“The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades into myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth comes again.” (The Eye of the World, Robert Jordan)
This addictive, adventurous, epic tale is an absorbing a story as I have ever come across. It harkens to Tolkein (without his brevity) in its imagery, but is set in Jordan’s unique world. Although it might seem a ‘typical’ epic fantasy, if the word typical is even applicable to that genre, I enjoy the way Jordan subtly flips stereotypes on themselves – the color white isn’t a synonym for good, the world isn’t ruled by men, and there are no obviously trustworthy people in the whole book.
My affection for the thirteen book (and counting) saga being thus stated, I must admit that the style of the book is not my preferred one. I love a story that steps back from itself, i.e. The Once and Future King, in order to gain some perspective and add a few tidbits of psychological intrigue, and Jordan purposefully, and stubbornly, refuses to gratify me. His character’s thoughts, actions and perceptions are meticulously recorded and their country-bumpkin ideas are the reader’s only way to access the world. This allows the reader to be firmly present in the story, but also may cause some frustration as the characters engage in massive amounts of self-denial.
Beverage: The party’s prodigious intake of tea, even in the lonely black of the Ways, made me crave tea like I haven’t in years. This isn’t a book for any beverages posing as tea, such as herbal, rooibos, or ‘transitional teas’. Nor is it a place for any sugar, honey, milk, or any sort of spicy/flowery additions. This is a time for pure green tea – the grassier the better.
Reminds me of… perhaps obviously, The Lord of the Rings.