Many authors do one thing exceptionally well: world building, character creation and growth, or an intricate plot. Brandon Sanderson does an incredible job at all three. The world is very unique, with creatures and a magic system I never could have imagined. The world and the magical system are also notable for their internal consistency. The creatures described seem like the sort that would evolve together. The magical system follows clear, consistent rules. The world building take place through slow, constant information sharing, in parallel with both an epic, world-wide conflict and moving personal stories. The story wasn’t always straight forward or predictable and I loved the unexpected obstacles which forced every character to grow and change in order to succeed.
Fortunately, the audiobook narration was just as good as the story. Kate Reading did a great job with the chapters narrated by female characters and did a believable job portraying male characters when necessary. However, for me, Michael Kramer really stole the show. He did an amazing job with both male and female characters, as well as portraying an incredible variety of accents. More than anything else though, his voice was perfect for an epic fantasty novel. Five stars all around!