Words of Radiance Groupread, Week 1

Words of Radiance Groupread
This post is a couple days late because I’ve been out enjoying the weather.  Generally during the spring I don’t get to spend any time outdoors because of extreme allergies, but this year the extreme weather seems to have delayed the worst of the pollen.  It’s so nice to be able to frolic in the sunshine!


Words of Radiance Groupread


For those of you just joining in, here’s the schedule.  Let me know if you want to get on the list to receive the questions via e-mail.  This week’s questions were written by Musings on Fantasia.

Week 1 – April 2nd – Prologue – Chapter 8 (110 Pages) – Musings on Fantasia
Week 2 – April 9th – Chapters 9-15 (105 Pages) – Over The Effing Rainbow
Week 3 – April 16 – Chapters 16-28 (112 Pages) – Stainless Steel Droppings
Week 4 – April 23rd – Chapters 29-39 (111 Pages) – Dab of Darkness
Week 5 – April 30th – Chapters 40-48 (107 Pages) – Coffee, Cookies & Chili Peppers
Week 6 – May 7th – Chapters 49-57 (110 Pages) – Lynn’s Book Blog
Week 7 – May 14th – Chapters 58-65 (102 Pages) – Over The Effing Rainbow
Week 8 – May 21st – Chapters 14 66-74 (104 Pages) – Books Without Any Pictures
Week 9 – May 28th – Chapters 75-81 (103 Pages) – Musings on Fantasia
Week 10 – June 4th – Chapters 82-END (94 Pages) – Coffee, Cookies & Chili Peppers


A long time ago, back in the dark ages (by which I mean 2011), I participated in a readalong of The Way of Kings.  My boyfriend joined me in reading along, and we both discovered that Brandon Sanderson is a badass.  Mike has agreed to join me for the Words of Radiance readalong as well, as we’re both incredibly excited to continue the series.


We basically get the same prologue from the first book except from Jasnah’s POV. She tells Gangnah that her father’s assassin walked on the wall, and it’s ignored. We also see the Parshman leaders immediately take credit for the assassin. What did you make of it all? Insights? Impressions? How will this affect the story going forward?

Grace:  I was glad to see something we already knew about happen in the prologue, but from a different point of view.  It’s been several years since I read The Way of Kings, and to be honest, my memory is not quite as fresh as it could be.

Mike:  Honestly I felt like it was a bit long, but otherwise pretty good.  The perspective we saw it from last time was more interesting, and probably the best way of looking at it.  What I think was important wasn’t the assassination itself, but the magical land of beads that sometimes want to be an object and sometimes don’t.  If you can’t handle the beads, you’ll drown in them.

Grace:  The beads were very trippy, but I also thought the Parshman taking credit was interesting.  During most of The Way of Kings, we only experienced the Parshmen as enemies or passive slaves.  This shows them in a completely different light.

Mike:  I don’t think they had anything to do with the assassination.  They decided to take credit for it as part of a conspiracy.

Andolin and Shallan are unofficially engaged. How do you see this relationship panning out?

Mike:  Well, I wanted Jasnah and Kaladin to hook up, so whatever.  I hope the Andolin and Shallan thing pans out.

Grace:  Shallan doesn’t seem to be the marrying type.  She’s too independent and scholarly.  Then again, you never know.  She seems open to the idea, at least.

Mike:  Ha, wrong!  Go back and re-read that first book.  I think you’re confusing Shallan with Jasnah.  This is the woman who wanted to study under Jasnah but was convinced by her brothers to go halfway across the world to steal her shit.

Grace:  Exactly.  If he comes between her and her obligation to her family, I don’t see things ending well.

Mike:  That’s nonsense.  If anything, her brothers will be dead!

Grace:  And good riddance.  Assholes.

Mike:  There was only one sadistic one and the rest were just pathetic.

Grace:  It would still be nice to see her outside their influence.

Mike:  I still think you’re wrong and you’re just trying to project Jasnah onto Shallan.

Kaladin wants to keep his Radiant powers a secret for as long as possible. How successful do you think he’ll be? How long will he remain hidden? Do you think he’ll succeed in training the thousand?

Grace:  There’s no way he’s keeping his powers secret.  He already isn’t very good at it.  Case in point: even tattoos won’t stick to him.

Mike:  “Your tattoos won’t stick.  Gah, I guess he’s a Knight Radiant.  Get him!”  That’s ridiculous.

Grace:  It’s not just one thing though but a lot of little things piling up.  People who see him and interact with him enough will get suspicious that something strange is going on.  And with Dalinar rambling about his dreams, the Knights Radiant are gonna be on everyone’s mind very soon.

Mike:  Yeah, but he’s a darkeyes.  Nobody’s gonna think he’s important at all.  He just has to not suck on Stormlight and he’s good.

Grace:  The folks from Bridge Four will know, and the thousand will soon find out.  Surely there’s at least one of them that might out him.

Mike:  No, all of Bridge Four loves him, and he’s not gonna tell the other bridges.  And as for training them, he’ll be successful.  It’s not hard to train men.  You appoint officers then make them train other people.  He’s already got Bridge Four, so it’ll be easy.

Jasnah thinks Shallan’s spren is a Cryptic, as opposed to an Honorspren which is what Syl is. What do you think is the significance of this? What does it mean for Shallan? For Kaladin?

Mike:  They just have different powers, that’s all it means.

Grace:  Although I think it’s ironic that Shallan gets a “liespren” after that stunt she pulled on Jasnah.  Although, it’s interesting to see that Shallan, Jasnah, and Kaladin all had different kinds of spren.  It shows that world is changing, and fast.

How will Kaladin accomplish all of the tasks Dalinar has laid on him? Do you think Dalinar’s plan with the duels will work to stave off civil war and help unite the high princes?

Grace:  I think the duels working is a pipe dream.  Dalinar’s an idealist, and people have become so corrupted that they’re not going to listen to him even if he promises miracles.  However, I envision him earning a lot of respect from the people in the camp who have very little power, and that might mean something when shit hits the fan.

Mike:  Those duels are gonna be very interesting for everyone, even people you don’t suspect.  More than likely the duels alone won’t cut it, but it will have an effect.  If you lose all your Shardplate to the crazy dude’s son, you’re getting your wings clipped and are gonna have to listen to him cause he has all the winning cards.  If anyone went to war with him, he would have the majority of the shards.

After the incident with the ship, do you think Jasnah is truly dead? Predictions?

Mike:  No comment.

Grace:  She’s dead, Jim.

What are your first thoughts/impressions of Pattern? How do you see his and Shallan’s relationship developing?

Grace:  He’s such a cute little terrifying mathematical symbol.  I’m a fan.

Mike:  He’s like a little kid.  He’s got an understanding of concepts, but has a very literal sense of the world, so when Shallan relays a human concept to him he’s like “Wait, what?  That doesn’t make sense.  That’s a lie.”  I also like that “mmm” thing he does in the middle of a sentence.

Grace:  This further reinforces the fact that I want a spren too!

Mike:  Just make a baby and genetically alter it to give you superpowers, and bam, there’s your spren!


Grace:  See everyone next week for…

Mike:  No, what are you doing?!  You have to conclude!  You can’t just end.

Grace:  Well I just did.  The end.


8 thoughts on “Words of Radiance Groupread, Week 1

  1. It is so awesome you two are doing the read along together. I wish I could get my man to do something similar. We read many of the same books….and in fact, he as already finished this book.

    Haha! You guys are too funny. Yeah, I think Shallan will protect her family obligation first, at least until the asshole nature of her brother(s) is revealed in living color.

    At what point do the other Highlords unite against Dalinar because his family has taken too many Shards? We already know that Szeth is tasked with killing Dalinar…..but this dueling plan may just make him more enemies.

    LOL! Yeha, just make a baby and genetically modify it to have super powers, or give you super powers. Uh huh….OK. Who has a basement lab set up for that? And what about the magical component to the spren?

    1. Hmm… well, if Szeth tries to kill Dalinar and ends up running into Kaladin, that could be an epic battle.

      I’m hoping there’s some kind of reveal where Shallan will be forced to choose between her brothers and what she believes in. Or maybe she can get rid of the asshole one and then the others can be redeemed.

      And if I had the power to grant myself superpowers, I’d have the power to make Sanderson novels come out instantly without having to wait in between. Although supposedly book three will be out in 18 months, so there’s that. *searches for secret lab* 🙂

  2. I love the interaction! I can see you two arguing over dinner, in a friendly way of course. The tattoo thing was funny to me. I can’t imagine going through the pain (I have five and not places hurt) and then watching it melt.

    I wasn’t a big fan of the dual bit and I have a feeling it’s going to backfire. But that’s why we read right–kinda like watching a trainwreck. You know it’s bad, but can’t look away.

    And I don’t see Shallan and Andolin getting along that well. I do think her family obligations will interfere. I loved Mike’s answer–the rest were just pathetic.

    I’m with you Grace. It was a while since I read the first one, so I don’t remember as much as I wanted to. These discussions are helping.

    Have a great weekend. Hope the nice weather stays and that the pollen doesn’t appear anytime soon.

    1. I have a deathly fear of needles, so the tattoo thing further reminded me just how much of a badass Kaladin can be. Although, at the same time, he’s had a lot of pain and suffering in his life and the tattoo must pale by comparison.

      The discussions are helping me remember what I’ve forgotten too. I’m thinking I might go back through and re-read my WoK discussion posts and see if that helps.

        1. Mike and I both reread the posts from book one last night, and they left us with more questions than answers. 😛

  3. Haha. This is too cool – having your little mini arguments/discussions together with this readalong.
    Okay, so who’m I agreeing with what about.
    I think Shallan didn’t seem overly bothered about getting married. I think she would do it and didn’t seem overly concerned.
    I kind of think Kaladin could keep his secret if he really tried. However, what’s probably most likely to give it away is him rushing into the fray to rescue somebody and shining like a beacon! That could give him away a tiny bit. His honour will get the better of him.
    I think that they’re attracting spren based on their character. I don’t think it’s for nothing that Shallan has a cryptic – like Grace says, after the stunt she pulled with Jasnah. And Kaladin, of course, has a very rare honourspren which is totally fitting.
    The duels, I was surprised about. Just didn’t see that coming at all. Not sure how it will work out. Partly you can’t imaging more than the first few falling for it?? Come on Andolin, kick Sadeas’s ass!
    Jasnah. I’m probably going to be so wrong here but I just didn’t find that scene really credible. I know how the next chapter starts but when the body is found them I might sit up and take notice. otherwise that whole episode was very unSanderson like plus I just don’t get why he would kill Jasnah off at this point?
    Pattern – it’s going to be interesting to see him develop.
    Come on Grace – end this thing!!! Oh, you did.

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