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  1. This is my first thread. So be gentle What stuck out me about Randland almost from the beginning of TEOTW was the attention given to foodstuff and beverages of the setting , which quickly takes on a European cast before the discovery of the new world. There is no mention of tomatoes, potatoes, corn (maize), chocolate, peanuts, turkeys or anything else from the New World in the daily diet. The exception is tobacco which is I think is a nod to JRR Tolkien and the Shire. Wheat, barley, and oats are the staples of the diet. The Seanchan have coffee, but they are not native to the Westlands. Also not used in the Westlands are Old World foods and crops not associated with Europeans pre- 1500 like cotton (Aeil only), sugar, black pepper, and pasta. Yes I am aware that the very rich, in Europe, had access to most of the above by 1500. There is tea, but I think that the tea was made from seeping local leaves and herbs and is not the tea we know today that comes from places like Sri Lanka (Ceylon). There is a new fantasy food stuff introduced called ice peppers. Ice Peppers are Randland's spicy pepper. Honey is the universal sweetener and is mentioned frequently in nearly every book. Although on occasions apples are used to make something sweet/or used as a desert. Since cheese is mentioned frequently I assume dairy is a major part of the Westland's diet just like in Europe. It is chancy drinking water (except from places like the Winespring) so everybody drinks tea or beer or punch or some similar beverage. So here are my questions: 1) Do these basic facts hold true throughout the Westlands? (Leaving out the Seanchan and Aeil) I think they do. Can anybody remember a national cuisine that contradicts the above? 2) Can anybody point to a named spice used in the Westlands besides Ice Peppers? 3) B Sanderson had in at least one scene the ladies putting sugar into their tea instead of honey. Does everybody agree with me that this was a mistake and should have been changed to honey? 4) Cheese is mentioned a lot. Is there any mention of cream, butter, yogurt or other dairy? I remember Matt complaining about milking his Da’s cows so they probably drink milk. 5) I could have sworn in a latter book RJ briefly mentions a potato as an ingredient in some stew. I think this was a rare slip on RJ's part. What do other people think? 6) Sanderson came down on the side that peaches were definitely poisonous in Randland rather than rumored to be poisonous or some wild varieties being poisonous. Was this supported in the text or is this Sanderson's interpretation of the state of the Randland peaches?
  2. For people following this less closely than you these are not well known facts. I wager you could not have made your comment after TGS came out, which being the first novel after RJ's death, is when people probably paid the most attention. I enjoyed the Sanderson novels, but he is an author whose skillset compliments rather than builds upon RJs strenghths. By this I mean Imagine having RJ and an author like Sanderson working together as a team starting around book 7. Sanderson adds pacing, plot twists, attention to deadlines and attention to fans to Jordan's deep characterizations, world building, vision and prose. I felt Sanderson was at his strongest when he was combined or riffing directly off Robert Jordan. Which is why I thought TGS was a particularly strong novel for the most part. I enjoyed AMOL, but I feel RJ would have made very different choices.
  3. That is hilarous! A good thing you did not google the horse Bela or you would have gotten some very interesting spoilers!
  4. Albanus

    Ajah test

    Oopps I closed the window. I'm a Gray! Apperently a rare type for these boards. I thought I would get White with Brown and Blue being the runner ups However I got Grey 8 White 7 Blue 4 and Brown only 2! I think the others were Green 2 Red 1 Yellow 0 I actually didn't like any of the gray Aes Sedai in the book, (they seemed to fussy and rigid among other things) so I am surprised.
  5. It is hard to judge because the main characters either change or are presented differently in the early, middle, and latter parts of the series. Take Nyneve. In the original three books and the and the later part of the series she is one of the best characters in the series. In between however Nyneve is dialed up to 11 for several reasons including comic relief. As a result, she is absolutely insufferable. It seems scarcely a negative review, on Amazon, doesn't mentioned her incessant braid-pulling, sniffing and tantrums. But I suppose Faille would be my least favorite, although I never warmed to Avienda (I know, a minority view). Faille was a character that was actaully improved by Brandon S. draining some of the personality out of her.
  6. My favorite were the original trilogy. Essentially, for me, the first ten books they go in linear order from best in the series to the worst in the series with the exception that Winter's Heart ending (book 9) makes it marginally better then book 8. The Next 4 plus the prequel New Spring are roughly in the middle of the series, with Brandon doing an excellent job given the situation. Note: I suspect my views are a minority view as I like plot centric or world building novels. I think the best relationtionship heavy lifting is done in the early mid novels which I suspect are the boards favorites.
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