Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

The Wheel of Time #1

The Eye of the World

Rate this book
The Wheel of Time turns and Ages come and pass, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth returns again. What was, what will be, and what is, may yet fall under the Shadow.

Moiraine Damodred arrives in Emond’s Field on a quest to find the one prophesized to stand against The Dark One, a malicious entity sowing the seeds of chaos and destruction. When a vicious band of half-men, half beasts invade the village seeking their master’s enemy, Moiraine persuades Rand al’Thor and his friends to leave their home and enter a larger unimaginable world filled with dangers waiting in the shadows and in the light.

800 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published January 15, 1990

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Robert Jordan

579 books14.6k followers
Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

Robert Jordan was the pen name of James Oliver Rigney, Jr., under which he was best known as the author of the bestselling The Wheel of Time fantasy series. He also wrote under the names Reagan O'Neal and Jackson O'Reilly.

Jordan was born in Charleston, South Carolina. He served two tours in Vietnam (from 1968 to 1970) with the United States Army as a helicopter gunner. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross with bronze oak leaf cluster, the Bronze Star with "V" and bronze oak leaf cluster, and two Vietnamese Gallantry Crosses with palm. After returning from Vietnam he attended The Citadel where he received an undergraduate degree in physics. After graduating he was employed by the United States Navy as a nuclear engineer. He began writing in 1977. He was a history buff and enjoyed hunting, fishing, sailing, poker, chess, pool, and pipe collecting.

He described himself as a "High Church" Episcopalian and received communion more than once a week. He lived with his wife Harriet McDougal, who works as a book editor (currently with Tor Books; she was also Jordan's editor) in a house built in 1797.

Responding to queries on the similarity of some of the concepts in his Wheel of Time books with Freemasonry concepts, Jordan admitted that he was a Freemason. However, "like his father and grandfather," he preferred not to advertise, possibly because of the negative propaganda against Freemasonry. In his own words, "no man in this country should feel in danger because of his beliefs."

On March 23, 2006, Jordan disclosed in a statement that he had been diagnosed with cardiac amyloidosis, and that with treatment, his median life expectancy was four years, though he said he intended to beat the statistics. He later posted on his Dragonmount blog to encourage his fans not to worry about him and that he intended to have a long and fully creative life.

He began chemotherapy treatment at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, in early April 2006. Jordan was enrolled in a study using the drug Revlimid just approved for multiple myeloma but not yet tested on primary amyloidosis.

Jordan died at approximately 2:45 p.m. EDT on September 16, 2007, and a funeral service was held for him on Wednesday, September 19, 2007. Jordan was cremated and his ashes buried in the churchyard of St. James Church in Goose Creek, outside Charleston.

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
233,551 (46%)
4 stars
166,825 (33%)
3 stars
70,456 (14%)
2 stars
19,093 (3%)
1 star
10,185 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 21,053 reviews
Profile Image for J.G. Keely.
546 reviews9,760 followers
August 8, 2016
The first series that showed it was possible to do an uninspired rewrite of Tolkien and make a mint was Shannara. After that the doors were flung wide, and the next to profit off the scheme was was Robert Jordan. Of course, I'm not suggesting it's bad to take inspiration from older authors--all authors do this, as Virgil did from Homer, and Milton from Virgil, and Byron from Milton. Tolkien himself drew on the Norse Eddas, Welsh myths, English fairy tales, and Blake's myth-making.

But when a skilled author takes inspiration, they expand and change what came before, combining many influences to produce their own unique voice and vision. Jordan didn't have the knowledge of language, history, or culture to truly copy Tolkien's style, nor was he able to add a unique spin.

The Eye of The World is a more accessible version of Tolkien, but Tolkien is already a simplified version of the Norse Sagas, meaning that Jordan felt a need to dumb-down the accessible, which doesn't leave his book with much personality.

Jordan also takes influence from the Sword & Sorcery tradition, particularly R.E. Howard (Jordan even wrote and published some of his own Conan stories). However, unlike other authors of rollicking adventure Fantasy, like Leiber or Charles Saunders, Jordan kept Tolkien's plodding length. It is difficult to comprehend how an author could take such a simple, familiar story and stretch it out over so many pages.

The hero is an orphan who looks different, he gets his father's magic sword, he goes on a quest with an old, wily mentor, gets attacked by evil (dark-skinned) mongoloids from the mysterious East, meets the princess by accident, becomes embroiled in an ancient prophecy, discovers a magic 'force' which controls fate (and the plot), &c., &c.

Stop me if you've heard this one before. Like a lot of modern fantasy, the plot and characters are nothing new. If you've seen Star Wars, then you know it by heart. Every fantasy fan has read this same story again and again from countless authors--some, apparently on purpose. Of course, when this old story is told well, with slick pacing and vivid characters, we can forgive the cliches, or even enjoy them freshly, recognizing their universal appeal. But when an author is simply trotting out an old, tired story and doing nothing to make it shine anew, then the only appeal it can lay claim to is bland nostalgia.

There's no reason for this sort of repetition: a new book should be more than just fanfic of an older, financially successful book. There are countless different influences out there, long before Tolkien or Howard ever touched pen to paper (many of which can be found in the link at the end of this review), so it's disappointing to see authors continually rehashing the same tedious cliches completely unchanged half a century later.

Jordan's long-winded style can't even boast the wealth of meticulous details with which Tolkien filled his pages (often to the detriment of his story). It's clear that Jordan's trying to build a one of those massively detailed worlds so prevalent in pop fantasy, but it's not an interesting, original world--it's just another generic, pseudo-Medieval Europe without any of the genuinely interesting bits that made that time period unique. It's just modern characters with modern psychology swinging around magic swords in a Disneyland version of history.

It might not be so bad if the lengthy asides were actually interesting, in and of themselves. If each little piece was amusing in its own right, we might forgive. If they gave us some odd bit of defamiliarization that caused us to look at our own, modern world in a new way, that would be something. Instead, we get dry, lengthy explanations of extraneous facts that we had no reason to be curious about in the first place.

Some readers have pointed out that these facts show up in later books of the series, which is probably true, but then, what are they doing in this book? If Mary doesn't appear until book three, it is not useful or interesting to stop in the middle of book one and tell us she has blonde hair. Facts should not be evenly distributed throughout a series, they should be placed in close proximity to scenes that relate to them. That way they make sense to the reader and we have a reason to care about them. That's the difference between foreshadowing and a word search puzzle.

If an author has to stop the story every few paragraphs to explain what's going on, then his writing is simply not working. The world should be revealed to us through characters, through their interactions, through small details of verisimilitude that are lovely or interesting on their own, and through scenes designed specifically to illustrate a point without losing focus and falling into lengthy digressions.

But Jordan's characters are dull and shallow, his dialogue bland, and his plot (though it possesses many parts) lacks twists or turns. We are given an unending parade of new characters and lengthy asides, which masterfully suck all the drive, purpose, and life from an otherwise simplistic story. At half this length, the book would have been merely another two-star fantasy rehash. At a third the length, it might have started to show some pep--but Jordan had to stretch out his all-to-familiar story to doorstop proportions.

In Tolkien, the first hundred pages takes place in quaint Hobbiton. This prelude prepares us for the rest of the book, allowing us to understand the strange world and characters and setting a mood. When the action takes us away, we find we have formed a certain attachment to the bucolic charm of Hobbiton (sickly-sweet as it may be). Finally, when we do depart, the world we meet is much grander in comparison. In Eye of the World, you spend the first hundred and fifty pages in a drab farming community, so that when the characters finally leave, it will seem like something is happening. This is only an illusion.

Some of Jordan's fans have pointed to the 'Wheel of Time' aspect as his unique contribution to the genre--mixing Eastern philosophy and the idea of eternal recurrence in with his mock-feudal world, but it's the same thing that E.R. Eddison was doing in the 1920s, and which Michael Moorcock has been exploring and expanding on since the sixties. As such, I don't see it as some new twist that Jordan has added to fantasy, but as another bland rehash of an interesting idea some other author had decades before.

Also, like most fantasy authors, Jordan seems to have a problem writing female characters. They are either whiny and snotty, or emasculating ice queens. They all speak in the exact same voice--and the joke in the writing community is that anyone who has met his wife know exactly where every one of his female characters comes from. I couldn't count on both hands the fantasy authors who seem to think 'strong woman' means 'insufferable, unapologetic shrew'. Then again, it isn't as if his male characters aren't any more interesting or fleshed-out, even if they do get a more flattering depiction.

I've also been led to understand that later on in the series, we get a magical band of lipstick lesbians who 'go straight' when they grow up (and meet 'real men', like our heroes), plus a bunch of sex-fetish weirdness about punishment by naked public spanking. But I suppose that if Jordan resembles other genre writers in terms of plot, length, setting, and character, he might as well go all the way and throw in some of his own unprocessed sexual hangups.

And as the series goes on, the many problems with pacing, plotting, and unfocused asides only grow worse. If Jordan can't keep everything straight in his opening book, how will he possibly deal when the story starts branching out (as stories inevitably do)? It is hardly surprising that such a tenuous grasp will inevitably slip away--as it has for so many other authors in pop fantasy, from Martin to Goodkind, who start off intending to write a trilogy and end up with ten books, each of which takes five years to write, and none of which even manage to finish the plot started in book I.

So, take the plot of Star Wars, add the long-windedness of Tolkien, the piecemeal structure of Howard, the cosmology of Moorcock, add in a pinch of awkward sexual hangups, and you have yet another crap pop fantasy, ready to sell a million copies to folks who want nothing more than to read the same story over and over as written by a succession of chubby, bearded, awkward dudes. I'm sure a violent, breast-baring miniseries is already in preproduction.


UPDATE: one might point to the endless repetition in modern literature as a sure sign that there is no God, no grand plan, and no purpose to the universe. A benevolent power would surely spare us the pain of such unending mediocrity.

However, if there were some deity, and he had a sense of humor, then he would allow the uncreative authors to publish, to gain fame, win awards, and rake in the cash, until their series piled self-indulgently to the length of a minor encyclopedia. Then our clownish deity would let the author announce that he is finally approaching The End (for real this time!), only to perish on the cusp. Since this is precisely what happened to Jordan, I will have to keep an eye out for other signs of this humorous demiurge, possibly in the form of leper-curing banana peels and hagiographic fright wigs.

My Fantasy Book Suggestions
Profile Image for Joel.
554 reviews1,621 followers
May 10, 2012
Paternity leave reading for 3 a.m. crying jags. (Mine and hers.)

---

There, Brian. I read it. Are you happy?

My friend Brian has been telling me to read The Wheel of Time for years. It always went like this:

Brian: You should read The Wheel of Time. It's really good.
Me: I've heard that it gets really, really bad.
B: The first seven books are really outstanding.
M: Yeah, I'm not going to read seven books without an ending.
B: The first one is good but the second one is better.
M: Mmm. I don't know.
B: The first one stands alone really well! [Retrospective commentary: NO IT DOESN'T]
M: OK, lemee borrow it.

[Several months pass]

M: Here is your book back.
B: Oh, you read it?
M: No.

I really thought I was never, ever going to start this series. Everything I read about it screamed at me to run away. Tolkien pastiche. Incredibly long. Characters with stupid names. Lots of "world-building." The main villain is called "The Dark One." WTF, trollocs?

I have nothing against multi-volume, word-bloated epic fantasy. Not really. (Well, kind of, but I am willing to give it the benefit of the doubt: George R.R. Martin, that one Brandon Sanderson book I liked). But even the people who like The Wheel of Time also seem to apologize for doing so or outright resent it for what it became in the draggy middle. So why do I want to start reading it? If someone told me a show about a mysterious island was really entertaining and interesting for a while there, but then totally peed the ending down its leg, and really, that's a PRETTY BIG DEAL for a mystery show, even one that is purportedly focused on a bunch of unlikeable assholes characters first, would I immediately run home and start watching that show on Netflix streaming? No, because I'm the idiot who watched it all along, assuming I wasn't wasting my time.

I think I am getting off track.

So, I wasn't going to read this. But then I was off work for a few weeks on paternity leave, and my daughter was waking up five times a night, and I was unable to sleep even though, at that point, I didn't really have much to offer that she was interested in, and I had a copy of The Eye of the World that I absorbed for a quarter somewhere, and I've always had a thing for the goofy cover art. So I picked it up at 2 a.m. and read the prologue. And it was pretty much what I expected, what with the stupid names and bad dialogue. But it was also kind of... fun. Of course, I also knew (based on reading a bunch of reviews and blogs about this book series I never planned to read) that the next 150 pages were going to be, in the tradition of Hobbiton (Chapter One: Concerning Ensuring Joel Will Never Read Past the First Section of This Book) horrifically boring. So I almost put it back down.

Then I remembered that my brother had the book in his Audible account, and that my phone lets you listen to books at double speed, meaning I'd get through the 30-hour production in roughly 15. That sounded about right -- the auditory equivalent of skimming (except I actually got really good at listening that quickly; you just kind of have to get in the zone).

And it was exactly as I'd been led to believe: clumsy, repetitious prose (a few times I had to make sure the audio track wasn't repeating as the same dialogue and phrasing was repeated over and over). Meandering pacing and haphazard plotting (nothing happens nothing happens SOMETHING HAPPENS same thing happens five more times nothing happens rushed climax cliffhanger). Bland heroes (though in their defense, they are stupid teenagers). Blatant Tolkien rip-offery (OH MY GOD THE DAGGER IS OBVIOUSLY CURSED YOU IDIOTS). And my favorite, the pauses for self-indulgent infodumps (the "best" one comes in one of the last chapters and throws in so many weird names and covers so much time I have absolutely no idea what happened and why it mattered enough to put the climax on hold). The unsatisfying ending (the last chapters are rushed, drop in a few villains out of the blue only to defeat them a few pages later via a magical object that isn't mentioned until page 650 even though it's the freaking title).

But. Um. I kind of liked it. The world is pretty interesting. I like the way Robert Jordan sketches out the history (even some of the infodumps are fun!). I like his magic system, and the powerful women who are feared and respected for tapping into it. I don't strictly care about the hero's journey at its core, but the weight -- the epicness -- of it all... Once the big, lumbering thing gets moving, it really has momentum.

So here's where the real test comes. Do I read the second book?

No, I do not.

Do I listen to the second book at chipmunk speed?

I really kind of want to. But doing that will only make me want to read book three, and, like poor Rand al'Thor accidentally touching the tainted power of saidin (dammit, Brian, see what you did?), that way lies madness and death.

Maybe if Josh has an extra Audible credit.
Profile Image for Emily (Books with Emily Fox).
531 reviews58.5k followers
August 1, 2021
(4.5) Here I am, a bit to my surprise...

I've been trying to read a lot of "older classic Adult Fantasy" books and it's been hit and miss.
I'm tired of being hit with description of boobs and nipples every time a female character is introduced and this was (sadly) refreshingly not like that. The bar is loooow.

The characters are likeable, the word building is intriguing, the magic system is interesting... It does contain some classic tropes like the farmer boy/chosen one but it didn't bother me and I'm totally planning on continuing!

The weaknesses:
- the "romances" they don't take much space in the book (thankfully!) but they're not very good.
- The ending was pretty vague but it is the first book in a 14 book series.

If you weren't sure about it, I say pick it up! In time for the new tv series!
Profile Image for Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin.
3,460 reviews9,613 followers
September 4, 2021
Holy hell! The movie trailer gave me chills! YES QUEEN!!
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=3Fus4Xb...

10/20/20 - I got the anniversary hardback edition and it’s so beautiful 😫 and the map and the little ribbon!







5 Stars Damn It 😘

MY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List

That was an amazing little journey. I'm going to give it my all to make this a good enough review, but I kinda doubt it because this book is too great for my measly little words :-)

 :

WELCOME TO THE WORLD KNOWN AS THE WHEEL OF TIME

 :

Since I'm not good at explaining certain things, I'm so glad the author put a glossary in the back of the book so I can sound all smart when I tell you what things are!

BOOK GLOSSARY DESCRIPTION OF WHEEL OF TIME

Time is a wheel with seven spokes, each spoke of an age. As the Wheel turns, the Ages come and go, leaving memories that fade in legend, then to myth, and are forgotten by the time that Age comes again. The Pattern of an Age is slightly different each time an Age comes, and each time it is subject to greater change, but each time it is the same Age.

Here is an eeny meeny map that shows the lands our travelers cross in the book.

 :

The story starts out with Rand and his father Tam traveling to the village to sell some things. When they get back home they are attacked by Trollocs and Rand's father is injured very badly. Rand manages to get Tam back to the village to try to find a healer. --->backtrack When Rand went to down he was hanging out with his friends Mat and Perrin and all three of them had been seeing this dark figure on a horse that no one else sees. Also a woman named Moiraine and man named Lan had shown up, oh and a gleeman named Thom. There a whole bunch of stuff going on with this but I can't get into it.

Anyway, back to the attack, when Rand gets back to the village the town healer, Nynaeve says she can't help him and he is just going to die..BUT.. Moiraine helps him and he will live. Moiraine is my favorite character and she's an Aes Sedai, which is (going to refer to glossary again)

Aes Sedai: Wielders of the One Power. Since the Time of Madness, all surviving Aes Sedai are women. Widely distrusted and feared, even hated, they are blamed by many for the Breaking of the World, and are generally thought to meddle in the affairs of nations. At the same time, few rulers will be without an Aes Sedai advisor, even in lands where the existence of such a connection must be kept secret.

Don't let that fool you because in this book Moiraine is bad to the bone with her powers but she's a good person so they can suck it!

She is traveling with Lan and he is a Warder, I love him too :-) Another glossary definition below ↓

Warder: A warrior bonded to an Aes Sedai. The bonding is a thing of the One Power, and by it he gains such gifts as quick healing, the ability to go long periods without food, water, or rest, and the ability to sense the taint of the Dark One at a distance. So long as a Warder lives, the Aes Sedai to whom he is bonded knows he is alive no matter how far away he is, and when he dies she will know the moment and manner of his death.

There is a little more to it than that but you the idea. So, Moiraine and Lan know that the boys are being targeted by the Dark One who is sending the Trollocs and the Myrddraal (who controls the Trollocs) after them to bring them to him. It's a whole big thing that starts this journey.

Moiraine and Lan decide they need to try to get the boys to a safe haven which will take a long time to get to and will be dangerous. So they get Rand, Matt, Perrin to go on this journey and a friend of the boys named Egwene decides she wants to go and so does the Gleeman, Thom.

So they all get the hell out of there at night before the Trollocs show back up!

 :

At some point they all get split up and we get to read about their different adventures, oh and Nynaeve shows up to go with them. My favorite is about Perrin and Egwene because they run into a character named Elyas and he talks to wolves and is friends with wolves, they help each other out and I love it. Although, one part made me want to hunk smash someone, but I digress....

Howling wolves:

This whole world is written so beautifully, I felt like I was there, mostly the parts when they were in the woods or traveling at night, I could picture every little thing the author said down to a T.

I probably would have missed these wonderful books if it wasn't for friends on Goodreads, I'm so glad I get to find more books like this and many others because there are so many different kinds of worlds out there to find, hidden out there for us to grasp and love. The funny thing is, my best friend has had these books forever and never told me! I tore him a new one let me tell you. Not really. LoL

I would like to think anyone that loves fantasy books would love these books. Now that being said, I have only read the first one so I don't know how the next 13 are going to be, I can only hope they are as good as this one.

This book has a whole world of things going on, towns, different kinds of people, adventures, quests people are going on, it's just so much fun and there are some deaths... You could get lost in this book while traveling with each character. I also loved that the author gave all of the horses names and they weren't just random things in the book. Bela being my favorite of course and you will know why when you read the book.

 :

If your waiting to read this book, just go ahead and take the chance and try it out!

Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾
Profile Image for Petrik.
673 reviews42.7k followers
May 2, 2019
3.5/5 stars

Here it is, I’m riding the winds of time! Wheeeeeeeeeee!


Another massive fantasy series to finish, a new epic adventure to undertake. Like many modern fantasy readers, the last three books finished by Brandon Sanderson played a huge motivational drive in my attempt to start and finish The Wheel of Time. I honestly find this series to be even more intimidating than Malazan Book of the Fallen due to the sheer number of word counts in it. To give a bit of information on how intimidating this series is, the last two massive series I began and finished last year was The Realm of Elderlings (4.1 million words) by Robin Hobb and Malazan Book of the Fallen (3.3 million words) by Steven Erikson; the entirety of The Wheel of Time consists of 4.4 million words. That’s how gigantic this series is. If it weren’t because Sanderson is one of my top favorite authors of all time and the fact that I’ve completely run out of his adult fantasy books to read, I probably wouldn’t have started this series at all. That being said, no matter what the initial reason is, I’m really glad that I’ve taken the important first step towards conquering The Wheel of Time.

Picture: The Eye of the World by David Grove



The Eye of the World is the first book in Robert Jordan’s highly acclaimed series, The Wheel of Time. The story begins with our main character, Rand al’Thor and his friends escaping their home after a group of Trollocs attacked their home. I can’t recall whether I’ve mentioned this before, but I actually don’t mind The Chosen One trope. Let’s get this straight immediately, this is a very tropey start to a massive series; it’s a foundational book that seems to borrow a lot of elements from Tolkien and our real-world religions and mythologies. Although I do understand the reasons why a lot of readers dislike and even hate an epic fantasy that starts with a farm boy growing up to become the hero that eventually fight the dark lord to save the world, I tend to find this kind of premise—as long that they’re well executed—to be comfortable and enjoyable to read. A tale of good versus evil is something I never get tired of, and The Eye of the World sets out to lay a lot of groundwork for an epic tale of light versus darkness.

“As the Wheel of Time turns, places wear many names. Men wear many names, many faces. Different faces, but always the same man. Yet no one knows the Great Pattern the Wheel weaves, or even the Pattern of an Age. We can only watch, and study, and hope.”


It is an odd feeling reading this series for the first time in 2019. I enjoyed reading this book but if I were to read this, let’s say, a decade ago I probably would’ve loved it even more. Robert Jordan’s writing is well-known for being extremely detailed in his world-building; each locale, houses, and places were described intricately. Not a lot of modern epic fantasy goes to the length that Jordan did when it comes to being descriptive—and sometimes repetitive—about his world-building; it can be quite an overkill. Because of all this, the pacing did suffer, especially in the middle section of the book where the story progression follows a repetitive story progression and characters making stupid remarks and actions. I’m usually very receptive to characters continuously making stupid decisions and characters’ thoughts, but I found the characters’ behavior here to be understandable. Excluding Moiraine and Lan, the main characters from The Two Rivers are young and secluded people who live in their village all the time; like Frodo and Sam who never left the shire. The things that happened to Rand and his friends were sudden and dangerous, I feel like their actions were warranted and definitely better than I would’ve reacted.

This is a foundational book, almost everything about it felt, understandably, like an introductory guide to the world of this series. World-building takes priority; I truly loved every moment of reading the lore and history regarding this world. Just from the first book alone, we can already judge that Jordan knows his world inside out. By adapting some of our real-world religions, language, histories, and deities, Jordan was able to create a world full of extraordinary lore. The reincarnation concept surrounding The Dragon Reborn and Shai’tan, The Breaking of the World and how it affects the current society and stigma, and many more; I simply enjoyed reading them all.

“The fact that the price must be paid is proof it is worth paying.”


And that’s exactly it, time, money, and investment will be the biggest price we’ll have to pay in order to finish this series. Although the prologue starts immensely strong and I enjoyed—despite the pacing issue—most of the journey, I became fully engrossed only after I reached the 70% section. Revelations start being unraveled, the setup for the super detailed world-building starts paying off immensely, and most importantly, I’m finally acquainted with the characters and understand their personality more upon reaching this section. You can’t rush through this series, I’m a binge reader and just from my experience of reading this first installment, I already know that I have to pace myself going through it; I can’t binge this series the way I did The Realm of the Elderlings and Malazan Book of the Fallen. Take your time and be prepared for a long, and hopefully, satisfying journey. The Eye of the World may not be the most original start to an epic fantasy series, but it signaled a beginning for an incredibly grand adventure; one that I’m glad to partake and hopefully finish. Will I be able to do that? How rewarding will it all be?

The wheel weaves as the wheel wills…


You can order the book from: Book Depository (Free shipping)

You can find this and the rest of my reviews at Novel Notions
Profile Image for Jessica ❁ ➳ Silverbow ➳ ❁ .
1,258 reviews8,701 followers
December 22, 2021
Reviewed by: Rabid Reads

NOTICE: this reread is in preparation for finally biting the bullet and reading book 14. That means I HAVE NOT read book 14 yet. Please be mindful of this in the comments, both for me and for others who may or may not have progressed past this point in the series. Thank you.

It's hard for me to review this book, and only this book, objectively, b/c:

1. WoT is my favorite high fantasy series. Ever.
2. I've read the first eight books seven or eight times, maybe more (*whispers* I honestly don't know how many times I've read them). DON'T JUDGE.

The first time, I was nineteen. Ish. I read all of the available books, back-to-back, schoolwork be damned.

Then I read them again.

YES, really.

And I loved them even more the second time.

I thrive on detail, you see. And Robert Jordan was a master of details. I caught so many previously missed foreshadowings, clevernesses, nuances, etc. that had flown right over my head the first time.

It was spectacular.

Like when Thom, Mat, and Rand jumped aboard Bayle Domon's ship, and Thom spun a tale for the captain, explaining how they happened to come upon his ship with Trollocs (nasty man-beast things) on their heels:

Now it just so happened that he had earlier learned the location of Aridhol from a map given him many years ago by a dying friend in Illian whose life he had once saved . . .


B/c didn't know it at the time, but Domon is an . . . wait for it . . . Illianer. *tips hat*

The whole series is FULL of things like that.

Rand al'Thor, Mat Cauthon, and Perrin Aybara are three young men on the cusp of adulthood. They live in Emond's Field, where they have small village concerns and small village lives.

But when the previously mentioned Trollocs:

description

attack their village, it forces them to accept that such creatures of the Dark One are not mere stories made up to scare children. And when the two strangers who arrived just prior to the attack turn out to be an Aes Sedai (wielder of the One Power) and her Warder (warrior/protector), the manboys learn that a small village life is not in the cards for them (HA!) and are forced to leave their homes to protect their families from the Great Lord of the Dark's minions, who won't stop until all three are in their master's grasp.

Jordan does an excellent job of keeping you guessing: which manboy is the Dark One after and why? Is it really just the one, or is it all of them? If it is all of them, are they all equally important, or do the degrees vary? WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?!

B/c this is not a simple story.

And one thing we do know is that Rand, Perrin, and Mat are ta'veren, and as such they unwittingly pull others into their quest: a so-much-more-than-a-simple gleeman whose past regrets dictate his future actions, a young Ogier whose curiosity and wanderlust led him to leave his peaceful stedding home to see the things he's spent his life reading about, Rand's sweetheart who refuses to be left behind and longs to become an Aes Sedai herself, and the village Wisdom who feels compelled to both protect the young people from Aes Sedai machinations and also to break through the Warder's walls.

Among many others.

Each and every one of them vital in their own way.

Also vital are the multitudes of seemingly random observations and commentary that in reality are the foundations of awesomeness to come.

THESE BOOKS . . . layers and layers and still more layers. It's truly incredible.

And despite having read The Eye of the World so many times that I practically have it memorized, I have yet to grow immune to the very real and heartbreaking struggles that many of the characters face.

Whether it's Rand's terrible journey from his farm in the Westwood to Emond's Field, dragging his injured father to safety, Loial's treesong to preserve a small part of his Treebrother's sanctuary in the Blight, or Nynaeve's yearning for a man bound to a never-ending battle that he cannot win . . . I still feel it. *rubs fist over heart*

Deeply.

And if you are unaffected by Moiraine's tale of the long fallen Manetheren:

"But some did not flee. First in a trickle, then a river, then a flood, men went, not to safety, but to join the army fighting for their land. Shepherds with bows, and farmers with pitchforks, and woodsmen with axes. Women went, too, shouldering what weapons they could find and marching side by side with their men. No one made that journey who did not know they would never return. But it was their land. It had been their fathers', and it would be their children's, and they went to pay the price for it. Not a step of ground was given up until it was soaked with blood."


then you have only a black, shriveled thing in your chest cavity.

SO. As daunting as this series may be (and I will never deny that it is daunting) . . . if you are a lover of fantasy, and you haven't read Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time, you are doing yourself a major disservice. The Eye of the World has the best prologue I've ever read IN MY LIFE, so I challenge you to read it. It's just a prologue. And if you don't feel the need to see what happens next, then hey . . . all you're out is the 15 minutes it took you to read it. ALSO, no one is holding a gun to your head. There's no law that says once you start, you can't stop until THE END. Take your time. Enjoy it. Or don't. Whatever. But my recommendation is that you do.

These are the books that spawned my love of reading fantastical things as a adult.

Jessica Signature

My other reviews for this series:

The Great Hunt (Wheel of Time, #2) by Robert Jordan
The Dragon Reborn (Wheel of Time, #3) by Robert Jordan
The Shadow Rising (Wheel of Time, #4) by Robert Jordan
The Fires of Heaven (Wheel of Time, #5) by Robert Jordan
Lord of Chaos (Wheel of Time, #6) by Robert Jordan
A Crown of Swords (Wheel of Time, #7) by Robert Jordan
The Path of Daggers (Wheel of Time, #8) by Robert Jordan
Winter's Heart (Wheel of Time, #9) by Robert Jordan
Crossroads of Twilight (Wheel of Time, #10) by Robert Jordan
New Spring (Wheel of Time, #0) by Robert Jordan

Highlights:



Forsaken:



Foresight:



Musings:



It makes me laugh:

Profile Image for Sean Barrs .
1,113 reviews44.4k followers
September 18, 2018
Robert Jordan copied Tolkien but, I just don’t care. What I mean is that his writing shouldn’t be judged on this single fact. Yes, Jordan has borrowed aspects of Tolkien’s middle earth; yes, he has blatantly reworked many aspects, but he has also infused it with a few of his own original ideas. The result is a fantasy universe that resembles Tolkien’s and, in some ways, transcends it.

Not completely original, but completely brilliant

description

I found that Jordan’s world wasn’t as obvious as Tolkien’s. It is not a blatant light verses dark mission. There are characters that are evidently pure, but there are also those whose motives are not entirely clear. Well, at least not in the beginning. Don’t get me wrong I do, of course, prefer Tolkien’s writings; however, some of the characters in the Wheel of Time are more complex and are not entirely obvious in their convictions at the start of the series. For example the Gleeman has a very minor part at the start of the book, but towards the middle we realise that there is much more depth to him. He no doubt has a part that will be revealed in later books. The same is true of Lan and Moraine because their intentions are veiled at the beginning.

“She’s not for you, nor you for her; at least, not in the way you both want.”

Indeed, Moraine and Lan take the boys away from the village. Rand, Mat and Perrin are forced to go along with them for their own safety. They do not know who this mysterious figure is or the inner working of her stoic guard Lan. Their so called saviour is an Aes Sedai, which are a group that are renowned for doing thing for their own secret motives. Their actions may appear benevolent, though often there is a hidden reason behind them. So, it is not entirely clear, in the beginning, if the boys are being rescued, used or a little of both. Their rescuers are shunned, hated and feared by most people; thus, the reader is left to decide whether to judge them on their actions or their reputation.

A story of growth and perfect fantasy

description

Rand is the dragon reborn; he is essentially the chosen one of this fantasy universe. The three boys are unsure which of them is being hunted by the minions of the Dark One, but it is clear to the reader, and to Rand himself that it is, in fact, Rand the enemy is after. In spite of this, each of the boys overcomes a massive personal obstacle. Mat is almost lost forever when he takes a dagger of extraordinary evil. Perrin conquers his fear and discovers the kin of his soul: the wolf. Rand begins to accept his destiny and realise that it is completely unavoidable and definitive: it has happened before and will happen again.

“You cannot escape so easily, Dragon. It is not done between us. It will not be done until the end of time.”

The characters have come a long way in this novel, and I do look forward to seeing how far this series will take them. Rand is just becoming a man, but his youth is very much on the surface. I don’t think he is quite ready yet. The world is a dangerous place; it is full of warring factions and evil doers; it is full of thieves and backstabbers; it is full of mysterious, and blood thirsty, creatures that have their own dark desires. It is a world full of strange magic that is just waiting to be harnessed. For me, it is everything I want in high fantasy.

An inspiration

description

This book is not rich in originality; it is not a pioneer for its genre, but what it is, is a highly entertaining adventure. This may be another story of evil trying to conquer all; it may be a story we have seen many times before, and since, but it is still incredibly exciting to read. The plot is incredibly immersive and is just a pleasure to read. I don’t care if this isn’t completely original because I enjoyed it regardless.

So I’ve spoken a lot about the comparisons with Tolkien, but Jordan’s work has also clearly inspired other writers. They have used element of his magic system and some of his fantasy ideas. Is their writing bad because of this? No, it’s not. It just means that they took an idea that was good and reworked it for themselves; it means that they, like Jordan, were amongst the first to reuse an idea before it became too overworked and boring, lucky for them really, and lucky for us because we get to read great high fantasy more than once.

I enjoyed this book a lot, and I promise in my review for the rest of the series not to mention the name Tolkien. I just had to get that mighty obstacle out of the way. This book reminds why fantasy fiction is, and will always remain, my favourite genre.

The Wheel of Time
1. Eye of the World- An unoriginal five stars
2. The Great Hunt- A reluctant three stars
3. The Dragon Reborn- A well-developed four stars
4. The Shadow Rising- A strong four stars
5. The Fires of Heaven- A slow two stars

description

“The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth comes again. In one Age, called the Third Age by some, an Age yet to come, an Age long past, a wind rose in the Mountains of Mist. The wind was not the beginning. There are neither beginnings nor endings to the turning of the Wheel of Time. But it was a beginning.”
Profile Image for Anne.
3,917 reviews69.3k followers
May 17, 2023
The Wheel Weaves as the Wheel Wibble Wobbles...or something like that.
Ok, so in terms of a great fantasy, I think this has all the right components. I can see why this is such a beloved series.
For me personally, though? This was far too long and far too, not boring per se, but there was never a point where I couldn't put this book down.
Even the battle at the very end. Like, they were right in the middle with all the light and fire and screaming -I pushed pause and went to grab a burrito without a second thought.
Well, I'm sure it will all come out in the wash. Oh! I wonder if I have any fresh guacamole?

description

Ok, so this group of young (yet special) teenagers from a small village goes on a quest with some adults who have various important powers and backstories. The trailer for the upcoming tv show led me to believe that this would be filled with action and magic.

description

Ehhhh. Not so much.
There's action and battling but it's pretty mundane regular-dude fighting with some jazz hands thrown in until you get to the very end. And even then I didn't feel like it was worth the 30 hours it took to listen to this audiobook.
I hate to be this person, but I think I'd rather watch the show. Hopefully, they chop out all the boring riding on my horse for 3 days stuff and just get on with the more interesting parts.

description

It's not that the story has anything wrong with it, it was just that when it was over I realized that I had no interest in investing years of my life to find out how it all ends. If book one was (and I feel I can't say this enough) 30 HOURS, I can't imagine how long the next 13 books are going to be, and I'm just not ready for that sort of commitment.
Having said that, I'm reserving the right to change my mind later on down the line.

description

This is definitely a book that is geared toward readers who love that sort of dense high fantasy.
Right now, that's not me. But who knows what the future holds?
After all, the Wheel of Time turns and whatnot.
Profile Image for Mika.
24 reviews21 followers
September 23, 2008
Let me preface this by saying very clearly that I mean no offense to The Wheel of Time fans. It’s just my opinion, yes? Just my humble opinion.

So. Simply put: I hate this book. Somewhat passionately. The Romgi will attest to the fact that while I was reading I would mutter to myself about how ridiculous the plot was or how much I hated dragging myself through all 800+ pages. But I carried on.

The main character, Rand, was so uninteresting that I honestly didn’t care what happened to him, nor do I have any interest in reading any more books in the series to find out if his story continues. I hope it doesn’t. I hope he dies a gruesome and painful death, leaving the entire Wheel of Time world to decay and be overrun by the forces of evil. Having a flawed main character is sort of necessary, but where were Rand’s strengths? He had a few spots of luck, and happened to be traveling with people significantly more talented than he. When he wasn’t protected by others’ cleverness and skill, he was stuck with Mat, who may possibly be the most idiotic character ever created. Perhaps that’s going a bit far. Mat is almost without a doubt the most idiotic character I have ever had to read about. I hate Mat about as much as I hate this book. His sole purpose as a main character is to screw things up for everyone else while being absolutely necessary to the Quest or Mission or whatever. Gosh I hate him.

Ok, there were some ok parts. Things I enjoyed on some level: Perrin (although couldn’t the author think of a name slightly less similar to Peregrin?) and his wolfness; the Tuatha’an (Gypsies); and Loial, an Ogier (basically a redesigned Ent).

The whole book was just such a patchwork collection of ideas and myths and fantasy cliches, like the author had a hat full of slips of paper with possible elements he could use and randomly pulled them out. To be fair, it appears he put quite a bit of thought into connecting everything once it was out, but seriously - Gypsies and yin-yang in the same story? A little weird, don’t you think? Oh yeah, and then there are obvious copies of Orcs and Ringwraiths, which the author intended to be similar. Not creative! Do not give him credit for that!

I feel I’ve gone on long enough. But just in case you didn’t catch my opinion, The Eye of the World has a horribly contrived plot, uninteresting or downright annoying characters, and too many pieces of stories to be worth the many hours of my life that were sucked away by reading it.

Yuck.

P.S. I think Robert Jordan is a lousy writer. Aside from not having enough of his own ideas, he just doesn’t have the literary genius to make this book worth it. The Eye of the World reads like a cheap fantasy book you’d pick up from the $1 bin at a used bookstore, except it happens to be one of the bestselling books ever. Undeservedly so, I think.
Profile Image for Mario the lone bookwolf.
793 reviews3,602 followers
October 20, 2022
The ultimate worldbuilding wheel written and continued by two of the biggest fantasy prodigies

Rands´thousands of pages long story begins grim and dark
Not much time to get an immortal positive high elve fantasy kick, because desperation sets in before hope has a chance. But at least it´s a great option and possibility to take a longer, sometimes death, undeath, or just necromantic (I differentiate between just primitive being a zombie and sophisticated zombifying), walk and meet the not just stereotypical, but simply necessary, never stop a winning system, crew. Some readers are fed up with the always same combination of characters, abilities, and Sanderson´s laws of magic
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brandon...
but

What is the alternative?
Well, see, there isn´t any, or at least not many satisfying ones. Not stereotypical characters would seem unlikely for many fantasy readers and crush the suspension of disbelief. The same would happen with drastic changes to the distribution and power of magic abilities, rock paper scissors war concepts, and many other cornerstones of fantasy tropes. Without it, the protagonists couldn´t

Find an amazing cast and see their powers and mental struggles in action.
By this, the first book perfectly explains everything, opens many clear and easy to find and remember story paths, and leaves the reader hungering for more and an expansion of the already amazing universe. In later parts,
Jordan expands the same concept of one gang members` exposition, backstory, tragedy, ideology, etc. the same way Rand is finding new friends and foes.

I still don´t feel genre savvy enough to give an objective analysis, if this is even possible
But I don´t worry too much about good, clean reviewing practice and yet do it, who cares? This thing is so mindblowing, entertaining, complex, and thrilling that just George R R Martin and the first parts of some of the all time best listed fantasy series come to my mind as comparison options.

Vivisecting and reconstructing Campbells' heroes journey in ultra slow mode
See in awe how each step is taken in extreme detail to better understand how freaking amazing fantasy and science fantasy unfold. That´s how it was, is, and will be done forever, because it seems to be the millennia old best way to get the audience hooked on, no matter how illiterate in the past or gaga by social media they are in the present.

Jordan began but Sanderson finished
And I guess many could have found the way to the original Jordan series by Sandersons´ meanwhile legendary epicality and one of his amazing universes. A unique case in fantasy history, two of the biggest minds brought together by death.

The reason why I stopped at the moment, although the whole original series by Jordan is screaming to be continued
It´s just too absorbing, I can´t and don´t want to read anything else, so the only option is to stop for a while cold turkey style. Which isn´t really that easy, because, well, I´ve the whole original series (still without the Sanderson expansion package addon stuff after Jordans´death) lurking right beside me just 3 Meters from the desktop pc, and sometimes strangely even whispering from my bookshelves to read them. It´s a bit of a problem that

Fantasy series are sometimes just too long
One could read hundreds of other books in the time spent in some fantasy universes and that´s truly somewhat a first world problem. This „I don´t know how I should best spend the massive amounts of free reading time in my cozy house. This stress is truly killing me“ sounds ridiculous, but I´m strangely really spending time I could read thinking about what to read next and doing too much research, review reading, and literary price checking to find the best and strongest stuff. Damned compulsion neurosis.

Stoneage storytellers inspired ancient myths that inspired Tolkien who inspired Jordan who inspired Sanderson who inspires
Let´s say multi k aspiring fantasy authors at the moment. This idea is fascinating because it´s comparable to epigenetics and old school evolution of living consciences big and small, a trip to the future each human being plays a role in, by interacting with and thereby manipulating and forever changing its physical and digital environment. As I just did it with you.

Tropes show how literature is conceptualized and created and which mixture of elements makes works and genres unique:
https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.ph...
September 3, 2015
2 stars for the benefit of the doubt, because I DNFed this shit at page 10. This is my new record.

Look, I'm sorry. This is another one of those Lord-of-the-Rings moment where I appreciate the effort, but this is not for me. Within the short amount that I read, I had names and random bits of history thrown at me and maybe it's because it's this early in the morning, but I nearly fell asleep and I honestly can't recall anything that I've read. I have a feeling I'd have a better time reading a textbook.
Profile Image for Markus.
471 reviews1,522 followers
March 3, 2016
"And the Shadow fell upon the land, and the world was riven stone from stone. The oceans fled, and the mountains were swallowed up, and the nations were scattered to the eight corners of the World. The moon was as blood, and the sun was as ashes. The seas boiled, and the living envied the dead. All was shattered, and all but memory lost, and one memory above all others, of him who brought the Shadow and the Breaking of the World. And him they named Dragon.

And it came to pass in those days, as it had come before and would come again, that the Dark lay heavy on the land and weighed down the hearts of men, and the green things failed, and hope died. And men cried out to the Creator, saying, O Light of the Heavens, Light of the World, let the Promised One be born of the mountain, according to the prophecies, as he was in ages past and will be in ages to come. Let the Prince of the Morning sing to the land that green things will grow and the valleys give forth lambs. Let the arm of the Lord of the Dawn shelter us from the Dark, and the great sword of justice defend us. Let the Dragon ride again on the winds of time."

I have read a lot of books throughout my mere twenty years of life. Some deeply fascinating, others not so much. And every once in a while I am able to lay my eyes on something truly extraordinary. One of those is definitely The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan.

This is not a book turning fantasy literature on its head, or even providing the genre with major changes. When reading it, I was quite easily able to find strong similarities with lots of previous works of fantasy and science fiction, including The Lord of the Rings, Dune and Shannara. It is not among the most innovative books I have read. It is not among the most exciting books I have read. It is, however, a stunning work of pure quality which deserves to be read by all fantasy enthusiasts out there.

I do not intend to write in great lengths about the story and the characters in this review, and I feel that I have already mentioned what needs to be mentioned. Most of you have already read this book. Those who have not, should really take the time and effort to do so. It is absolutely worth it.

When I had read more books in the series, it had grown more and more in my estimate. Even at that early stage, this was definitely one of my favourite fantasy series ever. And definitely the best example of fantasy worldbuilding since Tolkien. At that point I was starting to wonder whether I actually considered it better than even my beloved A Song of Ice and Fire, but only time would tell there.

After two years of reading, the longest I have ever spent on one single story, I have reached the end. And because of my never-ending obsession with favourites, I can finally make the official statement: Wheel of Time is my favourite fantasy series of all time. That still means it is surpassed by Tolkien's works, which do not make up a series, but this is just about the highest praise I can give.

It has its boring parts just as it has its brilliant parts. It has endless descriptions of brain-tugging and Jordan's ridiculously annoying battle of the sexes. It has the worst protagonists I have ever met in fictional literature. And so much more. But I don't care.

Because it also has the most magnificent setting you could possibly imagine. It has brilliant characters, wondrous and fantastic places, and deep and thrilling backstories wherever you turn. Not to even mention Robert Jordan's astounding writing.

The best part about Wheel of Time is that it gives me a feeling only one book has been able to give me before. One. It should be needless to name that one, but this is definitely high praise coming from me.

So treat this series like an exquisite wine. Save it for the perfect occasion, and then savour every drop. It can be a challenge to get through, but it is definitely worth it.

This is in my eyes fantasy as it should be written.

"The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth comes again."

description

(Note: Review updated and expanded 3/3/2016)

Wheel of Time reviews:
#1 The Eye of the World
#2 The Great Hunt
#3 The Dragon Reborn
#4 The Shadow Rising
#5 The Fires of Heaven
#6 Lord of Chaos
#7 A Crown of Swords
#8 The Path of Daggers
#9 Winter's Heart
#10 Crossroads of Twilight
#11 Knife of Dreams
#12 The Gathering Storm
#13 Towers of Midnight
#14 A Memory of Light
Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,566 reviews56.5k followers
January 25, 2022
The Eye of the World (Wheel of Time, #1), Robert Jordan

The Eye of the World is a fantasy novel by American writer Robert Jordan, the first book of The Wheel of Time series. It was published by Tor Books and released on January 16, 1990.

The Eye of the World revolves around protagonists Rand al'Thor, Matrim (Mat) Cauthon, Perrin Aybara, Egwene al'Vere, and Nynaeve al'Meara, after their residence of "Emond's Field" is unexpectedly attacked by Trollocs (the antagonist's soldiers) and a Myrddraal (the undead-like officer commanding the Trollocs) intent on capturing Rand, Mat, and Perrin. To save their village from further attacks, Rand, Mat, Perrin, and Egwene flee it, accompanied by the Aes Sedai Moiraine Damodred, her Warder Al'Lan Mandragoran, and gleeman Thom Merrilin, and later joined by Wisdom Nynaeve al'Meara. Pursued by increasing numbers of Trollocs and Myrddraal, the travellers take refuge in the abandoned city of Shadar Logoth, where Mat steals a cursed dagger, thus becoming infected by the malevolent Mashadar.

While escaping the city the travelers are separated; Rand, Mat, and Thom travel by boat to Whitebridge, where Thom is lost allowing Rand and Mat to escape a Myrddraal. In Caemlyn, Rand befriends an Ogier named Loial. Trying to catch a glimpse of the recently captured False Dragon, Rand befriends Elayne Trakand, heir apparent to the throne of Andor, and her brothers Gawyn Trakand and Galad Damodred. Rand is then taken before Queen Morgase, her Aes Sedai advisor, Elaida; and General of Queensguard Gareth Bryne, and released without charge, in spite of Elaida's grave pronouncements regarding Rand.

تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز پنجم ماه می سال2018میلادی

عنوان: چشم جهان کتاب نخست از سری چرخ زمان؛ نویسنده: رابرت جردن؛ مترجم بهرنگ مافی؛ ویراستار فرزاد فرید؛ تهران، انتشارات پریان؛ سال1397؛ در دو جلد در1285ص، جلد نخست در539ص؛ شابک9786007058459؛ عنوان جلد نخست خروج از دو رود (دو رودخانه)؛ عنوان جلد دوم ورود به مرگزار در720ص؛ شابک جلد دوم9786007058558؛ موضوع داستانهای نویسندگان ایالات متحده آمریکا - سده20م

دنیای «چرخ زمان»، توسط «خالق» یا «نور» ساخته می‌شود، و دشمن اصلی خودش یعنی: شیطان (که در کتاب بیشتر با نام «دارک وان» شناخته می‌شود) را، زندانی کرده، و نشان جادویی به در زندان می‌نهد؛ از دیگر سو، «خالق» برای اداره ی دنیایی که ساخته‌، چرخ زمان را می‌آراید، تا «چرخ زمان»، فرمانروا بر همه چیز است؛ «چرخ»، هفت قسمت دارد، و هر قسمتش نشان دهنده ی یک دوره ی زمانی است؛

منبع انرژی «چرخ» قدرت یگانه است، که منبع قدرت یگانه هم، «منبع اصلی» نام دارد، و انسان‌هایی هستند، که می‌توانند از این توانایی سود ببرند، آن‌ها «چنلر» نامیده می‌شوند؛ در دنیا سازمانی نیز وجود دارد، به نام: «آئس سدای»، که به معنی «خدمتگزاران همه» است، و از: دانشمندان، و اشراف، تشکیل شده‌ است؛ در طی یکی از آزمایشات همین سازمان، رخدادی برای زندان «دارک وان» میافتد، و باعث می‌شود او بتواند، بر دنیا تأثیر بگذارد؛ پس از این «دارک وان»، به کسانی که می‌خواهند، به او یاری کنند، قول قدرت، و جاودانگی می‌دهد؛ کسانیکه به او یاری می‌کنند، «دوستان تاریکی» لقب می‌گیرند؛

یک سده، پس از به وجود آمدن «شکاف»، جنگ آشکاری، میان نیروهای «روشنایی» و «تاریکی»، شکل می‌گیرد، و سرانجام، یک فرمانده، به نام: «لویس‌ترین تلامون»، که با لقب «اژدها» هم، شناخته می‌شود، «اژدها»، نیروی متحدی از «چنلرها»، و سربازان را، سازمان می‌دهد، تا دوباره زندان «دارک وان» را، مهر و موم کنند؛ اما در این میان، «دارک وان»، نفرینی را رها می‌کند، که باعث دیوانه شدن همه ی «چنلر»های مرد، می‌شود؛ «لویس‌ترین تلامون»، یا همان «اژدها»، آغاز به کشتن خویشان، و دوستان خویش میکند، و پس از آن، با نام «خویشاوندکش» شناخته میشود؛ فردی به نام «ایشمائیل»، که فرمانده نیروهای «تاریکی» بوده، برای لحظه‌ ای، عقل «اژدها» را، به او برمی‌گرداند، و «اژدها» وقتی می‌فهمد، که ��ه کارهایی انجام داده‌، خودکشی می‌کند

اینکار، باعث رخدادهای مهمی، در همین دنیا می‌شود، از جمله اینکه، «چنلر»های زن، دوباره «آئس سدای» را، گرد هم می‌آورند، اما استفاده از قدرت یگانه را، تنها به زن‌ها محدود میکنند، و اجازه ی استفاده از آن را، به مردها نمی‌دهند؛ و در این دوره، جنگ‌هایی در حال رخ دادن است، که در یکی از آن‌ها، به نام جنگ‌های: «ترولاک»، خدمتگزاران تاریکی، به مدت چند صد سال، جنگی را، برای نابودی دنیا، پیش می‌برند؛ فضای داستان، همانند فضای دوره ی «ویکتوریایی»، و سده های میانی میلادی در «اروپا» است؛ یک نکته مهم، که محور اصلی داستان را، شکل می‌دهد، یک پیشگویی است: «روزی بالاخره دارک وان آزاد شده، و اژدها هم دوباره متولد خواهد شد، تا با او مبارزه کند»؛

چرخ زمان میچرخد، و روزگاران، با سده ها میآیند، و میروند، با بر جای گذاشتن یادمانهایی، که افسانه شده اند؛ افسانه ها، اسطوره میشوند، و حتی اسطوره نیز، گاه تا زمانی دراز، فراموش میشود، تا آن زمان که، سده هایی که در آن آمده اند، دوباره بازگردد؛ در عصر سوم، عصر پیشگویی، جهان و زمان، خود را در تعادل آویزان میکنند؛ چه چیزی بود، چه خواهد بود، و چه چیزی ممکن است هنوز تحت سایه قرار داشته باشد؛ هنگامی میرسد که «دو رودخانه» توسط «ترولوکس»، مورد یورش قرار میگیرند، بگذار «اژدها» بار دیگر بر بادهای زمان بتازد

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 26/11/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ 04/11/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller.
724 reviews1,202 followers
September 8, 2017
I would like to start out by saying: don’t let my conservative rating scare you off from this series. At least 75% of customers I talk to about fantasy rank this series in their top 3, if not their #1. I am definitely the minority here, as the book didn’t even make my top 20.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s still a classic that deserves its place as one of the all-time fantasy greats, it just happened to have some elements that I personally didn’t care for. As the beginning of an epic quest not unlike that of Tolkien, I found it a bit long-winded. Not boring, mind you, as there were several highly developed and exciting characters (who were frankly the biggest reasons why I’m tempted to read the second book). The magic system and overall measure of time were also highly original and interesting, even though we didn’t get to learn much about them.

No, what the book lacked is that sense of excitement I usually feel while reading a great fantasy novel. I believe this is due to poor pacing decisions rather than any issues with the plot. It was just too slow-moving with too many senseless encounters. There also wasn’t much of an arc, lacking the sort of emotional highs and lows that usually go along with good storytelling. I definitely would’ve appreciated more time spent on the climax of the book rather than endless chapters of the characters meeting one fat innkeeper after another. I guess I just missed that emotional payoff – I suppose I’ll have to evaluate the series as a whole for that kind of reaction.

Overall, I respect this author a great deal, as I believe he has done wonders for the fantasy genre by inspiring new authors every day. There are just too many out there that I enjoyed more.

Via Book Reviews by Niki Hawkes at www.nikihawkes.com

Other books you might like (better):

Magician Apprentice (The Riftwar Saga, #1) by Raymond E. Feist Wizard's First Rule (Sword of Truth, #1) by Terry Goodkind The Shadow of What Was Lost (The Licanius Trilogy, #1) by James Islington Pawn of Prophecy (The Belgariad, #1) by David Eddings Assassin's Apprentice (Farseer Trilogy, #1) by Robin Hobb
October 20, 2016
Book One of my epic buddy read of the Wheel of Time world with Branwen Sedai, one of the nicest people of OUR world! :D

From the Eye of the World, you can see just how much danger the world is really in!

(That's not in the book, I just made that up myself. Don't worry, Robert Jordan's writing isn't nearly as cheesy as mine!)

Life in the village of Emond's Field had always been peaceful. Sure, the people sometimes argued, as families do from time to time. But ultimately, the village was a tight-knit community, and people rarely left, since they had everything they needed at home. It was a quiet life, but a fruitful one. One where people felt safe enough to leave their doors open to everyone, secure in the knowledge that the greatest evil in the world, the one most people only refer to as the Dark One rather than daring to even speak its name, was safely locked up and could no longer hurt them.

That all changed the night the invaders came into town. Vicious misshapen creatures and supernatural fiends from people's worst nightmares. And their presence means something even more terrifying. The seals on the Dark One's prison are not as secure as they thought. A great evil is spreading throughout the land, whispering in people's ears and poisoning and corrupting anyone who chooses to listen.

Now, a group of youngsters from the village find themselves chased from their safe home. They've traded their quiet lives for a daring adventure, one worthy of the greatest storybooks...but only if they survive long enough to tell it. And as they find themselves entwined in the ultimate war of light verses darkness, there is one burning question that haunts them throughout..."Is one of them destined to be the person to save the world...or to destroy it?


I'm actually writing this review long after reading the book, and truth be told, I still haven't been able to wrap my head completely around it! Robert Jordan's world-building is so vast and intricate, it takes time to be able to absorb it all. His lush descriptions of the environment bring his words to like so effectively, you sometimes feel like you're living the book rather than reading it. But I think the book's greatest strength is its main characters, who I'll be discussing in order of my own personal preference:

Moiraine - "Whatever the Dark One wants, I oppose, so hear this and know it true. Before I let the Dark One have you, I will destroy you myself."

Moiraine is part of a society of magic wielders called the Aes Sedai. Later books get more into the various factions of the Sedai and the ideological differences between them all, but mostly what we're told about the Sedai in this volume is that many people fear them...and they may be right in doing so! Strong in mind, spirit and ability, Moiraine is a commanding yet charming presence from the moment she arrives at Emond's Field. Her magical powers and sense of authority reminded me of Tolkien's Gandalf...right up until the point where Moiraine promised the boys she would murder them if it was the only way to keep the Dark One from claiming them! That's when I realized Moiraine is really more like Gandalf if Gandalf's contingency plan was to throw Frodo into volcano along with the Ring if he had to!


"Of course, if anyone earned the right to throw Frodo into the fire, it was Sam!"

Nynaeve - (Perrin talking about Nynaeve): "You think a little thing like a sunken ferry could stop her?"

Known as The Wisdom of Emond's Field, Nynaeve mostly acted as a healer and a mediator during her time there. I'll be honest, at first I found Nynaeve a little abrasive. Not only does her temper cause her to hurt people with her words, sometimes she even hits them with a large stick, and what first felt like "tough love" starts to feel more like a WrestleMania event! (For the record, if Nynaeve was a pro wrestler, she's so tough she would win every match, no matter who was actually scripted to win!)" However, when a group of Two Rivers villagers leave with Moiraine, Nynaeve travels many miles and face many dangers just to bring them back. While the others are mostly motivated by self-preservation, Nynaeve's main concern was to protect the people of her village. How could I not admire Nynaeve after that? She started out one of my least favorite characters and by the book's end had become one of my favorites instead!

Rand - "A fine day for going unnoticed! I might as well carry a sign!"

Most of the book is told through Rand's POV, and it was through him that I felt Jordan pulled off his best writing trick. Rand is very different from most fantasy novel heroes. Whereas most fantasy protagonists tend to be swashbuckling, Rand manages to be...uh, whatever the exact opposite of swashbuckling is! (Unswashbuckling???) If he's running across a 100-acre field that has only one rock in it, you can bet Rand will manage to trip over that rock! If a stranger holding a warhammer asked Rand, "Would you please follow me into this trap?", Rand will be there right behind him! At times, Rand made me want to scream. But I also recognized that that was due to the brilliance of Robert Jordan's writing. Rand acts exactly like what he's supposed to be, a sheltered, innocent boy who is in way over his head. Add to that his affable personality, and it's impossible not to like him...which makes it even harder to watch when he manages to blunder into a life-threatening situation for the 1,000th time that chapter!

Lan - "Anything can be a weapon, if the man or woman who holds it has the nerve and will to make it so."

Jimi Hendrix...Sean Connery...Samuel L. Jackson...some people were just born to be cool...

"This is NOT one of those people!"

Strong and stoic, Lan makes an impression as soon as he arrives with Moiraine. While Moiraine is really the more powerful of the two, Lan is still the more intimidating one. What's even more impressive is that Lan manages to be bad-ass not in what he says, but in what he DOESN'T say! Lan rarely feels the need to threaten anyone, as one look into his eyes tells people you're more likely to survive a 20,000 foot drop (sans parachute) than a fight with him! Lan is so confident he never feels the need to prove himself to anyone, and as a result he never loses his cool. In fact, he manages to be even cooler than Sean Connery and Samuel L. Jackson combined! (But not Jimi Hendrix...even in a fantasy novel, someone being cooler than Hendrix is just too far-fetched!)

Perrin - "Leaders in stories never had to put up with this sort of thing."

Of the three Emond's Field boys that travel with Moiraine, Perrin is the most compassionate. Physically stronger than the other two, but also kinder in nature, Perrin is very likable. Awkward, but likeable. In these types of novels, the characters usually have to get used to the idea of killing their enemies right away, but what makes Perrin stand out is that he NEVER gets used to it. Facing so many dangerous foes, in order to survive, Perrin may have to fight, but he doesn't have to like it!

Egwene - "No one tells us how to be men. We just are."
"That is probably why you make such a bad job of it."


Egwene managed to charm me, even though she really has the weakest motivation in the story. While the boys of Emond's Field are running for their lives, and Nynaeve is pursuing them to try to protect them, Egwene says she's tagging along because she wants adventure. (You would think after her village was ransacked the night before, the ol' adventure meter would have been full already!) Of course, it's entirely possible Egwene was really just going with them because she was concerned about the boys, but that theory is somewhat weakened by the fact that she can't go 5 seconds without hurling an insult at one of them! Still, her wit and feisty nature made me like her even in the moments when she was hard to like.

Loial - "A mob chased me all the way across the city. I'm afraid I was beginning to get a little upset"

Since I said I would talk about these characters in the order in which I liked them, the fact that Loial appears second-to-last may seem like a swipe at him, but really it's a testament as to how great the other characters are! Giving new meaning to the phrase "gentle giant", Loial is a Ogier (basically an ogre) who would much rather have a book in his hand than a weapon. Really, the only reason Loial doesn't make quite as much of an impression in the story as the others is because he is introduced much later in the book than everyone else.

Mat - "So you're having trouble with a couple of farmboys. Maybe you Darkfriends aren't as dangerous as I've always heard."

Sometimes you wish book characters could come to life because they're so awesome. In Mat's case, I wanted him to come to life just so I could murder him! The only character I couldn't stand, Mat manages to exude 10 times the foolishness of Rand yet 0 times the charm. He's obnoxious and grating. The scariest part is, I get the feeling Mat was supposed to be the comic relief character, despite the fact that he rarely does anything funny. Mat is to comedy what Arnold Schwarzenegger is...to comedy!


In fairness to Mat, I'm currently reading Book Three in the series, and he does show a good amount of character growth by then...but that doesn't change the fact that all throughout this book, while Mat was being chased by the Dark One, I found myself rooting for the Dark One!

While I loved this book, I will say that it's not for everyone. The world-building is a little clunky at times, as Jordan has a tendency to make mentions of characters and places long before they actually appear in the story. In some ways, this makes the later books more rewarding, as things that were left a mystery in book one make much more sense later on. Also, there are long gaps in the action sometimes, so anyone looking for a fast-paced adventure may be frustrated with this one. However, if you're looking for a rich world to explore filled with compelling characters (and Mat), then it's time for you to journey to the Eye of the World!

P.S. - Here was my original review, I wrote it right after a few GoodReads users got busted for plagiarism, and I addressed it in my usual subtle way...

I, David Green, absolutely loved this book! It's going right on my favorites shelf, which is named "David Green's favorites", because my name is, in fact, David Green! I can't wait to read the rest of the series which has already been uploaded to David Green's (that's me) Kindle!

Let's see you copy/paste THAT, review thieves! ;)
1
Profile Image for Navessa.
Author 10 books7,510 followers
April 15, 2018
*SPOILER FREE*

You know that thing that happens with your favorite series? You know, that thing. Someone either asks you about it, or you sit down to try and write a review for one of the installments, and all you say or type is dying animal noises. Kinda like this:

"Navessa, what did you think of this book?"
"AAAAARRRRRRRHHHHNNNNNNNNNAAAAACCCCC"
"Um...are you okay?"
"AAAAARRRRRRRHHHHNNNNNNNNNAAAAACCCCC"
"Are you having some sort of fit right now? Do I need to call someone?"
"AAAAARRRRRRRHHHHNNNNNNNNNAAAAACCCCC"


That's me with this series. I've actually made that noise at people. In public.

I don't think this can technically be called a brain fart, because that only applies for when you're drawing a blank. We need a new term. How about brain constipation?

Brain Constipation: when you have so much to say that you can't get anything out.

Yeah, I think I like that.

Okay, so here's me trying to type past my desire to hit caps lock and slap at the keyboard like some sort of hysterical sea lion.

This series, without a doubt, is nothing short of a masterpiece. This is (by far) the most richly imagined world I have ever come across in literature. And the way it all unfolds is so organic that you don't even realize you just read twenty pages of world building, because it happens mostly through conversations, because you learn about this world as the main characters do.

They hail from a tiny town as far away from civilization as you can get. When the book begins, they know next to nothing about the outside world other than rumors. Everything changes for them one spring evening, and before they know it, they're brought face to face with creatures that they thought only existed in stories used to frighten children into behaving.

This book follows the same pattern that most of the books in this series do. It's told mostly through the perspectives of our main characters, half of whom are male, and half of whom are female. Nearly 90% of it is made up of world building, character building, plot twists, and traveling, while the last 10% or so is dedicated to the climax. Throughout this series you learn about the unique cultures and peoples of each country the MCs travel through, their customs, their politics, and their everyday lives.

I know that seems pretty daunting, but Jordan adds the perfect amount of action and intrigue to every single chapter, balancing out the world building so that it never feels like you're reading an info-dump. Quite a feat when you take into account that the books in this series are all over 600 pages long.

In short, this series is nothing more than a masterpiece. A staggering one. It actually makes me feel a little bad about myself. Because my imagination is a small, sad thing compared to what Jordan's was.

Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest
Profile Image for Matthew.
1,219 reviews8,815 followers
October 23, 2019
If you like fantasy stories with lots of wandering around, have I got the book for you!

The Eye of the World has:

-Roving
-Trekking
-Jaunting
-Roaming
-Sneaking

And, occasionally

-Stops in cities, castles, etc. for a few pages

Just kidding! But, really, I am not! 😊

I did enjoy this book, but the majority of it is discussion between characters while they are travelling long distances to both escape baddies and make their way to mystical places. While I don’t believe they actually make it anywhere they were intending to go over the course of the book, they do face off against quite a few nasty evil dudes! In the end, I plan to move on to the next book because it is not really a cliffhanger as much as it is the end of just another chapter.

In general, fantasy usually involves questing – ever since the Godfather of questing, Tolkien, sent the Fellowship towards Mordor. But, for me (and this is a very specific “Me” opinion), I like a good balance between action and questing. Many fantasy novels have been recommended to me that are obviously heavier on the questing and less on the action. These are very adored by some, but I think it takes a little more to get me engaged. I will continue this series because I enjoyed it enough despite the excess of questing and I have been told it may click with me more by book three.

I took a long time to read this because I think the excess of wandering made it a bit of a slog for me. Even though I liked it, I really could only stay interested for about 15 pages at a time. I plan to listen to the rest of the series, which I think is the perfect plan as it includes at least 15 very voluminous tomes. If I just read them I probably wouldn’t finish until I am 80.

Thank you to Melissa for sending me a copy of this book for Christmas. It was one I have been meaning to read for over two decades and it was just the push I needed! Onward to the next part of the journey!
Profile Image for Justin (Look Alive Books).
278 reviews2,258 followers
March 17, 2023
March 2023 - Third time reading this one, and you may be thinking, “Wow! Justin really loves The Wheel of Time Series!” Well, I guess I just really love this book (and the next two in the series) because that’s as far as I’ve made it. I’ve consistently said I’ll finish the series, and I never do. So I won’t commit to it, but I will say this will be the year I actually finish the series, probably, maybe.

Also, it was interesting to read this right after reading The Fellowship of the Ring. There are definitely some major comparisons between the two, but I know this series very quickly becomes its own thing. I’ll have more to say on that later. On to The Great Hunt, possibly, who knows.

————-

Second time through this thing, and I will actually continue this series this time around. Here’s my 2020 review:

———-



Well, ladies and gentlemen, gleemen and Aes Sedai, Darkfriends and Wisdom, boy did this book hit me at the right time.

I was bumbling around town like I always do. I was in this weird time in my life just wandering around thinking about books and what I should read next. I was parading down the cold streets with a warm beverage, wearing a sweater, considering my options, sipping my latte, letting the heat warm my bones and the caffeine electrify my brain.

I had a lot of demands for whatever book I would read next. I was like a rock star passing off my rider to a sold out venue. I wasn’t playing unless all of my requests were accommodated. Well, Robert Jordan delivered for me. And now I have to read 13 more long, winding books to finish this epic journey I’ve begun.

At the top of my list was some kind of epic fantasy book that was kind of like Lord of the Rings but different. This book apparently gets a lot of negativity because it copies so much from Tolkien, but I didn’t care. When I look for a new book, or movie, or band, or whatever, aren’t I always looking for comparisons? Isn’t every book now compared to Gone Girl because it was popular and people wanted something similar to read for the rest of their lives? It’s the same thing here. He does borrow a lot from Tolkien, but he also has a lot more story to tell and my guess is his story is going to veer off into many other directions. So I didn’t care, and I wasn’t upset about it.

Next up on my list was a story with lots of inns and innkeepers. Man, I just loved every time these guys wandered into a new town, found that town’s inn with its fun little name, talked to that inn’s hospitable and maybe sinister innkeeper, met more townsfolk, rested, strategized, etc. I couldn’t give enough of all of these towns and the people inhabiting them. I loved every time they reached s new destination and the story unfolded more and more. I wanted inns and innkeepers, and I got a daggum plethora of them.

Those were the only two requirements, really.

I would love to rate this book five stars. I really had a blast reading and following Rand and his crew on their wild adventures. I loved meeting new people and learning more about the history and setting of the story. My only complaint is that there are a ton of people! There are so many words and concepts I just don’t get yet! I have so much to learn! So as epic and fun as this book is, it’s also challenging and not easy to keep up with at times. I had to stop and remind myself who people were sometimes, and I still have a lot of questions. I also have a lot more to read so I’m sure things will work themselves out.

If you love fantasy books and books with innkeepers, boy do I have the book for you! If you like Lord of the Rings, boy so I have a carbon copy of that story to give to you! I’m kidding. Stop. What’s the hunt for the Great Horn anyway? I’m about to find out! I’m all in on this adventure. Can’t wait to keep truckin’ along with these guys.

I just hope there are even more inns and innkeepers in the next book.
Profile Image for Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽.
1,880 reviews22.7k followers
December 15, 2019
3.5 stars. Review first posted at Fantasy Literature:

The massive length, not only of The Eye of the World itself but the entire epic WHEEL OF TIME fantasy series, along with some differences in critical opinion regarding the literary worth of this series, has always daunted me. But I thought I owed it to myself to read at least this first book and judge for myself, so when the Buddies, Books and Baubles group here at Goodreads decided to buddy read the series, I was happy to seize the opportunity. In the end, this book was both more and less than I had anticipated.

The plot primarily follows the adventures of three young men from a farming community ― Rand, Mat and Perrin ― whose sheltered lives are uprooted when monstrous Trollocs, led by undead Myrddraal, attack the village and their homes. When it becomes clear that the attack was focused on these three, they leave the village in the company of some more experienced and powerful individuals who “happened” to be there at the time of the attack, along with Egwene, a young woman from the village. Other characters join their journey along the way, as they travel to a destination that they hope will protect them from the evil that seeks to capture their souls and, ultimately to the mysterious Eye of the World itself, to shore up the forces that imprison this evil.

Robert Jordan’s debts to J.R.R. Tolkien are fairly obvious: the group of unsophisticated young men, from a small, isolated community, join a quest and undertake a long journey, continuously battling against a powerful malevolent force and pursued by its evil minions. The company is split apart during the journey. It’s no wonder that I kept envisioning orcs every time the Trollocs appeared on the page, notwithstanding their initial description as having an animal-like appearance.

It’s a highly detailed story and world (as it should be, at 800+ pages), but the pace of The Eye of the World is frequently plodding. My detachment from the tale wasn’t helped by the repeated immature actions and decisions of several of the characters, particularly Mat, whose greed and irritating penchant for mischief endanger both himself and the group. Rand is a more sympathetic character, although he oozes “The Chosen One” vibes and occasionally his obliviousness is frustrating. Both Rand and Mat read younger than the 19- or 20-year-old men they are supposed to be. The most interesting of the trio was Perrin, who initially seems slow-witted but then develops some unexpected depth, particularly when he meets Elyas, a man accompanied by a wolf with which he telepathically communicates. Elyas claims that Perrin also has the ability to mindspeak with wolves. Perrin is resistant to the idea but here, as so often is the case, resistance against your destiny is futile.

The Eye of the World did become more absorbing and interesting as I got deeper into the tale, when some intriguing new characters were introduced and the narrative took some unexpected turns. In the end, although it never completely captured my imagination in the way I had hoped, it’s still a worthy epic fantasy with layers of meaning and complexity. I’m not convinced yet that I’ll find it worthwhile to plow through thirteen more volumes of the same or greater length, but I’m open to the idea of checking out at least the next volume or two ... sometime.
January 7, 2023
· Epically Epic Buddy Read with the BBB gang ·

Friendly warning: this book is looooonnng. How short do you think my review is going to be? That's right, time to do the "get a snack, grab a drink, we're going to be here for a while" thing

Friendly warning #2 : I seem to have recently contracted Acute Acronymitis Syndrome (AAS™). So prepare for a Painful Onslaught of Acronyms (POA™)

Actual rating: 3.5 stars

Yeah Yeah yeah, I know, I knocked off half a star from my original rating. So sue me. I can't win with you people, can I? I survive unscathed after going through 750 shuddering pages of Epic/High/Whatever Fantasy (EHWF™) and yet here you are, bickering like bitter old maids over a Gloriously Insignificant half star. Well if it was that Gloriously Insignificant I probably would not have bothered knocking it off, but if I said that, you Gloriously Freaky Fantasy Freaks (GFFF™) would be on my back again so let's pretend I never said any of this, shall we? Good. Moving on.

Let's see, what should we start with? What do you want to hear about first? The good news, or the bad? Oh, you're the annoying type of people who always sees the glass half full and want to hear about the Good News first, are you? Okay, let's start with the Bad News then .



There are three main reasons why I knocked off a Gloriously Not So Insignificant Half Star (GNSIHS™) from my original rating. Bye now. Hahaha, I'm so funny I kill my little self sometimes. Oh come on, smile a little, will you? You GFFF™ (as in Gloriously Freaky Fantasy Freaks, remember? Oh please do try to pay attention once in a while) seriously need to lighten up. You should read Mermen books once in a while, I'm pretty sure it would help you get off your EHWF™ (yes yes yes, I'm talking about Epic/High/Whatever Fantasy here. What did I just say about paying attention?) high horse. Oops, am I slightly digressing here? Damn. I knew I'd forgotten to put whisky in my coffee this morning. Strange things start happening when I don't get my fix. Okay, so where were we? Oh yes, the three main reasons I did The Thing That Shall Not Be Mentioned (TTTSNBM™) :

Join the Greyish Dark Side of The Lord of the Rings. We have booze cookies:
I'm pretty sure you're going to sue me again but I don't care. I mean, this smelled so much like teen spirit LOTR that I could feel hairs growing on my feet as I was reading. A bunch of naïve Hobbits country boys leaving the Shire Two Rivers for the adventure of a lifetime, off to fight against Sauron The Dark One, led by a powerful magician Aes Sedai. Oh, what am I saying?! I must have put too much whisky in my coffee lost my mind entirely, this has absolutely nothing to do with LOTR. NOTHING whatsoever.



There is epic and there is EPIC:
Yes, I failed to see the EPIC in this. You know, EPIC as is WOW, now that was REALLY EPIC! Understand what I mean? Good, I'm glad I cleared that up for you. The fights/battles were particularly lacking here. And I really hate it when bloodshed is disappointing. It sucks big time (as in BIG TIME). Damn. Where is Glenn Cook when you need him?

Something Not So Insignicant that the GFFF™ will probably think is a Supremely Super Silly Reason (SSSR™) to knock Half an Insignificant Star off my rating, but that bothered me to no end:
Time for an Actual Spoilerish Spoilery Bit (ASSB™). Yes, I am aware that this sucks. I am not a fan of ASSBs™ myself. I am usually all about Ridiculously Meaningless Spoilerish Spoilery Bits that Have Nothing to Do with the Book Currently Being Reviewed (RMSSBHNDBCBR™ ). But it cannot be avoided. So help me God. Pretty please. Anyway, what bothered me to no end is this: So there you have it. You probably think it's stupid to focus on such a Silly, Ridiculously Not So Insignicant detail, but I can't help it. I'm annoying like that.

» Sooooooo. We are done with the Bad News. Please keep in mind that this half star I knocked off is Gloriously Not So Insignificant, meaning the above mentioned Bad News are Gloriously Not So Insignificant as well. So you can just go ahead and pretend you didn't read any of this. Tada! Your glass is still half full! Don't you love it when I pull my magic wand out of my hat?



✎ Logic being me, I have three Good News to outweigh the three Bad News. It is SO cool to be me sometimes ← I know. This has nothing to do with anything. So what? I am awesome and there is little I can do about itsarcasm alert

The Pretty Cool Clique (PCC™):

So first we have the TSTL Gang:
Don't freak out, you GFFF™! This is nothing but an affectationate expression. A term of near-endearment, if you will. More or less. Because frankly, our naïve, immature Hobbits country boys here? They have that whole Acting Stupid Act (ASA™) more than covered. So much so that I originally thought they were 15 year olds. When they are actually 20 {please insert a "kill me somebody" gif here. I'm too lazy to go and hunt for one. Thank you}. But I have to admit the TSTL Gang grew on me as the story developed. Okay, so Mat is such a whining, complaining crybaby I wanted to murder him with my bare hands most of the time. But I like Rand. Yeah, Rand is pretty cool. And I'm a total Perrin fangirl. I'd go as far as to howl at the moon for him {please insert a subtle wink wink at the GFFF™ here}.



✔ Then we have the Super Cool Chicks from I'll Kick Your Ass Land:
Have I ever read a book with so much book girlfriend material? I think not. Egwene. Nynaeve. Moraine. If that isn't an Awesome Trio from Cool Chick Land (ATCCL™), I don't know what is. Damn. This book really makes me reconsider my sexual preferences. I started having doubts with The Lady, but now the self-questioning is real. What if I've been wrong all these years? What if I'm really into Blooming Chick Boobs (BCB™) instead of Lickable Guy Abs (LGA™)? Oh well, might as well snatch the ATCCL™ away and lock them them up in the Coolest Chicks wing of my harem while I think things over. BOOM! Kidnapped!



And finally we have the Non-TSTL Gang of Big Boys (NTGBB™):
We have Lan of the ASSB™ (Actual Spoilerish Spoilery Bit, remember? Please try to pay attention once in a while, would you?). Yeah, Lan is pretty hot and mysterious. Then we have Elyas (also know as Mr arh-woooooooooooooooooooo Man). And Loial of the Shaggy Head and Tufty Ears, you sexy beast you. And no we don't have Thom because I don't like him. So sue me again. And we don't have Aram either because he's so fishy every page he was in stank. And that's it. Now you understand why I'm reconsidering my mating choices. This book is Hot Guy Harem Wasteland (HGHW™) ← are you getting sick and tired of the Acronym Shit (AS™)? Yeah, me too. Don't worry though, we're almost there. Almost

The not-too descriptive description thingy.
Remember the Lies of Lock Lamora of Sudden Death and Immediate Annihilation by Description Overload? Well this is nothing like it. Think I'd still be here if it was? No? Good thinking. No, this is nothing like LLL. Of course there are descriptions, but they don't try to murder you at every turn of the page. And they actually serve a purpose. And add something to the story. They don't leave you feeling like this:



And for 750 pages of shuddering of EHWF™ this is quite a feat, if you ask me.

The stories within the story:
So you got your basic this is not the LOTR story (off your high horse!! Off your high horse!!). But you know what is really cool about this book? The stories some of the characters tell. Moraine's tale about Manetheren? Mesmerizing. Raen talking about The Way of the Leaf? Amazing. Loial telling Rand about his people? Captivating. These tales within the tale add so much to the story. I could read them over and over again. They take you to another world, another dimension. It's like living in an alternate universe. Or something. And I think that's enough whisky for now.



What do you mean, "now what?" Don't you think that's enough? Aren't you suffering from Acute Acronymitis Allergy (AAA™) right now? Don't you have anything better to do with your lives? No? Oh COME ON, people, have mercy. I took me longer to write this review than to read the book. Don't I deserve a break? My whisky blood level is decreasing vertiginously here. I need a pit stop. Sorry? What was that? I'm free to go? Really? Wow. I feel so special right now. You know, you might be Gloriously Aggravating Freaky Fantasy Freaks (GAFFF™), but you can be pretty cool, too. Sometimes.

» So let's wrap this up, shall we?

►► And the moral of this review is: 750 shuddering pages of EHWF™ = no biggie. Bring it on, Sanderson, I'm ready to tackle The Way of Kings.



PS: a glossary of all the Freaking Amazing Acronyms (FAF™) included in this review is available upon request (at a reduced price). Send a stamped envelope and a $10,000 check to your local Murderous Crustaceans branch and you will receive a copy of the glossary by return snail mail. Lucky you.
Profile Image for Baba.
3,559 reviews849 followers
October 30, 2021
The Wheel of Time, book 1: Is there anything left to say about this 1990 debut book of the The Wheel of Time series with its extremely detailed magical-fantasy-dark-ages-esque constructed reality? Well, I guess as you're reading this, there must be! With huge shadings of Tolkien the story begins in a remote-ish village situated far from the main cities and lands of this reality. It's where we meet most of our cast of either natives from rural community, or visitors seeking those self same natives. The story sees the mixed group set on a trek, where story-wise we get to read about a fair amount of the history, structures, legends, rites and more of this world, as our protagonist push forward whilst being chased and hounded by the followers and forces of the 'Dark One'.

Back in 1990, I suppose this was a gigantic kick up the arse for the fantasy genre? It does have lots and lots of world building, but the truth in the matter is that I learned just as much, if mot more about this reality by reading the 25 page glossary at the end of the book! Unfortunately the book also really annoyed me by doing what always irks me (about magical fantasy) - frequently using magical powers to push the story on, with no real context or explanation of the rules of magic in this reality. And for the tri-fecta the whole book dragged for me, with lots of fat paragraphs and undoubtedly non essential detailed descriptions of thoughts and actions. But even magical-hating me has to conceded that this is a wonderfully detailed reality spanning not just centuries but eons is worth reading... but saying that I still think that there is probably too much world building in this book for me! Things can only get better, of that I have no doubt. I give this 800 page mammoth of a book a scraping Three Stars' 6 out of 12
Profile Image for Mayim de Vries.
577 reviews826 followers
July 8, 2021
“Always men think it a new war, but it is just the same war discovered anew.”

This wheel, once it starts rolling, rolls at a sedate pace of continental drift. But - you want to know - is it just rolling or is it eye-rolling that I have in mind. Well, for most of the time it does roll smoothly.

[Just to warn you: this is going to be a long one. But if you plan to embark on a 14-book-long journey, a lengthy review should not be a problem, right? That’s what I keep telling myself.]

Ahem.

In Two Rivers, where Rand, Mat, and Perrin grow up, life has been quiet and predictable for years of shepherding and minding your own business. However, this year is different: spring fails to arrive, wolves roam in the countryside, and the boys see a dark figure lurking in the dark. The bucolic idyll is disrupted by the waking forces of evil, and three young friends suddenly find themselves entangled in the eternal struggle of Light and Shadow.

I know what you want to shout now. Shout it anyway. I’ll wait.

Yes, yes.

The book is a Lord of the Ring ripoff and should be called the Eye of Tolkien. At least that is what the majority of those well-read and sophisticated people on Goodreads say. I prefer to think that Robert Jordan bowed respectfully (and repeatedly) in homage to the greatest of all fantasy writers (no, there’s been no contest, I just decided that was it when I was 7). Indeed, many motifs in this novel seem to duplicate the patterns set by the Lord of the Rings. Yes, I know them, all and more. But I wanted to make excuses on Mr Jordan’s behalf: It should be noted that it is difficult to find an epic fantasy series that would not build on the foundations created by Professor Tolkien.

Also, I liked the LOTR vibes and so I don’t hold it against Mr Jordan. And this is not only because I am the worshipper (though I am that, have no doubts!) but mainly because this universe and this book is not a mindless LOTR derivative. Mr Jordan heavily (and repeatedly) borrows from Tolkien but he embellishes those concepts with many of his own ideas, and I consider a huge number of them to be so well integrated with the original matrix that they could easily become alternative LOTR events and places.

Simultaneously, the further we delve into the Eye of the World, the fewer LOTR parallels there will be and more and more elements appear that make the novel unique (the Waygates!). The ingenious magic system is the most obvious of these original contributions. In general, Mr Jordan’s world is much more feminised than the Middle Earth with a more pronounced female contribution. Women’s Circle rules the men from the Village Council while Wisdoms are mistresses above them all. Magic is also the female domain. Although magic operates on the ying-yang equilibrium, the male essence (saidin) has been poisoned by the forces of darkness and males are forbidden to touch the One Power (and also preemptively hunted) while female Aes Sedai (that is to say, wannabe Gandalfs) are free to use the saidar. As you can imagine, such a lack of balance means all sorts of terrible things. Especially that this struggle between Light and Dark repeats itself in the Wheel of Time, which weaves the canopy of life into the Lace of Ages.

Now, that we have sorted the Tolkienmess Tolkienness of the book, let us move onto the cast and plotting.

Mr Jordan wisely gives us information about the world he created. We begin knowing little more than the three young country bumpkins who leave their home village for the first time. Together with them we get to know more lands, historical events and VIPs of this world. Given the complexity and span of the WoT universe, I cannot see another way of doing this. I have seen the complaints regarding “info-dumpey parts” but I’d dismiss them all as the only alternative way I see would be to write a Wheelmarillion in a reasonable hope that everybody will read it first. But those of you who actually read Silmarillion know perfectly well that this hope is anything but reasonable. To the contrary, Mr Jordan’s way of introducing readers to the world avoids overwhelming them with the magnitude of the names and facts given at once. And it is important because this book is nothing if not a primer to the whole universe. The main idea is to familiarise the reader with the new world thus providing background information has a definite priority before the series kicks in (next book, I presume?).

Having said this. This is a classic fantasy so certain things are expected, but I have a feeling that just like Mr Erikson ended up over-philosophising his Malazan, Mr Jordan is on a fast-track to descriptive overkill. There are dozens hundreds of meticulous descriptions of almost every village passed, each of the travellers encountered, buildings, objects, and costumes. On the one hand, it slows down the pacing and the development of the action, but on the other, it also has a positive effect: The world of the novel becomes more credible, complex, and engaging.

The sedate pacing of a slow-burn has one more advantage. Namely, the reader has more time to make friends with the protagonists. I was really surprised by a very modest number of POVs (only three! over so many pages!). This has a downside, as we get to know some people better than others, but I am sure this will be amended in the books to come. Moreover, initially the characters travel together, which makes it difficult to meet them as separate individuals, but at the same time gives the author the chance to pay attention to each of them, thanks to which their characteristics and internal development can be seen, and the story becomes more multidimensional. You have males, females, older, younger, human and not, connected by ties of friendship and trust and sometimes concealed dependencies, as well as some obviously forming love attachments (ah well, Captain Obvious meets Sargeant Insta). In short, plenty to chose from even for a fussy reader.

The thing that I consider to be the biggest weakness of the novel is its predictability. No, I do not mean the “come on, it’s epic fantasy!” predictable. The epic component in the WoT is top notch. We find all the most important elements of the genre: magic sword, the dark antagonist, young heroes, powerful monsters, vague prophecies, legendary creatures, battles and magical duels. What I mean is that in all this “The Wheel weaves as the Wheel wills” logic, there is a hefty dose of determinism that destroys all the fun and suspense. The pattern of the eternal struggle is repetitive, the prophecy foretells events to come, things are expected to happen, and woe is me! after 100 pages, I knew who will be a savage warrior, who will be the troublemaker, and — most importantly — from the very beginning: who is the chosen one. Unforgivable, really. If you pluck three boys from the crowd and invite the readers for the long haul, why not keep them confused until at least the end of book 1 throwing in misleading hits and ambiguous signs that could be interpreted in a variety of contradicting ways?

And then, there is chapter 40; one big exercise in convenience. To understand the enormity of it, imagine you have left your typewriter out in the rain (yes, this is a waterproof typewriter) which happened to type a love poem just by lucky accident. I wouldn’t mention this especially that many contemporary books are basically nothing but convenience, but WoT is not. The rest of the story is carefully and rationally plotted. chapter 40 with its far-reaching consequences stands out like a cheap counterfeit on sale at Christie’s.

The Eye of the World proves that Mr Jordan does not aspire does not reinvent the wheel. It is most definitely not a book for those who count on an extremely dynamic story as the dragging descriptions will be off-putting for the whole crowd of readers. It offers a fairly clichéd selection of characters and plot outline of an old-style fantasy but the story is great, a lot is going on, we meet new people and travel. So if you like bloated volumes, and in addition you are a fantasy lover, then the Eye of the World is the perfect reading for you. The unique universe, characters, and adventures that you read with pleasure, great enough that the reader would not be bored while reading or regret the time devoted to it. But above all, it simply is a good tale. A light, dynamic, yet well-toned with calmer moments and watered with a solid dose of all things epic. This is a good book, well-run, written in a way that will please both younger and adult audience.

Also in the series:

2. The Great Hunt ★★★★☆
3. The Dragon Reborn ★★★★☆
4. The Shadow Rising ★★★★☆
5. The Fires of Heaven ★★★★☆
6. Lord of Chaos ★★★☆☆
7. A Crown of Swords ★★★☆☆
8. The Path of Daggers ★★★☆☆
9. Winter's Heart ★☆☆☆☆
10. Crossroads of Twilight ★★☆☆☆
11. Knife of Dreams ★★★★☆
12. The Gathering Storm ★★★★☆
13. Towers of Midnight ★★★☆☆
14. A Memory of Light ★★★☆☆
Profile Image for Dan Schwent.
2,919 reviews10.6k followers
December 16, 2008
I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that this book was the one that put me off fantasy for years afterwards. Part of me was slightly interested in how the whole thing was going to end but it was over-ruled by the knowledge of nine books (at the time) after this one that I was going to have to push through. The story itself is such a fantasy cliche. Kid finds out he's the chosen one, has to defeat the big bad. I liked that story the first couple of times I read it. The characters are unlikeable and I sure didn't want to spend more volumes reading about them.
Profile Image for Allison.
550 reviews568 followers
May 15, 2017
It's really difficult for me to write an unbiased review of this because there's a fair bit of nostalgia involved for me. I began reading The Wheel of Time in 1995, and it was the first fantasy series that I really fell in love with. It captured my heart and held my imagination for a long, long time. I re-read the series over the years as new books were released up until Robert Jordan died - it was too heartbreaking that he wasn't able to finish it himself and I've waited until the series is finished (and the mourning period is over) to read it again.

Even on my 7th time through this 800 page tome (I know, I'm crazy), it had the power to grab me again. There is so much action, so much danger, and I love the feel it has of a world and history much larger than what we are introduced to here (even though we already get a lot!). Even knowing exactly where it was going, I still wasn't bored.

This has everything you could possibly want in a classic, epic fantasy: humble beginnings; reluctant self-discovery; prophecies; creepy, dark, evil enemies of various types; good guys with unknown motivations; a unique magic system; swords and fighting men (and women); memories and relics of old things; cities; remote places; survival on the run; a vast world with many glimpses of what is to come... I could go on and on. This, to me, is Fantasy at its best. There's not just a country or two, a city or two. There are several countries, cultures, peoples, and races that are each vividly described so that it feels like an entire world. You can get completely absorbed in it if you want to. It is so well-developed as the books progress that I almost believe I've been there. I love the feeling of being in this world, and 14 books gives me that long to soak it in.

Another thing I've always enjoyed about The Wheel of Time is that it has both male and female lead characters, and really great supporting ones as well. The female characters can be annoyingly bossy at times, but they are also often sympathetic (depending on whose point of view you're reading at the time). The women are strong, just as strong as the men, and I especially love following Egwene's story in the future out of those we meet in the first volume. I love the variety of characters, and I can never decide whose point of view I like best.

Many people are afraid to start the series because it's so long. I can see how that would be intimidating, and I'm glad I started when there were only 6 books. I believe it ended up so long mainly because the story has more than the usual one or two protagonists. 5 main characters are introduced in this book, as well as a few minor ones. With that many characters, and more to come, 14 books is what it took to play out all their paths in sufficient depth (although I will agree that some of the later books could have been less detailed). I really don't mind the length, though. I love this world. I love to have plenty of time to live in it. I don't claim that it's perfect, but I do believe it's worth some effort. Now that my memory is stirring, I can't wait to relive the rest of it again.
Profile Image for Bibi.
1,282 reviews3,270 followers
April 15, 2022
Aptly titled. Wheel of Time, as in you will never get back the time it will take you to read this 14-book (11,000 ebook pages), milquetoast, filler-filled, rip off of TLOTR.

Bottom line, friends should not let friends read WOT.
Profile Image for Sara.
198 reviews144 followers
August 6, 2020
Wauw ,🤩 I realy enjoyed this quest with rand and the crew ,I love story's where they are traveling and having a old grand adventure , I read a lot that this is compared to j.r. tolkien but I don't mind that 🤷‍♀️, My only hope is that this serie better be worth it because it is massive but we will see , for now is this realy good if you love ' high' fantasy and great world building , 4 ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Profile Image for LIsa Noell "Rocking the Chutzpah!.
579 reviews153 followers
January 5, 2022
So, this is the book, actually the series that started me on my quest for fantasy.
Robert Jordan had just died. I was at the time sick. I was offered his series for free. "Just read them. If you like them, then come back and pay me $20.00."
Yep, I came back! Then I pestered Mr. Nice for years! I read, then re-read, then did it again. I never kept a notebook, "though I should have!" What I did was keep notes in the back of all of these books.
I lived, breathed and dreamed these books.
I've read the first 6 books 14 times. Crazy? So what? I was in love with everything!
I loved Dancing with Jak-o -the shadows!
I adored watching everyone come into their own! My favorite characters at the end? All. I just love them all. I hated the deaths.
If this isn't my favorite story of all time? Well, it's probably tied in top place with a few others.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 21,053 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.