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Cartoon Man
Jan 31, 2004

Nyah hah hah hah hah!



Contra Calculus posted:

All right, after months of trying to read some other stuff like Pratchett and more WoT, I got back onto reading other Sanderson books and started Way of Kings today.

Can, I just say this poo poo loving owns? I read it non-stop for a good four hours today and I can already tell whatever flaws I felt were prevalent in Mistborn, he really cleaned up with this book. True, characterization and dialogue is still not very strong, but it still feels like a great improvement over Mistborn's. (Not that Mistborn is totally bad with characterization. Dialogue is another issue.)

Either that, or I'm just really excited to finally read about a new fantasy world and I'm blinded to its flaws in dialogue and characterization. I like Kaladin as a character so far, though.

Have you figured out yet that all the books/worlds are tied together in a way that does not suck?

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Contra Calculus
Nov 6, 2009



Gravy Boat 2k

Cartoon Man posted:

Have you figured out yet that all the books/worlds are tied together in a way that does not suck?

Not quite yet. This and the Mistborn series are the only books of Sanderson's I've read. They do both have interesting magic systems and are set in worlds that have horrible poo poo happen a lot. That's about all I can see though. If I keep reading, I'll probably find it.

mystes
May 31, 2006



Cartoon Man posted:

Have you figured out yet that all the books/worlds are tied together in a way that does not suck?
Actually, it does suck. The very idea of them being a a shared universe (or whatever it is) makes Sanderson seem 10 times goonier.

Cartoon Man
Jan 31, 2004

Nyah hah hah hah hah!



Contra Calculus posted:

Not quite yet. This and the Mistborn series are the only books of Sanderson's I've read. They do both have interesting magic systems and are set in worlds that have horrible poo poo happen a lot. That's about all I can see though. If I keep reading, I'll probably find it.

Here's a basic spoilered synopsis, you can learn a lot more at the 17th shard if you want. http://coppermind.17thshard.com/wiki/Main_Page

Essentially all the books share the same cosmere. Their different magic systems all came from a single God called Adolnasium. Adolnasium split into 16 different shards each of which represent a magic system. Mistborn had Allomancy, Feruchemy, and Hemalurgy, or 3 of the Shards of Adolnasium. Elantris has AonDor and whatever the evil Derethi monks used to etch symbols into their bones, not sure if it has a name yet. Warbreaker has Awakening. Finally, Way of Kings (Roshar) has Surgebinding, and Voidbinding, though we don't know too too much about these yet. There is a charecter named Hoid who shows up in each of his books in some fashion who seems to be able to travel through the worlds by using the Shadesmar we saw in Way of Kings.

There is a hell of lot more that I could get into, but its best to read the books yourself and then sift through the coopermind on the 17th Shard to learn more.


Edit: Here are all the known magic systems, there are spoilers here.
http://coppermind.17thshard.com/wiki/Category:Magic_Systems

Double edit: Here all the known shards.
http://coppermind.17thshard.com/wiki/Shard
The Shards of Adonalsium, or Shards for short, are pieces of the power of creation itself.[1] They are named after a specific action or ideal, called an intent. A mind must control a Shard. When a person holds a Shard, they are imbued with its power, but they also become the Shard.[2] Despite this, fans have created the term Shardholder to refer to the person who holds a Shard (not to be confused with Shardbearer), but this term is not canonical.

There are sixteen Shards[3], and they are the most powerful known entities in the cosmere. They are related to many, if not all, magic systems, and for practical purposes, they are gods.

Nine Shards have thus far been mentioned in the novels, either referenced by their Shard’s name or its holder. Those known by intent are Ruin, Preservation, Honor, Odium, Cultivation, Endowment, Devotion[4], and Dominion[5]. In addition, Bavadin has been confirmed to hold (or have held) a Shard, though his Shards’ intent is currently unknown.





mystes posted:

Actually, it does suck. The very idea of them being a a shared universe (or whatever it is) makes Sanderson seem 10 times goonier.

Goony authors suck and should not be read by anybody. Shut down the thread guys and pack it in.

Cartoon Man fucked around with this message at 16:06 on Jun 10, 2012

computer parts
Nov 18, 2010

PLEASE CLAP

Cartoon Man posted:

Here's a basic spoilered synopsis, you can learn a lot more at the 17th shard if you want. http://coppermind.17thshard.com/wiki/Main_Page

Essentially all the books share the same cosmere. Their different magic systems all came from a single God called Adolnasium. Adolnasium split into 16 different shards each of which represent a magic system. Mistborn had Allomancy, Feruchemy, and Hemalurgy, or 3 of the Shards of Adolnasium. Elantris has AonDor and whatever the evil Derethi monks used to etch symbols into their bones, not sure if it has a name yet. Warbreaker has Awakening. Finally, Way of Kings (Roshar) has Surgebinding, and Voidbinding, though we don't know too too much about these yet. There is a charecter named Hoid who shows up in each of his books in some fashion who seems to be able to travel through the worlds by using the Shadesmar we saw in Way of Kings.

There is a hell of lot more that I could get into, but its best to read the books yourself and then sift through the coopermind on the 17th Shard to learn more.


If that's true then my question is who has the shard of Feruchemy?

Contra Calculus
Nov 6, 2009



Gravy Boat 2k

mystes posted:

Actually, it does suck. The very idea of them being a a shared universe (or whatever it is) makes Sanderson seem 10 times goonier.

I don't think that's entirely true in my own opinion. I enjoy a lot of stuff that has shared universes, but hey, that's just my own piece.

And hell, at least they're all on different planets unlike Marvel and DC comics where you have the X-men who are persecuted for being superheroes and then you got loving Spiderman who is loved for being a superhero and other poo poo like that. I mean at least with Sanderson books, the worlds are all separate and the magic systems are unique enough that I wouldn't have been able to outright guess any of this stuff unless I went online and looked it up.

NinjaDebugger
Apr 22, 2008




computer parts posted:

If that's true then my question is who has the shard of Feruchemy?

My own theory: Magic is formed by each shard and by the tension between shards. That explains feruchemy and also aondor + whatever the bone stuff was + forgery on the Elantris world.

Yay
Aug 4, 2007


computer parts posted:

If that's true then my question is who has the shard of Feruchemy?
Reading the "Relationship with Magic Systems" on the Shard page of Coppermind, it says Allomancy is of Preservation, Hemalurgy is of Ruin, and Feruchemy is the balance between the two Shards. Though that doesn't have a direct citation.

mystes
May 31, 2006



Cartoon Man posted:

Goony authors suck and should not be read by anybody. Shut down the thread guys and pack it in.
Don't get me wrong. I have mostly enjoyed Sanderson's books. I just think they sometimes get too bogged down by extremely detailed explanations of magic systems. One of the problems I had with the Mistborn trilogy was that whereas the first book already spent an extremely long time explaining everything about allomancy that was remotely related to the plot, by the third book it got to the point of insanity explaining every little detail of the world and magic systems.

I think that Sanderson has possibly been getting better about this, but he still seems to have a tendency to want to make "How does the magic system work?" the central mystery of his books, which not only makes his work somewhat repetitive, but also makes the resolutions of his individual novels and series anticlimactic.

I enjoyed The Way of Kings a lot, but I really hope the series doesn't follow the same trend as the Mistborn trilogy, or by the end it will be about as exciting as the rulebook for a roleplaying game.

Contra Calculus
Nov 6, 2009



Gravy Boat 2k

mystes posted:

I enjoyed The Way of Kings a lot, but I really hope the series doesn't follow the same trend as the Mistborn trilogy, or by the end it will be about as exciting as the rulebook for a roleplaying game.

I think I actually mentioned this once how magic in Mistborn felt like it was a giant game guide explanation. At the same time, I really enjoy his magic systems and find them very intriguing even if he does tend to focus too much on them. Way of Kings definitely reads less like the whole game guide poo poo that bogged Mistborn down and since that was written a few years after Mistborn series, I think he's starting to take the hint that yes, he shouldn't make the magic THE focal point. Maybe A focal point, but not THE focal point.

All in all, he's definitely improving in my opinion. Probably all uphill from here, but I like to be optimistic.

Argas
Jan 13, 2008
SRW Fanatic






Well, in the end the magic systems are kind of like technobabble, only because it involves a magic system he created rather than trying to bullshit physics, they can make sense and be less of a bullshit explanation.

But yeah, the focus on the mystery of the inner workings of magic were rather big points in Elantris and Mistborn, and sometimes overshadowed everything else. In WAy of Kings, it's definitely starting out slower and the magic they've used so far has generally been built into equipment so there's less... Manipulation of it.

syphon
Jan 1, 2001


I don't know if he's really gotten 'better' at that or not. In Allow of Law, he spends a lot of time explaining the magic system (which is very similar to Mistborn but altered slightly). I don't know if he views it as a flaw though, since he's said multiple times that he's a magic-system nerd and that's one of his favorite parts of writing.

I have to admit I feel the same way. I remember reading an article or something by Sanderson where he basically said "wide open magic systems with no rules are boring as hell. You basically have an uber-powerful character that can satisfy any plot device with "a wizard did it" and effectively becomes an Deus Ex Macchina." I agree with him because I loved reading all of the clever ways that people used Allomancy (or being Twin Born) in his Mistborn books.

EVGA Longoria
Dec 25, 2005

Let's go exploring!



syphon posted:

I don't know if he's really gotten 'better' at that or not. In Allow of Law, he spends a lot of time explaining the magic system (which is very similar to Mistborn but altered slightly). I don't know if he views it as a flaw though, since he's said multiple times that he's a magic-system nerd and that's one of his favorite parts of writing.

I have to admit I feel the same way. I remember reading an article or something by Sanderson where he basically said "wide open magic systems with no rules are boring as hell. You basically have an uber-powerful character that can satisfy any plot device with "a wizard did it" and effectively becomes an Deus Ex Macchina." I agree with him because I loved reading all of the clever ways that people used Allomancy (or being Twin Born) in his Mistborn books.

I remember reading that Mistborn books will always be very heavy on the details, because the magic system is just the core of them. It's a conscious decision to focus on the way the magic works.

Cartoon Man
Jan 31, 2004

Nyah hah hah hah hah!



Maybe I'm in the minority, but I like how much detail is spent on the magic system. Coming from Wheel of Time, its refreshing to have a system with concrete rules and boundaries as opposed to channeling whatever spell Robert Jordan needs to advance the plot. I also like how he has held back some of the metals over the course of the series in order to keep it fresh for each new book.

Cartoon Man fucked around with this message at 13:12 on Jun 11, 2012

bowmore
Oct 6, 2008





Lipstick Apathy

I've never felt like he has ever gone over the top so no complaints here.

Contra Calculus
Nov 6, 2009



Gravy Boat 2k

I didn't mean to imply he's gone over-the-top. Maybe that's just how it came out. His magic systems are way cool, I'm just not used to reading books with intricate magic systems like his.

subpage
May 27, 2003

Alea iacta est

I'm finding it really hard to finish Alloy of Law. The puns are just so bad, and there are so many of them. Somebody tell me it's worth it.

Above Our Own
Jun 24, 2009

by Shine


subpage posted:

I'm finding it really hard to finish Alloy of Law. The puns are just so bad, and there are so many of them. Somebody tell me it's worth it.
Brandon Sanderson has an awful sense of humor, and what's worse is that he doesn't seem to think so.

veekie
Dec 25, 2007

Dice of Chaos


Something that occurred to me about the Preservation/Ruin setup.

Hemalurgy is fairly straightforward Ruin, as it takes power through killing the donor.
However, it seems to me that Feruchemy and Allomancy could be reversed. Allomancy obtains great power by consuming an external source(burning metal to release power), while Feruchemy is entirely to do with storing/preserving power for later.

Cartoon Man
Jan 31, 2004

Nyah hah hah hah hah!



subpage posted:

I'm finding it really hard to finish Alloy of Law. The puns are just so bad, and there are so many of them. Somebody tell me it's worth it.

I enjoyed the last couple action sequences and the setup at the end was really good too if you like the Mistborn world. As for the humor, well ... :saddowns:

Kreeblah
May 17, 2004

INSERT QUACK TO CONTINUE




Taco Defender

veekie posted:

Something that occurred to me about the Preservation/Ruin setup.

Hemalurgy is fairly straightforward Ruin, as it takes power through killing the donor.
However, it seems to me that Feruchemy and Allomancy could be reversed. Allomancy obtains great power by consuming an external source(burning metal to release power), while Feruchemy is entirely to do with storing/preserving power for later.

I can't remember where I read this, but the reason they were divided like that is because there's some loss involved in a transfer via Hemalurgy, whereas Allomancy is apparently more of a straight conversion.

Contra Calculus
Nov 6, 2009



Gravy Boat 2k

Above Our Own posted:

Brandon Sanderson has an awful sense of humor, and what's worse is that he doesn't seem to think so.

At least you didn't have to grow up in Utah like me where that type of humor is considered to be standard.

People here try way too hard to tell jokes without using foul language or "toilet humor" as it's called. That's not necessarily a bad thing but you better be damned sure you have a sharp tongue if you're going to tell one.

Cartoon Man
Jan 31, 2004

Nyah hah hah hah hah!



Brandon has signed a deal to write a Young Adult trilogy called Steelheart.
http://www.mediabistro.com/galleycat/brandon-sanderson-inks-deal-for-ya-trilogy_b52969

No word on what its about, but I'm sure Brandon will have a blog entry up about it soon. Hopefully no vampires or werewolves...


EDIT: 17th shard gets the dirt.
http://www.17thshard.com/news/brandon-news/steelheart-to-be-released-fall-2013-r92

quote:

The first novel of Sanderson's new series, STEELHEART, follows David - a teenager in the city that was once called Chicago - as he searches for the extraordinarily powerful Epic named Steelheart, who killed his father. Steelheart possesses the strength of ten men and can control the elements. It is said no bullet can harm him, no sword can split his skin, no explosion can burn him. Nobody fights back... nobody but the Reckoners.

A shadowy group of ordinary humans, the Reckoners spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then taking them out. For the death of his father, David wants to be there for the kill. For years, like the Reckoners, David has been studying, and planning, and he has something they need. Not an object, but an experience. He's seen Steelheart bleed.

STEELHEART takes an action-heavy plot, layers in complexity, and delivers twists and a breathtaking conclusion, as David and the Reckoners try to undo the dystopia the Epics have created. According to Sanderson's agent Eddie Schneider, STEELHEART has entered preliminary negotiations for a major Hollywood deal.

Cartoon Man fucked around with this message at 21:54 on Jun 13, 2012

Kekekela
Oct 28, 2004


I'm about 1/3 of the way through Elantris (listening on Audible) and am pretty underwhelmed so far. I could give less of a gently caress about any of the characters and find the incessant usage of "sule" and "kulo" cringeworthy (sorry if these are misspelled, again I'm listening so I can only guess how he actually spells them). Is it worth plowing forward or am I probably not going to like the rest of the book if it hasn't grabbed me by now?

IRQ
Sep 9, 2001

SUCK A DICK, DUMBSHITS!



Contra Calculus posted:

At least you didn't have to grow up in Utah like me where that type of humor is considered to be standard.

People here try way too hard to tell jokes without using foul language or "toilet humor" as it's called. That's not necessarily a bad thing but you better be damned sure you have a sharp tongue if you're going to tell one.

I loving love bad puns and swearing.

bowmore
Oct 6, 2008





Lipstick Apathy

Kekekela posted:

I'm about 1/3 of the way through Elantris (listening on Audible) and am pretty underwhelmed so far. I could give less of a gently caress about any of the characters and find the incessant usage of "sule" and "kulo" cringeworthy (sorry if these are misspelled, again I'm listening so I can only guess how he actually spells them). Is it worth plowing forward or am I probably not going to like the rest of the book if it hasn't grabbed me by now?
I'm right with you there, it's not a good book. I'm slowly crawling my way through it.

IRQ
Sep 9, 2001

SUCK A DICK, DUMBSHITS!



Elantris is rough, no doubt, but I liked it. Once everyone hooked up in fantasy diabetes city it took off for me.

Eric the Mauve
May 8, 2012

Making you happy for a buck since 199X


I got about 40% through Elantris and then had to put it down for a couple weeks because real life is a bitch. Never picked it back up and realized I was feeling blah about it and didn't really care about any of the characters. This was a couple years ago, I bought it after I loved Mistborn and Warbreaker. I should get around to finishing it sometime. I liked the worldbuilding but found myself uninvested in the characters and the plot moved slow.

bowmore
Oct 6, 2008





Lipstick Apathy

IRQ posted:

Elantris is rough, no doubt, but I liked it. Once everyone hooked up in fantasy diabetes city it took off for me.
I've started skimming until I get to that part.

treeboy
Nov 13, 2004

James T. Kirk was a great man, but that was another life.


bowmore posted:

I've started skimming until I get to that part.

Elantris, in my opinion, has a great climax and resolution, but the trip there is a bit dull. I read it after the Mistborn trilogy so I knew I liked Sanderson but had heard that as a first publish it had its issues. I was working at Barnes and Noble at the time and those of us who liked fantasy would fight over which was superior: Mistborn/Elantris (generally whichever someone had read first they preferred)

Slow down and start reading once Raoden and Sarene meet. From there big things start happening quickly and you're on the culmination and downward slope of the avalanche. Brandon's learned a lot and his newer books are better paced and not as harsh with the climax/resolution containing 80% of the books interest.

edit: anecdotal aside, I just got my wife started on Sanderson and she's absolutely devouring his stuff. She's finished Mistborn trilogy, Warbreaker, and Elantris. She loved Elantris and just started reading it again. Gotta get her onto WoK and Alloy

treeboy fucked around with this message at 04:09 on Jun 14, 2012

Streebs
Dec 6, 2003

RIP

I'm a big Sanderson fan, I've read all of his books and enjoyed them all, except Elantris. The first Sanderson book I read was Mistborn book 1, after completing that I went on to Elantris and I couldn't finish it. A year or two later I tried to read it again and again I couldn't finish it. It's just not a very good book in my opinion. Read Mistborn or Way of Kings instead

NinjaDebugger
Apr 22, 2008




treeboy posted:

Elantris, in my opinion, has a great climax and resolution, but the trip there is a bit dull.

I knew about the Sanderson Avalanche in advance, and had fun spotting every little domino along the way.

OneTwentySix
Nov 5, 2007

fun
FUN
FUN




We've talked about this before, but Elantris is both a great book and an incredibly boring one. The last 20% of the book is really good, but the first half is almost entirely really, really boring, though most of Raoden's parts are decent or better, even when nothing is really happening. I stuck with it because it was the only audio book I had left on a big trip, and didn't regret it, especially since by the time I got home I was able to read the remaining book and it was getting into the good part.

Subvisual Haze
Nov 22, 2003

The building was on fire and it wasn't my fault.

Raoden is great as a proto-Kaladin, someone who goes into a depressing hopeless location and heroically turns things around. The rest of Elantris is very blah. Especially that boring family with their "intelligent" children.

OneTwentySix
Nov 5, 2007

fun
FUN
FUN




That family was the worst. I didn't like any of them, they didn't seem at all like normal people, and were more along the lines of being a fairly sheltered Mormon's idea of what a normal family is like.

Skapegoat
Feb 18, 2011


OneTwentySix posted:

That family was the worst. I didn't like any of them, they didn't seem at all like normal people, and were more along the lines of being a fairly sheltered Mormon's idea of what a normal family is like.

I guess you're gonna hate that the kids are gonna be the main characters of the planned Elantris sequel.

OneTwentySix
Nov 5, 2007

fun
FUN
FUN




Oh. :(


Maybe he'll manage them better now that he's a decent author, or the kids are older?

Quarterroys
Jul 1, 2008



I'm glad I finally got around to reading Sanderson. Like a lot of people, I picked up on him via WoT, and after really enjoying his commandeering the series from the late RJ, I picked up Mistborn first.

I read Book 1 earlier this year, and while there were some good moments, I really have no desire to keep going in the Mistborn series. I don't love the man's prose or characterization much, but Allomancy is well developed and realized, and the progression of the Lord Ruler's background story was enjoyable enough. Sanderson is certainly a talented world builder.

I picked up The Way of Kings out of curiosity a month or two back, and while it took me a bit to get into it, I got absolutely hooked about 1/5 of the way through and have been eagerly tearing through on my Kindle. Night and day difference. He's improved loads on all fronts, and i'm very excited for the continuation of the Stormlight Archives.

Kaladin's flashback cycle is pretty great, and the interludes where we follow Szeth and other various players are a nice touch as well. Can't wait for the next book! (gotta finish this one first)

Am I reading correctly that this is going to be a 10 book series? Holy poo poo. Normally that'd fill me with dread, but Sanderson will have this knocked out before GRRM finishes The Winds of Winter.

IRQ
Sep 9, 2001

SUCK A DICK, DUMBSHITS!



Yeah it's 10 books, but Sanderson is such a planner that, unlike Gurm, he knows exactly where he's going and what happens.

As far as Mistborn, I've often said it's better if you approach it as YA. But if you're really not into the characters but do like the magic system and the world building you could pick up Alloy of Law. All of his improvement as a writer thus far is there, and it's the Mistborn setting. You'll kind of spoil some stuff from Mistborn for yourself, but only with regard to the magic system and some references you probably won't get.

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Drunk Tomato
Apr 23, 2010

If God wanted us sober,
He'd knock the glass over.

IRQ posted:

Yeah it's 10 books, but Sanderson is such a planner that, unlike Gurm, he knows exactly where he's going and what happens.

As far as Mistborn, I've often said it's better if you approach it as YA. But if you're really not into the characters but do like the magic system and the world building you could pick up Alloy of Law. All of his improvement as a writer thus far is there, and it's the Mistborn setting. You'll kind of spoil some stuff from Mistborn for yourself, but only with regard to the magic system and some references you probably won't get.

I thought that in Mistborn, BranSan was really good at creating and planning overarching plot and backstory. Some of the "reveals" in Mistborn were really, really cool. He loads you up with clues, but it still kind of blew my mind when I realized how everything fit together. The characters are all cliche but in that way they're all enjoyable to read and not frustrating.

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