A Memory of Light – Wheel of Time #14 Review

memory of lightSynopsis: (from Goodreads) The Wheel of Time turns and Ages come and go, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth returns again. In the Third Age, an Age of Prophecy, the World and Time themselves hang in the balance. What was, what will be, and what is, may yet fall under the Shadow.

Wow! Where do I start? Reading the Wheel of Time was my goal for 2019. With not even a day to spare, I accomplished that goal.

Looking at the size of this book (1150 pages), I didn’t quite know what to expect. The Last Battle had to be starting soon and, indeed, this volume is pretty much the all the Last Battle. At first, I wondered how that could be. How could 1100 pages be all one battle? Well, it’s not just one battle. It’s a huge battle being fought in various places with nearly every character coming into play in one way or another. Because of how the Pattern is beginning to unravel, the flow of time has changed, so Rand’s battle against the Dark One seems only a short time to them, but in the rest of the world, days, even weeks pass.

It was really difficult for me to put this book down. I actually stayed awake until 6 in the morning because I just had to keep reading. With so much happening to all the different characters, the thought of putting the book aside and going to sleep was barely in my mind. I needed to know how it was all going to end. I was not disappointed. I’ve heard other readers say that getting through some of the middle books with a slower pace is worth. And I  have to agree. If you’re reading this series and you’re near the middle and wonder if you should continue reading, well I really hope you do. The ending is worth it.

I give this book 5/5 stars, which I rarely ever do.

Overall, this series is an amazing one. Robert Jordan created a vastly detailed world. He incorporated a magic system unlike any other that I’ve read about, while also creating various countries of this world with different customs and qualities to the people. Accents, clothing, and hairstyles to name a few things that would distinguish different nationalities.

The thing I disliked the most about this series was the female characters. From the beginning, they all seemed to be extremely haughty and arrogant, especially the Aes Sedai. It annoyed me how they all seemed to think that they knew better than every one else and that they should “guide” the Dragon Reborn. Really what they wanted to do was control him. Their attitude is that because he is a man that he is a complete idiot and will likely get himself killed if left alone. When Egwene starts to adopt this attitude as the Amrilyn Seat, my fondness for her declined. Yes, Rand could be a stubborn person at times, but really, who wants people constantly telling them what to do when you’re supposed to be the savior of the world? Brandon Sanderson managed to salvage a lot of the female characters by having them reflect on their past behavior and learn and grow from it, without losing who they were.

There are questions that I still have that were never answered by the end of the books. I won’t say what those questions are, as i don’t want to provide any spoilers. The questions I still have are little things and not necessarily important. The ending is still satisfactory, although I could see a sequel of some kind being set in the same world had Robert Jordan lived. I don’t think Brandon Sanderson would be the one to tell the stories of future generations in this world. He has his own books to write. While I would read a sequel or spin off, I don’t find that it’s necessary to the overall plot of these 14 books.

Overall, I give this series a rating of 4/5 stars.

Have you read the Wheel of Time? What did you think of it? Do you agree or disagree with anything I’ve said here? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Towers of Midnight – Wheel of Time #13 Review

Towers of MidngihtSynopsis: (from Goodreads) The Last Battle has started. The seals on the Dark One’s prison are crumbling. The Pattern itself is unraveling, and the armies of the Shadow have begun to boil out of the Blight.

The sun has begun to set upon the Third Age.

Perrin Aybara is now hunted by specters from his past: Whitecloaks, a slayer of wolves, and the responsibilities of leadership. All the while, an unseen foe is slowly pulling a noose tight around his neck. To prevail, he must seek answers in Tel’aran’rhiod and find a way–at long last–to master the wolf within him or lose himself to it forever.

Meanwhile, Matrim Cauthon prepares for the most difficult challenge of his life. The creatures beyond the stone gateways–the Aelfinn and the Eelfinn–have confused him, taunted him, and left him hanged, his memory stuffed with bits and pieces of other men’s lives. He had hoped that his last confrontation with them would be the end of it, but the Wheel weaves as the Wheel wills. The time is coming when he will again have to dance with the Snakes and the Foxes, playing a game that cannot be won. The Tower of Ghenjei awaits, and its secrets will reveal the fate of a friend long lost.

This latest novel of Robert Jordan’s #1 New York Times bestselling series–the second based on materials he left behind when he died in 2007–brings dramatic and compelling developments to many threads in the Pattern. The end draws near.

Dovie’andi se tovya sagain. It’s time to toss the dice.

There isn’t a lot I feel I need to say about this book. Everything that is happening is all leading to the Last Battle and the conclusion of the series. I will say that the pacing has picked up a great deal as the end of the world creeps closer. The characters reflect on their lives over the past two years, from the time when they left the Two Rivers til now. Faile has even redeemed herself in my eyes as she reflects on her own past behavior. I no longer want her to die, though she is still far from my favorite character.

I know this review is short and not much of a review at all, for which I apologize. I hope to have more to say after I finish A Memory of Light and complete the series. Please look forward to that post.

I give the Towers of Midnight 4/5 stars.

The Gathering Storm – Wheel of Time #12 Review

The Gathering Storm

Synopsis (from Goodreads): Tarmon Gai’don, the Last Battle, looms. And mankind is not ready.

The final volume of the Wheel of Time, A Memory of Light, was partially written by Robert Jordan before his untimely passing in 2007. Brandon Sanderson, New York Times bestselling author of the Mistborn books, was chosen by Jordan’s editor–his wife, Harriet McDougal–to complete the final book. The scope and size of the volume was such that it could not be contained in a single book, and so Tor proudly presents The Gathering Storm as the first of three novels that will cover the outline left by Robert Jordan, chronicling Tarmon Gai’don and Rand al’Thor’s final confrontation with the Dark One. This short sequence will complete the struggle against the Shadow, bringing to a close a journey begun almost twenty years ago and marking the conclusion of the Wheel of Time, the preeminent fantasy epic of our era.

In this epic novel, Robert Jordan’s international bestselling series begins its dramatic conclusion. Rand al’Thor, the Dragon Reborn, struggles to unite a fractured network of kingdoms and alliances in preparation for the Last Battle. As he attempts to halt the Seanchan encroachment northward–wishing he could form at least a temporary truce with the invaders–his allies watch in terror the shadow that seems to be growing within the heart of the Dragon Reborn himself.

Egwene al’Vere, the Amyrlin Seat of the rebel Aes Sedai, is a captive of the White Tower and subject to the whims of their tyrannical leader. As days tick toward the Seanchan attack she knows is imminent, Egwene works to hold together the disparate factions of Aes Sedai while providing leadership in the face of increasing uncertainty and despair. Her fight will prove the mettle of the Aes Sedai, and her conflict will decide the future of the White Tower–and possibly the world itself.

The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass. What was, what will be, and what is, may yet fall under the Shadow.

This installment in this epic series focuses mainly on Rand and Egwene and the events happening around them. After a horrid experience involving Semhriage, one of the Forsaken, something inside Rand changes. He tries to make himself into an unbreakable force, frightening those closest to him with his coldness and sudden willingness to do things he would never have done before.

In the White Tower, Egwene has no knowledge of what is happening to any of her other friends, as she fights her own battle to have Elaida removed as Amrilyn.

As I was reading this book, in the back of my mind was the fact that this book was the first not written by Robert Jordan  himself. I’m  not sure what I was expecting, but the switch between authors was remarkable! Had I not known about Robert Jordan’s passing and Brandon Sanderson taking over, I would never have known that there was a switch. Sanderson is clearly familiar with the characters. He gets those little nuances for each character so well. I was highly impressed by how well he did. I’m really looking forward to the last two books.

I rate this book 4/5 stars.

Knife of Dreams – Wheel of Time #11 Review

Knife of DreamsSynopsis: (from Goodreads) The dead are walking, men die impossible deaths, and it seems as though reality itself has become unstable: All are signs of the imminence of Tarmon Gai’don, the Last Battle, when Rand al’Thor, the Dragon Reborn, must confront the Dark One as humanity’s only hope. But Rand dares not fight until he possesses all the surviving seals on the Dark One’s prison and has dealt with the Seanchan, who threaten to overrun all nations this side of the Aryth Ocean and increasingly seem too entrenched to be fought off. But his attempt to make a truce with the Seanchan is shadowed by treachery that may cost him everything. Whatever the price, though, he must have that truce. And he faces other dangers.

The winds of time have become a storm, and things that everyone believes are fixed in place forever are changing before their eyes. Even the White Tower itself is no longer a place of safety. Now Rand, Perrin and Mat, Egwene and Elayne, Nynaeve and Lan, and even Loial, must ride those storm winds, or the Dark One will triumph.


After several books in this series moved along quite slowly, not really progressing the story very far despite the length of the books, I’m happy to say that Knife of Dreams has broken that mold. The Last Battle is coming and there is much evidence showing that the Dark One is touching the world. The dead appear before the living, people die horrible deaths, food spoils long before it should and the spring crops aren’t growing.

Perrin could care less about all of this, of course. His only focus is getting his wife back. Like, obsessively!  Yes, she’s his wife and he loves her, but he even witnesses an impossible and horrifying death and shrugs it off because it has nothing to do with rescuing Faile. I’m sorry, really? I don’t think my wish is going to come true. Faile is likely going to survive all the way to the end of the Last Battle.

Mat is still on the road, though he has left the travelling show. If readers recall to several books ago (I can’t remember precisely which one) Moraine, the Aes Sedai who brought them all out of the Two Rivers, sacrificed herself to kill Lanfear and save Rand from that Forsaken. You may recall that she left a letter for Rand, as well as one for Thom Merillin. All this time, we have never known what was written in that letter. Well, in this book we finally find out. Personally, I never truly believed that Moraine and Lanfear were dead. Rand was throwing around a whole lot of balefire (which burns out threads from the Pattern) while fighting one of the other Forsaken. The author certainly made us wait to find out what happened to them. And we’ll continue to wait because we only learn the contents of the letter, not what actually happened.

Moving on. Egwene is captive in the White Tower, reduced to being a novice again by Elaida. Egwene, of course, refuses to become a novice again and continues to behave as though she were the Amrilyn Seat, earning herself a lot of strappings. She has instructed her people not to rescue her because she thinks she can bring Elaida down from the inside. I’m not sure how well that is going to work, but Egwene seems to have a good start so far.

Elayne is besieged on two different fronts. One by her rival for the Lion Throne and the other by Aes Sedai who think to bring her back to the White Tower. While also dealing with her pregnancy symptoms and everyone trying to coddle her, Elayne remains one of the strongest characters in this series. She has had a few moments of stupidity, just like anyone else, but overall, she knows who she is, who she is meant to be, and what she wants.

There is a great deal more action in the book than there has been for the last few books.  I don’t want to give anything away, but there are numerous battle, including attacks by Trollocks, which we haven’t seen for awhile.

This was the last book Robert Jordan wrote before he passed away. I’m glad that this was his last book, as opposed to book 8 or 9, which may have left readers not particularly eager to continue it after the break to find a new author and him to start writing.

I’m really looking forward to how Brandon Sanderson picks up this series. As of this writing, I haven’t read anything by him in the past.

I rate this book 4/5 stars.

Crossroads of Twilight – Wheel of Time #10 Review

Crossroads of TwilightSynopsis: In the tenth book of The Wheel of Time from the New York Times #1 bestselling author Robert Jordan, the world and the characters stand at a crossroads, and the world approaches twilight, when the power of the Shadow grows stronger.

Fleeing from Ebou Dar with the kidnapped Daughter of the Nine Moons, whom he is fated to marry, Mat Cauthon learns that he can neither keep her nor let her go, not in safety for either of them, for both the Shadow and the might of the Seanchan Empire are in deadly pursuit.

Perrin Aybara seeks to free his wife, Faile, a captive of the Shaido, but his only hope may be an alliance with the enemy. Can he remain true to his friend Rand and to himself? For his love of Faile, Perrin is willing to sell his soul.

At Tar Valon, Egwene al’Vere, the young Amyrlin of the rebel Aes Sedai, lays siege to the heart of Aes Sedai power, but she must win quickly, with as little bloodshed as possible, for unless the Aes Sedai are reunited, only the male Asha’man will remain to defend the world against the Dark One, and nothing can hold the Asha’man themselves back from total power except the Aes Sedai and a unified White Tower.
In Andor, Elayne Trakland fights for the Lion Throne that is hers by right, but enemies and Darkfriends surround her, plotting her destruction. If she fails, Andor may fall to the Shadow, and the Dragon Reborn with it.

Rand al’Thor, the Dragon Reborn himself, has cleansed the Dark One’s taint from the male half of the True Source, and everything has changed. Yet nothing has, for only men who can channel believe that saidin is clean again, and a man who can channel is still hated and feared-even one prophesied to save the world. Now, Rand must gamble again, with himself at stake, and he cannot be sure which of his allies are really enemies.


Winter’s Heart ended with Rand and Nynaeve cleansing the male half of the True Source of the Dark One’s taint. I’m sure everyone who has read the series was eager to start Crossroads of Twilight to see the repercussions of such a thing. Such a momentous occasion must change everything!

But first, let’s see what every other character in series is up to in the days leading up to the event and those just after.

Faile and a few other women were captured by the Shaido Aiel and have been made gai’shain. Perrin is, of course, out of his mind with worry and rage. Many readers might feel for this couple, being separated by unforeseeable circumstances, but not me. I have dislike Faile from her very first appearance in the series. Honestly, I want her to die, but I don’t think that’s going to happen. I don’t know what Perrin sees in her or why he loves her so much. His willingness to do just about anything for her is irritating. He was once one of my favorite characters in the series, but now, not so much.

Mat has finally found the Daughter of the Nine Moons, whom he supposed to marry. Hiding out in a travelling show, he has his hands full with the women he rescued from Ebou Dar, as well as the ones he kidnapped during the escape. Mat is a character I have wavered back and forth between liking and disliking. In the very beginning, he was Rand’s best friend, mischievous and easy going. However, the moment he discovers that Rand can channel, he gives in to all the superstition and fear surrounding men who channel. Earlier in the series, all Mat wanted was to get away from Rand as soon as possible. Now that he’s away from everyone he knew from the Two Rivers, he’s finally had a chance to grow from a boy to a man, even if he is still mischievous.

Elayne is trying to secure her place on the Lion Throne, while Egwene sits outside Tar Valon with her army and rebel Aes Sedai.

There is a lot going on in this series, but not much is actually happening. Time moves slowly as the narration goes between one set of characters to another, usually showing what happens to them in the same time frame. In over 800 pages, only about 2 weeks of time pass in the story. Only those that were with Rand and those who can channel saidin are even aware that it’s been cleansed. Everyone else who could sense what happened believes it was the Forsaken preparing some kind of weapon or something else equally as terrible.

So, the repercussions of cleansing saidin are still not known. Everyone seems to be sitting around waiting for things to happen. Only Perrin has any sense of urgency and only because he wants his wife back. Everything is supposed to lead up to the Last Battle. With four more books to go, I hope the pacing increases. As Brandon Sanderson finished the last 3 books after Robert Jordan passed away, I’m eager to see how his writing style differs.

Overall, I give this book 3 stars. It’s not amazing, but it’s not terrible either. It’s a good addition to the series overall and I look forward to starting the next book, especially as it will be the first in the series I haven’t previously read.

The Wheel of Time Series by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson

My reading life this year has mostly been dominated by the Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson. Honestly, I should have finished this series by now. I blame Netflix. Anyway, 14 books with around 700+ pages in each, it’s a long haul. I considered reviewing each book individually but there so much that happens in each book that I just couldn’t. My brain couldn’t handle it.

I first started reading this series about 10 or so years ago. I finished book ten long long before book eleven (Knife of Dreams) was published. As many of you may or may not know, not long after Knife of Dreams was published, Robert Jordan became very ill. Sadly, he passed away without finishing the series. However, Brandon Sanderson stepped in and, using the notes Jordan had left behind, wrote the last 4 books in the series. When I discovered all this and what it would mean for publishing time, I set the series aside and moved on to other books. I certainly didn’t lack for anything to read.

At the beginning of this year, I decided that I would finally go back to the Wheel of Time and finish it off. All of the books had been published and were sitting on my shelf gathering dust, waiting for me to read them.  Since it had been so long since I first read the books, and the series is so detailed, I went right back to the beginning and started again with the Eye of the World. It was almost like reading it all for the very first time all over again. There were only a few little things that I could remember, and those things were spread out across 10 books.

I was interested to see how my opinion of the books might have changed from the first reading. As has happened before, when I’ve reread a series years after initially reading it, I find my opinion and enjoyment have it has usually changed. (This was certainly the case with the Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind). I remember thinking the Eye of the World was slowed paced, but not much else about the other books. As I’ve matured as a reader and a person, I see things I’m sure I didn’t notice before. For one, the female characters are nearly all the same. They’re haughty, snobbish, arrogant and usually have bad tempers. At one point, the female characters were getting very irritating, which may be a factor in why it has taken me so long to get through the series.

Today, I will be starting on book 10, Crossroads of Twilight, which was the last book I read before the earlier publishing hiatus.  I hope to finish the entire series by the end of this year, but with the way things are going, that my not happen.

Have you read the Wheel of Time? Please post any comments on the series you may have, but please keep in mind that as of the time of this writing, I have only read to the end of book 9, Winter’s Heart, so I would appreciate if there were no spoilers about the last five books posted. Thanks!