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  1. That he wanted anything specific from Artur to Tuon seems a stretch to me... I thought he simply wanted street cred with his wife... Artur, whom she reveres, is on speaking terms with Mat... pretty cool for just a Toy, huh, Tuon? Maybe you best rethink where Mat stands... That kind of thing.
  2. I have finished the first five books in Martin's series, and I do really like it. Not as nostalgic for me as WOT... maybe because I come from a very rural, country, Southern family...even though I've lived in Atlanta now for years...so I really relate to the Two Rivers gang... especially Nynaeve's and Perrin's conservativeness even thought they are out in the world...and Mat's eternal complaining about doing the right thing even though in the end he'd never do anything but the right thing. With Martin, I love Jon, Arya, Tyrion and Melisandre, who scares me and fascinates me at the same time! Also, I'm intrigued with Bran and his newest "situation". I need something else though, because I decided after one episode of the TV series that the characters would never fit my imagination, so I'm skipping them... and it's my understanding after starting the series late that I could wait yearssssssss in between books now that I'm caught up.
  3. The thing that sets WOT apart for me is the extensive development of the characters over a long course of time...even of secondary characters. The individual biases... the internal struggles vs. the perceptions of characters by others... an important and knowledgeable character like Moiraine who has a power that most have still being biased against Perrin's abilities because they are an "older" magic. Laras being deveoped enough that you can believe she would help Min or Egwene. It really makes you believe in them, and by extension the well developed world they live in. The world development is only a hair behind this for me... again, the extensive development of the power/magic system and all the details make me believe in this world. Jordan was the first person for me to come close or equal to Tolkien in this regard... but I put character development first because Tolkien wasn't a good as Jordan at developing his characters. Many of his are a little more iconic... not because he wasn't an excellent storyteller, but I think because he was more of a legend creator, and thus his characters were a little more iconic than real like Jordan's. Tolkien did end up doing a better job of creating an epilogue for every main character...largely through the Appendices. I think many of our frustrations with the tiny details at the end of AMOL are caused by Sanderson's respect for Jordan... if the epilogue of certain characters wasn't written out by Jordan, he didn't make it up... It's as if he was okay with creating new material for a character to get them from A to a Jordan preset B, but creating new material at the end scared him. I can understand that... I just think it frustrated those of us who grew up reading every bit of Tolkien's Appendices and Silmarillion to flesh out our characters' storylines. The fact that I knew I was investing all this time in a single storyline was also really important to me, and one of my favorite things about this series. I was a Lost fan and a Fringe fan because each was a completed series with an over arching story. I despise Fantasy that creates a successful stand alone book or trilogy that suddenly morphs into a continuously running soap opera with no end in sight... that is very false for me. WOT series could have been several books longer and I would have been completely fine because I knew I was working towards a goal, and I wanted to enjoy every minute of the journey for as long as possible. I cannot say enough good about this series... truly one of the most impactful reads for me in my life. If anyone can tell me of another series this good to start on next... one with an over arching storyline like this... I'd greatly appreciate it!!
  4. More Nynaeve in general would have been nice!
  5. Nynaeve... she has that same "from the country and proud of it but so influenced by the world and the exotic" attitude that I do. She has flaws... but she's actually growing. Powerful, and has always used it (and will continue to use it post AMOL) in a useful way. Mat and Perrin next out of the original group. Then Moiraine and Verin. Verin may actually be the coolest character from the series. Wonder who will be Elayne's advisor now that Nyn has a kingdom of her own to rebuild?
  6. On coining "The Bond Girls"... thanks... I just kept thinking of Mr. Perfect 6'6" standing on Dragonmount with sword raised high and three hot, capable women in various poses around him with knives, spear, or a cutting look and raised chin... LOL... Edsel
  7. I'm not sure she was BA, but if she was, perhaps Verin didn't put her in the list because either A) she could never confirm it, or B) she had tested Alanna, as she had Cadsuanne, and felt that she was sure Alanna would end up returning to the light and/or that she could use Alanna in some way to help Rand... as a sacrifice of one of the Bond Girls or whatever. She is Verin, after all... she doesn't have to tell Egwene everything that she knows. The frustrating thing is that Alanna's motivation could be explained by being BA or not... she could have bonded Rand because she thought it would move her up in the esteem of the Shadow.... or she could just have been an overconfident, cougarish Green... she does seem "hurt" when he is bonded with other women on his own and pushes her to the back of his mind. Just a little more hinting would have been nice.
  8. Let me see if I can boil it down for you: Army X and army Y are in a war. Neither is able to win against the other. Army X is at peace with other nations. Army Y is not precisely a nation, and while nominally allied with other nations, cannot violate their land, or use any of their resources. When they attack the holdings of army X, they need to use Gateways. They themselves have only one major city in a desert waste, and as such, while being brilliant warriors, don't have the logistical depth to defeat the other army. They hold on because of their extraordinary valor. Now, in an altered scenario, army Y has the right to call on the armies of all the nations. They can freely move in all the nations, and are responsible for maintaining peace between them, including the lands of army X. Being able to move through the lands of army X, they can study them, and understand their behaviors. When they attack, they attack with the combined forces of all the nations under them, and get to coordinate the attacks, as they have the mandate to do so. Rather than a few dozen different strategies for a dozen different wars with army X, all the nations are part of one war effort. They don't enter the conflict one at a time, they enter together. In the first case, army X fights army Y to a standstill. Then Andor-Cairhein joins the war. Then, in indeterminate order, the other nations join in. In the alternate scenario, there is no such time gap. There is no "fighting to a standstill" over several generations. Its a unified war effort from the start. Get it? In altered scenario there may not even be a war. Period. We already know the future is changed in that the Dragon's Peace does not allow the Seanchan to enter Arad Doman... only part of Almoth Plain... so in altered version they won't be in Arad Doman for Padra (who may no longer be named Padra) to skirmish with them and instigate the Aiel to go to war with them... plus the Aiel are also part of the Dragon's Peace in altered version, and should by their honor and valor only punish the Seanchan IF they break the peace. There also may be no Oncala to withhold letters stating that the Seanchan are only considering breaking the peace in case the Randlanders break it first. So Oncala (if she remains Oncala) will probably not encourage the nations to war with the Seanchan unless they break the peace... Even in unaltered scenario Ronam held the old Empress... Tuon... as a woman of honor and said that an agreement was almost reached with her (concerning the Wise Ones, I'm sure)... In altered scenario who says Tuon may not actually come to just such an agreement? Are you so sure Mat can't convince her to keep the peace? I am willing to bet on him. Call me a sucker for love.... and I do think she loves him. AND... the next Empress will be Mat's daughter. Don't you think he might teach her to continue keep the peace?? Again, I think the demise of the damane will happen over a long, long, long period and from within. Plus Rand wants the peace. And with his new powers, can't he just will it so? LOL ok that last part was just me being facitious.....
  9. Nynaeve also healed compulsion, but it left the person a mindless idiot and they died. She's my favorite, but don't know if all things can be healed. However, I would think it would be worth trying, because even if it went awry, their souls are lost anyway... so Nyn would have disappointment, but not guilt, if you know what I mean. Plus, if they immediately died, but died in the Light, at least they could be reborn in the Light. So either way, it's worth the try, and I'm SURE Nyn will try it.
  10. Asmodean was always a favorite, just because I wanted him to return to the Light. But the reak "bad boys" my favorites were two of the girls... Lanfear when she was Selene, and Graendal when she was still beautiful and saved herself and allowed Aran'gar to take the heat... so to speak...
  11. He saw stabily in Altara a land that couldn't control anyting outside of it's capital city. Regardless we know that peace and stability is at least in part false just more Seanchan propganda. People are not in fact content and happy. Kared mentions putting down "numerous" rebellions in his time with the DW guards and we have seekers discussing "sedition" in various districts. In Randland proper both Arad Doman and Tarabon are in revolt. So while yest they provided stability to one country that had never such it is not near what the Blood would have you believe and it comes at far too great a cost. That is the smallest 1% that can rise to such levels. The rest are not treated well and they can be bought and sold like cattle. Keep in mind that per the BWB Seanchan is a place where: This is obviously not true. There is quite a bit different but even the treatment of damane alone is enough to show how wrong they are. They quite literally strip a persons very identity and turn them into something sub human. One day your daughter or son will wake up, fail a test and be ripped away never to be seen again. We have seen the results of the torture and reconditioning and it is beyond sickening. The practice is abhorent and needs to stop. End of. There is no comparison between this and anything the AS have done. Whether the AS are without sin is utterly beside the point. They have been the main bastion against the shadow for 3,000 years and have saved the world a couple times over. In regards to severing men there was no other option pre-cleansing and we know Cadsuane at least had a method that integrated men back into society post severing and allowed them to live almost a normal life span. As I said, I'm not a proponent of Seanchan ways... just saying that it's deeply ingrained and change will take time. AND, if Mat first steers them towards the retaking of Seanchan and the united forces of Randland still cross their territories, it will be Randland and the Aiel who break the treaty. And that is exactly what I see Mat doing. He's not going to want to take up the day to day responsibilies of Prince Consort in Randland anyway... he's going to want to enjoy the game of retaking Seanchan as Battle General. You seem to see the Seanchan as probably breaking the treaty first. From Avi's vision, and with Mat's influence, I don't see that happening, even if they consider contingencies. Avi was definitely more horrified with her descendants misleading the world about the contingencies than she was about the contingencies themselves. As Tuon as argued many times, one should only be tried for what they do... not what they are capable of or what they consider. I agree that these books mark the beginning of the end of the institution of damane... I just think it's going to take much longer many others of you. My personality is much more Nynaeve's in regards to what I see as right or wrong...like her, much of it has to do with my small town, even bucolic upbringing. But I have to say that the books themselves would not have been as enjoyable without Tuon and the Seanchan...even if I don't like everything they do. And being like Nynaeve, I'm not sure I could be as calculating as Elayne, Egwene, or Tuon... whether to be the bastion of the light (kidnapping? really?) like the AS or to protect my Empire like Tuon. That's why I'm not a leader. But as a reader, I'm just able to enjoy Tuon's role in the book...and admit that Egwene and Elayne often irritated me.
  12. Wow... such vitrol for the Seanchan! LOL... My 2 cents worth on a couple of issues, which I guess is worth about as much as 2 U.S. cents... We don't know that Hawking was against anything that Tuon was doing with Seanchan. He bent the world to his thumb. He looked at Mat and said it would be enjoyable to try to kill each other in Battle. He was from a much, much earlier and harder period... And after Tuon's off screen meeting with him, she didn't indicate in any way to Mat that she had any thoughts about changing her culture. In fact, she now teases that she can kill Mat since she has an heir.... oh... like it would be enjoyable to try... oh, just like Hawking's conversation with Mat. Hmmmmm.... Rand admired the Seanchan after his trip through their lands. They brought peace and stability to areas that had long been without either. No, he didn't like the enslavement of the damane... but he questioned his vitrol against the Seanchan. Perhaps we should question ours? We admire the Romans... aren't the Seanchan the Romans of Randland? They absorb other countries but allow them to keep their cultures. They have slaves who can rise to power. Only their treatment of Damane is different... and are the Aes Sedai without "sin"??... kidnapping rulers... beating Rand... nonconsentual spiritual circumcision of male channelers for years?? Two wrongs don't make a right... I'm just saying I don't like the White Tower any more or less than the Seanchan. I didn't want Nynaeve to join...just pass the test and then say, "no, thanks!". ;o) Even in Avi's future viewing the Seanchan became part of the peace treaty... and though the Seanchan had contingency plans, Avi's kids knew they intended to try to keep the treaty. Just because the evil's of Avi's children may be changed for good doesn't mean the original Seanchan intentions may be changed for bad. Tuon and Mat will be busy retaking the original Seanchan continent. Mat would be bored silly post Last Battle in Randland. He's still a battle master.... that was given him in Finnland...it's not part of his ta'veren nature... and in his own POVs he was so grateful to be gone from the Two Rivers. He and Egwene were the two who wanted to be away from that small town!! Rand, Perrin, and Nynaeve were more proud of their homeland. Beslan and others will be taking care of Randland Seanchan. They will keep the peace. I have hope that eventually the evils of Damane slavery will be abolished... but in our world we've had slavery since well before the Romans, and we still haven't eradicated it in some form or another from the face of the earth. Even though all the civilized nations are against it. Just sayin' I think it's at lease a couple thousand years away for the Seanchan, however unfortunate. Tuon has been trained to be the Empress in almost as extensive a fashion as the Damane have been trained to be obedient. Not sure we can hold it against her completely... and she does love Mat... she tells Min that she has given her permission to do what her heart wants. She's been trained to put the Empire first, however.
  13. So, so many. But a few in no random order: The whole parley in Merrilor. Especially Moiraine's part, Nyn and Moiraine's inevitable understanding, and Perrin solving the Aiel puzzle. The armies appearing by Lan as he charged to his death. I've read it again and again. Visually the most stunning thing in the book!! Androl's use of the gateway to bend his captor's weaves back against them in the Black Tower. Nynaeve healing Talmanes with practically a firehose of the One Power... makes the use of the Power by the other girls seem like a faucet!! LOL And her complimenting Moiraine after!! ;o) Mat wearing pink on his hat caused me a tear. Love that reluctant hero. Perrin and Masuri's make up scene. And Masuri's shock when he shifted away. Annoura burning herself out in sacrifice to repair her friendship with Berelain. Leilwin's determination to make up for losing the male a'dam... and her loyalty to Egwene once she decided how to fix it. Cried when Egwene made her warder. Gaul telling Perrin that he knows Perrin is headed for the WoD and "I'm feeling sleepy"... When Logain first appeared to Elayne and said "The Black Tower stands with the Lion of Andor" ...I was so disappointed when a few pages later I realized he actually didn't already have it all back together... Cads figuring out the gift thing with Rand... and teasing whether Rand had a gift for her... and Rand admitting that "They are for people I like..." LOVED Cads figuring out who was the "new" man in black. Lan sheathing the sword!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Rand throwing it in the DO's face as Lan stands with Demandred's severed head!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Min as Tuon's Truthspeaker/Doomseer!!!!!!!!!! Crack. Me. Up!!! Egwene's going out with a bang. Love/Hate that girl.... (did like the theory posted in the forums that she was a control freak because of being leashed... being boxed in like Rand... can't remember whose it was...) Olver/Faile/Noal/Vannin.... LOVED that whole frenetic, broken up, riveting scene!! Death and return of my girl, Brigitte. Especially Brigitte finally gaining the upper hand and withholding Olver and the Horn from Elayne!! Yeah!! Fist Pump!!!!!! Mat and Tuon in garden. Mat and Tuon and Rand in garden.... and "I saved Moiraine... chew on that!" Sorry to the haters... but LOVED it! Rand walking across the FoM with the unfurling pavilion assembing itself.... would love to see that on film. What a great ride... so bittersweet to have it finished... so glad that like Tolkien's Appendices we'll have Jordan's Encyclopedia, cause it's just too hard to let go.
  14. Balwer and Cha Faile I love Perrin's group... they always seemed the most cohesive despite being the most hodge podge of the 6 gangs... (Rand, Mat, Perrin, WT, BT, Seanchan). Also, on Hopper's Soul... since he wasn't with the Lupine Heros of the Horn, I assumed that was confirmation that his soul was indeed lost when he died in the WoD. Thoughts?
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