In this third volume of the Skyward series, Spensa and M-Bot are stuck in the Nowhere, off on an adventure to learn more about 1) the creatures that want to destroy them, and 2) the nature of their selves.
I’ve enjoyed this series immensely so far. The first third of this book was a bit dragging. For those who have read Harry Potter, it’s a bit like the early parts of the seventh book, when the trio just wander from place to place to place. There’s a lot of that here, a bit of pointless “questing” that doesn’t move the story along much. (Knowing Sanderson, though, there’s probably something important hidden in there that I missed completely!) I was glad when we finally got past that part and into something more evenly paced. Another odd thing for this go-around: I actually guessed a few of the mysteries in advance! That almost never happens with Sanderson. He’s too good at being extremely un-subtle and yet fooling everyone, heh.
There’s a fourth volume of this series that hopefully will release in 2022, and I’m looking forward to reading that conclusion. There’s also a series of three novellas that have come out (or are soon to release) set in this world, and they are top on my list for early 2022! The Skyward series isn’t part of the greater Cosmere universe of Sanderson’s novels. It’s nice to have a break from the larger picture while reading his work sometimes. Plus, since this one is set in a universe that includes “old earth,” you get some of the best lines, like:
“And then, the evil member of the Lion Clan grinned a terrible grin. ‘No, Simba,’ he said. ‘It was not mere chance that your father fell to his fate, but it was I who cast him to it! I killed him so that I might have his throne, just as I will now kill you!'”
I sure hope I survived, because Gran-Gran really needed to add this story to her repertoire. Children in the future were going to insist my adventures were too outlandish – and therefore I wasn’t an actual historical person, but one that was obviously made up, like Gilgamesh or David Bowie.
I actually laughed my way through quite a few places in this one, particularly when Hesho, the overly-philosophic kitsen emperor, reappears:
“Just so you all know,” [redacted] said, “I’m secretly a monster from outside space and time.”
“Ah yes,” Hesho said. “Deep inside, aren’t we all monsters?”
This is such a fun series, and I’m really glad to end 2021’s reads with this audiobook. Just as with the last book, Suzy Jackson narrates the audio, and does a phenomenal job.