Legion

Legion is another novella by Brandon Sanderson, after reading The Emperor’s Soul yesterday I read Legion today, and I don’t really know which one I would say is better, but they’re both short and a lot of fun so I would highly suggest you check them both out.

Book StatsLegion

86 pages

Science Fiction/Fantasy – It’s kind of weird to fit into a specific genre, but it contains elements of both of those

Stand alone novella

Characters

This book has a very small cast of characters, yet at the same time one of the more expansive ones I’ve seen in a short story.  Stephen Leeds is a man who has schizophrenia, but he doesn’t have any problems because of it, in fact, he has learned to use his hallucinations in a variety of ways.  All of his hallucinations – or aspects as he calls them – specialize in their own field.  As a result he is potentially one of the smartest people in the world, able to learn any subject quickly by studying it and then creating a new aspect.  Watching him argue with himself as he goes through the story was a lot of fun.  All of his aspects were interesting and had their own unique personalities.

Setting

Modern day U.S. and Jerusalem.

Plot

Someone comes to Stephen asking for his help.  A laboratory had been working with a scientist who created a camera capable of taking pictures of the past, and the scientist has stolen the camera.  So Stephen is asked to help find the missing scientist.

Enjoyment

I really liked this story.  It was funny throughout as a bunch of very different personalities were all interacting through Stephen’s aspects, but there is also a very deep story told in a very short time.  The story raises some deep questions, questions to which there really aren’t good answers.  The book does an excellent job of building the backstory for Stephen, starting with explaining how he came to be in his current situation, to why looking for the camera in the first place would be enticing to him.

There’s another part of this that is really interesting to me.  Earlier today I was talking to one of my co-workers and I wondered what it would be like to be cognizant of the fact that you’re going insane.  I’ve talked before about how I have a bit of Paranoid Personality Disorder (or maybe a bit of OCD), but I deal with it quite well and it doesn’t really affect my life.  I really wonder what it would be like to be aware of the fact that I’m losing touch with reality.  Unfortunately, the very nature of the condition means that it’s impossible to be aware of going insane if it is happening, so it’s largely a moot point.  But it is kind of fun to think about.

Overall Grade

Another really interesting short work from Sanderson, and another good way to check out his fiction if you don’t want to start with a large novel.

9/10

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1 Comment

  1. Well, after really enjoying The Emperor’s Soul I will definitely be tempted to pick up this story as well.
    Thanks
    Lynn 😀

    Reply

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