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Words of Radiance

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<Words of Radiance>
Words of Radiance.jpg
by Michael Whelan
The Stormlight Archive
Follows The Way of Kings
Precedes Stormlight Archive 3
Setting Roshar, Cosmere
Released 4th March 2014
Publisher Tor
ISBN 0-7653-2636-1

Words of Radiance is the title for the second book in The Stormlight Archive.[1] It was released on March 4th, 2014.

Cover Synopsis[edit]

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.


Shallan's flashbacks describe her childhood and the gradual destruction of her family. The main story follows Dalinar, Adolin, and Kaladin preparing for the annihilation of the Parshendi, and Shallan's journey to the Shattered Plains.

From the Cover Flap[edit]

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 an desperate gamble with the very supernatural forces they once fled. The consequences for Parshendi and humans alike—indeed, for Roshar itself—are as dangerous as they are incalculable.

Statistical Analysis[edit]


The working title for the book was The Book of Endless Pages but, Brandon decided to rename it due to the irony of the book having over 1000 pages.[2]


  • 2014 Whitney Award for Speculative Fiction[3]
  • 2015 Audie Award for Fantasy (for the audiobook)[4]


  1. Words of Radiance press release - Feb 28th, 2013
  2. Why the name change?
    Theoryland - Nov 8th, 2011
  3. 2014 Whitney Award Winners - May 18th 2015
  4. 2015 Audie Award Winners
    — - May 29th, 2015
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