BOOK REVIEW: Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson

Steelheart (Reckoners, #1)Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson
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.(Goodreads Summary)


My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Although Brandon Sanderson is a prolific writer, I’ve only read two of his books. The first one turned me into a fan of his story-telling, and the second one made me fall in love with his character development and world building. Just two books and he instantly turned into one of my favorite authors.

Steelheart was the third book and I was excited to inhale another Brandon Sanderson world. It started out very promising. It had a good backstory and an exciting premise, but there were so many disappointments.

First, the really bad similes. Or, the really bad effort to make bad similes. I wasn’t sure if they were supposed to make David more human but it didn’t work for me.

“It’s like…a banana farm for guns.”

Second, the romance. It was just too fairy tale-y for me. I support Cinderella, Snow White, and Happily Ever Afters but this isn’t a fairy tale. I hoped there were more layers and less cliché.

Third, the heroine. I appreciate that she’s independent and reliable, but I just wish she had more heart to go with all those muscles. That way, David’s puppy love for her would have felt less superficial.

Fourth, the predictable story line. I wanted to be surprised and I was – but in a bad way. I was shocked that almost everything was so predictable. I didn’t even get the chance to feel excited.

Then the ending happened. A twist. A wonderful surprise. That part when David finally came face to face with the Epic who became his entire existence was like reading the first chapter again when I was excited and filled with wonder. I wish the ending was the whole story because I believe that the magic I found in the first two Brandon Sanderson books I read was in that scene.

“His cheek bore a tiny sliver of a scar. The only imperfection on his body. A gift from a man who had believed him. A gift from a better man than Steelheart would ever be, or ever understand.”

I wanted to love this book so badly, that I hate feeling disappointed. I’m not excited to read the second book but I LOVE Brandon Sanderson and here’s me hoping that the next one I’ll read from him will be another wonderful treat like The Rithmatist and Mistborn.

View all my reviews

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5 thoughts on “BOOK REVIEW: Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson

    • Hi! Thanks for dropping by. I read Mistborn before I read this, and that set a really high bar, I guess. Since I gave Steelheart three stars, I might have liked it better too if this had been my first Brandon Sanderson, What other books of his did you read after? And which do you like best? 🙂

      • I haven’t read the books in his Stormlight Archive because I’ve seen the summary before, and the plot and setting sounded like the Mistborn books. Are there any similarities? And what did you like about them?

      • There are some of the hallmark similarities of a book written by the same author between the two, but other than that they are very different.

        The plot is entirely different. There is no government the characters in Stormlight are trying to overthrow. One of the main characters is even royalty. Their are so many characters doing seemingly unrelated things that the plot is hard to describe without spoiling everything.

        It’s slower paced than Mistborn though and much longer. I’ve known some people who really struggle to finish because of the length.

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