Review #20 // Warbreaker (Warbreaker #1) – Brandon Sanderson


Taking her older sister’s place, Siri marries the God King of the kingdom that threatens to destroy her own. Her only ally is a god that doesn’t believe in his divinity in her quest to stop the war against her family-and save the husband that was supposed to be her captor?

Why this book?: I’m not satisfied with my experience of Brandon Sanderson, especially after the disappointment of Steelheart. (Read my review here!) So, I figured I should try another one-this time, full on fantasy, and not a YA dystopia.

Never-ending, captivating world-building

I was blown away with how much care and detail went into this book. It was obvious that the author knew that he had to go far back for everything to be understood, but instead of just dumping it on us in a chapter, he stretched it out. There were a few places where large chunks would be told, but it was written in a way that it was necessary for the character to know all of it, and not be annoying. I actually got to the point where I was like “More, More, More!!” because the world in Warbreaker was so damn entrancing.

Everything was intricately placed. Little hints in the beginning of the book would come back and slap you in the face at the end. Seemingly innocent additions end up being super important.

The magic system in the book, Breaths, were also amazing. Basically, color is magic, and you can collect more breaths and become stronger and colors and sounds would be more in-depth. You can awaken objects (with limitations, of course), and give them commands, and hearing the rules was so interesting. I also enjoyed the fact that using Breaths and Awakening was something they still didn’t completely understand, so we knew about as much as the characters did.

Gradual character development with a pinch of irony

Of all the characters, I didn’t hate a single one. Sure, there were characters that were assholes and some that were just plain boring, but they still had depth. I saw Siri as a believable character-she didn’t think highly of herself and in fact she ended up hating herself multiple times in the book. But she never gave up. She found reason to do what she had to do, and damn did she do it well.

Despite there being quite a few characters, a lot of them either had severe character changes or developments, which I didn’t even notice until the end. You don’t notice the character acting different-it just happens. It’s only when you think back as to how they were before that you notice.

There were also loads of twists that you’ll never see coming. A lot of them were fairly brutal, and because of that, mainly, I had to take this book in small chunks. I couldn’t handle all of it at once. My brain was completely involved when I picked up this book, and I never wanted to put it down once I did so. Other books were hard to read in between reading this book, but I couldn’t make myself go back to it because it was such a heavy read. I could only read this book when I knew that I would have time to read a large chunk.

Final Rating: ★★★★★


The world-building, the magic system, the characters, the plot, I loved all of it. The twists had me crying, a *certain* character had me cackling, and another had me so involved in intrigue that I hated whenever a new chapter came up. This is one of my new favorite books, I can tell you that.

Would I Recommend?

If you are a fan of high fantasy, read this book. I wouldn’t read it unless you’re a fan of books like A Song of Ice and Fire, The Farseer Trilogy, or Gentleman Bastard. It’s a really heavy book as well, so if you’re not ready to take your time with this one, come back to it another time. Otherwise, DIG IN!

6976882Additional Information

Published: June 9th, 2009

Publisher: Tor Fantasy

Page Count: 676

Genre: (High/Epic) Fantasy

Synopsis: via Goodreads

Warbreaker is the story of two sisters, who happen to be princesses, the God King one of them has to marry, the lesser god who doesn’t like his job, and the immortal who’s still trying to undo the mistakes he made hundreds of years ago.

Their world is one in which those who die in glory return as gods to live confined to a pantheon in Hallandren’s capital city and where a power known as BioChromatic magic is based on an essence known as breath that can only be collected one unit at a time from individual people.

By using breath and drawing upon the color in everyday objects, all manner of miracles and mischief can be accomplished. It will take considerable quantities of each to resolve all the challenges facing Vivenna and Siri, princesses of Idris; Susebron the God King; Lightsong, reluctant god of bravery, and mysterious Vasher, the Warbreaker.

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