This is the last discussion of Mistborn: The Final Empire, by Brandon Sanderson. The group read has been hosted by Carl. Before I get to my answers I would like to thank everyone. This has been an exciting novel and it was fun discussing it with all of you.
Now I have said this in the past and I will say it again, there are spoilers in this discussion. Seriously folks, if you plan on reading this novel do not read the answers below. Here is the page for all of the discussions.
1. So, what do you think of Kelsier’s plan now? Or his ‘plan within a plan’? How do you feel the late introduction of the kandra and how it fit into Kelsier’s plan?
When the Lord Ruler struck Kelsier down I could not set aside the book until I finished it. At first I thought, or hoped, that he wasn’t really dead. But then when his Plan B was revealed I was shocked. I shouldn’t be. I know Sanderson has many tricks up his sleeves, but I didn’t expect Kelsier to sacrifice himself for the good of the revolution. And yet what a brilliant idea. Of course I was still sad, but I also started to think that Kelsier was nobler than I gave him credit for. Part of me still wonders if he was an egomaniac and wanted a grand exit. Even if this was the case, his actions still gave the skaa belief and spurred them to action. I have to wonder if Kelsier will be remembered as a hero. There is still the mystery around the Deepness and will this taint his memory and actions?
As for the kandra once again I was astonished. With this author, you have to pay close attention even to the tiniest details. The clues are there, but it is hard to spot them. Sanderson made it clear that there was something different about Renoux, but it wasn’t until this part did I realize just what it was. And then it was an “A ha” moment.
2. The final section of the book was very Vin-centric. How do you feel about the choices she made and did you have any worries/fears about what might happen to her before everything was resolved?
Oh Vin, on the one hand I applauded her actions, and then on the other I was shouting at her and telling her she was a fool. And her actions were so Kelsier-like that I worried that she would become the next crazy person who I would admire and hate all at once. Then when I read that Sazed was in trouble I was angry with Vin. If Sazed died so soon after Kelsier I may have thrown the book out the window. However, when I realized that Sazed planned on being captured I admired his gumption. This part, even though it was shorter, had so many twists and turns that at points I wasn’t sure what I should feel. But the excitement kept me going.
3. After all that we find out that the Lord Ruler wasn’t the prophesied one after all. Surprised? Had you figured it out? What thoughts do you have about the big reveal, including how it tied into Sazed’s people?
I was surprised and I wasn’t surprised. After reading the quotes I couldn’t believe that the person who wrote them could turn into such a monster. I didn’t figure out that the actual Lord Ruler was a Terrisman. This part is despicable since the Lord Ruler went to such great lengths to protect his role by hunting down other Terrisman. If it was possible, I lost even more respect for him. Such a hateful creature.
I do wonder why Lord Ruler feared the Deepness so much. The anticipation is killing me.
4. There was some back and forth about Elend throughout the story and we finally got to see him take a greater stand. Any predictions about what might happen in book two with Elend taking on leadership duties?
I’m going to be honest. I was totally thrown by Elend becoming King. Yes I understand that he was from a powerful house and such, but King, really? I still see him as a naïve kid so I’m curious to see what will happen in the next book. I know he has read a lot and seems educated but is he actually prepared to lead the people and the skaa? Having grand ideas is one thing, being a leader is completely different. This was the one part of the ending that did not sit well with me. And I consider myself a fan of Elend. I don’t have any predictions for the next book, but I am wondering what type of mess he will create. That didn’t sound very positive.
5. Lastly, provide a little wrap up of your experience with the book. What do you think Sanderson’s strengths are? How does this book stack up against other fantasies you’ve read?
I was excited to read this novel since I loved The Way of Kings. Saying this, when we first started I thought it would be a little bit of a letdown. After reading the first section, I thought it was an entertaining read, but not as powerful as TWOK. Then everything started to come together and by the end of the novel I couldn’t believe all the twists and turns, excitement, and agony. All I can say is bravo Sanderson. Bravo.
We will be continuing this series, but first we are doing a group read of Neverwhere. When I finished the first book, I didn’t think I could wait to read the next Mistborn book in the series but now I think it will make it even better. It is a little like Christmas all the waiting and anticipation will, I hope, make it even more enjoyable.
What makes a book powerful for me is the ability to keep me on my toes, not allowing me to sit comfortable in thought or predictions while keeping consistent with rules already set in place. All combined with character development that feeds my character-driven need and is a fabulous wordsmith. Sanderson accomplished this all for me and then some because he also has the knack for pretty darn good world-building. He really is an excellent storyteller. Like you, I am looking forward to reading the next book. I like your take – “a little like Christmas”.
His ability to surprise me all of the time really makes me want to read more by him. I have given up, well maybe not completely, trying to figure out what is going to happen next. Now I know that no matter how we get to the conclusion the ride along the way will be packed with action, mystery, surprises, and “a ha” moments. I marvel over his skill.
I think part of why Elend was named King was because of stuff that happened that we didn’t get to see. The skaa rebellion was falling apart, becoming violent within itself, going into chaos, and Elend stood up and gave this big speech that calmed everyone. To the skaa, the nobility were meant to rule. They wanted to overthrow the Lord Ruler in Kelsier’s name, but having a nobleman on the thrown will give legitimacy to their new kingdom. Elend can work with other nobles, and he is good to the skaa. It’s not perfect, but I can see why they did it and why the skaa accepted him has king.
I just finished The Way of Kings, and I actually liked Mistborn much better. It took me about 400 pages to really get into TWoK, and if I hadn’t loved Mistborn beforehand, I never would have gone past page 50. I didn’t have as much of an emotional connection in TWoK, or as much attachment to the characters, though I did come to love them in time. Just not as much as Kelsier’s crew. 🙂
I think I prefer TWOK over this one, but I haven’t finished the Mistborn series yet so that may change. I do like how Mistborn is available and I have to wait for the next installment of TWOK. I may prefer the one, though, since it was my first novel by Sanderson.
I’m really curious how Elend will handle being King. He has to be better than the Lord Ruler…and if he isn’t, then that would be an interesting twist. I can’t imagine many skaa wanting to go back to the days under the Lord Ruler though.
I know, Yes, yes, yes, yes and yes to all your answers. I was gutted when Kel died but then he had a plan. I do wonder though if he will be seen as a hero as things progress. Yes, he gave the skaa the motivation to rise up, but also he destroyed the mine – and if that turns out to be imperative in some way then people will not have fond memories of him anymore – they’ll just think he was reckless (‘the mob are fickle’ – that was out of a film but I can’t remember which – think maybe the Gladiator)
I also thought Vin was very reckless and was like ‘what, who where?’ but I was also having a bit of a punch the air type of moment because I felt like it was a turning point for her. I also wasn’t too worried about her chances at that point. I was actually more worried, hands, and cushion over eyes (which does nothing for reading) when Sazed was captured. Thankfully he was another one with a cunning plan. Phew. If he had died it would have been a proper spitting out the dummy moment for me! You can push a person too far after all!
And, yes, he was killing all his own people – how despicable. Even a bigger monster than we all thought. It still makes me wonder about Vin and his interest in her – perhaps she’s part Terrisman or perhaps he thought she was the one the propecy related to – do we even know what the original prophecy was for that matter or as that been lost??
I was also a bit concerned about Elend being appointed King. It seemed such a hasty decision and partly I just don’t see him as a leader – he seems very much like a idealist, he doesn’t have a lot of experience of things and has spent most of his time secreted away in little rooms with his friends without actually dealing with any issues. I hope that he can adapt. I actually like his character so to a certain extend I’m in his corner.
I’m already looking forward to the next read.
I still haven’t figured out why the Lord Ruler was hunting down Vin…and what a thing for her to learn, that her brother didn’t betray her. That was really interesting since that moment in her life defined her as a person and then she learned the truth. Will it change her?
Good point, what is the original prophecy…ummm did I just miss that part.
Seriously, the Lord Ruler, killing his own…just when you think you can’t hate a person more you learn something like this and you realize just how awful he really is. Sanderson knows how to create horrible characters. In literature it is fun to hate them…in real life, well that is a completely different story.
Poor Elend. I feel for him actually. I never got the feeling he wanted to do more than to study and now he will have to put his studies to action. Easier said than done.
Soon we will be able to continue the story and I’m super excited!