Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Black Prism

The Black Prism is the new book by Brent Weeks and it received a good amount of hype from Orbit Books.  It is a very good book and has me excited for the next one in the series.  The series is about magicians called drafters who can create a substance (luxin) out of light.

The story focuses on a few characters, but the most compelling is Gavin Guile (sorry, there will be spoilers from here).  He is the Prism.  The only person who can create any luxin out of all the colors.  He is the most powerful man in the world and we learn early on that he fought a war against his own brother, Dazen. 

Early in the book, we realize that Gavin is a pretty good guy, minus the prisoner he keeps under his castle.  Midway through the book he goes to see the prisoner and we learn that Gavin is not Gavin, he is instead Dazen!  He won the war and the battle with his brother, but realized if he emerged as the winner, people might not follow.  So, he pretended to be his brother, for years.

The more you learn about the two characters, you get the idea that the real Gavin deserved to get shoved into his prison (at first you really want him to escape).  The other really cool thing about this whole thing is that the other main character, Kip.  He is Gavin's son (the real Gavin), yet Dazen (pretending to be Gavin) claims him as his own and treats him like a son (which we learn multiple times that Gavin would not do).  Unfortunately at the end of the book, Kip finds a note from his mother that says Gavin Guile raped her and that the knife she gave him can kill the Prism.  Sadly, Dazen did not rape the woman.  How long until Dazen must tell Kip?

Another cool thing, Kip seems to actually be the next Prism.  He can draft multiple colors (I wonder if it will end up that everyone can draft multiple colors they just do not learn correctly?) and he passes all the tests just like Dazen did.

I also love the problem with the Chromeria being a bunch of jerks who are controlling the drafters.  If Lord Omnichrome is correct, then when people break their halo, maybe they are not as evil as people believe.  It definitely seems like the Chromeria has an agenda (I love that Dazen does not really believe in the god they all worship, even though he is supposed to be the most holy person)...

I think after the next book I will try to do a casting call like I have done before.

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