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on 19 July 2017
After many years of waiting on my bookcase, I have finally picked up this first book in the Stormlight Archive series, by one of my favourite authors. I’ve only been putting it off while I read through pretty much the entire rest of his output, as this series is one that is ongoing and I didn’t want to feel I would have too long to wait for additional entries.

My paperback copies of The Way of Kings are split into two volumes, and as with previous novels where this has been the case, I’ve chosen only to read the first half, then take a break and read some other things before returning to part two.

I found the story a little harder than expected to get into - it feels a little more formal and grandiose than some of Sanderson’s other work, and I’m not sure if this is a deliberate style choice (likely, as he does like to plan these things) or a side effect of this being his masterpiece and him subconsciously changing the style). The reader is dropped in quite quickly to several different characters and understanding and becoming used to them takes a while.

Once in though, this is another great book. The characters are rich, deep and rewarding. Their backgrounds and personalities varied and fascinating, with hints of more to be revealed, and it doesn’t take long to fall in love with them and want to follow their stories forever.
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on 1 June 2017
‘The Way of Kings’ is an engrossing beginning to what potentially promises to be a fascinating epic series. The storm battered world of Roshar is another fine work of secondary creation from Sanderson. Although this first novel of ‘The Stormlight Archive’ reveals very little of this land formally protected by some type of order known as the Knights Radiant, it is more than enough to draw the reader in.

Primarily the novel comes from the perspectives of three main characters. The story is told through them as we follow the course of their individual lives which, presumably, will coalesce in later books as the overall plot develops.

Each of these characters also has a series of some sort of flashback sequences or the equivalent as we follow them. Kaladin’s are literal flashbacks into his youth that explain how he came to be a soldier and from that a slave. Shallan instead frequently reflects on why she has made this journey to commit a crime even as she is planning how exactly to carry it out. This provides her with backstory as she tries to come to terms psychologically with what she feels she needs to do. Rather than involving his own life Dalinar sees visions of a seemingly bygone era. These appear to be informative for him in nature rather than being prophetic. These all help to varying degrees to provide a background for the mythology/history of the world of Roshar, thus enriching it.

In between following these three characters the novel also has ‘interludes’ that opt to follow several other characters that often appear to have little bearing on the general storyline initially. The most prominent of these is Szeth, who appears in several of these interludes. As a reluctant assassin that must obey his orders he makes for fascinating character. His brief scenes also contain some incredibly well written fight sequences.

Even after reading this first volume there is little disclosed concerning what the story will be about as a whole. There are numerous tantalising suggestions that it might have something to do with the Knights Radiant and their possible return. Certainly, there seems to be a lot more to be disclosed about stormlight, fabriels, spren, Parshendi and Shard Blades.

It isn’t as fast paced in general as the majority of Sanderson’s novels. It certainly doesn’t have so much concentrated action. The novel is none the worse for this, however, the author embarking on a slower, gradual build of his world that only provides the reader with a small insight into what is happening. This works well as it mirrors what the three main characters learn through events; the reader effectively joining them on their journeys of discoveries.

The book is finely structured to allow this to work to optimum effect. It makes the multiple revelations that finally come in the last fifty pages or so that much more worth the wait. And although plenty is eventually revealed to satisfy the reader, these revelations raise as many interesting questions about the world of Roshar as they answer. It results in a highly satisfying read that leaves the reader expectant for the next volume in the series.
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on 9 June 2017

i'll start by saying a few words about the service of amazon. The book was delivered quite swiftly, and on the day that was stated by amazon. As for the quality of the item, it was really good and quite clean: had only a few black/grey stains on the sides of the pages. It was packaged in a cardboard box that, in my opinion, was more than sufficient.

As for the content of The Way of Kings, it is amazing. If you are looking for epic fantasy adventures, this book should be the one that you buy first. The detail that was put into the book and the care, with which it was written, makes The Way of Kings the best fantasy book that I've ever read sharing the title with The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. I spent many evenings choosing to read this book until 3 a.m. rather than going to sleep, because the story draws you in and does not let go until you finish it. A substantial span (and this is only the 1st book of the trilogy) of 1000 pages does add to the charm of this book. And trust me, reading every single page is worth the time. Moreover, I've found that the writing style of Brandon Sanderson is alluring. As I'm not a native speaker of English, the richness of the vocabulary of The Way of Kings fascinates me. It most certainly broadened my knowledge of English in addition to being a great story :) Oh, and lastly, the hardcover version of the book was really neatly designed - it looks really awesome with that imprinted sword on it's cover.

Actually, I could go on and on babbling about other fascinating details of the book.... But those are yours to discover. Fantasy readers, buy it now - you're not going to regret it :D

A.J.K. Wind
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on 2 July 2017
I was introduced to the works of Sanderson after reading book 1 of the Mistborn series.
It was refreshing and enthusiastic, unlike many, dreary, traditional high fantasy books i'd read in the past. I flipping loved it, and it was by far the best book I ever read. So it was without much hesitation that I decided to give his newer series The Stormlight Archive a shot too.

I have to admit, 10-20% of the way in I faltered. I didn't see where the book was going, and really struggled to push myself to read it. You will almost likely feel the same, it becomes a real struggle to push through chapters of word building and character development. But there is a point in the book that turns all this useless information into gold dust. About half way through, I found I had become addicted and couldn't put it down.

By the end, I was beginning to feel like I had lived in the world. If you enjoy rich character development with immersive world building, then this is the book for you.

Read it, love it.
Journey before destination!
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on 4 December 2016
It's a Sanderson novel. Can it be anything lower than a 5 star rating?! This book was phenomenal! Fantasy at its best! Sanderson knows what he's doing and the scope of this series is just so huge, but so rich and engrossing. Slow and beautifully built and set up for the other books in the series.

Cannot recommend it enough!
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on 22 July 2017
Really well thought out fantasy universe with novel world building and magic systems, and solid characterisations that form a compelling story
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on 1 June 2013
I'm glad I read the reviews before buying this one because it seems the 2 parts have been brought out as 2 separate books - naughty! But this is another fantasy world that wouldn't let me go. I resented having to surface to real life, egged on the characters and did my best to work out where it was going. It didn't always, it went somewhere else but it did that believably. If you haven't read any of Sanderson's other books, do buy this one.
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on 11 April 2014
Fascinating series. Am now on book II and looking forward to the next one.

Took me a while to get into the style of this book but, being a Brandon Sanderson fan, I persevered. The switching from one character's perspective was a little strange for me but now I see how it enhances the story.

Highly recommended
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on 17 July 2017
An excellent and profound piece of work by Sanderson. I was frequently blown away by the detail that he put into his world and his characters. Very much enjoyed.
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on 14 August 2016
An amazing start to another great fantasy series. Brandon Sanderson is one of my favorite writers.
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