The Alloy of Law (Mistborn Series #4)

( 238 )

Overview

Fresh from the success of The Way of Kings, Brandon Sanderson, best known for completing Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time®, takes a break to return to the world of the bestselling Mistborn series.

Three hundred years after the events of the Mistborn trilogy, Scadrial is now on the verge of modernity, with railroads to supplement the canals, electric lighting in the streets and the homes of the wealthy, and the first steel-framed skyscrapers racing...

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Overview

Fresh from the success of The Way of Kings, Brandon Sanderson, best known for completing Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time®, takes a break to return to the world of the bestselling Mistborn series.

Three hundred years after the events of the Mistborn trilogy, Scadrial is now on the verge of modernity, with railroads to supplement the canals, electric lighting in the streets and the homes of the wealthy, and the first steel-framed skyscrapers racing for the clouds.

Kelsier, Vin, Elend, Sazed, Spook, and the rest are now part of history—or religion. Yet even as science and technology are reaching new heights, the old magics of Allomancy and Feruchemy continue to play a role in this reborn world. Out in the frontier lands known as the Roughs, they are crucial tools for the brave men and women attempting to establish order and justice.

One such is Waxillium Ladrian, a rare Twinborn, who can Push on metals with his Allomancy and use Feruchemy to become lighter or heavier at will.  After twenty years in the Roughs, Wax has been forced by family tragedy to return to the metropolis of Elendel. Now he must reluctantly put away his guns and assume the duties and dignity incumbent upon the head of a noble house. Or so he thinks, until he learns the hard way that the mansions and elegant tree-lined streets of the city can be even more dangerous than the dusty plains of the Roughs.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

Three hundred years have passed since the events of the Mistborn trilogy and Scadrial has changed. Electric lights now illuminate its streets, buildings soar into the skies, and the planet is a hive of commerce. Waxillium Ladrian has spent twenty years in the dangerous frontier wilderness known as the Roughs. When a family tragedy calls him back to Elendel, he imagines that he is leaving danger for the safety of urban civility. Little does he know what grave dangers await him.....

Publishers Weekly
Sanderson gives the world of Scadrial the Wild West treatment in this rollicking adventure tale set 300 years after the popular Mistborn epic fantasy trilogy. This “side deviation” gives up swords for guns, and while the three-part magic system of Allomancy, Feruchemy, and Hemalurgy continues to play a crucial role in the story, Scadrial itself is on the cusp of modernity. Wax, a lawkeeper gifted with both Allomantic and Feruchemical powers, has returned to the circular city of Elendel to take his uncle’s place as Lord Ladrian. When a gang of thieves known as the Vanishers begins stealing from railcars and kidnapping ladies, Wax, his miscreant buddy Wayne, and the intelligent and pretty Marasi decide they are honor-bound to uncover the perpetrators and save the victims. Part Sherlock Holmes, part X-Men, this exciting stand-alone adventure is full of close shaves, shootouts, and witty banter. (Nov.)
Library Journal
Sanderson sets his latest fantasy in the same world as his "Mistborn" trilogy (The Final Empire; The Well of Ascension; The Hero of Ages), but that world has changed. Three hundred years have passed, and technology has moved forward, bringing trains, limited electricity, and guns. Waxillium Ladrian, a Twinborn who has inherited powers of Allomancy and Feruchemy, returns to the city of Elendel after 20 years in the uncivilized Roughs only to find that civilization can be much more complicated and dangerous than he ever imagined. Sanderson has skillfully woven together an intricate plot with new complex, imperfect heroes. VERDICT Highly recommended for fantasy fans, especially followers of the original trilogy. This fantasy is not a stale visit to a fondly remembered setting. Rather, it offers a fresh view of how a world can grow, building new dimensions into the best of the old. Sanderson continues to show that he is one of the best authors in the genre. [See Prepub Alert, 6/13/11.]—William Baer, Georgia Inst. of Technology Lib., Atlanta
Library Journal
After he was drafted to complete Robert Jordan's blockbuster "Wheel of Time" series, Sanderson himself became a best-selling author. Here he returns to the world he created in the "Mistborn" series, only it's three centuries later and Scadriel has modernized. Allomancy and Feruchemy are still practiced, however, and a gifted user named Waxillium Ladrian finds himself assuming duties as the new head of a noble house after decades on the margins. All fantasy readers will want.
Kirkus Reviews
Sanderson returns to planet Scadrial (The Hero of Ages, 2008, etc.) where, 500 years later, the scenario is a fantasy Wild West where the largest city, Elendel, despite its unpredictable mists, boasts railroads, electric street lighting and nascent skyscrapers. Though lesser beings than their godlike ancestors, certain citizens gain magic powers from an ability to metabolize metals. Waxillium Ladrian, a rare Twinborn, can both attract and repel metals using Allomancy and gain or lose bodily mass via Feruchemy. Having spent 20 years in the Roughs--Tombstone in the 1880s, with every day a bad day--expunging evildoers, Wax has learned that House Ladrian, complete with supercilious butler, is all but bankrupt thanks to a profligate uncle. Sadly he returns to Elendel to do his duty and marry a rich heiress. Lord Harms presents his rather too well-organized daughter Steris, who arrives for introductions complete with a 20-page pre-nuptial agreement. Accompanying father and daughter is penniless cousin Marasi, more intelligent and personable and vastly more attractive. Meanwhile, strange crimes are afoot: mysterious thieves, "Vanishers," have stolen consignments from railroad cars, raided parties and taken hostages. It's eventually deduced that the hostages may be the Vanishers' real targets: all are descended from the same ancient family, and all have specific magic powers. And, at the first social event Wax attends with Lord Harms and the two girls, the Vanishers strike again. Sanderson's fresh ideas on the source and employment of magic are both arresting and original--just don't expect rigorously worked out plot details, memorable characters or narrative depth. Think brisk. Think fun. Butch Cassidy territory--ignore the tumbleweeds and enjoy.
From the Publisher

Sanderson continues to show that he is one of the best authors in the genre.”
Library Journal, starred review

“Part Sherlock Holmes, Part X-Men, this exciting stand-alone adventure is full of close shaves, shootouts, and witty banter.”  —Publishers Weekly


“Rive with laugh-out-loud moments, religious and philosophical ponderings, and plenty of crime-fighting action, this book fits nicely in any gun-holster.”  —Booklist on The Alloy of Law

 

“An engaging and fun romp of a read. The characters really shine.”
RT Book Reviews on The Alloy of Law

 

“Sanderson’s fresh ideas on the source and employment of magic are both arresting and original.”
Kirkus Reviews on The Alloy of Law

Praise for the Mistborn series and Brandon Sanderson

“[The Hero of Ages] brings the Mistborn epic fantasy trilogy to a dramatic and surprising climax…. Sanderson’s saga of consequences offers complex characters and a compelling plot, asking hard questions about loyalty, faith, and responsibility.”  —Publishers Weekly

“Sanderson is an evil genius. There is simply no other way to describe what he’s managed to pull off in this transcendent final volume of his Mistborn trilogy.”
—RT Book Reviews (Gold Medal, Top Pick!) on The Hero of Ages

Mistborn utilizes a well thought-out system of magic. It also has a great cast of believable characters, a plausible world, an intriguing political system and, despite being the first book of a trilogy, a very satisfying ending. Highly recommended to anyone hungry for a good read.”  —Robin Hobb

“ It’s rare for a fiction writer to have much understanding of how leadership works and how love really takes root in the human heart. Sanderson is astonishingly wise.”  —Orson Scott Card

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780765330420
  • Publisher: Doherty, Tom Associates, LLC
  • Publication date: 11/8/2011
  • Series: Mistborn Series , #4
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 282,171
  • Product dimensions: 6.46 (w) x 9.34 (h) x 1.16 (d)

Meet the Author

Brandon Sanderson

Brandon Sanderson grew up in Lincoln, Nebraska. He lives in Utah with his wife and children and teaches creative writing at Brigham Young University. He will shortly complete Robert Jordan’s bestselling Wheel of Time® series with the long-awaited A Memory of Light.

Michael Kramer has narrated over 100 works for many bestselling authors. He has received Audiofile magazine's Earphones Award for the Kent Family series by John Jakes and for Alan Fulsom's The Day After Tomorrow. He has also read for Robert Jordan’s epic Wheel of Time fantasy-adventure series. His work includes recording books for the Library of Congress’s Talking Books program for the blind and physically handicapped.

 

Michael also works as an actor in the Washington, D.C. area, where he lives with his wife, Jennifer Mendenhall, and their two children. He has appeared as Lord Rivers in Richard III at The Shakespeare Theatre, Howie/Merlin in The Kennedy Center’s production of The Light of Excalibur, Sam Riggs and Frederick Savage in Woody Allen’s Central Park West/Riverside Drive, and Dr. Qari Shah in Tony Kushner’s Homebody/Kabul at Theatre J.

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Read an Excerpt

PROLOGUE

Wax crept along the ragged fence in a crouch, his boots scraping the dry ground. He held his Sterrion 36 up by his head, the long, silvery barrel dusted with red clay. The revolver was nothing fancy to look at, though the six-shot cylinder was machined with such care in the steel-alloy frame that there was no play in its movement. There was no gleam to the metal or exotic material on the grip. But it fit his hand like it was meant to be there.

The waist-high fence was flimsy, the wood grayed with time, held together with fraying lengths of rope. It smelled of age. Even the worms had given up on this wood long ago.

Wax peeked up over the knotted boards, scanning the empty town. Blue lines hovered in his vision, extending from his chest to point at nearby sources of metal, a result of his Allomancy. Burning steel did that; it let him see the location of sources of metal, then Push against them if he wanted. His weight against the weight of the item. If it was heavier, he was pushed back. If he was heavier, it was pushed forward.

In this case, however, he didn't Push. He just watched the lines to see if any of the metal was moving. None of it was. Nails holding together buildings, spent shell casings lying scattered in the dust, or horseshoes piled at the silent smithy—all were as motionless as the old hand pump planted in the ground to his right.

Wary, he too remained still. Steel continued to burn comfortably in his stomach, and so—as a precaution—he gently Pushed outward from himself in all directions. It was a trick he'd mastered a few years back; he didn't Push on any specific metal objects, but created a kind of defensive bubble around himself. Any metal that came streaking in his direction would be thrown slightly off course.

It was far from foolproof; he could still get hit. But shots would go wild, not striking where they were aimed. It had saved his life on a couple of occasions. He wasn't even certain how he did it; Allomancy was often an instinctive thing for him. Somehow he even managed to exempt the metal he carried, and didn't Push his own gun from his hands.

That done, he continued along the fence—still watching the metal lines to make sure nobody was sneaking up on him. Feltrel had once been a prosperous town. That had been twenty years back. Then a clan of koloss had taken up residence nearby. Things hadn't gone well.

Today, the dead town seemed completely empty, though he knew it wasn't so. Wax had come here hunting a psychopath. And he wasn't the only one.

He grabbed the top of the fence and hopped over, feet grinding red clay. Crouching low, he ran in a squat over to the side of the old blacksmith's forge. His clothing was terribly dusty, but well tailored: a fine suit, a silver cravat at the neck, twinkling cuff links on the sleeves of his fine white shirt. He had cultivated a look that appeared out of place, as if he were planning to attend a fine ball back in Elendel rather than scrambling through a dead town in the Roughs hunting a murderer. Completing the ensemble, he wore a bowler hat on his head to keep off the sun.

A sound; someone stepped on a board across the street, making it creak. It was so faint, he almost missed it. Wax reacted immediately, flaring the steel that burned inside his stomach. He Pushed on a group of nails in the wall beside him just as the crack of a gunshot split the air.

His sudden Push caused the wall to rattle, the old rusty nails straining in their places. His Push shoved him to the side, and he rolled across the ground. A blue line appeared for an eyeblink—the bullet, which hit the ground where he had been a moment before. As he came up from his roll, a second shot followed. This one came close, but bent just a hair out of the way as it neared him.

Deflected by his steel bubble, the bullet zipped past his ear. Another inch to the right, and he'd have gotten it in the forehead—steel bubble or no. Breathing calmly, he raised his Sterrion and sighted on the balcony of the old hotel across the street, where the shot had come from. The balcony was fronted by the hotel's sign, capable of hiding a gunman.

Wax fired, then Pushed on the bullet, slamming it forward with extra thrust to make it faster and more penetrating. He wasn't using typical lead or copper-jacketed lead bullets; he needed something stronger.

The large-caliber steel-jacketed bullet hit the balcony, and his extra power caused it to puncture the wood and hit the man behind. The blue line leading to the man's gun quivered as he fell. Wax stood up slowly, brushing the dust from his clothing. At that moment another shot cracked in the air.

He cursed, reflexively Pushing against the nails again, though his instincts told him he'd be too late. By the time he heard a shot, it was too late for Pushing to help.

This time he was thrown to the ground. That force had to go somewhere, and if the nails couldn't move, he had to. He grunted as he hit and raised his revolver, dust sticking to the sweat on his hand. He searched frantically for the one who'd fired at him. They'd missed. Perhaps the steel bubble had—

A body rolled off the top of the blacksmith's shop and thumped down to the ground with a puff of red dust. Wax blinked, then raised his gun to chest level and moved over behind the fence again, crouching down for cover. He kept an eye on the blue Allomantic lines. They could warn him if someone got close, but only if the person was carrying or wearing metal.

The body that had fallen beside the building didn't have a single line pointing to it. However, another set of quivering lines pointed to something moving along the back of the forge. Wax leveled his gun, taking aim as a figure ducked around the side of the building and ran toward him.

The woman wore a white duster, reddened at the bottom. She kept her dark hair pulled back in a tail, and wore trousers and a wide belt, with thick boots on her feet. She had a squarish face. A strong face, with lips that often rose slightly at the right side in a half smile.

Wax heaved a sigh of relief and lowered his gun. "Lessie."

"You knock yourself to the ground again?" she asked as she reached the cover of the fence beside him. "You've got more dust on your face than Miles has scowls. Maybe it's time for you to retire, old man."

"Lessie, I'm three months older than you are."

"Those are a long three months." She peeked up over the fence. "Seen anyone else?"

"I dropped a man up on the balcony," Wax said. "I couldn't see if it was Bloody Tan or not."

"It wasn't," she said. "He wouldn't have tried to shoot you from so far away."

Wax nodded. Tan liked things personal. Up close. The psychopath lamented when he had to use a gun, and he rarely shot someone without being able to see the fear in their eyes.

Lessie scanned the quiet town, then glanced at him, ready to move. Her eyes flickered downward for a moment. Toward his shirt pocket.

Wax followed her gaze. A letter was peeking out of his pocket, delivered earlier that day. It was from the grand city of Elendel, and was addressed to Lord Waxillium Ladrian. A name Wax hadn't used in years. A name that felt wrong to him now.

He tucked the letter farther into his pocket. Lessie thought it implied more than it did. The city didn't hold anything for him now, and House Ladrian would get along without him. He really should have burned that letter.

Wax nodded toward the fallen man beside the wall to distract her from the letter. "Your work?"

"He had a bow," she said. "Stone arrowheads. Almost had you from above."

"Thanks."

She shrugged, eyes glittering in satisfaction. Those eyes now had lines at the sides of them, weathered by the Roughs' harsh sunlight. There had been a time when she and Wax had kept a tally of who had saved the other most often. They'd both lost track years ago.

"Cover me," Wax said softly.

"With what?" she asked. "Paint? Kisses? You're already covered with dust."

Wax raised an eyebrow at her.

"Sorry," she said, grimacing. "I've been playing cards too much with Wayne lately."

He snorted and ran in a crouch to the fallen corpse and rolled it over. The man had been a cruel-faced fellow with several days of stubble on his cheeks; the bullet wound bled out his right side. I think I recognize him, Wax thought to himself as he went through the man's pockets and came out with a drop of red glass, colored like blood.

He hurried back to the fence.

"Well?" Lessie asked.

"Donal's crew," Wax said, holding up the drop of glass.

"Bastards," Lessie said. "They couldn't just leave us to it, could they?"

"You did shoot his son, Lessie."

"And you shot his brother."

"Mine was self-defense."

"Mine was too," she said. "That kid was annoying. Besides, he survived."

"Missing a toe."

"You don't need ten," she said. "I have a cousin with four. She does just fine." She raised her revolver, scanning the empty town. "Of course, she does look kind of ridiculous. Cover me."

"With what?"

She just grinned and ducked out from behind the cover, scrambling across the ground toward the smithy.

Harmony, Wax thought with a smile, I love that woman.

He watched for more gunmen, but Lessie reached the building without any further shots being fired. Wax nodded to her, then dashed across the street toward the hotel. He ducked inside, checking the corners for foes. The taproom was empty, so he took cover beside the doorway, waving toward Lessie. She ran down to the next building on her side of the street and checked it out.

Donal's crew. Yes, Wax had shot his brother—the man had been robbing a railway car at the time. From what he understood, though, Donal hadn't ever cared for his brother. No, the only thing that riled Donal was losing money, which was probably why he was here. He'd put a price on Bloody Tan's head for stealing a shipment of his bendalloy. Donal probably hadn't expected Wax to come hunting Tan the same day he did, but his men had standing orders to shoot Wax or Lessie if seen.

Wax was half tempted to leave the dead town and let Donal and Tan have at it. The thought of it made his eye twitch, though. He'd promised to bring Tan in. That was that.

Lessie waved from the inside of her building, then pointed toward the back. She was going to go out in that direction and creep along behind the next set of buildings. Wax nodded, then made a curt gesture. He'd try to hook up with Wayne and Barl, who had gone to check the other side of the town.

Lessie vanished, and Wax picked his way through the old hotel toward a side door. He passed old, dirty nests made by both rats and men. The town picked up miscreants the way a dog picked up fleas. He even passed a place where it looked like some wayfarer had made a small firepit on a sheet of metal with a ring of rocks. It was a wonder the fool hadn't burned the entire building to the ground.

Wax eased open the side door and stepped into an alleyway between the hotel and the store beside it. The gunshots earlier would have been heard, and someone might come looking. Best to stay out of sight.

Wax edged around the back of the store, stepping quietly across the red-clay ground. The hillside here was overgrown with weeds except for the entrance to an old cold cellar. Wax wound around it, then paused, eyeing the wood-framed pit.

Maybe . . .

He knelt beside the opening, peering down. There had been a ladder here once, but it had rotted away—the remnants were visible below in a pile of old splinters. The air smelled musty and wet . . . with a hint of smoke. Someone had been burning a torch down there.

Wax dropped a bullet into the hole, then leaped in, gun out. As he fell, he filled his iron metalmind, decreasing his weight. He was Twinborn—a Feruchemist as well as an Allomancer. His Allomantic power was Steelpushing, and his Feruchemical power, called Skimming, was the ability to grow heavier or lighter. It was a powerful combination of talents.

He Pushed against the round below him, slowing his fall so that he landed softly. He returned his weight to normal—or, well, normal for him. He often went about at three-quarters of his unadjusted weight, making himself lighter on his feet, quicker to react.

He crept through the darkness. It had been a long, difficult road, finding where Bloody Tan was hiding. In the end, the fact that Feltrel had suddenly emptied of other bandits, wanderers, and unfortunates had been a major clue. Wax stepped softly, working his way deeper into the cellar. The scent of smoke was stronger here, and though the light was fading, he made out a firepit beside the earthen wall. That and a ladder that could be moved into place at the entrance.

That gave him pause. It indicated that whoever was making their hideout in the cellar—it could be Tan, or it could be someone else entirely—was still down here. Unless there was another way out. Wax crept forward a little farther, squinting in the dark.

There was light ahead.

Wax cocked his gun softly, then drew a little vial out of his mistcoat and pulled the cork with his teeth. He downed the whiskey and steel in one shot, restoring his reserves. He flared his steel. Yes . . . there was metal ahead of him, down the tunnel. How long was this cellar? He had assumed it would be small, but the reinforcing wood timbers indicated something deeper, longer. More like a mine adit.

He crept forward, focused on those metal lines. Someone would have to aim a gun if they saw him, and the metal would quiver, giving him a chance to Push the weapon out of their hands. Nothing moved. He slid forward, smelling musty damp soil, fungus, potatoes left to bud. He approached a trembling light, but could hear nothing. The metal lines did not move.

Finally, he got close enough to make out a lamp hanging by a hook on a wooden beam near the wall. Something else hung at the center of the tunnel. A body? Hanged? Wax cursed softly and hurried forward, wary of a trap. It was a corpse, but it left him baffled. At first glance, it seemed years old. The eyes were gone from the skull, the skin pulled back against the bone. It didn't stink, and wasn't bloated.

He thought he recognized it. Geormin, the coachman who brought mail into Weathering from the more distant villages around the area. That was his uniform, at least, and it seemed like his hair. He'd been one of Tan's first victims, the disappearance that sent Wax hunting. That had only been two months back.

He's been mummified, Wax thought. Prepared and dried like leather. He felt revolted—he'd gone drinking with Geormin on occasion, and though the man cheated at cards, he'd been an amiable enough fellow.

The hanging wasn't an ordinary one, either. Wires had been used to prop up Geormin's arms so they were out to the sides, his head cocked, his mouth pried open. Wax turned away from the gruesome sight, his eye twitching.

Careful, he told himself. Don't let him anger you. Keep focused. He would be back to cut Geormin down. Right now, he couldn't afford to make the noise. At least he knew he was on the right track. This was certainly Bloody Tan's lair.

There was another patch of light in the distance. How long was this tunnel? He approached the pool of light, and here found another corpse, this one hung on the wall sideways. Annarel, a visiting geologist who had vanished soon after Geormin. Poor woman. She'd been dried in the same manner, body spiked to the wall in a very specific pose, as if she were on her knees inspecting a pile of rocks.

Another pool of light drew him onward. Clearly this wasn't a cellar—it was probably some kind of smuggling tunnel left over from the days when Feltrel had been a booming town. Tan hadn't built this, not with those aged wooden supports.

Wax passed another six corpses, each lit by its own glowing lantern, each arranged in some kind of pose. One sat in a chair, another strung up as if flying, a few stuck to the wall. The later ones were more fresh, the last one recently killed. Wax didn't recognize the slender man, who hung with hand to his head in a salute.

Rust and Ruin, Wax thought. This isn't Bloody Tan's lair . . . it's his gallery.

Sickened, Wax made his way to the next pool of light. This one was different. Brighter. As he approached, he realized that he was seeing sunlight streaming down from a square cut in the ceiling. The tunnel led up to it, probably to a former trapdoor that had rotted or broken away. The ground sloped in a gradual slant up to the hole.

Wax crawled up the slope, then cautiously poked his head out. He'd come up in a building, though the roof was gone. The brick walls were mostly intact, and there were four altars in the front, just to Wax's left. An old chapel to the Survivor. It seemed empty.

Wax crawled out of the hole, his Sterrion at the side of his head, coat marred by dirt from below. The clean, dry air smelled good to him.

"Each life is a performance," a voice said, echoing in the ruined church.

Wax immediately ducked to the side, rolling up to an altar.

"But we are not the performers," the voice continued. "We are the puppets."

"Tan," Wax said. "Come out."

"I have seen God, lawkeeper," Tan whispered. Where was he? "I have seen Death himself, with the nails in his eyes. I have seen the Survivor, who is life."

Wax scanned the small chapel. It was cluttered with broken benches and fallen statues. He rounded the side of the altar, judging the sound to come from the back of the room.

"Other men wonder," Tan's voice said, "but I know. I know I'm a puppet. We all are. Did you like my show? I worked so hard to build it."

Wax continued along the building's right wall, his boots leaving a trail in the dust. He breathed shallowly, a line of sweat creeping down his right temple. His eye was twitching. He saw corpses on the walls in his mind's eye.

"Many men never get a chance to create true art," Tan said. "And the best performances are those which can never be reproduced. Months, years, spent preparing. Everything placed right. But at the end of the day, the rotting will begin. I couldn't truly mummify them; I hadn't the time or resources. I could only preserve them long enough to prepare for this one show. Tomorrow, it will be ruined. You were the only one to see it. Only you. I figure . . . we're all just puppets . . . you see . . ."

The voice was coming from the back of the room, near some rubble that was blocking Wax's view.

"Someone else moves us," Tan said.

Wax ducked around the side of the rubble, raising his Sterrion.

Tan stood there, holding Lessie in front of him, her mouth gagged, her eyes wide. Wax froze in place, gun raised. Lessie was bleeding from her leg and her arm. She'd been shot, and her face was growing pale. She'd lost blood. That was how Tan had been able to overpower her.

Wax grew still. He didn't feel anxiety. He couldn't afford to; it might make him shake, and shaking might make him miss. He could see Tan's face behind Lessie; the man held a garrote around her neck.

Tan was a slender, fine-fingered man. He'd been a mortician. Black hair, thinning, worn greased back. A nice suit that now shone with blood.

"Someone else moves us, lawman," Tan said softly.

Lessie met Wax's eyes. They both knew what to do in this situation. Last time, he'd been the one captured. People always tried to use them against one another. In Lessie's opinion, that wasn't a disadvantage. She'd have explained that if Tan hadn't known the two of them were a couple, he'd have killed her right off. Instead, he'd kidnapped her. That gave them a chance to get out.

Wax sighted down the barrel of his Sterrion. He drew in the trigger until he balanced the weight of the sear right on the edge of firing, and Lessie blinked. One. Two. Three.

Wax fired.

In the same instant, Tan yanked Lessie to the right.

The shot broke the air, echoing against clay bricks. Lessie's head jerked back as Wax's bullet took her just above the right eye. Blood sprayed against the clay wall beside her. She crumpled.

Wax stood, frozen, horrified. No . . . that isn't the way . . . it can't . . .

"The best performances," Tan said, smiling and looking down at Lessie's figure, "are those that can only be performed once."

Wax shot him in the head.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 238 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 6, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    brilliant story line

    In the last few decades a steel based technology boom has come to Scadrial. The new Steel Age has led to railroads traversing the surface, electric lights on streets and skyscrapers. At the same time, the ancient magical system of Allomancy, Feruchemy, and Hemalurgy remains potent though more so in the perilous Roughs than in the urban centers.

    For twenty years Waxillium Ladrian has enforced the law in the Rough using his Twinborn skill of deploying Allomancy to Pull metal and employing Feruchemy to change his weight. However, his time in the Rough is over as he must return home to the modern city of Elendel to replace his recently deceased uncle as Lord Ladrian. However, he learns upon coming home that a ruthless gang of thieves the Vanishers are abducting women and stealing cargo from the railcars. His sense of justice and honor has Wax, along with his friend depraved Wayne and genius Marasi, on a mission to rescue the kidnapped and to end the Vanishers reign of robberies.

    The Alloy of Law is a stand alone urban fantasy that occurs in the lands of the Mistborn Trilogy, but in the future three centuries after the heroes of the previous tales are alive only as legends. The brilliant story line can be read without the perusing the trilogy though those who do so will miss out on a fabulous magical fantasy series. The key to this strong action adventure is the emerging competition between magic and technology except when a rare practitioner combines them. Wax and his two compatriots add amusing banter to a brisk High Noon in Mistborn guns and sorcery thriller.

    Harriet Klausner

    19 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2012

    YaWN

    Loved the original trilogy. This seems forced. The endless exvhanges between Wax and Wayne point to massive releases of author ego. Inuendo is fun and charming unless fed in massive amounts. Large koloss are growing on energy expended hoping this would be an engaging story.

    5 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 9, 2011

    Yes, I also pre-ordered it!

    Brandon sanderson, gods gift to fantasy readers!

    4 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 29, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Yes I pre-ordered this

    Because its awesome.

    4 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 1, 2012

    Still love Sanderson.

    I am a huge fan of Brandon Sanderson's books and the original trilogy was outstanding! As interesting as it was to see this world move on and follow someone else, this book really felt forced. The writing is still wonderful and the book was enjoyable, but why was it even written? The trilogy ended beautifully and this just feels like an uneeded sequel. Still a good short read, but this is the only book by Sanderson that I have felt dissapointment of.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 13, 2012

    It was a good book. A quick read & you don't have to read th

    It was a good book. A quick read & you don't have to read the prior series as it can stand alone. My biggest problem was that I got the "free" prequel & then paid 12 bucks to get the last few chapters & the book was only 279pgs so I felt cheated. For 12 bucks I was expecting a 500ish pg book. While it did have a few twists & turns it wasn't as good as the majority of his other books are.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 22, 2011

    Excellent

    Takes a justice bound sherlock with powers and matches him with impossible odds- all the time with good humor and character development.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 11, 2011

    A great stand alone book but a little short

    This was a great book with a lot of excitement and a great western/steam-age feel. If you haven't read the previous books that's all right this book is a fresh start for a new series. Some of the pictures are hard to read on the nook version, which is kind of important for the full feel of the story. Also I wish the book was a little longer, only 200 or so pages.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 17, 2011

    More Please.

    For some reason this book reminds me of Firefly/Serenity. Loved it :)

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2011

    Promises to be another great Sanderson novel!

    From the preview, starts slow but picks up quickly, as typical with his books. Just push yourself through the first ten minutes, you will be glad you did. Undoubtedly one of the best fantasy fiction writers yet.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 15, 2013

    Not Sanderson's best novel but it is a fun and quick read. The

    Not Sanderson's best novel but it is a fun and quick read.
    The plot is acceptable and the characters are somewhat interesting, but seem borrowed from other Sanderson novels. The action sequences in this novel get a little tired and comic.
    What makes this book worth reading is that Sanderson is a good storyteller but the original Mistborn novels where significantly better.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 4, 2011

    Feels nice to return to the lands of the mistborn

    My favorite parts of the Mistborn trilogy were the well done action sequences, and Alloy of Law did not disappoint on that measure one bit. The evolution of religion in the intervening years between Hero of Ages and this fourth Mistborn book was super interesting for me as well. Can't wait to read another book involving Wax and Wayne(nice character pun there, Mr. Sanderson). Feels complete, yet more to come is exposed in Epilogue. Recommend to any who enjoyed the Mistborn trilogy, and also as a first book in the series to those who may not like fantasy but love steampunk. Will be letting the ten year old read for that reason, and because while there is acknowledgment that men and women interact and love each other, the book is neither too sexy, not too gory.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 30, 2011

    A book Mistborn fans will enjoy.

    You don't have to read the previous books to read this one. There is a character that appears at the end of the book that is from the original trilogy who is supposed to be dead. I'm interested in seeing where that story line goes so I'll probably be reading the next one. Even though I liked this book, I liked the original trilogy more.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 28, 2014

    Nice little spin-off

    If you're looking for another novel of epic, Mistborn-sized proportions, then you've come to the wrong place. However, this quick read (or at least quick compared to the first three) is a nice, contained story that introduces some cool new powers and concepts that any Mistborn fan will eat up. It has kept me satisfied as I wait for the next trilogy in the Scadrial world...

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  • Posted April 11, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Just wasn't for me. Did I enjoy this book: It was everything I

    Just wasn't for me.

    Did I enjoy this book: It was everything I loved about the Mistborn Trilogy, but set, unfortunately, in some sort of post-Vin-and-Elend Wild West.  I like Wax and his crew, but I’m not really a fan of gun fights, train robberies, or the classic “Bad Guy Kidnapping Girls for Use in His Evil Scheme” bit.  I suppose it’s an interesting Metallurgic version of the Old West, but it just wasn’t for me.




    I’m contemplating the pros and cons of continuing the series.




    Would I recommend it: Actually, yes.  Especially if you’ve read the Mistborn Trilogy, would you pretty please read this one and get back to me?  I can’t possibly be the only one who loved the first three books and didn’t really care for this one, can I?




    As reviewed by Melissa at Every Free Chance Book Reviews.

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  • Posted February 28, 2014

    Very good...ties into the world of the Mistborn

    I really liked. This book. It has several nods to the Mistborn books, but this one can stand on its own. I highly recommend it if you liked the Mistborn books.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 13, 2014

    Not bad

    If you liked the mistborn series you'll enjoy this book. He did a god job of moving the series into a new era i would say.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2014

    An OK read

    Not anywhere as interesting or deep as the Mistborn series. The book had a bit of a caper feel to it.

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  • Posted November 22, 2013

    If you liked the Mistborn Trilogy, You will like this addition!

    Set three hundred years after the events in the Trilogy, this books follows Waxillium Ladrian as he tries to untangle the problems associated with a family empire that has fallen into direpair through neglect. His. Electricity runs the lights and businesses in Elendel, but allomancy is still alive and well, with a few surprises. A must read for Sanderson fans!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2013

    Another awesome Sanderson novel

    This one took me a bit longer to get into it but midway through it becomes very action packed. I think the lack of Mistborn also kind of threw me but he really does an amazing job making the mistings diverse and interesting.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 238 Customer Reviews

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