Monday, August 6, 2012

The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson Blog Tour: Week 1

Welcome to the discussion of Part 1 of The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson

If you want to follow the discussions, you can find the schedule at Stainless Steel Droppings.

The piece of artwork is Vin with a suitably giant koloss sword by Inkthinker.

So, we begin the last book of the trilogy and I hope that we will get answers to many of our questions!

The Prologue was a bit shocking, although we now have a name for the entity that Vin released at the end of Book 2: Ruin. We also have a name for a third form of magic: Hemalurgy, which seems to involve lots of blood, death and spikes. As we learn later, Marsh is desperate to break away from Ruin’s control, but seems unable to do so.

Do you think that the other Inquisitors are also so anxious to break free? Do you think that Marsh will ever be able to act independently, even for a moment?

Yet another year has gone by, but we can see an enormous change Elend. Not only has he learnt a great deal about his Mistborn powers, but he has also become much more of a leader.

Do you like this new Elend or do you think he has become too ruthless?

Through the diary entries at the beginning of each chapter we learn that Rashek altered the world to try to counteract the mists. He moved the planet nearer to the sun to burn off the mists, but moved it too close and so had to create the ashmounts to prevent the whole world cooking. Then he had to adapt the plants and animals to cope with the ash.

Knowing how much the Lord Ruler altered the life on the planet, do you think that anything can survive the encroaching Deepness?

We are finally seeing the kandra in their home. It seems that they are ‘awakened’ mistwraiths, but we do not know how this happens. Similarly, we do not know how the koloss are created, although they also owe their existence to the Lord Ruler. I find it interesting that Vin’s pet koloss calls itself ‘Human’.

How do you think that the kandra and koloss were created? Could this be another use of Hemalurgy? Also, what do you think of the kandra society?

The diary states that the metal that gave Elend allomancy is a piece of Preservation.

Do you think that Preservation is an entity similar to Ruin? If so, do you think it could be influencing events as well? Are they adversaries? Could they both be gods?

Finally, we know that the diary entries are written by the Hero of Ages.

Who do you think is / becomes the Hero?

I am sure that you have other questions that you want to discuss, so have at it!


  1. Your questions are so good! I'm trying to remember what I thought/felt the first time through this book. Hemalurgy is fascinating and horrifying at the same time. I feel so sorry for Marsh, and would guess he does eventually gain control, despite the seeming impossibility right now. I am not fond of the new Elend, though I know it's necessary for him to be the way he is. Allomancy seemed to change him, or perhaps just war and leadership in general. I miss the disheveled scholar of the first book. As for who is the Hero of Ages, my thoughts at this point were conflicted. The first entry automatically made me think of Sazed. It was written in his style of talking. But Sazed as the Hero of Ages was just something out of nowhere, so I thought maybe it turns out to be Vin after all. I could hear it in her voice as well.

  2. Hi Sue.  I'm very much behind with my reading this week (in fact, I haven't started this one yet - which is ridiculous considering how keen I am to reach the final conclusion).  So, I've not read your piece yet because I don't want to encounter any spoilers but I'll come back and join in as soon as I catch up.
    Lynn :D

  3. No problem, but read faster! :D

  4. I feel sorry for Marsh as well, because he has always seemed like a decent man. I hope that he does manage to get control of himself when it is important and that he has a hand in defeating Ruin.

    I can understand why the new Elend is not to your liking, but he does seem to be much more effective. I feel sorry that he has had to harden himself to get things done and I hope that the ends justify the means.
    Sazed as the Hero? Now that would be a shock, especially with his current crisis of conscious! :)

  5. I'm guessing that the diary entries are written by Vin.  I could be wrong, of course, but she seems the most likely suspect.

    I'm hoping Marsh has the strength to do what it takes when the moment comes.

    It was also interesting to see how the dynamic between Elend and Vin has changed since the last book.  They've both matured, and they're finally learning to trust each other.

  6. It is good to see Elend and Vin actually working well as a couple: all that angst in book 2 was starting to get a little annoying! :D

  7. One of the entries made me sure it was Vin -- it mentioned Elend in a way that it seems she would only talk about him. I would be really surprised if it wasn't her.

    And I was so disappointed with Marsh at the end of the last book so I was glad to know that he's still in there somewhere and that he's trying to do the right thing. But why could Zane fight Ruin's commands to kill people but Marsh can't? Was it because he was Mistborn? I will be interested to see what happens with the other Inquisitors too. I wonder if Sanderson will even go into that.

    I don't have a problem with Elend in this book. He's different but it's a necessary difference. I'd rather have him change and be tough than have him stay dreamy and been left behind or killed.

    I think the scene that stood out to me the most in this part was when Vin was talking to the Koloss slave. I didn't know that the Koloss had that much going on in their minds. They're even more scary now!

    (And does anyone else think the 1st generation Kandra aren't even there anymore? Do kandra eventually die of old age?)

  8. I think Ruin is much stronger now that Vin has released it into the world, and so its influence is much greater than when Zane was alive. However, it could be that Zane only had one spike, whereas Marsh has so many more, including new ones that I assume increase Ruin's control over him.

    I was also surprised by Human: I am not sure whether or not I want to find out how koloss are formed because I have a suspicion it will be somewhat 'messy'! :(

    I have a suspicion that the first generation kandra are probably fossilized lumps of jelly, or have turned to stone: they certainly don't seem to be very talkative! :D

  9. So Zane had the one spike through the heart to get Hemalurgy -- who gave it to him? I need to know! :)

  10.  I completely agree - like I said, that Sazed thought came as a complete surprise to me, but it was my very first thought on reading the first line of the new logbook-of-sorts. I think Vin is more likely though!

  11. I assumed that it would be another of the inquisitors, just like we saw Marsh 'upgrading' one of them.

  12. I am trying to keep an open mind, but that is because Mr Sanderson has surprised me before! :) 


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