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Amadan na Briona

Currently reading

Inherent Vice
Thomas Pynchon, Ron McLarty
The Best Horror of the Year Volume Five
Ellen Datlow, Laird Barron, Conrad Williams, Ramsey Campbell
Locus Solus (Alma Classics)
Raymond Roussel
Blackout (Newsflesh Trilogy, #3)
Mira Grant, Paula Christensen, Michael Goldstrom
Legion - Brandon Sanderson,  Oliver Wyman I am not sure how to describe the allure of Brandon Sanderson, as I think he's actually a pretty mediocre writer. The only thing of his I've really loved was The Way of Kings and parts of the Mistborn trilogy. Everything else has ranged from "Meh" to "Bleh."

But this novella (a free download from Audible) was on the more positive side of "Meh." The protagonist hallucinates imaginary personas - not Multiple Personality Disorder, as he explains several times, since he does not become them. He just hallucinates them. And listens to their advice. Since some of them are geniuses and have advanced skills - skills that he does not have - it makes him appear to be some sort of preternatural polymath.

A dame walks into his office. (Actually it's his mansion. His bizarre gift/disorder/ability has made him rich, thanks to people wanting to study him and occasionally needing his help.) The setup is a bit of a riff on a noir thriller, but this isn't a noir tale, it's a sci-fi tale about a camera that can take pictures of the past. "Legion" has to find it. The man who allegedly invented it wants to find out the truth — or perhaps expose it — about religion. Specifically, Christianity.

Now, Brandon Sanderson is a Mormon, albeit a rather mild and inoffensive one, not like Orson Scott Card. I have seen him play with theology in his books before, and he always keeps it tame. There is some thoughtfulness in his approach, but I knew he wasn't going to do anything so gauche as to "prove" either his religious or his atheist readers "wrong" in this story. So the ending is a little vague, and of course has enough of a hook to make this the start of a series, since Sanderson is trying to be Michael Moorcock and stuffing every single thing he writes into his Grand Unified Sandersonverse.

Not a bad story. I give it 3.5 stars, but am ungenerously rounding down because Sanderson has gotten stale for me, though I am looking forward to his next Stormlight Archive volume.