Ben’s Take on Warbreaker
Warbreaker was a title from last year that I never got around to reading. But I took the advice of Jessica Moyer at Midwinter and pulled this one off my shelf. And man am I glad I did.
I'm not going to bore you with a review, one that PW probably wrote better than I could. But I WILL say that this is one of the best epic fantasies that I've read in a long time. And as it's a stand alone (as opposed to a massive series) it's great to pick up and read without worrying about missing anything.
Where Sanderson really shines (as in his previous stand alone, Elantris) is in his magic. In some fantasies, the magic doesn't really seem to follow much rhyme or reason, or if it does, it doesn't seem very rigorous. But Sanderson's magic is, by the end of the book, explained and methodical -- he even gives charts in an apendix to explain the details! It's bound by its own set of physics, which for the discerning fantasy reader, is tremendously important.
Oh yeah, and the plot and characters are outstanding, too!