Mistborn series is one of the best fantasy series you can read if you are starting your book-reading journey; even if you are a bibliophile, it’s a book series you shouldn’t miss. That’s why I created this beginner’s guide on reading Mistborn series in order to get the most out of it!
The Mistborn series is a popular epic fantasy series written by American author Brandon Sanderson. The series comprises two sets of books, the original trilogy and a second series that takes place 300 years later. And it’s not the end because there are still two more sets planned that the author will be releasing in the future.
The first trilogy, known as ‘Mistborn Era 1,’ includes Mistborn: The Final Empire, The Well of Ascension, and The Hero of Ages. The second series, known as ‘Mistborn Era 2,’ includes The Alloy of Law, Shadows of Self, The Bands of Mourning, and The Lost Metal.
The series takes place in a world where magic is real and follows the story of a group of people who can use metals to gain special abilities.
Brandon Sanderson is a well-known author in the fantasy genre, having written several other popular series, including The Stormlight Archive and The Reckoners. He is known for his intricate world-building, complex but unique magic systems, and memorable characters. The Mistborn series is no exception, with its richly detailed world and intricate magic system that has captivated readers around the world.
The Mistborn series is a must-read whether you are a seasoned fantasy reader or new to the genre. Its engaging characters, intricate plot, and unique magic system will surely keep you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. So, let’s see how you can get started with the Mistborn series!
Beginner’s Guide to Mistborn Series
The Mistborn series is set in a world where some people, known as Allomancers, can use magic by ingesting and “burning” certain metals, known as allomantic metals, to enhance their physical and mental abilities. Mostly, these allomancers can only burn one kind of metal, and they are known as “Mistings.”
However, certain special individuals can burn all the allomantic metals, and these allomancers are known as “Mistborn.” However they are a rare breed, but they are extremely powerful.
The Mistborn series is divided into two eras, with a novella set in between them. There is also a planned third era and a fourth era that will be released in the near future.
Mistborn Era 1
The first era of the Mistborn series consists of a trilogy of books, along with a novella, which are as follows:
- Mistborn: The Final Empire (2006)
- The Well of Ascension (2007)
- The Hero of Ages (2008)
- Secret History (2016) – A Novella
These books follow the story of a young thief named Vin, who discovers that she is a Mistborn – a person who has the ability to use all the allomantic metals that grant superhuman powers. She becomes involved in a rebellion against the Lord Ruler, the tyrant who has ruled the world for a thousand years.
The first era of the Mistborn series has a dark and gritty tone, with themes of oppression, rebellion, and sacrifice. The characters are complex and well-developed, with their own motivations and flaws. The magic system is unique and well-explained, with clear rules and limitations, and these rules and limitations are followed throughout the series.
Mistborn Era 2
The second era of the Mistborn series is set several hundred years after the events of the first era. It consists of four books:
This era follows the adventures of a new cast of characters, including Waxillium Ladrian, a lawman who can use both allomancy and technology.
The second era of the Mistborn series has a more lighthearted tone than the first, with elements of steampunk and detective fiction. The magic system has evolved since the first era, with new metals and abilities introduced. The characters are still complex and well-developed but with a more humorous and adventurous edge.
Mistborn Era 3 & 4
The author, Brandon Sanderson, has announced that there will be a third era of the Mistborn series, set even further in the future than the second era, probably a couple of decades to a century further than the second one. This era will feature a new cast, with a few returning characters, and explore new aspects of the world and the magic system.
And then there will also be a fourth era that will be set even further in the future. This final Mistborn trilogy will be a space opera!
Details about the upcoming eras are still scarce, but fans of the series are eagerly anticipating its release.
How to Read Mistborn Series in Order?
If you plan to read the Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson, it’s important to know the correct order to read the books. In this section, we’ll describe the order in which you should read the books and provide a brief overview of each book.
The Final Empire is the first book in the Mistborn series, written by Brandon Sanderson. It is set in a world where the Lord Ruler has ruled for over a thousand years, using his immense power to oppress the people and maintain his grip on power.
The story follows a young street urchin named Vin, who discovers she has the power to use Allomancy, a magic system that allows her to manipulate metals.
Vin is recruited by a group of rebels who seek to overthrow Lord Ruler and end his tyranny. The rebels are led by Kelsier, a charismatic and skilled Allomancer who has his own reasons for wanting to bring down the Lord Ruler. Together, Vin and Kelsier work to gather allies and plan their attack on the Lord Ruler’s stronghold, the impenetrable city of Luthadel.
As they prepare for their mission, Vin learns to harness her powers and becomes a key player in the rebellion. She also discovers secrets about her past and true identity, which significantly impact the story.
Throughout the book, Sanderson weaves together a complex plot full of political intrigue, action, and magic. The characters are well-developed, and the world-building is immersive, with a detailed magic system and a rich history that adds depth to the story.
Overall, The Final Empire is an engaging and thrilling start to the Mistborn series, with a satisfying conclusion that sets the stage for the next book.
The second book in the Mistborn series, The Well of Ascension, continues the story of Vin and the rest of the crew as they try to save the world of Scadrial from the Lord Ruler’s former minions. The book begins with the crew trying to establish a new government in Luthadel, but things quickly become complicated when a new enemy appears, threatening to destroy everything they’ve worked for.
As Vin struggles to control her newfound powers and deal with the consequences of her actions in the previous book, she also must navigate the complex political landscape of Luthadel.
Meanwhile, Elend Venture, the former nobleman turned revolutionary, must decide whether to pursue his dreams of a free society or to sacrifice everything to save the city from destruction.
The Well of Ascension is a thrilling continuation of the Mistborn series, with intricate world-building, complex characters, plenty of action and intrigue, and a lot of political warfare.
The third and final book in the first era of the Mistborn series, The Hero of Ages, brings the epic story to a close. The book continues the story of Vin and Elend as they try to save their world from destruction. The Lord Ruler is dead, but even though he was a tyrant, he was the one who kept a dangerous foe trapped.
With his death, a deadly force is unleashed that threatens to destroy everything, and Vin is caught in the crosshairs because she is the one who basically freed this terrible foe!
The book is filled with action, suspense, and drama. The characters are pushed to their limits as they try to find a way to stop the force that is destroying their world. The stakes are high, and the tension is palpable.
One of the strengths of The Hero of Ages is the way it ties up all the loose ends from the previous books. The plot is complex and intricate, but everything comes together in a satisfying way. The book also delves deeper into the world’s magic system, revealing new secrets and mysteries that will affect not just future books but also other stories set in the Cosmere universe.
3.5. Secret History (A Novella)
In Secret History, Brandon Sanderson takes readers on a journey through the Cosmere, the universe in which the Mistborn series takes place. Do not read this novella before you have read the first three books because it has major spoilers, and you wouldn’t understand what is happening unless you’ve read the Era 1 trilogy.
The story begins with a familiar character awakening in a strange, otherworldly realm called the Cognitive Realm. Here, they discover they have been given a new purpose – to investigate the mysterious force known as ‘Investiture’ and its effects on the Cosmere.
Throughout the novella, we are given a tour of the events of The Well of Ascension and The Hero of Ages through this character’s point of view and how their actions helped throughout the story.
This character also learns about the origins of Allomancy, among other things, and uncovers secrets that have been hidden for centuries.
Secret History provides readers with a deeper understanding of the Cosmere and its inner workings. This novella is a must-read for fans of the Mistborn series and anyone interested in the larger Cosmere universe.
The Alloy of Law is the fourth book in the Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson and the first book in Era 2. It is also known as the “Wax and Wayne Series,” as those are the names of the two main characters.
The book is set in a different time period than the original trilogy, taking place 300 years after the events of the first three books. The book is a mix of Western and fantasy genres, with a focus on gunslingers and lawmen in a world where magic and technology are starting to merge.
The story follows the adventures of Waxillium Ladrian, a nobleman from the city of Elendel who has returned to his family’s estate after spending several years in the Roughs, a lawless frontier region. Wax is a Twinborn, meaning he has both Allomantic and Feruchemical abilities. He uses these powers to fight crime and bring justice to the Roughs, along with his sidekick Wayne, a rogue with a talent for disguises.
The Alloy of Law introduces new characters and concepts to the Mistborn universe while still maintaining the familiar magic system and world-building that fans of the series have come to love. It also sets the stage for future books in the series, with hints of a larger conflict brewing in the background.
In this second book of the Wax and Wayne series, Brandon Sanderson takes readers on another thrilling adventure through the world of Scadrial. The story picks up a year after the events of The Alloy of Law, and our protagonists, Wax and Wayne, face a new threat to the city of Elendel.
The plot of Shadows of Self revolves around the mysterious murders of several influential people in the city, including Wax’s uncle. The clues suggest that the killer is a mythical figure who acts from the shadows, but catching this figure won’t be an easy task.
The investigation leads Wax and Wayne to discover a conspiracy that threatens to destabilize the entire city. Along the way, they encounter new allies, enemies, and new forms of Allomancy and Feruchemy.
One of the strengths of Shadows of Self is the character development of Wax and Wayne. Readers get to see more of their personalities and motivations and their relationships with each other and the people around them. The author also introduces several new characters with unique quirks and backstories.
The Bands of Mourning is the third book in the Era 2 of the Mistborn series, written by Brandon Sanderson. The story follows Waxillium Ladrian, a lawman and Twinborn, as he investigates the mysterious Bands of Mourning, a mythical artifact belonging to the Lord Ruler that is said to grant immense power to those who possess it.
Throughout the book, Wax and his team encounter various obstacles and enemies, including the Set, a secret organization that seeks to control the Bands for their nefarious purposes. Along the way, they also uncover the truth about the Lord Ruler and the origins of the magic system in the Mistborn universe.
One of the highlights of The Bands of Mourning is the development of Wax’s character as he struggles to come to terms with his past and his place in the world.
The book also features several exciting action sequences and some surprising twists and turns that will keep readers on the edge of their seats and prepare them for the final book of Era 2.
The Lost Metal is the fourth and final book in the “Wax and Wayne” series of the Mistborn books by Brandon Sanderson. The book was released very recently, on November 15, 2022, and it is one of the most important books, not only in the Mistborn series but for Cosmere as a whole.
The book pits Wax, Wayne, and Marasi against the shadowy organization, the Set, who has been kidnapping people with allomantic abilities. They also discover that even though Scadrial’s God is Harmony, the Set worships another god, Trell, and they have a new type of explosive that can wreak unprecedented destruction on the world.
But that’s not all that The Lost Metal has to offer because new characters show up, characters from different worlds in the Cosmere, and things come to a shattering conclusion that will leave you wanting more.
In conclusion, the Mistborn series is a must-read for any fantasy fan. The series is a perfect blend of intricate world-building, compelling characters, and a unique magic system that will keep readers engaged from start to finish.
When you start reading, make sure you read the Mistborn series in the order I suggested above. If you read any book out of order, you will not understand what’s happening and also spoil yourself with some pretty epic revelations.
Read the Era 1 trilogy first, followed by the Secret History novella, and then the Era 2, which is the Wax and Wayne series.
Overall, the Mistborn series is a fantastic entry point into Brandon Sanderson’s Cosmere universe. With its engaging characters, intricate world-building, and unique magic system, readers will be hooked from start to finish. So, whether you’re a seasoned fantasy reader or new to the genre, the Mistborn series is definitely worth checking out.
Also Read: Throne of Glass Series in Order