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Quality Discussion Thread

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This thread will serve the purpose that the Thisguy thread has served on the Pre-release board. Basically it’s for all discussion of the quality of aMoL, and permits all forms of critique (positive or negative) and discussion thereof. What it does not permit is personal attacks against Brandon or Team Jordan--"I don't like Brandon as a writer" is okay, "I hate Brandon" is not, and will be met with like any other personal attack.

 

In addition, people are under specific instruction in this thread to be on their best behaviour. It's a charged topic, whatever your position, but personal attacks and abusive behaviour will not be tolerated.

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This thread will serve the purpose that the Thisguy thread has served on the Pre-release board. Basically it’s for all discussion of the quality of aMoL, and permits all forms of critique (positive or negative) and discussion thereof. What it does not permit is personal attacks against Brandon or Team Jordan--"I don't like Brandon as a writer" is okay, "I hate Brandon" is not, and will be met with like any other personal attack.

 

In addition, people are under specific instruction in this thread to be on their best behaviour. It's a charged topic, whatever your position, but personal attacks and abusive behaviour will not be tolerated.

 

Thank you for posting this as cleanly as you have well in advance of the release Luckers.   You know with some of the readers that they will take the opportunity to flame as they wish to.  Have a good day and I hope your new year is a great one for you.

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I thought it was beautiful, but then again I am one of those who don't agree with most of the critique, so I guess I don't have much to say :laugh: I really don't have anything to complain about. I would like to thank Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson, and Team Jordan, for giving me this beautiful ending to a story I love. I admire and respect Brandon for the work he has done; he was given an enormously difficult task and has solved it as well as anyone could have. Nobody can replace Robert Jordan. But Sanderson did his best, in my eyes. I know my opinion is shared by very few, and I'll probably get shot down here. Don't bother; I've read all the arguments. I just don't see things the same way, and that's me :)

 

Life is a dream that we must all wake from.This particular part of the dream is over. And I'm so grateful.

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What an amazing book! I have to say, I was never bored for a minute. I don't want to get into a detailed literary critique, but I one thing did irritate me. It's really my only complaint. I didn't like how often some behavior or event that has been referenced and defined/described will again be referenced and so forth again and in basically the same way. Redundant! For instance, in one chapter the burning of certain fields and the reason for doing so is described and explained, and one or two paragraphs later, a character is described as walking through a field which had been burned, and again the same explanation for the burnt field is repeated. That happened like 20 times for various themes/events.

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I thought it was beautiful, but then again I am one of those who don't agree with most of the critique, so I guess I don't have much to say :laugh: I really don't have anything to complain about. I would like to thank Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson, and Team Jordan, for giving me this beautiful ending to a story I love. I admire and respect Brandon for the work he has done; he was given an enormously difficult task and has solved it as well as anyone could have. Nobody can replace Robert Jordan. But Sanderson did his best, in my eyes. I know my opinion is shared by very few, and I'll probably get shot down here. Don't bother; I've read all the arguments. I just don't see things the same way, and that's me :)

 

Life is a dream that we must all wake from.This particular part of the dream is over. And I'm so grateful.

 

 

Agreed, Misheru.  I haven't been blessed with an advance copy of the book and will have to wait for January 8th.  But I feel the same way.  Brandon took on a task which is impossible to satisfy everyone.  Thanks to everyone who put in their time and effort to bring it all to a close.  The Light shine on all of you!!!

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over the ending, you can debate on it...some will like it , others will hate it...but no one can possible hate the battle itself.

 

It was brilliant, i have never read anything like this.This is what a last battle should be like, not couple hours of battle...and bamm it is over.

 

No, it was days or weeks of desperate fighting, with massacre with sacrafices, with mistakes and brilliant (multiple) duels.

 

That with at least 35 povs , all in one chapter.

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I just wanted to say one thing on this, for now:

 

There was a point in time when I was ready to scream with frustration the next time I read the phrase "anger of the Amyrlin" again. Gah!

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i like it. its not the best written one, but for pure scope and gravitas i think it is the best. plus its an ending (of sorts ;) ), finally.

 

i didnt like the cheese of 'the flame of tar valon'. also egwene's rants get reptitive. we get it your the amyrylin...

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I didn't feel this book.  I felt disconnected from it.  I didn't care when any character died really.  It felt like the whole book was just describing  the 'outside' of events while nothing took place 'inside' or rather inside the characters views and perceptions if this makes any sense.

 

While people might like one huge action sequence and I do, the flaw to me I think is that you're never given a chance with the characters at all.  Why is this?  Because they get a couple pages then it's on to the next character. 

 

When 2/3's of the borderlanders died, I didn't care.  All I really remember is Tenobia being surrounded and Lan figuring out that Agelmar was screwing them, they retreat.  I guess I can try to put words to it to explain it right but in the end I just didn't feel it.  The thing that I always loved about this series were the characters and their interactions with each other, it always felt real to me or at least it was entertaining and interesting, not so with AMOL.  Sorry for not being very articulate at describing my impressions but words like bland, flat, stale come to mind.  Whack a mole here for a couple pages, whack a mole there and we'll all dance with the jak o shadows and THE END!

Edited by ScoundreltheToy

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I didn't feel this book.  I felt disconnected from it.  I didn't care when any character died really.  It felt like the whole book was just describing  the 'outside' of events while nothing took place 'inside' or rather inside the characters views and perceptions if this makes any sense.

 

While people might like one huge action sequence and I do, the flaw to me I think is that you're never given a chance with the characters at all.  Why is this?  Because they get a couple pages then it's on to the next character. 

 

When 2/3's of the borderlanders died, I didn't care.  All I really remember is Tenobia being surrounded and Lan figuring out that Agelmar was screwing them, they retreat.  I guess I can try to put words to it to explain it right but in the end I just didn't feel it.  The thing that I always loved about this series were the characters and their interactions with each other, it always felt real to me or at least it was entertaining and interesting, not so with AMOL.  Sorry for not being very articulate at describing my impressions but words like bland, flat, stale come to mind.  Whack a mole here for a couple pages, whack a mole there and we'll all dance with the jak o shadows and THE END!

I get what you're saying, but it wasn't this way all the time. It came every now and then.

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I don't know, I can't agree that only having a few pages a character hurt it when it's the end of the book.  We've had the rest of the series to know and care about these characters. 

 

I understand the concern about that type of outside view.  There's various stories that I've never been able to get into purely because they start that way and it takes forever to get to the individuals, but when they end on the big picture I can still feel for each of the people, even if only for a few pages.

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The pace of the book felt rushed to me. Too much stuff happens too fast and you don't get the chance to take it in. People die off screen left and right. Every time I started to feel something about a scene, whether it excitement or sadness, it was already over and to the next scene entirely. The book was still good but it was the weakest of the last 3.

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Just a few examples of things that stood out to me:

 

  • the excessive use of the word "anyway" to being a sentence.
  • stalactites & stalacmites.  I understand those are the technical terms, but using scientific terminology in a world where science is still primitive takes me out of the fantasy.
  • when perrin notes that slayer stitched himself up like a "master surgeon".  This is a world of healers who use herbs and being healed by the one power.  I don't ever remember surgery being described.
  • The use of "so" to begin a sentence.
  • RAND'S SPEECHES IN CAPITAL LETTERS.  IT LOST ITS MEANING AFTER A WHILE.

 

 

I don't want it to seem like I didn't enjoy the book. because I did enjoy the story and the satisfaction of knowing how it ended, but I don't think Brandon Sanderson quite understood the "timeless" writing style that Robert Jordan used.  Part of what I enjoyed most of the series was getting lost in the story.  BS used so much current language and terms that I felt constantly pulled from the fantasy.  I really wish he had taken advantage of the hardcore fans who offered to polish the stories. 

 

So I'm not totally picking on BS, I am grateful that someone did finish the series.  I'd rather have an imperfect ending than no ending at all.

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What would you call it instead of a Stalactite?    As for Surgeon, there's actually quite a lot of stitching and references to battle surgeons earlier in the books.  Mat has been stitched up quite a few times.

 

While the anyway and so might be valid points, the idea that Brandon started using modern words when Jordan didn't is a bit off as well.

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Just a single example of the stalactites.  This is from Demandred's visit in LoC:

 

Jagged spikes jutted from the ceiling, stony teeth ready to snap shut, the Great Lord's teeth to rend the unfaithful or the traitor.  Not natural, of course, but effective.

 

 

As far as the surgeon comment.  It wasn't the stitching that stood out.  I didn't describe correctly what stood out.  It was that Perrin thought of a "master surgeon" when he comes from a town whose medicine is provided by a Wise Woman.  Why would he know the concept of not only a medical professional title that didn't exist in that world, but a master of it?  I even used the WoT search, the word surgeon doesn't appear once in books 1-11.  I think that more effort could have put into the story to make it sound more timeless.

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Just a single example of the stalactites.  This is from Demandred's visit in LoC:

 

Jagged spikes jutted from the ceiling, stony teeth ready to snap shut, the Great Lord's teeth to rend the unfaithful or the traitor.  Not natural, of course, but effective.

 

 

As far as the surgeon comment.  It wasn't the stitching that stood out.  I didn't describe correctly what stood out.  It was that Perrin thought of a "master surgeon" when he comes from a town whose medicine is provided by a Wise Woman.  Why would he know the concept of not only a medical professional title that didn't exist in that world, but a master of it?  I even used the WoT search, the word surgeon doesn't appear once in books 1-11.  I think that more effort could have put into the story to make it sound more timeless.

 

This unfortunately has just been a consequence of the BS done books. I come down on the side of Brandon did a good job, but words like "homicide" in TOM just really shouldn't pass muster since they're so, so jarring, and so unbelievably easy to fix.

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'Crackbrain' was a word that threw me off...

But let me first be unfair: I recently reread the Hobbit, and aMoL is not Tolkin. WOT had something Tolkin had not, with the unique characters and so on, but Tolkin had the end right. The end is important in all things. aMoL just finished. No closure.

The book was good, great even, but on the last 20 or so pages you felt that the writing crew was exhausted. You felt that the writing crew was under timing pressure, that there was not time to put this project away for a year and then edit it again. If you don't hold a professorship you probably cannot spent 5 years working on a single book in order to survive - but you can feel the difference. It is the difference between a great work of fantasy (like Hobbit, LoTR, many WoT books), and a normal, entertaining read (which is still leagues away and better than anything Nicholls or Hohlbein have written).

It should have finished for the main characters with a climactic scene, or a flowing-out scene... Rand and Mat had horrible last scenes. Birgitte had a good one, as did Cadsuane.

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Guest PiotrekS

I just wanted to say one thing on this, for now:

 

There was a point in time when I was ready to scream with frustration the next time I read the phrase "anger of the Amyrlin" again. Gah!

Oh oh.

I'm putting a glass of some good, strong liquor next to me when I start reading and I'll take a generous sip every time I encounter this or similar phrase. I can't go through them any other way. I suspect I'll get drunk very fast.

 

 

Just a single example of the stalactites.  This is from Demandred's visit in LoC:

 

Jagged spikes jutted from the ceiling, stony teeth ready to snap shut, the Great Lord's teeth to rend the unfaithful or the traitor.  Not natural, of course, but effective.

 

 

As far as the surgeon comment.  It wasn't the stitching that stood out.  I didn't describe correctly what stood out.  It was that Perrin thought of a "master surgeon" when he comes from a town whose medicine is provided by a Wise Woman.  Why would he know the concept of not only a medical professional title that didn't exist in that world, but a master of it?  I even used the WoT search, the word surgeon doesn't appear once in books 1-11.  I think that more effort could have put into the story to make it sound more timeless.

 

This unfortunately has just been a consequence of the BS done books. I come down on the side of Brandon did a good job, but words like "homicide" in TOM just really shouldn't pass muster since they're so, so jarring, and so unbelievably easy to fix.

Well, as far as writing is concerned, BS has everything it takes to make a great writer...except the command of the language. I think he should try screenplays and such, It's not enough to have good ideas and good work ethics to write good literature. You need to care about words, and I don't think he does.

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So have to admit I'm struggling a bit. Don't get me wrong, there are some great sections and of course I'm loving getting an ending to this story. One of the the things bugging me is that some characters voices just entirely blend into one another. There is quite literally zero distinction once you get past the main characters at times. For instance in when the Great Captains are planning with Elayne and they each repeat "yes" and a few of them say "I like it" over and over again. Each one of them sounds as if they are talking to themselves in a mirror. In other places the dialog just comes across as rough and extremely blunt.

 

To be clear I still have a ways to go and there are things I have very much enjoyed. Fingers crossed that some of these issues smooth out as I go like some reviewers have indicated.

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This unfortunately has just been a consequence of the BS done books. I come down on the side of Brandon did a good job, but words like "homicide" in TOM just really shouldn't pass muster since they're so, so jarring, and so unbelievably easy to fix.

Well, as far as writing is concerned, BS has everything it takes to make a great writer...except the command of the language. I think he should try screenplays and such, It's not enough to have good ideas and good work ethics to write good literature. You need to care about words, and I don't think he does.

 

I don't think that it's a fundamental problem with him as a writer. His characters use modern terminology in his own books (which I think are great).

 

But seeing them in Wot is jarring and takes me out of the story. Just to pick a few of the top of my head...Nynaeve calls Rand "paranoid"...Perrin offers "medical" assistance to the Whitecloaks...Soriela refers to "off-duty" windfinders....Slayer refers to the Two Rivers "operation," etc. This isn't how people in WoT talk.

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Guest PiotrekS
This unfortunately has just been a consequence of the BS done books. I come down on the side of Brandon did a good job, but words like "homicide" in TOM just really shouldn't pass muster since they're so, so jarring, and so unbelievably easy to fix.

Well, as far as writing is concerned, BS has everything it takes to make a great writer...except the command of the language. I think he should try screenplays and such, It's not enough to have good ideas and good work ethics to write good literature. You need to care about words, and I don't think he does.

 

I don't think that it's a fundamental problem with him as a writer. His characters use modern terminology in his own books (which I think are great).

 

But seeing them in Wot is jarring and takes me out of the story. Just to pick a few of the top of my head...Nynaeve calls Rand "paranoid"...Perrin offers "medical" assistance to the Whitecloaks...Soriela refers to "off-duty" windfinders....Slayer refers to the Two Rivers "operation," etc. This isn't how people in WoT talk.

 

The examples you provided support my point - I think that Brandon cares about conveing ideas, but about the way in which they're conveyed - not so much. It would be so easy to avoid those jarring linguistical discrepancies but he didn't. Maybe some readers don't care about the language if the story is interesting, but I do.

Many great writers are known for endlessly working on their texts, looking for that perfect word, perfect sentence.

 

The "timeless" language used by RJ - not archaized, but devoid of modern words - was a very important feature of the books. Respecting it would not be "imitating RJ's style" but simply staying faithful to the spirit of the series.

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Halfway through right now and I actually am starting to think that we would have been better off without the last two books.  It really is that bad so far.  The characters all read identical and the entire thing reads as if it's just one long run-on battle scene where all of our beloved characters have been tossed away and we just get to watch from the outside as they fight endless ranks of trollocs with no purpose.  Absolutely no purpose.

 

The level of my disappointment so far is so extensive that I am no longer faulting Sanderson as much as I have in the past.  He didn't even have a chance to finish this thing.  He literally had no chance and should never have tried.  Hence why it feels like he gave up and just got this thing off his desk as fast as possible.  He was so far beneath being capable of finishing this series that he was drowning and gave up.

 

I am praying that it improves when I read the parts RJ wrote himself.

Edited by Mark D

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Guest PiotrekS

Its actually so bad that I dont even want to finish the book and I just want to hear what happens in summary form now.  :(

I feel for you, Mark. That's why I went to the spoiler forums in the first place, having lost my enjoyment  of the books themselves after having to force myself through TGS.

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