Friday, December 19, 2008

"Mistborn: The Well of Ascension" review

Before I dive into this review, let me warn you of this: the review of Well of Ascension (from now on referred to as WoA) will go deep into spoiler territory from Book 1, entitled Mistborn: The Final Empire,or Mistborn if you're short on time.

WoA picks up a year after where FE (heh, iron, metal joke) left off and where most fantasies end. The Ocean's 11-esque scheme worked exactly as Kelsier intended, including the death of a major character, and Vin, a Mistborn girl herself, killed the Lord Ruler and ended his thousand-year reign. Now she and Elend Venture, the man she loves, can rebuild the world, better than it was before.

Only it's not so simple.

Suddenly, three different armies attack the city of Luthadel, one of which is led by Elend's father, Straff. Not only that, but Elend begins to realize that giving power to the people just might not be the best thing just yet, especially since he isn't acting very king-like. And Vin starts to see phantoms in the mist-- one, an enemy Mistborn, and the other made entirely from mist.

The mists are starting to come out in the day now. And they kill people at random. Vin is on the verge of believing that the Lord Ruler may have been doing something right. And she, not he is the Hero of Ages. That's a lot on everyone's respective plates.

Maybe killing the Lord Ruler was the easy part, after all...

WoA pulls itself out of the muck that is normally reserved for the middle volumes in trilogies to deliver a sequel that is every bit as good as the first. In fact, some things are better. The book is bursting with action, suspense, romance, intrigue, and revelations, and I've just scraped the surface of the plot for this description. It's a satisfying read on all counts, and while it doesn't end as completely as FE, it gives enough closure to make it feel less cheesy and to make the wait for the time when I'm able to sink my teeth into The Hero of Ages, Book 3 in the trilogy, slightly more bearable.

My rating: 9.5/10

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