Review: Calamity

Calamity by Brandon Sanderson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Steelheart was the first Sanderson book I ever read, and since then, I’ve been hooked. I consider Sanderson to be my favourite author.

Steelheart was an epic book and the plot twists were so good. However, Calamity does not live up to Steelheart or Firefight for that matter. In the previous two books, the plot twists and the reveals at the end were masterful and you’d be beating yourself over not seeing all the clues earlier. In Calamity, I was scratching my head over the lack of clues. Sad to say, I was disappointed when the big reveal came.

Throughout the book, all the way up till the end, I had more questions than answers. Especially when it came to Calamity, the character. What or who is he? What are his motivations really? Where did he come from or where is he going?

I also consider the whole parallel dimension part of the book to be either underdeveloped or too confusing in its current form. It made for a sweet ending, but again raised too many questions. In fact, it felt a little bit too much of a cop-out.

An added note about cop-outs. Sanderson could have used the protagonist’s sudden gain of Epic powers as a cop-out, but he didn’t. Kudos to him for that.

The ending bits of the story weren’t favourable at all. If you were expecting a mind-blowing ending like the first 2 books of this series, sadly, you’d be disappointed.

However, the rest of the book (which is most of it) is still good and has the consistency of all Sanderson books.

Right from the start, I was hooked on the plot. I wanted to know more and get to the ending. The narrative is inherently exciting too. ‘Magic’ system still works well here too.

The characters, whom you’ve been introduced to previously, are all back. Their characterisation is still consistent and character growth is strong with a dose of healthy self-doubt. If you liked the characters previously, they don’t disappoint here. I have to say though, I never really liked the running gag about the protagonist not being able to make metaphors. Wasn’t funny for me.

Well. You’ve come so far as to read the first 2 books, you will want to read the 3rd book whether I recommend it or not.

As a series, I will highly recommend it to anyone who loves sci-fi or mystery novels.

Story/Plot (50%): 3/5
Character Development (25%): 4/5
Writing style (25%): 4/5

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