The Wheel of Time turns and Ages come and go, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth returns again. In the Third Age, an Age of Prophecy, the World and Time themselves hang in the balance. What was, what will be, and what is, may yet fall under the Shadow.
The Wheel of Time is a colossal epic fantasy series containing thirteen novels created by the late Robert Jordan, and completed at the beginning of this year by established fantasy author Brandon Sanderson. The series has gained a following of millions upon millions of fans for the past twenty-three years. Unfortunately, I had only heard of this series last year when excitement and promotion for the last volume of the series, A Memory of Light, reached its peak. When I had the chance, I bought the first six books right away. It was quite a gamble seeing as if I didn’t like the first one, I probably wouldn’t read the next five, and they would sit on my shelf collecting dust. However, opening the cover of The Eye of the World began a long journey that did not disappoint me.
Jordan describes his world with beautiful prose from the prologue to the climax. He describes the characters and their surroundings to the point that the reader feels as if they are not only in the characters’ minds, but right there beside them, traveling towards Tar Valon and taking part in their adventures. The action scenes in the novel are small, but Jordan succeeds in making these scenes as intense as full-pitched battle. I found myself gawking at the descriptions and the intensity of these scenes every time they occurred.
One of the most important things–perhaps the most important thing–to keep in mind when writing epic fantasy is to be original. Robert Jordan does well in this. Despite some similarities to J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy, he succeeds in making his world stand out, and the similarities not seem like an imitation of Tolkien’s works. The world of The Wheel of Time has plenty of its own history, and own unique qualities that readers will have a wonderful time discovering it and look forward to reading more about it and discovering that which has not yet been discovered in the next thirteen volumes.
The characters, especially Rand al’Thor and Perrin Aybara, are enthralling, and many are mysterious. Reading about them and their situations is exciting, and I cannot wait to see what journeys and struggles each of them face in the coming books.
If you are a fan of epic fantasy where the world and its history is rich and characters many, The Eye of the World is something that you will want to pick up. I am glad I did, and I am eager to continue on with the series.