Simeon's Reviews > The Way of Shadows

The Way of Shadows by Brent Weeks
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's review
Aug 21, 2010

did not like it
bookshelves: utter-shite, fantasy
Read in April, 2010

The Way of Shadows is so laughably bad, I thought it was satire. Let me give you an example. So, near the end of the book, the protagonist is about to express his love to this girl after like 20 years of lusting, and at this point in the story, there's been a little cursing, the violence is PG-13 and badly written, all very YA. So, our protagonist approaches his lady and says to her (this is a direct quote):

"I think you're the most beautiful woman I've ever seen. And the purest. I'm not asking you to fuck. But maybe some day I'll earn the right to ask you for something more permanent." He turned and facing her was harder than facing thirty Highlanders.

Ahh, Brent Weeks. I think he has a little Vogon in him.
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Comments (showing 1-46 of 46) (46 new)

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

Don't be such a Vogonist, man :P

Simeon Haha, Vogons just wanna be loved.

message 3: by Rob (new) - rated it 1 star

Rob Phillips Totally agree, the writing of the sex scenes is aweful. I think i remember another sentence in that scene which was something like "and she was all that was lovely".

message 4: by Apatt (new) - added it

Apatt I just dumped this today, should have read your review first! Mr. Brent Months can't do decent characterization and the "life is worthless" mantra thing gets old fast.

Momentai I was fine with him saying "fuck" the first time with a slight cringe because he was screaming and a little out or it. But when he said it like twice afterwards I facepalmed hard. What else didn't you like about it?

Nabil yepp, it was pretty bad but i forced myself thorugh the whole book. I cant understand how this book is rated as high as likes of Tigana, blade itself and malazan series.
too many teenage girls here at goodreads?

Simeon Teenage boys more like ha

message 8: by Mike (new)

Mike Ward Thank you. I dropped this book after one chapter and wondered if perhaps I'd given up too soon since so many people love it. I see now it actually gets worse.

Andrew Obrigewitsch This is a YA book trying to be adult by using swear words and talking about sex, just like a 12 year old boy would. In fact the book read like a 12 year olds wet dream, what I don't get is why this story is rated so high on every website. It's really like the Jersey Shores of Fantasy.

Rachael Yeah, I gave this book about 4 chapters to grow on me. It severely lacks the quality of writing that I've come to prefer/appreciate.

Brian While I found the conversation you reference to be pretty bad as well, there were many f bombs throughout the book and the violnce is hard R. So it was not out of place at all; just poorly written.

Azoth Kage Book was the best book I have ever read. Here is what a real quote looks like
"I'm not finished," he said. "Elene, I've Watched over you since we were Children. For a long time, you're right, I couldn't see past your scars. I`m not going to give you some crap that they`re beautiful. Your scars are ugly, but you aren`t, Elene. The woman I see when I look at you is Amazing. She`s smart, she`s got a quick tongue, and she`s got such a heart that it makes me believe that people can be good despite all I've seen to the contrary for my whole life.” this is found on page 394-395 of Brent Weeks ”the way of shadows”. please read the whole thing next time

message 13: by Andrew (last edited Jan 22, 2014 04:24PM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Andrew Obrigewitsch This book was just bad, putting the full quote does not help that. I think it's enjoyable to the 12-20 year old crowd. It's one of those things that one outgrows, like laughing playing with GI Joes it's one of those things that most mature adults just finds straight up boring.

If you think obsessing about sex and cussing are signs one has grown up then this book is for you. If you think they are a signs of a virgin teenage boy trying to sound grown up then this book is not for you.

Azoth Kage sex and cussing are not the main point in the book nor is it the focus. the quote was showing how he really confessed his love not something about sex. nor was the part about the highlanders after. I reread the part. your age group is wrong to my 34 year old teacher liked it.

message 15: by Andrew (last edited Jan 22, 2014 09:14PM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Andrew Obrigewitsch Yeah, and some grown men collect GI Joes. Wait till you've read a few hundred books and then come back and reread it. You will see it for what it is.

The plot has the complexity of a video game. And the third book turns into a Wheel of Time knock off.

Here is my review of this book where I fully explain what is good and what is bad about it:

Azoth Kage lets just agree to disagree. you will never change my mind nor will I change yours. I was upset because he did not use a proper quote, or description of the earlier page.

Andrew Obrigewitsch Yeah at least we are both reading books. ;-)

Azoth Kage books are the best

Azoth Kage what is your favorite book

Andrew Obrigewitsch I don't really have a single favorite book and I find that as I age my tastes change. But below I have linked my favorites list, which are books that seem to have withstood the test of time:

Azoth Kage the mistborns are good books I just got my copy of number three two days a go

Brian Andrew, Azoth - I think my review summarizes how some could hate this book and some love it. Depends on what you are focusing on.

Andrew Obrigewitsch Yeah, Mistborn is pretty good, I've read every book Sanderson has written.

I highly recommend everything on my favorites list, Mark Twain takes the Knight stereo type and completely makes fun of it, one of the funniest books I've ever read: A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.

A Distant Mirror: The Calamitous 14th Century is the history of the 13 hundreds, from all the feudal battles with Knights to the black death.

Hyperion is a brilliant Sci-Fi story.

The Broken Sword is one of the first fantasy books written, it was published the same year as the first Lord of the Rings book. But I think it is actually better than the Lord of the Rings.

The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress, is quite enjoyable.

The Forever War is one of my favorite Sci-Fi stories. Starts a bit slow but it's brilliant in the end.

Final Blackout is a great Dystopian story written in 1939, it's been forgotten to some extent.

Dune is quite deep in places, but one of the most original stories you will read. It's basically a Sci-Fi fantasy.

Jesse Gomez This book was in no way PG-13... i mean child rape and all in the first 50 pages.... just saying.

message 25: by Mark (new) - rated it 5 stars

Mark Lawrence To be fair, what you've presented in your review as a direct quote isn't in fact a quote. It's a collection of words taken from across a page and joined together without the intervening words or context. It's very easy to make any author look silly that way.

Mr. Twinkie Mr. Lawrence got a point although the book is still silly written.

message 27: by Andrew (last edited Mar 28, 2014 09:44AM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Andrew Obrigewitsch Yes, but I personally remember that part of the story and remember almost spraining my eyes with the amount they were rolling. I would say the scene is actually sillier in context.

Here's a better summary of the Night Angel, It's a story about a deadly assassin, who rises from rags to being the best there is. That sounds pretty cool but wait, that deadly assassin is also a really awkward virgin that secretly loves everyone.

Now if a deadly-virgin assassin sounds cool to you, then by all means read it. If that almost made your eyes invert from amount of rolling they did, then this is not for you.

Mr. Twinkie I agree. But even if the review doesn't use a so called "direct quote" I don't think it really makes a difference:

"I think you're the most beautiful woman I've ever seen, Elene. And the purest. And the best. But I'm not asking you to fuck!"

Funny enough he repeats it later on the same page:

"I don't know, but I know I want to face it with you. Elene, I'm not asking you to fuck. But maybe som day, I'll earn the right to ask you for something more permanent."

So, yes, if the hormones are raging you might find this book to your liking.

Andrew Obrigewitsch The tag line should be, "The perfect killer has no friends, but he is a virgin that loves everybody."

Brian I love this thread. I both love and hate the series at the same time. All the criticisms are correct, and in many ways the book is godawful, but I also couldn't stop reading.

Andrew Obrigewitsch You should put a link to your review up Brian, as your profile is marked private, so we can't see anything on it.

Brian I changed my setting so it is viewable by all Goodreads members. I didn't even know it was private. There is nothing in my profile or review that I care about being seen.

Mr. Twinkie Brian wrote: "I love this thread. I both love and hate the series at the same time. All the criticisms are correct, and in many ways the book is godawful, but I also couldn't stop reading."

Yes, sometimes bad books can be like bad candy...

message 34: by Sparrowlicious (new)

Sparrowlicious I love reviews that point out exactly the things I don't want to read in a book. :D Many thanks.

Rozzer Uhh, he was saying 'fuck' 'cause Momma K told him to 'fuck' someone, as he couldn't have Elene, and it didn't need to mean anything. He is saying he doesn't simply want her for meaningless sex.

Mr. Twinkie Rozzer wrote: "Uhh, he was saying 'fuck' 'cause Momma K told him to 'fuck' someone, as he couldn't have Elene, and it didn't need to mean anything. He is saying he doesn't simply want her for meaningless sex."

Hmm, I might try saying this to a potential girlfriend then...

Andrew Obrigewitsch Rozzer game this book five stars, talking to Rozzer is like talking to someone that gave Twilight five stars, pointless.

Brittany I didn't find "fuck" out of place I just thought he was saying that to get a strong point through a young girl's head. She thinks he still can't see past her scars and he was frustrated. He didn't want to, as he said, end up like Durzo and Momma K. He's not fucking around, no pun intended :) I also liked the way the story was told in real time with different characters. I felt like it wasn't reading to me like I was an idiot bc nothing was repeated and I had to go back back a few times. In fact I read it again and was surprised at some tiny little pieces of information that can be correlated later, like the wolf in a dream he has which was merely a sentence.
I also love a good tragedy and this book seemed to be filled with them even down to the letter from his master he cannot read bc it's blood stained.
I have just stepped into this genre where I am usually captivated more by stories like Steven Pressfield. Don't mind a small stint where I've read plenty of girly books :) maybe as I delve more into this type of story I'll think differently. Andrew I will definitely check out the books on your list!

Dimitrios Completely disagree. The book seened to be YA but this was because it detailed Azoth's life from a young age. So it started as YA. And Kylar's use of the F word shows his sexual awkwardness and inexperience as an antithesis to his considerable experience in all other things in life. Everyone is entitled to his opinion of course but character analysis suggests the above.

Mr. Twinkie Dimitrios wrote: "Completely disagree. The book seened to be YA but this was because it detailed Azoth's life from a young age. So it started as YA. And Kylar's use of the F word shows his sexual awkwardness and ine..."

It is not only about how the dialogues are written but also about the whole narration. It is quite weak and is on level with ordinary fanfiction stories. The problem is that Brent Weeks tries to make the story serious but it falls flat when he is only capable of showing character traits by using awkward dialogue scenes and poor narration.

message 41: by Kay (new) - rated it 3 stars

Kay I don't mean to play the devil's advocate because I'm not too big on the book so far, but they did say fuck (and 'shitting shitting shit,' and other assorted curses) plenty of times throughout the book. Not that it was necessary, but they were there, nonetheless.

message 42: by Jenny (new) - rated it 1 star

Jenny I couldn't believe this part either.

message 43: by Kat (new) - rated it 1 star

Kat Bahahaha. What a quote. Man, I'm so glad I didn't finish this book.

message 44: by Ahmed (new)

Ahmed Al-Naqshbandi I agree. It is a horrible book.

Slick Well i liked this book XD I gave it 5 Stars.

Lindsay I also hated this book. Struggled through it for a year and I'm so glad it's over.

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