Author Topic: Wheel of Time: Reading Order (New Spring and The Eye of the World Spoilers)  (Read 4367 times)

Comatose

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So, instead of listening to some fellow forum people, I read New Spring first.
I do not regret it.
First of all:  Now that so many of the books are out, I probably would not have wanted to break away from the current plot.  Who knows?  By the time I am done the series (for there are still other books I am itching to read in between, and I think I will need a break after The Eye of the World) they might all be out, and then I might not have read New Spring until after the conclusion of the final book.
Secondly: Keep in mind I am only half done The Eye of the World, but I liked New Spring better.  Now (minor spoilers ahead) I already know Rand is the Dragon Reborn from Suvudu, but it was pretty obvious I think anyways: main character, mysterious circumstances involving his birth, etc.  I'm not knocking the book, I'm just saying, Rand's the Dragon.  But I find his viewpoint incredibly boring for something.  I don't mind Perrin's, mostly because I like Egwene, but Mat and Rand just get on my nerves.
The viewpoints I look forward to the most thought?  Well at this point in the book, they're Nynaeve's, because that's when I see Lan and Moraine.  I loved both of them in New Spring, and so far the parts of The Eye of the World that I have enjoyed best are all the parts with them in it.  I think it's so cool how temestuous Moraine has become a true Aes Sedai, and how her relationship with Lan has developed.  I don't think I would have enjoyed them so much if I had not read New Spring first.  Of course, I might have enjoyed Rand more if a hadn't, but I don't think I would enjoy him anyways.
just thought I'd share my experience, and ask for your thoughts.  Please keep in mind I am only half done Eye of the World.  Right now all groups are headed to Caemlyn.
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Ereinion

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Yay, new WoT reader!

As far as reading order, I think that most people probably recommend starting the main series first because that's the way they did it. I'm glad you enjoyed New Spring.

Having said that, I think that not having read New Spring first helps you to empathize a bit more with Rand and Mat, because you're just as lost as they are. At least that's how I remember feeling the first time I read the first book 12 years ago or so.

I'm sure the characters will grow on you as they are forced to change themselves. Rand starts to grow into his role of Dragon Reborn. And Mat, well lets just say that in books 1 and 2 you only get glimpses of what becomes the greatest character that fiction has ever produced(imho). I really enjoy reading from the PoVs of all the main characters.

Keep in mind that the series is not known for the speed of plot development. But if there exists a book/series/tvshow/movie with a more complex and full plot I haven't heard of it. If  you reach any of the boring parts just plow through it and I promise you won't regret it.

Check out dragonmount.com(currently down for maintenance for a couple days) when you have time. Most of it is spoilerish but in the structured forums i believe they have subforums for the earlier books.

Inkthinker

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Mat takes a couple books to get cool. Then he becomes extremely awesome.

I'm not much of a WoT fan, but I would totally read a book with just Mat Cauthon as the main character.   ;D

Comatose

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I'll keep that in mind.  Right now he's just all pouty about his dagger from Shadar Logoth, which is obviously bad news bears, so it's just kind of frustrating me.  I'm sure I'll start liking him whenever he get's over the little phase he's having, and get rid of the stupid thing eventually.  I can just tell it's going to get him into trouble first.  I'm just thinking, "Really Mat?  Really?"  Ah well.  Plough on I shall.
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Shivertongue

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I'll keep that in mind.  Right now he's just all pouty about his dagger from Shadar Logoth, which is obviously bad news bears, so it's just kind of frustrating me.  I'm sure I'll start liking him whenever he get's over the little phase he's having, and get rid of the stupid thing eventually.  I can just tell it's going to get him into trouble first.  I'm just thinking, "Really Mat?  Really?"  Ah well.  Plough on I shall.

Yeah, Mat doesn't really grow into the awesomesauce character he is now until he gets rid of the dagger. Unfortunately, that won't happen until... I shouldn't say.

As for Egwene... I liked her a bit at first, but found her to get increasingly annoying after she learned she could channel. Rand has always been my favourite character, though, so that might have something to do with it.
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WrittenOnTheStars

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I'm on my first read-through of WoT too and I started with Eye of the World and, let's just say, after taking my time through EotW, it took me about a week before I picked up The Great Hunt and then, about half way through GH, I blasted through the rest and am now firmly set on reading them all. For me, it just took time to get used to Robert Jordan. Like all authors, you just have to familiarize yourself with the writing, the person. It's just like making a new friend. Some you're chummy-chummy with from the start, others it's more of a wariness. It was wariness with me and Jordan to begin with, but now we're best of buds and I'm trucking through his little behemoths. So, good luck to you too on your first read-through :) I'm stopping when WoK comes out and going to devour that little beasty before I return to Randland :P
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Hobbun

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Welcome to WoT!

I have not read New Spring yet, myself. And I am not sure if I should when I start my upcoming reread of the series. When it had first came out, I was going to wait for all three prequel books to be released (there were supposed to be two more after New Spring that lead up to right before EotW) and then start my reread. But now with Mr. Jordan passing away and Brandon leaning towards not writing more past finishing up the series, I might just start New Spring, anyways.

But I would still love to see the other two prequel books.

SamuelR

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Welcome to WoT!

I have not read New Spring yet, myself. And I am not sure if I should when I start my upcoming reread of the series. When it had first came out, I was going to wait for all three prequel books to be released (there were supposed to be two more after New Spring that lead up to right before EotW) and then start my reread. But now with Mr. Jordan passing away and Brandon leaning towards not writing more past finishing up the series, I might just start New Spring, anyways.

But I would still love to see the other two prequel books.


New Spring is best read after books five or six (I reccomend reading it right after five ;) ). If not, it's good to read it between Winter's Heart and Crossroads of Twilight, as a sort of pick-me-up, to excite you again.

Hobbun

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New Spring is best read after books five or six (I reccomend reading it right after five ;) ).

Any specific reasoning why it's best to read at that time?

guessingo

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The short story version of New Spring in the Legends anthology is better than the book. The book just rambles on.

Its not going to kill you reading it out of order. However, it does remove alot of tension from the first Wheel of Time book. The Eye of the World may be about the best fantasy novel ever written. If you read new spring first you take away the surprises in the book. Those surprises are what hooked me into the series.

Also New Spring is not even close to as good of a book as The Eye of the World. I don't understand how someone can like New Spring better than the Eye of the World. Finish the book. It has maybe the best ending I have ever read.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2010, 01:46:44 PM by guessingo »

Hobbun

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Well, if you are answering me (instead of the OP), I have already actually read Eye of the World and agree with your assessment of it being one of the best fantasy novels ever written.  (I've basically read up to book 8 ).

I read the short version of New Spring in the Legends anthology book but it was a long time ago and don’t remember much about it.

I was just curious from Samuel why he felt it was best to read New Spring after book 5 or 6.

I wonder how many notes Mr. Jordan left in regards to his prequel books (the two after New Spring). I am guessing not much or probably none at all as he was more concentrated on finishing the main series, which of course I agree with 100%. 

Still, I would like to see Brandon finish up the three prequel books before Eye of the World to see exactly how everything led up to beginning of the series. But from my impressions of when Brandon talked about it during the book signing I went to, it didn’t seem promising.

« Last Edit: June 29, 2010, 01:54:37 PM by Hobbun »

guessingo

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Well, if you are answering me (instead of the OP), I have already actually read Eye of the World and agree with your assessment of it being one of the best fantasy novels ever written.  (I've basically read up to book 8).

I read the short version of New Spring in the Legends anthology book but it was a long time ago and don’t remember much about it.

I was just curious from Samuel why he felt it was best to read New Spring after book 5 or 6.


I would say don't read New Spring until atleast finishing book 4. New Spring gives away alot so you lose the tesion and excitement of learning it as the series goes on. Plus, Jordan is a very subtle writer. You will miss alot of references. To be honest, I miss alot of them and I have read the series multiple times. I have to rely on the Whell of Time Encyclopedia to see them.

One other point. If you know that Rand is the dragon in the first book then that ruins the whole book for you. You think he is the guy, but you don't know until the end. Its what makes the first book so great.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2010, 01:51:50 PM by guessingo »

Hobbun

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I would say don't read New Spring until atleast finishing book 4. New Spring gives away alot so you lose the tesion and excitement of learning it as the series goes on. Plus, Jordan is a very subtle writer. You will miss alot of references. To be honest, I miss alot of them and I have read the series multiple times. I have to rely on the Whell of Time Encyclopedia to see them.

One other point. If you know that Rand is the dragon in the first book then that ruins the whole book for you. You think he is the guy, but you don't know until the end. Its what makes the first book so great.


Yes, I see your point. But like I said, I have read the beginning books already and know the ‘big’ story aspects…wait, Rand is the Dragon!?    ;)  It’s the smaller, subtle aspects I have forgotten. As you said, there is just so much information.

Comatose

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See I knew Rand was the Dragon already just through osmosis.  I don't think reading New Spring first gave that a way.  It just tells me that Moraine is looking for the Dragon Reborn, and thus, had I not known it was Rand, I would have just assumed it to be Matt, Perrin, or Rand. 
I just finished Eye of the World by the way, and the ending was admittedly very good.  Good enough to make me consider holding off on reading The Name of the Wind for a bit and read The Great Hunt instead. 
The reason I liked New Spring better (and I still do) I think had to do with channelling.  I really like the magic system, and Eye of the World just doesn't show it off very well.  It all comes across as very cliche: woman with staff shooting fireballs at people.  In New Spring, you go into the how and why of channeling.  I found the weaves of saidar to be very interesting.  In Eye of the World, Moraine is just some mystic woman who can do all kinds of wierd things with wards and magic coins and of course, fireballs.  In New Spring, you see what goes into each of those weaves.
Another little criticism I have of channeling in Eye of the World are the choices Moraine makes in battle.  She herslef tells Egwene that women are more powerful at channeling air and water, and that both can be used to just as great an effect as earth and fire, yet in battle, Moraine consistently uses earth and fire.  She uses fire a lot during her test in New Spring, but those were more specialized situations.  When she battles Meeren (sp?) at the end, they fight eachother mostly with air if I recall correctly.  Why didn't she use air or water to trap Aginor in the Eye of the World when she must have known he could manipulate earth and fire better than her even if they were close to the same power level?
just a few things that bothered me, but I really enjoyed the book, and can't wait to read the next one.  I'm sure I will enjoy them all, but so far New Spring is my favorite.
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I'm just about done with Lord of Chaos myself, and of all the endings, I liked The Great Hunt's best.  It is Epic.  Prepare for a treat.
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