It has been absolutely delightful rereading the last two books (Volumes 11 and 12) in the "Wheel of Time" series. Both of these books were written byIt has been absolutely delightful rereading the last two books (Volumes 11 and 12) in the "Wheel of Time" series. Both of these books were written by Brandon Sanderson, who was selected to finish the series upon the death of 'Robert Jordan' (James Oliver Rigney, Jr.) in 2007. I have to give Sanderson his due too, he has really done a great job of bringing this magnificent series to its long-awaited conclusion. I thought it would be good to read both The Gathering Storm and Towers of Midnight before the final volume, A Memory of Light, is released.
It is my understanding that Sanderson has had at his disposal all of the notes, outlines, and other plot- and character-related materials that Jordan had compiled about how the series was to be finished before his death. In many respects, I actually enjoy Sanderson's plotting and pacing in these last two novels more than Jordan's. Anyway, the pace and suspense is clearly ratcheting up, and one can see that one ginormous convergence is almost upon us. I also understand that the final book, A Memory of Light, to be released in early January 2013 and is nearly 1,000 pages. Wow! I can't wait to dive in and see what happens and how it all ends! After all, I've been reading this series for something over twenty years!...more
I just finished rereading the Towers of Midnight, and can declare that I am more than ready for the final offering, A Memory of Light, that is due toI just finished rereading the Towers of Midnight, and can declare that I am more than ready for the final offering, A Memory of Light, that is due to be released in early-January 2013. I have been reading the "Wheel of Time" series since it was first gifted to all of us by the late Robert Jordan in 1990, with the publication of the first book in the series, The Eye of the World.
Jordan, the pen-name of James Oliver Rigney, Jr., created this incredibly detailed and complex world and a myriad of amazing characters through the course of a series of eleven novels describing an epic struggle between the forces of Light (Good) and Dark (Evil). Upon Jordan's death in 2007, fantasy author Brandon Sanderson was brought in by Jordan's widow to finish the tale using Jordan's copious notes and outlines, and I must confess that Sanderson has truly done a superb job in bringing the story to an astoundingly exciting climax in the Towers of Midnight.
While part of me is sad to know that this series--a part of my life for over twenty-two years--is coming to an end, the other part of me is giddy with excitement at knowing that soon--very soon--I will be reading the final installment, and that "Tarmon Gai'don" is upon us and 'Rand al'Thor' is finally ready to confront the 'Dark Lord'....more
As I turned the last pages of A Memory of Light so many things were racing through my mind. First, it struck me that this is the end of an era, as I hAs I turned the last pages of A Memory of Light so many things were racing through my mind. First, it struck me that this is the end of an era, as I have been religiously reading and rereading this series for over 20 years. Second, this is absolutely one of the best fantasy series I have ever read, and I am profoundly and utterly amazed and astonished at the quality of the writing, and complexity of the plotting and characterization from the first volume to this, the fourteenth volume, A Memory of Light. Finally, I don't know that I have ever read one single book that has run me through the emotional 'ringer' the way that A Memory of Light has; and like Life, there are moments of great joy and happiness as well as deep sadness and grief. I cannot begin to tell you how many times while reading this book I simply stopped reading and quietly wept for a few moments. It was, all in all, a simply glorious reading experience!
I am not going to give one word away about how A Memory of Light wraps up this grand journey that all of us have been on for nearly two decades. Suffice it to say that A Memory of Light is nearly 1,000 pages of near perfection, and we should all stand up and bellow at the top of our lungs, Tai'shar Jordan! Tai'shar Sanderson!, as they have given us a grand story and an ending for the ages. Obviously, much of A Memory of Light revolves around 'Tarmon Gai'don' (The Last Battle), and the battle scenes are riveting and make the book incredibly difficult to put down.
As any devoted 'Wheel of Time' fan, I went into A Memory of Light with just a tiny bit of trepidation. After all, this series has finally come to an end, and how it ended was important to me. Now that I've finished my first reading of A Memory of Light, I really don't know what I was worried about. Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson have crafted a finale that is emotionally powerful and so intellectually satisfying that it very nearly belies words. Oh, I'm sure that there will be those that will want to change this or that, but not me. I really do think it has ended just as it should, and I honestly don't think I'd change a thing. I can't wait to reread A Memory of Light again soon, as I'm sure that upon a more careful second reading it will become an even more meaningful experience for me.
For something over twenty years this series has been a meaningful part of my literary life. At first it was really just great fun--a wonderfully complex and complicated bit of fantasy fiction to enjoy as each installment came out. Now, however, I am beginning to realize that just as Tolkien was inspired through his fiction and poetry to work on developing a mythology for the English peoples, I think Robert Jordan challenged himself to craft a mythology for an American time. Nation-building, economic and environmental pressures, political machinations, faith and belief systems, cultural diversity, it is all there. Mostly the 'Wheel of Time' is the story of men and women and the human condition and the choices we make.
There are no endings, and never will be endings, to the turning of the Wheel of Time.