The Bands of Mourning (Mistborn #6) by Brandon Sanderson, Published by Tor, Purchased for my own Collection.
I’ve heard a lot of people saying that Bands of Mourning has been their favorite Mistborn Era II book so far. I’m not sure if it was that for me, but it was certainly the most entertaining and definitely the most game changing. I felt like the main group of characters really hit their stride in this book, and there were so many HILARIOUS moments. I was cracking up while reading this quite a few times, up to and past the points where I was in total shock due to astonishing developments and / or pure amazingness.
The plot was a tiny bit confusing to me in this one. It wasn’t that I totally couldn’t follow it or anything, but there were times where I was thinking, “This is great and all but where’s the plot?” and times where the information was moving so fast that I could barely keep up. There were also tiny details I would miss, be briefly confused by, and then move on with. Never the less, I thoroughly enjoyed the whole thing and the story that all the parts coalesced to create was pretty mind blowing.
“There’s always another perspective, if you look hard enough” 245
That is pretty much all I can say without melting into a ridiculous mess of ALL CAPS and spoilers. Seriously, so many spoilers. If you’ve read all the Mistborn books to date, fell free to keep scrolling so we can scream together about all these new developments. If you haven’t, well… You should really get on that.
Super Spoiler Discussion Section Ahead! (You’ve Been Warned)
This book was WILD. The Wax & Wayne series has always been more fun for me than the original trilogy because Wax & Wayne is hilarity and fast fights and crazy banter while the original trilogy (which I love love LOVE too but in a different way) is all doom and destruction and “AHH THE WORLD IS ENDING.” Shadows of Self started to bring in more of the world-being-at-stake stuff but Bands of Mourning really brought it all in and made things crazy, mashing all the best aspects together to make something that was great but also felt a lot different at times. While it still had my beloved Era II characters, this third book was an entirely new beast compared to the first two.
Basically, Parts One and Two of this book were all “Could this be any more hilarious and adorable and clever?” and then Part Three was just “EVERYTHING I THOUGHT I KNEW WAS A LIE!” I’m pretty sure I started freaking out the moment Allik started talking and kept freaking out until the last sentence of that epilogue. 😱 😱
But, hold up. Let’s backtrack a little bit.
The group dynamic of these characters came into itself in this book and it worked SO WELL. They all understood each other, and worked so well together, and really balanced each other out, with Wayne and Marasi outwitting each other, and Steris’s backup plans, and Wax’s leadership… It was perfect. Then again, as we saw in the (total hilarious) scene where they’re all freaking out the hotel manager, put all five of them in a room together and they can be an absolute MENACE to anyone else nearby.
After finding Steris ridiculous and kind of annoying in Alloy of Law, the events of Shadows of Self led me to start liking her. Bands of Mourning made me love her. Steris and Marasi both really shined in Bands. (More on Mara later) Near the end, when Steris was talking about how useless she was to the mission as a whole I was just like, “Psssssh no girl you saved their asses like twenty times.” It was pretty amazing how she made her lists and was able to predict and prepare for pretty much everything. Steris was great.
I also started shipping Wax and Steris a lot. There were so many fantastic moments between those two. Them searching through the finance records, (and Wax getting super competitive with it) Wax flying them up above the mists… Actually it was pretty adorable just how much Steris liked it when he flew them around.
Speaking of ships: Wayne and MeLaan. I’d like to say I totally didn’t expect it, but I actually kind of saw it coming. Though, near the beginning of the book I kind of thought it was setting up for Marasi/Wayne and I’m very glad that didn’t happen. Wayne and MeLaan were already such bros (the whole accents thing yes) so I guess I kind of ship it. I don’t really have strong feeling either way? They do make a really hilarious pair either way.
Then we had the ball scene which was really great, with Steris pulling some totally surprising stunts and being in her element, (though I’m a little disappointed that Wax and Steris never got to dancing together) and the scene where Wayne and Marasi went to search the graveyard, which was equally fantastic. (Mara tricking Wayne into given back his stolen goods by putting out something he’d rather “trade” for was GENIUS) Super big turning point where Wax is framed for murder. Finally, we get to the warehouse and the ship.
The ship was SO COOL. When they were talking about how it was odd I was thinking “could it be a flying ship…?” and it was and my life was made. FLYING SHIP. It was so cool how it worked on feruchemy and allomancy! Not to mention there are OTHER PEOPLE. That’s… really, really big. I wonder sometimes if Sanderson will ever not manage to totally shock me with his plot twists but he always comes through.
I kind of knew that Telsin wasn’t going to be on their side. I didn’t want to, because how much can Wax take? but the spunky, spirited, rebellious Telsin we met in the prologue… She wouldn’t have just been waiting around for someone to rescue her. I was a little surprised that she was actually higher up in the Set than Suit though. That is… certainly interesting.
MARASI WITH THE BANDS OF MOURNING. WAXILLIUM WITH THE BANDS OF MOURNING. Honestly, those scenes were some of the most amazing. I also was so happy about all the character development that happened around them. Marasi has really found her place (and her peace) now and that is so great. (also, she’s totally right. purses are so useful) Plus the way they kind of shared a moment about the power in the Bands… I like how their friendship has moved so far beyond the whole “I used to be obsessed with you” awkwardness and has grown into something where they can share witty banter and things like that.
Wax DIED. Wax DIED and CAME BACK TO LIFE. I was shocked by a lot of things in this book, but that was something I was entirely blindsided by. I was kind of expecting some major character death going into this book (which actually didn’t end up happening in the end?) but I never expected it to be Wax. I love Wax. I loooove Waxillium. Currently he’s one of my very, very favorite fictional characters.
(and if I’m entirely honest with myself I have a huge crush on him too) He’s so analytical and smart and has gone through so much. He’s amazing but he also just really needs a hug. When he was paralyzed and I thought he was actually going to die (okay he did but also… you know) I was kind of losing it. Wax couldn’t die, but… I wouldn’t really put it past Sanderson. Thank goodness he survived is all I’m saying.
Also, what Wayne did when he though Wax was dead. That just physically pains me… That whole scene around Wax’s death, with all the characters in various states of hopelessness and them all finding ways to pull through and win. So much sadness and so much joy. That whole climax was so perfect.
Right when I thought my world could be changed no more… That epilogue comes along and totally shakes everything up. Is it the Lord Ruler? Is it… Kelsier?!? (I do not dare to hope on that one) How would they have lived? That whole part is something I could theorize about for hours, and go a little bit out of my mind over, so I shall endeavor to leave it be and will instead leave you with what was probably my favorite quote from this volume: (it’s sappy I know, but sister advice ftw)
“Love is always a foolish emotion. That’s what makes it work.” 357