Robert Jordan's "Wheel of Time" series.

Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson, "The Gathering Storm"

2011-07-24 · in Books, Wheel of Time · 251 words

Brandon Sanderson continues the Wheel of Time series after Robert Jordan's death; this is the first of three Jordan-Sanderson books to complete the series, making fourteen in all. The plotting is Jordan's, but the words are largely Sanderson's — and he does an excellent job.

While Sanderson's style is distinctly different from Jordan's — and this is obvious right from the introduction — I didn't find the transition jarring; he does a decent job of the full range of Jordanian fantasy from private thoughts to big set-piece battles. Most of the characters' voices are spot on, with Egwene being especially good, and Rand and LTT being very convincing; Mat changes the most, although I suspect that's because he's just an enormous amount of fun to write.

No complaints about pacing either: things happen. This book is primarily about the reunification of the White Tower — which makes it an Egwene book, really — while Rand attempts to forge an alliance of nations and avoid going insane in the process. The plot comes together neatly, and it's pretty clear where it's got to go next. Sanderson also manages to weave in a few interesting worldbuilding details that I wasn't expecting (e.g. the scene with Cadsuane and the innkeeper); the world's got to change, but it's nice to see more detail of what's there already.

Sanderson clearly has a great deal of love and respect for the series; it's nice to see it in good hands. And yes, of course I'll be buying the next two...

Robert Jordan, "New Spring"

2009-07-08 · in Books, Wheel of Time · 133 words

A prequel to the Wheel of Time books: how Moiraine met Lan, and the start of their quest to find the Dragon Reborn. I've just finished rereading the main WoT sequence, but I'd not bought this book before.

Unfortunately I think this is the weakest of the series by a long way; the very young Moiraine and Lan -- and several other characters -- we see here are so different from their later selves that this isn't really very illuminating with respect to the main story. There are some missed opportunities too: Elyas gets a namecheck but no more; Tam doesn't get mentioned. It's nice to get a bit more detail about how Aes Sedai are raised, but otherwise this is only for WoT completists; you aren't missing anything by skipping this one.

Robert Jordan, the "Wheel of Time" series (reread)

2009-06-25 · in Books, Wheel of Time · 244 words

I ran into the WoT FAQ in mid-2009, which reminded me I'd been meaning to reread the series at some point. This took a bit over three months:

  • The Eye of the World (2009-03-05): I'd forgotten quite how much he'd managed to cram into the first book. Being a slightly older and wiser fantasy reader now, it feels more than a little contrived in places.
  • The Great Hunt (2009-03-10): aha, this feels more like the later books...
  • The Dragon Reborn (2009-03-21): I'd forgotten how suddenly the ending came in this one. Everyone's in Tear, then someone spots Rand and *bam* the prophecy's fulfilled. Hohum. It's fun getting there, anyway.
  • The Shadow Rising (2009-04-06): since the male leads are grating somewhat by this point, I'm rooting for Nynaeve on this reread.
  • The Fires of Heaven (2009-04-23): again, I'd forgotten how much happened in this one.
  • Lord of Chaos (2009-05-12)
  • A Crown of Swords (2009-05-19)
  • The Path of Daggers (2009-05-31): the Ebou Dar battle at the end is really pretty tedious.
  • Winter's Heart (2009-06-08): better than I remembered. The bit with Mat and Tuon at the end is inspired.
  • Crossroads of Twilight (2009-06-22)
  • Knife of Dreams (2009-06-25)

What I'd really like is a making of book, describing how Jordan planned and implemented the series — if nothing else, it's a spectacular feat of literary engineering.

Robert Jordan, "Knife of Dreams"

2008-05-07 · in Books, Wheel of Time · 38 words

By this point I consider the Wheel of Time to be a largely harmless addiction. This is another book that tells in great detail a story of very little happening; I liked the Galad bits, though.

Robert Jordan, "Crossroads Of Twilight"

2003-12-06 · in Books, Wheel of Time · no content

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Robert Jordan, "Winter's Heart"

2003-09-28 · in Books, Wheel of Time · no content

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Robert Jordan, "The Path Of Daggers"

2003-09-24 · in Books, Wheel of Time · no content

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Robert Jordan, "A Crown Of Swords"

2003-09-09 · in Books, Wheel of Time · no content

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Robert Jordan, "Lord Of Chaos"

2003-08-31 · in Books, Wheel of Time · no content

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Robert Jordan, "The Fires Of Heaven"

2003-08-23 · in Books, Wheel of Time · no content

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