#Review The Well of Ascension by Brandon Sanderson @BrandSanderson @Gollancz

If you missed my review of Book One: The Final Empire check it out here.

Description

The impossible has happened. The Lord Ruler is dead has been vanquished. But so too is Kelsier the man who masterminded the triumph. The awesome task of rebuilding the world has been left to his protege Vin; a one-time street urchin, now the most powerful Mistborn in the land.

Worryingly for her Vin has become the focus of a new religion, a development that leaves her intensely uneasy. More worryingly still the mists have become unpredictable since the Lord Ruler died and a strage vaprous entity is stalking Vin.

As the siege of Luthadel intensifies the ancient legend of the Well of Ascension offers the only glimmer of hope. But no-one knows where it is or what it can do.

Review

Vin, Elend and the remains of Kelsier’s crew are left managing the remains of Luthadel after the events of The Final Empire this sounds simple but there are armies descending on them from all sides wanting to take control of the city in addition to weird goings on in the mists which mean this unlikely bunch have to be stronger than ever to overcome everything being sent their way.

Yet again Brandon Sanderson presents a tome with a solid epic fantasy, this is not a quick read but there is so much going on all the time that you can delve in for hours at a time. The allomantic play by the mistborns is wonderful to read, so vivid that you can see them dancing around on the page clearly, pushing and pulling bouncing around on rooftops. We meet a new mistborn in this novel, Zane, and I very much liked his character and the way he connected with Vin.

There are a lot battles in this novel, some brutal, and the way Sanderson has written them from multi-POV’s and over multiple chapters to really bring you as a reader into the depth of the battle is just how I like it. I love Sanderson’s knack of writing plenty of detail, of reeling you in so that you can see, hear, smell everything, exactly how I like to read my fantasy. The worldbuilding in these books has been stellar and I have such a perfect picture in my head of every location, every building, every outfit and every person.

I’m really looking forward to delving into the next book in this series. Lucky it’s on my bookshelf already!

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleThe Well of Ascension
SeriesMistborn #2
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Genre: Fantasy | Epic Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz
Publication Date: 10 December 2009
Review Format: Paperback
Other Formats: eBook | Hardcover | Audio
Pages: 800
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon USWaterstones | Foyles | Book DepositorySpeedy Hen | Wordery | Audible

#Review: The Undomestic Goddess by Sophie Kinsella @KinsellaSophie

Description

Samantha is a high-powered lawyer in London. She works all hours, has no home life, and cares only about getting a partnership.She thrives on the pressure and adrenalin. Until one day… she makes a mistake. A mistake so huge, it’ll wreck her career.

She walks right out of the office, gets on the first train she sees, and finds herself in the middle of nowhere. Asking for directions at a big, beautiful house, she is mistaken for the interviewee housekeeper and finds herself being offered the job. They have no idea they’ve hired a Cambridge-educated lawyer with an IQ of 158 – Samantha has no idea how to work the oven.

Disaster ensues. It’s chaos as Samantha battles with the washing machine…the ironing board…and attempts to cook a cordon bleu dinner. But gradually, she falls in love with her new life in a wholly unexpected way.

Will her employers ever discover the truth? Will Samantha’s old life ever catch up with her? And if it does…will she want it back?

Review

It has been a while since I’ve read a Sophie Kinsella novel and I thought it would be good to pick one up as I love her writing style. Light and funny with a good dose of romance. I wasn’t at all disappointed with The Undomestic Goddess.

Samantha is a lawyer who runs faster than the speed of light from her job at one of the top law firms when she makes a whopper of a mistake, she quite accidentally runs into a job as a housekeeper for a hysterical couple who seem completely oblivious to the fact that Samantha has no clue what she is doing, even making a bed is completely beyond this poor woman.

Luckily the gardener Nathaniel is there to save the day in more ways than one and help Samantha discover who she is really meant to be.

Samantha was a lovely character, she starts stressed and sure that being a lawyer is everything she wants, her life passing her by working 70 hour weeks, as she gets to know Nathaniel and a simpler life she starts to question her ambitions and what she really wants.

Nathaniel is a lovely man, he has been putting other people first and putting his own ambitions on the back burner, something Samantha helps him understand. Together they unlock an understanding of what is important in life but what they have to discover is can their lives go in the same direction?

I thoroughly enjoyed delving back into a Sophie Kinsella, I will definitely not leave it so long next time.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleThe Undomestic Goddess
Series: N/A
AuthorSophie Kinsella
Genre: Chick-Lit | Romance
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 26 June 2009
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: Hardcover | Paperback | Audio
Pages: 416
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Waterstones | Foyles | Book Depository | SpeedyHen | Wordery

#Review The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson @BrandSanderson @Gollancz

A huge thanks to my blog readers who chose this book as my TBR Topple choice for July, apologies for the delay in getting the review up, I’m really behind with reviews at the moment, as you can tell! Remember, you can still vote for the TBR Topple book I read this month here!

Description

For a thousand years the ash fell and no flowers bloomed.

For a thousand years the Skaa slaved in misery and lived in fear while the Lord Ruler reigned with absolute power and ultimate terror, a divinely invincible leader. Hope is long lost, until a terribly scarred, heart-broken half-Skaa in the depths of the most hellish prison and discovered he has the powers of a Mistborn. A brilliant thief and natural leader, Kelsier will turn his talents to the ultimate caper: one with the Lord Ruler himself as the mark.

Only he’s not just planning the greatest heist in history, he’s plotting the overthrow of a divine despot.

Kelsier recruited the underworld’s elite, the smartest and most trustworthy allomancers, each of whom shares one of his many powers, and all of whom relish a high-stakes challenge. But even with the best criminal crew ever assembled, Kel’s plan looks like a long shot, until luck brings a ragged girl named Vin into his life. Like him, she’s a half-Skaa orphan, but she’s lived a much harsher life. Vin has learned to expect betrayal from everyone she meets, and gotten it. She will have to learn to trust, if Kel is to help her master powers of which she never dreamed.

Review

It’s difficult to sum up my thoughts about this book without giving too much away but I’m going to try. Brandon Sanderson has woven a world where the rich and the poor have a very definite division. The rich are living a high life, some of them are blessed with powers which raise them up and give them positions of importance within the Lord Ruler’s court, the best of these, the Mistborn are rare and highly regarded. For the poor, the Skaa, life is hard, a life of slavery, of servitude. Serving the whims of the rich and the Lord Ruler, struggling for food and a roof over their head in slums.

The world building is divine, you are transported into the locations and can’t help but feel a part of each building and street as the characters move around. It’s easy to see the transition between rich and poor and there is no confusion between locations and which areas characters are in.

The characters themselves are wonderful, far too many to talk about here, but the two main protagonists Vin and Kel were superb.

Kel is in his thirties, heartbroken after losing his wife, he’s quite vengeful, but also very intelligent and not one to jump in both feet first. He has a very clever plan and he is a natural leader, speaking strongly and confidently in a way that appeals to the people around him. His charisma oozes from him and there are few who can resist him.

Vin is a young girl, only fifteen/sixteen, she’s still coming into her powers as a mistborn, but she is exceptionally gifted. We see her fall in love for the first time and put everything at risk for that. She’s very strong but struggles with trust, given she’s been abandoned by everyone she has trusted in the past, that’s hardly a surprise.

Seeing the magic use and how it’s described in the book is clever to say the use, the way the elements are pushed and pulled to make them work, at first I was a little confused but it quickly becomes easy to work out what is happening and how they are working. During the fight scenes it was beautiful, like a dance and I was mesmerised reading page after page of these wonderful interactions.

This book was absolutely fantastic, I’m very much looking forward to getting my teeth into the next book in the series.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleThe Final Empire
SeriesMistborn #1
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Genre: Fantasy | Epic Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz
Publication Date: 1 October 2009
Review Format: Paperback
Other Formats: eBook | Hardcover | Audio
Pages: 676
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon USWaterstones | Foyles | Book DepositorySpeedy Hen | Wordery

Review: Circle of Desire by Keri Arthur

Description:
In ten years of working for the Damask Circle, shapeshifter Katherine Tanner has never come across anything that goes after kids the way this monster does, and she has never met anything that does to them what this thing does. And it’s not something she wants to confront. But with the Circle’s resources stretched to the limits, she’s given very little choice. The last thing she needs is interference from a cop who has no idea what he’s up against.

Continue reading Review: Circle of Desire by Keri Arthur