I may only just beginning my Sanderson deep dive but even I know talking about how great he is at the magic is not exactly a hot take. But despite some trepidation about this book I was intrigued by the magic mystery more than enough to forgive its flaws.
Elantris was a beautiful city filled with near immortal God like creatures who supported the smaller cities around it. 10 years prior to the start of this book the magic that sustains it fails spectacularly causing the people of Elantris to die and the city to all but fall apart.
Now it’s filled with people infected with a mysterious disease that turns them nearly into zombies.
Princess Sarene is on her way to one of the other cities to marry a Prince. Unlike a lot of these situations she’s actually happy and hopeful that they’ll be a good match and she’ll finally find love. Unfortunately he “dies” and she’s considered his widow even before the wedding.
We find out right away he’s not really dead but cursed and tossed into the hopeless city where he must find a way to survive.
There’s a lot of politics in this book and it was interesting. I came into this knowing a lot of people think it’s one of Sanderson’s weakest and I can see the point. The pacing is a bit off and the characters don’t really change all that much. Plus Sarene- on the one hand I love her but on the other boy she was an annoying lucky, lucky woman.
But we also get some severe religious fanaticism influencing the political future and for some reason I’m a sucker for religious fanatics in books.
The real drawing point of Elantris however was the Prince’s search for why the magic had failed, what it means and whether or not it could ever, ever be healed. Especially before the rest of the world falls. So while we take a while to get to the end it is however a rather good bit of action.
So while Elantris wasn’t perfect it was intriguing and entertaining. I couldn’t help think it would make a great show and I found it to be a relatively fast and easy read so I’m glad for once I decided to start at the beginning… well if you don’t count Warbreaker because I’ve already read that one.