Calamity - Brandon Sanderson

Failure is refusing to fight. Failure is remaining quiet and hoping someone else will fix the problem.

~ Spoilers for Firefight ~

Calamity is the third (or fourth, if you count Mitosis) and final book of The Reckoners series, written by Brandon Sanderson. The book was first published in 2016, following its predecessors, Steelheart and Firefight. The story continues after the end of the second book where "Professor" Jonathan Phaedrus was finally corrupted by his own power while trying to save Babylon Restored from an explosion that is a part of Regalia's plan. The remaining Reckoners, led by David, now must have a plan, not only for turning their former leader back to normal but also for killing Calamity, a mysterious event that had birthed Epics decade ago, which turns out to be an Epic himself.

I have conflicted feelings about this book. On one hand, this book is formulated with the same recipe as the previous two books, which I enjoy. A mix of serious and fun silly elements. A bunch of preparations and meetings, balanced with explosive and fast-paced actions. One by one, mysteries are revealed, slowly inching toward the final revelation that's been set up since the first book. The final villain twist certainly worked on me. I didn't see that one coming, although it's kinda obvious when I think about it again. Generally, the story feels somewhat satisfying to me.

On the other hand, however, I have a problem with how some things are (not) resolved. Megan's Epic power, to tamper with alternate dimensions, is the biggest annoyance to me. It lacks any logical explanations, is probably the best way I can put it. While in stories sometimes it's best to leave things for the reader's imaginations, it just feels wrong somehow. It's too convenient and we're just supposed to accept it because of infinite possibilities or whatever. And unfortunately, Megan's power is like a jelly made to glue two pieces of wood together. You see, it makes sense. Everyone likes jelly, right. It's squishy and tastes like a dozen spoonful of sugar in your tongue. Just like Megan's power which is very cool to see in actions. But, no matter how sticky jellies are, they just don't work to put two pieces of wood into one. The same way Megan's power can't be used to stick two pieces of important plot points together. What you end up with is a colorful mess in your living room. Or in this book's case, a supposedly important plot device that feels right at first, but doesn't really make sense after you think about it afterwhile.

Okay, that was actually fun to write. I need to try it at least once lol.

Anyway, it's been a fun ride from Steelheart to Calamity. I feel like some efforts the author had made to make a full circle with this final book didn't really work that well. But, it's not that bad of an effort. So, I still recommend reading this series for those who are interested.

Brandon Sanderson
First Published
February 16, 2016