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  1. Lavaliar

    I'm Back!

    Well, it's been a few months. I've been busy but I'm back to full-on WOT-Mania! At the moment I am: 1. Reading Book 4 2. Listening to Book 2 3. Re-reading the EOTW comic Has anyone heard the news about Shannara? Elfstones of Shannara is being developed as a television series ala Game of Thrones. This should really put a fire under whoever has the rights to WOT, I think. I'm very jealous that GOT fans have their own magazine. I want my WOT magazine! In other news: My epic fantasy novel Carrot Field recently had its first review: http://www.sffworld.com/2013/12/carrot-field-vincent-asaro/ Over the 9th/10th it was offered as a free download & it had 1,111 downloads!!! For some background on the book check out my Blog: http://vincentasaro.wordpress.com/ For the next 5 days Carrot Field will be available at half price! Carrot Field is a 150,000 word fantasy epic 20 years in the making. I think a lot of WOT fans would enjoy it :) http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00D5Z4N28/ref=s9_simh_gw_p351_d0_i1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-3&pf_rd_r=0A2D8XCZM5P6RNZ71GYM&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=470938811&pf_rd_i=507846 That's all for now. Back to The Shadow Rising . . .
  2. You can only paint a replica if it is not the same dimensions as the original. If it is the same dimensions, it is illegal.
  3. Well, I'm in Book 4 now and I've hit the first gen-u-ine romantic scene! Between Elayne and Rand. Over the years, before I even started reading the series, I've been reading different views and responses to WOT. While RJ was still alive, the biggest complaints had to do with the slowing down of the narrative and the lack of any end in sight. Since BS took over, criticisms have shifted. In a way, as more fresh voices have read the series, criticism has become more wide ranging and also more specific. Inevitably, with any huge work of art, after the author dies critics start looking for weaknesses. Some of these criticisms strike me as absurd, accusations of racism or "sexism" etc. But one line of criticism I've seen from many female readers in recent years is that WOT is padded with "soppy" romances and "simpering" women. I can't speak for the series as a whole but I wonder if there's a generation gap happening here. After all, a female reader now in her 20's has grown up with mostly "ass kicking" action heroines. Personally, I think RJ was drawing from several traditions that he thought complimented his world and characters. The first would be medieval "romances" that enshrined the values of "courtly love". While WOT isn't overtly medieval in tone, RJ does use elements of medieval literature in his text. Courtly love is all about delayed gratification, there's a lot of long, complex flirtation and pernicious testing on the part of the woman, sometimes even humiliation. That ain't my cuppa, but it certainly did create some lovely stories if you can look at them in context. I think another influence is 19th Century historical romance, namely Sir Walter Scott. Lan and Nynaeve's love story is reminiscent of Ivanhoe, specifically, and Scott in general. Also from the 19th Century, I think RJ was drawing from the Pre Raphealites, both the poetry and the paintings. These were Victorian idealizations of medieval literature and history, misty romantic tales of knights and maidens. One can also see the influence of Tennyson's Idylls of the King in WOT. I also see the influence of swashbuckling Hollywood movies from the 1930's and 1940's, like The Adventures of Robin Hood, Captain Blood and The Scarlet Pimpernel. Again, these were deeply romanticized adventure yarns with, yep, brave heroes and swooning ladies. A few observations: 1. Consider the ages and backgrounds of the main characters. They are all quite young, inexperienced in relationships and come from various sheltered backgrounds, either geographically, culturally or socially. I believe that WOT covers about 2.5 years (?) -- correct me if I'm wrong -- so the main characters are barely into adulthood by the time the saga ends. I don't think their behavior is out of line with their age and experience level. Certainly not for a romantic epic. 2. Consider the author. He was clearly a romantic who believed in good and evil (he even chose fantasy as his genre so he could write about that) and who wore his heart on his sleeve. These characters express the imagination of their creator (and "old testament god" at that). I also see the influence of Southern mores and customs, were also very courtly. Maybe I'll grow weary of these quaint, blushing, romantic scenes. At the moment, I find it a refreshing change from the harsh, explicit content of most post-modern fantasy. But I grew up loving those old movies and medieval tales of chivalry; maybe I've been preconditioned . . .
  4. I think that most genre readers have been sophisticated enough, for a long time, to understand that there is no such thing as "absolute good" and "absolute evil" in war. I think it's kind of redundant to have so many stories pointing out something so incredibly self apparent. Especially as a supposed "corrective" to Lord of the Rings or other fantasies; it shows that many people haven't read LotR's very carefully. I am actually dismayed by the very vocal sectors of Fandom that want to see Star Wars through the eyes of Imperial Officers etc. It seems we can't stomach the idea of goodness anymore. Believe it or not, history is filled with good people who did good things. That doesn't mean that fantasy has to be two-dimensional. But in a work as vast and complex as WOT I don't think it's a sin to have elements that are there to serve a specific purpose. Trollocs are the classic monsters of mythology. Heroes need monsters. In a way, we're having our monsters taken away from us, and for no good reason. What's ironic is that heroes in a lot of modern fantasy are far worse than orcs or trollocs, capable of sexual assault and outright murder, and millions of readers find that acceptable; but they're still whinging about orcs. Somewhere on the road to having compassion for one's enemy we've ended up in a place where the (real) monsters are the heroes! Maybe our priorities are getting a little muddled?
  5. That's crazy! I guess copyright law isn't universal. I'm glad the Tolkien Estate has a tight grip on all of this. Can you imagine of Amazon opened Middle Earth to their inane fan-fic program?
  6. So far, Book 4: Moiraine Aviendah Min Padan Fain Lan Loial Rand/Mat I'm kind of enjoying the Aes Sedai parts more than the "hero's journey" parts, at this point.
  7. Wow, that's about as bad as it gets. You can download a translation (official) online and it's just really bad PC fanfic that completely, purposely misunderstands Tolkien. Blech!
  8. It has taken me a while to get used to Michael Kramer's unusual cadence but I'm now hooked. I had EOTW on in the car all day. I'm not an audio book fan, I'd rather read a book at home & listen to music in the car. But now that I'm used to the narrator's voice, it's a real treat. There's so much woven into the text, every time you read or hear it, you uncover new layers. I definitely want to listen to the whole series now but only after I've read each book.
  9. Here is a good resource for keeping track. http://www.encyclopaedia-wot.org/ Very nice thank you!
  10. It's not the only thing I'm reading (!) I'm also reading WOT rather slowly, I also write novels. So yeah, it's a lot of side characters to keep track of. Some of them I remember or half remember when they crop up but not if they were mentioned once in EOTW or TGH. I imagine it only gets more dense as it goes on . . .
  11. Well, I'm back on track after a long detour! I finished TDR months ago but a lot of things got in the way since then. Now that things have calmed down some, I can immerse myself again. Query: Is TSR the only WOT book not to have a Prologue? Just a general question: I'm starting to feel the "burn" with all of the characters running around, has anyone kept notes while reading the series? Did it help? I'm thinking of starting a journal of notes to go along with my reading just to keep things straight!
  12. I ain't never selling this book
  13. It was the craziest blind luck ever. Right now they're fetching $550.00-750.00 but I've seen these go for much more. Just seeing his own handwriting inside the book really gets me jazzed. I never got to meet the man.
  14. So I went to the library yesterday and found this on the $1.00 book shelf: Eye of the World Hardcover w. dust jacket 1st Printing 1st Edition Autographed Dated (1995, South Carolina) Condition: Mint I'm still pinching myself. I can't believe my luck! * * * * I'm about to start Book 4. The past few months were pretty intense & I got sidetracked.
  15. I'm on a similar journey, I just finished book three!
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