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  1. #1

    is the "wheel of time" series worth reading?

    I've read the game of thrones and dark tower series and enjoyed them both.

    A year or more ago I purchased the first book from the wheel of time series. I didn't make it through the gathering of people in the village (town meeting thing very early in book one). I honestly have a hard time staying awake while reading it. I put down the book a year ago and never looked back.

    Is it going to be a lot of the same throughout the series? I'm tempted to give it another shot.

  2. #2
    I finished the first book a month or so ago, and am just starting the second one. I enjoyed it, but I agree it moves very slowly. Things do pick up a bit after the gathering in the village that you mentioned, but there are slow points throughout. I've heard the series is very good aside from Crossroads of Twilight (Book 10?). So far the second book seems to be more engaging than the first, so I think I'd recommend getting through it and checking out the rest of the series, but you should definitely get an opinion from someone who has read all of it already.

  3. #3
    High Overlord Cantwingrr's Avatar
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    It picks up really fast. I bought the first book and finished the 14th within a month and a half. Its worth it.
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  4. #4
    It also took me a while to get in to but the pace does improve and I did enjoy the series.. however things slow down a little again by book 7-8 and improve around book 11 (if I remember correctly).

    I'd say try and stick with it for the first book and if you are still struggling then its probably not for you.

  5. #5
    if you can make it through the first book, you can make it to the end. its worth it... the odd thing about the first book is: the first time i read it, i had a hard time getting through it, but after i finished the series, i reread the first book like a half dozen times. there are a couple-few dry books in the middle of the series but brandon sanderson ends the last 3-4 books very well and very exciting. i dont want to spoil the end but i felt there should have been more "what happened in the aftermath" stuff.

  6. #6
    If you read every Song of Ice and Fire book you really shouldn't struggle with or be bored by Wheel of Time. Wheel of Time books are much more readable then SoIaF. They aren't better, but are more readable. Tho sometimes it gets a bit too pseudo-philosophical, and some of the female characters are extremely poorly written and are annoying, they seem only to exist to fawn over the protagonist.

    I say if you enjoy fantasy novels it's worth reading.
    If you are really into fantasy it's a must.
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  7. #7
    Ok. Thanks for the info, everyone.

  8. #8
    Old God Nindoriel's Avatar
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    I just read through the wiki page. The creator and Shai'tan... is this some religious stuff?

  9. #9
    I managed to read ... the first two and a half books. Couldn't continue after that. Things moved too slowly, lots and lots stories that were all in fact quite interesting, but it spread my attention to thin and drew the tales out too long for my taste. That, and the treatment of the female "characters."

    It was a huge disappointment for me only because I was so damn interested, but knew there would be little to no significant development for several long books. (having asked a friend who kept current with the books)
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  10. #10
    Ribbon Guru Simca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nindoriel View Post
    I just read through the wiki page. The creator and Shai'tan... is this some religious stuff?
    No, in fact I'd argue it has far less religious context than 90%+ fantasy series. The Creator is literally just the being that created the world(s) and Shai'tan (commonly known as The Dark One) was imprisoned by the Creator at the beginning of time. The battle in the series is between The Light (the forces of good, led by the protagonists from the books) and The Shadow (the forces of evil, led by The Dark One and the Forsaken).

    Pretty much everyone in the entire world believes in the existence of the Creator and The Dark One - it's not really even a religion to them. It's just a fact. There really are no true religions in the Wheel of Time. There are some strange belief systems, like one set of people who think that the living world is actually a dream, but nobody anywhere in the series that I can recall ever thinks of Gods or Goddesses or alternate deities of any kind.

    Edit: Actually, a great analogy is this - the Titans are like the Creator and the Old Gods are like The Dark One. Titans imprisoned the Old Gods, set some plans in motion on Azeroth, and then left. Eventually, the Old Gods' prisons weakened and the people of Azeroth had to band together to fight them.
    Last edited by Simca; 2014-09-02 at 04:43 AM.
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  11. #11
    If you can handle the intense YA aspects about the series and how disgustingly polarized good and evil are, with no such thing as a middle ground, then it will be fine. I read the whole series over a year or so and it was fine for the most part. The magic system is interesting, the story evolves well despite some slow points, and it has a different feel from the classic Tolkien style mythology. However, some books are thick with characters you might not care about and only have a handful of chapters with the character you enjoy, so getting through some books will be a challenge. I also couldn't stand the main character, Rand, being such a pussy most of the time. You think he's going to go full badass and then he just whines like a child and holds true to some ridiculous chivalry ideology.

  12. #12
    One of my favorite series of all time. The first book does take a while to get going but once it does its great. There are plenty of characters so there's a good chance that there will be at least one that you love.
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  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Coombs View Post
    If you can handle the intense YA aspects about the series
    Wheel of Time is not in any sense a "Young Adult" series, unless you're just being snarky about fantasy in general.

    WoT is a massive, sprawling work with literally thousands of characters and dozens of locations. Jordan's prose and world building when he's on his game are second to none. That being said, the first book is very much just Fellowship of the Ring with Woman Gandalf And Some Of The Hobbits Are Also Girls, and later when Jordan's health is declining the pace and writing quality suffer markedly. Then he dies before the series is finished and another author has to wrap it up, which frankly was never going to work out all that well no matter who replaced him.

    If you're a fantasy reader it's a can't miss staple of the genre. If you're not big on genre fiction it won't hold your interest.

  14. #14
    Old God Nindoriel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simca View Post
    No, in fact I'd argue it has far less religious context than 90%+ fantasy series. The Creator is literally just the being that created the world(s) and Shai'tan (commonly known as The Dark One) was imprisoned by the Creator at the beginning of time. The battle in the series is between The Light (the forces of good, led by the protagonists from the books) and The Shadow (the forces of evil, led by The Dark One and the Forsaken).

    Pretty much everyone in the entire world believes in the existence of the Creator and The Dark One - it's not really even a religion to them. It's just a fact. There really are no true religions in the Wheel of Time. There are some strange belief systems, like one set of people who think that the living world is actually a dream, but nobody anywhere in the series that I can recall ever thinks of Gods or Goddesses or alternate deities of any kind.

    Edit: Actually, a great analogy is this - the Titans are like the Creator and the Old Gods are like The Dark One. Titans imprisoned the Old Gods, set some plans in motion on Azeroth, and then left. Eventually, the Old Gods' prisons weakened and the people of Azeroth had to band together to fight them.
    Ok. Just wanted to make sure because the terminology sounded a bit too close to god and satan.

  15. #15
    The first four are fantastic. The next four are so bad I dropped the series and never finished. From what I hear, the next 5 or so are decent again.

    Let that be the first warning: Yes, Wheel of Time was a thirteen fourteen book series. The plan was for ten books; the original author wrote eleven of them, then he died. The next three was picked up by Brandon Sanderson (who is a pretty good author himself -- highly recommend his Mistborn series).

    The second warning: In the middle, he starts devoting incredible amounts of time to following characters and story arcs that they couldn't pay most people to give a crap about.

    The third warning: You're in a boring part at the front of the first book. Keep reading and it will get good very fast after that. Pretty much immediately after that too.

    So, my recommendation is to keep reading another 100 pages or so. If you still don't enjoy it, stop. You're into the good parts by then, and if it's not doing anything for you it's time to bail out before you end up reading thousands more pages hoping it gets better. If you start liking it, you can make up your mind then about whether or not you want to read more.
    Last edited by Xar226; 2014-09-02 at 04:57 AM.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Mahourai View Post
    Wheel of Time is not in any sense a "Young Adult" series, unless you're just being snarky about fantasy in general.

    WoT is a massive, sprawling work with literally thousands of characters and dozens of locations. Jordan's prose and world building when he's on his game are second to none. That being said, the first book is very much just Fellowship of the Ring with Woman Gandalf And Some Of The Hobbits Are Also Girls, and later when Jordan's health is declining the pace and writing quality suffer markedly. Then he dies before the series is finished and another author has to wrap it up, which frankly was never going to work out all that well no matter who replaced him.

    If you're a fantasy reader it's a can't miss staple of the genre. If you're not big on genre fiction it won't hold your interest.
    I consider anything that shies away sex and violence to be YA. He describes the moments leading up to that point and then ends the scene. It doesn't need to be "Hostile" or "50 Shades of Grey" in content, but if the books were made into a show it could air on Nickelodeon or ABC at the least.

  17. #17
    Ribbon Guru Simca's Avatar
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    Personally, it is my favorite series of all time. I would absolutely recommend it. The best part about the series, by far, is the way it is structured. Details were planned out 10-15 years in advance. Every book has multiple prophecies mentioned in them, and figuring out what they mean alongside (and often before) the characters themselves is a great joy. One of the visions mentioned early in book 1 is not fulfilled until the final chapter of book 14. Others are fulfilled throughout the series (the "twice and twice shall he be marked" prophecy being an example of one fulfilled in the first half of the series).

    The thing I appreciate more than anything else in a story is the plot itself, and the plot in Wheel of Time is the best there is.

    However, it definitely isn't flawless. Books 8-10 drag on far too long, and many people I've talked to turned away from the series around that point. If you can get through them though, I think you will greatly appreciate the final three books (12-14) and book 11 isn't bad.

    The biggest issues I've seen people have with the series besides the erratic pacing later on are:
    • The beginning of the first book (first 7-8 chapters or so) is basically standard village life stuff. The setting is so thoroughly established before the action begins that some people actually get turned off before it starts. Once it starts though, it really doesn't stop, it's basically non-stop madness until the end of the book, and most people enjoy Book 1 (that I've talked to) after they finish it.
    • The author is very, very descriptive. For some people, this is a plus. For others, they will be irritated that the author continues to tell them the roof of the inn the characters are staying in has yellow clay tiles (and other minor details).
    • The first handful of female characters in the story are pretty heavily flawed characters. Since they're protagonists, you will see/hear of them a lot, and some people get very bothered by their constant flaws (braid-pulling, I'm talking about you).
    • The primary protagonist becomes incredibly powerful early in the series, and the majority of the conflict he faces later on is internal conflict. (Hence some comments that he is "acting like a pussy".) He literally has the weight of the world on his shoulders, and I find his perspective to be understandable, but others do not.
    Last edited by Simca; 2014-09-02 at 10:16 PM.
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  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Coombs View Post
    I consider anything that shies away sex and violence to be YA.
    People have sex all the time in WoT. People get murdered, often horribly, all the time in WoT. I'm not sure what you look for in your "adult" fiction but explicit sex scenes generally aren't a hallmark of mature writing.

  19. #19
    Jordan was very long winded and he tended to write about every detail every time you see a character even in the later books. book 8-10 do slow down but the last few are awesome. Sanderson did a great job of finishing Jordan's legacy after he passed.

    I would also recommend Terry Goodkind's series and Stephen Erikson's, although the latter's first book is very slow.
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  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Coombs View Post
    I consider anything that shies away sex and violence to be YA. He describes the moments leading up to that point and then ends the scene. It doesn't need to be "Hostile" or "50 Shades of Grey" in content, but if the books were made into a show it could air on Nickelodeon or ABC at the least.
    It would sit solidly in the same kind of prime time slots shows on ABC or NBC currently occupy, assuming the different instances of nudity were filmed in such a way that nothing was shown.

    It has quite a bit of violence and a fair amount of "sexual content" but none of it is graphic, and has more than a number of topics that would be out of place on a kids channel, so it definitely would not be a Nickelodeon level show (which is a kids channel first and foremost).

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