Thoughts on Firefight

16 January 2015 14:00

This morning I finished reading Brandon Sanderson’s latest novel, Firefight, which I mentioned in my previous post. It’s the sequel to Steelheart, which was released in 2013, and which is easily in the top 5 of novels I finished in record time, and it was easily one of my favorite books of that year. As such, I was really happy when Amazon sent me an e-mail that my pre-order for its sequel Firefight had been released. Just to be sure I didn’t miss anything, I re-read both Steelheart and Mitosis (a short story that takes place between Steelheart and Firefight).

This post should be mostly spoiler-free.

Contrary to the record time in which I finished Steelheart, it took me several days to finish reading Firefight. This didn’t really have much to do with the book itself, but with my own schedule more than anything else. So, as I said, I finished reading the story this morning.

First off, not quite as awesome as Steelheart is by no means small praise. I really liked Firefight, but I just didn’t have the same OH MY GOD THAT WAS AWESOME response to it. Firefight has the same issue a lot of middle books in trilogies have, namely that it’s building on something but yet has to lead into something else, while also trying to remain self-contained. Often, these books feel transitory. They’re advancing the storyline, and can even be quite fun to read, but they don’t pack quite the punch the first part does. In many cases, the author then uses this to build to a big climax in the next part. I had the same issue with the second Mistborn book, as well as some middle books in Terry Brooks’ more recent work. Generally, reading the final part solves any issues I may have.

What also might help is re-reading both Steelheart and Firefight shortly before Calamity comes out. My knowledge of what happens in Firefight might even reveal things I didn’t notice in Steelheart. Unfortunately, Calamity doesn’t come out until later next year. It’s a good thing I still have plenty of books to read and on my re-read list.

Speaking of which, I’ve decided to add the Demon Cycle by Peter V. Brett to the list, since the fourth part is coming out at the end of March. I’ll give that one priority over the Dresden Files, meaning I’ll be reading The Painted Man next.