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Words of Radiance
The Stormlight Archive
Cover art by Michael Whelan
Publication information
Genre(s) Epic fantasy
Publisher Tor Books
Publication date March 2014
Media type Hardcover
Pages 1087
ISBN ISBN 978-0-7653-2636-2
Preceded By The Way of Kings
Followed By Edgedancer, Oathbringer, Dawnshard, Rhythm of War

Words of Radiance is the second volume in The Stormlight Archive, an epic fantasy series by Brandon Sanderson expected to consist of ten volumes. It was released on March 4th, 2014. [1]

With this volume, the epic continues the story of Kaladin from the first volume, The Way of Kings. However, in this volume, the focal character is Shallan. Interludes from the points of view of TalnTaravangian, Eshonai and Rysn were confirmed by Sanderson prior to the novel's release. Additionally, Interludes from the points of view of Ym and Lift are included herein.

Initially, Sanderson planned that this volume would be named after the tome Shallan is given at the end of the first volume (i.e., The Book of Endless Pages). However, the name was changed after the editor commented "Uh, are you sure you want to name a very long, very thick fantasy book The Book of Endless Pages?"[2][3]

Sanderson said that the book in hardcover would be 1088 pages; the maximum printable size of a book for his publisher, Tor.[4]

Cover Flap[]

The eagerly awaited sequel to the New York Times bestselling The Way of Kings.

Six years ago, the Assassin in White, a hireling of the inscrutable Parshendi, assassinated the Alethi King on the very night a treaty between men and Parshendi was being celebrated. So began the Vengeance Pact among the Highprinces of Alethkar and the War of Reckoning against the Parshendi.

Now the Assassin is active again, murdering rulers all over the world, using his baffling powers to thwart every bodyguard and elude all pursuers. Among his prime targets is Highprince Dalinar, widely considered the power behind the Alethi throne. His leading role in the war would seem reason enough, but the Assassin’s master has much deeper motives.

Expected by his enemies to die the miserable death of a military slave, Kaladin survived to be given command of the royal bodyguards, a controversial first for a low-status darkeyes.  Now he must protect the King and Dalinar from every common peril, as well as the distinctly uncommon threat of the Assassin, all while secretly struggling to master remarkable new powers that are somehow linked to his honorspren, Syl.

Brilliant but troubled Shallan strives along a parallel path. Despite being broken in ways she refuses to acknowledge, she bears a terrible burden: to somehow prevent the return of the legendary Voidbringers and their civilization-ending Desolation. The secrets she needs can be found at the Shattered Plains, but even arriving there proves more difficult than she imagined.

Meanwhile, at the heart of the Shattered Plains, the Parshendi are making an epochal decision. Hard pressed by years of Alethi attacks, their numbers ever shrinking, they are convinced by their war leader, Eshonai, to risk everything on a desperate gamble with the very supernatural forces they once fled. The consequences for both Parshendi and humans alike - indeed, for Roshar itself - are as dangerous as they are incalculable.[5]


The Knights Radiant must stand again.

The ancient oaths have at last been spoken; the spren return. Men seek that which was lost. I fear the struggle will destroy them.

It is the nature of the magic. A broken soul has cracks into which something else can be fit.  Surgebindings, the powers of creation themselves.  They can brace a broken soul; but they can also widen its fissures.

The Windrunner, lost in a shattered land, balanced upon the boundary between  vengeance and honor. The Lightweaver, slowly being consumed by her past, searching for the lie that she must become. The Bondsmith, born in blood and death, striving to rebuild what was destroyed. The Explorer, straddling the fates of two peoples, forced to  choose between slow death and a terrible betrayal of all she believes.

It is past time for them to awaken, for the Everstorm looms.

And ... the Assassin has arrived.[6]


For in depth plot summary, see Chapter Summaries.

Sample Chapters are available for reading on Brandon's website.