Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson is yet another dystopian tale, but what set it apart from all the others is the addition of superpowers. That's right: laser beam eyes, invisibility, and the ability to have impervious skin like steel. How could a world with all these superpowered, Epic beings be a dystopia, you ask? Won't they help police the world like the Avengers or the X-Men? Well, these superpowered Epics don't follow the old Spiderman credo, "with great power comes great responsibility," but rather “power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
An Orphan With a Goal
David lives in the former Chicago, ruled by the epic Steelheart. All the people want to do is keep on living and working, even if it means eking out their lives in the shadow of the merciless Steelheart and the constant fear of dying under his hand. All David wants to do is kill Steelheart, the one Epic who is said to be invulnerable, and avenge his father. To do so, he'll have to ally with the Reckoners, the only people who haven't submitted to the Epics' rule.
This was a great read and while at times I rolled my eyes at David's narration (he has a love of corny metaphors), it was gripping and I loved the familiar and yet changed dystopian Chicago. The action really picks up midway and I frantically flew through the book wanting to know what would happen. And then I immediately reread it, because I hadn't seen the plot twist coming. The technology felt almost steampunkish, which is also a cool detail. Similarly, the characters and their relationships were also entertaining and fit in well with their dystopian setting.
I can't wait for the second book in the series, Firefight, which is due to be released in Fall 2014. But perhaps I'll try some more of Sanderson's books while I wait.
Jenna V. originally was wary of Brandon Sanderson due to the whole A Memory of Light thing, but now wants more Sanderson!