Friday, December 6, 2013
Book Review: Steelheart
Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics.
But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came the desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his wills.
Nobody fights the Epics... nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them.
And David wants in. He wants Steelheart—the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David's father. For years, like the Reckoners, David's been studying, and planning—and he has something they need. Not an object, but an experience.
He's seen Steelheart bleed. And he wants revenge.
After reading this description for Brandon Sanderson's Steelheart, I just had to get my hands on it. And it was worth it.
What's exceptional about Steelheart is that, although this world is rife with powerful beings, there are no superheroes. No Superman or the Fantastic Four to swoop in and save the helpless little humans. The Epics are horrible, vicious killers who rule over the people by striking fear into their hearts. It's the regular Joes like David who get to save the day.
David is a very likeable protagonist. Things don't happen to him; he makes them happen. He's remarkably goal-oriented, which keeps the plot moving and there's never a dull moment. He's also just quirky enough to be easy to get along with.
The supporting characters are well-written and each one brings something different to the story. There is one character in particular who provides comic relief of some sort (when he's not making people scratch their heads), which balanced the somber tone of the book.
I especially enjoyed the logistics of taking down these Epics. Each Epic has an Achilles' heel, and the way David and his gang deal with them is fun and exciting. No two encounters are the same, and nothing is ever predictable. There are plenty of surprises in store for both the characters and readers.
In all, a great and fast-paced read that fans of post-apocalyptic YA would enjoy.