Reviews

Elantris, by Brandon Sanderson

nanditagoswami's review against another edition

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adventurous medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

5.0

gracedionnne's review against another edition

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4.0

I really enjoyed this book. I realize that I'm working my way through the Cosmere in a very strange order, having read Stormlight first and then moving on to Elantris. It's obvious from the start of this book that Sanderson has really grown as a writer since his debut, and at first I wasn't sure whether Elantris was going to grab me, but I'm glad my faith was well-placed. I still enjoy his grand, epic series more, but Elantris is a great story and I'm glad I read it.

In terms of characters: I was really intrigued by Raoden from the start, didn't connect with Sarene at first, and was totally convinced that I would hate Hrathen. However, in classic Sanderson fashion, these characters and numerous others found their way into my heart as I began to care about them. I enjoyed the exploration of Raoden's optimism and determination, and I really liked watching his journey, attempting to find a way to deal with being cursed instead of just searching for a cure. His charisma, intelligence and honesty made him a believable leader that people would gravitate towards. Sarene definitely grew on me. Some of her interactions near the start of the book showed me just how much Sanderson has grown in terms of prose and dialogue, but I did start to appreciate Sarene as we dove deeper into her motivations, emotions, and insecurities. I was so happy to find that she had more depth than I initially anticipated.

To talk about Hrathen, I need to mention that I really like how religion is dealt with in the Cosmere. I'm not religious, but Sanderson puts such care into the perspectives of religious characters that even if you don't agree with them, you can understand them. I also felt a connection to Hrathen in terms of his need for logic and understanding rather than unbridled passion alone. His perspective felt human and believable as an antagonist, which I thought was really well done. The only thing I didn't really buy was his internal profession of feelings for a certain other character. I just could not get on board with believing that; I could, however, have believed that those feelings were still developing.

The magic in this book is extremely interesting. I liked how it was executed in the sense that even though someone may be able to access the source of the magic, controlling and wielding it is another matter entirely. I enjoy it when characters need to train and work in order to see the payoff in their abilities. Also, the basis in character-based language was just really cool. It would have taken immense creativity to create the Aons (their names, symbols, and meanings) and to weave them so seamlessly into so many other aspects of the world. Seons were also fascinating! Sanderson did all of that so well in just one book. I thought that was fantastic.

In terms of plot, I thought I knew where things were going, but for many plot-lines I was WAY off. The pacing was comparatively slower near the beginning of the book, but the second half of this story was a wild ride. The way that events unfolded really drew me in, and once I got to the 80% mark of the book I couldn't put it down until I was done. In a way, it's comforting to know that the Sanderlanche has been around since his first book, drawing readers in and then burying them in the excitement of everything being drawn together during the final sequence. I found the ending satisfying for a standalone, though I realize that he left some threads open for a sequel, which I will gladly read once it exists!

I can't wait to dive into more of the Cosmere!

wongerz64's review against another edition

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lillyandbooks's review against another edition

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adventurous mysterious slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

3.5

hynekozana's review against another edition

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adventurous emotional hopeful mysterious reflective slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.75

rhysciar's review against another edition

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4.0

I'm glad I gave this book a chance. I wasn't really interested in Elantris, only picked it up, becuase of the Cosmere Universe, but after all, I'm glad I did. This was an interesting story, one I wish to continue, and was much better than I anticipated. As Sanderson wrote it after the epilouge, "characters and emotion are the true magic", and idos domi this is so true here. Every one of the characters are great, and though you can feel this is Sanderson's first book, the emotions are right there too. Elantris is just a good book. :)

dooziekins's review against another edition

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adventurous dark mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

4.25

hufflepuffily's review against another edition

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adventurous medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.25

tilla's review against another edition

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adventurous mysterious tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

4.5

jasnahkholin's review against another edition

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3.0

it was a solid read, more politics than fantasy which isnt my fave.