Petrik's Reviews > Dawnshard

Dawnshard by Brandon Sanderson
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it was amazing
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Recommended for: The Stormlight Archives & Cosmere fans

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Dawnshard is a magnificent warm-up to the upcoming Rhythm of War.

Dawnshard is a novella, or short novel, in The Stormlight Archive series by Brandon Sanderson. I think many of you have known that I am a devout fan of Sanderson’s Cosmere universe. No, seriously, I love the Cosmere universe so much that I actually felt annoyed when Sanderson decided to focus on Skyward instead of finishing Mistborn: Wax and Wayne series first. But let’s get back on topic. I knew Dawnshard will be a wonderful book, and I knew it will provide character development and other necessary information for the future of the series. What I didn’t expect, however, was that it will shed light on so many Cosmere hints and revelations.

Dawnshard takes place after Oathbringer and before Rhythm of War, it follows the story of Rysn as she’s tasked to go to Akinah. I haven’t read any previous chapters released for Rhythm of War, but I know for sure that the events that happened in Dawnshard display immense implications for the future of Roshar and the entire Cosmere universe. It is frankly insane. I just don’t know how Sanderson does it. This novella exceeded Edgedancer in every possible way, and I’m so pleasantly surprised by how important it was on the grander scheme of the Cosmere.

“That was the thing about omens—they were made up. Imagined signals of something nebulous. So why not make them up to be something positive?”


I never thought about it before, but Sanderson’s decision to put Rysn and Lopen as the two POV characters in this novella is such a brilliant move. Approximately half of the book takes place in a seafaring travel section, but it was never boring; Sanderson developed Rysn, Lopen, Cord, Huio, and also include stunning revelations about Cosmere in this section; entire book, actually. One of the things that Sanderson tried to do carefully in Dawnshard is to make sure the representation of disabled characters—mainly paraplegic—is done right. He has consulted and did his research. Now, I will not be presumptuous and say he has done it well; I believe this can only be judged by someone with the same issue, and I’m not. However, I would like to digress that this book made me feel more empathetic towards them. One of my younger brother’s legs is disabled since he was born, and this book occasionally made me stop and think about what he went through growing up.

“Everyone else pranced around without ever having to worry they were a burden to others. Never remaining in the same place—when they longed to move around—because they didn’t want it to be a bother. They didn’t know what they had. But Rysn knew exactly what she’d lost.”


Do note that this doesn’t mean that Dawnshard is a gloomy book. I think Sanderson’s books, all of them, aren’t like that. Sanderson always makes sure to include positivity in the bleakest of moments, and this feeling of invigoration I got from reading his books is something that I’ve come to truly appreciate from his works. This is why Lopen’s POV matters more. Lopen was hilarious in the main novels, and I personally found that Dawnshard deepens his characterizations further. Come to think of it, Lopen reminded me a lot of Wayne—another supporting character I loved—from Mistborn: Wax and Wayne series. I loved the positive attitudes that he brings with his existence; he genuinely just wants the people around him to be happy.

“But it’s nice to make people laugh at you for something you do, and not something you can’t control. You know?”


However, as much as I praised Rysn and Lopen, I have to say that the most pleasant surprise in character development, for me, was Huio. I didn’t think of him as remotely important in the main series so far, but Dawnshard successfully and efficiently established him as one of the supporting characters to watch out for. The same can also be said for Cord, Chiri-Chiri, you know what? Consider what I just said moot point because it applies to practically everyone now. I’m just seriously impressed with Dawnshard; I liked Edgedancer but Lift infuriated me non-stop there, and she made me hate the word ‘pancake’. Not only the overall content of Dawnshard felt so much more important to the scope and main story of The Stormlight Archive, but it also extrapolates the importance of having a positive mindset in the daily course of our lives. Superstition or bad omens are a big theme in Dawnshard, and Sanderson showcases examples of why sometimes bad omens can be turned around by simply shifting our mindset and perspective.

“You could always defeat gloomy Passions with optimism and determination. Even the worst highstorm dropped fresh water.”


One last thing before I conclude this review, which somehow ended up being longer than I expected. I’ll make this as spoiler-free and vague as possible, but if you’re caught up or understand the mechanism behind the Cosmere universe, Dawnshard is about to stun you with many mindblowing insights. One of the biggest hints is the implication that materials from other worlds in the Cosmere could be traded and appear in different worlds now. Aluminum is here, and I’m sure it will be as well in Rhythm of War and so on. Think about the usage of Aluminum in Mistborn series. From reading Oathbringer, we knew this could happen, but to see it appearing here (unless I’m mistaken) is truly a sign of great things to come in Rhythm of War and pretty much all future Cosmere books. Also, if I have to mention a growing and worrying issue from reading The Stormlight Archive so far, it would be that the characters and their healing power have become way too powerful. Well, Dawnshard has pretty much exhibited how this issue will be negated; several counter-mechanism has been shown, and our beloved characters will probably suffer more. Soon.

“Sometimes you need to accept what you’ve lost, then move forward. Then you can instead realize what you’ve gained.”


It’s astounding to me that there’s still so much about this relatively short book I could talk about here, but I’ll stop for now. I hope the day will come when Rysn becomes one of the main characters in the main novels. In less than 300 pages, I already preferred reading Rysn as one of the main POV characters compared to Shallan. There, I’ve said it. I would like to say that Dawnshard isn’t mandatory to read, but I can’t. Honestly, I’m still shocked and amazed by all the revelations I attained from reading this short novel. Dawnshard is an incredible appetizer before we devour the next main menu in The Stormlight Archive: Rhythm of War. More importantly, this is a must-read volume for many of us who’s adapting “Journey before destination” in our lives as we make our way through traversing every single piece of art in The Stormlight Archive and Cosmere universe. Needless to say, this is an amazing novella/short novel. Last but not least:

I am ready for the Rhythm of War.

Sidenote:
Currently the ebook of Dawnshard is only available for Kickstarter backers. If I’m not mistaken, the ebook will come out on the 10th of November on Amazon and other stores. The physical copy will be published next year.


You can pre-order the book from: Amazon UK | Amazon US

You can find this and the rest of my reviews at Novel Notions

Special thanks to my Patrons on Patreon for giving me extra support towards my passion for reading and reviewing!

My Patrons: Alfred, Alya, Annabeth, Blaise, Devin, Diana, Edward, Hamad, Helen, Jimmy Nutts, Joie, Lufi, Michelle, Mike, Miracle, Nicholas, Zoe.
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Reading Progress

July 19, 2020 – Shelved
November 6, 2020 – Started Reading
November 6, 2020 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-35 of 35 (35 new)

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message 1: by Declan (new)

Declan Sounds like a FANTASTIC book. I was very excited as soon as I heard Lopen was going to be in this one!


Petrik Declan wrote: "Sounds like a FANTASTIC book. I was very excited as soon as I heard Lopen was going to be in this one!"

It was wonderful. So much better than I expected! :)


message 3: by Eva (new) - added it

Eva I'm confused about the release date: isn't it in December, *after* book 4 comes out? How are we supposed to read the series in the proper order when 3.5 comes out after 4 (I'm not going to wait)? Does anyone know?


message 4: by Audrey (new) - added it

Audrey OMG I’m so restless to go back to roshar , I learned english specifically for the WOK that kind of love isn’t lie 😂😂😂 Sanderson is a great author and a great human being too. Two years ago I ask him the title of the new stormlight and he answered to me Rythm of war omg yes he spoke to me lol. Too bad the dragon republic is so good I have to finish with Rin before I return to roshar lol... dilemma’s readers


message 5: by Petrik (last edited Nov 07, 2020 05:11AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Petrik Eva wrote: "I'm confused about the release date: isn't it in December, *after* book 4 comes out? How are we supposed to read the series in the proper order when 3.5 comes out after 4 (I'm not going to wait)? D..."

It comes out next week, Eva! The pre-order link is up already on iBooks: https://books.apple.com/us/book/dawns... :)


message 6: by Eva (new) - added it

Eva So weird - why isn't it available (not even for pre-order) on Amazon (at least not in Germany)? I don't use apple ibooks.


Petrik Audrey wrote: "OMG I’m so restless to go back to roshar , I learned english specifically for the WOK that kind of love isn’t lie 😂😂😂 Sanderson is a great author and a great human being too. Two years ago I ask hi..."

Hahaha that's super cool! Well, I hope when you do get to this one, you will love it, Audrey. Dragon Republic and The Burning God are great books, I won't fault you for reading that one first! :D


Petrik Eva wrote: "So weird - why isn't it available (not even for pre-order) on Amazon (at least not in Germany)? I don't use apple ibooks."

They're working on it right now. Sanderson has mentioned this. But the release date should be the same. So on the 10th of November, check Amazon and I think it should be there, too.

https://twitter.com/BrandSanderson/st...


message 9: by Tanya (new) - added it

Tanya Oszadszky he responded to my comment on FB saying hopfully next few days


Petrik Tanya wrote: "he responded to my comment on FB saying hopfully next few days"

It's available to pre-order on Amazon now! I just checked! :D


message 11: by Eva (new) - added it

Eva Yay!! Very happy it's online now. Thanks for the update. :-)


Petrik Eva wrote: "Yay!! Very happy it's online now. Thanks for the update. :-)"

You're welcome! :)


message 13: by Joe (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Yes, I can't wait for this! Its gonna have to wait until after I read Fires of Vengeance, though. Hopefully I can get through both before Rhythm of War drops on the 17th.


message 14: by A.R (new) - rated it 5 stars

A.R Great to hear you love it so much! Like i said on youtube, I really hope it comes out next week so I can grab it!


Michelle (Witchy Books) i can't wait till it comes out on the 10th. I need to read this :)


Petrik Joe wrote: "Yes, I can't wait for this! Its gonna have to wait until after I read Fires of Vengeance, though. Hopefully I can get through both before Rhythm of War drops on the 17th."

Two more days and The Fires of Vengeance will be out, Joe! Can't wait to hear what you think about it. I thought it excels over the first book in every possible way! :D


Petrik A.R wrote: "Great to hear you love it so much! Like i said on youtube, I really hope it comes out next week so I can grab it!"

Thank you, bro! It will come out in two days! The pre-order link is up! :)


Petrik Michelle (Witchy Books) wrote: "i can't wait till it comes out on the 10th. I need to read this :)"

It was so good. I hope you'll enjoy it, Michelle!


message 19: by A.R (new) - rated it 5 stars

A.R Just curious Petrik you get a ARC of RoW?


Petrik A.R wrote: "Just curious Petrik you get a ARC of RoW?"

Nope! xD

No worries, though, I'm okay with waiting for this one! :)


Michelle (Witchy Books) Petrik wrote: "Michelle (Witchy Books) wrote: "i can't wait till it comes out on the 10th. I need to read this :)"

It was so good. I hope you'll enjoy it, Michelle!"


Thanks i hope i do too :)


message 22: by MK (new)

MK So grateful I’m not the only one who got annoyed that there is still longer to wait for the par Wax and Wayne. I love Skyward but I’ve waited too long for the other.


message 23: by Petrik (last edited Nov 08, 2020 09:27AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Petrik MK wrote: "So grateful I’m not the only one who got annoyed that there is still longer to wait for the par Wax and Wayne. I love Skyward but I’ve waited too long for the other."

Oh believe me, I have ranted about this so many times. Don't get me wrong, though, I consider him one of my favorite authors, and I don't even mind reading an unfinished series, but I think the thing with Wax and Wayne is that we KNOW Sanderson can finish it quickly first instead of writing 3 books in a totally new quartet before writing Lost Metal; this is assuming that he doesn't postpone it again. The Bands of Mourning was released in 2016, that's 4 years ago, and I hope the current plan to release it in 2022 doesn't get delayed again! :/


message 24: by JD (new) - rated it 5 stars

JD Totally agree with you about this being required reading for the series. I had a friend ask me the other day if she had to read the .5’s to understand everything. I’ll be revising my answer after this 😄


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

Luis Santos Yes!!! Everything you said I concur 100%!!! My mind is totally blown away. You can feel how everything is coming together in the whole Cosmere.


Petrik JD wrote: "Totally agree with you about this being required reading for the series. I had a friend ask me the other day if she had to read the .5’s to understand everything. I’ll be revising my answer after t..."

Yeah! Edgedancer can be skipped, I guess, but I think this one is mandatory for The Stormlight Archives readers. So much new information! :D


Petrik Luis wrote: "Yes!!! Everything you said I concur 100%!!! My mind is totally blown away. You can feel how everything is coming together in the whole Cosmere."

I got goosebumps when I saw the word Cosmere actually mentioned here. And there were so many more! That revelation about Dawnshard, too. Damn! (mindblown!)


Anna Marie Fantastic review as always! I finished it last night and am honestly still gathering my thoughts...so much was packed into so few pages!! I loved the exploration of Rysn's character and can't wait to see her take on more of a role throughout the rest of the series (hopefully) and I've loved Lopen since his and Kaladin's first interaction, so the two POVs were perfection for me too! Dawnshard was definitely the perfect precursor to Rhythm of War! There's so much more to learn!!!


Petrik Anna Marie wrote: "Fantastic review as always! I finished it last night and am honestly still gathering my thoughts...so much was packed into so few pages!! I loved the exploration of Rysn's character and can't wait ..."

Thank you so much, Anna Marie! Yeahh this book still hangs on my mind even though it's been three days since I finished it! Rysn has become such a great character, I hope we get to see more of her in the main series! One more week to Rhythm of War, and I'm sure what we learned from this novella will play a part in the book! :)


message 30: by Yuri (new) - added it

Yuri How did I not know about this but have it on my TBR? lol
So cool that Sanderson wrote this novella. Going to buy it right now! :D


Petrik Yuri wrote: "How did I not know about this but have it on my TBR? lol
So cool that Sanderson wrote this novella. Going to buy it right now! :D"


Well now you know! The novella comes out tomorrow, so you're right on time! xD


message 32: by Joe (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe I just finished The Fires of Vengeance and I'm about to start this. Your review has me very excited for it!


Petrik Joe wrote: "I just finished The Fires of Vengeance and I'm about to start this. Your review has me very excited for it!"

Fires of Vengeance was amazing isn't it!? I hope you'll love this one. Rhythm of War is in 5 days!!! :D


message 34: by Joe (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Yes, Fires of Vengeance was amazing! I'm almost done with Dawnshard and loving that, too. I'm a big fan of The Lopen!


Petrik Joe wrote: "Yes, Fires of Vengeance was amazing! I'm almost done with Dawnshard and loving that, too. I'm a big fan of The Lopen!"

Great to hear that! Haha we love The Lopen! And Rua! :D


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