This is NOT a review of the Wheel of Time books. I suppose you can call it a reaction blog... For it is a collection of my live reactions and thoughts to reading the Wheel of Times series for the first time.
The thoughts were originally shared on Twitter and have now been collected here for everyone's convenience. These are my full reactions from the second Wheel of Time book, with some post-read writerly thoughts at the very end.
To gain better understanding of what this is all about, please refer to this blog.
This time, I divided my readings up into days. This part 1 chronicles the first half, we meet Selene in part 2, and in part 3 we finish with a grand battle and my final thoughts.
Let the reading begin!
The Great Hunt
Day 1 : The day it all began, again.
Starting at the beginning. The real beginning - the dedication.
Does anyone know the story behind this dedication...?
It makes me think hurricane disaster. But I’m not familiar, and since I’m reading Wheel of Time for the first time, I'm still too paranoid about potential spoilers to google “Robert Jordan”.
A kind soul on Twitter referred me to this reddit post about the dedication. The nice person also warned me there were the Great Hunt spoilers in the thread, so I'm saving that for later.
Uhh this prologue is awesome!
I had been warned about long prologues but this one is not that long and besides, it’s great! I enjoy the voice and seeing the dark side! (I can now confirm that they do NOT have cookies, that was a lie)
The people watching in this section is also great. I love people watching. This is great. And I have a feeling we will run into all of the people described here. The woman from Illian, the two Aes Sedai, and “The man who called himself Bors”
Wait... Robert Jordan did it again.
Bors... Bors.... Boris?
Uhhh okay I’ve got you! So... Theory here:
The Forsaken will escape from their hold in Shayol Ghul. And it will be up to Rand (I still think he is the Dragon) and his companions (100 of them?) to lock them back again? Is that what’s going to happen??
I swear that’s the spitting image of my lad Mat! Couldn’t have done it better me-self.
Followed by an unmistakable description of Perrin. And then, Rand, of course.
This is the equivalent of wanted posters, but for criminals to use, in a fantasy setting.
Uhhh!! Very important information!!
So Rand is NOT the Dragon..... but he WILL be...?? How does one become the Dragon...?
I wonder how this will play out... when will he realise? Will he have to actively seek to become a dragon, because then I fear this world is doomed.
Hahaha! We can confirm!
I get nervous every time Rand touches his sword!
I hope he learns how to use it in this book. He is in dire need of lessons.
So, the man who calls himself Bors, is from Tarabon.
I’ve consulted my map and this means that we will likely get to visit the west coast, on the other side of Two Rivers! Does this also mean we will visit Two Rivers again...?
Who will it be? Who will make the journey home?
Hold up! Lan is as tall as Rand?? I missed something major. I was likely too star-struck by Moiraine at the time when he was first introduced, because I always imagined Lan to be on the shorter side but not any less badass for that...
It almost makes me sad to read that he is tall, even though it makes sense... I was quite fond of my inner image of a short badass hero.
You and me both, Lan. You and me both.
Except it’s a whole book ago for me.
I'm also very pleased to see Lan training Rand in sword fighting. He needs all of the held he can get, especially on the fighting front, and there is no better teacher than Lan.
A sword with 3000 years of tales.... did Rand’s sword, by any chance belong to Rand’s real father...?
And is he descended from the last Dragon Reborn aka Kinslayer...?
That’s my theory for now.
A little worn but wearable... yes Rand, but for how long? You’ve got a dozen books ahead of you, and I suspect that each book doesn’t take place over a day or two, so you should be happy with new shoes and clothes.
Pulling out stitchings looks easy, huh, Rand?
Well, it is easy, but now I really look forward to see Rand try.
Now they’ve all got bows!! This archer is very please to hear it, and we also finally get a description of a bow!!
So, in Rand’s case, at least, we’re dealing with a longbow.
That he made himself...? Gosh, I thought they were only there a month? Also that tough a draw seems very impracticable in battle.
Yes you do that, Rand. Because that has gone so well for you in the past...
Day 2 : The day Moiraine got her own POV chapter!
Is this Mat’s dagger? It looks like Mat’s dagger! Are we going to see Mat my lad for the first time in this book?
I’m ready! Take me to him!
Robert Jordan back at it again with his names that are sorta familiar but juuust different enough.
He is done with Matt, and Randall, and all of that. We’re going Presidential now. USA kind of presidential.
I agree that Rand’s bow does not seem practical and certainly can’t be used on horseback, but this is iffy. Shape of bow does have something to do with it, but shortbow does NOT mean light draw.
If he’s skilled enough, Rand should be able to loosen the same amount of arrows.
That’s a really lovely piece of description of the Two Rivers folk.
There is a strange familiarity in stubbornness.
After everything you’ve been through, Rand, you should know to listen to your instincts by now.
Your gut tells you something is off? LISTEN to it! The rest of us are all listening to your gut. Join us... please!
No, Rand. You haven’t been listening to sweet Loial. I’ve been paying attention, though, so I can tell you that the city the Ogiers made was destroyed long ago.
This is a man-made city.
Oh.... Pragmatic Perrin has lost his confidence with the wolf eyes. He is distancing himself from the rest of the world.
It’s okay Perrin, it’ll be alright.
I need a Perrin chapter STAT!
THIS is why I worry about the TV version.
Without his internal monologue, if you just read what he is saying aloud, Rand often comes across mean to his friends.
I worry he will come across as rude, annoying, even sexist to modern audiences.
I hope they find a way around that.
Egwene just threatened to set his breeches on fire!!
....yes, Rand... that’s what I worry modern audiences will do to you unless the scriptwriters of this upcoming show find a way to save you ass and convey your inner thoughts to viewers.
Uff. Egwene. That hit hard.
She does have a point Rand. You’ve been known to do similar things.
So while I’m all for you heading out into the world and letting the Pattern spin your destiny, this is also why I worry.
Scary! And no Rand, I fear that he is not mad, simply possessed and able to see the wielders of the One Power or something.
Scary indeed. Especially with everyone in that dungeon becoming darker and m more evil by the day.
Wait what???? Moiraine???? This is a Moiraine chapter???
Sound the fanfare!!
(Oh.... that’s why the chapter heading is a horn, huh? I mean probably not but I’ll take it)
Moiraine’s inner dialogue is everything I had hoped it would be. I’m really enjoying this inner look at her!
My mother sometimes compared one of the characters in my book to Moiraine.
Now I get why. There is a certain tone... a certain calm.
I already like Anaiya.
Sees people for who they are
As who they want to be seen?
Means what she says?
I'm a fan.
The sisterly love between Moiraine and the Amyrlin Seat is great!
I had a feeling that they were old friends. There was always some half hidden kindness in Moiraine’s tone when she spoke of the Amyrlin Seat.
I adore this.
Yo!!! Sisters!! What are you planning? Let me in on your secret!
Day 3 : The day we got a crazy amount of POVs in one chapter
Whitecloaks!! Whitecloaks are coming!
Though why they would be so far north, I don’t know. Did they follow the Aes Sedai or something...?
Huh? This is also a Moiraine chapter. I did not expect that with the way the last one ended. And then we are right back in the same scene...
So I suppose we will now be told what they were plotting?
Oh... now I almost wish it was kept a secret from us. At least for a little while longer.
I CALLED IT!
It will happen. When, we don’t know. But it will happen!
Moiraine Sedai, that all sounds great, but.... I don’t think it’s going to go that smoothly. It all seems too easy and you have the horn but who is to hunt it...?
I’ll remind you that this book is called The Great Hunt. Not much of a hunt if Rand simply rides in with the horn.
What...? A POV change in the middle of a chapter...? I did not expect that.
Especially when the last chapter was Moiraine too. I don’t know how I feel about that.
If we start changing POV mid chapter we’re moving towards a Malazan kind of confusing...
I’ll believe that. The Whitecloaks give me creeps.
Different thought but: I’ve been thinking about the gender roles in this world. Are the Whitecloaks purely men? Like the Aes Sedai are purely women and we're in a Queendom and not a kingdom..?
What???? Another POV change mid-chapter - in the SAME chapter??
Okay yes. It’s getting confusing.
(Oh and is that Whitecloak we just saw the same one who was out for Perrin and Egwene...? Cause that name, Bryar, seems familiar. I do not particularly want to meet him again).
*GASP* did she just...?? Burn a book????
Plus, she “casually” threw it into the fire. Casually?? How often does she do this for it to be a casual occasion?
Okay, this Liandrin Sedai character is on my hitlist now! Book burner!
(that’s as close as I’ll get to call her a witch)
A POV change, AGAIN?? This is the fourth POV in this single chapter....
Is this how it’s going to be going forward? Having to rewire myself and figure out where we are and who we are every few paragraphs?
Trollocs! And that right after hearing about the Black Ajar. I mean we knew from the prologue that they existed, but still...
I wonder how Trollocs get into this well protected city with all of these Aes Sedai around...
This might be a new chapter but it’s like I missed half a book. What’s going on? Is this another dream? It’s gotta be another dream
Otherwise, I'll feel cheated, having skipped so much action to get to this point.
Okay, it’s a dream. Phew.