Yep, it begins.

The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson, North American publishers of The Gathering Storm, have released the first chapter of the long awaited effort by Brandon Sanderson to fill Robert Jordan’s shoes. It’s available for free download to all members (registration is quick, easy and free), and can be found HERE.

On top of that, more news about the series was announced on Dragonmount:

The PROLOGUE to The Gathering Storm will be available as an eBook purchase beginning on September 17th. The price will be $2.99 and will be available from,,, as well as other online vendors.

Tor will be releasing the ENTIRE Wheel of Time series in various eBook formats beginning with the release of The Eye of the World beginning on October 27th. Each book will be released in series order on a monthly basis after that. The text of the books has been optimized for the ebook reading experience, and retain all illustrations and maps from the physical books. Pricing is not yet available

And that’s not all – Each of the WoT eBooks mentioned above (not the TGS prologue) will include new ‘cover art’ by different professional artists. Tor is commissioning a different artist for each book, so you’ll see brand new art for each one of the books in the series. Here are the details for the artists of the first four books:

David Grove
Illustrators Hall of Fame. Known for work in National Geographic, advertising, and movie posters including Something Wicked This Way Comes and The Outsiders.

Kekai Kotaki
Spectrum award winner.
Lead Concept Artist for ArenaNet on Guild Wars 2.

Donato Giancola
Multiple Spectrum and Hugo Award Winner, and Hamilton King award winner.

Sam Weber
Society of Illustrators and Spectrum award winner.

I dunno about releasing a prologue and making people pay for it. Maybe the proceeds could go to a Charity? Or to support Mayo Clinic, where Jordan recieved treatment through his illness? In any case, I’m sure it’ll sell bucketloads. Personally, as a junkie for cover art, I’m more excited for the new covers (especially Kekai Kotaki’s!) Can’t wait to see what other illustrators they manage to wrangle.

  • Kendall September 5, 2009 at 10:36 am

    I’m confused; chapter 1 is free, but the prologue will be $2.99?! Are WoT Prologues normally several chapters long and do they normally contain information vital to the entire book or something? (Hint: I’ve never read a WoT book. Yeah, I’m a heretic or whatever, big deal. ;-)

    This sounds very weird; I can’t imagine paying for a chapter or a prologue, even for a long-awaited book that starts the end (!) of my favorite series of all time or whatever….

  • aidan September 5, 2009 at 10:47 am

    I more or less agree, Kendall.

    Jordan’s prologues are known to be long (100+ pages?) and the prologue of The Gathering Storm was written by Jordan himself (rather than Sanderson), which may be a reason.

    On top of this, it looks like the prologues of the last three books have been released as ebooks, costing a couple of bucks, in the past, so this isn’t unprecedented.

    Still, If I were reading the book, I’d just wait a couple of weeks, rather than putting out the cash.

  • Kendall September 5, 2009 at 11:06 am

    Thanks for elaborating; that all helps explain it a lot! Though I wonder how well these things sell.

  • CupofDice September 5, 2009 at 11:17 am

    Reading right now. Thanks for bring this to my attention (first thing I saw in my google reader). The writing is a bit different from RJ (I don’t think I ever seen the word metaphor in the previous books-RJ had a quirky style that is hard for anyone else to just master), but I am enjoying it. I have no problem with the prologue costing. Milk it Tor, just make sure it tastes good.

  • CupofDice September 5, 2009 at 12:22 pm

    If I remember correctly, if you had bought Knife of Dreams before it was released, you were able to download the prologue. Maybe Tor and Amazon will do something similar this time.

  • Adam Whitehead September 6, 2009 at 5:12 am

    THE GATHERING STORM prologue is about 20,000 words, or about 7-8% of the entire book.

    And yes, it’s bit of a cheek. The system for KoD made more sense. Paying for the CoT, WH and PoD prologues cheesed off a lot of fans and I’m surprised they’ve gone back to doing it.

    With the recent news about Tor wanting more books and now this money-making maneuver, there is more than a whiff of Kevin J. Anderson starting to form about this. That said, the quality of the chapter was fairly decent.

  • Christy Pinheiro September 6, 2009 at 5:47 pm

    I’d like to list your book review website on our author’s resources page, but I can’t find your book submission guidelines. Or the best way for publishers and suthors to contact you. Do you accept self-published books and small presses? Please let me know. Your site would be listed as an author’s resource here:

    Thanks! Christy

  • JDP September 7, 2009 at 1:57 am

    $2.99 for the prologue seems needlessly money-grubbing; reading that left a bad taste in my mouth in regard to this classic series. Hopefully, as Aidan says, this will be going to charity in this case.

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