The Rithmatist, by Brandon Sanderson
[Image courtesy of Amazon.com]
After the last two disappointments, this book was like a life-saver.
Reading this book, I felt transported back to the same zone I was in when I started on the first few Harry Potter books many years ago. A school that trained young people to become rithmatists so that they could serve in the “army” that fought off the wild chalklings (think Hogwarts). A boy protagonist who lost his father to an “accident”, who yearned to become a rithmatist, and who had the knowledge but lacked the “power” (not exactly Harry Potter but similar enough). A budding love interest who flunked the basic rithmatics but had a unique talent (think Hermione, minus the A-plus student quality). A professor who was arrogant, aloof and shady (think Snape). You get the idea.
What wowed me was not just the fast-paced and page-turning style typical of a Brandon Sanderson book, but the numerous twists at the end. Plus, the logic and strategies behind the chalk-drawing battles just raised my awe-level for Sanderson and his ability to create novel magical systems.
I can’t wait to read the sequel, and Sanderson just wrote on his website last December that it will be here “soooooon”. I hope it’s really soon.
VERDICT: This is one book that fans of Harry Potter, and more importantly, fans of Sanderson, shouldn’t miss.