Mistborn Explained: Who is Vin? - The Fantasy Review

Mistborn Explained: Who is Vin?

In this article we explore Vin’s character in the Mistborn trilogy by Brandon Sanderson. This article includes SPOILERS for all three books in the series.

mistborn explained who is vin

Vin is the main protagonist of the Mistborn trilogy, written by Brandon Sanderson. She is recruited by Kelsier to help overthrow the Lord Ruler and played a pivotal role in the Lord Ruler’s defeat, the subsequent Skaa government, and the consolidation of the Second Final Empire. Vin is later praised as the “Ascendant Warrior” in The Alloy of Law, though at that point she is more myth than fact.


At the beginning of the first book, Vin is a very untrusting girl growing up in Luthadel. She knows that she is special because she can use what she calls “Luck” but is later understood to be Allomancy, to help her survive and aid her thieving crew.

While attending noble balls in the guise of Valette Renoux, Vin falls in love with Elend Venture, a nobleman, and heir to the strongest noble house. Elend becomes King at the end of the first book, marries Vin in the second, loses his title of King, and becomes Emperor at the end of the book. This effectively makes Vin the Empress.

The Church of the Survivor originally viewed Vin as a deity, the “Lady Heir”, as she was the apprentice of Kelsier, whom the Church of the Survivor worship as a messiah. At some point in the next three hundred years, she is then known as the Ascendant Warrior.


Vin is a Mistborn of great power and skill. She has great skill with most metals, and can make use of Duralumin to control Koloss, Kandra, and potentially Steel Inquisitors. As Preservation’s chosen successor, she can draw power from the Mists, and used this ability to kill the Lord Ruler and later defeat 13 Steel Inquisitors.

She can only do this, however, when she is not wearing her earring, as Ruin is able to block her connection to the mists thanks to the earring’s Hemalurgic properties. Vin is more powerful than most Mistborn, coming from a “pure lineage,” although first generation Mistborn (such as the Lord Ruler, and for functional purposes, Elend) have greater raw power. She can Push and Pull on metals, and Soothe and Riot with a high degree of power.

Hero of Ages

Through much of the series, Vin is thought to be the Hero of Ages, but eventually it is revealed that she is not. While this title applied to multiple characters, both Alendi and the Lord Ruler also claiming it; the only true Hero of Ages is Sazed.


Late in the third book, Vin absorbs all of the Mists, becoming Preservation. After Ruin arranges for the death of Elend, Vin uses her new power as the God Preservation to kill Ruin, which also results in her own death. Sazed then absorbs the power from the bodies of Vin and Ruin and becomes Harmony. Sazed hints at his ability to return Vin and Elend back to life later on when he learns more about his new powers.

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