Who is the Hero of Ages?
To end the Final Empire and restore freedom, Vin killed the Lord Ruler. But as a result, the Deepness–the lethal form of the ubiquitous mists–is back, along with increasingly heavy ashfalls and ever more powerful earthquakes. Humanity appears to be doomed.
Having escaped death at the climax of The Well of Ascension only by becoming a Mistborn himself, Emperor Elend Venture hopes to find clues left behind by the Lord Ruler that will allow him to save the world. Vin is consumed with guilt at having been tricked into releasing the mystic force known as Ruin from the Well. Ruin wants to end the world, and its near omniscience and ability to warp reality make stopping it seem impossible. She can’t even discuss it with Elend lest Ruin learn their plans!
“Somehow, we’ll find it. The balance between whom we wish to be and whom we need to be. But for now, we simply have to be satisfied with who we are.”
This is one of those series that, while you know it has to end, you don’t want it to. You know this is the last in the trilogy, and you know it is going to have to be damn good to live up to your expectations and desires, as well as end satisfactorily.
I can happily say that this book ends the trilogy perfectly.
Sanderson sure knows how to end a series! After the events of The Final Empire and The Well of Ascension, I came in prepared for absolutely anything. Those two managed to trick me each time. The Hero of Ages does the same. Even though I was prepared. I was looking at everything side-eyed, hoping to catch it in the act. Yet it still managed to get me.
The book starts off a bit slow. Okay, a lot slow. My two points off are actually because I got to about halfway through the book and I really wanted it to get where it was going. A lot of things kept happening. They were all connected to each other. They all were important. It just took forever to get out of the “beginning” of the book.
The biggest strength this book had was how it dealt with the gods. The (sort of) omnipotent, (mostly) omnipresent, (sort of) omniscient gods. This super powerful god, who is able to change the world to fit his whims, against essentially two magical (Mistborn) humans, their armies, and enemies. The tapestry Sanderson weaves, starting in the first book, to get to the end of this book is nothing short of genius. You honestly cannot describe the twists and turns that go on in this book to someone else who hasn’t read it, without giving up and just handing them the series. You could just never do it justice.
The characters go through a lot in this book. They have already been through a lot. This book just pulls the emotional scab off all of that and lets it ooze and fester the whole book. So many things are happening to our protagonists that there is no downtime to think, to breathe. It is hard to take in just what they are going through, the stresses they are having to endure, the ways they are hurting their bodies through Allomancy just to keep going.
There are a few ideas that this book is built upon. Hope, that everything will turn out okay. Hope, that they can save the world. Hope, that they can defeat a god. Faith in each other. Faith that they can do what they set out to do. Faith in faith itself. Trust in each other that what they are doing is right in the face of a god who can change words. These ideas prop up the book the entire way, holding it together when the entire world is ending. The very human ideas of hope, faith, and trust are a perfect way to hold the fabric of this world together.
This, fortunately, is a very satisfactory ending to the Mistborn world. If, for some reason I utterly cannot imagine, you do not want to continue with this series, you don’t have to after this point. However, there are more after it, and more planned. I honestly cannot wait to see what is in store for Scadrial. There is something magical with the way Sanderson wove the magic in this series. The three separate, but connected magic systems. The fact that he tells us so much information at times about them that it is leaking out of your ears. Yet, right as he is wrapping up the series, he drops the hints that there is more to learn. There is more we don’t know yet. How? I don’t know but it is amazing and I love it.
There are so many things I wish I could talk about, that are spoilers. This was such a good end. Better than I could have dreamed for. But also, a bit expected, too. I was more surprised by the lead up to the ending, than the actual ending. It is just what feels right, there is really no other option.
I just feel drained after this. Emotionally. Physically. Mentally. Just…tired.