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  #201  
Old 09-21-2012, 11:28 PM
The Angry Druid The Angry Druid is offline
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Well, I mostly enjoyed the Prologue, though I still admit the Mat/Talamanes scenes have been jarring to me since RJ passed on.

But the good stuff first.

1) Previously released POV with Jarid's army. Very cool scene. Great intro to how bad reality is unraveling, and how the act of creating seems to fight back. And also the continuation of the theme of how ordinary folk know it is time to fight the last battle (like in tGS prologue).

2) Isam's POV. Thought this was great. Town in the blight. Of Aiel channelers that get sent north. Many of whom are turned and file their teeth. Dreadlords in abundance. Cool scene with the tortured souls. Good insight into Isam's past.

I think Perrin will have to be the one who saves Rand from Isam. As to who the Chosen was, the description doesn't fit any of them, really. Greandal is now ugly, and Cyndane is buxom, not slim (though this is the type of error Brandon could make). And Isam would probably recognize Moggy. Of course, she could have altered her appearance, but isn't channeling so close to SG risky?

FWIW, I think Cyndane is the best fit. Graendal or Moggy seem to be under Moridin's thumb, so why would he be ordering Rand's death in secret, he'd just do it openly. Plus, coupled with the dream scene at the end of ToM, she's likely going to try to pull him into TAR and have ISAM finish him. Which is where Perrin will come in, hopefully.

3) Loved Avi's POV. Finally, a scene where everyone is acting pretty smart, and someone isn't made to look stupid. Though, if the idea that Sorilea or Bair must be a DF is true, (else how did they got the Dominion Band free when only they knew), then Bair going back to Rhuidean bodes ill.

4) Also loved Moggy's POV. Have been waiting for more from here since the scene at the Cleansing in WH where she says she won't be afraid any more. Insight into the other Forsaken was good.

I was a Taim/Moridin proponent, but certainly don't mind being wrong. Still no clue as to where Demandred is, and why must Moggy take over an army that is now unsupervised? Was Mesaana or Semirhage doing it before?

5) Also loved the BT POV from Anrdol. Wish there would have been more here. I'm assuming they could see Camelyn burning from the BT, so they are still behind, but with Brandon, who knows. Still, very good.

And the not so good.

6) Talmanes POV. Really jarring for me. I really didn't enjoy the slapstick, and haven't for 3 books now. I thought he should have 20,000 men, but all of a sudden he's down to 500 or so? And they don't think to shoot the walls (Aludra surely would have). OK with Dreamshard. Dreadbane is silly, we'd have heard it by now.

Moreover, Elayne only leaves 4 weak Kinswomen behind who can channel, when she KNOWS Caemlyn is going to be attacked? Does she think the attack will be AFTER the Last Battle? Man, that was stupid. But not that Elayne has being doing incredibly stupid stuff while RJ was writing (golly, you mean all those channelers could just link and I didn't need the Windfinders...).

Really, the whole arc around Caemlyn has been rife with so many stupid decisions (not realizing linking, only leaving 4 after knowing an attack is planned) and plot issues (not getting the timeline right with Verin/Mat or the Dreamspike's ban on channeling right) AND leaving the BT so far behind, that I'm almost ready to be done with it. Sad really, because it could have been so much better.
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  #202  
Old 09-21-2012, 11:44 PM
The Angry Druid The Angry Druid is offline
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Forgot the Leilwin POV. Thought this one was kind of clunky. Nyneave blaming her so severely seemed really off (though I'll admit, why the hell Domon didn't just throw the thing over the side immediately once the Seanchan ship was sighted has always made no sense to me at all).

And Nyneave wishing someone dead is so out of character that it just boggles the mind.
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  #203  
Old 09-21-2012, 11:47 PM
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Originally Posted by The Angry Druid View Post
3) Loved Avi's POV. Finally, a scene where everyone is acting pretty smart, and someone isn't made to look stupid. Though, if the idea that Sorilea or Bair must be a DF is true, (else how did they got the Dominion Band free when only they knew), then Bair going back to Rhuidean bodes ill.
Bair, as she reminds us, is not a channeller and could therefore not have taught anyone how to unravel Cadsuane's warding.

Unfortunately, nothing like that is even necessary. Consider:

We're told that wards are breaking down, nearly as frequently as we're told about food going bad, rats and weevils proliferating, etc.

This is like one of the worst times to be around Rand, the only worse time comes immediately thereafter. Food's going bad around him at a phenomenal rate and nobody's had good tea in weeks.

This force of entropy is certainly one of the effects of the Shadow, Rand doesn't have to be around for it to happen--wards have broken down in the Tower, food goes bad even there with the Keeping. But his presence, warped by his Shadow-induced insanity and Shadow-induced "hardness", is certainly not preventing it from happening like his post-VoG presence does.

And then we have a specific agent of the Shadow coming to visit Semirhage, one of the closest things to a direct avatar of the DO as has been named so far. If the DO can cause general entropy in the world, I have no problem believing a focused effort can undo any specific ward or corrupt any specific food storage (such as Rand being in Bandar Eban being enough to turn all the opened Sea Folk shipments). We don't need it, because wards and food can certainly go bad due to increased entropy and random chance (especially the kind of random chance that's near a strong ta'veren), but Shaidar Haran being present is simply enough to Seal The Deal.

Nope, there is no strong evidence for any of the remaining big-name WO being a secret DF.

Last edited by arioch; 09-21-2012 at 11:49 PM.
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  #204  
Old 09-22-2012, 12:04 AM
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Shaidar Haran can't just undo wards with his presence; that's dumb. Brandon said that Elza was taught weaves to undo the wards.
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  #205  
Old 09-22-2012, 12:56 AM
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Originally Posted by The Angry Druid View Post
Forgot the Leilwin POV. Thought this one was kind of clunky. Nyneave blaming her so severely seemed really off (though I'll admit, why the hell Domon didn't just throw the thing over the side immediately once the Seanchan ship was sighted has always made no sense to me at all).

And Nyneave wishing someone dead is so out of character that it just boggles the mind.
I take this as another case of a unreliable narrator, we never see Nynaeve's PoV and I seriously doubt she means it in anything other than her normal way.
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  #206  
Old 09-22-2012, 01:04 PM
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Default Where IS Vanin?

When Talmanes shouts at Dennel for a map -Prologue locations 517-528- He muses to himself that he misses Vanin.

Setting aside (for the moment) that Talmanes should have a crapton more men than he seems to have. Where did Vanin get to? It's the only reference that I've found mentioning him. He should have long been back from Tar Valon, yes? Given that Leilwin and Bayle are now at the Fields of Merrilor, what would keep Vanin in Tar Valon this long? Was he charged with taking young Olver to safety with a trusted group of Redarms? Sent to reconnoiter the BT? Because if anyone could slip into Taim's stronghold, history suggests that it would be Vanin, (though why he'd be going there I have no clue). We know that RJ and as a corollary, BS, do not merely toss names into narrative without cause, it would suggest that there is a VERY good reason why Vanin isn't with the Band. I don't have a theory on this, just curiosity and puzzlement.

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  #207  
Old 09-22-2012, 02:01 PM
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Obviously like everyone I feel there was a lot of new and exciting stuff in the prologue, and I'm still mulling a lot of it over.

However, what I found most interesting is the task with which Slayer has been assigned, and I'm starting to wonder if he might not succeed. The reason being that, with all the Arthurian links in the series, Slayer is to my mind quite a good Mordred parallel.

For the uninitiated, Mordred was the Knight who brought down the Round Table, first by exposing Guinevere and Lancelot's infidelity, then by making outright war on Camelot. In the final battle - the battle of Camlaan (Caemlyn?) - Mordred fatally wounded Arthur; in my favourite version of the story, he was himself run through by the King, and actually drew himself up the sword on which he was impaled to strike the fatal blow at Arthur (Rand).

Mordred was Arthur's nephew in many versions of the story, and in other's was his illegitimate son by his own sister Morganna (so still his nephew then ). As Luc, Slayer is Rand's uncle, reversing the positions. We're already aware of another such familial reversal with Arthurian archetypes in Artur Panedrag (Arthur) and his son Luthair (derived from King Arthur's father, Uther, also called Pendragon); this could be foreshadowing.

As Isam, Slayer remains a Mordred parallel as the cousin of Lan, himself a figure identified with both Arthur and the Fisher King. Whilst this would tend to suggest he would betray and murder Lan rather than Rand, it could also be simple foreshadow, and there's no reason at present why he couldn't do both.

Whilst Luc is, irritatingly, not actually a Damodred himself, he is related to that line via marriage - and of course familial relationships are very important to a Mordred parallel. Additionally, whilst the provenance of Isam's surname Mandragoran is obvious, it is not entirely too different from "Mordred", a coincidence RJ may have been happy to take advantage of.

As to the how: we know Tel'aran'rhiod must play a major role in the final events. We also know that Rand is both exceptionally good at warding his dreams, and somewhat unique in TAR:

Quote:
Originally Posted by BRANDON SANDERSON, Terez Interview April 17th 2011
(pause) I'm a little bit out on a limb on this one, but I don't believe he was. We have seen places where Rand manifests in Tel'aran'rhiod when he's in the real world, and this is something that happens with Rand that we haven't seen with other people...
Slayer, however, is also rather unique in TAR, and perhaps has a similar ability to be in it in the flesh at the same time as being extant in the real world. The trouble is, we don't know enough of how his powers work.

However, it is apparent that, as I've thought for a while, Slayer will play a larger role in AMOL than he has so far. If he kills Rand in TAR, might he make a resurrection more difficult? If someone else kills him in the real world, might Slayer's orders still stand? It appears that as the hand that strikes Rand down, Slayer has gone from being an outside bet to a safe on with the prologue.
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  #208  
Old 09-22-2012, 02:17 PM
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With Taim being raised to Forsaken status, does that mean that Be'lal won't be making a return ? I had hoped that he'd be back. We didn't see too much of him.

Or could Taim be Belal: Ta'lal ?
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  #209  
Old 09-22-2012, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by padfoot89 View Post
With Taim being raised to Forsaken status, does that mean that Be'lal won't be making a return ? I had hoped that he'd be back. We didn't see too much of him.

Or could Taim be Belal: Ta'lal ?
He hasn't spoken in the prologue. He and Moridin could be plotting if that's the case. It is still possible, I guess, but less likely.

I'm not sure what compelling plot point there would be for Ta'lal at this point. Currently "Taim getting Forsaken status doesn't really make him more badass, but it does increase the likelihood the other Forsaken will try to kill him" seems to be the direction things are going.
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  #210  
Old 09-22-2012, 02:39 PM
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1. His blood on the rocks of Shayol Ghul....arguments continue that this could be from Elayne's babes....but Slayer has his blood as well. Hmmm.

2. From Avis's POV
Quote:
"One night remains," Aviendha said. "It will be enough."
For conception.

3. Moggy:
Quote:
"It was a new War of the Shadow, but only she and the other Chosen knew the deeper secrets of the One Power"
Oooooh. Lots of potential here for nasty stuff!
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  #211  
Old 09-22-2012, 03:38 PM
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Originally Posted by padfoot89 View Post
With Taim being raised to Forsaken status, does that mean that Be'lal won't be making a return ? I had hoped that he'd be back. We didn't see too much of him.

Or could Taim be Belal: Ta'lal ?
Be'lal died by balefire... he won't be coming back.

Quote:
Originally Posted by neurotopia View Post
He hasn't spoken in the prologue. He and Moridin could be plotting if that's the case. It is still possible, I guess, but less likely.
Not possible, death by balefire is final.

Ta'lal will never happen, just as he renamed Graendal and told the other chosen they already knew her... he wouldnt be introducing him.

Be'lal is more toast than Sammael.
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Last edited by Ieyasu; 09-22-2012 at 03:42 PM.
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  #212  
Old 09-22-2012, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Ieyasu View Post
Be'lal died by balefire... he won't be coming back.
If Moraine's balefire wasn't strong enough the DO still could have grabbed his soul.

Moridin implied that he was dead but bad guys sometimes do this thing called "lying"
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Old 09-22-2012, 04:17 PM
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If Moraine's balefire wasn't strong enough the DO still could have grabbed his soul.

Moridin implied that he was dead but bad guys sometimes do this thing called "lying"
This. Moiraine made a show of saying how she was just strong enough to make the weave, IIRC.
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  #214  
Old 09-22-2012, 04:25 PM
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Obviously like everyone I feel there was a lot of new and exciting stuff in the prologue, and I'm still mulling a lot of it over.

However, what I found most interesting is the task with which Slayer has been assigned, and I'm starting to wonder if he might not succeed. The reason being that, with all the Arthurian links in the series, Slayer is to my mind quite a good Mordred parallel.

For the uninitiated, Mordred was the Knight who brought down the Round Table, first by exposing Guinevere and Lancelot's infidelity, then by making outright war on Camelot. In the final battle - the battle of Camlaan (Caemlyn?) - Mordred fatally wounded Arthur; in my favourite version of the story, he was himself run through by the King, and actually drew himself up the sword on which he was impaled to strike the fatal blow at Arthur (Rand).

Mordred was Arthur's nephew in many versions of the story, and in other's was his illegitimate son by his own sister Morganna (so still his nephew then ). As Luc, Slayer is Rand's uncle, reversing the positions. We're already aware of another such familial reversal with Arthurian archetypes in Artur Panedrag (Arthur) and his son Luthair (derived from King Arthur's father, Uther, also called Pendragon); this could be foreshadowing.

As Isam, Slayer remains a Mordred parallel as the cousin of Lan, himself a figure identified with both Arthur and the Fisher King. Whilst this would tend to suggest he would betray and murder Lan rather than Rand, it could also be simple foreshadow, and there's no reason at present why he couldn't do both.

Whilst Luc is, irritatingly, not actually a Damodred himself, he is related to that line via marriage - and of course familial relationships are very important to a Mordred parallel. Additionally, whilst the provenance of Isam's surname Mandragoran is obvious, it is not entirely too different from "Mordred", a coincidence RJ may have been happy to take advantage of.

As to the how: we know Tel'aran'rhiod must play a major role in the final events. We also know that Rand is both exceptionally good at warding his dreams, and somewhat unique in TAR:

Quote:
Originally Posted by BRANDON SANDERSON, Terez Interview April 17th 2011
(pause) I'm a little bit out on a limb on this one, but I don't believe he was. We have seen places where Rand manifests in Tel'aran'rhiod when he's in the real world, and this is something that happens with Rand that we haven't seen with other people...
Slayer, however, is also rather unique in TAR, and perhaps has a similar ability to be in it in the flesh at the same time as being extant in the real world. The trouble is, we don't know enough of how his powers work.

However, it is apparent that, as I've thought for a while, Slayer will play a larger role in AMOL than he has so far. If he kills Rand in TAR, might he make a resurrection more difficult? If someone else kills him in the real world, might Slayer's orders still stand? It appears that as the hand that strikes Rand down, Slayer has gone from being an outside bet to a safe one with the prologue.
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wearer of a crown of swords, spinner out of fate.
Who thinks he turns the Wheel of Time,
may learn the truth too late.

Light is held before the maw of the infinite void, and all that he is can be seized.

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  #215  
Old 09-22-2012, 04:33 PM
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Ok, I have some questions:

1. Why did the AS arrive in the town by carriage? Couldn't they just use Traveling?

2. Why would Isam expect 'this practice' to be stopped since the cleansing and how would he as 'talentless' know about it? And what practice is he referring to? Is he referring to 13x13-ing Aiel channelers?

3. Why hasn't the BA 13x13'd the entire tower? Before the Dragon's rebirth there was little standing in their way of doing that. Are there unknown costs? Can the channelers taking part die in the process or can/will the fades? Does being 13x13'd have side effects unknown so far such as loss of strength in the OP or could it decrease lifespan?

4. Why did Elayne leave only 4 kinswomen behind, none of whom were strong enough to make a gateway on their own?
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  #216  
Old 09-22-2012, 04:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Landro View Post
Ok, I have some questions:

3. Why hasn't the BA 13x13'd the entire tower? Before the Dragon's rebirth there was little standing in their way of doing that. Are there unknown costs? Can the channelers taking part die in the process or can/will the fades? Does being 13x13'd have side effects unknown so far such as loss of strength in the OP or could it decrease lifespan?
People who have been 13x13d, as we saw from Androl's section in TOM, are very obvious. You can tell something's up with them. It's a blunt instrument as a technique, so you have to be careful where you use it and who you use it on, or someone will figure it out. Using it on someone who is surrounded by willing Darkfriends is fine - for example the Black Tower. Using it on any given Aes Sedai risks setting of alarm bells. Plus, it's difficult to set up the situation - apart from anything else Myrddraal have their own purposes and needs and are difficult to hide.
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  #217  
Old 09-22-2012, 05:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Landro View Post
Ok, I have some questions:

1. Why did the AS arrive in the town by carriage? Couldn't they just use Traveling?
Couple possibilities: 1. Its not smart to channel at all that close to Shayol Ghul.
2. Perhaps a dreamspike is in place there or some other type of ward that prevents Traveling.

Quote:
2. Why would Isam expect 'this practice' to be stopped since the cleansing and how would he as 'talentless' know about it? And what practice is he referring to? Is he referring to 13x13-ing Aiel channelers?
Because he wouldn't expect the Aiel to continue to send male channelers to the Blight now that saidin is cleansed...no reason to do it at that point. He likely knows about it because he's observant and grew up in the Town so he knows what goes on there. Also, he's hunted AS so he knows quite a bit about his prey including their tricks.
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3. Why hasn't the BA 13x13'd the entire tower? Before the Dragon's rebirth there was little standing in their way of doing that. Are there unknown costs? Can the channelers taking part die in the process or can/will the fades? Does being 13x13'd have side effects unknown so far such as loss of strength in the OP or could it decrease lifespan?
Plot prevented it? Not enough of them to do it without starting a huge war? Perhaps Ishy didnt want them to completely take over but rather to corrupt it as that type of corruption breaks down societal bonds better and the Shadow has a specific timeline in place for the DO's victory?

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4. Why did Elayne leave only 4 kinswomen behind, none of whom were strong enough to make a gateway on their own?
Elayne, as nice as she is and as earnest as she is oftentimes makes mistakes...sometimes glaring ones. This is just another aspect of that part of her personality.
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Old 09-22-2012, 05:40 PM
maleshub maleshub is offline
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Originally Posted by Landro View Post
If Moraine's balefire wasn't strong enough the DO still could have grabbed his soul.

Moridin implied that he was dead but bad guys sometimes do this thing called "lying"
Moridin does say in the prologue that there are only 5 of the Chosen left. So, the DO would have resurrected any he could prior to raising Taim. I think that the other Foresaken are truly dead and gone in this age. No resurrection for them.
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Old 09-22-2012, 05:51 PM
Almen Bundt Cake Almen Bundt Cake is offline
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One of the things I wondered when reading about the Town is whether we have Too Many Bad Guys. Not in terms of supervillians, but just soldiers for the dark.

If the Town has been breeding evil Aiel for 2,000 years, they could easily outnumber the channelers for the light by a huge margin. Not only are they breeding, but they don't have the constraints of the oath rod, and thus live longer. Not to mention they probably weren't gentling all their men or losing them to madness.

We already saw Rand toast hundreds of thousands of Trollocs, so I think we can be fairly confident there are many, many more where that came from.

So I do wonder if we're gonna get a LotR-like ending, where the forces of Light just have to hang on until Rand tosses the DO into the lava.
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Old 09-22-2012, 06:03 PM
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Its a pretty safe bet that the Light will be massively, massively outnumbered regardless of whether or not the Seanchan fight with Rand's forces.

I believe RJ put it best when he said they had "a puncher's chance".
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