Legion by Brandon Sanderson

Book Review

Book Review of Legion: 2 Treasure Boxes
Publisher: Audible Frontiers, Listening Length: 2 hours and 8 minutes (88 pages), ASIN: B009KEZ6F6

Stephen Leeds is insane, but he is also a genius. He specializes in solving the unsolvable and now he is needed to find a stolen camera that can take pictures of the past.

Brandon Sanderson has written numerous books and series in the fantasy genre including the Mistborn Series, the Alcatraz Series, The Stormlight Archive series, several stand alone novels and he completed the last three books in the Wheel of Time series working with Robert Jordan’s notes. Legion is a novella and it is also in a completely different genre, primarily crime drama but with a twist. The main protagonist, Stephen Leeds, is a genius, but the only way he can access his mental abilities is through hallucinations. He creates numerous aspects of himself that he communicates with to help him solve mysteries. The story is told in a first person narrative strictly from Stephen’s point of view, excluding any of his aspects. Instead the thoughts of these other personae are only shared through their conversation with Stephen.

The cover is awesome and it says it all; it shows a black and white faceless Stephen with silhouettes of his different personae trailing him. The story was intriguing from the first line where Stephen claims he is quite sane, but his hallucinations are all mad. Stephen’s genius is fragmented, and he can only access it through the different personalities that he has created. He treats each aspect of his personality like a real person and each has their own bedroom in his large mansion, (representing his mind) although no one else can see them. This story addresses several themes including mental illness, the fragility of faith, the self-serving needs of terrorist groups and the potential for harm that spring from new technologies.

The story introduces an interesting new concept, and begs the question, what if a picture could be taken of any place or event in the past? What potential damage could this cause? Conversely what potential good could it cause?

Legion is a standalone novella that immediately grabs the reader’s interest and then quickly builds up steam with plenty of action. The ending is satisfying and plausible. I recommend this novella as a good quick read, and it is only 88 pages. I am hoping Mr. Sanderson will create some new cases for Stephen and crew in the future.

Question to Ponder:

If you could take a picture of a any past event, what would you like to take a picture of?

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2 thoughts on “Legion by Brandon Sanderson”

  1. this sounds wonderful, especially since I’m not sure if I’m ready for Sanderson’s doorstopper fantasy novels. I’ve read a little bit of his short fiction and liked it.

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