**Notice** Due to transfering back from a godaddy hosted wordpress blog back to blogger, reviews published before june 2017 don`t all have a pretty layout with book cover and infos. Our apologies.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Rithmatist by Brandon Sanderson

In The Rithmatist, Brandon Sanderson takes us to a time and place that might have been.  In this telling, the United States of America has become the United Isles of America.  The reason for them being islands isn't immediately clear in this, the first book of the series.  North America seems to be broken up differently and the influences Europe had over the development of some areas is markedly different.  With that, the more striking difference between their reality and ours is the rithmatists.  They are able to use geometric shapes  and lines to influence the world around them and to create two dimensional constructs to do handle minor tasks.  Rithmatists are selected at 8 years old and trained to use rithmatics.  A large part of their training seems to be combat related.

The main character, Joel, is a young man who is very knowledgeable in the was of rithmatics.  He does not, however, have the ability to use rithmatics.    To make matters worse for Joel, he goes to a top rated school full kids of some of the wealthiest and most influential families.  I like the character and his humble approach.  Often we're given these characters with a chip on their shoulder but, not this time, not really.  I also like the character of his classmate Melody.  She sometimes comes off as a little bipolar at times but, there a certain honesty to her character.  The rest of the characters often don't measure up to these two.  Some characters a little light in development and a few are almost caricatures of the role they play in the story.  I was a little surprise to see that in a Sanderson book.  Most of his principle characters have sufficient depth to them.  He didn't always hit the mark in this book.

The story itself is strong and the world in which it occurs is intriguing.  I like steampunk used in real world design as well as in story settings.  Brandon Sanderson has managed to use it here in a way that isn't over the top but, still get that style-sense across.   The book uses some well known tropes throughout.  Some seemed a little too familiar to me.  I still stay true to my there's nothing new under the sun attitude but, I believe authors should be very careful not to get too close other literary properties when courting the same type readers.  I'll just say that a few times when the word "rithmatic" showed up the word "arithmancy" echoed in my head.

This is a very interesting read.  For teens, it shows promise to be an excellent series for them to follow.  The world and magic system Brandon Sanderson has built with this one is still a bit incomplete at this point but, there is great potential there.  There is some mild violence and no sexual content so, I give  this a PG rating for sure.  I'll be watching for the next in this series in the future!

Roberts Signature


Tynga is a 32 years old mom of two, from Montreal, working as a lab technician in an hospital specialized in heart disease. In her free time, she enjoys reading all things Paranormal and photography.

Follow Tynga on: Facebook | Twitter

4 People left their mark' :

  1. Sounds good Robert, I will try it if I find the book somewhere :)

  2. [* WordPress Simple Firewall plugin marked this comment as "pending" because: Human SPAM filter found "||" in "comment_content". *]
    It's great that the main character doesn't have a chip on his shoulders! This one looks really amazing and I can't wait to read my first Sanderson book, Steelheart, which I just bought yesterday! Great review!
    Kim @ Divergent Gryffindor: BLOG || VLOG

  3. Thanks, Kim. I, too, like the main character in this book. Sometimes teen boys are written with a bit too much angst.
    I love the Reckoners Series so far (Steelheart, Mitosis and Firefight). I hope you enjoy it as well!

  4. This book was being distributed at BEA. Couldn't get my hands on it. After reading a sample, I had to buy the book. Naturally, I haven't had a chance to read it yet. My reading time has not been productive. I'm glad you enjoyed it, though, and I'll get to it eventually, hopefully before the sequel comes out.