Book does a great job of tying up all the plots that have come before, can't wait for the final installment.
Began reading sci-fi 71 years ago, at age 4, will continue until my clock quits ticking.. Best education one could have ever wished for.
Without a single doubt, I consider this installment of the WOT series, the best yet. Brandon Sanderson can be very proud of his dedicated contribution, his interpretation of Robert Jordan's final outline, not merely good, but masterful, he has revitalized this epic fantasy.
Eclectic mixer of books of my youth and ones I always meant to read, but didn't.
This is one of those titles I've been wanting to listen too and, before, to read, but couldn't bring myself to making the commitment. Thirty-eight and an half hours of audio! That's daunting. However, I'm well ahead of my contract for this year, so what the hell. I am pleased (perhaps relieved is a better choice of word) I made the leap.
The book, 13th as you know in this epic series, is a good bringing together of many of the threads from previous episodes. The ta'veren fulfil their threshold quests and are paused to re-unite for the Last Battle. Mat remains the most amusing character, while Perrin grows more serious. Rand calms down and Elayne grows outward. Egwene has re-united the White Tower and there is at least one less Chosen within the weave. Min continues to intrigue as any good oracle ought to. Only Aviendha's questions have not been answered, so setting the scene for the beginning of the Last turn of the Wheel.
I found the plot in this title more adult. A couple of the middle titles were a bit on the young side and meandered unnecessarily. As one would expect as the story gets to the pointy end, the telling is a bit more direct. Also, as the main characters come to grip with their responsibilities, the issues are dramatically more engaging and more adult. There is still some embarrassing prose trying to reflect the star-crossed lovers themes that punctuate the Egwene and Elayne plot lines, but they are mercifully a very small part of this long book.
The performances are tight and well maintained. I think I preferred Michael Kramer, but this was not a big thing overall. My 12 year old daughter kept laughing at Kate Reading's male voices and I think this jaundiced my impression, unfairly. I think they collectively portrayed the narrative well, although I think I would have preferred them to take particular characters consistently. That of course is a huge ask at the best of times and, I suspect, impossible for a series of this duration.
Listening to the title has given me the confidence to listen to the last stanza instead of reading it. The title is a must for any one who has read the first dozen and a suitable reward for the perseverance.
The Towers of Midnight, aka Perrin's boring wolf dream was a nightmare. If I had not invested my time and money in the previous books, I would have never been able to finish this. The story dragged and was very dull and the narration matched the tone of the story. All in all very disappointed.
I'm a long time WOT fan but for me, like many, the series really bogged down as Jordan overwrote every book since the 5th one. RJ pursued so many story lines it made it almost impossible to follow one character or story arc effectively as a reader, and the mess he left for Brandon Sanderson to clean up is truly atrocious. How RJ expected to finish all of this off in 1 last mammoth book is beyond me. Clearly BS has a made an effort to retain the Jordan pattern of giving every single minor character anyone runs across a back story. Unfortunately that tendency was one of the things I liked least about how RJ wrote his books. Like many here I'm terribly tired of P Aybarra's constant introspection, just get over yourself already. Further I believe that Kramer's voice for him, along with the dialog, makes him seem like a petulant child and I've found myself skipping parts of his section that clearly repeat what has been said too many times before. I generally like Mat's character and it feels to me like BS has brought some new life to that story line, and some of the plot lines finally resolve themselves to clean that up. Rand's story arc and character are HUGE upgrades over RJ's last efforts and I finally find, again, that the story seems to be advancing along well with his character. Egwene's character is still far too much for me to stomach and she seems to be becoming a pivotal female character who is influencing the other female characters in the story line, such as Elayne and Nyneave who are stronger characters and much more likable in my opinion. I find myself wishing Egwene is killed off in a tragic moment to show that even the main characters can be touched by the Dark... but if that happened there would be WAY to much work to be done on the White Tower story line so I guess she has to be kept around. Avienda, one of my favorite early characters is virtually non-existant, as are most of the Aiel characters. This is clearly a necessary step, just finish already.
I have listened to this book 3 times now and love it. I would highly advise this book to any one. Though the one thing I don't think some people realize is this as well as the next book are to be the darkest and most brutal books in the series. It's the end of days approaching fast and all that stress as well as the fate of a world is on the shoulders of 3 guys.
Ok. First, I never write reviews. I personally thought this was the best of the series. I've listened to all of the WOT audio books at least twice. Brandon Sanderson has come into his own, and I look forward to anything he writes in the future. I never once during this book did I see a difference between Sanderson and Jordan. The only think bad I could say, is that I wanted more. I really didn't want it to end. Can't wait for the final book.