Monday, February 22, 2016

Book Review: Calamity by Brandon Sanderson

*** This is the final book in a trilogy so if you haven't read Steelheart and Firefight proceed with caution. But seriously, if you haven't read those books you must get on that! They are fantastic and everyone should read them. ***

Title: Calamity
Series: The Reckoners #3
Written by: Brandon Sanderson
Published: February 16, 2016 by Delacorte (Random House)
(Amazon / Goodreads)

Synopsis: When Calamity lit up the sky, the Epics were born. David’s fate has been tied to their villainy ever since that historic night. Steelheart killed his father. Firefight stole his heart. And now Regalia has turned his closest ally into a dangerous enemy. 

David knew Prof’s secret, and kept it even when Prof struggled to control the effects of his Epic powers. But facing Obliteration in Babilar was too much. Once the Reckoners’ leader, Prof has now embraced his Epic destiny. He’s disappeared into those murky shadows of menace Epics are infamous for the world over, and everyone knows there’s no turning back... 

But everyone is wrong. Redemption is possible for Epics—Megan proved it. They’re not lost. Not completely. And David is just about crazy enough to face down the most powerful High Epic of all to get his friend back. Or die trying. 

The last book in the series.


No, I won't subject you to that. I could, mind you, but I won't. But seriously, I absolutely love this series and the final book was such a fantastic ending. It made me laugh, it made me cry (tears of joy and sadness), it took me on an epic (pun intended) adventure befitting of a Sanderson book.

One of my favorite thing about this series is the powers system. It's creative and complicated with endless iterations. I always love magic systems that plays with the tropes and Sanderson absolutely plays with the traditional superhero concepts in this book. In fact these aren't even really heroes at all, they're not even really antiheroes. People with powers are essentially the villains of this world. The people with powers in this book are very easily corrupted by them throughout the book. They have ruined things and take full advantage of their powers to lord it over those who are mere mortals.  I find this such a fantastic concept and I love exploring not only the powers but how it affects the people around them. We definitely get to see Epic powers at play in a big way. Characters who we know with powers get to use them even more and it's amazing to see them in all their glory. But even deeper than that, Sanderson explores what it means to be an Epic here, including more about how they got their powers and their weaknesses. It was so satisfying to learn about it but I do still have question. Most notably... More please?

This gif is so very awkward fanboy David, I had to use it.
But I want more of this series because I love these characters so much. This Reckoners has some truly amazing characters. It's a diverse and quirky cast and some of my all-time favorites. I absolutely adore David and his terrible metaphors, although in this book I think those were at a minimum. But even without them, David's voice is amazing. He has this great balance with humor, intelligence, resourcefulness, and impulsive dedication to his cause. He's really the hero of this book and it's been so fantastic to be along for that journey. But there are also some really fantastic secondary characters. Those from the second book joined some old-favorites from the first and it was great learning more and seeing Megan, Cody, Abraham, and Mizzy in action. And then of course there is Prof. Seeing Prof in action was both amazing and heart-breaking. I have come to know and love every last character in this series, even some that I probably shouldn't (like Obliteration). But they're so fun and real. I love their development and the relationships between them. It's a great crew and I love them so much I'm not ready to let them go.

But once again this book took me on an action-packed adventure full of vivid details and so much excitement and mystery. Brandon Sanderson is known by his fans (including me) for his ability to constantly surprise us. I'm good at solving mysteries and I almost never solve a Sanderson twist. When I read his books, my brain works a mile a minute and I desperately attempt to figure everything out before he rips my heart out again. with this book I had all-kinds of crazy theories going in and I was wrong on all of them. But, when they were proven wrong my theory crafting through the middle of the book did come up with the right solution so I'm calling that a win. But in general this is an incredibly fast-paced read. The stakes are really high and more than once I found myself biting my nails, worried and shocked by the way things were going for our heroes.  It built to an amazing conclusion and I just flew through these 400 pages, reading them in just a few days because I couldn't put it down. In the attempt to expand and explain it did have some moments where resolutions felt sudden or not complete enough but it was a hugely satisfying ending to a great series. And when I was finally done I was left with this strange combination of satisfaction and desire for more.

On the whole, Calamity was a great conclusion to a fantastic dystopian series. It was an action-packed read full of mystery and intrigue with great characters and a fantastic world full of interesting explorations of power and how it corrupts. It's so good. I'm not ready to let it go! *clings for dear life.*

I give Calamity by Brandon Sanderson 10 out of 10 stars
(It's probably closer to 9.75 stars but I'm giving it 10 because rounding and Sanderson)

Buy/Borrow/Bypass: BUY! I cannot recommend this series enough. It got me into Brandon Sanderson and it will always hold a place in my heart for that but it's also just a brilliant series. Fans of The Reckoners series will absolutely love this series and if you like superheroes, anti-heroes, or are looking for a books full of action then check these books out.

Have you read Calamity? What did you think? Leave me a comment with your thoughts. Thanks for stopping by and HAPPY READING!


  1. I'm halfway through Calamity rn and I can't even make sentences whenever I try to talk about this book! HOLY SHIT THIS SERIES IS FREAKING AMAZING. Well his Mistborn is even better but c'mon we can't deny that this has to be one of the most engrossing series out on the shelves! DIdn't read most of the review due to spoilers but definitely read some parts where u were fangirling about the part I'm up to. Great review so far and will come back when I'm finished :D

    Alex @ The Book's Buzz

    1. YES! I love Sanderson so much. This was the book that got me into him but Mistborn hooked me. I'm attempting to finish the Cosmere this year so we shall see. And we have already chatted spoilers so I'm glad you loved the book too!

  2. I keep hearing this series is so great, so don't ask me why I haven't read it yet. Great review, I'm excited to give this series a try.

    1. IT'S GREAT! I'm a huge fan. You should totally check it out and love it!

  3. Oh I LOVED this series so much, why must it be over? WHHHHHHHYYYYYY? *Cried forever* Anyways, I LOVED the powers too, they weren't all typical fire and flying, and their weaknesses could make sense of be strange :D It was a great idea that was so well done, I wish it wasn't over...But the ending I was a bit confused about. Who sent Calamity? Did they say? Or am I just confused xD But I did love how it ended, I had chills!

    1. I feel your pain! I'm sad that it's over as well. Although I heard rumors of a potential spin off series. The ending was a little confusing. I still have a lot of questions as well. It was kind of a left field twist and Sanderson doesn't usually do that. But again, spinoff, which might answer some of those questions.

  4. Personally, I was super disappointed with this book. The ending was extremely rushed. The first 3/4 of the book was all talk and no action, while the last quarter of the book was poorly executed... and extremely messy. I finished the book on a rather unsatisfied note.

  5. It took until the last chapter for me to give it that fifth star, I admit I felt this one was a lot slower than its predecessors, but the reveal at the end was worth the wait. I get why people might not have liked it as much as the others. Steelheart is still the strongest book in this series. Nevertheless, it's worth it to read these to the end.


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