Series: Mistborn #5 (Wax and Wayne #2)
Author: Brandon Sanderson
(Amazon / Goodreads)
Synopsis: Shadows of Self shows Mistborn’s society evolving as technology and magic mix, the economy grows, democracy contends with corruption, and religion becomes a growing cultural force, with four faiths competing for converts.
This bustling, optimistic, but still shaky society now faces its first instance of terrorism, crimes intended to stir up labor strife and religious conflict. Wax and Wayne, assisted by the lovely, brilliant Marasi, must unravel the conspiracy before civil strife stops Scadrial’s progress in its tracks.
Shadows of Self will give fans of The Alloy of Law everything they’ve been hoping for and, this being a Brandon Sanderson book, more, much more.
I'm not sure I can effectively articulate just how brilliant this book was. Last year was my year of Sanderson. I read eight of his books in 2014, including the Mistborn series, and loved them all. I mean I talk about Mistborn all the time it makes practically all me Top Ten lists and they're probably my most photographed books on my Instagram. So it should come as no surprise that the next book in this series was one of my most anticipated books of the year. And once again Brandon Sanderson blew me away with the world, the plot development, the themes, and the characters.
Starting this book was like returning to something so familiar and so different and unique at the same time. That can best be explained by my feelings of the characters of this book. One of the reasons I love the Mistborn series and Sanderson in general is that he is so brilliant at creating complex and likable characters. And quickly into reading I was reminded just how much I love the characters here. I absolutely adore Wax and Wayne. They are the perfect team. They are both intelligent, resourceful, great at solving mysteries, and tough in the face of danger but their personalities could not be more different. Wax a little serious and sullen while Wayne is funny and effervescent. They play off of each other and make the other person better. Marasi is also back and it seems like some of her quirkiness is gone but I still really liked her. She was off-set a lot by a new female character who is really interesting and adds a lot to their team of crime fighters. But what I also loved about Shadows of Self is that there was so many references to characters from the first series. This book definitely felt like it was bridging the gap between the old and the new with what we learned about the connection between the characters we know and love from both series. We learned so much more about all of both casts and how they are connected. The cameos and references to characters in the first series really added a lot to my enjoyment of it.
But the thing about the world that is the most interesting is the combination of religion and political intrigue. The way that the first book ended completely changed the world. It established two new religions, a new government, it shattered the old order. Now after years of relative prosperity and peace that is changing. So in this book there is a lot of discussion about power and control but from so many different angles. It's such a complex story. Sanderson has been the kind of fantasy writer who makes me think about human nature while entertaining me at the same time and he once again proved that with Shadows of Self. But I think my favorite part of that discussion is that it included references to characters from the first series. There were a few subtle ones in The Alloy of Law but here a few characters were a big part of the plot.
Sanderson once again created a book that left me blown away with characters to fall in love with, a complex world with a great magical system and themes about humanity, plus a plot full of mystery and adventure. I am now in desperate need of the next book and falling more and more in love with this series which I never thought possible.
I give Shadows of Self by Brandon Sanderson 10 out of 10
Buy/Borrow/Bypass: BUY! Mistborn fans will not be disappointed. This is an amazing and brilliant continuation of the series that we know and love. I can't wait to see where things go in the next two books but I know one thing for sure, I am once again hopelessly in love with the magic, mystery, and creativity that is a Brandon Sanderson book.
Have you read Shadows of Self? What did you think? Leave me a comment with your thoughts. Thanks for stopping by and HAPPY READING!