Author Topic: The Gathering Storm Chapter One  (Read 8614 times)

Comfortable Madness

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #30 on: September 08, 2009, 10:36:12 PM »
I suppose I can see what you're saying and I agree...to a point. You summed up Perrin pretty acurately with "grr". Maybe that's why he started off as my favorite character but now not so much. Mat on the otherhand has definately become, far and away, the most interesting/complex character out of the group. I agree the death of Tylin kind of got shoved aside and buried but that in no way diminshes his complexity. Some of my favorite scenes are of him stumbling his way through his attempted relationship with Tuon and Aludra(for a little bit). He is steadily going from the reluctant hero to a full on hero. His steadily increasing awareness of his importance/responsibility in stopping the Dark One is IMO the best character arc in the story. As, for Rand he is conciously trying to become a "one-trick pony". He actively tries to avoid feeling anything. So, his attempt to become more emotionally wooden is well....making him wooden.
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Bookstore Guy

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #31 on: September 08, 2009, 10:58:28 PM »
Actually we agree 100% on those 3 people. Mat is the only one I care about because he is an agent of, and affected by change.
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Andrew the Great

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #32 on: September 09, 2009, 12:47:57 AM »
I don't know. I connect with Rand, too. Mostly because I feel so sorry for the poor guy, and his emotions really are quite complex. They just aren't normal. And, as Jason from Dragonmount said, they just continue to get worse. Jason's review states that there is a scene in the middle of the book where Rand hits a new low, or something like that, and that the emotions Rand is feeling at this point were among the most deeply interesting points in the book. That's all paraphrased, FYI.

Mat, I agree, is the only one of the main 3 who still has regular emotions. Perrin..... A little of his slow but deep thinking from the beginning would do much to salvage his character for me. As is, the one word the best sums up Perrin's thoughts is Faile. Hopefully, now that she's back we'll begin to see some real character development from Perrin again.

While the main 3 do seem to have slowed in how they change, they still have the opportunity for lots of character development, and they are all still changing. Just not as noticeably as before.

As a side note, there are several other, smaller characters who also have fairly good character development going on at the moment. The best example I can think of right now is Nynaeve. She's had her whole "Learn to be Aes Sedai" arc, and she's had her "be annoyed at everyone else and find out that I'm not inherently superior just because I'm Aes Sedai" arc. Now, she gets to show us some of her motivations for following Rand around, when she could leave whenever she wants, and we get to see her move slowly from being a whiny, annoying girl to being a much more dignified and controlled woman. She's becoming an Aes Sedai in truth.

We saw much the same thing with Egwene earlier. Now Egwene is developing from an Aes Sedai to the Amyrlin. I expect we'll get more character development from her in the next book that will make it very interesting. After all, she'll have some very important decisions to make, and the results of her actions will affect at least all of the Aes Sedai, if not the rest of the World. That's the kind of pressure that's been working to (at least in part) drive Rand insane.

Now, granted, there are other characters who don't change much. Elayne is a good example of this, which is, I suspect, a large part of why so many people find her so annoying. Faile and Lan are also good examples of this, though Lan may be getting some development sooner or later. Especially when he finds out that Moiraine isn't dead.

The Seanchan are getting more and more development as a whole, which tends to be very interesting as well. The more I find out about them, the more I like hearing about them.

So while character development in this series has slowed, it really hasn't stopped. At all. It's just moved to other characters who didn't get developed as much. I'm sure there are others that could be named that I haven't really been discussing.  The point is, while the huge events in the series may not be affecting the characters as much as you think they should be, they are still affecting them. Some of the main characters have seen pretty much everything, and would be hard to shake with even the largest of events. The smaller character changes are probably a result of that.

Wow. Sorry for the incoherence of that post. I've been reading Act I of Hamlet, memorizing virtually every Trig identity known to man for a quiz in Calculus tomorrow, and reading for AP Gov. My brain really isn't thinking very clearly. If you have trouble following me at some point, just ask me to clarify, and hopefully I'll be able to think by the time I reply.
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mtbikemom

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #33 on: September 09, 2009, 02:23:08 AM »
Personally, I can't stand WoT. I'm buying the next novel (from England) to support Brandon, and to review it in a professional capacity. I feel the novel is the epitome of 90's epic fantasy, but that it doesn't pull it's weight in the modern era.  I just feel there is much better work out there now than WoT, and it's not a crime to criticize a work--it gives a broader perspective to potential readers.

That is an interesting perspective to me.  Realize, though, that some of us are completely stuck in the 90's.  The 1890's.  Ha ha.

What I mean to say is that, in my selective universe of violent-but-Victorian taste in books and movies, RJ and Brandon provide a welcome departure from the stuff that is entirely too modern.  For me.  Any morphing of the two is a dream come true, so I am disposed to be very forgiving.  I don't think I'd have said anything nice if I had reviewed the stinker that was CoT in print, but I enjoyed Knife of Dreams much more than I should have, probably, and intend to embrace almost anything WoT on the horizon.  My only complaint was that I finished the chapter before I finished my bowl of soup today, but I was eating out of Brandon's hand.   = ]... 

Batchman

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #34 on: September 09, 2009, 04:29:13 AM »
My only complaint was that I finished the chapter before I finished my bowl of soup today, but I was eating out of Brandon's hand. = ]...

Didn'tthat kind of affect the flavor of the soup?

I hope Brandon washed his hands before returning to the keyboard.

Patriotic Kaz

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #35 on: September 09, 2009, 04:45:27 AM »
Steve your critism of WoT was informed and polite, Kestrel's was needless raving that i found offensive, i didn't start reading WoT until 2004 or 05 and fell in love with the series... and i do understand why people dislike the begining of the books but that problem exist also in Malazan Books of the Fallen at an even slower pace. WoT is clearly more complex than your average fantasy novel and while i think Brandon is a more skilled writer i would rather read WoT than any other series on the market. Plus my family has mental illness in every generation so it's easy for me to connect with Rand.
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Bookstore Guy

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #36 on: September 09, 2009, 05:09:37 AM »
I get that Kaz. To each his own. You had/have a reason to connect to characters in WoT that I don't have. Of course, we have discussed this before, and you know I get bored by WoT.

All of which makes me curious since Brandon said I would enjoy this one. I guess when the superior British edition comes in the mail, I'll find out. Don't worry, when I review it, I will be fair.
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JCHancey

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #37 on: September 09, 2009, 05:49:41 AM »
I concur with Caz. Compared to some other fantasy novels I've read, this one is much kinder... (heh heh) and more complex. Everyone I've spoken with has hated WoT because of it's complexity. I don't understand why they have such a hard time, I followed the story perfectly. Anyhow, I feel slightly noobish asking this, but why wait for the British edition?
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mtbikemom

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #38 on: September 09, 2009, 06:17:25 AM »
My only complaint was that I finished the chapter before I finished my bowl of soup today, but I was eating out of Brandon's hand. = ]...

Didn'tthat kind of affect the flavor of the soup?

I hope Brandon washed his hands before returning to the keyboard.

Ewwww. . . .

I mean, ha ha. 

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #39 on: September 09, 2009, 07:04:26 AM »
I concur with Caz. Compared to some other fantasy novels I've read, this one is much kinder... (heh heh) and more complex. Everyone I've spoken with has hated WoT because of it's complexity. I don't understand why they have such a hard time, I followed the story perfectly. Anyhow, I feel slightly noobish asking this, but why wait for the British edition?

Mainly so he doesn't have to have the American cover with Khan on it.
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TyranAmiros

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #40 on: September 09, 2009, 07:22:31 AM »
Quote
So while character development in this series has slowed, it really hasn't stopped. At all. It's just moved to other characters who didn't get developed as much. I'm sure there are others that could be named that I haven't really been discussing. The point is, while the huge events in the series may not be affecting the characters as much as you think they should be, they are still affecting them. Some of the main characters have seen pretty much everything, and would be hard to shake with even the largest of events. The smaller character changes are probably a result of that.


Also, the amount of time each book covers has shrunken, so while Eye of the World or Fires of Heaven cover months of times, Crown of Swords or Crossroads of Twilight only cover a couple of weeks. I don't know how much character development we might expect in Perrin, for example, over the 40 or so days he's been hunting Faile, even if that represents four books of story. I think we'll see major character development for Rand in this book, and hopefully for Egwene as well.

Anulith

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #41 on: September 09, 2009, 02:15:18 PM »
Also, the amount of time each book covers has shrunken, so while Eye of the World or Fires of Heaven cover months of times, Crown of Swords or Crossroads of Twilight only cover a couple of weeks. I don't know how much character development we might expect in Perrin, for example, over the 40 or so days he's been hunting Faile, even if that represents four books of story. I think we'll see major character development for Rand in this book, and hopefully for Egwene as well.

An excellent point and one I don't think many readers consider.  I've been rereading the series all year (I'm a slow reader, I would much rather take my time and be ensconced in the series rather than rush through it) and am currently about a third of the way into Crossroads of Twilight.  Perrin just mentioned that it had been something like 22 days since Faile had been taken.  That was a book and a half ago.  http://wot.wikia.com/wiki/1000_NE

apbadd

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #42 on: September 09, 2009, 06:05:22 PM »
Anulith - I scream Jinx.

I too have been reading WOT all year (slow reader here too) and am not about half way through COT.

Bookstore Guy

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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #43 on: September 09, 2009, 06:29:39 PM »
Oh I realize that less time has passed. I don't, however, feel that it absolves the need for character change and development. Time changes people slowly, events change them quickly. Static characters are boring to me. Obviously we can go back and forth on this for days. I also am not taking into account (as some of you are) the predicted development of characters like rand in the next book. It hasn't come out yet, and I'm not assuming it will be awesome. The jury, as they say, is still out.
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Re: The Gathering Storm Chapter One
« Reply #44 on: September 09, 2009, 08:20:43 PM »
Oh I realize that less time has passed. I don't, however, feel that it absolves the need for character change and development.

Spot on, Steve.  Time doesn't matter.  Story does.  And if a story doesn't affect a character?  Man, what's the point?

That said, I love WoT.  Though I won't be reading anything that's "pre-released".  Will wait for the actual book, and am planning an entire re-read of the series over the next two years.  Excited and hopeful.
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