The Wheel of Time turns and Ages come and go, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth returns again.
Author: Robert Jordan
Category: Epic Fantasy
Publication Date: November 15th, 1990
A classic tale of a village boy that is more than what he seems. Of good versus evil and lots and lots of walking.
For as long as this book was, I don’t seem to have a lot to say about it.
I had heard so many times that Jordan is long winded and I prepared myself for ridiculously long descriptions of seemingly inane things. That may be the case in future books but I didn’t feel like this book was overburdened by description. It was slow-moving, certainly, but in a way that seemed like it was more about making the events and the character development happen organically rather than simply trying to up the page count.
For the story itself, it did start getting repetitive at times. Run from monsters, stop at an inn, run from more monsters, stop at an inn. Rinse and repeat. Still, it managed to move the story along at just the right pace to keep me interested.
As for characters, Rand is unsurprisingly the cliché village boy that is told in vague terms that he has some “destiny.” I still liked him though. Maybe that is because I know that this is one of the books and thus he is one of the characters that has influenced the past few decades of fantasy books so in a way is a progenitor of much of what I have read.
My only gripe on characters were two of the main female characters, Nynaeve and Egwene. What condescending twats!
I kind of think that they were supposed to be “strong” female characters and I guess they are but they were so incredibly condescending to Rand, Mat, and Perrin for really no reason at all that I just wanted to slap them. Women can be strong without treating men like idiots!
Oddly, the one female character that could arguably have reason to condescend based on experience and actual wisdom, Morgaine, didn’t do this. She made her wisdom clear and instructed the boys certainly but in a much less bitchy way.
Reading this book, it is so easy to see how it has influenced the past few decades of fantasy writing. Half a dozen series come to mind immediately that I saw elements of in this book (though none so strongly as that of Sword of Truth).
I did enjoy this book but I am having difficulty rating/judging it by itself because I know that I have many more books to go in the series and this book read like it. Unlike many first installments to series that can stand on their own in the event the rest of the series is never published, this one I don’t think does. There is kind of a conclusion at the end but the story is by no means done.
So I’m gonna stick with a 7 because I do think the story deserves it but I want to withhold more praise until I have read more of the series.
I know this is a really popular series so I would love to hear other people’s opinions!