Posts Tagged: The Wheel of Time

A Memory of Light by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson

And it came to pass in those days, as it had come before and would come again, that the Dark lay heavy on the land and weighed down the hearts of men, and the green things failed, and hope died.’ From Charal Drianaan te Calamon, The Cycle of the Dragon.

In the Field of Merrilor the rulers of the nations gather to join behind Rand al’Thor, or to stop him from his plan to break the seals on the Dark One’s prison – which may be a sign of his madness, or the last hope of humankind. Egwene, the Amyrlin Seat, leans toward the former.

In Andor, the Trollocs seize Caemlyn.

In the wolf dream, Perrin Aybara battles Slayer.

Approaching Ebou Dar, Mat Cauthon plans to visit his wife Tuon, now Fortuona, Empress of the Seanchan.

All humanity is in peril – and the outcome will be decided in Shayol Ghul itself. The Wheel is turning, and the Age is coming to its end. The Last Battle will determine the fate of the world..

Can’t really comment on the synopsis, given that I’ve only read the first seven volumes of the series, but it was written by Harriet McDougal, Jordan’s widow and Wheel of Time overlady, and will appear on both the Tor and Orbit Books editions of A Memory of Light.

The cover itself is pretty, and fitting for the title of the novel, after all the previous volumes were black. It’s simple and classic, if predictable. Good enough for me.

A Memory of Light by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson, art by Michael Whelan

It’s a little underwhelming for a Whelan cover, and, frankly, wouldn’t stand out from the crowd if not for being a Wheel of Time novel, but it’s still one of the better covers in the series. I also hold Whelan to the highest standards in the industry, so it’s not unreasonable to expect his style to be somewhat constrained trying to work inside the rules established by the previous thirteen volumes of The Wheel of Time. Compared to the art for the rest of the series, it stands out not only for its quality, but for the stylistic differences. It will never look quite right sitting against the Sweet covers, regardless of how much I love Whelan as an artist. For reference, you can see the mockup that I created using the original Darrel K. Sweet artwork. The full artwork is gorgeous: Read More »

Charles Vess' cover for The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan

So, this is amazing. I was first introduced to Charles Vess through his collaboration with Neil Gaiman on Stardust, wherein I fell immediately in love with his art. I’ve previously shown off some of this Wheel of Time sketches, but I wasn’t aware that the full-colour cover for The Eye of the World: From the Two Rivers was ever revealed. So pretty. Vess’s renditions of Rand, Perrin, Mat, and Elayne(? or a red-haired Egwene?) are as whimsical and full of character as I’ve come to expect from him. How have I not seen these before?
Read More »

Cover Art for A MEMORY OF LIGHT by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson, mocked up by Aidan Moher

Bayrd pressed the coin between his thumb and forefinger. It was thoroughly unnerving to feel the metal squish.

He removed his thumb. The hard copper now clearly bore its print, reflecting the uncertain torchlight. He felt chilled, as if he’d spent an entire night in a cold cellar.

His stomach growled. Again.

The north wind picked up, making torches sputter. Bayrd sat with his back to a large rock near the center of the warcamp. Hungry men muttered as they warmed their hands around fire pits; the rations had spoiled long ago. Other soldiers nearby began laying out all of their metal—swords, armor clasps, mail—on the ground, like linen to be dried. Perhaps they hoped that when the sun rose, it would change the material back to normal.

Bayrd rolled the once-coin into a ball between his fingers. Light preserve us, he thought. Light… He dropped the ball to the grass, then reached over and picked up the stones he’d been working with.

“I want to know what happened here, Karam,” Lord Jarid snapped at his advisor. Jarid stood nearby, in front of a table draped with maps. “I want to know where they are and how they drew so close, and I want that bloody, Darkfriend Aes Sedai queen’s head!” Jarid slammed his fist down on the table. Once, his eyes hadn’t displayed such a crazed fervor. The pressure of it all—the lost rations, the strange things in the nights—was changing him.

I didn’t expect Tor to release an excerpt from A Memory of Light, given its importances and the frothing demand for its release in early 2013, but, well, here it is. Remember when they used to charge fans $2.99 to read the prologue? This is the same excerpt read by Harriet McDougal, Jordan’s widow, at JordanCon. It’s and excerpt from the prologue, and not told through eyes of one of the main characters, though I’m sure no Wheel of Time fans are surprised by that.

What did you think of the excerpt?

I thought this was a pretty cool quote from Robert Jordan, describing the Wheel of Time:

I’ve written a few million words so far, and you want me to summarize in six? Well, here goes. Cultures clash, worlds change; cope. I know; only five. But I hate to be wordy.

- Robert Jordan, Dec, 2000

Succinct, yet grand and appropriate for the series. I wonder if the importance given to the clash of culture was something that existed when the early outlines were made (I’m talking pre-Eye of the World-trilogy-time), or if that was something that grew in the telling of the story. Also, love the small bit of humour at the end.

If you had to describe the Wheel of Time series in six-or-less words, what would you say?