My puny words are insufficient to describe the experience of reading The Hero of Ages. When I started it, others described it as “epic”. Of course, contrary Mary thought “Well, we shall see if it’s epic. Let me be the judge of that.”
And, oh, is it epic. One of my favorite books ever.
I finished reading last night and was left with so many emotions. As I drove in to work this morning, I once again started thinking about the story and tears came to my eyes. Sanderson wove a brutal tale for the characters we’ve come to love and it is truly heartbreaking. We suffer the loss of many on the quest to defeat Ruin and complete the destiny of The Hero of Ages.
There are so many things I could talk about – character development, a story that is paced almost perfectly, etc. But, for all those wonderful things, Sanderson’s true genius lies in the world building. He created a magical system that is so intricate yet ultimately simple. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. In the end, it all came down to balance.
Vin has been the primary character since book one. (Kudos to Sanderson for writing a female character that doesn’t need a man to save her and is shown coming into her own as a woman. It’s, quite honestly, amazing that a male writer was able to so beautifully capture this transformation.) She has been the assumed Hero of Ages for some time. But, is she really? I’m not going to tell but if you pay close attention there are clues along the way that point to the Hero. While my guess was correct, I cannot be disappointed that I wasn’t “surprised”. The path to get there left many possible endings and I just happened to guess the correct one.
While there is a lot written about religion in this series, it’s more about faith and what it means to trust.
Lastly, this could have been a depressing book. It’s brutal. But, I was left with a feeling of hope. There was a joy in the resolution that I cannot dispute.
5/5 stars for a special ending to this wonderful series.