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68 of 72 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Brilliantly Unique Story
The world considers Stephen Leeds a genius. Psychologists want to study him, and the rest of the world would like to use him to fix problems nobody else can. Stephen just wants to be left alone, well alone as anyone can be when they have extraordinary friends that only they can see. It's how he got the title of genius. If he runs into a problem one of his "friends" comes...
Published on September 5, 2012 by Bret Jordan

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21 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I'm a Huge Sanderson Fan - But You Can Skip This
I have read almost all of Sanderson's stuff and enjoyed it greatly. That said, I think even fans can safely skip this.

Why? Well this sci-fi story feels even shorter than its 80-something pages. There is a bit of a sci-fi idea, a bit of a mystery, a bit of action and, ultimately, a bit of a story. Its not that its poorly done - its not - its just that its...
Published on September 13, 2012 by Art


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68 of 72 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Brilliantly Unique Story, September 5, 2012
By 
Bret Jordan (Vidor, Texas USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Legion (Hardcover)
The world considers Stephen Leeds a genius. Psychologists want to study him, and the rest of the world would like to use him to fix problems nobody else can. Stephen just wants to be left alone, well alone as anyone can be when they have extraordinary friends that only they can see. It's how he got the title of genius. If he runs into a problem one of his "friends" comes in to help. You see, Stephen is psychotic. He has a mental disorder that causes him to dream up imaginary people, with imaginary personalities and emotional quirks that give them a level of detail that would make almost anyone believe in them, if anyone but Stephen could see them.

In Legion Stephen Leeds shows the reader how extraordinary his `problem' is when he works on a case to track down a missing scientist. The strange man has created a camera that takes pictures of the past, and the company who financed the development of the camera wants control of the device.

Brandon Sanderson has shown his imaginative brilliance in this unique tale. In Stephen Leeds he has created a bizarre character who imagines other bizarre characters that work together to make a single individual who is amazing in his depth and uniqueness. That in itself is a solid piece of the story, but the camera is another, at least in the ramifications of such a device. In Legion Brandon Sanderson takes the camera and asks what are the potential hazard of such a device to politics, religion, and blackmail. He shows that such a camera would be a wonderful device, but one that could bolster, or destroy all our beliefs. Would the world be prepared for such truths, and would such a camera do more to destroy or help?

If you're looking for a story that is truly unique with a little mystery, comedy, and science fiction then I would strongly recommend this tale.
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39 of 42 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating idea that ended too soon, September 13, 2012
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This review is from: Legion (Hardcover)
Infinity Blade: Awakening showcased Brandon Sanderson is his element, bringing an addicting story with a lot of potential, only to end just when the story got its hooks deep in you, leaving you wanting so much more. Legion, though different and not nearly as deep, is as entertaining, though not as fulfilling. Do not let that dissuade you, however. Legion provides plenty of entertainment.

The many hallucinations of Stephen Leeds provide a great variety of personalities that play well off each other and the protagonist. Sanderson continues to show his humor with an abundance of wit in how each hallucination behaves and interacts with each other and the real world. They are a treat to read and in typical Sanderson fashion, the plot is swift and engaging enough. Legion, though, is too short for my liking, which is why I did not give it five stars. Definitely a solid four, maybe four and a half.

Legion shares a similar trait to The Alloy of Law: both felt like incomplete stories, but Legion's even more so. I know it is a novella and they are supposed to be short, but that does not change how I felt when I finished both novels. It almost seems as if Sanderson did not want or did not have the time to finish the full story and instead provided a tantalizing, though mildly frustrating, cliffhanger. Ultimately it is a minor grievance, though I wish Sanderson spent a few more days finishing the story. Firstborn, also a great read, is slightly shorter yet more complete, and Infinity Blade: Awakening, around twice as long as Legion, had a fitting length. So why did Legion have to remain so open ended? I digress.

I am no less a Sanderson fan than before I read the story. Quite the contrary, I love seeing him venture into the science fiction genre and Legion only solidifies him further as my favorite author due to his consistent high quality of story telling. Legion is a solid read and if you have enjoyed Sanderon's previous works, I see no reason why you would not enjoy this. It is short, light, but through and through, very entertaining.
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48 of 54 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A fun, quick read, September 7, 2012
By 
troubadour (Baltimore, MD USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Legion (Hardcover)
Earlier this year, I heard that Subterranean Press was going to be releasing a signed, limited edition Brandon Sanderson novella. It was a no-brainer of a pre-order. And, boy was I glad to get it. I snagged copy 295!

When it came last week, I sat down and really enjoyed this little gem. It's a fun story that makes a great Saturday Morning read. The plot's fun, if a bit simplistic for a Sanderson work. Of course, the length of the work does limit how much can go into it. It had several really enjoyable aspects, though. I liked the idea of exploring the lines between sanity and insanity. And there is an absolutely hilarious romantic interlude that I had to read over a couple of times just to get how kooky it was.

So, as you can guess, I didn't purchase this novel from Amazon. And I actually payed a lot more than the Amazon price to get LEGION. But there's a reason that I got it the way that I did. I rarely buy books in a physical format anymore. If I really want to read something, I get it for my kindle or I borrow it from the library. I do this with comics and movies, too. It's just less expensive in the long run, and it saves on space. But there are some things I want to own. I want the pleasure of possession. And Sanderson's novels fall into this category. It's going onto the shelf next to all the other pretty Sanderson novels to be adored. Every once in a while, I'll take it down and mutter something about "precious," eat some raw fish, and indulge in a phlegmy cough.

Between this, the Mistborn Adventure Game, and The Emperor's Soul, I've got plenty of collecting to add to the shelf this year.

Just a quick edit. I've decided to purchase the e-book version of this through amazon. I did get a free copy of that from Dragonsteel Entertainment, but I'm a member of lendle.me and would like there to be a copy available for someone else. Also, if you're interested in more of this character, Brandon said over twitter that he's sold rights to a television show to Lionsgate. That's currently in development.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Sanderson Book, but Short, September 5, 2012
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This review is from: Legion (Hardcover)
Got the book yesterday and read it in one night. This is a testament to both how good the book is and how short. This IS a novella, so as mentioned in other reviews it is short. In spite of that, I think it was absolutely worth every penny and I wish I had decided to shell out the money for a signed copy when they were available.

Pros
Brandon Sanderson wrote it
Engaging story
Interesting twists
Great Characters

Cons
Only ~90 pages long, finished in a single night of reading
Haven't heard that there will be a sequel yet
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sanderson creates a very interesting character in Legion, though the plot device has been seen before, September 19, 2012
By 
Gary Hoggatt (Los Angeles, CA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Legion (Hardcover)
Brandon Sanderson is best known for epic fantasy novels, both set in his own worlds and completing Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series. As a big fan of Sanderson's epics, I was surprised to see the release his 2012 science fiction novella Legion, as it's a much shorter format than he usually writes in. Nonetheless, I'm always pleased to read more Sanderson, and while after reading Legion I still think his talents are best suited for epics, I really enjoyed the novella and am glad he's experimenting with new ideas and releasing more stories for his fans to enjoy.

The main character is Stephen Leeds, occasionally known as "Legion" due to the virtual army of multiple hallucinatory personalities he possesses, and who help him with the various cases he takes on. In Legion, Leeds is hired to find the inventor of a camera that can take pictures of the past after the inventor absconds with the device.

The character of Leeds and the characters of his aspects are a lot of fun and the relationships between them all are very interesting. To me, Leeds and his aspects are the core of this story. The camera bit is sort of secondary to demonstrate Leeds' talents and the dynamic he has with his aspects. Fortunately, it's a very interesting idea. Unfortunately, I wish it had been explored at more depth than a novella can afford. We only see a handful of his dozens of aspects here, and even those few I wish I could learn more about.

The plot about the camera was alright, but as soon as it was revealed, I immediately thought of Isaac Asimov's 1956 short story "The Dead Past," which also has such a device (called a chronoscope by Asimov) and also raises the same problems with such a thing that Sanderson brings up in Legion. It's not that this is a bad plot device. It's actually very interesting. It's just that Asimov pretty much nailed it over half a century ago, and I didn't see anything new from Sanderson on this front like I did with Leeds and his aspects.

Overall, I enjoyed Legion. It's a fun book, Leeds and his aspects are great characters, and I see a lot of potential with him. I just wish we could have seen more development of them, and that the mystery might have been something different or taken in new directions. I'd definitely pick up any future Legion stories Sanderson chooses to write, and I'm happy I was able to read this (and have Sanderson's short novel, The Emperor's Soul, coming in November, 2012) while awaiting A Memory of Light in January 2013 and Sanderson's future epics in his own worlds.
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21 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I'm a Huge Sanderson Fan - But You Can Skip This, September 13, 2012
By 
Art (New Jersey) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Legion (Kindle Edition)
I have read almost all of Sanderson's stuff and enjoyed it greatly. That said, I think even fans can safely skip this.

Why? Well this sci-fi story feels even shorter than its 80-something pages. There is a bit of a sci-fi idea, a bit of a mystery, a bit of action and, ultimately, a bit of a story. Its not that its poorly done - its not - its just that its not a very ambitious story, walking a fairly quiet path without really focusing on the sci-fi, the action, or the story. In a novella of this length, maybe you cant really hit a home run in every aspect of a book, but this book doesnt even try...rather, it provides you just a little bit of everything (idea, action, story, character), and the result, while pleasant enough, is rather forgettable. Comparatively speaking, Sanderson's full length novels seem to pack in even more action, imagination and story than the gap in page length would suggest, perhaps because the 80 pages isnt enough to gather momentum.

Verdict: Pleasant, but forgettable. Worth the $2.99, but you can probably find something that deserves to be higher on the to read pile -- most especially including any of Sanderson's full length novels you havent read.

P.S.: Sanderson's short story "Firstborn" (40 pages) fits more in the tradition of short sci-fi stories where you finish and are blown away by the fully revealed premise. Although shorter than Legion, it is memorable due to the power of its central idea. On the somewhat longer side, at 180 pages, Sanderson's The Emperor's Soul feels like a full novel; although it is a little light on action, the magic system, characterization and premise are terrific and the book just works. By comparison, "Legion" occupies some sort of awkward middle ground between the two lengths, and as a result doesnt shine.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read, September 4, 2012
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This review is from: Legion (Hardcover)
Legion is a novella worthy of Philip K. Dick. It messes with reality in a really interesting way. I am extremely proud of Sanderson for branching out to the modern thriller style, and doing so well at it. He's really showing off his skill here.

If you can't afford the cost of this book, then it's not worth it to you. But don't complain about it--just buy the ebook and let the rest of us enjoy this quality binding and spellbinding story.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly Unique and Enjoyable, September 12, 2012
By 
Cara Drake (Clearwater, FL) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Legion (Kindle Edition)
Like other reviewers, I was not prepared to pay $15 for a short novella, no matter who wrote it. With it now in the ebook format, I debated all of two seconds before purchasing it. It was a very fast read - not just due to its short length, but also due to it being surprising unique. I've never read of a book like this, and it was so interesting that it hooked me from the very start.

The idea of someone having hallucinations is not new. But what Mr. Sanderson did with them - the amount of interaction and vivid personalities displayed by each "aspect" - is something fresh and unique.

I totally recommend this novella to anyone and everyone. In fact, as lending is enabled on this book: I am willing to loan out my copy to someone who is interested in reading it. I can only loan it out once, and I'm positive that you'll enjoy it as much as I did. :)

To Mr. Sanderson: please consider giving Stephen and his aspects their own series. Thank you!
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it. Great novella by a writer who has an astonishing imagination., September 4, 2012
By 
Storylover (Philadelphia, PA USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Legion (Hardcover)
I love Brandon Sanderson. I happily shucked out my dinero for a signed/numbered copy of this limited press edition, and know that I got a bargain. Sanderson is the real deal....a genuinely original fantasy voice in a market crowded with me too's. Legion is very short--88 pages which I finished in about 45 min--but boy was it delicious. I love this character, his world, and the concept. This would make a wondrous movie, and I sincerely hope that we get a full length series for this guy. Sanderson's imagination is so fecund that he can pull stuff off like this in his sleep, and he leaves amazing worlds scattered behind him like so many magical toys.... The only solution that I can imagine is that he must write more! And despite the fact that he is one of the most prolific young authors, he must write even faster! Hehehe. a real treat. Catch it if you can. A real winner.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Standalone yet, September 11, 2012
This review is from: Legion (Hardcover)
For me, Sanderson's shorter stories generally fallen short of the longer plotlines such as the Mistborn trilogy and Stormlight archives. It makes sense-- the shorter books just don't have enough room to be compared on an equal level.

This one was different. I would place it on equal footing with tWoK, which is mind-boggling to me.

What is more mind-boggling is that after reading the e-book version, I feel compelled to purchase the hardcover for my collection. The premise, character, humor, and execution still has me in a daze of awe.

Let's just say I am reconsidering some of my 5-star reviews of Sanderson's other works now that he has given me a new benchmark for these stand-alones.
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Legion
Legion by Brandon Sanderson (Hardcover - August 31, 2012)
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