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dcw7g
LSU Fan
Member since Dec 2003
1209 posts

Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
Love Brandon Sanderson, loved Mistborn, love Wax and Wayne. I got into fantasy through WoT, so I’m ok with doorstoppers full of characters and complicated backstories. All that said, Sanderson is trying way too hard in the Stormlight Archives. I’m struggling with RoW. Waaay too much needlessly specific minutiae, waaay to purposefully weird worldbuilding, waaay too much obscure cross-referencing with his other books. Crem, cremlings, spren (dissappointmentspren!), Shadesmar, chasmfiends, gemhearts, rockbuds, “safehands” (why?)... Braize is a planet! No, it’s a dimension! No, it’s hell! (Damnation). Everyone clear who/what is a shard of Cultivation? Anyone care? For all the time spent in Shadesmar, does that place make any sense to you? There’s good books somewhere in these tomes, but he’s drowning them in nonsense. That’s it, just needed to vent.


Sneaky__Sally
Alabama Fan
Member since Jul 2015
10119 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
Disagree, I absolutely loved the first two although Oathbringer dragged because of the characters. I am holding of on RoW and waiting on the 5th book to be released before going back through all 5.

I have rather enjoyed the attempt to create a very unique fantasy world, the maps / drawings and all that in between have helped give it some more depth. It isn't my favorite attempt at such a kind of effort but it hasn't hurt the story I don't think.

While I definitely don't understand everything that is presented, I have enough to keep up with the story and it isn't nearly as bad as some other series in terms of how confused I am while reading - the mystery is half the fun.
This post was edited on 2/16 at 10:33 am


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luvdoc
Shady Thicket, Down South
Member since May 2005
437 posts
 Online 

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
I agree, the elements of world-building were awesome, but I couldn't begin the third book after seeing that it was the first of many? prequels that were just going to more thoroughly "set the stage" than had already been overdone


Centinel
Alabama Fan
South Carolina
Member since Sep 2016
31606 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
quote:

but I couldn't begin the third book


Then you missed on some pretty bad arse things that happened.



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Sneaky__Sally
Alabama Fan
Member since Jul 2015
10119 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
I'm not really sure if I understand what you mean by Book 3 being the first of many prequels.

It follows chronologically from Books 1 and 2. While the Book 1 - 5 sequence I guess can be thought of as "prequels" for the Book 6 - 10 sequence, it seems very obvious that it is telling a very big and important story in its own right.
This post was edited on 2/16 at 2:58 pm


luvdoc
Shady Thicket, Down South
Member since May 2005
437 posts
 Online 

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
Perhaps I misunderstood the first chapter of the third book, included at the end of the second. It's been a while, so I don't remember names, but the old grizzled Warrior dude whose brother was killed at the beginning of the first book and who spent the next two books torturing himself about it, is shown as a younger man completing one of his many conquests. I had read that the third book was " his story" , and subsequent books would be the stories of the other main characters. I admit I didn't read to find out


Sneaky__Sally
Alabama Fan
Member since Jul 2015
10119 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
Ya, I think you misunderstood - he has said that each book sort of focuses on one character's story primarily (while still having other viewpoints) but it is all in the same timeline / service to the primary story taking forth.

They don't jump backwards in time and focus on the life story of specific characters.


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Fun Bunch
New Orleans Pelicans Fan
New Orleans
Member since May 2008
78337 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
quote:

Perhaps I misunderstood the first chapter of the third book, included at the end of the second. It's been a while, so I don't remember names, but the old grizzled Warrior dude whose brother was killed at the beginning of the first book and who spent the next two books torturing himself about it, is shown as a younger man completing one of his many conquests. I had read that the third book was " his story" , and subsequent books would be the stories of the other main characters. I admit I didn't read to find out


lolwat

Every book has flashbacks for important characters. Book 1 had Kaladin flashbacks. 2, Shallan. Book 3 had Dalinar flashbacks...which are probably the best ones.

I do agree that Rhythm of War was a chore at times, and I love this series. It took me FOREVER to get really into RoW. I really don't need that level of minutae with fabrials.


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Saskwatch
Ole Miss Fan
Member since Feb 2016
9510 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
I can see where your coming from but I just see them as pieces inserted to show how different the world is in the book.

Just started the fourth book. Wish they had more pictures of what the Parshmen and different forms looked like. Also some interesting plots going on between the characters.


dcw7g
LSU Fan
Member since Dec 2003
1209 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
quote:

Wish they had more pictures of what the Parshmen and different forms looked like.


That’s part of my problem. After all these huge books, millions of words, I’m still not sure exactly what parshmen look like. Or what spren look like. Or the Un-Made. Or a chull. And I get a friggin’ migraine trying to make a mental picture of Shadesmar - that place makes NO sense. It’s like Sanderson made a bet with someone to see how weird he could get.


Jay Are
New Orleans Pelicans Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Nov 2014
3030 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
RoW has a bunch of illustrations of spren, but Sanderson isn't exactly short on visual detail for these throughout the first three.


dcw7g
LSU Fan
Member since Dec 2003
1209 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
quote:

RoW has a bunch of illustrations of spren, but Sanderson isn't exactly short on visual detail for these throughout the first three.


Illustrations should not be necessary. And while there’s plenty of detail (words), they don’t create a coherent picture. At least not for me.


Sasquatch Smash
LSU Fan
Member since Nov 2007
14830 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
quote:

chull


I think there are pictures of chulls in the first or second book.

(First book)


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Sneaky__Sally
Alabama Fan
Member since Jul 2015
10119 posts

re: Stormlight Archives is needlessly complicated
It sounds like you just aren't really that into the massive world-building epic series he is going for with this 10 book saga (he wants this to be just the absolute maximum epic fantasy he can put out). That detail and minutia is necessary for the kind of series he is trying to deliver.

He isn't up to the level of say Robert Jordan for level of description and detail - I can vividly picture all the characters, cities, props, etc. in my head for Wheel of Time. But I think he does a pretty decent job at it. If he went too in depth with the detail of stuff like shadesmar it would grind the story to a halt (that is one big complaint with Jordan).

Plus trying to adequately describe certain things that readers don't have a good comparison to is challenging and it is sometimes better to let the reader fill in the blank for how they think it should look in their head.


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