Warbreaker Read Along Part I

Hello everyone. Welcome to the read along of Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson. This read along is the brainchild of those lovely, quick-tongued, and highly entertaining folks over at Once Upon A Time, so make sure to stop by and enjoy their site. They also have the links to all the other participating bloggers.

This is my second time reading this novel in the past year. I enjoyed this book so much the first time through, I read it very fast and missed a lot of the details. So this read along was the perfect excuse to re-read it, and slow down my pace. With that said, I promise not to spoil anything in my answers for first time readers.

1. All right, let’s start easy – how are you liking the book so far? We’ve been introduced to a lot of characters and started several stories now. Any in particular catch your attention? Anything intrigue you?

I have to say the cover drew me in right away. Just gorgeous work.

I remember the first time reading this and finding it a little daunting to grasp the rules of the world right off the bat. Luckily, Sanderson provides plenty of details to help me get on board quickly enough.

The character of Vasher I was intrigued by right away; is he a bad guy? Good Guy? His sword Nightblood often had me inappropriately laughing. Also Denth and Tonk Fah were quite the dry wit comedy duo.

Siri also had my attention right away because she is rebellious (or an independent thinker depending on your point of view). She’s a handful at home and a too curious for the Hallandren crowd.

2. The Returned are all treated as Gods, but at least one of those Gods doesn’t believe in his own divinity, despite seeing potential visions. Do you think the Returned will prove to be divine? How do you feel about the religion built up around them?

I’m going to partially skirt the answer to the first question, since I know how the book ends. Let me bore you with beer talk about divinity. That first glass of fresh, clear, cool water after working in the sun for hours is divine. That first fresh strawberry from my own garden was divine. Of course there are divine acts, which can be simple things of kindness, especially when they go against our base inclinations. Lightsong seems to be in great need of some divinity. His ennui would be irksome if he didn’t have his snide comments and nick names to entertain me.

I see lots of potential for corruption. The Gods can abuse the system and get nearly anything they want (except freedom) and the servants of the Gods control access to them, and hence have a lot of power. I find Lightsong’s questions to Scoot about believing the whole religion very interesting. Lightsong is a God and even he questions the validity of the religion – probably because of the weekly offerings and the near daily petitions that he has to turn down.

3. The God King didn’t turn out to be the way he’s presented and thought of in this world. Any ideas on what his role will be in this story?

The first time I read this, I remember seeing the GK Susebron as a mystery. At first, I couldn’t tell if he would be cruel, simple, cold and callous, or a reserved goodness. There are so many rules for Siri, even as wife to the GK. Of course, this has lead to some amusing situations and conversations. Bluefingers’ advice not to touch the GK, when they are suppose to have sex and create an heir – that conversation had me laughing on the second time through just as much as the first.

4. The title – Warbreaker – what do you think it might refer to?

The title had me guessing up to near the end my first time through. I like not having all the answers right away in a story.

So early on in the book, the reader is introduced to how close to the surface war is brewing. Between that and the title, we know the theme of war is important.

Other Tidbits:

Vivenna is also an interesting character. She has defied her father and secretly followed her sister to the God King’s city. She firmly believes her sister is in desperate need of saving. I found it very interesting how quickly she is overwhelmed by the new environment and then thrown for a loop by Lemex’s death.

Can you imagine going from pretty self-serving and living in a prudish society to having people whose job it is to bathe you? Now, does Siri get to scrub her important bits, or is this done for her too?

Lightsong refers to a Goddess that was the last decent Returned. I would like to learn more about her (Calmseer) and her relationship with Lightsong.

15 thoughts on “Warbreaker Read Along Part I

  1. Amanda says:

    Ooh I’m glad we have a re-reader here with us! I was a re-reader in the Mistborn group read of Carl’s, and it was fun to go over my first-time thoughts and then have my little invisible spoilery section at the end. :D

    Nightblood intrigues me as well.

    • nrlymrtl says:

      I’m catching several things I missed the first time round. And I am having a great time hearing all the tidbits that intrigue everyone else!

  2. I thought there was a lot to learn when I started this book but I got into it really quickly, you’re right in saying there’s lots of detail but it’s slipped into the story seemlessly.

    I laughed at the no touching conversation too, I expected Bluefingers to be less approachable but he seems like he may look out for Siri in her new world. Although it seems to be the world Siri has been looking for all her life, I can see her fitting in well in her new home once she gets the hang of things. She may not even need (or want) rescuing by Vivenna before long and then what will happen!

    • Naithin says:

      I had wondered this too, actually.

      If by the time Vivi managed to effect a rescue if Siri would still even want it. Siri has been very irked by being ‘trapped’ indoors all the time, but she has also shown some signs of adapting.

      Guess we’ll have to see!

    • nrlymrtl says:

      I think my first indication that Siri might fit in at T’Telir was learning about her difficulty controlling her hair color back home. On one hand, it would be cool to change your hair color with controlled thought/emotion, on the other hand it could be more embarrassing than a blush….

  3. Grace says:

    I loved the cover as well. It’s completely different than the types of covers that I normally like, and yet it sums up the atmosphere of the book so perfectly.

    Siri’s gonna get herself in trouble if she isn’t careful, and by doing so she might end up saving them all.

    • nrlymrtl says:

      Sanderson books consistently have great covers. Do you think he has some sway with the artists or the publishers to get the artists he wants?

  4. I actually got into this book more easily than Mistborn, which I found a bit bewildering at first for some reason.

    I also liked the Thugs: I hope we get to see more of them because their banter was very entertaining. :)

    I agree: the religion seems to be very corrupt, although I suspect that the priests are the ones who really benefit the most from this. I dread to think how much they take in bribes for people to be allowed to make a petition.

    I don’t think Siri gets to scrub any of her ‘bits’ herself! :D

    • nrlymrtl says:

      Yeah – I expect those priests are pretty well off because of the bribes and other perks.

      “I don’t think Siri gets to scrub any of her ‘bits’ herself”
      One word – Awkward.

  5. Naithin says:

    Like Amanda, I’m also glad we have a re-reader along for the ride. :)

    Can be very fun to pick up on the foreshadowing when you know what things are leading to.

  6. I completely agree about the cover, gorgeous! And I like that it accurately incorporates elements of the story; too often covers are kind of deceiving which disappoints me :(

    I’m glad you brought up Nightblood, I had almost forgotten (don’t tell him D: ) and I really like him so far and really hope we find out how he was created since that definitely promises to be an interesting story :D

    Vivenna hasn’t quite done it for me yet since her switch in personality was a little startling given that she has been obedient her whole life and then just decides to run away and save her sister. It seems out of character and I’m hoping that her personality gets solidified a bit more, though it could just be a symptom of an author’s earlier work too.

    • nrlymrtl says:

      Vivenna’s obedience had a purpose and that purpose was taken away when she was ordered into a carriage and a marriage that would be advantageous for her folks – one she had spent her life training for. So, he disobedience in this one thing didn’t strike me as too odd. It did take me longer to bond with her character the first read through.

      Nightblood is intriguing and entertaining and deadly all in one.

  7. TBM says:

    I was so sad when I couldn’t join this read along. I need to add this book to my TBR.

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