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The Way of Kings Part One: The Stormlight Archive Book One: 1 Paperback – 26 May 2011

4.7 out of 5 stars 384 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 608 pages
  • Publisher: Gollancz (26 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0575097361
  • ISBN-13: 978-0575097360
  • Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 12.7 x 4.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (384 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,548 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

The Way of Kings Part 1 manages to grip you from the very first page and doesn't let go, it's a powerful and somewhat mesmerising start to a very promising series and one which I intend to follow very closely indeed. (SFBOOK.COM)

Book Description

The brand new epic fantasy series from international bestseller Brandon Sanderson. Released in two volumes due to size of book.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I've spent the last three days awake at ungodly hours of the morning. I've cooked, showered and read. And that's about it. At least until now...

Now I'm a few slim pages from the end of this tome that comes good on every aspect of the word 'epic'.

So why have I still got a few pages left? Because I truly don't want it to end. The worst part of this book is knowing that part 2, 3 etc are not yet out. And so I eke out the few remaining pages, desperately drawing every last word out in the hope it'll take that little bit longer to finish.

If you're a fan of other worlds, of new frontiers and original storytelling then I wholeheartedly recommend this book. It is in all honesty one of the most gripping, convoluted and absorbing tales I have read in years, and coming from someone who tends to read 4-6 books a month, you may realise how high praise that is.
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By EA Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 15 Oct. 2010
Format: Hardcover
Brandon Sanderson is a fantasy author in a million -- he crafts complex, intricate fantasy worlds, and gilds them with exquisitely evocative prose. But his greatest challenge thus far has to be "The Way of Kings," an older manuscript that he apparently dusted off, rewrote, and is now expanding into a vast fantasy epic. This is only the first book, and it's over a thousand pages long.

It's pretty difficult to sum up the plot, since the cast is huge and aren't even in the same place. But long ago, the Radiants (sort of divine knights) once were sent by the Heralds to destroy the demonic Voidbringers. Then they turned against humanity, and begin warring over their godslaying Shardblades.

One part of the story follows Shallan, a desperate young noblewoman who is trying to save her family from ruin. So she seeks out the heretic princess Jasnah in hopes of becoming her attendant... but of course, she has her own secret motives to restore the family fortunes. Another follows Kaladin, a man enslaved in another land and with a shash glyph branded on his forehead.

And then there's Szeth, the "assassin in white" who killed Jasnah's father with a Shardblade, and Dalinar Kholin, the king's Highprince brother whose visions compel him to unite his people before the unthinkable happens. The oathpact has been shattered, and disaster is coming.

"The Way of Kings" is the sort of book that Robert Jordan should have written. The story is filled countless alien animals (they ride GIANT CRABS), mythologies, languages, magical systems and cultures, all with their own distinct quirks and characteristics. But Sanderson doesn't allow his story to be bogged down by the details -- instead he embroiders his elaborate plot with them.
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Format: Paperback
I have read quite a lot by Brandon Sanderson including the Mistborn Trilogy and his contributions to the Wheel of Time series and have been thoroughly impressed. I had high hopes for this book and was not disappointed. I believe it to be one of the best books I've ever read.

Yes it is very long and probably quite a bother to carry around (not really a problem with the Kindle version that I read) but the pacing is perfect and the story never drags.

Character count is kept low so the story is not cluttered with characters that you have to flick back through the pages to remember. Characters are well developed and likeable.

The magic system has enough depth to be interesting while not being too complicated to follow.

In summary this is an exceptional introduction to a series that I can't wait to continue.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The worst thing about jumping into in a new epic fantasy series is having to deal with the knowledge that you are going to be in for quite a long wait for the final act. Considering that The Stormlight Archive is a planned 10 book series I'll have a dusting of frost in my beard by the time I see it and so it was that I turned the final page of The Way of Kings with a despairing sigh.

Sanderson is a quite capable author as evidenced by his work on Jordan's The Wheel of Time (haven't read his Mistborn series as of yet) but Book 1 of The Stormlight Archive does little to advance the frontiers of the genre. This isn't necessarily a bad thing but The Way of Kings is very much about character focus. At times too much so and because of this the tome suffers from some pacing issues and could have benefited from a fair amount of editing. Especially in regards to Shallan who has in my opinion an unjustifiable number of chapters dedicated to her efforts at slathering jam on bread, pulling books off shelves, hypothesizing and taking an inordinate amount of text and obtuse dialogue to reach foregone conclusions. I could also rag on how Dalinar is a little too predictable to stomach at times but I'd get boring. However, and after that little display of vehemence, I would be remiss if I didn't point out that The Way of Kings has some truly solid and promising characters such as Szeth, Kaladin, Syl and Jasnah who I hope to see a great deal more of in future volumes.

Setting the characters aside for a moment, The Way of Kings doesn't feel like it's ever building toward anything. Yes, various disasters looming on the horizon are spoken of but they are glossed over at best never truly being made a pervasive reality as if simply set aside for future reference.
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