Feb 7, 2016

Book Review: Steelheart - Brandon Sanderson

Title: Steelheart (Reckoners #1)
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Release Date: September 24th 2013
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: Bought
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.
Steelheart went straight to my TBR list the minute I read its synopsis. I mean, a mystical orb appears in the sky and suddenly ordinary humans gain superpowers? Sold. I held off on reading it, though, because I'm not the biggest fan of its original cover. Thank heavens for UK editions. Also, I can finally say that I've read a Brandon Sanderson book! (And I sure plan on reading more *heart eyes*)

This stellar book grabs from page one and thrusts its reader straight into the action, and we learn right from the start that there are no superheroes in this story, only supervillains, and that is how it tells us that one does not need superpowers to be a hero, only the courage and heart to be one.
Did the Epics kill because Calamity chose - for whatever reason - only terrible people to gain powers? Or did they kill because such amazing power twisted a person, made them irresponsible?
Aside from David, our bright and talented main character with a thirst for vengeance, the story is kept interesting by the Reckoners, the group of humans dedicated to killing Epics. At first they are reluctant about trusting the newbie, thinking he's lying about seeing Steelheart - one of the most powerful Epics in the world, and certainly the most powerful one in town - bleed, but he soon proves his worth by being a useful member of the team.
Who had time for morals in a world like this?
Reading Steelheart is such a thrill, like sneaking out or riding a motorcycle (not that I've ever ridden one but I imagine that's how it would feel like). But aside from the car chases and explosions, it also doesn't fail to develop the characters and move them forward, especially with David as he realizes that his life should not be consumed by his wanting to kill Steelheart and avenge his father. 
All of these guns, they do not frighten him. They won't be what overthrows him. It will be the person clever enough, smart enough, to figure out the chink in his armor.
Set in a post-apocalyptic world that only lends an added oomph to the story, Steelheart is full of crazy action and even crazier, unexpected twists that will leave its readers breathless and desperate for more. I also enjoyed how the Epics themselves fought against each other in their quest to be the most powerful one around. The ending answered questions while asking some more, and because of that I'm thankful that I waited years before reading this because now I only have to wait months for the next books in the series!


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