Shadows of Self – 2016 Reading Challenge Review

Whoo! Time for another fun year of expanding my reading. I really enjoyed the challenge last year, so I’m trying out another one for 2016. If you wish to join me, check out the 2016 Reading Challenge. Comment below and let me know what you’re reading, or feel free to give me suggestions if you know of a great book that fits.

For the first book of the challenge, I decided to start at the very bottom of the list with “A book that’s guaranteed to bring you joy.” Of course, that means a book by one of my all time favorite authors. I read Shadows of Self by Brandon Sanderson.

My matey Crue (from Redwall Survivor and also a personal friend of mine) loaned me the book at our NaNoWriMo TGIO Party.

Shadows of Self is the 5th book of the Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson. A sequel to Alloy of Law, it takes place around 300 years after the first three Mistborn books. This wild west-style fantasy follows lawman Waxillium Ladrian and his sidekick Wayne as they work to track down a murderer who’s determined to push the city into anarchy. Lots of mystery and clues lead Wax and Wayne throughout the city of Elendel as bits of the past rear their heads in the present world.

Sanderson is well known for pulling his amazing twists out of his pocket and Shadows of Self did not disappoint. I did manage to guess one big twist… and got totally sidelined by another. As always, there were plenty of fun bits (especially if they involved Wayne) that kept me laughing and occasionally cackling.

One thing I love about this series is that the first three Mistborn books are definitely a medieval fantasy, but the technology has changed in the 4th and 5th books so you’ve got guns, and the beginnings of electricity, and cars, and all sorts of other goodies. Yet the magic systems of Allomancy, Feruchemy, and Hemalurgy are still very active and have to be accounted for in the world as well, not to mention that the events of the first three books have become history and legend and to see how the world has been shaped since then is amazing. Sanderson has a great grasp of world building and all its different aspects.

As usual, anything by Brandon Sanderson comes highly recommended.

My next challenge book was predetermined by my husband, who likes to select a random book for me as a Christmas present each year. He generally wanders the bookstore and pulls out books that catch his eye and he reads the first page or so until he finds a good one. Usually, this method has worked well for him (and me) in the past. That said, the next book will be Malice by John Gwynne for “A book that’s more than 600 pages.”

It’s not too late to jump in and join the challenge. Comment below and let me know what you’re reading!

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