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Archive for the ‘Wheel of Time’ Category

Towers of Midnight

Posted by spragujs on November 9, 2010

Towers of Midnight coverLast night I was able to finish the newest (and penultimate) book in the Wheel of Time series, Towers of Midnight.

This book was a great last step before the Last Battle (and hopefully, at least to me, a bit of aftermath).  I do feel there were a couple of issues left undone (Black Tower much?) that maybe should have been resolved before the LB, but maybe I can be convinced otherwise when the last book comes out.

I do have to say that the mixed up timelines in this one were a bit… unsatisfying.  (I always did like Tam, but he’s not so cool as to be capable of being in two places at once.  Not even Rand can actually do so, it just seems like it with the Traveling.)  😉  I did know that Perrin’s timeline was behind those of the others, but reading the near past interspersed with the present didn’t work for me that well.

Also, I’m always a bit frustrated when the characters’ POV’s change from chapter to chapter, but in this book, there were generally several per chapter.  It does make sense for this book (things are racing toward the Last Battle at a furious pace), but it happens to be one of those things I’m not terribly fond of and it was accentuated in this book.  On the other hand, I also have to admit that the switches didn’t leave me going, “?!   But what happens to so-and-so next?!”  I knew things would eventually come back around.

I have to laugh at a couple of things as well.  Slight spoilers:  The big who-killed-Asmodean reveal, which everyone knew would be in this book, really kinda wasn’t.  It’s in the glossary.  And no explanation of how it was done is given.  That cracks me up!  Check the FAQ link above for details on many theories, and then cross reference with your glossary to see if you guessed correctly.  The theory I most agreed with turned out to be right.

The other funny bit was how The Big Thing that was to happen in this book was left clear until the end (with just a couple of small aftermath details following).  It turned out to be great (and a bit sad) and funny!  SPOILER sentence below! 

(I’d have loved to see Mat marry Thom and Moiraine “on screen”.)

Every entry with Lan had me a tad teary eyed.  And Rand’s second meeting with Tam was awesome.

And last, but not least, I was actually satisfied by the ending!  I expected to really want to go out and read the rest RIGHT NOW!  But it turns out that it worked for me this way.  I would like to go read the rest right now, don’t get me wrong, it’s just that there was more than enough to think about and semi-tied up threads to tide one over.  Yay for a fantastic end in sight!

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Posted in Reading, Wheel of Time | 1 Comment »

The Gathering Storm

Posted by spragujs on November 2, 2010

So, I reread The Gathering Storm last week, again as part of my preparation for Towers of Midnight, which technically comes out today, but I’m putting off buying it as I’m going to a book signing tomorrow.  (Read my original thoughts about tGS here.)

I still loved the book.  As I mentioned in my last post, I think I did end up liking KoD more, but just barely.  I’d hoped to drag this one out so that I wouldn’t end up reading anything else before Towers came out, but once things got rolling, I just never wanted to stop reading.  I’m really, REALLY looking forward to Towers of Midnight tomorrow.  Go out and get your copies now if you have the chance!  🙂

Posted in Reading, Wheel of Time | 1 Comment »

Knife of Dreams

Posted by spragujs on October 26, 2010

This one’s not going to be an actual review, as this book was just a reread for me in preparation for the 13th book which is coming out on Tuesday November 2!  The post will just be some rambling thoughts and also, if you haven’t read the book, there will definitely be spoilers here!

Knife of Dreams is the 11th book of the Wheel of Time series, which was started by Robert Jordan and will be finished with the help of Brandon SandersonKnife of Dreams was the last WoT novel that RJ wrote on his own.  At the time it came out I’d been participating in the mailing list that’s organized by Dragonmount.com.  It was a very good group, in fact, a bit too good in some ways.  By the time I got around to reading KoD, it felt like a checklist for all the things the list’s posters had talked about rather than a book that I’d been looking forward to for quite some time.  So, having now reread it, long after those discussions had taken place…  The book was awesome!!! 

I’m rereading The Gathering Storm right now, and I had previously thought I enjoyed it more than KoD, but now reading them back to back (and keeping in mind I’m not done yet with tGS, and I know there are parts at the end that are awesome) I think I actually enjoyed KoD more.  Then again, Mat is one of the best characters in the whole series, and he’s in that one a lot.  Also, Rand hasn’t gone completely hardcore yet in that book either.  (Though thankfully, he hopefully learned that’s not the way at the end of tGS!  It’s really hard to have one of your favorite characters at the beginning of the series become one of your least favorite.  At least his actions are important enough to still be interesting.)  KoD also seems to be the turning point for Perrin who also went from one of my favorites down the charts (though not as far down as Rand). 

In a way though, it’s kind of hard to think of them as separate books at all.  This whole series starting at about book 7 should really be read all the way through without breaks as they’re more suited to being one big story, rather than an attempt at several “smaller” stories.

Well, there were some rambling thoughts for you!  Not nearly as many spoilers as I’d first assumed either, but mostly I wanted to discuss the turn around KoD had for me now that it’s no longer a checklist in my mind.  Can’t wait for Towers of Midnight!  (Well, perhaps a few more days since I’ve got at least a few more days worth of reading in tGS to do.)  😉

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The Gathering Storm

Posted by spragujs on November 10, 2009

The Gathering StormAh, but it’s been a long time.  Brandon Sanderson, who I’d never heard of until I heard that he was chosen to finish the Wheel of Time series with Robert Jordan’s notes, has come out with the first of the three remaining novels of the Wheel.  (And for the record, I’m extremely glad he was chosen!)

I think the book was fantastic!  I’m sorely sad to have finished; I wish I could have drawn out reading it for a longer period of time, but I didn’t manage it.  Having gotten to about a 1/3 from the end, the pace was like that of a boulder that had been dropped off the lip of Dragonmount!  Other reviewers felt like some of the characters had a definite different feel to their POVs and I don’t disagree, but at the same time, they still came across as the same characters to me.  (Maybe it would have been different if I’d just finished a reread or something.)

The book focuses mostly on Rand and Egwene, and those with them, of course.  Lan and Elayne are mentioned from other character’s POVs, but are otherwise not in the books.  Besides that you get the other main characters in smaller capacities.  I suspect this is due to the splitting of the final “volume” into three books.  As an Egwene fan, I thoroughly enjoyed the fact that she was a major player in this book.  I’m also looking forward to where everyone goes from here.  The pacing does suffer in this novel, but I’d argue that’s a pretty common trend for RJ’s books.  Mainly, some plotlines last forever, when we’d like them to get over quickly.  Thankfully, there were a few plotlines that were tied up in this novel, and I feel that this helped to keep them from being in the dragged out category.  Or that it at least finally ended the dragging.

In any case, if you’re a Wheel of Time fan, go out and read the novel!  (Or wait till 2011 and just finish it all at once!)  And as a last note, I sure am sad that Tam won’t ever get his prequel…  😦

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Dead Beat by Jim Butcher

Posted by spragujs on May 15, 2009

Dead Beat Wizard at LargeAnother great one by Butcher!  So much happens in some of these books!  And the level of action is always so well maintained!  I don’t think this one became my favorite, but possibly only because of a couple of disappointments I felt for Harry.  First, I can’t figure out why he didn’t spend the year of “off” time fixing his shield bracelet.  I think if I were him I’d have spent a good chunk of time trying to figure out how to make it also protect from heat (and maybe other related things I could come up with).  It’s possible that such a thing isn’t possible, but I’d have still made the attempt.  I get his fear of fire though.  I can understand that one.  Oh, and the other disappointment, which has carried over into the next book is that Harry’s still all self-righteous over Ebenezer’s betrayal.  To be honest I didn’t really agree with it in the first place (though I can understand somewhat how he’d be upset), but the longer it carries on the less sympathy I have.

This one had lots of fun stuff happening though and also lots of funny!  😀  Much of which was well blended with actions that became quite serious.

Also, it’s interesting to me how similar in some ways Harry is to Rand al’Thor in the Wheel of Time novels.  Harry’s prone to taking chivalry too far (by not wanting to hurt women, no matter how bad they are) and he’s got himself his own version of Lews Therin/Lanfear in Lasciel.  Lews Therin by her being in his head and Lanfear by her actions.  Hmm, seems like there was something else as well, but now I’ve forgotten it.  [ETA:  Ah yes, Harry basically learned the Flame and the Void.]

I hope Harry finds someone to carry Shiro’s sword soon!  Seems important to have the third Knight of the Cross running around at this point.  Then again, you wouldn’t want to choose hastily and poorly either.  (I think we’re warming up to Butter’s getting the position myself.)  😉  It’s nice to know that Harry’s now got a steady paying job though.  LOL!

Also, this was the second book in the omnibus I was reading (as was Death Masks which I think was my favorite so far), and it got me addicted so that I decided to read more Harry instead of taking a brief break like I’d intended.  😉

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Earlier Ravens by Robert Jordan

Posted by spragujs on April 20, 2009

Earlier Ravens

Wow, I just read the prologue, Earlier Ravens, that was added to the first of the YA Eye of the World novels, From the Two Rivers.  I have to say I’m a bit disappointed.

Tam tells a story about the Dragon and how he resealed the Bore with the 100 companions?!  What happened to the-Dragon-is-a-darkfriend-who-released-the-Dark-One-from-his-prison in EotW?!  Even Thom, in EotW, didn’t seem to know the story Tam told in this prologue!  Not to mention that the Emond’s Fielders in EotW seemed to think Aes Sedai were darkfriends, but here Egwene insinuates the Women’s Circle wouldn’t stand for that kind of talk.  (Though I do know Tam would have known better on this one.)  This is hard for me ’cause I enjoyed the story, but these kinds of continuity issues bug me.

And the comic book version, in it’s attempt at brevity makes the situation worse.  It also makes it sound like the adults decided Rand and Egwene would marry.  Where what actually happens is that Rand and Egwene start paying attention to one another and then the adults decide they’re likely to marry.  I’ll probably still buy the compilations of the comic, but it’d be nice if they could get all the nuances across as well.  (This Egwene/Rand bit is admittedly nitpicky, and apparently, the rest is in the actual prologue, so I can’t blame the comic for that blunder!)

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A Memory of Light to be 3 Books

Posted by spragujs on April 17, 2009

First, I strongly recommend reading Brandon Sanderson’s (the author finishing AMoL) explanation of the situation.  After reading that, it’s funny and sad to me that other folks still think it’s all about the money.  Sounds to me like it’s all about the story, and frankly that’s what I care about.  I just have one thing that make me sad about this new development.  Previously Sanderson had talked about AMoL being divided up into two books, which would have put the total at 13.  Considering the significance of the number 13 in the Wheel of Time, I really kind of liked that idea and am sad to have lost it.  Guess I shouldn’t have gotten so attached!

In any case, I’m looking forward to The Gathering Storm coming out November 3 of this year.  If things go as planned and the other two come out in November 2010 and November 2011, I’d say that’s doing pretty well considering how big these books are likely to be.  And I desperately hope I don’t hear bad things about Brandon if/when he starts posting about his work on his own books.  After reading his books I’m almost more excited about any of them than I am AMoL, and I’ve been a WoT fan for a long time.  I really hope people remember that Brandon was an author in his own right before he landed this opportunity.

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Tor.com’s Reread of the Wheel of Time

Posted by spragujs on March 12, 2009

The Wheel of Time

If you are a fan of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series, go now!  Read this!  The recaps and commentary are being written by Leigh Butler, and if she becomes a writer like her blog indicates she’d like, well I say bring it on, ’cause I’ll read her books anytime based on this recap!  

It’s also a good cheat for rereading the series.  Especially if the next book is going to be out in November as these countdown widgets from Tor indicate!

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Robert Jordan passes

Posted by spragujs on September 18, 2007

Well, I’m sure that most people to whom this matters have already heard about it. It was a sad day on Sunday the 16th when Robert Jordan passed away. I didn’t hear about it till Monday. All the various things I’ve read have made me cry. I wish the best to his family and friends who will now have to live without him. Beyond the usual, I don’t have that much to add, but I thought I’d link to a couple of places where folk can read about what’s happened and will be happening. Also, I have an additional thanks to add as a very large number of the people I now consider good friends are so because of RJ’s books. Clearly his writing has had a large impact on the world even though a lot of people might not have known who he was. 😦

Notes from Dragonmount where RJs blog was hosted
George R.R. Martin’s tribute

Posted in General, Life, Reading, Wheel of Time | Leave a Comment »