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 (goodreads.com)
After hearing the Robert Jordan is one of the best authors of fantasy, I decided to give his first novel a try. I can’t say that I was disappointed; it comes pretty close to being one of my favorites.
The plot is pretty complex, but not too confusing and I think Jordan handled it pretty well. The plot is pretty standard for your fantasy novel. There are bad guys who want to try to take over the world again and young people that no one knows about are the key to defeating this evil. The story is pretty slow throughout with a few quick action scenes here and there. What kept me going were the secrets that I wanted to uncover and the beautiful world that Jordan created.
Robert Jordan spent an enormous about of time with his world building. It is one of the best and can be compared to George R.R Martin and Tolkein. He includes so much detail that the story can become verbose at times. Jordan spends a lot of time describing clothing, the scenery down to how things smell, the people (even minor characters), cities and their buildings, and even the minor actions of the characters. I would say that there is little to be left to the imagination. He also includes tons of history throughout the novel. You learn about people, places, and events that happened thousands of years ago. Jordan’s world is so complex and in-depth that I had to read the glossary several times after reading the first few chapters to understand what the characters were discussing. They describe things such as the Aes Sadi, Ajah, the Pattern, Children of the Light, Breaking of the World, Darkfriends, and the One Power to name just a few important terms.
Even though his world was so complex and I had to continue looking things up, I really got to become part of the world he was describing. I could picture everything and everyplace that was described. If you don’t like things that are detail oriented, then I wouldn’t suggest reading Jordan.
I also enjoyed the magic system even though I found it a bit confusing at first. Basically, people wield the One Power, which is provided by the True Source. This True Source is split into two parts. One is the Saidar (for the women) and Saidin (for the men). During the Breaking of the World Saidin was tainted by the Dark One so when men would wield the One Power it would drive them to madness. As a result, there haven’t been men who can wield the power for thousands of years. Eventually, you learn that the power is split into five elements (air, water, earth, fire, and spirit) and even though both can wield all five, some of the powers are stronger in males than in females and vice versa. You also learn what the One Power can do as you read the book.
The Eye of the World is a very character based novel. There are so many protagonists that I felt I couldn’t really connect to or care for any one of them as much as I would have liked. If you want to know who to pay attention to when beginning the novel, then you should pay close attention to Rand, Matt, Perrin, Egwene, Nynaeve, and Thom. The only one of these characters that I slightly cared about was Rand. That is probably because most of the story seems to be in his point-of-view. You get to hear many of his thoughts and enter tons of his dreams. He is also the character with a mysterious past that I still want to uncover. At least I found the characters to be real. Their actions, emotions, and lack of knowledge of the world outside of their home made them feel like actual people. I also enjoyed how strong his male characters were, but even more so the female characters. They tend to be more powerful than the men, which you don’t come across very often.
I did enjoy the book, but I do not know yet when I will continue reading the series. There are other books I think I would rather read first. However, I do recommend at least giving it a try and if you do read the glossary several times before reading. There is minimal violence and nothing that would be too inappropriate for younger readers (though they may find some things to be confusing), so I would recommend this book to anyone who is 16 and older and who doesn’t mind books that are detail oriented.
My rating 4/5 stars!
About the series and the final books completed by Brandon Sanderson
About the author and his works
Why I’m Thankful for Brandon Sanderson (partisobscurum.wordpress.com)
Top Ten – Books Affecting Me (lpstribling.wordpress.com)
The Wheel of Time Keeps on Turning (or How I Was Broken by the Wheel of Pain) (mikelpen.wordpress.com)
The Eye of the World (Wheel of Time, #1) | Book Review (cynsworkshop.wordpress.com)
Teaser Tuesday: The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan (mikecoville.wordpress.com)
Teaser Tuesday: The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan (continued) (mikecoville.wordpress.com)
*photo provided by wikipedia.org