Since 1990, when Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time® burst on the world with its first book, The Eye of the World, listeners have been anticipating the final scenes of this extraordinary saga, which has sold over 40 million copies in over 32 languages.
When Robert Jordan died in 2007, all feared that these concluding scenes would never be written. But working from notes and partials left by Jordan, established fantasy writer Brandon Sanderson stepped in to complete the masterwork. With The Gathering Storm (Book 12) and Towers of Midnight (Book 13) behind him, both of which were number-one New York Times hardcover best sellers, Sanderson now re-creates the vision that Robert Jordan left behind.
Edited by Jordan’s widow, who edited all of Jordan’s books, A Memory of Light will delight, enthrall, and deeply satisfy all of Jordan’s legions of listeners.
The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass. What was, what will be, and what is, May yet fall under the Shadow. Let the Dragon ride again on the winds of time.
©2012 The Bandersnatch Group, Inc. (P)2012 Macmillan Audio
I pasted what I had for this review in Word, and it was 4 full pages, and still not done, so I decided to shorten it...
While this series is one of my favorites, it's not one I recommend to everyone. Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series is a long journey, both wonderful and painful, that I had to listen to twice before I could truly appreciate it's coherent beauty. While most of the books I couldn't put down, a couple got quite long, and all tend to have A LOT of detail - from what people are wearing to what everyone is thinking about every facet of what they're about to do...
Robert Jordan passed away, before completing the series. Mr. Jordan's wife then made the two best decisions possible for the series, given the heartbreaking loss of her husband:
1. Ask Brandon Sanderson to complete the series
2. Do it in three books instead of one
What Brandon Sanderson did with completing Robert Jordan's series, was the work of a true master. Mr. Sanderson is not just a great writer, he truly loves this series. You can see it in his work - he knows and understands each of the characters - and is emotionally attached to them as Jordan was, and as I am. I mean no disrespect to Robert Jordan when I say that Brandon Sanderson channeling Robert Jordan is as good as, if not better, than Robert Jordan alone.
After 20+ years of marching toward the final battle, as confident as I was that Mr. Jordan had this story done right, I was honestly prepared to be at least a little disappointed, but I was not. These last three books were awesome, and I feel this part of my life (yes, I mean this series) is complete. Thanks Mr. and Mrs. Jordan, and Mr. Sanderson. Also, thanks to the narrators Kate Reading and Michael Kramer who were there for the whole series!
"The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass.
What was, what will be, and what is,
may yet fall under the Shadow.
Let the Dragon ride again on the winds of time..."
In A Memory of Light, the Wheel of Time series comes to a conclusion since its first book (The Eye of the World,1990) opened the door to Jordan's fantastic world of magic, politics, religion, savagery, and intrigue. Since that first novel, readers have passionately waited in anticipation for the next novel in the series, and then the next, passionately cheering and arguing after reading each same novel in the series. Here, the very last in this phenomenally epic saga is finally available at Audible, and the anticipation has been no less strong, the cheering and arguments no less passionate.
Think of it: This grand telling has birthed over forty million printed copies in over thirty languages. It warrants a longer and better than typical review. So, let's.
One of my favorite writers, Brandon Sanderson, respectfully took the reins from the deceased Jordan, who passed in 2007, and bravely took up the incredibly daunting task of completing what Jordan would never be able to do: Tying in Jordan's style and notes combined, take the the series to completion, and thus closing the Wheel of Time appropriately. Sanderson moved forward to do exactly that, and successfully completed both The Gathering Storm and Towers of Midnight. Each novel achieved number 1 New York Times hardcover best-seller status, and rightfully so.
Sanderson and Jordan’s widow, who edited all of Jordan’s books, have done what is almost impossible to achieve: Meet the demands of millions of fans worldwide by faithfully adhering to the author's passionate dream of breathing life and completion into this final novel, and in the telling, take us one last time on a powerfully heart wrenching journey that satisfies, thrills and moves.
Will I give away plot lines or provide spoilers?
Read my other reviews, and you know I NEVER do. However, here's I WILL tell you: This novel will stir you, excite you, satisfy you as it weaves together the final strands of this fantastic tapestry of The Wheel Of Time! Many questions will be answered, and story lines closed. Epic battles will be fought, and heroes and villains thrust to the very limits of their being. You will stay up nights, wringing your hands, cheering on your favorites, be completely surprised, you'll maybe even shed a tear or two. At the end of it all, when the last words are spoken...You'll be satisfied.
I have been an Audible listener since 2006, and have literally HUNDREDS of audiobooks in my listening library. This last novel is a RARE OCCURRENCE. Similar series facing the author's death and so much storytelling yet to be completed DIE off. They fade, and the readers left thoroughly disappointed. Not so here.
If you have loved, or even liked, the Wheel Of Time series, you owe it to yourself to buy this audiobook. Devour it, as the series has devoured millions across the globe. This Audible book is a MUST OWN. It has my very HIGHEST recommendation.
Thank you, Mr. and Mrs. Jordan, and Mr. Sanderson for an incredible journey.
And an appropriate farewell.
Proud to be a nerd
“Loial son of Arent son of Halen, had secretly always wanted to be hasty.”
As a hasty human, I listened to this book almost non-stop, narrator on 2X (3X for the slow parts) so that I could get to the end. Waiting almost 2 decades for Tarmon Gai’don made me impatient. I’ll certainly listen to it again, this time on normal speed, but wanted to jot down a few things in a spoiler-free review for my fellow impatient humans before I start over and savor it more slowly.
I feel that I should warn people that A Memory of Light is one of the most exhausting books I’ve ever read. Half-way through and I was already battle weary. Three quarters through and I felt that the whole thing was hopeless. None of the preceding books have come close to approaching the intensity of this final volume. It truly felt like the end of all things. It was glorious. It was heartbreaking. It was so many things but, like most WoT books, it wasn’t perfect.
First, a few of the good things. There are so many surprises that I never felt that I could anticipate what was going to happen next. Many threads are tied up, most in a satisfactory manner. Talmanes gets more screen time (I’ve always love Talmanes). You really get the feeling that the entire world is at war, and it’s done in a way that is believable.
The Pervara and Androl storyline almost stole the show. I just couldn’t get enough of them. I’d love to see a follow-up short story about these two in a fantasy anthology like the Legends series.
Good people die. GASP! Oh yes, while Team Jordan doesn’t exactly go about it George R.R. Martin-style, they definitely make up for lost time in weeding down the character list. Some of the deaths are meaningless, some are tide-turners and not all of them were as touching as they could have been. The death of a few of my favorite characters left me feeling oddly detached, while the death of another character had me bawling more than I did for Dumbledor.
Now for the not so good. There are a few deus ex machina contrivances that grated on me, but the worst was about Perrin. Perrin’s special abilities have never been particularly spectacular and it really feels like they got amped up so that he wouldn’t be overshadowed by the other two ta’veren boys. I’ve never been a huge fan of Perrin’s storyline once he married Faile, so maybe it’s just me.
Mat, one of my favorite characters, has deteriorated into not much more than a clown. I didn’t mind his comic relief bits so much in the last two novels, but he’s a pivotal character in this novel and has become almost a parody of Mat.
Everything Padan Fain. Sad waste of a potentially great villain. I really haven’t cared about him since he left the Whitecloaks and here it almost seemed like he was thrown in as an afterthought. I wish they would have just left him out of it. Terrible.
Another reviewer stated that some of the accents for characters have changed, and I have to agree. I’ve just spent 3 months listening to the 14 previous books and there are several minor differences in the ‘voice’ of some characters in this final novel. It was mildly distracting in the beginning, but nowhere near as the egregious differences in Roy Dotrice’s erratic narrations of the first/last Song of Ice and Fire novels.
Unlike Tolkein’s Return of the King, we don’t get a lot of wrap up. If I had to summarize the flow of the novel, it goes something like this, maneuver, maneuver, fight, fight, fight, fight, fight, reposition your troops, fight, fight, fight, fight, fight, fight, fight, fight, fight, fight, fight, fight, fight, end. Sure, it’s Tarmon Gai’don, but I guess I’m one of those people that prefer a bit more exposition about what happens afterward. These are our friends, some of whom we know better than our own family members, and I would have preferred to know more about what happens to them when the dust settles as we’ve been assured that there won’t be any sequels or prequels.
As far as my rating, I take away ½ star for pacing, ½ star for annoying plot devices, ½ star for missed opportunities, which leaves 3 ½ stars. I’ll round that up to 4 because, though it often infuriates me, The Wheel of Time is an old friend and I love it despite it’s flaws.
I like scifi and urban fantasy. I don't like romance novels. If you are the same my reviews should help.
It was good to finish something started so many years ago. Mr. Snaderson does a great job of bringing the series to a satisfying close. A lot of the fanboys may disagree, but I believe Mr. Sanderson did a better job finishing the series than Mr. Jordan would have done. Sanderson is much better at action and this book is non-stop action from page one. I believe the weakest points of the series are the elements of Mr. Jordan's that Sanderson is forced to shoe-horn in. Jordan definitely didn't have this worked out nearly as well as he said he did.
There were so many. I think I liked the part where Moiraine makes her return and saves the day.
There are so many good scenes I couldn't honestly pick one.,
that is physically impossible. This book is LONG. They could easily have made two books out of this but I am glad they did not.
The book is long and very dark in points. I had to take a lot of breaks in reading it. Sanderson did a great job and should be commended as the end of the series had been built up so big that no one could have satisfied everyone. He came as close as anyone could have, including Mr. jordan himself. The series tanked for a while but the last three books are much better than what Mr. Jordan was putting out near the end. If you made it this far in the series nothing is going to stop you from finishning anyway. The form didn't ask but the narrators are excellent as well.
I read, I write; I listen
The last book in the epic saga “The Wheel of Time has finally been written. We all know it wasn’t exactly the book Robert Jordan would have penned, that would have been impossible to duplicate, but we have to give thanks to Brandon Sanderson and the many folks that had supported Robert Jordan’s work. They have given us closure to a series that began in 1990, and for a while thought might never be completed.
Although all writers have their own style I believe Brandon Sanderson did a great job of blending his to Robert Jordan’s No one could know the Characters deepest thoughts and tendencies in the Wheel of Time better than Robert Jordan, and some of that insight was missing in the last books, but Brandon Sanderson is a very talented writer of fantasy fiction, and his painstaking effort to keep true to Robert Jordan’s vision is a homage to the late great writer.
“The Memory of Light does exactly what all of us WOT fans have been wanting; completion. It deserves five stars.
Master of None
This was a very fitting and satisfying end to a saga that was perhaps the most epic in scope since Tolkien. While the merits of Robert Jordan's style has been hotly debated, and the individual books have been received with varying enthusiasm, the importance of the series cannot be ignored.
In A Memory of Light, fast rising author Brandon Sanderson does an admirable job of pulling together the overwhelming number of plot threads that Jordan wove through his masterwork. From the Dragon Reborn himself to the shaggy pony that accompanied him in the first chapter of the first book, we learn the fates of all the characters that have intrigued us, frustrated us, drawn our sympathy, and pulled us into their lush and complex world. While the story is brought to a close, enough mystery is left to remind the reader that there are truly no endings to the Wheel of Time.
Readers Kate Reading and Michael Kramer, as always, bring life to the characters and light to the rich environs of the novel.
For fans like myself who have literally grown up along with the Wheel of Time and its cast of characters, this book is exciting, heart-rending, and satisfying, though more than a little bittersweet. I salute Brandon Sanderson for the passion and professionalism he brought to this beloved series, and I fondly extend my thanks to Mr. Rigley, whose life work has rendered him truly immortal in literature.
I found this to be a satisfying ending point to a great series. Everything was wrapped up by the end but I would have liked to see the epilogue extended out a few years to see where they all ended up. I thought Brandon Sanderson did a great job bringing Robert Jordan's vision to life. I am glad that he elected to finish out this series so that we all could see this circle completed. Michael Kramer and Kate Reading delivered a performance that you have come to expect form them.
After spending months listening to the entire series, the question naturally arises: "What now?" The answer is obvious: listen to more books by Brandon Sanderson!
The last volumes of The Wheel of Time written by Sanderson were, for me, the best. The writing remained true to Jordan's style to the extent that I wouldn't have suspected that another author was involved, if I hadn't known this before reading. But major flaws (in my opinion) in the series were missing. Jordan tended to describe in detail and name hundreds of minor characters. Some of these characters would appear much later on without explanation, so the only way to remember who they were was to look the character up on the Internet. Reading the books on a Kindle would have been easier than listening to the Audible version in these cases, because one could use the search function to find previous mentions of the character. Also, Jordan made the main female characters so obnoxious, that it was hard for me to get past the first couple of volumes. This wore off (or maybe the characters matured) in the course of the series, and in the volumes written by Sanderson the annoyance was gone. Jordan also tended to leave lots of loose ends that were never clarified. I didn't notice this happening in the volumes written by Sanderson.
There was one thing about the entire series that did put me off: Rand loving and mating with three beautiful women who were willing to share him with each other. This was more of a (male) author's dream rather than a believable story plot. This was Jordan's doing, though, and not Sanderson's.
I found the actual ending to be rather weird and less than satisfying, but that doesn't alter the enjoyment of reading the volumes written by Sanderson.
Michael Kramer and Kate Reading were, as always, excellent.
Robert Jordan’s final installment of The Wheel of Time series, written by Brand Sanderson, was released back in January. It was the culmination of his epic saga that finished with a bang, thanks to the help of Brandon Sanderson. A MEMORY OF LIGHT successfully concluded the series with tears of joy and sadness. The endings for all the characters that we have followed for years were all wrapped up nice and tight. The book was drawn together in a neat bundle with exciting plot lines, characters, and paths that took unexpected and rewarding turns throughout. A MEMORY OF LIGHT was all that I could have expected for the ending of an epic so massive that it took twenty years to finish.
"A brilliant finish to a great series"
Best Series Ever
Matt. He was the reluctant hero. He just seemed so "normal".
What an amazing series. What an amazing finish. What an amazing job Brandon Sanderson did in completing the series. Oh! Sorry, do I keep saying "amazing"? Well, believe me, that doesn't even tell the half of it. Even with a loooooong wait between books, this has kept me on the edge of my seat. I was doubtful that the last book could do justice to the rest, but I was wrong in spades. What do I do now? I am bereft! No more Wheel of Time! Oh. Well. I guess I will have to go back to the beginning and enjoy it all over again. :-)
"All great things must come to a close...."
A Wheel of Time has been one of my favourite fantasy series of all time, and when Mr Jordan died I was devastated, not only was he a great author but his wonderful story was left unfinished.
Then Brandon Sanderson steps in, a great author with series such as Mistborn and his newer Stormlight Archive to fill the emptiness and bring about a close to this brilliant series, and i have to say what a great job he has done. A Memory of Light was such a treat to listen to and Michael Kramer and Kate Reading bought the story to life for me.
I would just like to say thank you Mr Jordan for creating such brilliant characters, a wonderful world for me to explore and Brandon Sanderson for finishing it in style.
I am sad to know that this story have come to a close, but all great things must eventually end...
There was certainly no way that the final battle would go smoothly, and this book is a tempest of epic proportions. You're in for a real treat as the series comes to a close. Everybody plays their part, but is the dark one able to be defeated or has it all been for nothing.... Enjoy :D
The best book i have read or listened to in over 20 years. The only shame is that it is all over.
"Great ending to an epic saga"
Well, it is with a sad heart that I finished listening to "A memory of Light". It is hard to say goodbye to characters that you have come to know as dear friends. The last book in this series is well written with great hops between different story threads. I would say that the first half seemed a little slow/mundane - especially when compared to "The gathering storm" and "Towers of midnight" but the ending was worth it. The final battle keeps your earplugs glued in your earholes, so make sure your mp3 player is fully charged!
"An End of an Era that was well worth the wait"
This had me hooked in the first few minutes of listening to it. I have been looking forward to reading the final installment of this grand epic adventure for the past decade and it didn't fail to keep me riveted.
It was certainly an enjoyable week at work listening to the final outcomes of Rand and his friends on my phone. Well done to Brandon Sanderson for stepping into some very large shoes to fill and a big thank you to Robert Jordan for bringing this story to the world - by the blazing backside of the sightblinder himself that was good fun!
"A superb ending"
A great ending to a wonderful series of books. Having read 1-13, this was the first in the series that I listened to rather than reading. I sort of regret it - the reading's very good, but the experience was less dense than my reading of the books. I think a full listen-through from book 1 would be great, as I did with Jordan's Fire and Ice series, but swapping medium didn't work for me.
AMoL was brilliant, it was packed with darkness, betrayal, suspense, excitement and most importantly hope! :) There isn't a better word to describe the last book of the series but bittersweet! Some events did fill my eyes with tears and feelings of disbelief and other times I was laughing at the victories.
In the earlier parts of the series I found certain characters annoying and stubborn... Yet I think all the characters transformed and pulled themselves together providing a powerful force against the darkness. The addition of quite a few new characters playing important roles meant back-staging quite a few main characters, which was disappointing considering we have spent so much time listening about how important those characters were.
That being said, I think I should give my opinion on the entire series now that it is at an end. I don't think I would recommend this series to anyone, unless you have lots of time and want a very in-depth working of the characters and the world they live in. However, I think as a whole because there were many plot lines that weren't completed in the last book, it made a lot of detail provided previously very pointless. I think the 14 book series could have been reduced to 6 books and still held a very amazing story without all the additional rubbish.
It seems to me that RJ was setting up a base for other books he may have planned to write, but now those will never be written and instead you have a whole lot of random rubbish to read through to get to the good bits. If ever they make an abridged version, then I would definitely suggest it.
Narrators were great as usual!
"Good - slightly strange narrators"
The book is great, although I miss the maps that you need to go with the narrative. The narrators are slightly strange in their accents but I forgive all of that weirdness because the world of the Dragon reborn would certainly sound strange to us indeed!
"A fitting end"
This book is among the best books of the series, up there with The Dragon Reborn and The Gathering Storm. Narration is certainly very good, but not excellent. However, the combination of alternating male and female narration was a big plus, given the often wildly differing perspectives between male and female characters in this series.
The reason I only gave the book four stars is that I felt that it should have been two books - there was arguably too much content for one book. In particular, too many story arcs ended perhaps a bit too abruptly. Also, there was a big battle in the book (guess which ;-)) that wasn't properly paced, although I could really tell that Sanderson had attempted to split it up into parts with breaks in between as well as he could. Don't get me wrong, the battle is great, but at times it felt like the fighting was taking up too much of the valuable limited available space of the book.
Another way to put this is that I guess I just love the characters too much, and can't get enough of them. An implied pretty strong recommendation of a book by itself, I suppose. :-)
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