Title: Mistborn: The Hero of Ages (Book #3 of the Mistborn Trilogy)
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Genre: High Fantasy
Tricked into releasing the evil spirit Ruin while attempting to close the Well of Ascension, new emperor Elend Venture and his wife, the assassin Vin, are now hard-pressed to save the world.This adventure brings the Mistborn epic fantasy trilogy to a dramatic and surprising climax as Sanderson’s saga offers complex characters and a compelling plot, asking hard questions about loyalty, faith and responsibility.
What an ending. Over the past two weeks, I have marveled at Sanderson’s impeccable world building, but this finale truly shows how masterful he is. I was, and still am, in absolute awe of his ability to take seemingly innocuous details from the first book and show them to be important plot devices. His foreshadowing is astounding, and I was thrilled when I began unraveling the web of his plot as I flew through the final novel. Every detail in the series proves to be important, and it made this book as thrilling as I could have ever hoped.
As always, I adored the relationship between Elend and Vin in this installment. For someone who grew tired of straight romances five years ago, the love I felt for this couple is impressive. They were wonderful and watching them grow as people through the hardships they have with their relationships was beautiful. I don’t usually care about romance in most books I read, but Mistborn made me embarrassingly hardcore teary-eyed and fangirl-y. I loved that their relationship was based on trust and communication, and when we see so many stories of poorly-written relationships and romantacized abuse nowadays, their love was a breath of fresh air.
There were so many great things — enough that I’m not going to bother you with all of them, because it’s simply not efficient. Instead, I’ll tell you about the few things I didn’t like about this story.
I’ve seen many readers complain about the thematic arc of this series, and after completing it, I can completely understand why. The books go from heist story to war story to economic commentary. While I love George Orwell and books such as 1984, I was not expecting the kind of criticisms of communism, socialism, and capitalism that I found here. While I might have been more open to it had I been warned beforehand, the drastic shift in tone and subplot subject matter left me with whiplash and decidedly disinterested. This is mostly because the commentary was all stuff that I’d seen before, and it didn’t seem to offer anything new. While the situations that arise due to the fall of the Final Empire make sense for the context of the story, the amount of page-time devoted to them doesn’t seem necessary, nor did it interest me.
I also have a problem with the ending. Maybe. I don’t know. Endings are a point of contention for most readers, as no one can agree how a book or series “should” have ended. While the twist that comes along at the end certainly makes sense in the world and I can mostly understand it (I had one minor issue with it, but I won’t discuss it here because of spoilers), it wasn’t what I wanted and it felt like Sanderson had broken a promise to me about where this would be going. So while I was decently satisfied and happy with how things turned out, it wasn’t where I wanted it to be and it didn’t really sit right with me.
Nevertheless, I still loved this series. It was marvelous in ways I had never expected, and the plot, characters, and world-building were admirable at every turn. For anyone looking for a good fantasy read, I would recommend this in a heartbeat, and for those writers looking to polish their world building, this is a must-read.