It’s fantastic seeing everyones’s reactions! Especially since I had to hold out on myself for a few days after getting the book too early. I have so many things to say, not sure if I remember everything. My initial reaction (with lots of ‘awesome’ and screaming) can be found on the Early Release topic, so the following is a reaction to rereading most of the book. Some favorite scenes or scenes things I strongly reacted to, probably not in the right order: - Adolin and Kaladin’s duel together. For the whole first part of the book where Adolin was going around fighting duels and eventually betting all his family’s Shards, I felt like it would culminate in him making a small mistake in one duel and thus losing all of the Shards. I figured it would be an interesting plot point to have the Kholins completely without them. But the way Brandon handled that it was so much better! I was really shocked and then immediately scared for Adolin when the four opponents walked in, and I might have been yelling various things. From there on it seemed pretty clear that Renarin would join in too, and I thought this could only end in one of the brothers dead or severely injured. Thankfully, Kaladin had other ideas and therefore we got that too-awesome-for-words-fight scene. That Kaladin had to go and ruin completely (although I can understand him)… - Renarin joining Bridge Four. That somehow really stuck with me - both Renarin wanting to do this, even insisting on doing this, and Kaladin giving him the chance. - Dalinar believing Kaladin’s story about Amaram, then going on to verify it and finally calling Amaram out on that. Also, getting a new Shardblade in the process. And I have no words but AWESOME on him casually talking the Stormfather into bonding with him. Did I mention Dalinar is awesome? He is. I hope he doesn’t die for a few books yet. - Kaladin and Adolin’s ‘friendship’, if we can call it that already. I really liked that we could see it progress during the book. - It was really refreshing to see Kaladin from other people’s point of view so often - TWoK was much more focused on him so I kinda forgot how other people might see him. - Adolin and Shallan being total cuties. In everything. - Then of course I must also mention Shallan and Kaladin and their fabulous banter. (I’m not sure yet in which direction I want the Adolin/Shallan vs Kaladin/Shallan to go. Kaladin already admitted he thinks that Shallan & Adolin are good together, and maybe he’ll step back because he sees Adolin as a sort of friend now? Then again, I would hate for Kaladin making more ‘sacrifices’. Ever. But let’s not forget it’s also Shallan’s decision, after all, and she seemed pretty inclined to Adolin even at the end of the book. I just pray that the situation doesn’t evolve into the cheap love-triangle-thing Young Adult books are so fond of. I’m assuming Brandon is better than this and we’re all in for a surprise. Renarin can still swoop in and save the day girl.) - Epilogue. Full Stop. Since chapter 7 I kept thinking that Jasnah’s ‘death’ was handled in such an offhanded way - so it was either obviously not final or it was brilliantly final in order to shock us. I’m really glad Brandon is not GRRM and therefore it wasn’t final. - Szeth losing it completely, and also getting Nightblood. I thought he might be in for a redemption arc, as in ‘die-in-a-good-way’, but I guess that’s a tad unrealistic now. - The confirmation that bonded spren can turn into Shardblades. And of course that Pattern was Shallan’s Shardblade all along. - Kaladin’s Third Ideal. I always get teary-eyed at dramatic and/or epic scenes, so it’s no surprise I cried my way through it and then yelled in triumph at the end. - Speaking of tears: I was so worried and sad about the whole Kaladin-might-break-his-oath-and-kill-Syl-and-then-he-did because you could see it coming in that slow, torturous way. I was actually assuming Syl was gone for good and immediately imagined Kaladin struggling with that for the rest of the series, always being the ‘broken one’. And I wondered if a Radiant broke his oath and ‘killed’ his original spren, would it be theoretically possible to form a new Nahel bond with another spren(assuming one would want to)? Anyway, I’m really glad it wasn’t that permanent. - Kaladin riding the winds! And then actually fighting while doing so. Seriously guys, imagine you just learned to ‘fly’ or rather fall into different directions and then you have to do this while fighting an opponent who’s more skilled at this than you? I’d be a goner in a few seconds. Then again, I would’ve never even tried out the whole ‘lashing myself to the sky’ thing because I’m deadly afraid of both heights and falling, so… - Kaladin rescuing Dalinar (from FALLING INTO THE SKY seriously that was so gruesome if you think about it, urgh) and revealing himself as a Radiant. Pure awesome. - Shallan and Hoid! People wondered how their meeting might go, and then it turns out they had already met AND Shallan basically jumped him when she saw him next. Epic! - My reactions above lack a bit of Shallan. Ehm, she's awesome and I loved her talks with Adolin and her being Veil and figuring out Lightweaving and being more competent than I could ever be in a similar situation and I didn't really like her in TWoK but now I do although I didn't enjoy her flashbacks that much simply because I don't like her brothers except maybe Helaran. I’m pretty sure I forgot a lot of stuff, but that's it for now! Funny thing at the end: I first thought Zahel might be a Knight Radiant who broke his oaths, and that the black sword might be the Shardblade of a Voidbringer or something. Then I read up on the interesting cosmere theories on this and promptly went on to read Warbreaker to know what they’re talking about. Well, while doing so the plot and the characters were so distinctively familiar I realised that I must have already read Warbreaker several years ago - but apparently I forgot the title, the author, any of the main character’s names and also the talking sword that wants to destroy evil. Yes, I’m brilliant, did I mention this?
And since someone mentioned ships - I’m disappointed! Where are my fellow Adolin/Kaladin shippers? It goes along well with Shallan/Renarin