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Rhythm of War Full Book Reactions

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Just noticed: this thread now has sixteen pages exactly. Probably won’t stay that way, but it’s fun while it lasts!

And then, ironically, this post made it seventeen. Which fits this forum well!

Edited by Kingsdaughter613
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Finished the book yesterday. I have some really mixed feelings.

I really enjoyed reading it. It had a lot of good scenes, and I loved all the discussions about the magic systems, Cosmere stuff, and such. There was really good character development. There wasn't really a lot of parts that I found boring, it was a really good read. The plot twist at the end was pretty nice.

But. As a part of the greater story, I felt like almost nothing happened - certainly not for such a long book. Things only really progressed close to the very end, with the contract signed between Dalinar and Odium. Up to that point, I felt like nothing was progressing. There was only a lot of info given out and character development, no plot development at all. Which doesn't feel like the other books, or Sanderson in general. So in that way, I am very disappointed.

Still, I can rate it badly, because I enjoyed it as a book. Just not so much as a part of Stormlight Archive. it felt more like one of the novellas, or like a 1200 page prologue to book 5.

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I for one loved this book. Finally finished it at 4AM this morning (which is the time I tend to finish cosmere books, after deciding a full night of sleep isn't worth it).

The plot twists unfortunately didn't really do it for me because two of them (Kelsier as Thaidakar, Shallan's persona killing Ialai) were figured out by the community, and Taravangian becoming Odium was spoiled for me in the coppermind article on the Shards/vessels. 

I loved how this book delved so far into the science of Investiture. Sanderson has clearly planned this out to literally microscopic levels so Navani and Raboniel's interactions were possibly my favorite part of the whole novel.

Adolin's stand against 30 is my new favorite scene of the entire cosmere. This book's Sanderlanche is also my new favorite.

I'll be curious to see how the next book is paced. It's only 10 days until Dalinar fights what I would assume to be El. I can't imagine the whole book will take place over just 10 days so I'm guessing that showdown will come at the end of part 2. My personal prediction is that El will use the anti-Stormlight dagger to kill the Stormfather, but Dalinar will get a hold of Ishnar's Honorblade so he can use his powers to create a new storm by opening a massive perpendicularly.

Edited by ScarecrowBoat716
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49 minutes ago, ScarecrowBoat716 said:

I for one loved this book. Finally finished it at 4AM this morning (which is the time I tend to finish cosmere books, after deciding a full night of sleep isn't worth it).

The plot twists unfortunately didn't really do it for me because two of them (Kelsier as Thaidakar, Shallan's persona killing Ialai) were figured out by the community, and Taravangian becoming Odium was spoiled for me in the coppermind article on the Shards/vessels. 

I loved how this book delved so far into the science of Investiture. Sanderson has clearly planned this out to literally microscopic levels so Navani and Raboniel's interactions were possibly my favorite part of the whole novel.

Adolin's stand against 30 is my new favorite scene of the entire cosmere. This book's Sanderlanche is also my new favorite.

I'll be curious to see how the next book is paced. It's only 10 days until Dalinar fights what I would assume to be El. I can't imagine the whole book will take place over just 10 days so I'm guessing that showdown will come at the end of part 2. My personal prediction is that El will use the anti-Stormlight dagger to kill the Stormfather, but Dalinar will get a hold of Ishnar's Honorblade so he can use his powers to create a new storm by opening a massive perpendicularly.

Interesting. I had first thought Thaidakar could be Kelsier back in WoR, but I was still shocked when Brandon actually did it. I did cotton on earlier than the official reveal though (when Mraize reveals that Thaidakar is a CS.) It was still awesome.

Edited by Kingsdaughter613
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On 11/22/2020 at 2:14 PM, Solant said:

Something about Hoid and Jasnah feels disingenuous coming from him.

This was my biggest complaint in the book. Not the relationship as a whole - just Hoid's part of it. He didn't feel like himself when he was around Jasnah. I'm re-reading the series (after a new installment in a big series, I have a hard time moving to a different author or story) right now and the emotion and banter from when Hoid welcomes Jasnah back from Shadesmar feels much more genuine. 

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It is complete stupidity that Taranvengion didn't tell Dalinar about nightblood. How can Szeth find his way into Dalinar and Odium's vision? The only way it is not stupidity when Odium will know that Dalinar is carrying the sword in one the visions but Rayse took the risk of coming close to Taravingeion when he was close to the sword that means the best thing was to tell Dalinar and intelligent Tara didn't figure that out or he was stupid the whole time.

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8 hours ago, smokeesid said:

It is complete stupidity that Taranvengion didn't tell Dalinar about nightblood. How can Szeth find his way into Dalinar and Odium's vision? The only way it is not stupidity when Odium will know that Dalinar is carrying the sword in one the visions but Rayse took the risk of coming close to Taravingeion when he was close to the sword that means the best thing was to tell Dalinar and intelligent Tara didn't figure that out or he was stupid the whole time.

Smart Mr T was working for Mr T, and so did not tell Dalinar.  Dumb Mr T was following the plan laid out by smart Mr T.  The plan worked because Odium could not see Renarin, which left a gaping hole in his knowledge of what was happening/going to happen (and is a large part of the reason why it was important for Renarin to deliver the spren to Odium; Odium would be able find them, but not how or why they got there, and so would draw the exact wrong conclusions). 

Mr T's motivations are not, and have never been, perfectly aligned with Dalinar's.  There is some overlap, but not that much.  Mr T is presented as the ultimate "Ends justify the means", while Dalinar is a very strong "Means are the only thing that matters".  We do see that Mr T may not be entirely truthful with himself about even that, though, as moments after assuming the power of Odium, his goal of saving humanity from extinction has shifted to beating Dalinar (possibly in a very 'why not both?' sort of move).  Which further shows that they are, more than ever, working at cross-purposes.

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Just finished.  Like someone else said, how Taravangian treats Hoid left a very bad taste in my mouth.  It was like a gut punch at the end of a beautiful play.  I was often moved to tears throughout the book, but that last scence was...just...depressing.

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This certainly ties with Words of Radiance at the least for me! Which is to say, I really liked it! 

Could even be the best Stormlight book thus far, but I'm not sure about that! 

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Got a real Guardians o/t Galaxy moment with Thaidakar’s reveal.  :D
“My boss, Thaidakar?  But maybe you know him by his other name... Scar Lord!”

YES!  Yes, we do!!  :P
 

also, for all the Lirin haters, this book just reinforces to me he has his own version of PTSD, even from before Tien’s death.

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I was rereading the Mistborn annotations and came across this:

“This grueling process is going to have a powerful influence on their characters, and make from them the people they need to become in order to deal with the events of the final book. In a way, that makes this the most important–and most interesting–book of the trilogy. It’s the one which is about character over plot.”

I think this is applies very well to RoW too. I knew it was giving me WoA vibes for a reason! But I liked this book better than WoA on first read.

Edited by Kingsdaughter613
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On 12/14/2020 at 10:34 AM, smokeesid said:

How can Szeth find his way into Dalinar and Odium's vision?

 

Szeth didn't, Nightblood did. The implication is that Nightblood is so powerful it appears in the spiritual realm. Presumably much like you can touch souls in the cognitive realm without affecting them in the physical realm, you can do the same in the spiritual realm. Szeth doesn't know it's happening.

Edited by ScarecrowBoat716
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Finally completed this novel. I have got to say that if this novel was only of 500 pages it might have been enjoyable. All the talks of cosmere science in Navani's POV could have been reduced by a great length. Stress on Kaladin's mental state was repetitive.  

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I loved this book overall, as I have all Stormlight books. Even though it is either the weakest or second weakest for me, it's still a 5/5. Stormlight has to be my favorite ongoing fantasy series.

One thing I wish Sanderson had more of in this book was meaningful character interactions between major characters.

The Adolin/Kaladin/Shallan scene was great because it was a very touching scene giving us a moment of genuine warmth, and a look at how the relationship between three of our main characters had developed (though I wish we got a bit of a deeper look into how Kaladin and Shallan regarded each other now). That moment stood out to me because I kept searching for many such afterwards but was a little disappointed in not finding them, despite there being opportunities.

For instance, I was 100% expecting Kaladin and Lift to develop some sort of connection and inevitably find each other as the only two Radiants awake in the tower, working together in bringing it back. It was quite disappointing to not have something like that, and to have Kaladin alone with his thoughts for half the book. A very interesting dynamic was possible there but sadly never came to be.

There were also possibilities of further interactions between Rlain/Venli, Venli/Kaladin, Szeth/Dalinar, Lift/Bridge4, Renarin/Dalinar, Wit/Renarin, etc, but sadly the book was very hesitant to just have our major characters meet and interact.

Those were some of the most fun scenes from the previous books for me, with Kaladin meeting Dalinar, then Kaladin/Shallan, Shallan seeing Adolin, etc, but they were just missing here. Everything and everyone just felt a little too goal oriented, with interactions happening almost solely to further each character's purpose.

Edited by freypies
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Hi everyone, this is my first time on this forum and my first post ever!!!! I apologize if my English isn't great, it is not my first language. 

 

I love everything eveyone has to say. Such cool theorizing and the community is just so smart!

Anyway, I just wanted to say that I have seen a lot of debate about whether Honor the shard will be reforged in Book 5 and specifically it being associated with either Dalinar or Kaladin.

My personal hot take is that I think Dalinar will reforge the Shard of Honor, as a Bondsmith, while Kalaldin whose intent is lined with Honors will ascend to take up the Shard. 

 

Love you all.

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@Kaladin Is a Hero, Lots of questions for you:

Who's your favorite character and which character do you hate the most (per series, and throughout the cosmere)?

What order of radiant are you/ do you want to be?

If you could choose one allomantic power, what would you choose?

What about one feruchemical power?

if you were a twinborn, what would you want to be?

Of all the powers in the cosmere, which one do you most want to have?

which of brandon's books do you like the most? This includes not cosmere books like reckoners, legion, rithmatist

 

also you should start a topic in the "introduce yourself" forum

Edited by Hoid the Drifter
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Hi! And thank you I definitely will post in the introduction forum. 

 

So, 

1) In the Stormlight Archive, my favorite character has got to be Szeth, even though we haven't had a ton of him throughout the series. I enjoy the mystery surrounding his backstory and also I just want to give him a hug. Szeth is in such need of a hug. I hope Kaladin gives him one in Book 5. Anyway I can't wait for his flashbacks! I think in the whole cosmere my favorite character is Marsh-Kelsier's brother from Mistborn. A bit of a weird pick ,yeah, but I have a lot of respect for the journey he underwent in the first Mistborn trilogy. The dude became a beast! I also immensely enjoy Wit/Hoid/Sephandrius. Of course, I hate the obligatory Moash from the SA and from the general cosmere Elends Father sticks out to me as a major, major d-dag.

2) I want to be Bondsmith but I am Cryptic. 

3)  The power to burn Bronze.

4) Right now Brass-but of course I would have decided this a while ago- so I could have started to store warmth. Because it is winter and it is very cold. 

5) Hmm.. good question. I guess Electrum and Bendalloy might be interesting. 

6) The power of a Bondsmith-you might find that to be my answer quite often.

7) My favorite Cosmere book of Brandon's by far is Way of kings!!! Just, oh my god, the sheer magnitude of epic characters, all in different times and chapters in their stories, just shined on the page so much. And the setup and execution of the events at the Tower was so powerful on all sides that it was truly that sequence of scenes that made me fall in love with Brandon's writing skills.  

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On 13.12.2020 at 1:29 AM, Ernei said:

I've been mulling over this, but the more I think of it, the less I like RoW. And it's pretty strange to me, since I have a history of liking those Sanderson's books that other people consider weaker. I loved OB far more than either WoK or WoR, and I think WoA is the best of Mistborn series so far. All of Mistborn series.

And yet.... I don't know. I flew through the book in five days, but perhaps that's the problem. I constantly felt like the things happening on page weren't really that important or impactful. There was a strong "what's next?" propelling me forward, but said "next" wouldn't really happen until the last part of the book. I loved the Odium bombshell, as I mentioned, and I'm generally looking forward to the five books' conclusion. However, I just feel like many of the things being achieved... Didn't need that much time to be achieved. Some even required a step back before going forward.

Just think of it. At the end of OB we have:

- the Radiants control Urithuru and are now working on getting it back to its glorious days

- there will be a champion contest with Odium

- more and more spren, including honorspren, are forming bonds

- our main cast progressed through a ton of mental health issues in the past three books and seem on track to getting better.

But come RoW, and the Radiants lose Urithuru only to reclaim it at the end, we suddenly learn that nah, the honorspren actually aren't bonding with the Radiants and the few that did are rare, and both Kaladin and Shallan seem to slip back into the same issues that they already had in previous books. With Kaladin, it looked like a new direction for a while, but in the end his storyline was reduced to fighting to survive and protect his friends against overwhelming odds, which is exactly what he's been doing in the entirety of WoK.

You can certainly list important things that happened in this novel and new information Cosmere-wise. But looking at the big picture, where does RoW leave us?

- the Radiants control Urithuru and are now working on getting it back to its glorious days

- there will be a champion contest with Odium

- more and more spren, including honorspren, are forming bonds

- our main cast progressed through a ton of mental health issues in the past four books and seem on track to getting better.

Yeah, certain details changed. The two sides can now kill each other permanently. There are specific terms for the contest. Someone else controls the Shard. But by and large, this 1000-page long book put us in the same situation as the previous tome. Compare to how the first three books of the series each was a complete game-changer. From return of the Radiants to the Everstorm and Urithuru's discovery, to forming the coalition and setting up the contest of champions (it wasn't even established then that the deal was incomplete). In RoW, the only storyline that fits the bill was Navani's, but I don't believe it couldn't have been served in a different way. (I'm also on board the "I wish Rlain had become the second Bondsmith" ship, but that's personal preference).

Wouldn't it have been enough if the Sibling was introduced in 100 pages instead of 1000? Did the way to kill the Fused permanently need all those long, long chapters of build-up? Would anyone complain if Dalinar and Odium set the terms for the contest in like, chapter 1? Even the whole honorspren business was, at the end of the day, an affair we all knew how it was going to end. The revelation of "We. Chose" was very cool, but similarly to Navani, I don't think it needed all those pages spent on traveling, Shallan's repetitive "Is this person the spy?" and "Oh no, a blocked memory of mine is coming back", and so on and so forth.

So... Yeah. I don't really have a conclusion. Just wanted to get the above out of my system.

 

TL;DR Still excited for book five. But a lot saltier about RoW in retrospection. Feels it could've been a lot shorter.

You know what, RoW feels like the ultimate second book of a trilogy because nothing truly happens in terms of the overarching story. Yes, some new revelations are made and some great character developments happened (finally! took them only four books! xD) but in the end nothing big (expect Odium) happens because it needs to happen in book 5. I’m pretty sure book 5 will be AMAZING but because of how Sanderson planned to tell this story, RoW feels more like a +1000 pages long prologue instead of a full-fledged story arc (which isn’t bad, it’s just not what I have expected RoW to be). 
 

And yes! I only signed up so I could quote this post because it sums up all my problems I have with RoW. But I guess I will use this to stay a while and look around. Happy to be here. ^_^

Edited by Khaz
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On 12/13/2020 at 5:59 AM, Ernei said:

I've been mulling over this, but the more I think of it, the less I like RoW. And it's pretty strange to me, since I have a history of liking those Sanderson's books that other people consider weaker. I loved OB far more than either WoK or WoR, and I think WoA is the best of Mistborn series so far. All of Mistborn series.

And yet.... I don't know. I flew through the book in five days, but perhaps that's the problem. I constantly felt like the things happening on page weren't really that important or impactful. There was a strong "what's next?" propelling me forward, but said "next" wouldn't really happen until the last part of the book. I loved the Odium bombshell, as I mentioned, and I'm generally looking forward to the five books' conclusion. However, I just feel like many of the things being achieved... Didn't need that much time to be achieved. Some even required a step back before going forward.

Just think of it. At the end of OB we have:

- the Radiants control Urithuru and are now working on getting it back to its glorious days

- there will be a champion contest with Odium

- more and more spren, including honorspren, are forming bonds

- our main cast progressed through a ton of mental health issues in the past three books and seem on track to getting better.

But come RoW, and the Radiants lose Urithuru only to reclaim it at the end, we suddenly learn that nah, the honorspren actually aren't bonding with the Radiants and the few that did are rare, and both Kaladin and Shallan seem to slip back into the same issues that they already had in previous books. With Kaladin, it looked like a new direction for a while, but in the end his storyline was reduced to fighting to survive and protect his friends against overwhelming odds, which is exactly what he's been doing in the entirety of WoK.

You can certainly list important things that happened in this novel and new information Cosmere-wise. But looking at the big picture, where does RoW leave us?

- the Radiants control Urithuru and are now working on getting it back to its glorious days

- there will be a champion contest with Odium

- more and more spren, including honorspren, are forming bonds

- our main cast progressed through a ton of mental health issues in the past four books and seem on track to getting better.

Yeah, certain details changed. The two sides can now kill each other permanently. There are specific terms for the contest. Someone else controls the Shard. But by and large, this 1000-page long book put us in the same situation as the previous tome. Compare to how the first three books of the series each was a complete game-changer. From return of the Radiants to the Everstorm and Urithuru's discovery, to forming the coalition and setting up the contest of champions (it wasn't even established then that the deal was incomplete). In RoW, the only storyline that fits the bill was Navani's, but I don't believe it couldn't have been served in a different way. (I'm also on board the "I wish Rlain had become the second Bondsmith" ship, but that's personal preference).

Wouldn't it have been enough if the Sibling was introduced in 100 pages instead of 1000? Did the way to kill the Fused permanently need all those long, long chapters of build-up? Would anyone complain if Dalinar and Odium set the terms for the contest in like, chapter 1? Even the whole honorspren business was, at the end of the day, an affair we all knew how it was going to end. The revelation of "We. Chose" was very cool, but similarly to Navani, I don't think it needed all those pages spent on traveling, Shallan's repetitive "Is this person the spy?" and "Oh no, a blocked memory of mine is coming back", and so on and so forth.

So... Yeah. I don't really have a conclusion. Just wanted to get the above out of my system.

 

TL;DR Still excited for book five. But a lot saltier about RoW in retrospection. Feels it could've been a lot shorter.

I agree with this. And I think the reason why RoW felt like a 'prologue to Book 5' is because Brandon outlined Books 4 and 5 together. (Posted when Progress Bar on Sandersons Website was updated:)

I think we can expect major upheavals occurring in Book 5. Even though it is a Szeth Viewpoint book, I think this is going to be Dalinar centric as well, in the same way Venli-Navani existed for RoW.

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On 12/6/2020 at 7:40 AM, Nathrangking said:

This book was a mixed bag for me. On the one hand there were massive highs a certain oath by Navani comes to mind!! The lows were massively impactful hitting where it hurts. Stormfather is Brandon able to push my buttons!! There were meh moments though that hurt the experience. Save for the last flashback with Eshonai the flashbacks fell flat for me. The lasting integrity arc was also was less than impressive. I like Adolin, but the arc did nothing for me. He was so protected by plot armor that it was disappointing. Some of those twists really got me. Vargodium is one scary concept!!

'Adolin protected by plot armor.'

When I saw this, I pictured Adolin losing the trial - getting sentenced to execution and being run through with a sword - Maya recovering and helping Adolin become a Radiant. This could have occurred at the same time Sibling bonded Navani, to circumvent the BAM plot in some manner.

Sounds so cheesy that I think I'll leave Brandon to the writing xD

Edited by HoidIsAdonalsium
Grammar
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If I recall correctly I compared Oathbringer to a good red wine back in 2017 in that it just keeps getting better and better. Now this book is more like I imagine Rock's famous stew. It is heart-warming, firmly establishes a sense of community (with different peoples and characters) but boy its aftermath is taxing on the stomach.

I really wanted to to go slow and easy on RoW and I actually managed to in the beginning. Courtesy of the curious intricacies of international shipping in 2020 I actually had the book in my hands four days prior to release. I then read books one and two in the first week and actually managed to put the book down for a week or so to give me some breathing space. After picking it up again, however, there was no putting it to rest and I finished it in a 3-day-frenzy.

Let's start with the questionable: I had a hard time reading Kaladin in this book as - surprise, surprise - his depression is just so depressing. I also had a hard time reading Dalinar in this book as he is such a rock (no pun intended). He feels so static and at times slow-witted while reading - even though I have since realized that he actually has changed quite a bit during RoW. I also suspect that I am so used to young and unsettled characters in fantasy that Dalinar is an outlier who challenges my accustomed ways by virtue of his, well, actually being a fully-fledged adult.

On the more clearly positive: I loved Kaladin's shift towards a civilian role and I actually had no problem with him reverting to his fighty-fighty ways later (I'm not Lirin, after all). The shift was enormously powerful and it was maybe the first time in a long while (ever?) that I felt there could be a positive future for Kaladin. Kaladin's arc also raised the enormously interesting question of what Radiants could achieve were they to use their powers in a civilian context. This is fascinating stuff to me because it hints at a future for Roshar (and possibly the Cosmere) which is not solely centered around different Shards using different non-Shard proxys (i.e. people) to fight each other. If Kaladin can a find a future without war - and I feel he can, even though he chooses not to during RoW -  anybody can.

I also loved Shallan's arc and found her character very relatable on many levels. She is so much the 18-year old who wrestles with stuff but has simply no grasp on her own personality. I understand that many people - me included - had a different experience during their teenage years, but it feels extremely relatable to me nonetheless. She just struggles and puts on the smiley-face whenever she needs to but in this book her shell is finally pierced and it is utterly heart-wrenching but also heart-warming.

As for Navani: Great stuff with all her science, but I couldn't relate too much to her character-wise, since it was quite obvious that Raboniel played her the whole time. Her not seeing through (or not wanting to) this ploy felt a bit shallow for the lifetime Queen and mastermind of palace machinations, but, at the same time, it didn't bother me too much. On the other hand, I loved the context and social structure the Singers/Listeners but also the Fused have gotten. This really feels like a/several people(s) now. I had a hard time relating to them in Oathbringer but I can do so much better after RoW.

The ending (I'm talking epilogue here) was the gut-punch and I still haven't digested that particular piece of the literary feast that is RoW. Well, three years aren't so long, I guess.

Coda: Amazing stuff again Brandon; I can't and don't want to compare it to other Stormlight-books. It stands on its own weight and I feel that this blew the barn-door to the Cosmere wide, wide open. No closig it now.

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Posted (edited)

Writing here because I care about the direction Brandon is taking. I think he has a "weak point"/penchant for the magic systems that are starting to get really out of control. As a former researcher who worked in quantum physics and gravitation and still very much in tech, I really would say that you cannot begin to compare quantum mechanics with--let's face it--pseudo-science--that this book is full of. Surely, we want to read a book on characters, the world, the mood, the beauty, the majesty, the heroism, the overcoming the hardship themes, which will resonate with many people right now as we speak.

Brandon, addressing you personally, you are an 'old' and wise soul, and you surprised and touched me personally in the WoK, and we love you for it. You have a chance to affect the world around us postively by your words. Now, how does this over-elaborate pseudo-science magic play into this, I am failing to see it. OK, 1/5 of the amount of time spent on it would have been enough, but really, this is way excessive, demanding a lot of attention and energy (and motivation) to delve into, surely reading Scientific American on drug design advancement or neuroscience would be a much better use of time.

Brandon, PLEASE, snap out of it, you are overloading the books with too much detail, pseudo periodic element tables, pseudo-chemistry, pseudo-quantum physics, can you please please please get back on track and write LITERATURE--as you entirely can--not pseudo-science?

Edited by Torero
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Posted (edited)

RoW was in my opinion yet another example of Sanderson carving out a unique space amongst other epic fantasy authors. I feel like he drew "regular" fantasy readers in with epic fantasy style, big wars epic superhero stuff - and now i'm sat reading about a middle aged woman doing science while singing to herself chatting with an evil super-mom. I love this book so frickin much. His world-building, refreshingly varied characters and "logical" approach to magic systems is what has set him apart. I absolutely love that Sanderson is leaning into his personal style and letting it lead the way. 

The depth of the cosmere-ties that are being explored, not only by readers, but now by viewpoint characters in the actual book, really start to make it clear, that his works, although they work as stand-alone, truly are meant to show you a complete universe. I lovelovelove it.

Edited by Mardy
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But Mardy, what you loved and what is haunting you and you remember from the book vivdly is the picture of a semi-immortal mum with her disabled daughter, and of a middle-aged woman doing 'science' under tremendous pressure. You are not actually haunted by the details of that mentioned 'science' itself, you're not likely going to be saying to your friend about this amazing book you'd read and when they ask you about the book you tell them about drums were beaten in order for the lights to be mixed etc etc You referred to that whole lot in your post above by one single word 'science'. You did not recall in two-three paragraphs above the very details of that science because the haunting and inventive picture and mood and setting that Brandon depicted, deposited a more powerful lasting picture in your heart and mind than all those scientific 'details'.

That is what I am saying: Brandon's strengths as a writer lie with that inventive insight into human (and non-human :-)) psyche and wise gentle touch but when Brandon goes into those intricate details of magic, science whetever it may be be called, it's kind of slipping, and ends up not being that memorable. So how about reducing it by 80% and if needed adding more logic to basic questions like asking the immortal mum what actually happened 3000 years ago, which would have been a much better filler for a meaningful conversation, instead of the fabrial or shard science.

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2 hours ago, Torero said:

But Mardy, what you loved and what is haunting you and you remember from the book vivdly is the picture of a semi-immortal mum with her disabled daughter, and of a middle-aged woman doing 'science' under tremendous pressure. You are not actually haunted by the details of that mentioned 'science' itself, you're not likely going to be saying to your friend about this amazing book you'd read and when they ask you about the book you tell them about drums were beaten in order for the lights to be mixed etc etc You referred to that whole lot in your post above by one single word 'science'. You did not recall in two-three paragraphs above the very details of that science because the haunting and inventive picture and mood and setting that Brandon depicted, deposited a more powerful lasting picture in your heart and mind than all those scientific 'details'.

That is what I am saying: Brandon's strengths as a writer lie with that inventive insight into human (and non-human :-)) psyche and wise gentle touch but when Brandon goes into those intricate details of magic, science whetever it may be be called, it's kind of slipping, and ends up not being that memorable. So how about reducing it by 80% and if needed adding more logic to basic questions like asking the immortal mum what actually happened 3000 years ago, which would have been a much better filler for a meaningful conversation, instead of the fabrial or shard science.

I totally see what you're saying! It's like perhaps how some view the in-depth and high detail fighting scenes to be a bit "too much"?

I myself meant to point out though that Brandon's type of writing that is perhaps "too detailed" in some areas, such as logically explaining science elements, is precisely what i love. I can totally buy that my personal preferences aren't the same as the majority of fantasy readers though! I'm a musician with a background in engineering with a mind that struggles to see big pictures but love details - therefore getting such in depth explanation of the science behind the magical elements, only serve (for me personally) to make the worlds Sanderson have created feel more real! 

Those details is what makes my heart believe in the story to an extent that other fantasy authors don't manage to do for me. I love the balance as it is, but i do see your point on how many would probably enjoy less factual details, and more story/personal focus.

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