July 22, 2013

The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan

I almost feel like it's blasphemy saying this, but I would probably rate this the best book out of the Wheel of Time series so far.  And Jordan didn't write it.  Well, not entirely anyway.  This being the twelfth book in the Wheel of Time series, a lot has happened, and if this is your first visit, you need to go to the beginning.  But anyways, back to my horrible words of this being the best book.  Jordan was a master at creating worlds, but Sanderson appears to be the master at breathing life into them.

Faile is saved but Perrin now has to determine what his next course of action will be.  The end battle is coming near and he is growing into someone he doesn't want to be.  Meanwhile, Mat has many obligations but first he has to get his army to Andor, which is proving difficult with so many Seanchan around.  Rand is harder than ever and securing kingdoms is becoming easier for him, but at a great price.  And he is still troubled by every turn by the Forsaken.  Egwene is still a captive of the White Tower, but she is using it to her advantage, desperate to bring all the Aes Sedai together before it is too late.

Egwene is turning out to be a fantastic character.  She does a lot of things they you just think in your head "you go girl" and she has a resolve that won't be broken.  Nynaeve was quite a bit better in this book too.  Actually, all of the characters were.  You could tell they weren't written by the same author, but it was like Sanderson took the essence of what Jordan was going for and really developed the characters to their full potential.  Yes, they still have flaws, but they grow within the book and they are like real people, instead of cardboard cutouts with repetitive mannerisms. 

The same goes with the storyline.  It is developed.  There is still a lot of detail, but Sanderson handles all the multiple plots and characters with ease but still gets a lot accomplished.  And the pacing is much better as a result.  I think that there still are a lot of mysteries there that could be resolved and haven't been yet, but that's very small compared to what Sanderson was able to accomplish in this one.  He, like Jordan, brings in a lot of characters that we don't necessarily care about, but he also doesn't give enormous lengths of pages to them either.  This story is really focused on the main characters for once, and that helps.  The tone is much closer to what it was in the first book, rather than what the series had turned into.  And while you can tell it is a different voice, it is not disturbing or unwelcome.

I'm very excited to read the next two books in the series (haven't up to this point and decided to reread everything before tackling them).  I know the adventure is almost at a close, but I have to know what happens!

The Gathering Storm
Copyright 2009
783 pages

No comments:

Post a Comment