Firstly I would like to thank The Orion Publishing Group for allowing me to read an advanced copy.
The final book in the Reckoners, the standalone series by Brandon Sanderson (separate from his cosmere.) If you have not read Steelheart and Firefight, I suggest you read my Steelheart review first.
2016 is turning out to be a great year for the completion of trilogies; The Silver Tide by Jen Williams, The Girl on the Liars Throne by Den Patrick, Edward Cox, Judged by liz De Jager, The Last mortal Bond by Brian Staveley (Oh Yes!!)
Unfortunately some things have not improved form the first two books…
David Charleston’s terrible metaphors.
“Like a piece of bread at a rock party….. you know, because nobody wants bread at a rock party. They’ve come to see the cool rocks. So they toss the bread on the floor and it gets stomped on.” (B.Sanderson, location 421,Calamity, 2016)
However Sanderson’s contemporary writing continues to be a step ahead of every fantasy author. Already he has written classics such as the final empire and taking over the wheel of time from Robert Jordan, he is currently ruling the present in the genre, contributing novellas, novels and tomes. Modernising Mistborn. And of course the epic Stormlight Archive which is only at teething stage, two books of a planned ten amounting to two-thousand and ninety-six pages of quantity full of quality not a replacement, full to the brim of imagination, complexity and puzzling intrigue. Magic systems combined with science that is totally believable and beautiful. If the grand scale of his ‘cosmere’ is achieved he will be crowned as the genres best ever writer. The future is bright whilst there are authors such as Brandon for inspiration, the fantasy genre will continue to refresh, adapt and evolve rather than mature, buried in dust.
And now for something completely different… Calamity.
Brandon Sanderson’s very own franchise of Superheroes, books for Young Adults and Old Big Kids like me. They are the Epics, and they do not wish to serve they wish to rule, using their powers to destroy and conquer and dictate the people, to become minions for its Epic totalitarianism.
“What good was it to be an all-powerful force of destruction and fury if you didn’t have peasants to murder every now and then?” (B.Sanderson, location 1008, Calamity, 2016)
Narrator David Charleston, once a young boy witnessing ‘high epic’ Steelheart murdering his father in front of his eyes becomes obsessed with knowledge about the Epics in search of vengeance for his father’s death. After tracking down the infamous Reckoners- Epic hunters, David’s hard research pays off and gets him a place on the team.
After the events of Firefight, David is nominated to lead the Reckoners by his piers after Prof has turned to the dark(side), he of course now has Megan to protect, which makes him a little more thoughtful and a little less rash. Turncoat Prof has caused mistrust with allies, meaning the Reckoners need to break in to the Knighthawk foundry to get supplies, however it may just be an excuse for Brandon to execute some of his fast and furious action scenes which really get the story to a flier, flowing at a frantic pace.
Despite Profs betrayal, David is determined to find his good side believing he has the formula to remove the dark from an Epic. However Limelight clearly has his own agenda, taking Atlanta and creating a city of salt, where even powerful Epics serve or die. The city of salt is where Sanderson comes in to his own World-building he has incredible vision, which does not take up large sections of the book, but is dreamy nonetheless.
“When I heard about a city made of salt, I’d imagined a place of translucent crystal. Boy, had I been wrong. The buildings were mostly opaque, translucent only at the corners where the sun shone through. They resembled stone, not giant growths of the ground-up stuff for eating. The skyscrapers represented a marvellous variety of colours. Pinks and greys dominated, and my scope’s magnification let me pick out veins of white, black, and even green running through the wall. Honestly, it was beautiful.” (B.Sanderson, location 983, Calamity, 2016)
Limelight does not want to share; he wants to be the Ultimate Epic… but there is only one Epic god, which burns bright in the sky.
In the words of David “Our guns might as well have been wet noodles.” (B.Sanderson, location 1569, Calamity, 2016)
I’ll be honest here Calamity blew me away, it was fast and frantic, witty and beautiful with some real nail-biting moments, this is book three anything could happen. I devoured this book and would happily read the trilogy again. Every Young Adult who loves Fantasy, Marvel, DC and Doctor Who should have this trilogy on their shelves it’s a perfect introduction to Sci-fi/Fantasy literature. And for the adults it’s a riot of carnage and awesomeness.
The trilogy feels complete to me so I would not wish for more Reckoners books, but I do think it would make a fantastic spectacle as a spin-off comic series.
Totally unrelated to fantasy but I have recently self-published a little children’s story for Kindle. A short story about the adventure of a neglected rabbit looking for a home. (It’s actually my rabbit & a true story.) It is a heartwarming story, suitable for young children, particularly great morals and encouragement to those with pets. It’s called Lily the Rabbit, i’m sure you have already seen her on some of my posts and twitter feed. You can buy from this link.