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A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

"If you think Wheel of Time is good, then I dare you to re-read it. Believe me, it’s really bad."


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that I have no desire to re-read it, and no expectation that I'll "get" any more out of re-reads than I did upon first reading (whereas every new reading of WoT gave me something new to chew on).

That would be a mistake as there are pretty deep mysteries in that series central to the story. Re-reads of ASoIaF are well worth it in terms of picking up on it all. Pretty good thread comparing the two series somewhere on that count. I'll poke around for it a bit later.

 

 

I'll believe it when I see it! (Note: my intuition is that I picked up on most/all of them, not that they aren't there. But that may well just be arrogance on my part!)

 

 

Here is a link to the old debate if interested:

 

http://www.dragonmount.com/forums/topic/61908-compare-contrast-wot-asofi/?hl=+ice%20+and%20+fire%20+mysteries

 

 

 

 

I have to say, that was a mind-numbing thread. But thanks for providing the link. I can't say my opinion's changed--I still think I gathered all the clues/info there was to gather in ASOIAF, or close enough to all that re-reading wouldn't give me much new insight. Plus, the desire just isn't there. (In fairness, I might have picked up on most of the WoT stuff too had I read it as an adult, and without such long breaks between books. But I don't think so. Part of the joy of WoT's world development and magic system is that it gives us the juice to theorise about events well beyond those that take place in the books.)

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Yeah went through it after I linked and had forgotten the turn it took for a bit there with a couple of posters. That said I think it does a good job of detailing many of the things to look for in rereads and Werthead per usual gives some very insightful commentary.

 

I came to WoT at a pretty young age and I often wonder whether it would have had the same impact if I'd discovered it later on. As I'm sure you know the series takes a good deal of heat in the general fantasy fandom. Mainly I'm able to defend issues that are raised but more and more often post Sanderson I find myself agreeing with some of the critiques. The drop in quality is hard to stomachs sometimes when we see some of the other work being produced.

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It's been covered in detail elsewhere but there was an appalling amount of bloat in order to facilitate the 3 way split. RJ would have been long finished simply because it would have been wrapped up in two volumes at most. After AMOL it became glaringly obvious that there simply wasn't close to enough material to fill out three books. Add the insane release schedule and the fact the Brandon had to create over 50% of the material with zero guidance from the notes and you end up with a mess. It was an impossible task, that doesn't change anything in judging the quality of the work however. You only get one chance, they should have taken the time to do it right.

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About the best that can be said of the last three is that if you squint, you can sort of see the real WoT through the haze, the mischaracterizations, the appalling insertion of Androl in Logain's place, the telling instead of showing, and the outright errors.  RJ wouldn't have been perfect in delivering the end either, but it's a matter of where the flaws are and what those flaws are.  Similar to the uncanny valley in CGI.  Real people's faces aren't perfect, they've got blemishes and wrinkles and stray hairs and usually aren't all that symmetrical, and CGI faces aren't perfect either, but CGI fails to be perfect in different ways than real faces fail to be perfect, and the result is something "off."  That's what the last three books are, WoT in the uncanny valley.

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RJ was pretty bad with adding a lot of unneeded stuff also.  The series could of been finished a book or two earlier but there was a lot of useless stuff in WH and COT imo.  Honestly I think the 3 books BS did were better then the last few RJ did.  I think BS biggest failing was butchering Mat and how childish he had him behave yet I think he did a better job with Perrin then RJ.

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RJ was pretty bad with adding a lot of unneeded stuff also.

 

The huge difference being where we were in the story arc. One can't compare the mid section where the story is still growing with the climax where we should have been sprinting towards the finish. It's apples and oranges.

 

When looking at the last three books TGS is the only that comes close to RJ quality work. Was it better than CoT? I would say so, although not quite as good as WH and KoD. Also one has to look at what the issues are. The biggest complaint about CoT was pace. That is far less of a problem than the unpolished prose, poor characterization, blunt plot work, and mistake riddled work that we saw in ToM and AMoL.

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I do agree that there is a ton of good stuff out there these days. Bakker, Abercrombie Rothfuss etc. are doing some very solid work.

I don't. I think one has to wade through a lot of garbage to find something good. In every genre, not only Fantasy. The quality of most writing being published these days is poor. Imo.

Sturgeon's Law: 90% of everything is crud. The fact that there is a lot of garbage doesn't diminish the quantity of good stuff out there. Also, I find it easy enough to let others wade through the garbage to find the good stuff and use that to find the stuff I like.

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I do agree that there is a ton of good stuff out there these days. Bakker, Abercrombie Rothfuss etc. are doing some very solid work.

I don't. I think one has to wade through a lot of garbage to find something good. In every genre, not only Fantasy. The quality of most writing being published these days is poor. Imo.

Sturgeon's Law: 90% of everything is crud. The fact that there is a lot of garbage doesn't diminish the quantity of good stuff out there. Also, I find it easy enough to let others wade through the garbage to find the good stuff and use that to find the stuff I like.

 

 

It does diminish the proportion of good stuff, though, which I take it is relevant. (Having said that, I'll say again that I think the brute numbers of good things are better than they were even ten years ago!)

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@ Suttree

Wow to the bolded. I don't even know where to go with that. Rowling...superior...material. *cough*

 

From his own site:

 

http://www.patrickrothfuss.com/content/reviews.asp

 

"Harry Potter fans craving a new mind-blowing series should look no further than THE NAME OF THE WIND--the first book in a trilogy about an orphan boy who becomes a legend.

 

His debut novel combines the intricate stories-within-stories structure of The Arabian Nights with the academic setting of the Harry Potter series,

 

a Harry Potter for grownups.

 

Rowling was/is not an original author, but she was better handling that theme than Rothfuss.

 

 

@DemandredFO

 

Brandon had an impossible task, was he perfect, no but I doubt we'd have an ending for a while yet if RJ were still here

 

If you are not good enough (and you have money from elsewhere) then you just say: No, thank you.

 

(Sanderson saw the opportunity of his life after Jordan's death, the publisher thought that Jordan's readers will convert to Sanderson, that's the story behind the last three books, nothing more. Ironically, the sales plummeted after the readers had read TGS. They said: No, thank you.)

 

Jordan had enough, so he wanted to leave this ship at the earliest possible moment.

 

One more thing. We often discuss this series in our book club, and we have an agreement: we think the first six books only as WOT. There is a beginning, there is an end. But if you see WOT from Jordan's pov: every new book has more and more buyers, so why should I stop? I think very few authors has wiseness-cool head to finish a book series, tv series in its peak.

 

@Thrasymachus

 

About the best that can be said of the last three is that if you squint, you can sort of see the real WoT through the haze, the mischaracterizations, the appalling insertion of Androl in Logain's place, the telling instead of showing, and the outright errors.  RJ wouldn't have been perfect in delivering the end either, but it's a matter of where the flaws are and what those flaws are.

 

But this is Jordan's series, WOT belongs to him.

 

Are the latter books are weaker than the first ones? Yes, they are. Are there good materials in them? Plenty. I think he could have delivered a more concise, more "authentic", more "original" last book.

 

@Sabio

 

RJ was pretty bad with adding a lot of unneeded stuff also.  The series could of been finished a book or two earlier but there was a lot of useless stuff in WH and COT imo.

 

Agree.

 

  Honestly I think the 3 books BS did were better then the last few RJ did.

 

Heavely disagree

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It really comes down to if you don't like BS then you will not be happy with what he did, if you like BS then you will be happy with his work in the series.  I never read BS before this so I think he did a pretty good job considering the circumstances.  It can't be easy to take up and try to finish an established series, especially the final book which in many ways in the most important book of a series.

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though gratefull that BS finished the series, i have to say i have had no desire to read any of his own work, in fact i have gone out of my way to avoid his work to the point, that having saw nothing else but his books in the library i have opted to reread a old favorite rather than his work.

I agree aswell that the last 3 RJ books were over done and had alot that was unnecessary to the over all plot.

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(Sanderson saw the opportunity of his life after Jordan's death, the publisher thought that Jordan's readers will convert to Sanderson, that's the story behind the last three books, nothing more. Ironically, the sales plummeted after the readers had read TGS. They said: No, thank you.)

Source? This is the first time I see this claim.

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I do agree that there is a ton of good stuff out there these days. Bakker, Abercrombie Rothfuss etc. are doing some very solid work.

I don't. I think one has to wade through a lot of garbage to find something good. In every genre, not only Fantasy. The quality of most writing being published these days is poor. Imo.

Sturgeon's Law: 90% of everything is crud. The fact that there is a lot of garbage doesn't diminish the quantity of good stuff out there. Also, I find it easy enough to let others wade through the garbage to find the good stuff and use that to find the stuff I like.

 

It does diminish the proportion of good stuff, though, which I take it is relevant. (Having said that, I'll say again that I think the brute numbers of good things are better than they were even ten years ago!)

No, the proportion is what it always was. I don't see it having been diminished at all.

 

It really comes down to if you don't like BS then you will not be happy with what he did, if you like BS then you will be happy with his work in the series.

Not true. It's entirely possible to like Brandon's own work on its own merits without liking his ending to WoT.

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I do agree that there is a ton of good stuff out there these days. Bakker, Abercrombie Rothfuss etc. are doing some very solid work.

I don't. I think one has to wade through a lot of garbage to find something good. In every genre, not only Fantasy. The quality of most writing being published these days is poor. Imo.

Sturgeon's Law: 90% of everything is crud. The fact that there is a lot of garbage doesn't diminish the quantity of good stuff out there. Also, I find it easy enough to let others wade through the garbage to find the good stuff and use that to find the stuff I like.

It does diminish the proportion of good stuff, though, which I take it is relevant. (Having said that, I'll say again that I think the brute numbers of good things are better than they were even ten years ago!)

No, the proportion is what it always was. I don't see it having been diminished at all.

It really comes down to if you don't like BS then you will not be happy with what he did, if you like BS then you will be happy with his work in the series.

Not true. It's entirely possible to like Brandon's own work on its own merits without liking his ending to WoT.

would you reconmend a BS book then? I only ask as i have not read one, having peconceptions based on his WoT work, but i could be wrong.

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though gratefull that BS finished the series, i have to say i have had no desire to read any of his own work, in fact i have gone out of my way to avoid his work to the point, that having saw nothing else but his books in the library i have opted to reread a old favorite rather than his work.

I agree aswell that the last 3 RJ books were over done and had alot that was unnecessary to the over all plot.

 

You're kind of screwing yourself, man. Stormlight Archive and Mistborn are some damn good pieces of fantasy - assuming of course you break that I-don't-care barrier you find at the start of every fantasy book. One really cool thing about his stories is that they're all connected in an overarching universe, and one character actually appears in every single one of his stories manipulating events for his own ends. There's also, of course, the fact that Sanderson actually knows how to write a working magic system that's logical and not overpowered. Unlike a certain somebody we all know and love...

 

EDIT: If you choose to do yourself a favor and start reading Sanderson, I'd recommend Mistborn first. Stormlight Archive is amazing, but it's also only two books in to a planned ten book series. I'd put off starting that for as long as possible to minimize downtime between books. 

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 but i could be wrong.

 

Mistborn started out promisingly enough but fizzled towards the end of the series. Then there is something like Alloy of Law that was just laughably bad. With Stormlight, many of the issues from the WoT rear their head such as the unpolished prose and cringeworty/clunky  dialogue. One of his previous apparent strengths(pace) falls of a cliff in only the second book of the series and there is a good amount of filler. He seems to be trying way too hard to make it "epic" in scope and in reality just needs to cut things down a fair amount. The most troubling part is that he hasn't seemed to progress as an author from his earlier work. I think at this point it's safe to say he can crack out an entertaining story here and there, is very good with duel type actions scenes and certainly has a knack for creating worlds. On the flip side the writing quality is sub par at best. Guess it just depends on what one looks for in their fantasy.

 

All of that said Stormlight certainly is ambitious and I guess only time will tell how successful he is  with this effort. So far I'm not seeing much that would put him in that current top tier of of fantasy writers.

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It really comes down to if you don't like BS then you will not be happy with what he did, if you like BS then you will be happy with his work in the series.

Not true. It's entirely possible to like Brandon's own work on its own merits without liking his ending to WoT.

 

 

Indeed. I believe his own work is far superior to his work on the WoT. Brandon's strength lies in his ability to create unique worlds and interesting magic/abilities and what have you. 

 

Mistborn is by far his best work. The third book was a little TOO convoluted, but definitely excellent overall. (Not read AoL, so can't comment on that) Stormlight Archives again has a strong and interesting world - the magic system is basically Mistborn with different triggers, but there are a few key differences that make it interesting enough to stand on it's own for the time being. 

 

I have to agree that the first two seem to be prolonged far longer than they strictly need to be. It is a long way from CoT pacing, but it does drag. Nonetheless, it is still an enjoyable series. 

 

I think the main thing between Brandon's WoT v his own work is that his biggest strengths are taken away from him in the WoT - his ability to create is limited, and due to the difference in RJ and his own thoughts, some of his creations can come off as ill-fitting the WoT - not particularly anyone's fault, it's almost impossible to create something that meshes well in somebody's world, particularly that of the WoT. 

 

The rest of his work was to get characters from A-B, fill in character development and dialogue. His prose and dialogue being one of his relative weaknesses, and one of RJ's relative strengths, the results showed. 

 

The dialogue issues in SA are there - god forbid me mentioning 'awesomeness' - and his prose are not the best, by his own admittance, but his strengths shine and at the very least warrant a read. His creativity and as Tranovious alluded to - the Cosmere interconnecting all of his stories DO bring something to the fantasy genre. To what extent - be it a neat innovation or a fantasy-revolution - is something for the reader to decide. 

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(Sanderson saw the opportunity of his life after Jordan's death, the publisher thought that Jordan's readers will convert to Sanderson, that's the story behind the last three books, nothing more. Ironically, the sales plummeted after the readers had read TGS. They said: No, thank you.)

Source? This is the first time I see this claim.

 

 

That's because he just made it up. They have never released sales figures for individual WoT books. All we know for certain is that books 8-14 all debuted at #1 on the NYT Best Seller list. That's not an indication of plummeting sales. It's fine if you don't like the last three books. You are not the only person in the world who didn't. But don't insult our intelligence by making things up. 

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I hardly think this was some grand plan by BS to convert all of RJ's followers to run out and buy his books.  As Jennifer said there are no released figures on number of each WOT book that has been sold.  Think it just shows that there isn't anything someone can't come up with a conspiracy theory on. 

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I hardly think this was some grand plan by BS to convert all of RJ's followers to run out and buy his books.  As Jennifer said there are no released figures on number of each WOT book that has been sold.  Think it just shows that there isn't anything someone can't come up with a conspiracy theory on. 

 

Uhhmm not sure why you would try to frame it as a "conspiracy" but are you suggesting that Sanderson's sales figures have not massively benefited from his work on the WoT? It's no secret that Tor was grooming him as their next "big thing" and there certainly was a strategy here. It's smart business for the publisher.

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I hardly think this was some grand plan by BS to convert all of RJ's followers to run out and buy his books.  As Jennifer said there are no released figures on number of each WOT book that has been sold.  Think it just shows that there isn't anything someone can't come up with a conspiracy theory on. 

 

Uhhmm not sure why you would try to frame it as a "conspiracy" but are you suggesting that Sanderson's sales figures have not massively benefited from his work on the WoT? It's no secret that Tor was grooming him as their next "big thing" and there certainly was a strategy here. It's smart business for the publisher.

 

 

Undoubtedly, but I don't think Harriet chose BS because 'Oh I want to boost his sales'.

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Since book sales numbers are rarely released there isn't much of a way to know if BS other books have benefited from him finishing WOT.  I didn't hate what BS did with WOT but I haven't had any urge to run out and get BS other series.  Your a "strategy here" depends on what say TOR had in this, or did Harriet on her own initative approach BS?  Or did TOR push BS towards Harriet and suggest him as a replacement.  The conspiracy I spoke of is that to me the poster made it seems like there was some back room deal with TOR and BS that was the idea of we are going to pounce on this and all WOT readers are suddenly going to be converted to BS series readers. 

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Since book sales numbers are rarely released there isn't much of a way to know if BS other books have benefited from him finishing WOT.

Clearly Tor wasn't banking on it. *sarcasm*

Brandon Sanderson's new four-book contract with Tor Books may be in the region of an eye-watering $2.5 million. The contract covers the first four volumes of Sanderson's Way of Kings series (which he estimates may reach ten volumes) and is apparently separate from his recent deals for the final three Wheel of Time books.

What's happened since then one may ask?

Deep as I am in the process of editing of Words of Radiance, the next blockbuster in the Stormlight Archive series (coming next year!), I couldn’t be more excited that we’ve made our biggest deal ever with Brandon to acquire two more Wax & Wayne books, sequels to The Alloy of Law.

 

Look, I don't think anyone is suggesting that this was the main reason Harriet tagged BS to finish the series. However, it would be naive to think that Tor didn't have a succession plan in place given the fact that their main cash cow was going to end. More so it's pretty absurd to suggest that a relatively new author such as BS didn't get a sales boost and enormous rise in stature from finishing one of the top selling fantasy series of all time.

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would you reconmend a BS book then? I only ask as i have not read one, having peconceptions based on his WoT work, but i could be wrong.

 

As already suggested, the first Mistborn book is a decent read. It's also the best in that series by a way, though. Warbreaker is solid as well, and has the advantage of being standalone.

 

As Barid noted above, Brandon's own works allow him to play to his strengths. Another point is that as all the characters are his own they are consistently written - several characters in WoT were jarringly different between the two authors, but that's not an issue here.

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