Be it a thousand-page installment of a 10,000 page epic or a hundred page novella centered on the introduction of a second magic system to an already-existing world, Brandon Sanderson writes better fantasy than anybody else going. The Emperor’s Soul, the 2013 Hugo Award winner for Best Novella, takes on the second of these tasks and through a simple, well-plotted structure and a dynamite conclusion that makes superb use of the newly-introduced Cosmere system of Forging, becomes as deep and engaging a contribution to Sanderson’s universe as any of the other 8 far-lengthier volumes of the series.
In the end, this novella does all of the impressive things that any of Sanderson’s novels do, at a length far more modest. We get a look at another fascinating and well-applied system of magic that absolutely MUST make another appearance, either in a sequel volume to this one or a book that merges these two aspects of Sel. Regardless, The Emperor’s Soul is another remarkable, memorable, distinct, and high-quality contribution to his Cosmere and another warrant to the argument that Sanderson is the best writer of fantasy to come along in decades.
Read the rest of Vandal’s review at The Undending Backlog.
For more on The Emperor’s Soul, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover art © 2009 by Alexander Nanitchkov. Design by Elizabeth Story.