LEGION by Brandon Sanderson
Legion was an interesting novella with a truly great conceit. Brandon Sanderson has created his version of Sherlock Holmes and introduced him in a whimsical, yet thought-provoking investigation.
Stephen Leeds is a genius and a mental case, a man with gifted personalities that appear, disappear, are masters of innumerable skillsets – and they tend to quite often have lives of their own. That concept alone had me because I’ve been fascinated by Jamie Madrox, a character in the Marvel Comics universe who has an ability to create physical duplicates of himself after getting hit.
I love the idea of being able to create copies of yourself, sending them out in the world to learn things, and then having access to that information. Leeds’s ability is different, though. He can read up on whatever topic he needs to become a sudden expert in, then a new personality steps into his head and begins aiding him.
The puzzle in this one fits the character, too: a camera that everyone believes takes pictures of the future. That’s an idea that’s been done to death in so many ways, even as a Twilight Zone episode, but Sanderson still finds a way to make it exciting and new.
Sanderson delivers quick action and easily readable dialogue that illustrates his characters very nicely. I’m hoping that this is the first of a series because that’s the way it feels. I look forward to seeing Leeds and his other selves again soon.