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A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY
Luckers

Quality Discussion Thread

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Street, I have to disagree with you on that.  Not to diminish your opinion, but the idea that people can't multitask or can't be fully dedicated without ignoring everything but the specific task is wrong and always has been.

 

As an easy example, L.E. Modesitt Jr.  Who is one of TOR's most prolific authors.  (Seriously, guy has four Fantasy Series plus assorted Sci-Fi going for Tor, over 60 titles published and currently available.  Usually finishes two-three books a year).  While he does focus on writing, he does so not on one specific books or series, from reading his blogs and interviews he seems to hop about, pondering the current state of affairs, researching for one book while he's writing another.  His work is amazing and his attention to detail is equally impressive.

 

So while you may or may not approve of how Sanderson finished the books, or might have certain issues with parts, to say that being on twitter some how equates to a lack of dedication is not remotely appropriate or accurate.  Some people have to focus and be single minded in a task, others can't do it write if they don't look at multiple jobs at once or otherwise distract themselves just a bit.

 

I was throwing that out there as a somewhat humorous attempt to explain the lack of quality in his writing with these books.  I know that some people can work well mutlitasking.  Whether or not constantly tweeting while writing the books affected the quality or not, they still simply are not well written.

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Well,

 

Looks like Fionwe was right and I jumped the gun.  After going back and reading through it again and reading with an open mind, almost all of 37 looks to me like it was written by BS.  It is has his mark all over it.  Filled with inconsistencies and overuse of certain WoTisms that felt totally abnormal in the world.

 

But it was still damn good and was by far his best writing yet.  I THOROUGHLY enjoyed it and actually was convinced that RJ wrote the entire chapter on my first read through.  Great work and a solid ending.  In fact, I would love to know which parts were written by him and which parts were written by RJ (there has got to be some of RJ in that chapter surely) just so I can properly applaud the scenes that were done well enough that it appeared he was RJ.

 

As I am ever critical, the more I read the more I am disappointed in other areas.  Most notably the major plot holes and sloppiness in wrapping up some of the plots that really could have been done much better.  However, chapter 37 - the most important chapter in the last 3 books in my mind (maybe in the series?) - was done fantastically.  My only complaints in that chapter come from Demandred (aside from the scene where he tames Taim) and the whole inconsistency with how Mat's medallion seems to work.  It really was absurd and completely out of the WoT universe to have three guys run up and duel Demandred one at a time.  But....it made for great reading and somehow BS held it together enough that I thoroughly enjoyed it regardless.

 

After chapter 37 it begins going downhill again really.  Slowly at first, but the entire last couple of chapters are very strangely oriented and don't seem to fit with the rest of the novel.

 

Overall - a trainwreck of a book in my opinion; probably the worst one in the entire series for many reasons.  But despite the problems, it's a train wreck that still manages to deliver for me.  I put the book down deeply satisifed and thoroughly glad that we got an ending.

Edited by Mark D

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Mark, does that include the parts you know where Jordan or is it still mainly Sanderson's writing you have issues with?  (Asking honestly, not trying to push that battle again).

 

Street, fair enough, but you're not the only one to bring up the idea that Sanderson was somehow phoning it in.  So my comments seem warranted, though no longer aimed at you. :)

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I honestly dont know what parts of the book have been admittedly written by RJ and by BS.  I know the last couple scenes are RJ so I am assuming that the entire Epilogue is written by him, but other than that I can only speculate.  My initial run through had me so thoroughly satisified with Chapter 37 that I was convinced it was all RJ - it FELT like him.  The more I thought about it though and the more I looked back through it, the more I realized it looked like very little was him.  Yet, Brandon wrote it beautifully.  The timing of the scenes, the feeling of pressure that the Light was losing, it all coming together at the end with Olver blowing the horn...just awesomely timed.

 

Things I felt off that bugged me in Chapter 37...

 

- Demandred.  Pretty much all of him.  What Brandon wrote was epic and it worked well, but it was not WoT and that was not Demandred.  I'm not sure if its quoted, but I always thought Demandred had an aversion to swords?

 

- Gawyn and Galad and Lan charging in and fighting Demandred one by one.  Don't get me wrong, Lan doing this was the absolute pinnacle of the entire book...it was GREAT.  But it really didn't fit in the WoT the way it happened right after Gawyn and Galad.

 

- Foxhead medallions.  I was pretty sure they dont make you mostly invincible to channelers.  They just dissolve weaves that touch you.

 

- Egwene's death scene.  The whole "flame of tar valon" thing didn't feel like it fit into WoT.  The opposite of balefire?  Just not necessary.  I would be surprised if this was in the notes.

 

- The general way that the entire chapter seemed to be designed to satisfy the fans.  Scenes were designed to show the fans what we wanted to see and have been asking for and begging for.  Examples: Tam using his sword and Lan complimenting him, the wonderboys and Lan testing themselves against Demandred, Bela dying, etc.  On one hand this was incredibly awesome, but on the other hand it felt very unlike WoT.

 

So...ya, there was plenty wrong with Chapter 37 in my mind the more I think on it.  But somehow Brandon wrote it in a way that pulled it off and managed to suck me in well enough that I could ignore the inconsistencies and really just enjoy the story.  He had been mostly unable to accomplish this during the rest of his writing - at least for me.

 

On another note, in what I can only assume is RJ's actual ending, it felt really weird to me that the wonder girls were not at least pretend crying.  I also didn't like how we dont know exactly how Rand swapped bodies...and how Nynaeve clearly had nothing to do with it despite all the foreshadowing that she would resurrect Rand in the end.  I didn't think I would like Rand surviving, but it felt right the way RJ wrote it.  I also kind of liked the little saa in his eye and the way he lit his pipe; they were nice little touches that threw in a bit of harmless mystery to an ending that was satisfying.

 

Does anyone know for sure what parts RJ wrote yet aside from the Epilogue scenes?

Edited by Mark D

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Once Rand won, I think the Creator stepped in and swapped the bodies. I don't think that was Alivia waiting in the tunnel, but Nakomi - who was, in fact, the Creator "checking in." I posted a little more on this in the "post aMoL" thread - don't want to derail this one.

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Distracting boot fetishism aside, I really enjoyed the book and found it to be a satisfying ending.  Definitely did not expect to see Egwene die and Rand live!  And happy that Demandred did end up being quite a badass, and that it was Shara and not Murandy.

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- Demandred.  Pretty much all of him.  What Brandon wrote was epic and it worked well, but it was not WoT and that was not Demandred.  I'm not sure if its quoted, but I always thought Demandred had an aversion to swords?

 

I seem to remember that about this aversion to swords as well.  That was one of the many things people brought up to support the Taimandred theory until RJ shot that down. 

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I don't really remember that from Demandred himself, I just assumed we thought it because most of us were in the Taimandred boat until WH put a hole in it.

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I honestly dont know what parts of the book have been admittedly written by RJ and by BS.  I know the last couple scenes are RJ so I am assuming that the entire Epilogue is written by him, but other than that I can only speculate.  My initial run through had me so thoroughly satisified with Chapter 37 that I was convinced it was all RJ - it FELT like him.  The more I thought about it though and the more I looked back through it, the more I realized it looked like very little was him.  Yet, Brandon wrote it beautifully.  The timing of the scenes, the feeling of pressure that the Light was losing, it all coming together at the end with Olver blowing the horn...just awesomely timed.

 

Things I felt off that bugged me in Chapter 37...

 

- Demandred.  Pretty much all of him.  What Brandon wrote was epic and it worked well, but it was not WoT and that was not Demandred.  I'm not sure if its quoted, but I always thought Demandred had an aversion to swords?

 

- Gawyn and Galad and Lan charging in and fighting Demandred one by one.  Don't get me wrong, Lan doing this was the absolute pinnacle of the entire book...it was GREAT.  But it really didn't fit in the WoT the way it happened right after Gawyn and Galad.

 

- Foxhead medallions.  I was pretty sure they dont make you mostly invincible to channelers.  They just dissolve weaves that touch you.

 

- Egwene's death scene.  The whole "flame of tar valon" thing didn't feel like it fit into WoT.  The opposite of balefire?  Just not necessary.  I would be surprised if this was in the notes.

 

- The general way that the entire chapter seemed to be designed to satisfy the fans.  Scenes were designed to show the fans what we wanted to see and have been asking for and begging for.  Examples: Tam using his sword and Lan complimenting him, the wonderboys and Lan testing themselves against Demandred, Bela dying, etc.  On one hand this was incredibly awesome, but on the other hand it felt very unlike WoT.

 

So...ya, there was plenty wrong with Chapter 37 in my mind the more I think on it.  But somehow Brandon wrote it in a way that pulled it off and managed to suck me in well enough that I could ignore the inconsistencies and really just enjoy the story.  He had been mostly unable to accomplish this during the rest of his writing - at least for me.

 

On another note, in what I can only assume is RJ's actual ending, it felt really weird to me that the wonder girls were not at least pretend crying.  I also didn't like how we dont know exactly how Rand swapped bodies...and how Nynaeve clearly had nothing to do with it despite all the foreshadowing that she would resurrect Rand in the end.  I didn't think I would like Rand surviving, but it felt right the way RJ wrote it.  I also kind of liked the little saa in his eye and the way he lit his pipe; they were nice little touches that threw in a bit of harmless mystery to an ending that was satisfying.

 

Does anyone know for sure what parts RJ wrote yet aside from the Epilogue scenes?

 

 

I strongly think that Egwene's death scene fits very well into Wheel of Time- better than many realize.   I think we have finally learned the fate of the Jenn Aiel.

Edited by Traslyn1

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I can't find where, but I remember taim's lack of smiling as well as demandred's lack of smiling.  Then there was taim's disdain for the sword when rand wanted to train the asha'man, then something about demandred feeling the same way. 

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I can't find where, but I remember taim's lack of smiling as well as demandred's lack of smiling.  Then there was taim's disdain for the sword when rand wanted to train the asha'man, then something about demandred feeling the same way. 

Okay after searching I can't find anything that supports demandred not being a good swordsman

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I really mourn the loss of subtlety post KoD. Do we have to be hammered over the head with almost everything? This quote  is pretty minor but these things add up once you come across them over and over and over again:

 

AMoL

Lyrelle held in a sneer. Aes Sedai should not be cheerful. Aes Sedai should be calm, collected, and-if anything else-stern. A man should look at an Aes Sedai and immediately wonder what he had done wrong and how he could fix it.

I mean seriously, how does something like that ever get past an editor.

Edited by Suttree

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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.

Just read the book,  the ending could have been better, just like Harry Potter, it is one slaughter house, Rand, Egwene and Gawyn died, final scene was just like that painting of Rand on a funeral pyre with three ladies surrounding him, with a ying and yang in the background. It did not conclude what was started, like it started from the Two River and what happen to Mat and Egwene parents at finding out their fates?

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I'm really glad that type of thing didn't happen earlier in the series; it's what made me stop reading A Song of Ice and Fire after the first book and a half. If characters are just going to be randomly dying everywhere, I'm not going to let myself make any emotional attachments to any of them, and then what's the point of an epic fantasy series? 

 

That is what makes a fictional character death have impact though, when you actually care about their fate.  There is certainly an art to writing a character's death appropriately timing wise, and it does not fit every story to be death heavy.  It is also a sign of a talented writer if they can kill off a character you love and then introduce another strong character into the story that sucks you in, plus you now have legitimate tension that something bad may happen to them.  I do think ASOIAF has an unfair reputation in regards to killing characters, there is a lot of death but most are secondary or people that do not have POVs.

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Guest PiotrekS
I really mourn the loss of subtlety post KoD. Do we have to be hammered over the head with almost everything? This quote  is pretty minor but these things add up once you come across them over and over and over again:

 

AMoL

Lyrelle held in a sneer. Aes Sedai should not be cheerful. Aes Sedai should be calm, collected, and-if anything else-stern. A man should look at an Aes Sedai and immediately wonder what he had done wrong and how he could fix it.

I mean seriously, how does something like that ever get past an editor.

 

I wouldn't put all the blame on Brandon, though surely he's the main culprit. For me, the lack of subtlety begun as early as CoT/KoD, with the interactions between the Amyrlin Egwene and various Aes Sedai, dumbing down of Siuan etc.

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Finished the book. I had to sit and digest it for a while.

 

It felt like the first 1/2 to 2/3 were written carefully but then crashed to then. Some things were done quickly, too quickly.

 

Eg breaking the seals?! I was expecting more than that.

Birgitte having her head chopped off - Mellar just appeared and bam off it goes.

Lan - did he die or not? Is he tied to the horn now? I'm going to re read as confused by a lot of things!

I loved the Olver scene blowing the horn although why didn't the heros go to him? Only noal?

Egwene's death was awesome but what was the crystals thing all about? her calling down the power felt like LTT and what he did in his madness but there was no real explanation.

Did I miss the crystal throne stuff - I can't remember the prophecy exactly but it didn't "work" for me.

 

Moghedien being captured and made damane - I thought having one forsaken left could have been made interesting - without the DO what would she have become? But instead she's collared. I would have liked that thread to have remained untied as it were.

 

I was glad that Perrin found Faile.

 

Also the compulsion stuff and great captains - felt odd but I liked the idea.

 

And the tinkers - no song for them...?

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Lan - did he die or not? Is he tied to the horn now? I'm going to re read as confused by a lot of things!

 

NO and no.


I loved the Olver scene blowing the horn although why didn't the heros go to him? Only noal?

 

Dragon Banner?


 

Edited by WhiskyJack

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I honestly dont know what parts of the book have been admittedly written by RJ and by BS.  I know the last couple scenes are RJ so I am assuming that the entire Epilogue is written by him, but other than that I can only speculate.  My initial run through had me so thoroughly satisified with Chapter 37 that I was convinced it was all RJ - it FELT like him.  The more I thought about it though and the more I looked back through it, the more I realized it looked like very little was him.  Yet, Brandon wrote it beautifully.  The timing of the scenes, the feeling of pressure that the Light was losing, it all coming together at the end with Olver blowing the horn...just awesomely timed.

 

Things I felt off that bugged me in Chapter 37...

 

- Demandred.  Pretty much all of him.  What Brandon wrote was epic and it worked well, but it was not WoT and that was not Demandred.  I'm not sure if its quoted, but I always thought Demandred had an aversion to swords?

 

- Gawyn and Galad and Lan charging in and fighting Demandred one by one.  Don't get me wrong, Lan doing this was the absolute pinnacle of the entire book...it was GREAT.  But it really didn't fit in the WoT the way it happened right after Gawyn and Galad.

 

- Foxhead medallions.  I was pretty sure they dont make you mostly invincible to channelers.  They just dissolve weaves that touch you.

 

- Egwene's death scene.  The whole "flame of tar valon" thing didn't feel like it fit into WoT.  The opposite of balefire?  Just not necessary.  I would be surprised if this was in the notes.

 

- The general way that the entire chapter seemed to be designed to satisfy the fans.  Scenes were designed to show the fans what we wanted to see and have been asking for and begging for.  Examples: Tam using his sword and Lan complimenting him, the wonderboys and Lan testing themselves against Demandred, Bela dying, etc.  On one hand this was incredibly awesome, but on the other hand it felt very unlike WoT.

 

So...ya, there was plenty wrong with Chapter 37 in my mind the more I think on it.  But somehow Brandon wrote it in a way that pulled it off and managed to suck me in well enough that I could ignore the inconsistencies and really just enjoy the story.  He had been mostly unable to accomplish this during the rest of his writing - at least for me.

 

On another note, in what I can only assume is RJ's actual ending, it felt really weird to me that the wonder girls were not at least pretend crying.  I also didn't like how we dont know exactly how Rand swapped bodies...and how Nynaeve clearly had nothing to do with it despite all the foreshadowing that she would resurrect Rand in the end.  I didn't think I would like Rand surviving, but it felt right the way RJ wrote it.  I also kind of liked the little saa in his eye and the way he lit his pipe; they were nice little touches that threw in a bit of harmless mystery to an ending that was satisfying.

 

Does anyone know for sure what parts RJ wrote yet aside from the Epilogue scenes?

 

 

I strongly think that Egwene's death scene fits very well into Wheel of Time- better than many realize.   I think we have finally learned the fate of the Jenn Aiel.

 

Her death sequence fit in well, but some of the details surrounding it were ridiculous.  The Flame of Tar Valon?  Anti-balefire?  That is just absurd stuff that didn't feel like it belonged in the WoT world.  I feel like those were both definitely Brandon inventions, and if they were not then he handled their implementation very poorly.  He could have written a perfectly wonderful death scene with Egwene that was nearly the same thing except just having her explode like LTT from too much One Power and killed everyone that way.  And then just have someone look in wonder and say "The Flamer of Tar Valon...."

 

But that's always been my personal peeve with Brandon.  He feels the need to ADD things to the canon.  And typically the tid bits that he adds don't belong in the WoT world and they feel very much off.  Take the use of gateways in aMoL for example.  Was the use of them extremely creative and really neat to see in the story?  Yes, it definitely was.  However, it felt very much unlike the way RJ would have implemented those into the story.  We have thousands of pages of notes and story that clearly define gateways and their usage...WHY did Brandon feel the need to totally redefine their implementation in aMoL?  The whole anti-balefire and Egwene exploding with it really felt the same to me despite how well it was written and how well it worked in the story.

 

I just happened to like the WoT world the way it was and really don't like seeing fantasy elements from other worlds just zip on over for literally no reason other than the new author wants to be creative.  So...ya tidbits like Egwene's death details annoy the hell out of me even though it was a great read and for once I got through a massive part of the book while being able to overlook the inconsistencies and enjoy it.

Edited by Mark D

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There is no way the flame of Tar Valon was a Brandon invention. There is absolutely no way for that to pass team jordan. for starters, Egwene died. second, the plot device itself is a bit major.  At best, Brandon just didn't do it as well as some of you would have liked.

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I'm sure that Egwene dying was part of RJ's plan, but the details of it likely were all left to Brandon.  Maybe not...I dont know if we'll ever find out.  To me, it feels like Brandons creative touch.  But...it very well could have been in the notes and it just feels like Brandons addition because he wrote the whole thing.

Edited by Mark D

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There is no way the flame of Tar Valon was a Brandon invention. There is absolutely no way for that to pass team jordan. for starters, Egwene died. second, the plot device itself is a bit major. At best, Brandon just didn't do it as well as some of you would have liked.

While we don't know either way we have to keep in mind that Brandon had to make up a huge amount of new material. The notes were far less robust than many of us originally believed. For instance at times they would say character a starts here and ends here. Brandon would have to make up everything I'm between. Not saying that is the case here but it certainly is possible he had to create the details.

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I said this earlier in another thread that the Flame of Tar Valon is one heck of a CHEESY way to take out Taim. I'm hoping someone can discover some cleverly hidden foreshadowing to explain it. Also hope that someone can interview BS and get some enlightenment referencing the mystery weave

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While we don't know either way we have to keep in mind that Brandon had to make up a huge amount of new material. The notes were far less robust than many of us originally believed. For instance at times they would say character a starts here and ends here. Brandon would have to make up everything I'm between. Not saying that is the case here but it certainly is possible he had to create the details.

 

In the interviews that were posted this week, Brandon said he wrote Egwene's death scene, came up with Lan's final scene in ToM, and that it had been his idea to reunite Rand with Tam. Now that the final book is out, I have a feeling we're going to hear more about who wrote what, and that many fans will be surprised at how much Brandon had to come up with on his own.

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