Easily one of my favourite standalone fantasy novels, Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson is a fantastic, self-contained story with scope for so much more (I'm looking forward to anything else he sets in its world) and it's that sense of what lays beyond the story, that really adds to the richness I found in Warbreaker.
The magic system(s) in the story are fantastic and there's a few twists that really surprised me in a way that let me know I'd been truly sucked into the story. Great twin storylines that follow two sisters of the Idrian nation and their struggles against a powerful rival land.
Perhaps most fascinating about Warbreaker, maybe for writers moreso than readers (maybe) is that Brandon has also made several drafts of the novel available free on his website, so check it out here! I found it very interesting to see his process evolve over the course of the drafts.
I had to have a print copy of this, but you can also download a pdf version of Warbreaker that's basically a 'final' version at the bottom of the page I link to above.
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Ashley Capes is an Australian writer of fiction, poetry and very occasional non-fiction.
Imperial Towers (Never Book 5) - draft 1
Moss Dragon - draft 1
Reed Lavender (working title) - draft 1
Unnamed Spec Fic - draft 1
Whisper of Leaves (sequel) - Outline