(Partial) Series Review: The Wheel of Time #1-3

December 14, 2020


In the interest of being 100% honest (as I always am on this blog), Kristin is the person who convinced me to start reading The Wheel of Time series. Her enthusiasm for the series, as well as all the introductory videos she sent me (which are really helpful for understanding the world you’re diving into), really got me excited to read it. I ended up reading the first three books in the series this year, and I have no regrets!

The series centers around three village boys from Emond’s Field: Rand, Perrin and Mat. The trio find themselves caught up in the hands of fate (which makes them ta’varen in the eyes of many people they encounter), as their choices will affect the way that this current cycle of the wheel of time will play out. There are prophecies and artifacts, allies and enemies and those in between, quests and dangers along the way, and more individuals who end up becoming a part of this epic saga.

Honestly, I was nervous to get started, but it was a pleasant surprise to discover that the writing style is not as dense as I’d expected it to be. In fact, Jordan’s writing style worked well for me! While I know that this might bother other readers (and I can’t predict if it will bother me as I continue on with the series), I didn’t mind the repetitive lines or the additional detailed descriptions all that much.

The series has the feel of a classic fantasy read, with a big ensemble cast, a richly detailed world (including terrific magic lore), and an engaging plot with familiar tropes to act as touchstones. It also happens to incorporate interesting themes, particularly in relation to fate and free will, and so many shades of morality instead of the usual good vs. evil. It comes beautifully together in Jordan’s capable hands and, as a result, fantastical though it might be, this story feels so real to the reader.

Each of the three novels was compelling. The first novel, The Eye of the World, is a solid beginning that introduces readers to this world and these characters and the saga they are to be a part of. The second novel, The Great Hunt, has our cast dealing with the fallout after the events at the end of its predecessor, while the third novel, The Dragon Reborn, expands on the cast of characters and how each of their stories is going to play a role in the overall tale. I’m genuinely happy that I impulsively decided to read all three books this year, and I’m very much looking forward to tackling the next one (or three) in 2021!

The Eye of the World was first published January 15, 1990.
The Great Hunt was first published November 15, 1990.
The Dragon Reborn was first published October 15, 1991.

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