Thursday, August 30, 2012
The Readthrough of Time: The Path of Daggers
Well, it took seven books, but now we're getting somewhere.
The flaw, as I've noted time and time again, is that so little seems to happen in these books. The series has, more or less, been 6 books of wandering around semi-aimlessly with limited purpose - Rand having his schizopheric attacks, the Aes Sedai being suspicious of each other constantly, and the side characters moving from place to place.
The last two books have picked things up, however, and it's a good thing. The Aes Sedai situation is becoming less suspicion and more action, which is really where Robert Jordan shines as an author. You're getting the real idea as to the importance and urgency of the situation with the Black Ajai and the White Tower, and they're acting.
The big benefit of The Path of Daggers, however, is Rand. He's becoming less petulant and more accepting of his position, he's becoming more understanding, and yet he's still frustratingly stubborn and naive. His actions in battle toward the end of the book were both predictable and stunning in their breadth and arrogance, and it made me feel for Rand as a character for the first time in thousands of pages. Really well done.
Instead of loathing the next installment, I'm anticipating it excitedly. I'll likely fall a bit behind my goal of having them mostly done in time for the final book, but at this point it's less about racing through them and more about savoring the good parts - easier to do because there are more good parts to savor for the first time since the first volume.
Available to buy at Book Depository.