Monday, March 15, 2010

BOOK REVIEW: Lord of Chaos (Wheel of Time)

This really isn't the best way to do a review, since I'm technically reviewing book #6 of (current) twelve book series. Would have been way smarter to start at the beginning, right? Well...I am not a smart man. And since I'm trying to do book reviews on Mondays, I figured I might as well talk about the book I just read. (That's kinda' smart, huh?)

I love the Wheel of Time. I started reading it years ago, but gave up on it. When author, Robert Jordan, passed away last year, I decided I needed to do the series justice. So I started at the beginning of the series. And if you're thinking,

"Gosh, Todd, the Wheel of Time looks like one of the ridiculous nerd books about dragons and wizards and sword fights,"

You would be right. I'll tell you why I love this series so much. It's like Lord of the Rings. Only better. (Let's take a minute for other geeks to mutter at me for a second.) To me, the Wheel of Time takes the same LOTR issues like destiny and war and fantasy and makes them much more accessible.

Lord of Chaos really stands in both the chronological and literary center of the story. Characters who have been hinted about prove themselves, shades of conspiracy are brought into the light and all of this build up begins to have some momentum. The reader realizes that this thing...this battle...the conflict is about to start happening.

Jordan has done such a good job keeping the first five books fast-paced and valid even though the larger good vs. evil confrontation hasn't happened yet. After five books, though, you know these characters (also to Jordan's credit) and now you're reading in hope. You read hoping that Avienda will decide to fight once again or that Mat will get the chance to reveal why he's been protected for so long.

Lord of Chaos also dives even deeper into political intrigue. At this point in the storyline, you're now involved in what sort of power moves are being played and you're interested in how these characters are going to face them.

Of all the books so far, this one has been the slowest read. You can probably chalk that up to the fact that I know I've got six more of these to go, so what's the rush?

If you dig fantasy stuff, I think you'll like Wheel of Time. I think it's one of the strongest collections out there. Anybody else read Jordan's books? Am I the only nerd around here?


Liz said...

Actually, with the guy in the puffy shirt half open down his chest on the cover, I was thinking you'd taken to reading Harlequin romance novels. Glad to know that I was wrong.