**spoiler alert** After Game of Thrones it seemed like you read the first book of an absolutely brilliant, fantastic, mind blowing and flawless trilog...more**spoiler alert** After Game of Thrones it seemed like you read the first book of an absolutely brilliant, fantastic, mind blowing and flawless trilogy. Well, after Clash of Kings you feel like you read the second volume of a 7-8 fantasy epic saga. Things start to SLOW DOWN big time.
I was a little bit disappointed to be honest. Okay Clash of Kings is still better than 95% of the fantasy novels out there. But Martin stumbled over himself. If its predecesor gets five stars, this should only get two stars. Where the first book was perfectly paced and moving forward all the time (in the first 100 pages people travel from Winterfell to Kings Landing), this book has its fillers and very slow storylines, especially: - Jaime sits in Riverrun and does nothing - Daenerys has maybe 5 chapters and does practically nothing but wander around (very disappointing after the great Khal Drogo story and the hatchted dragons) - Sansa sits in King's Landing and hopes to escape - Arya is captured and stays in Harrenhal - Jon is exploring behind the wall and trying to find his uncle
The storys of this five characters slowed down/did nothing after book 1 and all the important change does not start till the end of Clash of Kings or even the start of Storm with Swords.
However: Catelyn's, Tyrion's, Theon's, Brandon's and Davos' Stories are great. Davos is a little bit shallow and his POV seems sometimes chosen practical just to have a viewpoint for Stannis army.
To sum it up: Theon and Tyrion carry the book character- and plot-wise in my opinion.(less)
There are a few reasons why this book is so great:
1) STRUCTURE AND PACE: Game of Thrones is one of those rare Fantasy Novels that are perfectly paced...moreThere are a few reasons why this book is so great:
1) STRUCTURE AND PACE: Game of Thrones is one of those rare Fantasy Novels that are perfectly paced in my opinion. There is not a single boring chapter in this book. Martin takes the "arrive late, leave early" attitute in his chapters to perfection. So he leaves the characters on a high point and starts a chapter in the middle of an action or after a lot of stuff happened. This results in very few filler moments and a very forward driven structure. I'm a slow reader but you can not put that book down. Since the chapters are also very short it has this "just one more..." feeling to it.
2) CHARCTERS: Okay some of the characters are total stereotypes. The drunken but good heartet fool king, the nasty plotting queen, the good daughter and the bad boy-like daughter. Arya is a bit too likeable and Tyrion is a bit too whitty. But Martin characterizes them so well that this doesn't matter. You feel for them and you are moved by their fates. What more can you want. It's always said that all characters in westeros are shaed of grey but here you cleary have a somewhat "good side" and "bad side". I guess this will chnage in later novels. You can't argue that at least Geoffrey is truly absolutely evil, he takes pleasure in the misery of others.
3) STORY: Perfect scope in this big world. Some expected deaths and some very surprising deaths. Especially one is the real shocker in this book but it works perfect in this world and for all the chartcters. The mixture between medieval europe and few fantasy bits is exactly my taste. But this is clearly a first chapter in a long series, so a lot of things are left open and all characters are not fully developed. Can't wait for A Clash of Kings!(less)
**spoiler alert** I have to give the whole book 2 stars, because it was "just ok". The ending was of course very good and original, but you have to wo...more**spoiler alert** I have to give the whole book 2 stars, because it was "just ok". The ending was of course very good and original, but you have to work yourself through 400 painful pages. My main problems:
- STORY: Brandon said he wanted the book stand on its own. In my opinion, he failed completely in that regard. The biggest part of the book deals with the consequences of the first novel. The last 50 pages are exposition for the last novel.
- STRUCTURE AND PACE: The Pace of the first 350 pages is horrible. The story could be compressed to maybe 50 pages and deals with the siege of Luthadel and Elend's struggle as King and boring politics. It starts to get interesting at the first climax at around page 450 (Vin kills Zane)! Then the typical "Brandon Avalance" hits and its all resolved and very rushed. Only the last 50 pages deal with the Well of Ascension and are nothing more than a teaser for book 3... but to be fair, they are very good.
- CARACTERS: Okay Kelsier was my favourite character in book 1 and after TWoA I know why: He tied together the whole crew. In this book the crew is absolutely shallow and unimportant. Some of them were so obsolete that Brandon noticed this and killed them off (Clubs, Dockson). Main Characters are of course Vin, Elend and Sazed. The Terrisman is great and the best character in the book. His inner struggles are great, his relationship with Tindwyl is subtle, yet intersting. But to be honest I found the love-relationship of Elend/Vin very boring and especially Elend is very uninteresting. Also no surprise that he has to become an Allomancer, even Mistborn, because there would be nothing to write about him in book three. I just hope we won't see a "Vin trains Elend"-theme in the final novel. So every main character is now a superhero (except maybe Spook) because the author ran out of ideas.
I really can't understand why many people rate this book so high. Maybe it's the fantastic finale and the end leaves them with a false impression of joy. But the Well-ending doesn't even belong to the mains story of the book and I believe that you shouldn't have to work through 450 pages to come to the interesting parts. Read "The Final Empire", then the summary of book two and then "The Hero of Ages".(less)
- The Setting: Red Sky, disturbing city, the bad guy won 1000 years ago
- The Two Main Characters: The...moreThere are so much things I love about this book:
- The Setting: Red Sky, disturbing city, the bad guy won 1000 years ago
- The Two Main Characters: The characterization of Vin is just great. This novel is about trust and how Vin has to overcome her fear. Kelsier is hands down one of my favorite novel characters. His humor, his determination... fantastic!
- The Story: Sanderson intended Mistborn to be a heist-story where every crew member has different talents and is needed to overthrow the final Empire. He succeeded.
Just two things that ruined the fun for me a bit:
1. Sanderson has a bit of a "repetitive situation"-theme going on. That means that the main character has to go through several similar meetings with a different knowledge base. Vin going to a nobleman's ball is interesting the first time, but please not over and over again. This reminded me also of "Elantris" where Sarene has to go to partys.
2. Although I know that Sanderson's trademark is a interesting new magic system, he has to be careful that it doesn't serve self purpose so much. Allomancy and its explanation is great in the beginning an where its important for the future story, but I do not want to read pages of detailed fight-instructions for future Allomancers.(less)