Sunday, 24 January 2010

Review: The Gathering Storm - Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson


The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
The Wheel of Time, book 12

Genre: fantasy
Pages: 784
Published: October 2009

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 make up A Memory of Light. 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.



Magician by Raymond E.Feist may be the best fantasy book ever written, but WOT is the best fantasy series in the world. I know many thought it just keep on going and going, but that only means more for me to love.

When I in 2007  learned that Robert Jordan had passed away I was devastated. Not only cos of selfish reasons (cos that had been my biggest fear even before I heard he was ill), but also because he was a master with what he was doing. And I know he loved his books and his fans. But then I heard that his legacy would go on, because Jordan had until the end kept on working. The chosen person was Brandon Sanderson, who was a big fan of his works (and an accomplished writer). Jordan had left notes, materials, outline, and written sections, and Sanderson filled in the holes. The finished project was huge and later it was realized the book had to be made into 3.

First let me say that I felt like I was reading Robert Jordan own writing, only here and there I noticed Sanderson's voice. Mostly when it came to explanations. Things we knew, but perhaps he wanted to make sure to all that he also knew, then again it had been a while so it was all good. I did not mind. The script is still Jordan's, it just needed a new producer to put it all together. I had been very afraid that I would see too much of Sanderson, but he melted together just fine and put in his own voice. I approved.


Ok spoilers. Not other way to do this!

Rand is still going crazy, oh how I love him! Not to mention Lews Therin. It is getting darker and people around him is staring to loose faith. Egwene is still a prisoner and trying to undermine Elaida's control. I never really liked Egwene really but for some reason I like her now. Elayne was no where to be soon, no Lan either, and no Logain. I really hoped he didn't die and I forgot. Aviendha came by briefly (here I did notice the new writer). Some Mat and Perrin, but not much. Getting a bit annoyed by Mat, I am afraid he will stand with those stupid Seanchan. Oh I despise them, they can't believe in the Forsaken, they treat people who can channel like crap, and if they win in the end I will go insane.

Moraine is really still alive!? Asmodean? I am pretty sure Rand will die :( Oh and Gawyn is an idiot, and don't even get me started on the Children of the Light. Where is Morgause? Get home and talk to Gawyn, please! This world is going to hell even if they win the Last battle. Well at least I still love the Aiel.

That was some of my thoughts while reading, yes I hate a lot of people there, grrr, and I love a great deal too. There is always someone to like and hate. People to root for, and people to hope the Shadow take (*coughs Children of the Light, mostly Galad and The Seanchan*)

This book picked up the pace, and the whole book is one big "The storm is coming, let's make haste and ride up north". I was really enjoying it, things played out, armies moved, people died. Sure they are not at the last battle yet, The Forsaken is still free, there is still wars going on, and the Shadow is causing big ripples in the thread. But they are close, so if the last book is all about the war. Then the second will finally bring everyone together. It has been some time since that.

By the way, Elayne, the babies, shouldn't she be due soon, and oh that will go to hell too. Cos of that idiot everyone thinks is the father. Hopefully Rand will stop by Caemelyn...and perhaps get blinded by Galad or Gawyn? Oh yes I can see that.

This was mostly a post of all the characters, cos how else can I talk about a series I have been reading for 13 years?

This is great fantasy, I love it to pieces, even if I might never read book 15 two times depending on the outcome. Yes Rand is a fictional crazy boyfriend. I love to re-read this series, and this is to me great fantasy, epic fantasy that is so richly created it takes your breath away.

Thank you Brandon Sanderson for doing a great job with this epic legacy.

Robert Jordan -James Oliver Rigney, Jr.- (October 17, 1948 – September 16, 2007)


Blodeuedd's Cover Corner: Not liking it at all. If you look closely you can see how rich her make-up is, and to say this nicely, well she looks like a lady of the night, perhaps Rand destroyed a brothel.
Reason for Reading. My own copy, have been waiting for 3 years to read it.
Final thoughts: LOVE IT. WOT is fantasy at its best.


20 comments:

  1. If I ever pick up fantasy reading again... :)

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  2. I don't do a lot of fantasy..when I do read it I enjoy it...and this series sounds pretty awesome!

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  3. Oh wow! I had no idea that Robert Jordan had passed away.I never followed any male authors, and he was one with so many books that I never really looked too closely into the Wheels of Time series. But I think that's going to change. Your post has inspired me to enter into this world that Robert Jordan spent so much of his time in and to have it carried on by another author is just amazing.

    I have been reading RA Salvatore and Drizzt and I have been loving them so far. So I think my misconception of male authors has been eliminated.

    I'm so happy to read that you found Sanderson's writing to mesh and flow so well with Robert Jordan's, making the book a very special read for you!

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  4. Sounds like fun. I havent read the whole review, maybe I will want to read this some day! :)

    I love the new header! Adore the picture.

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  5. Chris,
    Then do pick WOT, I love book 1, you can just read that if you wanna ;)

    Mandi
    I love fantasy, this was one of the first i ever read and it will always stay with me.

    Amy
    Lol, I have mostly read male authors, then i started to read some female ones too, but for some reason I prefer the male ones.

    Yes, I was truly heartbroken, but I am also happy for what he left behind. He really wanted to give us fans an end. Do give him a go, I love his characters, so many great guys ;)

    I read a salvarore once, then i tried another book but it was like book...way in and I was lost. sadly.

    Thanks Nina,
    I do like to chance.
    What can I say, read fantasy ;)

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  6. Oh God, I stopped reading immediately when I saw 'pages: 784' ;) That's too much for me! And I agree with you that the cover is yuk! Not very inviting either... I admire you for reading this and writing such a long review about it. That's really great, hon :)

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  7. Have you read any of Brandon Sanderson's other books? Elantris is an excellent stand alone novel.

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  8. I read a lot of fantasy in my childhood. This series was good and I think I read about 15 books (those Finnish translations) until I found out there were no more books in Finnish at that time. I never continued with English books. It's my dream to one day finish this series. I think I'll start from the beginning (and definitely not with Finnish books). But I wonder when I'm able to rip myself away from romance novels long enough to start WoT... :P

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  9. EXcellent review, though I did skip the spoilers. I think I left off at book 9 so I still have a ways to go before finishing this series. Glad that the author transition was seamless!!

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  10. Hi B!

    Here's an author that I've always meant to try and have not. I agree with your cover thoughts, not the best of covers. Maybe they'll rethink or re-do them at a later date.

    I love fantasy, so now that you've reminded me of what I've been missing, I'll have to give the books a try. Wow, 12 books, I could be reading for a while, lol. I didn't know that Jordan had passed, but he will never be forgot because of fans like you. Thanks for a great review!!

    ((hugs))

    Dottie :)

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  11. I read the first book in this seris years ago and never read another one. I will have to start again. I've seen a few reviews of Robert Jordan's lately. Would like to have another go at them.

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  12. Great review B. :)

    And I love your header.

    M

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  13. I've never read this series. I want to, but it's going to be FOURTEEN books long? Geez, that's a lot! Not sure I'm up for that, though my Falco mysteries are about that long, too, and I started those just a few years ago. Hmm....

    LOVE the Armitage love on the sidebar :-)

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  14. Janna,
    All the covers have been a huge disappointment. The Uk ones, well they are better but they are all the same. Some of the Swedish and Finnish are much worse. Well do not judge a book by its cover ;)
    Oh yes, it was huge!!!!! Even to hold it was hard.

    John
    No, never. I first heard about him, 2 years ago, and first this year I saw his books around. But still not read him.

    Maija,
    Oh yes not with the Finnish! I get so annoyed when they split fantasy to 2-3 books sometimes. That is sure a way to get money for them (cos yes better to read smaller books, but to buy them, no way.
    So read the English ones ;) But I understand that it can be hard to pull yourself away from those hunky romance guys

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  15. Thanks Chris :D
    Hehe yay

    Dottie
    They do seem to stick with those covers. Actually one book I read had a good one, but that was a translation.

    That is so true, he will never be forgotten cos of us. And as a fellow fantasy lover I do give you some hints *hint hint* that you should read them ;) Hehe

    Alaine,
    He is wonderful, gotta love him. I know people think they drag along, I thought so too, but never stopped me from loving the books.

    Thanks Michelle :D

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  16. Aarti,
    Lol, just adore him ;)
    Oh yes 14! It was planned to be 12 but when they started looking over the material left by Jordan they realized it had to be longer

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  17. I am so glad this worked for you..

    Nice when a follow up book does the job you were waiting on..

    E.H>

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  18. FANTASTIC! I didn't read the spoiler as I am going to tackle these myself - although, by the time i get through them all, to this one, I most probably would have forgotten the spoiler! LOL Glad you enjoyed it - and Sanderson's voice didn't spoil it for you! :))

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  19. EH
    I am sure too!
    Oh yes, so happy, and I can't wait for the next one :D

    Sassy,
    My weird spoiler, lol, had to get all my thoughts out.
    Oh yes read them, read them. Do continue.

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