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Publisher's Summary

According to mythology, mankind used to live in 'The Tranquiline Halls': Heaven. But then the Voidbringers assaulted and captured heaven, casting out God and men. Men took root on Roshar, the world of storms, but the Voidbringers followed. The Almighty gave men powerful suits of armor and mystical weapons, the Shardblades. Led by ten angelic Heralds and ten orders of knights known as Radiants, mankind finally won (or so the legends say).

Today the only remnants of those supposed battles are the Shardblades, the possession of which makes a man nearly invincible on the battlefield. The entire world is at war with itself - and has been for centuries since the Radiants turned against mankind. Kings strive to win more Shardblades, each secretly wishing to be the one who will finally unite all of mankind under a single throne.

On a world scoured down to the rock by terrifying hurricanes, a young spearman is forced into the army of a Shardbearer, led to war against an enemy he doesn't understand and doesn't really want to fight.

©2010 Dragonsteel Entertainment LLC (P)2011 Orion Publishing Group Limited

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Performance

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Story

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Love this narrating duo!

slow beginning, lots of world building but the payoff is huge, great 1st book and it really launched the next book, which is an absolute must read/listen too! the Sanderson/Kramer/Reading combo is dynamite.

14 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Jeremy
  • Balmain, Australia
  • 24-04-2015

Long - 45 hours and the first of 10 books!

Epic certainly sums up this work. After almost reaching the end of this 45 hour book, I did some quick searching on the net and found Brandon Sanderson is planning this is a 10 book series! If you're after a fast-paced story, this probably isn't for you. If you loved the Wheel of Time series you'll probably love it. (Personally, I gave up after about 7 books....).

The character development in this story is excellent as you'd expect and I certainly enjoyed the book. However, given its length and lack of excitement in many places I'm not sure I'll be back for book Two onward.

25 of 28 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Looking forward to starting the next book

When I first started listening to this I didn't realise it was the beginning of a 10 part series. It felt slow and there is a lot of history in the book so it jumps back and forth through time.I started to tire of leaning about of the people, locations and strange landscapes and artefacts of this world. I just wanted to get into the story. But once I realised how many more books where to come I felt like it was quite justified. The story is set in a world with weird creatures and landscapes and it does need a bit more time to set the scene then many other fantasies I've read.

In the beginning I also found some of the characters frustrating and a boring because they seems a bit 2D or simple. I really wasn't sure how much I was going to enjoy this book but then suddenly everything picked up! Things happened, characters developed and now I am hooked. There where a few nights I stayed up way to late because I just had to know what happened next.

Compared to other audio books I've listened to I found the narrators rather flat and this was very disappointing. I was also a bit confused at one point because they pronounced one of the characters names differently and it took me a moment to realise.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

LOVED IT!!!

I loved this sooooo much, characters are well developed, are all different enough to add to an exciting read and despite it's very long read/listen, it's worth every second. Brandon Sanderson has quickly become one of my faves.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

IF U liked 'the name of the wind'

amazing fantasy story that covers a few people's journeys through an interesting new world! loved it!

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • RFC
  • 04-11-2017

Epic story, mediocre delivery and writing

I really loved the world Brandon Sanderson created in this first book of the Stormlight series.
The peoples and countries in this story have peculiar customs and quirks that are novel and distinct from other fantasy novels.

Unfortunately, the literary execution of the story is not of the same quality. Background info is woven awkwardly into the story, many characters remain 2- dimensional even-though we spend a lot of time with them. The inner monologue and emotional states are described at length, but the author's unimaginative and repetitive choice of words leaves said thoughts and emotions strangely unuanced. We are frequently reminded how one character has a terrible case of survivors guilt, one is afraid to go mad (actually that is more than one characters' problem), one character is "clever" and overall everyone is "bemused" very often.

Listening to the book (rather than reading it) amplifies the impression of repetitive phrasing even more.
The reading performance is mediocre and uninspired. Curiously, both readers have the same mannerism to finish sentences with a slight upward inflection which, in the beginning, drove my up the walls. I alao assume that the reading was not carefully rehearsed but read mostly in one sitting without correcting for some obvious mistakes in intonation or emphasis.

A good reader can gloss over or make one forget some of the literary shortcomings of the author. In this case, however, the pair of readers, Michael Kramer and Kate Reading, are rather tedious to listed to.

This story is read by the same pair as the Wheel of Time books. Incidentally, I found the author's storytelling of the Wheel of Time had the same shortfalls as this work.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Worth the investment

Long book with huge scope. That final act is fantastic. Thank God I'm not a bridgeman. 5 stars all round. Excellent book. Expertly read.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

amazing!

if you like fantasy in the slightest, stop reading this and buy the damn book!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great listen

loved it, long but very detailed well and truly worth the listen. Great story and love the characters

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Monotone Duet

This audiobook has two readers, so just when you start to get used to the first guys flat american accent with his strange inflections and sentencing structure that make you squirm; they change the reader, the lady reader might as well be microsoft text to speech generator.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful