Vin and Elend have to pick up the pieces of the Lord Ruler’s empire. As Elend struggles to become a just ruler, Vin struggles to protect him and find her place in the world. This book focuses more than the last on Vin and her struggles to come to peace with who she is as a person.
I didn’t enjoy this as much as the first novel, although it was still incredibly entertaining. I thought a lot of the conflict was the result of Vin’s teen and hero angst. Although I don’t deny that it is true to life, it all felt a little whiny to me. What I really loved about this book was the further elaboration about the world, allomancy, and other denizens of the world. We get to learn about about the Kandra and the Terrispeople, more about what is going on in the world and what the Lord Ruler had been doing with his power, and more about Vin’s powers and what is possible in allomancy.
My favorite scene is the part in the beginning where Sazed and Marsh enter an abandoned stronghold of the steel inquisitors. My least favorite scenes involve Vin’s interactions with Zane, which seemed self indulgent and whiny and just didn’t agree with me.
Overall this was the typical kind of filler, or middle book of a series, that progresses the story but doesn’t close any major plot arcs and even opens up a few more.