Shadows of Self by Brandon Sanderson is the second book in a fantasy series which follows the adventures of a “lawman” named Waxillium, Wax for short, and his deputy Wayne, (Ha ha. Get it? Wax and Wayne?) along with a supporting character, Marasi, as they fight crime in the big city Elendel. The best way to describe the series is Wild West meets Roaring ’20s.
Even though this book read like a crime novel, Sanderson interwove it beautifully with the fantasy world he created in which “powers” can be obtained through metal either by ingesting it (Allomancy) or wearing it (Feruchemy). To provide further context, this current series actually takes place centuries after a trilogy called Mistborn.
I have to say, the way Sanderson portrays the changes and advancements of this society is phenomenal. It was absolutely realistic while still upholding the rules of the original fantasy world, and even referenced the events of the original series as pieces of history. Coming across and understanding the story behind each of those references was thrilling. It was particularly exciting when…Nope, never mind, that treads into spoiler territory.
Even more impressive is that this novel took place over a twenty-four hour period. I don’t know about you, but I find it stunning when an author manages to make over 300 pages last the span of a day. Sanderson’s writing was thoroughly engaging, the plot well-paced with a subtle amount of suspense, and the story wrapped up in such a way that, while satisfying, still left an appropriate amount of unanswered questions to propel the reader to the next book. I, for one, can’t wait to get my hands on the rest of this series.
And now, the reveal of what I’ve been hinting at for a month: I have launched a YouTube channel! If you’re interested in a more in-depth review of this book, click here. Warning: video contains spoilers.