Enjoy millions of ebooks, audiobooks, magazines, and more, with a free trial

Only $11.99/month after trial. Cancel anytime.

Mistborn: The Final Empire
Mistborn: The Final Empire
Mistborn: The Final Empire
Audiobook24 hours

Mistborn: The Final Empire

Written by Brandon Sanderson

Narrated by Michael Kramer

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars



About this audiobook

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Brandon Sanderson, the Mistborn series is a heist story of political intrigue and magical, martial-arts action.

For a thousand years the ash fell and no flowers bloomed. For a thousand years the Skaa slaved in misery and lived in fear. For a thousand years the Lord Ruler, the "Sliver of Infinity," reigned with absolute power and ultimate terror, divinely invincible. Then, when hope was so long lost that not even its memory remained, a terribly scarred, heart-broken half-Skaa rediscovered it in the depths of the Lord Ruler's most hellish prison. Kelsier "snapped" and found in himself the powers of a Mistborn. A brilliant thief and natural leader, he turned his talents to the ultimate caper, with the Lord Ruler himself as the mark.

Kelsier recruited the underworld's elite, the smartest and most trustworthy allomancers, each of whom shares one of his many powers, and all of whom relish a high-stakes challenge. Only then does he reveal his ultimate dream, not just the greatest heist in history, but the downfall of the divine despot.

But even with the best criminal crew ever assembled, Kel's plan looks more like the ultimate long shot, until luck brings a ragged girl named Vin into his life. Like him, she's a half-Skaa orphan, but she's lived a much harsher life. Vin has learned to expect betrayal from everyone she meets, and gotten it. She will have to learn to trust, if Kel is to help her master powers of which she never dreamed.

This saga dares to ask a simple question: What if the hero of prophecy fails?

Other Tor books by Brandon Sanderson

The Cosmere

The Stormlight Archive
The Way of Kings
Words of Radiance
Edgedancer (Novella)

The Mistborn trilogy
Mistborn: The Final Empire
The Well of Ascension
The Hero of Ages

Mistborn: The Wax and Wayne series
Alloy of Law
Shadows of Self
Bands of Mourning

Arcanum Unbounded

Other Cosmere novels

The Alcatraz vs. the Evil Librarians series
Alcatraz vs. the Evil Librarians
The Scrivener's Bones
The Knights of Crystallia
The Shattered Lens
The Dark Talent

The Rithmatist series
The Rithmatist

Other books by Brandon Sanderson

The Reckoners

Release dateDec 23, 2008
Mistborn: The Final Empire

Reviews for Mistborn

Rating: 4.015512169029152 out of 5 stars

3,739 ratings213 reviews

What did you think?

Tap to rate

Review must be at least 10 words

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    Mistborn: The Final Emipre is a classic-feeling, escapist fantasy novel filled with a mixture of politics, plotting, and magically-enhanced spying and combat. Set mostly in the capitol of an ancient empire ruled by a malevolent, powerful Lord Ruler, the book tells the tale of a struggle to free the oppressed masses from subjugation and slavery.The showpiece of the book is Sanderson's metal-based magic system, Allomancy, which allows certain individuals (with inherited talent) to swallow and "burn" metals to achieve eight particular magical effects. Most of the first half of the book is devoted to introducing and demonstrating this magic system, sometimes in painstaking detail- one friend commented that the novel feels like a "pilot" for the magic system, rather than a full-fledged story. I wouldn't go that far, but I do think the first half of the book could have been shortened (or, alternatively, filled with more character development) by spending less time on the mechanics of Allomancy. At least it is a good magic system, leading to combat and diplomacy that is reminiscent of the Chinese Wuxia genre.The characters in Mistborn are not especially deep, although many of them are endearing, and the two protagonists (Kelsier and Vin) grow on you by the end of the book. The characters, their thoughts, and their reactions all are described properly and competently, almost as though a literary formula for creating characters is being followed. While the athletic and combat prowess of some characters is impressive and well-described, there are no similar feats of great cleverness, which is too bad, since readers can "participate" to some degree in the formation of clever ideas, but they can only "watch" athletics. Most characters have little emotional depth; Vin has the most, and she does have some touching scenes in the latter parts of the book. On the whole, though, the characters are more psychologically resilient, rational, and calculating than real people.The book feels like it is targeting the Young Adult market- particularly because of its determined teenage heroine, clear white and black morality, and lack of any material concerning sex. The book's tone is neither light nor dark- there is slavery and somewhat frequent killing, but the real experience of living as a member of a brutally oppressed underclass isn't conveyed.Mistborn: The Final Empire is a very solid choice for younger readers- I'd certainly give a copy to a teenager, for instance. Vin would be a good role model for a girl at certain stages of life. However, an adult hoping for a book with emotional depth, brilliant characters, an original setting, or fascinating new ideas may need to look elsewhere.
  • Rating: 1 out of 5 stars
    Formulaic. Not a single surprise in the entire book.
  • Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    Overall - Insightful, original, exciting, satisfying and bloody, "Mistborn" was a top notch fantasy read. I was pleasantly surprised by the Bran San's use of faith. However, I am unable to give the full 5 stars for it's reference to the most cliché theme ever, Good vs. Evil. What I loved - The magic system. By the Lord Ruler what an amazing magic system! It's beyond me how someone could make such a realistic and believable system, Allomancy and Feruchemy have definately won me over and changes the way I will forever look at magic.The ending, blew my mind. Wow. What a fantastic way to end it, I didn't see the twist coming and I was left just star struck! For these two reasons alone, read the book.Vin was awesome. She was everything I hoped for in a protagonist! Someone who thinks utterly different for me, and so bad ass.Kelsier was cool, but just because someone's cool doesn't mean I'll like them. (Kinf of spoiler alert) I was honestly hoping for Kelsier to overthrow the empire and keep it for himself, but Kelsier's conclusion still was very satisfying. Way to go, Kelsier Christ!The setting was just fantastic. I love dark and bloody worlds, and this is some of the darkest and bloodiest stuff you will encounter! The amount of death and destruction was quite heavy, not the heaviest, but man relatively this is Batista to the world's largest man.Body modifications are readily used, something I personally have lots of interest in! I wish I could store energy in my piercings... What I disliked -I'm soooooooo tired of the Good vs. Evil theme, not only is it trite and way overused, but it's a naive concept! Was The lord ruler evil or good? Neither, he was a man consumed by fear, hatred and literal power, something certain people would consider "evil forces" but those are just survival instincts and tools, which were used to hurt other people unfortunately. That's another thing. Would you consider the deepness evil? Well, so far I have a very limited knowledge on the deepness, but I'm going to assume it's like every other "evil force", such as the Scourge in Weaveworld, or the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs. Do I think it should be stopped? Yes, survival is an instinct of humans. Is it evil though? Is winter evil? No, death and destruction are a part of life, the world has a balance between life and death, neither of which are evil, they just are. Couldn't there be a more realistic themes going on? I would've loved for Bran San to stick more to the battle between opression and free will.What bothers me as well is the author creates this world of "Good vs. Evil", yet the martyr, the jesus christ of Mistborn, Kelsier kills nobles indiscriminately, yet claims "Oh yeah there's good and evil". Like how fucking hypocritical.I disliked and liked - Brandon Sanderson's quotes on faith. Before this, my understanding of faith was a stuborness and ignorance to believe in something that has no proof or backing. Did my view change? Slightly. I think faith can also be used in a good way. Faith can be linked to hope, the feeling that when everything is pushing you down and nothing but adversity presents itself, you can get back up and persevere. I like the way Sazed put it, how it's hard tobelieve in failure, and how faith is meant as a tool of perserverance. However, when you have irresputible and undeniable evidence that you are wrong, and/or your views do harm to the world (Most organized religion) then you shouldn't continue to claim ignorance and hold onto such harmful and faulty views, such is the nature of progression.
  • Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    The 'magic' system is interesting and all, but I don't have the attention span to remember all of its idiosyncrasies. Fortunately, the author is good at reinforcing the purpose of each element as he writes the action scenes, so even someone who hardly pays attention to them can follow. And the action scenes are good, if a little long. My coworker thinks this would be a great movie. Could be, we decided, as long as it isn't by Disney.

    That said, it is a bit slow-moving in the beginning, and I almost didn't read it because one of the characters is an orphan thief girl. Now, you all know that trope has been done to death, but the author did a great job making Vin interesting, and he (thankfully) didn't focus overlong on her growing up on the streets or her day-to-day life before joining Kelsier's crew, although it is mentioned from time-to-time.

    In the end, all of his characters seemed reminiscent of David Eddings characters, colorful and each with their own motivations and reasons to be part of the story. I liked most of them.

    One of the monsters makes me shudder just thinking about them. The Steel Inquisitors are like the Pyramid Heads from Silent Hill. I can't even imagine how the author came up with them.

    Since a ton of people have already wrote of how good this book is, I wanted to talk about the parts that I did not like. However, the parts I did not like turned out to be important either near the end of the book or in the sequel (which I'm in the middle of as I write this), so they are all non-issues now:

    I thought that Straff Venture's talk with Elend about his lack of interest in pursuing women was painfully blunt and unnecessary -- but it turns out to be an important part of Straff Venture's character in the sequel, so I'll give it a pass.

    I was a little bored by Sazed's religious talks, but religion is a big theme in the entire series and is also important to his character. He turns out to be one of the better characters once you understand his purpose.

    Maybe the kandra could have been mentioned earlier since I didn't even 'get' what happened with it at the end until the sequel.

    I thought this book could have been standalone, but so far the sequel has its merits. I'll modify this if I decide I don't like it in the end (e.g. like what happened with the Wayfarer Redemption series)

    In the end, I thought this was far better than Elantris, the first book of Sanderson's that I've read and which I also really enjoyed, and I look forward to what he comes up with next.

    Super Edit: My Verdict on the series
    Read this first book. Skip the rest.
  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    I put off reading Sanderson for a while just because the hype scared me away a bit. I've been reading through Wheel of Time and when I needed a break from the series decided I might as well give Sanderson as try, since I'd be reading him soon anyway.So glad I finally did. What a great book, it really reminded my of the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by NK Jemisin in the way he manages to fuse a dark atmosphere with a light readability, a fantasy action novel with an intimate narrative style, a sense of breadth an history with immediacy and tension, and integrates romance naturally into a story without it seeming stuck on artificially. It wasn't perfect, some of Vin's character developments seemed to jump forward without the growth being shown, the magic system got confusing at times, and the ending that everyone loved so much was, indeed, amazing, but felt like it tied relatively little up. Those flaws can easily be excused as long as the rest of the series keeps up the great overall presentation he achieved here. Don't know why I waited so long to read him, but I definitely won't wait long to continue.
  • Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
    This was one of those books where an overall score doesn't really work because from about 65% the book finally picked up and was awesome. But the first massive chunk was a slow grind that had me desperately wanting to have the book done with so I could move onto something else. The world building is amazing, and I liked the idea of a world set after a hero saved the world... and things didn't end up better. I totally did not see the ending coming at all and am starting the next book straight away, so yes, it got a lot better.