Hi guys and welcome to today’s First Lines Friday post!
Today’s featured book is on my TBR and honestly, I cannot wait to pick it up! I’ve been holding off picking this up for various reasons explained below. But I don’t want to bore you with the preamble – shall we get into today’s featured book?
Can you guess what it is from the first lines below?
Jasnah Kholin pretended to enjoy the party, giving no indication that she intended to have one of the guests killed.
She wandered through the crowd feast hall, listening as wine greased tongues and dimmed minds. Her uncle Dalinar was in the full swing of it, rising from the high table to shout for the Parshendi to bring out their drummers. Jasnah’s brother, Elhokar, hurried to shush their Uncle – though the Alethi politely ignored Dalinar’s outburst. All save Elhokar’s wife, Aesudan, who snickered primly behind a handkerchief.
Jasnah turned away from the high table and continued through the room. She had an appointment with an assassin, and she was all too glad to be leaving the stuffy room, which stank of too many perfumes mingling. A quartet of women played the flute on a raised platform across from the lively hearth, but the music had long since grown tedious.
Words of Radiance – Brandon Sanderson
Words of Radiance, Book Two of the Stormlight Archive, continues the immersive fantasy epic that The Way of Kings began.
Expected by his enemies to die the miserable death of a military slave, Kaladin survived to be given command of the royal bodyguards, a controversial first for a low-status “darkeyes.” Now he must protect the king and Dalinar from every common peril as well as the distinctly uncommon threat of the Assassin, all while secretly struggling to master remarkable new powers that are somehow linked to his honorspren, Syl.
The Assassin, Szeth, is active again, murdering rulers all over the world of Roshar, using his baffling powers to thwart every bodyguard and elude all pursuers. Among his prime targets is Highprince Dalinar, widely considered the power behind the Alethi throne. His leading role in the war would seem reason enough, but the Assassin’s master has much deeper motives.
Brilliant but troubled Shallan strives along a parallel path. Despite being broken in ways she refuses to acknowledge, she bears a terrible burden: to somehow prevent the return of the legendary Voidbringers and the civilization-ending Desolation that will follow. The secrets she needs can be found at the Shattered Plains, but just arriving there proves more difficult than she could have imagined.
Meanwhile, at the heart of the Shattered Plains, the Parshendi are making an epochal decision. Hard pressed by years of Alethi attacks, their numbers ever shrinking, they are convinced by their war leader, Eshonai, to risk everything on a desperate gamble with the very supernatural forces they once fled. The possible consequences for Parshendi and humans alike, indeed, for Roshar itself, are as dangerous as they are incalculable.
If you are a regular reader of my blog you will know that Brandon Sanderson is one of my most read authors to date. Having said that, I’ve been deliberately trying not to touch this series too quickly because he still has a lot of it to write!
I read The Way of Kings a couple of years ago now, I think, and I’m itching to get back into it. So far I think he has written 4 out of 10 books in this series, so I think I can indulge in number two soon. I really love how he creates elaborate magic systems and full plotlines without confusing us as readers. For me, these books take all the boxes and reading today’s extract in preparation of this post has reminded me of that all the more!
Brandon Sanderson has a way of drawing you in, which you may have gathered from the opening line of Words of Radiance above. I didn’t really need convincing to pick this up, but for anyone who hasn’t experienced his writing before, I hope it does. He is honestly one of the best fantasy writers out there in my opinion and I hope you can give him a chance!
Have you read any books by Brandon Sanderson? Have you started the Stormlight Archives series? Let me know in the comments!