Rereading the Wheel of Time – Progress Report 3

About the project

A buddy read with my daughter: Rereading the Wheel of Time series, one chapter every other day plus talking about it. That’s partly motivated by the upcoming Amazon Prime TV series, and my daughter’s fascination with Brandon Sanderson. 
The first volume, The Eye of the World, took three months to get through. If you want to track back the last progress reports from January until March, follow these links: Progress Report 1, Progress Report 2, and review of The Eye of the World.

Progress in April

April started with the second volume, The Great Hunt. We’ve covered the first 18 chapters which is some 44% of this volume. 

What has happened in the book?

The Eye of the World ended in Fal Dara, a stronghold at the front of Shienar, after having retrieved the treasure within the Eye. 

The book’s title is partly taken from the epic Hunt for the Horn of Valere which was called in Illian the first time after more than 300 years. The Horn is a mystical artefact which binds heroes of the ages to the one who blows into it. But we didn’t see much of that hunt, yet.

I’ve forgotten, how long the party stayed in Fal Dara – it takes the first nine chapters before they leave. Ok, there is a lot going on in that one place: the Amyrlin Seat arrived with a large entourage of Aes Sedai and Wardens. The Two Rivers folks and the reader need to learn about all the different colours and behaviors. 

Also, Rand needs a lot of time to act like a bloody fool, he is still in teenager mode. 

And there is the Amyrlin Seat. There is the first time in the series that a chapter isn’t from the POV of one of the Two Rivers: Siuane Sanche conversing confidentially with Moirane. Rand is only the very last person she talks to. 

That sounds like lot of exposition and talking, but there is also some action to enjoy with the Trolloc raid. Padan Fain escapes and steals the Horn of Valere. Half of the party – Rand, Loial, Perrin, and Mat – are sent out to get it back under the command of Ingtar. The other half – Nynaeve and Egwene – follow the Aes Sedai back to the White Tower in order to start their education.

Camp after camp after camp later, the party gets mystically separated from Ingtar into a parallel world. That’s a concept which isn’t made much use of in later novels. For the moment, it is needed to rescue the damsel in distress “Selene”, a stunningly beautiful woman who is obviously in disguise. At least for the reader, not so much for Rand, a young adult virgin whose blood went into lower regions.

Robert Jordan dropped the Lord of the Rings copycat-ing, at last. I enjoyed the style far better than in the first volume. Rand still has nearly no agency but the second half will find to the series’s own voice finally. 

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