Rhythm of War (The Stormlight Archives, Book 4)
By: Brandon Sanderson
My Rating: FIVE OUT OF FIVE STARS!
Best For: 16 and up
Over 1200 pages, and I still want more!
Rhythm of War, book 4 in The Stormlight Archive, was my most anticipated new release of 2020, and wondered how it could possibly top its predecessor, Oathbringer.
Obviously, I shouldn’t have worried. This is Brandon Sanderson we’re talking about. Rhythm of War delivered the big moments I was hoping for, bigger character moments I wasn’t expecting, and BROKE MY BRAIN with more Cosmere lore than I even knew I needed.
Brandon Sanderson is the king of the climax. His big moments are the biggest you’ll read–anywhere. How big are they? So big, his fans gave them a name: Sanderlanche.
THEY. ARE. HUGE!
I’m not talking about an exciting chapter towards the end of the book. I’m talking a 900 page build up of anticipation, follow by a 200-page, heart stopping, white-knuckled, shout-out-loud, fist pumping, stand-up-and-cheer SANDERLANCHE!
Did Rhythm of War deliver on it’s Sanderlanche? Oh my word. My heart’s starting to race while I’m thinking about it right now–and I read the last page over 72 hours ago!
Now, like I tell everyone, you can’t have a supreme high without an equal low. The Rhythm of War lows were rough, and I didn’t expect to be emotionally drained at the end, but I was. The character arcs in Rhythm of War are tremendous. There are no stereotypes here. I appreciate that Brandon Sanderson has done a great work with this book to destigmatize mental illness, and I’m certain you’ll appreciate it too. These characters are as broken as we are. They suffer from anxiety, depression, PTSD, self doubt, dissociative identity disorder…they are us. They struggle. They don’t necessarily get better, but they deal.
And they become heros.
Now, I did feel like there were some elements that dragged on longer than I would have liked. I wasn’t as enamored with the flashbacks this time around. If I’m being honest, when I got to a flashback chapter I silently hoped to myself that it’d be short so I could get back to the now. And that 900-page build up to the climax? It was full of micro climaxes, but dang–it sure felt like our heroes took a lot of beatings this time around before they finally got to give it back. But, give back they do–big time.
Talk about a Sanderlanche.
And The Cosmere? Well, let’s just say after Rhythm of War, we’re no longer passively looking for Cosmere Easter Eggs hidden in the story. The Cosmere just smacked me in the face–and I LIKED it! Thanks to Rhythm of War, the Cosmere just got a lot smaller.
So did Rhythm of War deliver?
Yep. Like Santa Claus on Christmas morning.
Best for 16 and up because of violence, complexity, and length. No language or sex.