. Don’t even get me started with what these metals do for feruchemists because that is a whole different story. That would take another blog post that I don’t have time to write, and you don’t have time to read. All of this demonstrates Sanderson’s creative intellect. This makes the story much more interesting because you don’t know what he is going to integrate next.

    One of the items that Sanderson loves to intergrate in the Mistborn series is new mythical creatures. There are three major ones that are worth mentioning, mistwraiths, kandras, and koloss. First is the mistwraith. It is important to note that every night mists, thicker than fog, obscure the land. These creatures wander around the mist following scents of people. Though they do not have the brainpower to kill any animal, they wait for anything to die and then eat it whole. Their forms are never the same because with the bones of their prey they can form any type of body. Without intelligence they eventually form themselves a body with the bones of their prey sticking out everywhere with multiple heads. The kandra is a close relative of the mistwraith just with more brains. Prohibited to kill humans they are of no use as assassins, but for informants they are perfect. If you give them money and a body they can eat the body and look exactly as the person did. This makes them extremely useful for emperors and kings. Lastly there are the koloss, these are very grotesque creatures, When born they are about five feet tall with their skin baggy and does not fit right. As they grow their skin doesn’t grow with them. So as they can grow to thirteen feet tall the skin stretches and stretches until it rips. These creature usually die of heart failure before the skin can full rip off.

    For all the creative aspects that Sanderson fits into The Well of Ascension it can be said that it is a story of its time. These creative aspects keep the reader enthralled into the world of the final empire. These reasons and the reasons that I stated in the blog post above I would rate this book a solid nine out of ten. To meet all of these creatures and magicians you all should read Mistborn Well of Ascension and its prequel Mistborn Hero of the Ages.

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