‘Mistborn: The Final Empire’ Casts a Spell on Readers

Jenny Xu, Executive Editor

Set in a medieval dystopian future on the ash littered streets of Luthadel, the capital city of the Final Empire, Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson is a unique must-read for all fantasy lovers. The Final Empire is under the reign of the Lord Ruler, an immortal god and dictator. When the Lord Ruler first began his leadership, he separated the country’s inhabitants into two groups – the nobility, and the skaa. The nobility were made up of people who supported the Lord Ruler when he first came to power, and the skaa were people who were against the idea of his leadership. Those of noble blood were granted allomantic powers, and eventually those allomantic powers made their way into the skaa’s bloodline.

Mistborn: The Final Empire follows the story of a 16 year-old half-skaa by the name of Vin. While living on the streets of Luthadel, Vin meets the infamous Kelsier and his crew, who are notorious for thieving. Kelsier decides to take in Vin as his apprentice and member of his crew. Though many aspects of the books are notable, what makes this book different from all other books would definitely be the magic system. Unlike most stories containing magic, allomancy centers around a system where the allomancer consumes and then draws upon and “burns” the metal consumed, giving the allomancer different abilities. Sanderson’s magic system is clearly very thought out, genius, and believable, especially when compared to other novels that include magic or wizardry.

One of my favorite parts of the book is how the world is laid out. Ash that rains down from the sky covers the surface of the land, and mysterious mists that come out at night renders nearly everyone terrified to leave the safety of their houses.

Sanderson has a truly magical way with words. Every chapter is intricate and packed with detail, enough to make you understand and enjoy reading the story, but not too much so that you’re overwhelmed by all the concepts and information.

With major plot twists in the book, Sanderson leaves you on the edge of your seat and unable to put it down. The ending of the book was completely unexpected, but left me pleasantly surprised.

Each character plays a vital role, and they all bring something different to the table. Vin’s growth throughout the book was realistic and well written, while we learned more about her past and lineage. Sanderson really expanded on how the Lord Ruler ascended to the throne, and how he became immortal, which I thought unfolded very nicely.  By reading from the perspective of the main characters, you’re able to relate to the characters and experience what they’re going through. All the characters have flaws and weaknesses, which makes them even more realistic. Personally, I would have loved to learn more about the individuals in Kelsier’s crew, and how they came to meet. I felt as if I knew the main characters very well, but all the supporting characters weren’t as elaborated on.

Though the book starts off a bit slow, it’s clear that Sanderson is simply laying down the foundation for what becomes a wonderful trilogy. Regardless of if you’re a fantasy lover or not, I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a great book to get their hands on.