Friday, November 11, 2005

Spoiler Free Reactions - Knife of Dreams

Phew! About time! I guess it's not a good thing that the main reaction I've had to finishing this book is relief. Knife of Dreams is the 11th (!!) book in The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan. If you don't know what I'm talking about then just ignore this post, trust me. :)

OK so this book is actually quite good. I spent a few nights up till 2am, and it's been a while (maybe about 8 years!) since a Wheel of Time book was that engaging. Reading this book you get a distinct feeling that Jordan is running through a list of threads that he needs to wrap up, and he does that. Plotlines that have been dragged out for I don't know how many books are finally resolved. It's a relief, but there is a sense of anticlimax because they were built up over such a long time.

The one thing I can say for certain is that this book proves that RJ lost his way in a major way from books 7-10. Those four books could (and SHOULD) have been condensed into a single volume, with the climax being the battle at Shadar Logoth.

KoD shows some gilmpses of the old RJ brilliance, specially in Egwene's story. It took her back to the strong young leader she was before, and hopefully will continue to be. The Mat and Tuon thread was fun and reached a semi-satisfying point. The much hated Perrin-Faile threads and Elayne's Andor civil war threads are dealt with, but not withoutsome pain. I still want Faile and Elayne to die suddenly and painfully. Rand was almost non-existent in this book, coz you know, he's the main character!

The villains were boring and ineffective as usual, except for a bit to do withthe Black Tower. Semirhage's thread reached an interesting point, and if RJ introduces another twist to it I will be very pissed off. Now is not the time to complicate things even more.

Overall, I'm pretty happy with the book. It's actually re-kindled some interest inthe series, and I'm actually looking forward to the last book. Not that I think RJ can finish it off in one book without some major compromises.

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