The Bands of Mourning was my least favorite installment of The Mistborn series, and by that I am deeply saddened, but mostly just disappointed.
If you haven't read previous Mitsborn books (especially the second era ones) this review will probably not make any sense for you, as I will be talking about specifics.
“I’m wondering if every person I pass has similar depths, and if there’s any way to avoid the mistake of judging them so shallowly that I’m rocked when they show their true complexity.”
I can sum up my disappointment in this book with a list (that's Steris in me):
- Wayne completely degrading as a character
- Steris - is a wasted potential
- Not enough plot progression
- Too many unanswered questions
- Quite boring at times
- Where the hell was TenSoon??
I will start with Wayne. When I started The Alloy of Law, which is the first book in Mistborn era 2, I adored Wayne and Wax's dynamic. They were clever, funny and ridiculous in the best of ways. In The Shadows os Self Wayne took a back seat for a while and just wasn't as good, but in Bands of Mourning I'm pretty sure he just lost all of his bonkers. His POV felt like one of a drunk, incoherent blubbering child that had no purpose. It was quite pitiful. He did have some good lines here and there, but for the most part his character was ruined for me.
I was hoping that this book would bring out Steris' character to light, as Sanderson does in many of his books (taking a secondary character and giving them the page time they deserve in the next book). No such luck here. Steris was the biggest waste of potential I've ever seen in character development. "Steris go stay with the horses", "Steris wait here with out things", "Steris go stand over there"...
Sure, she herself thought herself almost completely useless to their party as well, but that doesn't make it okay.
in the end she needed making some important trading choices for them ,but it wasn't nearly enough to redeem the treatment her character got through the whole of the series. Despite all of that - she was still my favorite.
The Bands of Mourning felt a lot like a filler book. Things were happening but they weren't going anywhere, plot wise. To be specific, I think that the three books altogether were very disconnected in the first place. The Alloy of Law was about Miles Hundredlives, mostly. The Shadows of Self was about Paalm and who she really was and now The Bands of Mourning was supposedly about the Set, even though we learned almost nothing about them when the book was over.
I know there's supposed to be one more book and maybe that will tie things up and explain some plot holes, but it seems silly to me to make this a four book series, while the first one was nicely wrapped up and done in just three (much larger three, but still).
The Shadows of Self mentioned Trell, but by the end of the Bands of Mourning we didn't know anymore of him than we already did. Same with the Set. And where was TenSoon in all of this? Sitting in a cave? Brooding over everything he's done to Wax, I mean sure, but you know how useful he could have been in this book? And don't get me started with that ending. One sentence!! That's all we got about you know who, and you know what that just made me mad.
I will still read the next one, whenever the comes out, and I also think that I should read The Secret History, maybe some of my questions will be answered there. But for now, I'm just disappointed and I didn't think I could ever be, in Sanderson.
Freelance BETA reader.