The Well of Ascension by Brandon Sanderson.
2nd book of the Mistborn series.
Tor Fantasy/Tom Dougherty Associates: NY, 2007.
The book starts a year after the revolution in Mistborn: The Final Empire. Elend Venture, the mistborn Vin's sweetheart, rules as king due to his initiative in setting up the new government, but Elend has written into the law an option for a parliament to vote out the king. With two armies squatting outside the city and another on the way, that looks like an inevitability. Kelsier's crew is still in tact, trying to find a way out of the situation. One of the spies, a shapeshifter, is now Vin's sidekick. Elend is being trained in kingship by a Terris Keeper. The Terriswoman and Sazed research peculiarities together. Vin is doing her own research, into metal usage and the mists. In the background through the whole story is the awareness that there is a traitor involed in their planning.

In Mistborn, it is revealed that the Lord Ruler took a mysterious power, found at the Well of Ascension, to arrange the world for his own rule. Vin and Sazed research this power source separately - partly as an extension of the research done before, partly because they are concerned about anomalies.

There is also another mistborn on the scene. He is the primary weapon of one of the other armies, as Vin is Luthdel's. He may also be the only other person that understands Vin now that Kelsier is gone.

This second book in the series is larger in scope than the first. Many twists, turns, innuendos. This, perhaps, is Sanderson's most developed political novel. We have a nobleman, Elend, who has studied politics, the law and the economy. He genuinely wants to uplift the skaa (peasants/slaves), give them a life of opportunities, choices, and hope. However, in the chaos after the revolution, the other noblemen and merchants are looking for ways to grab the power for themselves and revert back to former ways.

related-magical forces, metalurgy, politics, government, freedom, fantasy

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