Sephi's Musings

Discussion in 'Wheel of Time Discussion - Books 1-8' started by Sephi Vardin, Aug 2, 2019.

  1. Sephi Vardin

    Sephi Vardin

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    This'll be a thread where I just post my opinions of the first 8 books, as I read them. I'm currently on book 6, lord of Chaos. So to start this thread off right...

    I'm going to copy/paste various things I've said on reddit about the series so far and see how many fans get their pitchforks and wish to lynch me! XD (I joke this because my opinions tend to be controversial. I actually plan to use this thread to interact with all of you- feel free to tell me if you agree with me or disagree with me as we discuss my own opinions and yours!)

    Posted by
    u/SephiVA

    1 month ago


    Dragon Reborn
    [​IMG]
    I read the first two books. The first book I finished in two weeks. The second book I finished in one week (just finished it yesterday).. I must ask, is the third book going to be faster paced? I have it already but I am just worried that what felt like the first two books were very slowly paced and I wish it had all happened within one book, cut out a lot of the extra. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love Rand, Perrin, Egwene, Moraine and friends (Except Mat anyways. He feels underdeveloped and sometimes mildly annoying so far) but I just feel like the story is taking a long time to develop.

    I'm really hoping Dragon Reborn will be a more tightly paced book.


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    Next Post:

    Posted by
    u/SephiVA

    18 days ago


    Books 3 and 4
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    You may have seen my thoughts on books 1 and 2 in a previous post of mine. In short, I liked the first too books due to liking most of the characters, but strongly felt it should have been significantly shorted into a single book, covering the plot of the first two books in a single, more concise story. Overall, the only way I can accept those two books is to have a head canon where it is one single book, the length of the first one, but containing the story shown in the first two.

    WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD FOR DRAGON REBORN AND SHADOW RISING. ALSO WARNING- IF YOU DON'T LIKE FACING WHIPLASH OR GET OFFENDED EASILY- DON'T READ MY POST. JUST KNOW, I LOVED DRAGON REBORN AND HATED SHADOW RISING. THAT'S THE GENERAL IDEA.



    YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

    The third book is where my opinion begins to change for the better- Dragon Reborn is simply amazing. I loved the characters, the storyline- EVERYTHING. I didn't mind that the pacing was it's typical snail's pace because I was so engrossed in the characters, that I was having a blast from the very beginning to the very end- simply one of the finest books I have ever read!

    This book is vastly superior to the first two books. The slow pacing never even bothered me here. I loved the development for Mat- his good luck with gambling and the like was very charming and amusing! That was an interesting contrast, as in the first two books, he was gradually becoming quite annoying- a welcome change! Perrin has overtaken Rand as my favorite character, though he was my second favorite before anyways. The storyline was interesting and exciting and fun! Also, all the different storylines felt much more connected than they ever did in the great hunt. Just an amazing and addicting read, a thousand times better than the great hunt, and also still better than the first book!

    Egwene facing the trials to be raised to be one of the accepted was pretty well done- but it was with Naenave as well. I was dissapointed we didn't see Elayne's. Mat had his flashback of the ancient trolloc wars and Perrin still has his wolf instincts and just WOW. I hardly saw Rand, my favorite character in the first two books...yet I was LOVING this third book the most so far! Just WOW. Its also made me curious about Mat, a character I had been annoyed about before! Egwene being a dreamer had me excited though her trials were too early to know what they would be for sure yet. I felt bad for Nynaeve and her time in the tangriel becoming accepted! is it weird I had a crush on the Amyrlin Seat during this book? Shes just sexy as a person, I don't know. Something about her.



    Either way- I got through this book fairly quickly- it was hard to ever put the book down, I was addicted to seeing what would happen next with these charcaters and what I would learn next about them, no matter how slow things got- I never minded it because I had finally fallen fully in love with the Wheel of time series!



    The braid tugging and other visual tics do get repetitive and the odd sexism divide between men and women feels dated- but in Dragon Reborn I was only annoyed..it wasn't until the fourth book that I'm growing sick of the sexism (on both gender fronts). "men" or "so and so knows women better than I do" acting as if both genders are different species...just feels forced and is annoying. But those things don't stop me from loving the Dragon Reborn! The ending was an exciting climax as always- though I must admit, anti-climactic in the end with Moraine defeating him so quickly.
    --------------------------------------

    Now we get onto the Shadow Rising. Oh dear lord. This book was 90% filler. This book is utter garbage. A stain on the name "wheel of time". Almost a complete and utter waste of time. I thought the pacing was bad before- but Shadow Rising took it to another level..a full on nose dive, and at the moment I am at Chapter 40 but.. this just feels like no payoff they could possibly give will make what I went through remotely worth it. The plot twists and reveals on where the Aiel and traveling folks came from was cool- but took too long to get there. The sexism divide has reached levels of annoyance that I just want to throw my book and say "MEN AND WOMEN AREN'T AS DIFFERENT AS YOU MORONS THINK! PULL YOUR COLLECTIVE HEADS OUT OF YOUR ASSES AND REALIZE YOU ARE ALL THE HUMAN RACE- THIS IS STUPID!" and just..dear god. It takes forever for anything to happen- its all building up to ANYTHING happening at all most of the time- so much so that no possible pay off could ever be worth THIS.

    The Shadow Rising should be three chapters long. Maybe six, max. And the sad fact is, that is close to not being hyperbole. This should not be such a giant book. (in truth, maybe 16 chapters long?)

    Everything way out stays it's welcome. I would best compare it to the video game- Destiny. Anytime something exciting happens, it way out Stays it's welcome at so much so that when you finally arrived at a new part of the story you are celebrating the fact that something new is actually happening, only for that to way outstay its welcome as well and rinse- repeat. This book is a slog to get through and I am very disappointed. Only Perrin's storyline of seeking to save the Twp Rivers saves this book, so it's sad that they spend a majority the book not focused on him. GOD I hope they don't screw this up too.

    The part of the story where they are on the tower at the beginning was very interesting and had a lot of good ideas but should have been heavily condensed down and shorter, as it overstayed its welcome. Rand's story after leaving tear is especially boring easily the worst part of this book.... while the Revelation should be interesting, it takes entirely too long for me to care at all. Mat feels like he just being dragged along and made into a secondary character again instead of being allowed to do his own thing, for the most part. Even his time getting his memories back felt force and the repercussions (being hanged) felt brief and anticlimactic. Elayne and Nyaeve have their story line being very dragged-out. Again, showing very interesting ideas but dragging them out too much to the point to where I went from highly invested to almost not caring anymore. I know I haven't finished this book- but I resorted to looking up what happens on wikipedia tonight and am 50/50 on throwing this book in the trash where it belongs, and then going to the fifth book. Wash my hands of this entry.



    But I might, reluctantly, finish it. I have had to force myself to even pick up and read this book several times, needing frequent breaks. It's very VERY hard to get myself to even care anymore- nay..even worse..I find myself actively NOT wanting to read this. It feels like a chore- a job- work. This isn't fun, not even remotely.

    -------------------------

    Posted by
    u/SephiVA

    5 days ago


    "The Fires of Heaven" - awwww here it goes!
    [​IMG]
    Hey again! Me again! SPOILERS AHEAD, of course. AND IF YOU GET EASILY OFFENDED BY OPINIONS- BLOOD AND ASHES- DON'T READ THIS POST. THIS IS JUST MEANT FOR CIVIL DISCUSSION TO SHARE MY OWN OPINIONS WHILE ASKING FOR YOURS. NOT FOR PEOPLE TO LOSE THEIR FLAMING MINDS!

    For those who followed me previously I was the guy who:

    First made a post saying I liked the first two books (Eye of the World and the Great Hunt) but felt they were too slow- and got people divided on whether I would like the third book or not. I liked the characters, but was very annoyed with the slow pacing for the first two books. I said that if the two books were cut in half in length- and then merged together as one book... that was the head canon I accepted. I liked the books, but the pacing stopped me from loving them. Or perhaps something more? I'm not even sure.

    On my second post: loved the third book (The Dragon Reborn) and hated the fourth book (The Shadow Rising)- and everyone was so angry that I hated the fourth book, they hardly noticed that i loved the third one. I didn't mind the slow pacing of the third book due to it being so exciting and me loving the characters so much-" the Dragon Reborn" is where I truly began to fall in love with the series. A masterpiece of literature, in my opinion.

    "The Shadow Rising", I felt was 90% filler, with the plot not truly starting until Chapter 40- and I loved chapter 40 onwards. (The comments was where I started reading Chapter 40 onwards, and loved the remainder of the book and wished it had been the entire book- the first 39 chapters felt like they should have been 10 to 16 chapters long at max for how little it did for the ongoing story- I love lore, but this just made the plot screech to a halt, which I didn't like.) the book felt like pure garbage to me, for the first 39 chapters. It wasn't just the pacing- I just felt the book wasn't holding my interest. I was supremely bored and had to force myself to finish the book at all.

    Now onto "the fires of heaven" - my third post here. Hopefully less controversial than my last two posts. lolThis time around, i looked at the book differently than ever before. If I looked at it as a stand alone book- this was the the second worst book so far, next to "The Shadow Rising" because anyone who picked up this book on it's own would be far more lost than if they started with "the Great Hunt" or even "The Dragon Reborn". Even if they weren't lost- this story doesn't contain enough self-contained meat to be good on it's own merits.

    Yet- and this is the funny part- I absolutely love this book.

    I decided to look at it as the most recent chapters of one massive storyline. Like if you were reading chapters 500-800 of a long running Japanese manga, for example. When considering it NOT a book but just the most recent chapters of a previous book- it's amazing!

    I love these characters, I am enjoying seeing where they are going, and I found myself once again unable to put the book down, just like I felt when I was reading "The Dragon Reborn". It's funny, my favorite character was Rand in books 1 and 2, with Perrin second. I found Mat annoying in book 2. Then, Book 3 came along, and I loved Mat- and Perrin was my favorite with Rand second, and stayed there! Now with this book- Perrin is hardly in the book, yet I am having a blast seeing Mat finally come out of Rand's shadow truly- and not just for his gambling, but as a true General in his own right! I absolutely loved the development this gave mat!

    As of now, I'm at the part where the Whitecloaks and the "prophet" are fighting the same ship, both for Nynaeve and Elayne. I'm bloody laughing like a mad man! A war/invasion... without realizing that both sides are trying to help her! this is a riot! I will admit, this book has caused me to grow to severely dislike Nynaeve, but to be fair- she always midly annoyed me while interesting me.. but this book may have just cemented me wishing she would just be killed off =\. Still, I love Elayne as always and this is just a blast of a book so far!

    I know that just like when I gave my review of "the Shadow Rising", I had only read the first 39 chapters and I ended up finishing it in the comments- but i felt the need to do the same again here. Take that for what you will here, at least this time I'm on...I think chapter 47 or 48? Regardless, like before- I'll state the rest of my opinions- as I read- in the comments.

    Thanks for anyone who reads my posts- I absolutely love being in a such a passionate fandom who voices their opinions- be it against me or thinking similarly to me- because I absolutely love giving my own and sharing them with this amazing fandom to this brilliant series!


    Edit: there's many other things I have said on Reddit, but I wanted to keep it limited to these for now, as an introduction. I figure I'll say the rest of what I have to say..in real time with all of you. (Though I may still end up repeating things I will say on reddit as well)
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2019
  2. Thaddius al'Guy

    Thaddius al'Guy Soldier Forum Moderator

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    It's funny. When I was younger, I really loved TDR and really disliked TSR, but as I got older, it flipped for me. Shadow Rising gave a lot of substance to the world, a lot of intricate looks into a lot of cultures that we had only heard about up until now, and I loved it.
     
  3. Sephi Vardin

    Sephi Vardin

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    I love the deeper lore to it all, and I'm a nut for lore. But I prefer to read that on the side, as a companion novel or on a wiki or on youtube. Because when in the book itself to that large of an extent, I felt that it slowed the plot down to a crawl, which really killed it for me.
     
  4. Thaddius al'Guy

    Thaddius al'Guy Soldier Forum Moderator

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    That's the essence of it though. That's the type of writer that Jordan was. He wants you to see what he wants, so you get extensive details about everything.
    Speaking of Companions, I suggest NOT looking in the WoT Companion guide until you're finished with the series. It's 100% meant for after completion/re-reads. You will spoil yourself extensively by reading entries.
     
  5. Sephi Vardin

    Sephi Vardin

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    The wikia has already accidentally spoiled several things for me, but I won't say what because it's little bits here and there. I just like to go to the wiki to see pictures of the characters...
     
  6. Aduiavas Ida

    Aduiavas Ida Aes Sedai Mistress of Revels - Europe Forum Moderator

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    Honestly, Shadow Rising is good for two things. Maybe three.

    Rhuidean. The wedding.... And the Aiel in general :)

    But I agree, the pacing could be better. Sadly, the 5th book is not much better in that regard (small spoiler)

    Rand and the Aiel SLOWLY walking to Cairhien, and then Elayne and Nyneave travelling VERY SLOWLY. in Amadicia... Oh, and let's not forget Siuan, Leane and Min... The battle of Cairhien also take SO LONG...
     
  7. Tobias Carawin

    Tobias Carawin Citizen

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    I don't think that anyone is going to flip out on you because of your opinions. I can understand and sympathize with everything you have said. Many of the books are controversial as far as content and pacing. Many of the people I have tried to show the series to have never pushed beyond The Eye Of The World. This is mainly due to pacing and the style in which RJ writes. I actually like his pacing although there are some spots that we all can agree are to long.
    I have read the series at least 15 times. Each re-read brings more than just a better understanding of the story. RJ had a knack for hiding the subtlest hints and meanings within each story line. Most of which you will not catch on your first read. If you think you are hooked now, just wait til your first re-read.
     
  8. Sephi Vardin

    Sephi Vardin

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    I actually liked the fifth book, funnily enough. I admit though, it was quite slow paced and aside from a few brief moments of major events.. not much happened for the amount of pages It took lol.

    Though to be fair, the font size was larger than any of the books before it and after it. Probably to give it the illusion of being the same length xD

    Still, thats why my opening post here had less to say about the 5th book itself: not much happened overall.

    People were quite mad over my dislike of the fourth book especially, on reddit lol.

    and I may or may not reread. I probably will, but probably just my favorite parts lol
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2019
  9. Sephi Vardin

    Sephi Vardin

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    aaaaad Egwene is currently on my shit list for not telling Rand where Elayne is. UGH makes me want to wring her neck! And she stupidly has assumptions on the reason instead of using her own two ears. From This Moment onwards in the book, any Bloodshed on those two Nations is on her hands, in my eyes. The stupid, stupid girl! UGHHHH.

    And she has just shattered his trust for essentially no reason!!!! UGH she pisses me off!!!

    If I were Rand, I wouldn't have let it stop there. I would have confronted her up front and told her immediately that any Bloodshed in andor would be on her hands if she didn't tell me!!! For all this series' sexist claims of men being woolheaded, shes just shown herself to be more wooldheaded than anyone else thus far!
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
  10. Sephi Vardin

    Sephi Vardin

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    I like that stilling and gentling can now be healed. But I feel like the pacing of Lord of chaos is ridiculously slow. The book is all right, but they really need to get on with it. They needed to get on with it probably 20 chapters ago, at least. A sloth or a turtle would tell them they are going too slow compared to them

    edit: wait. Okay, Taim training the men in the one power, stilling healed, Mat to save Elayne, Morgase siding with the whitecloaks AND Egwene becoming the Amarylin seat announced within a few chapters of each other?! Okay, depending on what the next few chapters do, this might switch to my favorite book in the series!


    edit 2: actually thinking back on some of the other things I liked about this book, this might quite already be my favorite book in the series thus far! (regardless of pacing issues)

    edit 3: ending was very anticlimactic, in a manner of speaking. We went after the weather tangreal I didnt care about instead of putting Elayne on the throne. But the awesome battle at the end to save Rand made up some for it! Its the second best after Dragon Reborn
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2019
  11. Sephi Vardin

    Sephi Vardin

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    So..is this site dead or what?
     
  12. Aduiavas Ida

    Aduiavas Ida Aes Sedai Mistress of Revels - Europe Forum Moderator

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    Not dead :) I enjoy reading your musings, but I find it hard to respond without spoiling it ;)

    So far, I am in total agreement with you when it comes to the pacing...
     
  13. Jocasta Braithe

    Jocasta Braithe Novice

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    yeah I'm totally reading along but I don't want to say anything that will ruin your enjoyment!

    I also thought it was silly that Egwene wouldn't tell Rand where Elayne was. I wish people would trust each other more.
     
  14. Thaddius al'Guy

    Thaddius al'Guy Soldier Forum Moderator

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    I'll chime in with a third to say that we're reading, just don't wanna spoil. It's so friggin easy to spoil.
     
  15. Sephi Vardin

    Sephi Vardin

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    Been mostly skimming book 7, otherwise this would be unreadable. Because I cannot read a single chapter this book without heavily skimming. This book is pointless so far (on chapter 25). I see why people call it the start of the slog that lasts until book 11... this book feels like nearly a complete waste of my time, even if I had never heard of any slog.

    I confess, in past books I sometimes skimmed descriptions, but still essentially read all of every single book. Book 7 I simply cannot. Skimming is the most I can subject myself to for book 7, for the most part.

    As for the lack of replies topic..seems so odd not to at least comment on if you agree or disagree with things I have said more than you have. Reddit certainly did, so its shocking that an actual wot community is being silent. Should be easy to do and avoid spoilers, efortless even. But I wont press that matter until I have finished this book and the 8th book, I suppose.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
  16. Thaddius al'Guy

    Thaddius al'Guy Soldier Forum Moderator

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    If you're having trouble with the book, I'd suggest to go at least read the chapter summaries we have in the library here.

    As for spoilers, it's tougher to discern where spoilers begin and end when you've completed the series. I have to actively look up when discussing as not to out important story elements.
     
  17. Sephi Vardin

    Sephi Vardin

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    I am forcing myself to skim read book 7. It means I still mostly follow the story, while having more detailed information than a summary would give me, as in a way...I am still reading the actual book itself (even if often times focusing mostly on reading dialogue). If books 8 and 9 are like this, I will do the same. That way, I can actually have opinions on the book itself and take pride in it.

    I am a fan of wheel of time and wish to experience the world..not just a summary. Though I appreciate the offer.

    To me, it simply doesnt count if I only read a summary. I must buckle down and do what I am, at least. I bought books 7, 8, and 9 already so I will get my money's worth and besides, I was forewarned that a slog exists. So I could be prepared if they were right, while open to if they were wrong.
     
  18. Thaddius al'Guy

    Thaddius al'Guy Soldier Forum Moderator

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    The slog is only what you make of it. Crossroads of Twilight was the only slog for me. If you let everyone else convince you it, it will be true.
     
  19. Juliya Karisu

    Juliya Karisu Accepted Forum Moderator

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    I agree, the first time I read the series, I never thought it was slow at all because I was so excited about it! Hope you keep enjoying it, Sephi!
     
  20. Sephi Vardin

    Sephi Vardin

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    I didn't hear about the slog until I had already finished the first two books, but I'm going to say that I formed my opinions on my own and merely heard of them and kept them in mind. I didn't magically come up with these opinions just because somebody else held these opinions. Because at the end of the day, that's what they are is opinions. So I was very open to them being wrong and formed my own, on my own.

    For example: fans loved book four. I did not.

    Book 1: okay (6/10)
    Book 2: good (7/10)
    Book 3: masterpiece (10/10)
    Book 4: garbage (3/10)
    Book 5: good (7/10)
    Book 6: great (8/10)
    Book 7: ....why does it exist? (not rating until finished)

    Nobody convinced me of anything. Some even say they felt no slog at all. Honestly, I went in with an open mind that they could be wrong. For example, if I enjoyed this book myself. Then I would simply say that I disagree with them. My problem is, I feel like nothing much is happening in this entire book. Don't get me wrong, there are a few notable moments but they feel overall lackluster

    To be fair, my favorite books are the third and sixth so it would be funny if I like the eighth.(with fourth and 7th being the only two I dislike so far)


    Thanks everyone for your patience with any harsher of my opinions, I promise I still love this series as a whole!
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019