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James al'Dylan

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About James al'Dylan

  • Birthday April 15
  1. He went to Wells Cathedral School by all accounts; and given his age and that it’s a small school, there’s a chance I’d have played him at rugby, so I’m on board. (Reader, we generally beat Wells when we played them)
  2. I guess, reluctantly, I’m going to come back to this. Given that it’s an adaptation, and the way gender identity is currently being represented in film/TV; all I’m saying in previous posts is that Min’s character could be portrayed differently to the ‘Tom boy’ she’s shown as in the earlier books. I’ll be super happy, just so long as Min is there and being baddass. I was a bit annoyed that at the end she kinda got given as a slave/servant of the Empress (wtf!). It didn’t feel like a great ending for her.
  3. If she’s playing his wife, and ends up dying, it would make his single minded pursuit of rescuing Faile later in the series more believable and powerful. It would also make a 19/20 y/o mans attempts to resist a hot exotic girls interest in him in TDR more believable frankly.
  4. “We are always more afraid than we wish to be, but we can always be braver than we expect.” In LoC when Egwene is leaving the Wise Ones and going to Salidar. Brings a tear to my eye. That’s the one scene I want in. But for EotW/tGH I just want some ‘play for your supper action!
  5. Well I wish I hadn’t mentioned it now. I do think, however, that if you are wishing for a book adaptation where all characters are exactly as you saw them in the book then you’re going to be disappointed. The art of telling the story on TV, and for an audience in 2019, will entail changes to story arcs, characters, and even some end points possibly. In order for the series to be commissioned beyond one series they will need to reach a broad audience.
  6. I wouldn’t be surprised if they simply adopted a very gender ambiguous role for Min; even more so than in the books, and possibly to the point where they’re fully gender fluid. It would allow them to go lots of different ways with their and Rand’s relationship, possibly even changing significantly throughout the series. And let’s face it, Min does struggle to a certain degree through the books with identity. I can see Rand meeting someone in Baerlon who is a ‘boy’ or young man; then when we see them again (perhaps in TgH) they are identifying as a woman. I don’t think it’s being cynical to think the producers wouldn’t be keen to add more diversity.
  7. I think Perrin’s wolfiness started about the time of his ta’vereniness, so the wolves beginning to be bolder in their raids could well be a sign of this, or a sign of the weakening of the seals and the coming of another age. I’ve wondered whether each age has different characteristics. Maybe in the first age, these Talents were more common and their reappearance is a sign of the turning of the Wheel reaching a new age? I’m not sure Rand thinks Perrin’s eyesight was ‘weak’, just not as good as his, which being an outdoorsy shepherd is probably going to be better than a blacksmith. Also, while I think Perrin’s abilities do come on quickly, there’s still a gradual nature to it, and bear in mind that few others with this ability would actually sit around a campfire with wolves, so that must help bring it on more strongly. When I read it the first time I really enjoyed the Perrin/Egwene chapters. They helped bring me back into the story after the shock of the group's separation.
  8. I've often wondered what would have happened if the party hadn't been separated. Such a small wisp of Mashadar and yet it propels the story in a completely new direction. Such is the way of the pattern I guess! I'm of the mind that it was a good thing that they never went to Tar Valon given the events later in the series and its infestation with Black Ajah, but I think you might be reading a bit too much into Moiraine's comment about the Amyrlin. I read that as just a figure of speech to emphasise that she expects not everyone will always see things her way, 'even the Amyrlin'. Still, perhaps she did anticipate that their time apart could have made a gulf in how they saw things.
  9. When I first started reading the series I think Perrin and Egwene were my favourites. I know she’s not everyone’s cup of tea but Egwene’s probably the character that I think has the most inspiring moments – for me anyway. I also like Elayne and Nynaeve when they’re together, but otherwise I find them individually infuriating. By the end of the series, like a lot of people I really enjoyed Mat’s POV’s and after initially disliking him (up until tDR) he finished very strongly. They didn’t have much in the way of POV sections but Min and Moiraine were also two of my favourites, and right from her first appearance I thought Tuon was awesome. I like all the Asha’man for the forces of light: Logain, Flinn, Narishma, Neald & Grady and Androl. I know Androl was very much a BS addition but I thought he was great. I really wanted to get into the Forsaken characters more, but the male ones are so stupid and one dimensional – essentially different variations on the same ‘jealous of Lews Therin’ guy. Aginor and Asmodean were missed opportunities. My favourite by a long way is Graendal. Finally, I never liked Lan and still don’t. Except in tGH he’s a cardboard cut-out character. But my wild-card favourite is Verin. She’s the ultimate Aes Sedai - finding a way even around the Dark One’s oath!
  10. It reads like Robert Newton's portrayal of Long John Silver in Treasure Island (1950). Newton was from Dorset and gave his character an exaggerated West Country accent. So successful was his characterisation that he is now the 'patron saint' of International Talk Like a Pirate Day (19 September)! Now I should say that I also hail from the West Country, in Somerset, so know more than a little about the accents around here! To my ear there are many variations and to be honest very few now speak with a pronounced accent at all. Very broadly the accents of the rural/farming counties of Somerset, Dorset, Devon and to a lesser extent Cornwall are softer. Bristol and the Bristolian accent is quite broad and a bit stronger, but you can hear pockets of similarity in parts of coastal Cornwall too. To me, Bayle Domon sounds like he's from Bristol, though I don't recall him calling anyone "me babber". This said, however, I thought I remember reading somewhere that RJ said that the Illian accent was Dutch?! I might have that wrong, but either way, it's a West Country accent and fortune prick me if that's not the truth of it.
  11. I meant to say that with regards to Rand drinking from the goblet, whatever the exact nature of the dream, unless you're trapped within someone else's, the strength of your will is important in the ability of the other to control you and your surroundings. Perhaps Rand's refusal to drink made him less 'believing' of the dream and therefore strengthened his will…or the other way around!
  12. Personally I think all the dream sequences in tEotW are dreamshards as I don’t think it would be possible to pull the three Two Rivers boys into Tel’aran’rhiod at will. I’d love to know if dreamshards were in RJ’s notes, because I don’t think they appear until ToM at the earliest (I might be wrong)? Re-reading these sequences I’ve wondered if originally RJ had a slightly different idea of the World of Dreams when he started out. Perhaps not different per se, but maybe less developed. After all, he did originally plan a shorter series. Sure he could have cut out a few folding arms across bosoms and describing spots of colour appearing on cheeks, but he clearly expanded quite a few story arcs and plot details. It makes me wonder whether BS sort of incorporated dreamshards so that these early exchanges between Ishamael and Rand made sense. There might be some stuff out there to explain this, but it kind of seems out of kilter with what we later learn about dreaming and the rules regarding it. Strangely, it wasn’t until tDR that I realised Ishamael was Ba’alzamon. I knew he wasn’t the DO, at lease not in a physical sense, but I completely forgot the prologue of tEotW – in truth I don’t think I really paid much attention to it first time round. I suppose I’d just opened the book and didn’t know whether I would end up reading it! Odd what we miss, but if anything it probably made me enjoy the first books more. I agree that Min’s viewings are one of the most interesting in the story, but again I wonder if maybe originally something else was intended. Some of the stuff (Lan’s and Thom’s) seem retrospective. And the white hot iron is similar to the red hot iron and an axe which she sees with Elayne in tGH (I still don’t know what that means, unless I’m being stupid). I do think that the bloody hand is the one he loses to Semirhage though; and I love the three women around a funeral pyre, which we have to wait until the very end to learn the truth of. Also, I agree that Nynaeve is one of the most important characters. After Rand she probably does more than any other single person. Of course all have their place in the pattern but she ends up sorting out a lot of world’s problems!!
  13. Firstly, thank you for writing this theory blog. It must take you some time to do each post, but I’d like you to know that from me at least it’s definitely appreciated. When I finished AMOL I felt as if I might not read the series again. Part of the enjoyment was not knowing how the story would end, so I didn’t know if I could pick up the books again and go through that journey another time. Your obvious passion for the story and characters really comes through and it made me pick up EOTW once more and I’m currently on what I’m calling my 4.5 read through (I count the skim read I did between GS and TOM as only half!) – although in practice I’ve read some of my favourite scenes many times. Anyway, sorry for the rather gushing praise; it’s my way of saying ‘please keep up the good work’! Now, onto some thoughts I had on your post. I think the male characters reaction to the One Power is perhaps a result of saidin’s taint and it’s association in the male brain. By this I don’t mean that they are tainted by it, rather the horror and fear that tainted saidin creates in men’s psyche within the series. Imagine growing up knowing that there was a chance, no matter how remote, that because of your gender you could go mad and destroy everything and everyone you loved, even the world itself. I think you might fear it more than if it was something that could only happen to other people. That’s my thought. On Moiriane’s ruthlessness and potentially going against the Pattern by killing Rand if necessary, that isn’t how I read it. I see this as her clear-as-crystal mission to fight the Dark One. She will do anything to prevent him from obtaining the tool to destroy the Pattern. Remember, she can’t lie, so she must believe it. Maybe even without the Dragon there’s still hope – hope is a major theme in the series – but if the Dark One has him then he wins. Absolutely. It’s the first reference that hints at the sheer significance of their struggle. Personally I think it’s an exhilarating exchange between two of the books strongest wills. Those are my observations. Thanks again.
  14. I’ve just finished it. A final re-read through the series and other commitments have meant I’m a little late to the party, but my first thoughts are that while there’s lots to enjoy, there’s a fair amount of disappointment too. First though, a few points in ‘defence’ and recognition of RJ and BS. Principle amongst these is that I feel I may have rather rushed through it. As the Eelfinn might say, I didn’t ‘savour’ it. I’m quite a slow reader normally, but blasted through the book in what were essentially four very long sittings (a record for me). By the time I finished, it was early in the morning and I was pretty tired. That was a mistake. Next up, I think there was always a risk that my level of expectation was too high, particularly since I’ve enjoyed the last three books so much after a bit of a lull during WH and CoT. Finally, the story itself; how do you end it? There’s a lot to cram in there, which is really my main problem with the book. The overwhelming feeling I have is of something of a rushed ending. Reading it I kept thinking ‘he’s running out of pages’. Lo and behold at the end there’s very little on the Great Hunt, Padan Fain pops up and is immediately killed cheaply, Siuan runs into a tent and dies and there’s no real ending. After 300 pages of constant battle and death, there’s no winding down. For me it was simply too much finished too abruptly. Right up to The Last Battle chapter I was enthralled, but there was too little light relief within action that was too repetitive. Anyway, as I’ve said, I loved the first 2/3rds. Androl and Pevara’s part in it was particularly good. As a couple, they’re one of the only ones in the series that make believable sense to me (Gareth and Siuan, Rand and Min being the other ones). The Sharans and Demandred was excellent, though this could have done with more backfilling of the story after the event. And, though it pains me to say it, as she was one of my favourite characters, Egwene’s death was amazing and a beautiful part of the final section. I also think it was right that there are unanswered questions and while I personally think Rand should have died, I’m kind of glad he didn’t – though I’m pleased that I guessed how he was going to seal the DO and get out alive! For such a large set piece battle, I think BS managed to convey the scale (both big and small) of the fight. I never felt like I didn’t know what was going on where, which is an enormous credit to him. Olver blowing the horn was a master-stroke, and while I had an inkling that Mat probably wasn’t linked to it anymore, it felt a perfect way for that story arc to play out (yay for Noel too!). There were lots of other good bits too. Basically, I need to re-read it, but my gut reaction is that I think it needed another book! There I’ve said it. Now where did I leave that rope…
  15. I much prefer the book covers here in the UK, which are usually much plainer. It seems a bit odd to have a pictorial representation of characters and events on a book cover in my view; plus I don't like it to look like I'm reading teen fiction when I'm on the train (even when I was a teenager I didn't want this!). This one from Orbit is perfect in my view.
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