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Elantris

Sanderson, Brandon (Paperback - 2005 )
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Elantris
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Baker & Taylor
Arriving in the kingdom of Arelon to enter a marriage of state, princess Sarene discovers that her intended has died and that she is considered his widow, circumstances that render her a lone force against the imperial ambitions of a religious fanatic. A first novel. 35,000 first printing.

McMillan Palgrave
Elantris was the capital of Arelon: gigantic, beautiful, literally radiant, filled with benevolent beings who used their powerful magical abilities for the benefit of all. Yet each of these demigods was once an ordinary person until touched by the mysterious transforming power of the Shaod. Ten years ago, without warning, the magic failed. Elantrians became wizened, leper-like, powerless creatures, and Elantris itself dark, filthy, and crumbling.

Arelon's new capital, Kae, crouches in the shadow of Elantris. Princess Sarene of Teod arrives for a marriage of state with Crown Prince Raoden, hoping -- based on their correspondence -- to also find love. She finds instead that Raoden has died and she is considered his widow. Both Teod and Arelon are under threat as the last remaining holdouts against the imperial ambitions of the ruthless religious fanatics of Fjordell. So Sarene decides to use her new status to counter the machinations of Hrathen, a Fjordell high priest who has come to Kae to convert Arelon and claim it for his emperor and his god.

But neither Sarene nor Hrathen suspect the truth about Prince Raoden. Stricken by the same curse that ruined Elantris, Raoden was secretly exiled by his father to the dark city. His struggle to help the wretches trapped there begins a series of events that will bring hope to Arelon, and perhaps reveal the secret of Elantris itself.

A rare epic fantasy that doesn't recycle the classics and that is a complete and satisfying story in one volume, Elantris is fleet and fun, full of surprises and characters to care about. It's also the wonderful debut of a welcome new star in the constellation of fantasy.


Blackwell North Amer
Elantris: gigantic, beautiful, literally radiant, filled with benevolent beings who used their powerful magical abilities to benefit all the people of Arelon. Yet each of these godlike beings had been an ordinary person until touched by the mysterious transforming power of the Shaod. Then, ten years ago, without warning, the magic failed. Elantrians became wizened, feeble, leper-like creatures, and Elantris itself dark, filthy, and crumbling. The Shaod became a curse.
Arelon's new capital city, Kae, crouches in the shadow of Elantris, which its people do their best to ignore. Princess Sarene of Teod has come to Kae for a marriage of state with Crown Prince Raoden, hoping - based on their correspondence - also to find love. She finds instead that Raoden has died, and she is considered his widow. Both Teod and Arelon are under threat as the last remaining holdouts against the imperial ambitions of the ruthless religious fanatics of Fjordell. Sarene decides to make the best of a sad situation and use her position to oppose the machinations of Hrathen, a Fjordell high priest who has come to convert Arelon and claim it for his emperor and his god.
But neither Sarene nor Hrathen suspects the truth about Prince Raoden's disappearance. Taken by the same strange malady that struck the fallen gods of Elantris, Raoden was secretly imprisoned within the dark city. His struggle to create a society for the wretches trapped there begins a series of events that will bring hope to Arelon, and perhaps even reveal the secret of Elantris itself.

Baker
& Taylor

Arriving in the kingdom of Arelon to enter a marriage of state, princess Sarene discovers that her intended has died and that she is considered his widow, leaving her a lone force against the imperial ambitions of a religious fanatic.

Authors: Sanderson, Brandon
Statement of Responsibility: Brandon Sanderson
Title: Elantris
Publisher: New York : Tor, c2005
Characteristics: 492 p. : ill., map ; 25 cm.
Notes: "A Tom Doherty Associates book."
Local Note: Published also by Tor Fantasy
LCCN: 2004063765
ISBN: 0765311771
0765350378
Branch Call Number: SCI-FI S
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This is an excellent and unusual standalone fantasy novel by Sanderson. It combines fantasy/,magic with ideas on religion, politics, economics and social issues. I found the ideas thought-provoking while Sanderson maintains a non-pedantic exploration of such issues through his story. The characters were well-formed and very likeable with an immersive fantasy world. The language is evocative and simple enough for most ages to enjoy.

Nov 15, 2013
  • Bryher rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This is absolutely my favorite book of all time! I have recommended it to more people than I could ever count. This book has it all: action, mystery, romance, magic, religion, politics, comedy, and so much more.

It is different from the typical Epic Fantasy in that there really isn't a physical quest to find any talisman or complete any action. Almost the entire story takes place in the area of two cities that are very near each other. At the time I first read this book, I found this bit to be so refreshing.

The magic system is trully unique, and discovering some of its mysteries is a key part of this whole book. Following the progression of the discoveries was absolutely fascinating.

Sarene (the female lead) is an amazing woman. She is courageous, intelligent, and strong of character. She does many amazing things and pushes herself to help others. She's just awesome!

Raoden (one of the male leads) is the perfect man for Sarene. He is also intelligent, courageous, and strong, but he also trully sees people. I find this quality spectacular in people as they can really accomplish things, and they tend to be really good people.

Hrathen (the other male lead) has a strong character as well. His character grows a lot throughout this book, and I really like that he thinks for himself. His side of the story really focuses on religion and his mentality was interesting to learn about.

There is a bit of romance in this book as well (for all the ladies out there!) which really added to everything.

The fact that this is Sanderson's first book, showed his true potential as an amazing writer. I first read this when it was his only book out, and he became my favorite author. I have read everything his has published since then and I have never been dissapointed.

Oct 05, 2013
  • Oddoneout rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Although it does have it's flaws. For what it is - which is a debut novel- it is not bad. Nothing comparable to his later works, The ideas were there and it has some interesting concepts although it does need to be a bit more developed in some areas and less obvious in others it is not that bad. Of course as always, it has a unique system of magic for us to explore.

Sep 04, 2013
  • W_Sugden rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

Not a bad read, though it pales in comparison to Sanderson's later novels. The final act of the book was my least favourite of the three, as it seemed to completely ditch the machinations and maneuvering that characterize the rest of the story and felt too rushed instead of climactic.

Apr 01, 2013
  • forbesrachel rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

The debut novel of what is one of Fantasy's greatest authors. In a race against the clock, Raoden must uncover the mystery of Elantris and its people that disappeared. As it is Sanderson's first work, it is not his best, but it still bears his trademark unique magic.

Feb 12, 2013
  • EKML rated this: 1 stars out of 5.

This is one of the most embarrassingly bad pieces of writing recently published in the writing. I honestly do not understand what the editor was doing or how this landed publication with Tor. The author has a tremendous amount of great ideas but he simply does not know what to do with them: in fact, he does not know how to write. The subplot is hilariously contrived. The writing itself is stacked with adverbs, adjectives and similes. There is not a single paragraph that does not need some form of reworking. Some sentences are shockingly poor. On average, this book has the tone of a slightly confused writing exercise, and I exemplify:

Then, realizing in full what he was holding in his unworthy hand, he dropped the parchment to the desk with a quiet yelp."

I wish the author had been assigned a competent editor who is not afraid of using a read marker because the ideas are there. But the writing? Atrocious.

May 06, 2012
  • timidmagick rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

This book is not part of the hero of ages series. It is a stand alone book as far as I can tell. It's very, very good.

Jan 20, 2012
  • dprodrig rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Well writen, engaging, and includes a couple of plot twists / deceptions that really throw you for a loop inside the obvious conclusion of the book that the girl and the boy will end up together. Was disappointed to realize that this was a stand alone novel. On the other hand, maybe that's a good thing because I read it in less than two days and I really should catch up on my sleep. (:

Jun 07, 2011
  • oldman74 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

this novel is terrific. as sanderson's first novel, he did an amazing job. laced with several sub-plots and a compelling mystery, you will find that the worst part about reading this book is when you have to take a break to eat, work and sleep. every spare moment you can find you will be using to get back to these "glowing, silver-sheened" pages.

if you like robert jordan then you will like this author even better (sanderson is taking over the wheel of time series by the way, now that robert jordan has passed on).

Feb 02, 2011
  • JasonInSeattle rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Engaging single-book fantasy. Three likeable main characters who's stories overlap with each other. A strong feminist argument is made throughout the book. Can't help wondering if some parts of the story are allegorical: a kingdom taken over by merchants and invasion of a militant religious force.

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Jun 27, 2011
  • bookKITTY rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

bookKITTY thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Jan 18, 2010
  • dida rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

dida thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

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