Rereading the Wheel of Time Part 1 of X

I might love the The Wheel of Time but I don’t always like it….

I had intended to embark upon this project much much earlier but it has proved more difficult than I initially thought. I seriously doubt I can pound my way through 9 more novels in the next 2 months but I will definitely be pushing forward as hard and fast as I can. I will try to post my experiences in reading things as I move along. This is less about a full straightforward review than it is about my experiences in this endeavor.

It would be almost silly of me go ahead a review The Eye of the World. The book has been discussed frequently in various locales across the internet and print and has been seen through rosy glint of nostalgia hued vision as well as the harsh light open criticism. It virtues and its flaws have been covered just about everywhere. I touched upon The Eye of the World’s importance to me in my post on the anniversary of Robert Jordan’s death, it is the novel introduced me to fantasy as a teen, and I won’t cover that again here. I will say that the community that spawned around the series, particularly wotmania, is what would eventually lead me to this blog and I’m not even sure it would exist without my having lurked so long on the Other Fantasy boards.

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Tor is Evil

I mentioned earlier this week that the Prologue for The Towers of Midnight is available for purchase (bn, amazon).  There is also a later chapter, a product of the recent Great Hunt game, over on Sanderson’s website. Also, the pretty awesome book trailer (see below).  But what does all of this mean?  That the wait for the next month before the book is actually out is going to be agonizing!

Yes I bought and read the Prologue.  This was a probably a mistake since I don’t really need to be more excited but I did and I am.  Sure, Perrin’s brooding grates some but I’m hoping (expecting?) we’ll finally get some resolution in the regard over the course of this novel.  But the rest of the prologue…man…that was just mean Tor…..downright mean.  Sure you guys can’t push up that pub date about 30 days or so?  Come on.  You know you want to.

Reminiscence and a Thank You

It isn’t perfect but it is something I’ve wanted to say, and should have said, when Robert Jordan passed away back in September of 2007.  I don’t think my attempt back then really reflected what I felt.  In fact I didn’t talk too much about it when it happened, probably because it hadn’t really hit home or because I had too much going on in my own life at the time.  HoweverLeigh Butler’s re-read of The Wheel of Time over at Tor.com got me thinking about things again.  I’d been meaning to write something trying to put my thoughts to together.  What I got was this.  Hit the jump for the text or ignore this as you wish…

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Robert Jordan Review Nostalgia!

Adam of the Wertzone has a review of Robert Jordan’s Eye of the World. It is pretty even handed in its complements and its criticism and well worth a look for those who’ve never read the series.  Adam does point out the strong Tolkein influence of Jordan’s work and I would add that I think Jordan uses that as an in for the first novel and departs somewhat as the series progresses.  He also points in his review to Terry Brooks as an author who ripped off Tolkein but whenever I think of major Tolkien ripoffs I think of Dennis McKiernan’s The Iron Tower.  As derivitive as Brooks work is his later books (specifically some of the ‘modern’ ones) at least show some originality and never really swing into the heavy handed wholesale copying of McKiernan’s Iron Tower.

If you’ve never read the book, or read it a while ago, head on over a take a look.

It Has Begun

As I continue down my Wheel of Time audiobook odyssey, I’m currently about midway through The Dragon Reborn, it’s nice to know that Brandon Sanderson has, at last, started work on the concluding volume .

From Brandon Sanderson’s Blog:

There was a powerful moment there for me when I got to write those words “The Wheel of Time turns. . . .” Mr. Jordan, despite his preparations for the book, didn’t actually write those words that have started each book in the series. I guess he figured he didn’t need to, since they’ve been the same since book one. He knew that his time might come soon, so he focused on more important scenes.

That left me being able to write the opening paragraph to chapter one. (Though, of course, there will be a prologue. While those words won’t start the book, I decided that they would be the way that I started work on it.)

It has begun.

Now, who is willing to put money on who wins the race between Duke Nukem Forever and A Memory of Light?

A Note: Current Reads and RJ’s Wheel of Time

Both my current reads are going to take me a little longer than usual.  Wolfe’s Shadow and Claw is a re-read inspired by a series of posts by Dylanfanatic of wotmania’s Other Fantasy message board.  I’ve been a lurker on the wotmania boards for some time a DF is a real smart guy and his in depth reading of Wolfe’s fiction made be feel like a bit of a schlep.

Check out his posts on Shadow of the Torturer, Claw of the Conciliator, Sword of the Lictor, and Citadel of the Autarch for some fantastic insight into to these lesser known (by the world at large, at least) literary classics. I also recommend this essay (pointed out by DF) by Neil Gaiman called “How to Read Gene Wolfe.” Or, if Gene Wolfe isn’t you cup of tea, at the least check out OF Blog of the Fallen for a mature look at new and classic “genre” fiction.

The Orphan’s Tale: In the Night Garden is more of a lyrical fantasy, in a similar prose style to Patricia A McKillip.  The way the story works, as smaller oral tales told within an over-arching background tale (like 1001 Nights), I can go at a slower pace.  I have yet to decide if the simile heavy prose is something I can stomach to make it to the second book.

On another note I’ve, *sigh*, started a re-read of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time.  Re-read isn’t exactly the right word since I picked up the unabridged audiobook version of Eye of the World and might end up doing the same for the rest.  Anyway to keep with my wotmania theme I would likely to highly recommend this chapter-by-chapter read through of the book.  Hopefully it will continue with the rest of the series.  This thread, summarizing Sanderson’s (the man chosen to finish the series) comments on re-reading the series is also worth looking into as one returns to “Randland.”