Saturday, January 12, 2013

A Memory of Light

Since 1990, when Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time® burst on the world with its first book, The Eye of the World, readers have been anticipating the final scenes of this extraordinary saga, which has sold over forty million copies in over thirty languages.

When Robert Jordan died in 2007, all feared that these concluding scenes would never be written. But working from notes and partials left by Jordan, established fantasy writer Brandon Sanderson stepped in to complete the masterwork. With The Gathering Storm (Book 12) andTowers of Midnight (Book 13) behind him, both of which were # 1 New York Times hardcover bestsellers, Sanderson now re-creates the vision that Robert Jordan left behind.

Edited by Jordan’s widow, who edited all of Jordan’s books, A Memory of Light will delight, enthrall, and deeply satisfy all of Jordan’s legions of readers.

The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass.
What was, what will be, and what is,
may yet fall under the Shadow.
Let the Dragon ride again on the winds of time.   Quoted from Goodreads


It's over.   I've been reading these books for over half my life and hearing about them for even longer, and it's over. Don't worry, I won't give anything away.

You know that giddy feeling you felt when you got the last Harry Potter book, and you wanted to read it right away and save it because you knew this was the last time you would read a Harry Potter book for the first time.  Yes, you can revisit the world over and over, but this is the last time you will have unanswered questions, the last time you don't know who will live and who will die, the last time the mystery is still alive.

I should probably tell you I cried.  You go into a story like this expecting a certain number of deaths, but sometimes it isn't the person you expected that hurts the worst. Like HP's Fred.  Who expected Fred to die, and who didn't feel their heart break just a little at George's tears? Like Amanda said, there are a LOT of characters, a lot of main characters, even.  There were some I absolutely expected to die. I was prepared for it, and I was sure Brandon Sanderson/Robert Jordan would kill them off. And they didn't (which is mostly good, don't get me wrong, but also a little bit bad, though you can figure out why yourself). Then there were others I didn't expect, and that was worse.  And, of course, there was the ultimate question of Rand, but I'm not going into that.

Beyond the deaths, there were several great twists in this story. Some I didn't see coming, though in hindsight it was perfectly set up.  There were others I suspected, especially as the book moved along, but all of them were fun.

This book does have a lot of battles.  It's rather emotionally exhausting just reading them, but thrilling/nail-biting as well.  The Last Battle had a thirteen book build up, which totally justified the number of pages spent on the final battle.  Plus Brandon Sanderson switches between so many characters and different struggles that it never feels repetitive or overdrawn, and merges just the right amount of heroism with despair.  

This book was, to borrow a word, exquisite.  It tied up decades of writing and hundreds of story threads. It made me cry, grin in delight, and honestly, part of me never wanted it to end.  It is absolutely 5 stars.  5 stars for the book itself, 5 stars for the world Robert Jordan started, and 5 stars for the way Brandon Sanderson finished it off.  Yes, it is a time commitment and, yes, it is daunting, but it is absolutely worth every minute. I loved it.

1 comment:

  1. I agree (although I'm not quite done.) Love this book!!!!!