Book Review

Oathbringer—Brandon Sanderson

oathbringerCover flap text: In Oathbringer, the third volume of the New York Times bestselling Stormlight Archive, humanity faces a new Desolation with the return of the Voidbringers, a foe whose numbers as are as great as their thirst for vengeance.

Dalinar Kholin’s Alethi armies won a fleeting victory at a terrible cost: the enemy Parshendi summoned the violent Everstorm, which now sweeps the world with destruction, and in its passing awakens the once peaceful and subservient parshmen to the horror of their millennia-long enslavement by humans. While on a desperate flight to warn his family of the threat, Kaladin Stormblessed must come to grips with the fact that the newly kindled anger of the parshmen may be wholly justified.

Nestled in the mountains high above the storms, in the tower city of Urithiru, Shallan Davar investigates the wonders of the ancient stronghold of the Knights Radiant and unearths dark secrets lurking in its depths. And Dalinar realizes that his holy mission to unite his homeland of Alekthar is too narrow in scope. Unless all the nations of Roshar can put aside Dalinar’s blood-soaked past and stand together—and unless Dalinar himself can confront that past—even the restoration of the Knights Radiant will not prevent the end of civilization.

Language warnings (and so many more spoilers than usual) abound below

tl;dr

Everything sucks for everyone. Jasnah Kholin is the VIP of the Kholin family. Fuck Moash. The Knights Radiant get to be badass and I’m so proud of them.

getting down to business [to defeat the Voidbringers]…

After that tl;dr, do I need to put a language warning in this post? Because, just, fuck Moash. If I could repeat that a thousand times, I would. As a matter of fact, I’ll share with you a preview of an exchange I had on Facebook with a friend (you’re immortalized forever on my blog; you’re welcome) about how much I hate Moash.

Me: The next five hundred pages of Oathbringer is just going to be me screaming “fuck Moash” into the void, and I’m fine with it.

I hate Moash. And Amaram. And Taravangian. I’m trying a new format in blogging, and in honor (see what I did there?) of my love for Brandon Sanderson’s work, we’ll break it out here. You get a selection of my live reactions to this book. More spoilers than usual abound, because fuck Moash.

 

December 27—Facebook status
Seriously, just fuck Amaram.

December 28—Facebook status
Things I need to see if Oathbringer ever gets made into a movie: Kaladin doing pushups when Sigzil walks in.
Text message
Me: I fucking love that Dalinar is like “this poor woman must be terrified” and she’s literally organized a bonfire and a defense in the time it took him to get to her
Text message
Me: I mean, Kaladin doing pushups is not a scene I DON’T need to see in a movie
Friend 2: Right? A slow motion scene
Me: With the camera panning up and down

December 29—Facebook status
Me: Update: Fuck Moash. I still feel personally betrayed.
Friend 2: This needed a trigger warning

December 30—Facebook status
Update: Fuck it-isn’t-my-fault Moash.
Facebook status
Me: The next five hundred pages of Oathbringer is just going to be me screaming “fuck Moash” into the void, and I’m fine with it.
Friend 1: Man, you really hate Moash. I have to say I do not have the same level of hate for him. I don’t really hate him at all, actually.
Me: I just… really hate Moash. I don’t even know why. His every “but it wasn’t my fault!” triggers the sound of whining manbabies in my head. If his redemption arc comes, it’s gonna take more than Parshmen to bring me back around.
Friend 1 (half an hour later): You know what? Never mind. Fuck Moash.
Text message
Me (10:04 AM): I love Ivory.
Me (10:58 AM): AND I LOVE JASNAH. If she doesn’t get a chance to kill Amaram, imma punch a bitch.
Me (11:06 AM): Page 535: I hate Moash more than ever.
Me (11:16 AM): I need to know more about the vision where the Radiants broke their bonds with their spren.
Me (11:17 AM): I NEED YOU TO BE AWAKE. ODIUM. I’M LITERALLY NOT EVEN SORRY
Friend 2 (11:40 AM): Odium, man
Facebook chat
Me: I just fucking met Odium and I’m dying
Friend 1: Oh my god, right? I flipped shit when that happened.
Me: I literally texted [Friend 2] in all capital letters.
Friend 1: He was so uncomfortable to read. Like you could feel his ickiness oozing off the page.
Me: RIGHT?? And Dalinar was all “god?” And he was like “yes! But also no.”
Friend 1: Ick ick ick
Me: Seriously though fuck Taravangian. And Moash. Fuck them both.
Friend 1: I am right there with you on that sentiment.

December—Facebook status
It took me nearly 700 pages, but I found Hoid and I am pleased.

January 1—Facebook status
Me: Don’t mind me having proud mama moments over Kaladin Stormblessed.
Friend 1: When?
Me: With the Fused when he was like “NOT TODAY MOTHERFUCKERS”
Friend 1: “The skies were HIS.” Yes I defo got goosebumps.
Me: LITERALLY THAT LINE. My boy all grown up

January 2—Facebook status
(12:07 PM) KALADIN MY BRILLIANT GLOWING CHILD is what I’m going to name my Oathbringer review
Facebook status
(8: 13 PM) Me: Just… just fuck Moash, okay.
Friend 2: I never hated him more than at that moment.
Friend 1: FUCKING RIGHT?!?!?!
Friend 2: It would be slightly amusing if we were all talking about different moments. We aren’t—but he’s shitty enough we could be.

January 5—Text message
Me: Brandon has an obsession with chickens. [Sends two pictures] Pg 1048 [Exhaustionspren circled in the air above, like large chickens] and 1050 [A land with strange beasts like horses, chickens. And humans]
Friend 2: Chicken?
Me: On two almost consecutive pages. Brandon has a weird obsession with chickens.
Friend 2: He does mention them a lot

January 9—Text message
Me: TEFT HAS A SPREN. OMG ROCK
Friend 2: All the things are happening
Me: Omg fuck Teft. IS THAT CULTIVATION? THAT IS CULTIVATION!

January 10—Facebook status
I found the chapter where the talking homicidal sword was the rational one, and, like, guys, listen to the talking homicidal sword.

January 10—Text message
Me: Also Shallan literally just talking to the Oathgate…. Fuck Nin or Nalan or whatever his name is.
Friend 2: AGREED!
Me: I NEEDED THE HERALDS TO BE GOOD
Friend 2: They’re complicated
Me: LISTEN TO THE TALKING HOMICIDAL SWORD. God, fuck Amaram.

January 11—Facebook status
Update v. 17: Still fuck Moash. Kaladin is still my brilliant, glowing child. But Jasnah Kholin is who I aim to be one day. You hold that wall, my girl.
Text message
Me: YES SZETH DO IT
Friend 2: ALL OF IT
Me: SWEARING HIS OATH TO DALINAR. ALSO DALINAR NO
Friend 2: So much now happening
Me: ODIUM CHOOSING DALINAR AS HIS CHAMPION?!
Friend 2: Things took s sudden turn
Me: Oh. Oh wait shit. Szeth just swore to Dalinar. I’m stressed out
Friend 2: He surprised me
Me: EVERYTHING IS GOING SO BAD
Friend 2: Into the shitter
Me: I’M SO PROUD OF DALINAR AND RENARIN AND EVEN JASNAH, EVEN THOUGH THREATS COME FROM WITHIN
Friend 2: EVERYONE IS WINNING EVERYTHING
Me: In the space of a paragraph. Except Kaladin. He’s still not winning
Friend 2: He’s the slow kid in the class.
Text message
Me: Jasnah is literally the most powerful character in this book not bound to a large sliver of a god
Friend 2: Truth. The elsecallers have some damn fire power
Me: THE SWORD TOLD [Adolin] HER NAME
Text message
Me: Fuuuuuuck Moaaaasshhhhh
Friend 2: Right. Little bastard is everywhere
Me: Can’t bear the betrayal in Kaladin’s eyes. Honestly, Moash, DON’T KILL THE KING AND KALADIN WON’T BE UPSET WITH YOU
Friend 2: Fuck Moash. I can’t let him be a redeemed human in my eyes

I’m not sure what else there is to say about Oathbringer after all that, honestly. Shallan was a tough sell for me in the first several hundred (maybe first thousand) pages, but once we hit Shadesmar, this girl stepped up and owned her shit (brb, going back to add a language warning to the beginning of this post), and she grew on me. Her competency went, well, to an upper level of the building. Jasnah‘s competency level is through the roof.

Ugh, Jasnah is my queen in all the ways.

The one thing I don’t buy (and I have to admit, this is a Big Thing) is that the Knights discovering they were the Voidbringers led to them breaking their Oaths. Strangely, the only order I can see doing this is the Skybreakers, except, of course, they’re the only one that didn’t.

I trust and worship at the altar of Bsands, though, so I’m here to see how this all develops in the future.

The king is dead, long live the queen.

Oathbringer HUD

  • Title: Oathbringer (The Stormlight Archive #3)
  • Author: Brandon Sanderson
  • Pub Date: November 14, 2017
  • Publisher: Tor Books
  • ISBN: 978-0-7653-2637-9
  • Hardcover
  • First Reading
  • Date Started: December 13, 2017
  • Date Finished: January 11, 2018
  • Rating: 4/5
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