Things you liked, or didn't [WHOLE BOOK SPOILERS]

Discussion in 'Wheel of Time Discussion - Books 1-14' started by Aulrick Vendour, Jan 7, 2013.

  1. Aulrick Vendour

    Aulrick Vendour Gaidin

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    If you have yet to finish AMoL, STOP READING RIGHT NOW!
    This thread WILL contain whole book spoilers.

    So, now that we have a thread devoted to the end of the book, it's time we payed attention to the rest of the book as well.
    What parts did you like? What parts didn't you like? Which part surprised you and which was obviouse?
    There are really very few parts I would change, but they DO exist. I will name theme here:
    1. Rand's conversation with Tuon: I felt this was cut short. Rand had her on the run, with his logic, showing her that HE had a bigger right to rule over these lands than she did. She stopped him by saying he lost his right because h had abandoned these lands. This where I'd change things.
    The conversation as I see it in my mind would go like this - Tuon saying he lost his right, because he left the land. His response would have been "So did Arthur Halkwing." She would say that the land has not been abandoned, for they, his decendents, had come back.. Rand's response would bave been "so have I."
    2. Shaidar Haran's death: I don't really know what exactly I'd change with this, except that his end was so... Disappointing. The Hand of the Dark, not like anything they've seen, and he simply ended. No fight, no nothing. Rand came to find him dead, with a lame explanation he was "no longer needed"... What does that even mean?! Why wasn't he needed? He could have fought Rand too.
    3. Padan Fain's end: the moment this white fog appeared in the valley near SG, I said to myself (and Raam) that Fain had finally arrived. It was also clear to me that Mat would fight him, and be somehow immuned to his power because of this ordeal with the dagger. But somehow it was just... Not right. Fain is an Anomaly of the pattern, existing in this time only. Something new and special... And he was killed by Mat like someone waving off a fly. I found it lacking, at best. My thory was that Fain would be used to kill the DO, being the Anomaly that he is, and his already big part against the shadow, with Rand's wounds and the cleansing of Saidin.

    The things I liked most:
    1. Lanfear. She was brilliant in this book. I liked every scene with her. Brilliant plot, fitting to her personality throughout the series.
    2. The walking dead: Mat's use of the people of that town was BRILLIANT! The seemingly innocent chapter a few books back, showing the DO's touch on the world, used in such a grand way... It was beautiful...
    3. Rand's fight with Moridin - I was simply wrong about that. Someone indeed had a theory about Callandor and the true power. It didn't seem right to me. But Callandor's flaw played beautifully at the end. Controlling Moridin, the use of the true power against the DO. The seals breaking just at the right moment. It was a great scene...
    4. The great captains' betrayel - Took me a while to understand what the hell was happening. Bashere, a darkfriend? By the second one, it was clear, but it was still a beautiful scene. I was actually surprised that Egwene hadn't thought one of the Forsaken trying something like that through the world of dreams. At first, the jumping between PoVs annoyed me. But I have to admit that it was a brilliant way to mask the moves of the betraying great captains. A VERY well written strategy.
     
  2. Seaghan Hama

    Seaghan Hama

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    I didn't read any of the spoilers and just want to say, for the record, I hate anyone and everyone that has read this book already! :) Tomorrow can't come fast enough!
     
  3. Aulrick Vendour

    Aulrick Vendour Gaidin

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    We love you too Sea :hug
     
  4. Avelina Ermen

    Avelina Ermen Aes Sedai

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    The big thing that bugged me while I was reading was how some characters were shuffled aside for most, if not all of the book. Like with Thom. I'm assuming he was just trailing behind Moraine the whole time, but he's not mentioned until the last part of the boom. Or, sheesh. 500+ pages before seeing anything from Min aside from mentioning she stood by Rand. For such a massive work, you'd think that some that we spent time with, like Morgase, would at least get a mention in passing. Unless she was mentioned and I missed it? I read rather quickly.

    And, sheesh. Shara. I just about threw my book across the living room screaming at that. I was not expecting it. At all. Fantastic.

    Gawyn. Ugh. From the moment the ring was mentioned, I was like... oh no, this is going to end poorly. I was cursing him every time he was mentioned.

    Egwene was fantastic. Reduced me to locking myself away from my family so I could sob undisturbed. But, it was so wonderfully done.

    I have to agree, Aulrick, Lanfear was fantastic in this book. This is the most I've liked her the entire series.
     
  5. Aulrick Vendour

    Aulrick Vendour Gaidin

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    This is the book 14 forums. No spoiler hides needed. People know if they haven't read it yet, there are spoilers ahead. It's even in the forum description :p

    Morgase WAS mentioned. Once that I can remember, organizing the Andoran refugees that came to help on the battle field.

    The thing is, the vast majority of this book was about the last battle's battle fronts. Those not on the front lines got little attention. Even Rand didn't have much screen time once the battles started (compared with the others).

    I also wanted to mention Mat... He was AMAZING in this book. He was much less of a comic relief then the last two books, yet so much funnier...
    I laughed so hard! He was great.

    But what really others me is that, in the end, the DO has won.

    Oh and about Lanfear: Inoright?!
     
  6. Avelina Ermen

    Avelina Ermen Aes Sedai

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    Good! I'm glad she at least got a mention. I read so quickly that I ended up getting sick. >.> My reread in a month or two will probably show me many things that I missed.

    Oh, I loved Mat in this book. I was particularly disappointed there was no "Honey, I'm home!" sort of thing when he got to Tuon, but the scene was fantastic. I was glad that he stayed true to his character throughout the book and all. If he had come out of the Last Battle all hardened and broody, or something similar, it just wouldn't have been right.

    I don't know that I'd say that the DO ultimately won. True, he wasn't destroyed like Rand originally planned. But, he was properly locked away this time, and I don't think he'd be able to break free again. I'm of the mindset that good cannot exist without an evil to counterbalance it and prove it to be good. Rand's idea of utopia left people without a choice, and the ability to chose good over evil is necessary to humanity.
     
  7. Aulrick Vendour

    Aulrick Vendour Gaidin

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    Indeed. I wouldn't mind it so much, except the DO is unnecessery for this choice.
    The Big White Book describes this in detail. The DO DOESN'T, in fact, CREATE the evil in people. He just enhances it. This is the Father of Lies's great lie. Rand spared his life under the false assumption that without the DO, choice would not be possible. That is a lie.
    It's the other way around. By enhancing the negative emotions, the DO diverts people's choice towards evil, to the point that he can deny it completely from channelers.
    Father of Lies indeed.
    THAT is his victory - making the Dragon think that it is a necessery evil, thus preventing his own destruction.
     
  8. Avelina Ermen

    Avelina Ermen Aes Sedai

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    Ah, see, I haven't read the BWB yet. That's fascinating! I actually like that notion, then. It's not often that the bad guy ultimately wins in the end.
     
  9. Aulrick Vendour

    Aulrick Vendour Gaidin

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    Indeed. Especially when he's winning by losing.
    My theory, before reading the books, was that Rand would use Fain to kill him. Fain is a new evil, specific to this turn of the wheel (according to a Q&A with Jordan), and we've seen it before with Rand's wound and cleansing the taint... Alas, Fain was wasted in this book. After being such a great villain in the past, he was just wasted... While Lanfear shined. Though I felt her end came to easily. Except for that she was AWESOME! What a great character... And it really explains A LOT about her previouse actions, half helping, half harming. She's great.
     
  10. Zashara Sho'am

    Zashara Sho'am The Dark One Aes Sedai Forum Moderator

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    You're wrong. TDO is assumed by people to be the source of evil. Also, I'd say that enhancing the more negative emotions in humans is evil; giving people a reason to do evil (to fight in the name of TDO) is evil. TDO hasn't won. There would be some indication in the book that he had, at least to us readers. There wasn't. You can spin it however you want and parse words to come up with your own ideas, but it doesn't hold up to scrutiny.
     
  11. Aulrick Vendour

    Aulrick Vendour Gaidin

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    I know that people assume he's the source of all evil. As I've explained in my previouse post - THAT's the great lie of the father of lies. We, as readers, have information the characters don't have, but that information is, in fact, still valid. The idea that the DO is not the source of evil is a fact, given to us by Robert Jordan himself. The Big White Book, page 41:
    This is a very clear paragraph - the DO is influencing people's already existing emotions, he does not create them. I also interpret the fact that he pushes people to evil without motivation as taking away their true choice. A person no longer has a choice between acts of good and evil for his personal reasons. He is pushed to do evil for evil's sake.

    But I agree with you that perhaps the word "Won" is not the right one. He more of prevented his loss in the war. Sure, the light can win battles, but not the war (assuming, like Rand, no one would want to create a world in which people had no choice). So the DO's victory is not complete (yet), it is a step of preperation for full victory. Now the only options are the DO's victory and reshaping of the pattern at his will, or a simple delay in battle 'till the next time.
    Anyway you want to look at it, it's hard for me to see this as a victory for the light.

    Which, BTW, I think is brilliant. The fact that we're standing bere debating the meaning of the ending is, I believe, EXACTLY what RJ had in mind when leaving an open ending such as this. That's why I also disagree about a hint regarding the DO's winning. No such clues are needed. Enough clues were given for everyone to interpret the ending as they see fit.
     
  12. Aulrick Vendour

    Aulrick Vendour Gaidin

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    Also welcome to the thread Poonam :p Raam hadn't told me you've read the book already :p
     
  13. Ariadne Davion

    Ariadne Davion Matron Mother of Mischief Aes Sedai

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    Lessie.
    - Loved Graendal. I knew exactly what was happening the moment Lan noted a mistake in the strategy. After all, how many times did we read that Graendal worked in the minds of her enemies and not with her own armies. Soo obvious.
    - Hated Egwene dying, but Gwayn's dead sort of hinted that it would be inevitable. That Cadsuane would be Amyrlin had me cackling (Especially after reading the 'notation' in April's signed copy.). Makes me curious to know what happens next but I suppose i'll be satisfied with what is.
    - I BAWLED in Logain's last scene. I cried for many different ones but his I somehow wanted more.
    - I have concluded that of the Three Rand really is my favorite.
    - Thom trying to construct ballads and Loial his book through out the whole thing was perfect.
    - Moggie getting collared was even more so.
    - Galad trying to take out Demandred made me very happy (Even if Lan finished the deed) and I hope he lives through the wounds even if it leaves it open in the books. That he knows about Rand and lost his hand seems somewhat prophetic in its own way.
    -Fain's death felt anti-climatic to me, but then he was his own form of chaos and it -would- be Mat that would face him. That felt inevitable to me.
    - I really liked Perrin's part in the whole thing.
    - Lanfear was written as perfectly as I felt Graendal was. And I've been bemoaning how Graendal had been written for a while now. They both finally felt right.
    - I kept trying to find Sean's name in the books and the SDS boys but I think that might need a re-read.
    - All the names of people I know and recognize all made me jealous with each next one.
    - Mat and Rand meeting up is (as JD put it) just like Legolas and Gimili. 24-27-42! >.>
    - The defeat of TDO was fitting. I knew he couldn't be killed just as Rand figured out in his last scene of "perfection". It wouldn't be right. TDO is Darkness, perhaps even death, lies, and human's by nature have both. To remove completely... Sealed away proper is better because it balances both the Creator and Destruction. Fitting. I don't think the TDO 'lost' because he is not dead, but he did not win either. I think his place is just as it should be, like our own world. We are our own destruction, not some outside force demanding it to be.
    - Oh! and Pevara and Aridhol are my favorite couple. The moment I realized they were Suian and Gareth die. My previous favorite couple. It hurt less but it hurt never the less. They both had served far more than their purpose and it was right that they died fighting even though it hurt. (Less so than Egwene's death, but never the less).

    And i'm sure there is more.. but yeah..
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  14. Zashara Sho'am

    Zashara Sho'am The Dark One Aes Sedai Forum Moderator

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    Uhh .... Galad didn't take out Demandred.

    Aulrick - I don't see how it's an open ending. The Light won. Rand realized that The Dark One is necessary for the functioning of the wheel/pattern. This is the "Last Battle" because it's the end of that turning of the wheel. The third age is over. The Wheel of Time keeps turning, everything that's happened before will happen again. We know that in the second age the AS created the bore, that would mean that previously there is no bore, that the Dark One's prison is whole. So, when the second age comes around again, TDO's prison would have to be complete. The numbering of the ages is done by men, so they're irrelevant. What's important is that there are 7 ages and they keep repeating.

    1st age -> 2nd age: Golden age (or so we're told); Drill a hole in the Pattern, TDO influences the world -> 3rd age: Akin to a 'dark age'. At the end, we have the "last battle", TDO sealed completely away in a new prison. -> 4th - 7th ages -> 1st age.

    There's no 'ultimate victory' where TDO is killed. It is not possible. TDO is a necessary evil, the world cannot exist without it. Victory is the continuation of life. This is what I (and Raam btw) always assumed would be the ending. Jordan kinda harped on the reincarnation stuff.

    It's a very Hindu concept - reincarnation and having repeating 'ages' (in Hinduism, there are 4) of varying lengths. TDO is the equivalent of the concept of 'maya' or 'illusion', which prevents men from seeing the truth. Only, in this case, TDO takes on a more personal role. TDO casts a veil of illusion over people, making them believe its lies.
     
  15. Kaldam Luciere

    Kaldam Luciere Watson Gaidin Gaidin

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    Wow. Just wow.

    Ok, a few things.

    I belive the general consensus is that Fain was wasted a little. He was such a wonderful little villian, and his story ended rather abruptly. Shame too.

    The Forskaen were all wonderfully written in this book. And there was some depth revealed to them, especially Lanfear, Moridin, and Demandred. Lan's defeat of Demandred was pivotal, because if he hadn't died, he would have won. I felt sad for Moridin, because he revealed his punishment was that he was brought to life again, and Demandred revealed a motivation, that he just wanted to be a hero. Lanfear was brilliant, manipulating with consumate skill. Her death however, was anti-climatic to a degree, but highlighted Perrin's strength.

    I actually got a little misty when Tam lit the funeral pyre, despite a suspicion that Rand was still alive. Really moving moment.

    Mat was hilarious all book. All through it. The scene with Rand was just brilliantly irreverant. Mat finishes the series as my overwhelming favourite character.

    For a minor character, Androl stole every scene he was in. He was extremely well written. His relationship with Pevara was great and he managed some astounding feats (Rescuing Logain, fooling M'Hael TWICE, stealing the seals etc).

    I found Azi shooting with Abell Cauthon, Deoan mentioned, and Kitan healing at Mayene. SDS got mentioned as a book title by Mat I believe as well.

    Anyone else spot any TV.Net references?
     
  16. Toral Delvar

    Toral Delvar Archivist Gaidin

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    there was also a Pylar, and of course Serinia in chapter one. I think that is it
     
  17. Ariadne Davion

    Ariadne Davion Matron Mother of Mischief Aes Sedai

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    Sorry, "trying to" was suppose to be in there. I was tired.
     
  18. Aulrick Vendour

    Aulrick Vendour Gaidin

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    Zash - sure, except the DO, like the creator, is a force OUT SIDE the pattern. That's why the pattern had to balance itself each time it influenced it from it's prison, as Rand explained in the book (which, BTW, was a brilliant explanation to everything happening around him, I think).

    It was an open end in the sense that many things would continue and we don't know how they'll end. Will Cadsuane become Amyrlin? Will Tuon kill Mat? Will the Aiel prophecy Avi saw will come true? Unanswered. It has to be like this so that we know the wheel turns on.
     
  19. Kerna Shedrian

    Kerna Shedrian Aes Sedai

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    Things I liked
    Mat was himself again and I loved all of his PoVs.
    Androl and Pevara.
    Olver :D
    Loial, especially "By the Light, he had a book to finish before he went!"
    The Hinderstap Trap
    I loved that Bela had her role.
    Birgitte still being tied to the Horn. <3
    Siuan and Gareth's deaths. I'm tearing up even now thinking of it. When earlier in the book I thought they were dead I was gutted ... and then they weren't ... and then they were. I'm glad they weren't gone the first time but I had gotten my hopes up. (I just really loved them as a couple, Basically exactly as Arie said "- Oh! and Pevara and [Androl] are my favorite couple. The moment I realized they were Suian and Gareth die. My previous favorite couple. It hurt less but it hurt never the less. They both had served far more than their purpose and it was right that they died fighting even though it hurt")
    Alanna releasing Rand from the bond.
    Aviendha killing Rhuarc :(
    Lanfear's end!
    Cadsuane's end :p

    Things I didn't
    Rand's three's poor acting. I mean seriously ladies, you've lost your Warder not just your lover. You are supposed to act crazed if you want people to think he's dead.
    Everything felt a little rushed. I know it took us 14 books to get here which is hardly rushing but I too would have liked to have savoured a little the minor major characters that got us to the end. Bayle seemed to disappear once Egwene bonded Leilwyn for example. Maybe seeing the damane Elaida? Did Juilin survive? Did we even see Sulin? I mean we saw so much from Androl and Pevara in this book and while I liked them I think I would rather have had a bit less if it meant more of the others.
    Where was bloody Selucia during those attempts on Tuon?
    Ok so the reason Mat had command was that all the Great Captains had been compelled and Mat because of his medallion cannot be. So what does he do? Gives it away for almost all the battle?!?! True it did great things as it was passed around but still. Surely a copy would have worked for what he planned!



    Things I had hoped to see
    I really thought Hurin would be bound to the Horn after that passage in tGH. :(
    A bit more of an epilogue I guess. I was just so sad to leave the characters there like that. I know less is more and I'm being greedy but to see Perrin's reaction when he finds out he's King of Saldaea and a couple of other things.
    That there was nothing about the Tinker's Song. (Unless in my eagerness I skimmed over some abstract phrase in Ila's PoV.)


    I really did devour the book so I do have to go back and savour it and maybe I'll pick up things I missed.
     
  20. Toral Delvar

    Toral Delvar Archivist Gaidin

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    Maybe that is what tipped Cadsuane off? That she knew the three had bonded him?
    I think from Nicola's visions, it was clear that Rand was going to fake his death (that and none of the third age excerpts talked about the Dragon ruling for half a millenium).