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MAYBE in the pacing, but that is it. Sanderson got absolutely nothing else right beyond the events *NM* Cannoli Send a noteboard - 25/02/2017 11:59:06 PM

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The Path of Daggers slowed the series to a snails crawl only fully evident when one considers precisely what happened (or failed to happen) in the course of the volume: It went back and forth from Rand and the Seanchans sweeping ambitious plans to feint and maneuver each other into a final climactic battle—aborted in the final pages when the great generals of both sides realize they lack the stomach for it. What is the only thing sadder than a battle won? A mountain of corpses created to set up a battle CANCELED on account of shame. Rather than repeated pleas for peace by a general born in a land where peace is so unheard of it has become an oath, the protagonist and narrative would have been better served by pleas to make the countless lives lost in preliminary battles worth something rather than simply squandered in an object lesson on excess. A series predicated on Armageddon lacks the luxury of fretting over martial excess.

Everything was downhill from there; even CLEANSING THE TAINT was not nearly enough to make WH any less a desultory slog mainly occupied by the far more pivotal event that loomed over the rest of the series: The bitchy sociopath Perrin married got kidnapped.

Since Jordan (frigteningly) made Perrin and Faile analogues of himself and Harriet, we were all forced to endure three volumes—a QUARTER OF THE WHOLE SERIES—little more than angst and ethical exploration appropriate to adolescents, not a middle-aged author. It is easy to imagine the whole sorry saga as just a stylized account of a time Jordan busted a pool cue over the head of some random bar patron with whom Harriet was flirting. Then follows CoT, a volume so eventful I had to look it up to remember if ANYTHING happened (answer: Not much.)

Knife of Dreams might have saved a series stumbling to a halt had it not severely overcompensated in a way presaging AMoL: A plodding narrative of non-events gave way to a breathless account of highly anticipated events incidentally resolved. Galad finally takes over the WCs and avenges his adoptive mother, Semi finally slaughters the entire Seanchan royal house, making Tuon not just heir apparent but heir default, Egwene finally returns to the WT and, of course, Moiraines survival is finally revealed. None of those things transpires with the intricacy and pregnancy of the Seanchans return from across the Aryth or conquest of Amadicia and the WCs, Suianes departure from the WT or Moiraines departure from the world. They happen brusquely, because they MUST happen, before Jordan resumes vicarious self-flagellation (no mean feat) over a fictionalized Harriet.

The closest the series ever comes to a return to form is TGS and ToM: Many significant events are recounted in compelling and interesting ways. Too many to summarize briefly here, which only underscores how quickly and easily the above summaries of the three previous volumes. So there was justified hope AMoL would be less like those and more like the volumes immediately preceding it.

In the event, it was in between, probably the best to be hoped after the spasmodic melodrama into which the series descended, further compounded by the authors death. It is hard to blame Sandersons failure to capture the magic of the series' opening half given that he had little to work with and many huge obstacles in completing its final quarter. Yes, the voice of central characters is often stilted under Sanderson, and yes, AMoL is more an inexplicable blend of haste and sloth than care and alacrity. But the first was unavoidable and the second compulsory: We cannot reasonably expect even a skilled fanboy to heavily revise his inspiration with his mentors editor-cum-wife watching over his shoulder.

In perspective: No, the three final volumes by Sanderson do not reach the level of any of Jordans first six (though I would rank TGS, ToM and ACoS roughly evenly,) but were ALL better than ANY of TPoD, WH or CoT, which were written ENTIRELY by Jordan.

“Tolerance is the virtue of the man without convictions.” GK Chesteron
Inde muagdhe Aes Sedai misain ye!
Deus Vult!
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How did you feel after completing AMoL? - - 24/02/2017 04:03:10 AM 1510 Views
Unsatisfied I suppose or perhaps regretful - 24/02/2017 02:54:12 PM 978 Views
I'll post this again - 25/02/2017 01:29:16 AM 736 Views
Very good post, can't argue with it. - 25/02/2017 02:40:18 AM 903 Views
I can argue with some of it - 25/02/2017 09:32:17 PM 851 Views
You can say whatever you want, but you're wrong - 25/02/2017 10:40:58 PM 773 Views
We are not discussing concrete facts, so objective error is impossible - 26/02/2017 01:21:46 AM 908 Views
In any discussion, error is possible. In your discussions, it's a near certainty. - 28/02/2017 08:24:59 PM 734 Views
On a different topic, how important do you think that stuff is? - 03/03/2017 07:20:15 AM 841 Views
It's all about suspending disbelief, isn't it? - 04/03/2017 01:13:12 AM 842 Views
That makes a lot of sense. - 08/03/2017 10:18:56 PM 831 Views
On further reflection, I think the religion element being left out is important. - 04/03/2017 04:07:53 AM 757 Views
Middle-Earth? - 08/03/2017 09:53:45 PM 915 Views
A Elbereth Gilthoniel... - 10/03/2017 04:48:50 PM 779 Views
Personally, "religion" in WoT makes perfect sense... For the AoL. Not so much the Third Age - 09/03/2017 01:55:29 AM 857 Views
But did they really undeniably prove this existence? - 09/03/2017 04:19:43 PM 943 Views
Re: But did they really undeniably prove this existence? - 10/03/2017 07:47:11 AM 953 Views
I think we are saying similar things - 12/03/2017 08:31:13 PM 839 Views
Some points - 25/02/2017 11:54:50 PM 826 Views
Well, some THINGS anyway. - 26/02/2017 01:56:29 AM 782 Views
Your recognition of irony is profound - 26/02/2017 08:39:47 AM 740 Views
Not great, but better; what all went to Hell after ACoS, Sanderson at least returned to Purgatory - 25/02/2017 03:39:58 PM 742 Views
MAYBE in the pacing, but that is it. Sanderson got absolutely nothing else right beyond the events *NM* - 25/02/2017 11:59:06 PM 600 Views
mosty disappointment - 27/02/2017 10:15:29 PM 712 Views
Exhausted - 27/02/2017 10:52:51 PM 766 Views
Total agree about Moiraine's return..... - 28/02/2017 03:57:57 AM 785 Views
With Demandred... That was likely at least somewhat the point. - 28/02/2017 06:09:13 AM 742 Views
Not best pleased. - 27/02/2017 11:59:06 PM 703 Views
It felt like the end of Grease when the car flew off - 01/03/2017 02:22:19 AM 771 Views
Re: It felt like the end of Grease when the car flew off - 01/03/2017 08:39:23 AM 874 Views
Re: It felt like the end of Grease when the car flew off - 01/03/2017 11:23:18 PM 850 Views
Re: It felt like the end of Grease when the car flew off - 02/03/2017 06:07:12 AM 740 Views
I still haven't read it. - 01/03/2017 08:03:53 PM 672 Views
Interesting, any reason why you haven't read it yet? *NM* - 01/03/2017 10:26:21 PM 442 Views
It was the end of their world as I knew it, and I felt fine. *NM* - 02/03/2017 11:13:25 PM 448 Views
You were just happy that you-know-who died! *NM* - 03/03/2017 02:47:38 AM 478 Views
Disappointed, shocked, relieved. - 03/03/2017 04:44:56 PM 710 Views
Curious - what were you hoping to happen to Rand at the end? *NM* - 03/03/2017 09:00:12 PM 492 Views
Me too! - 04/03/2017 10:19:21 AM 644 Views
I cried and I was glad it was over! - 04/03/2017 09:13:03 PM 763 Views
there's just SO MUCH that could happen - 05/03/2017 09:33:26 AM 785 Views

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