books

Brandon Sanderson

Books

Legion: Legion (2012), Legion: Skin Deep (2014)

Anthologies: Dangerous Women (2013)

 

 

Legion

 

Legion (2012)

legionImportant note: this is a novella. I love novellas and short stories, but some people don’t, so there’s your heads up.

Stephen Leeds has multiple aspects–full fledged personalities that he sees as distinct individuals, yet knows are hallucinations. These hallucinations allow him to solve mysteries and conundrums and have made him very rich and very famous, but also very very tired of being studied and examined.

“Well, true. They’re my hallucinations. But Stan is something special. Only Tobias hears him. Tobias is a schizophrenic.”
She blinked in surprise. “Your hallucination . . .”
“Yes?”
“Your hallucination has hallucinations.”

It’s a complicated idea, and it is very very well done. I adore the idea that someone might have hallucinations, know they are hallucinations, and be able to put them to use.

“No offense intended, Monica, but you’re a sneaky corporate type. Ivy and J.C. figured out ages ago that you’re not an engineer. You’re either a slimy executive tasked with handling undesirable elements, or you’re a slimy security forces leader who does the same.”
“What part of that am I not supposed to take offense at?” she asked coolly.

Utterly marvelous.
Rating: 8.5/10

Published by Dragonsteel Entertainment, LLC

Audible version read by Oliver Wyman

(settling in for a drive and figuring out what to listen to)
Michelle: Did you read Legion yet?
Michael (sounding uninterested): Nah.
Michelle: That is what we’re listening to then.
(time passes)
(we get out of the car and when we get back in I switch to the news since it’s 5pm)
Michael: Aren’t we gonna keep listening to the book?
Rating: 8.5/10

Published by Audible

Legion: Skin Deep (2014)

Legion-Skin-Deep copyThis is the second story about Stephen Leeds, and it’s just as delightful as the first.

Stephen is insane, but in an extremely useful way.

He is a genius, and to use his genius he manifests different aspects who are experts on whatever he is researching. But he is well-aware that only he can see these aspects and that they are a form of insanity.

At this point, he has manifest enough aspects that he has to be careful when working with them, lest they overwhelm him. Because they all have distinct personas.

“She’s a looker, Skinny. Nice work!”
“Half of her is plastic,” Ivy said dryly.
“Same goes for my car,” J.C. said. “It still looks nice.”

It is an utterly fascinating concept, and one that is done extremely well in these novellas.

“Rule number one of decryption,” Audrey said. “If you don’t have to break the code, don’t. People are usually far less secure than the encryption strategies they employ.”

I enjoy the first story, was relieves to like this one just as much. I high;y recommend it.
Rating: 9/10

Published by

 

Anthologies

 

Dangerous Women (2013) edited by George R.R. Martin and Gardner Dozois

Dangerous-Women“Some Desperado” (Red Country story) by Joe Abercrombie
“My Heart is Either Broken” by Megan Abbott
“Nora’s Song” by Cecelia Holland
“The Hands That Are Not There” by Melinda Snodgrass
“Bombshells” (Harry Dresden story) by Jim Butcher
“Raisa Stepanova” by Carrie Vaughn
“Wrestling Jesus” by Joe R. Lansdale
“Neighbors” by Megan Lindholm
“I Know How to Pick ’Em” by Lawrence Block
“Shadows For Silence in the Forests of Hell” by Brandon Sanderson
“A Queen in Exile” by Sharon Kay Penman
“The Girl in the Mirror” (Magicians story) by Lev Grossman
“Second Arabesque, Very Slowly” by Nancy Kress
“City Lazarus” by Diana Rowland
“Virgins” (Outlander story) by Diana Gabaldon
“Hell Hath No Fury” by Sherilynn Kenyon
“Pronouncing Doom” (Emberverse story) by S.M. Stirling
“Name the Beast” by Sam Sykes
“Caretakers” by Pat Cadigan
“Lies My Mother Told Me” (Wild Cards story) by Caroline Spector
“The Princess and the Queen” (A Song of Ice and Fire story) by George R.R. Martin

There are a lot of different stories here–on purpose.

Dangerous Women was conceived of as a cross-genre anthology, one that would mingle every kind of fiction, so we asked writers from every genre— science fiction, fantasy, mystery, historical, horror, paranormal romance, men and women alike— to tackle the theme of “dangerous women,”

Thus I was fully expecting there to be a number of stories I wouldn’t particularly like, or would even skip. And there were. Unfortunately for me, the dislikes were higher in number than the likes, and there were several dystopias, which I really dislike. And a lot of the women were in the neutral to evil category of dangerous. Which is fine, but all that dark got a bit overwhelming, which is why I took several months for me to finish this anthology.

...

“Shadows For Silence in the Forests of Hell” by Brandon Sanderson was straight up fantasy, and took a bit to get into, but I ended up liking it. It’s about a woman who does what she needs to survive and protect her daughter. I quite liked Silence.

...

All in all, there were more stories I disliked than liked, which sometimes happens. As this covers all diffeerent genres, you’re likely to find at least one story you like, you’ll just have to decide if it’s worth the price.
Rating: 5.5/10

Published by Tor Books