Legion (Legion #1)
Skin Deep (Legion #2)
Lies of the Beholder (Legion #3)
By: THE Brandon Sanderson
My Rating: FIVE out of FIVE Stars
Best for: 14 and up
Legion: The Many Lives of Stephen Leeds, is a compilation of the three novellas about Brandon Sanderson’s schizophrenic private investigator, Stephen Leeds.
My opinion? The Legion stories are the most unique and creative applications of Brandon Sanderson’s famous magic systems. I love these stories, they are a creative masterpiece, and I wish there were more. They would make an AMAZING TV series.
The third and final story is the only new one. The first two have been published previously. My reviews of those are below, followed by some short thoughts on part 3, Lies of the Beholder.
Here we go.
Book 1: Legion (Reviewed March 2013)
Stephen might be the smartest person alive. He is fabulously wealthy because his brilliance is in high demand–he can solve crimes and mysteries better than anyone. Steve is also crazy . . .
He doesn’t like being smart, so he’s invented “aspects,” hallucinations that represent a different part of his brilliance. He converses with them and they help him solve mysteries–but of course he’s the only one who can see them. It’s like imaginary friends gone wild! He travels first class, but demands that he have 5 first class tickets. He orders his butler to bring drinks for him and all his “friends.” His hallucinations even fall in love with each other . . .
Seriously? Why hasn’t this story been turned into the coolest mystery solving TV series yet?
Book 2: Skin Deep (Reviewed November 2014)
When is this going to be turned into a TV series? It’d be a hit!
Stephen Leeds is a genius for hire. He leads a team of experts–currently 47 of them–in solving mysteries and puzzles.
Stephen Leeds is also a conscious psychotic, somewhere between schizophrenic and something not yet defined. Conscious, because he is fully aware of what is real and what is not. Psychotic, because his team of 47 experts doesn’t actually exist–at least not to anyone but Stephen. He calls them his “aspects;” they are manifestations of his own compartmentalized knowledge that are visible only to him.
Oh man, get ready: this guy is completely fascinating…each aspect is it’s own character, complete with personality, feelings, backstory, emotions, relationships, and motivations–all taking place in the mind of Stephen Leeds. They are different sexes and races. They have romantic relationships with each other, fight with each other, and get annoyed with each other. When they all get together to help Stephen solve a puzzle, the entertainment value is sky high, especially when others are there to witness it!
Book 3: Lies of the Beholder
This is the last Stephen Leeds story we’re going to get, and I’m sad about that. It’s just that good. But, Brandon Sanderson wanted to put this one to bed and move on to other things, so he did, he did it brilliantly, and I can respect that.
I love the creativity represented in these stories. It’s a complex idea executed flawlessly, and that’s part of why I’m so enamored by them. It ends with a fantastic twist and a wonderful tip-of-the-hat to every author who bravely sends their word-children into the world to be judged.
Good bye Stephen Leeds. I hope to see you on the small screen one day.
14 and up.