Sep 4 2009 11:56am

The Wheel of Time Re-read: Lord of Chaos, Part 13

Send not to know for whom the Wheel of Time Re-read posts! It posts for THEE.

Dat’s wight, wabbit: Today we cover Chapters 20-21 of Lord of Chaos, in which potential and potent plot problems are pondered and partially placated, possibly. Also, Ogier.

Previous entries are here. All posts contain spoilers for all currently published Wheel of Time novels, so if you haven’t read, don’t read.

As a scheduling note: this Monday is a holiday in the States (Labor Day), but I still intend to put up a re-read post as usual. If this changes I will post a comment in this entry to that effect.

And, yeah. The post, I give you.

Chapter 20: From the Stedding

What Happens
A servant bursts into Rand’s rooms and falls to his knees with the news that three Ogier have come to the Palace and asked to see him. Rand considers the man’s behavior, and decides it would be more appropriate to go to them instead of the other way around. Rand finds them in a courtyard surrounded by a crowd of Aiel, including Sulin and Urien. The male Ogier greets Rand and introduces them: Haman, son of Dal son of Morel, an older woman named Covril, daughter of Ella daughter of Soong, and a younger named Erith, daughter of Iva daughter of Alar; Rand remembers meeting Erith in Stedding Tsofu. He has a brief argument with Sulin over asking the Aiel to leave, in which she gets rather huffy. Haman tells Rand that this has been a “very exciting” trip Outside, what with the Shaido Aiel besieging Al’cair’rahienallen, and Rand leaving there before they could get to him.

“I cannot help feeling we have been impetuous. No. No, you speak, Covril. It is for you I left my studies, and my teaching, to go running across the world. My classes will be in riot by now.” Rand almost grinned; the way Ogier normally did things, Haman’s classes would take half a year to decide he really was gone and a year more to discuss what to do about it.

Covril turns to Rand and demands, talking very fast for an Ogier, to know what he has done with her son Loial; Rand promised the Elders of Stedding Tsofu he would look after him, and Loial is too young to be Outside, and she asks Rand to hand him over so that he may be married to Erith so she can “settle his itchy feet”. Erith adds shyly that Loial is very handsome. Rand, remembering how Loial had seemed to think getting married would be the end of his ambitions to see the world, is about to tell them he doesn’t know where Loial is, when he suddenly has a thought, and asks how long Loial has been out of the stedding. Haman and Covril both say “too long”, Haman adding his confusion over why Loial thinks anything Outside could possibly have changed that much from his books, and Erith adds that it has been more than five years, and she will not let Loial die from “being foolish”. Rand says that Loial mentioned Ogier who stayed Outside for up to ten years, but Haman tells him that of the five Ogier who stayed out that long and lived to return, three died within a year, and the other two were little more than invalids for the rest of their lives.

“The Two Rivers,” Rand said. Saving a friend’s life was not betraying him. “When I last saw him, he was setting out in good company, with friends. It’s a quiet place, the Two Rivers. Safe.” It was now, again, thanks to Perrin. “And he was well a few months ago.” Bode had said as much when the girls were telling what had happened back home.

Erith tells the other two they must start out immediately, and wilts when the older Ogier stare at her in surprise; Rand invites them to rest at the Palace, and adds that Haman can help him in the meantime. He needs to locate all the Waygates; Shadowspawn are using them, and he needs to guard them so Trollocs and Myrddraal can’t ambush them from nowhere. To himself, he wonders why none of the Forsaken have just used gateways to inundate him with Trollocs, but concentrates on what he can prevent. Haman and Covril consult, and Haman thinks this is all very hasty, but agrees. Rand immediately yells for maps; Sulin puts her head in the courtyard, and he tells her to go find all the maps in the Palace and bring them there.

She looked al him almost disparagingly—Aiel did not use maps, indeed claimed not to need them—and turned away. “Run, Far Dareis Mai!” he snapped. She looked over her shoulder at him—and ran. He wished he knew how his face looked, so he could recall it for use again.

Haman doesn’t understand why Rand is having so much trouble locating the Waygates; there is one outside every stedding, plus one in every city with an Ogier grove, like Al’cair’rahienallen. Rand reflects that the name he uses sums up the problem right there, and explains that despite what Haman might think, an awful lot can change in three thousand years among humans, and some cities that Haman knew are gone so long even their names are not remembered. Haman is incredulous that Rand doesn’t even know where all the stedding are, much less the cities, and Covril and Erith look very sad. Sulin returns with gai’shain carrying a great pile of maps, and tells Rand stiffly that they are looking for more; Rand thanks her, and that seems to make her feel a little better. Rand starts sorting through the maps.

Borders and names were enough to rank the maps by age. On the oldest, Hardan bordered Cairhien to the north; then Hardan was gone and Cairhien’s borders swept halfway to Shienar before creeping back as it became clear the Sun Throne simply could not hold on to that much land. Maredo stood between Tear and Illian, then Maredo was gone, and Tear and Illian’s borders met on the Plains of Maredo, slowly falling back for the same reasons as Cairhien’s. Caralain vanished, and Almoth, Mosara and Irenvelle, and others, sometimes absorbed by other nations, most often eventually becoming unclaimed land and wilderness. Those maps told a story of fading since Hawkwing’s empire crumbled, of humanity in slow retreat. A second Borderland map showed only Saldaea and part of Arafel, but it showed the Blightborder fifty miles farther north too. Humanity retreated, and the Shadow advanced.

Haman starts marking where all the stedding are, explaining to Rand that the Breaking folded the land in many places, which is why some stedding are only a few miles apart. He is saddened by the stedding which have been abandoned for lack of population, and even more upset by the ones swallowed in the Blight. Haman begins marking the cities, first the few that still exist, then the ones that are no longer there.

Mafal Dadaranell, Ancohima, and Londaren Cor, of course, and Manetheren. Aren Mador, Aridhol, Shaemal, Deranbar, Braem, Condaris, Hai Ecorimon, Iman... as that list grew, Rand began to see damp spots on each map when Haman was done. It took him a moment to realize that the Ogier Elder was weeping silently, letting the tears fall as he marked cities dead and forgotten.

One of them catches Rand’s attention; Haman calls it Aridhol, but Rand corrects him: it is Shadar Logoth. He asks if they would show him that Waygate if he took them there.

One thing that always makes me snort a little is the tendency in fantasy novels to name places (or things, or people) with reeeeeeally long names, and then inexplicably fail to have the populace at large assign it a nickname. Because that is what people do, you guys; you name a place El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Angeles del Río de Porciúncula, and you end up with “L.A.”. It is the way of things.

Jordan, thankfully, seems to tacitly acknowledge this. “Cairhien” from “Al’cair’rahienallen” may not be a nickname per se, but it’s close enough for government work. Not to mention about a hundred times less annoying to type. So that’s good.

We come back to one of the overarching themes of WOT in this chapter, one which we’ve gotten away from recently, that despite the progress being made in Rand’s school, the Third Age in general has been of history in decay; of a breaking down as opposed to a moving forward, a sign of the Dark One’s effect on the world. From this point of view, you can say that everything Rand is doing, not just with the school but in his campaign of conquest in general, has indirectly been a fight against this “retreat of humanity”. The people of Randland may not be having a particularly good time since Rand came on the scene, but you certainly have to admit he got them all moving.

Gateways: Is Rand’s confusion about why none of the Forsaken are moving Trollocs via Traveling our first hint that Shadowspawn cannot pass through gateways, or have we been told this already?

Either way, I have to say that’s always been slightly suspect to me from a plot convenience standpoint, because otherwise it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. Gholam not being able to use gateways I can certainly see, of course, and a reasonable case can be made for Fades because of their abilities with shadow-travel and alla that, but why can’t Trollocs use them? They’re ugly and mutated and all, but they’re still flesh-and-blood creatures who appear to have no particular inherent magical attributes that might logically prevent them touching something made with the Power, so the fact that they can’t use gateways seems rather arbitary to me. It can’t be because of their evilness, because the One Power is self-evidently neutral on the question of good vs. evil; if it weren’t, no Darkfriends would be able to channel. It seems to me, then, that the only reason Trollocs can’t use gateways is because the plot needs them not to be able to. Oh well.

Ogier culture, I’ve decided, kind of gives me hives. They’re very nice and all (at least the mainland Ogier are), but as anyone who’s ever seen me drive (or walk, or talk) can attest, I don’t understand people who aren’t in a hurry. There’s a reason I consider roller coasters to be the highest form of fun, is all I’m saying. Just GO! Sheesh.

On a less superficial level, I have a very large problem with the way we are presented with Ogier gender relations – specifically in the arena of marriage. The only thing I can figure on this score is that Jordan is making another of his gender-flipped points – highlighting the absurdity of arranged marriages by making it the men who have no choice in the matter, where historically in the real world it was women who were (and, in some places, still are) handed off to husbands like sacks of meal at market.

If so, however, I really think in this case it rather backfires, because the primary result in my view is that practically every female Ogier we’ve met comes off as a horrible bulldozing harridan – even Erith, to a certain degree – with whom no one in the reader audience can possibly be reasonably expected to sympathize, while all the male Ogier are then given license to act very put-upon and make up the most blatantly sexist proverbs in WOT (the one in this chapter was “Women do not become exhausted, they only exhaust others.”). Nice.

Not to mention, of course, that the idea of arranged marriages just completely offends me irrespective of which gender it’s being forced on. Excuse me, but fuck off. I’ll marry who I want when I want, and that should be the case for everyone. And the LAST thing I would want is someone being forced to marry me! Ugh. Ugh ugh ugh. I would be as much against this if I were Erith than as if I were Loial. Free Will is the New Sexy, y’all!

(And it only adds insult to injury that later on Loial finally does get dragged to the altar, so to speak, and he decides it’s the most awesome thing that’s ever happened to him. But I’ll rant about that when we get to it.)

Chapter 21: To Shadar Logoth

What Happens
Covril and Haman refuse Rand’s request; Covril will not lose any more time in finding Loial, and Haman says Aridhol is no place for Erith. Rand explains that they will gain time, because he will take them there via Traveling. The Ogier go off to consult, where it is clear Haman is still against it, but Covril and Erith gang up on him and wear him down; finally, Haman tells Rand they will go, and adds he will have much to say about Rand to the Stump.

Rand did not care whether Haman told the Stump he was a bully. Ogier held themselves apart from men except for repairing their old stonework, and it was unlikely they would influence any human one way or another about him.

He opens up a gateway just as Sulin, Liah, and Cassin reenter with more gai’shain carrying more maps, and Sulin gives the gateway an accusing look. Rand tells her he can protect himself better there than she can, against things that spears cannot fight. Sulin replies, all the more reason for them to be there, which Rand reflects would only make sense to an Aiel. He tells her she can bring whoever she can get to the courtyard by a count of fifty; she flashes handtalk to Jalani, who runs off, and then to the female gai’shain, who are visibly startled, but run off as well, Sulin following. Moments later the courtyard begins filling with Aiel leaping from balconies and through windows, all veiled for battle; they are confused that nothing is happening.

Quickly it became clear that she had spread the word the Car’a’carn was in danger, the only way she felt she could gather enough spears in the time allotted. A little sour grumping passed among the men, but most decided it was a fine joke, some chuckling or rattling spears on bucklers. None left, though; they looked at the gateway and settled on their haunches to see what was happening.

Rand overhears Nandera whisper to Sulin that she spoke to gai’shain as Far Dareis Mai, and Sulin replying that they will deal with it once Rand al’Thor is safe. Rand has a brief fight with the Aiel over which societies and how many of each can come, and warns them not to touch anything nor enter any building; the Aiel are impressed by the Ogiers’ fervent agreement with this. They go through to Shadar Logoth; the party is silent, looking at the ruined and deadly city.

This place frightens me, Lews Therin murmured beyond the Void. Does it not frighten you?

Rand’s breath caught. Was the voice actually addressing him? Yes, it frightens me.

There is darkness here. Blackness blacker than black. If the Dark One chose to live among men, he would choose here. Yes. He would. I must kill Demandred.

Rand blinked. Does Demandred have some connection to Shadar Logoth? To here?

I remember at last killing Ishamael. There was a sense of wonder in the voice, at a new discovery. He deserved to die. Lanfear deserved to die, too, but I am glad I was not the one to kill her.

Was it just happenstance that the voice seemed to speak to him? Was Lews Therin hearing, answering? How did I—did you kill Ishamael? Tell me how.

Death. I want the rest of death. But not here. I do not want to die here.

Rand sighed. Just happenstance. He would not want to die here either.

He tells Haman to lead on, and Haman mutters that he had not realized it would be so bad here. They walk through the city, Rand trying not to think about the memories the place calls up; he ponders Padan Fain and how Shadar Logoth had changed him, and wonders what he had been doing with Whitecloaks, until Haman tells him they have arrived at the Waygate. Covril asks that Rand not open it, and Haman volunteers to lock it, but Rand replies that it might have to be used in an emergency, and thinks his desire to cleanse them is almost as grandiose as his ambition to cleanse saidin. He weaves and then inverts a trap around the Waygate that will not affect humans, but any Shadowspawn passing through it will die slowly, so that they will be far enough from the gate not to warn others coming through with their corpses.

From the first flow he channeled, the taint seemed to pulse inside him, a slowly building vibration. It must have been the evil in Shadar Logoth itself, a resonance of evil to evil. Even in the Void he felt dizzy from those reverberations, as though the world swung beneath his feet in time to them; they made him want to vomit up everything he had ever eaten.

He finishes the trap and begins to form a gateway for them to leave, and then realizes someone is missing; the Aiel confer, and Sulin says it is Liah. Enraged, Rand shouts that he said for everyone to stay together. He fights to be calm, and tells everyone to split into pairs and search, which they do, leaving Jalani to guard Rand; Haman and Covril volunteer to search as well, but both Erith and Rand vehemently refuse. Rand thinks that his temper has gotten far too difficult to hold lately, and apologizes to the Ogier, asking that they stay with him. They search, calling for Liah and finding nothing. Finally Jalani says that she doesn’t think Liah would have gone this far, but Rand replies that he won’t leave her here. The sun is going down when Sulin and Urien find him; Sulin thinks whatever is watching them is waiting for nightfall, and Haman adds that from what he’s read, if they are here when the sun sets they will all die.

Duty is heavier than a mountain, death lighter than a feather.

Lews Therin had to have that from him—memories passed both ways across that barrier, it seemed—but it cut to the heart.

“We have to go now,” he told them. “Whether Liah is alive or dead, we—must go.” Urien and Sulin only nodded, but Erith moved closer and patted him on the shoulder with surprising gentleness for a hand that could have gripped his head.

Haman asks if he would carry them outside the city, but Rand replies he’ll go them one better, and take them directly to the Two Rivers. He makes the gateway, and looks back at the city as the Ogier and Aiel go through. Sulin hisses when she notices that he has gashed the back of his hand with his fingernails; Rand thinks that he has made a more permanent mark inside, one for each Maiden who died for him, and steps through to a field some distance from Emond’s Field. A shepherd boy notices them and runs off toward a farmhouse; Rand suggests the Ogier stay there for the night, and asks that they not tell anyone about Rand or how they got to the Two Rivers. Haman and Covril exchange glances, and agree.

Haman stroked his beard and cleared his throat. “You must not kill yourself.”

Even in the Void, Rand was startled. “What?”

“The road ahead of you,” Haman rumbled, “is long, dark, and, I very much fear, bloodstained. I also very much fear that you will take us all down that road. But you must live to reach the end of it.”

“I will,” Rand replied curtly. “Fare you well.” He tried to put some warmth into that, some feeling, but he was not sure he succeeded.

They wish him the same and head off; Rand stares for a moment in the direction of the farm where he had grown up, and turns away to Travel back to Caemlyn.

So, who wants to take bets that Rand not caring whether Haman tells the Stump he’s a bully will come back to bite him later?

Lews Therin: Well, we all know what I think this means (“I killed Ishamael” = “Rand killed Ishamael”, ha ha!), but no matter which Lews Therin theory is true, it doesn’t change how creepy it must be for the voice in your head to start actually having sort-of conversations with you.

Also, I remember it was around this point on first reading that I started wondering whether Rand’s “conversations” with Lews Therin were noticeable to other characters yet. Meaning, during the above bit, did it look like he was talking to no one? Was he standing there tilting his head or whatever for a minute, and then sighing, sort of like the way Dashiva was pretending to behave later on? ‘Cause, if so, yikes.

And yet, I can’t recall offhand anyone mentioning anything like that when we get to see Rand from someone else’s point of view, so I guess that means he must be hiding it, and hiding it well. Which has to be a lot harder to do than it might sound. I can’t speak from personal experience, of course, but I’m pretty sure if I started having chats with a disembodied voice in my head, people would frickin’ notice.

Taint: It’s obvious from Rand’s observations about the “resonance” of the taint with Shadar Logoth’s evilness that Jordan already knew at this point how Rand was eventually going to cleanse saidin. I don’t have any particular conclusion to draw from this, I just think it’s neat.

I’m also interested in the dizziness Rand feels here; it’s made pretty clear (especially in KOD) that Rand’s later dizziness problems stem from crossing the balefire streams with Moridin in ACOS (which is Bad), but then again that incident actually also happened in Shadar Logoth, so maybe there’s more of a connection there than I previously supposed.

Liah: Poor Liah. The one WOT character whose name is within shouting distance of my own, and she gets lost in Hell on Earth. And also, makes Rand a cutter. Figures.

Jokes aside: poor Rand. The first time I read this chapter I wanted to yell at him for not just going to see Tam already, but I get why he didn’t now. Doesn’t make it suck any less.

No man may be an island, but I kind of wish I were on one. An ISLAND, you perv, jeez! Have a lovely Labor Day weekend if that be your national duty, and have a lovely random weekend if it ain’t. Be nice in commentage, and see you Monday!

Christopher Sandoval
1. crsandoval
yea such an earlie reread. Thanks Leigh have a great weekend.
2. Hopper
Yes! I get to start my day off right...
Kristina Blake
3. kab1
Wow! Two early reads in a row. Thanks!

It's nice to be able to see how much knowledge and how many places are forgotten by speaking with the Ogiers. How wonderful would it be if they were in our world and we could learn more about so many ancient and lost civilaztions from them. I've always been intrigiued by them, and am looking forward to people's comments when we get more about their proposed "leaving this world" in KoD. But that's a ways off.

The taint resonance in Shadar Logath is also interesting. I think it was clear to me at the point that we would be making more returns to Shadar Logath and that it was to be a place of importance. (but I certainly didn't think he as going to cleanse the taint here) Also, this for me, is when the whole women list thing gets to be really irritating. Liah, Liah, Liah please stay with the group, Rand is already crazy enough as it it.
Josh Davis
4. YoSoyElJosh
I'm glad that quote about Ishmael is there. My friend had brought it up during a WoT Talkathon, and I thought I could quite clearly remember reading it as well, but I somehow missed taking notice of it on my reread, and began to question my memory.

Any bets on who kills Lanfear? I'm leaning on Min, only because she's the least obvious threat.

Might take Alivia's strength to match her power-to-power, though.
John Mann
5. jcmnyu
I don't think the "Rand is a bully" thing is going to come up at all. It seems that the big thing the Ogier have to decide is whether to open the Book of Translation and leave before Tarmon Gaidon or put the long handle on the axe and fight. Loial is the one who will be talking to the stump, not Haman.

The arranged marriage aspect to the Ogier is just another anvil to hit us over the head with. Yes, men and women are different. Yes, things only work well when men and women work together equally. I get it, I promise.

And now begins Terminator: The Sulin Chronicles, wherein Sulin learns to be a weak wetlander servant in long hair and livery. Laughter ensues. Really, it does. Just listen to the laugh track of Maidens in each scene.
6. tacoma
Great reread, as always, Leigh.

Just a quick question that I seem to remember there being some discussion on back on the group, but not any resolution. (of course I could be talking to the voice in my head...not that you'd notice)

Trollocs are made of human stock and just "twisted." Any consensus on whether or not they could be taught to use the OP (or have the spark so to speak)? I'm mixed on this, but kind of feel like it might be out of the question because the twisted maybe they've been genetically altered to the point that the ability can't manifest.

Ok, now I will be late for class, but it's just a class on war, so maybe thinking about one power use in battle will count.

Have a great weekend all!
Kerwin Miller
7. tamyrlink
never caught that he cut himself.

i thought it was wierd for sulin to speak to gai shain as far dareis mai, but even funnier for her to meet her toh the way she did, for as long as she did.

and i think the old names for those cities are pretty cool sounding myself. but thats just me
James Jones
8. jamesedjones
6 tacoma

I believe the discussions about trolloc channelers left us with fades being the result of that particular mutation.

Yay! Early post! :)
S Diller
9. CuenDiller
Poor Liah...I always wondered how she passed her time in Shadar Logth until she was balefired.

So how exacly is speaking to a gai'shain different then far dareiss mai? It seemed like she told the gai'shain to gather spears. How is that any different than telling them to do anything else?
10. Lsana
Interesting thought about the 3rd age being one of decay, because I never really thought it was. The Breaking was a terrible event and destroyed much of what had been in the previous age, obviously, but I never thought of the rest of it as a decline so much as a change: 3000 years is a long time, and things in Jordan's world don't stay the same any more than they do in our world. Nations rise and fall, cities are abandoned and new cities are built, a few institutions endure, but most don't.

Incidentally, that change is one of my favorite aspects of Jordan's world. It drives me nuts in other fantasy novels when I'm expected to believe that we have a world where nothing has changed for the past x millenia. Societies die and are born no less than nations, and even in a fantasy world, that should be reflected.
Anthony Pero
11. anthonypero

She used handtalk to talk to gai'shain. Gai'shain are not to be reminded of their previous lives, because it shames them. Why, I don't know, but that is how Sulin incurred toh, to a gai'shain, which I seem to remember is almost impossible to discharge, because it's so hard to incur.

edti: spelling
12. Hopper
@9 CuenDillar

It wasn't that she spoke the the gai'shain, it was that she used hand talk, treating them as if they were still maidens. Huge no no.
13. Hopper

Thunder stealer!

my only comfort comes in the fact that you misspelled edit when making an edit for spelling :)
paul Hend
14. tugthis
A little bothered by the vehemence of Leigh's disdain for arranged marriages. In my opinion the drift into selfish self indulgence of the "love match", has not on the whole been a good thing. In a society as traditional and conservative as the Ogier, it is not surprising that families still take a firm hand in charting their futures.

Which is not to say that I don't believe in love and all, just that the near 50% "no longer in love no longer married" statistic is not desirable.
Its weird that the little stuff like Rand's emotional pain manifesting physically (becoming a cutter, if you will) never gets mentioned in later books. As for Loial and Erith, trust me it could be worse. (for starts they could both be awful people). and for enders, there could be money involved. first post on any of your rereads btw.
Marcus W
16. toryx
At the risk of being overly political, I love the idea of all those miles of land being empty of humanity. It's not so cool that the reason for that is due to the Shadow pushing humanity back but whenever I read about the miles of empty land they travel through, it always strikes a chord in me. It's only rarely that I've ever experienced that in our world and even more rarely in a place that I actually want to be in (as in, not desert) but I personally love traveling through places that have been mostly untouched by humanity.

I do think that the thing about shadowspawn (especially Trollocs) being unable to travel through gateways is kind of cheap. When I first discovered that gateways could be used to kill trollocs I rolled my eyes. Lame!

Ugh, Ogier marriage customs. Definitely not an attractive culture to me.

Finally, I don't understand why Rand allowed so many of the Aiel to go with him to Shadar Logoth in the first place. He should have named no more than a handful of people and made the rest stay behind. It's the one time when I think he really IS to blame for one of the women's deaths.

And yeah, that whole business of memorizing the names and faces of the dead so he can flog himself with them later has gotten really old by now. Grow up, Rand.
Duncan Macdonald
18. DJMacdonald
Lsana @ 10

3000 years is a long time, and things in Jordan's world don't stay the same any more than they do in our world. Nations rise and fall, cities are abandoned and new cities are built, a few institutions endure, but most don't.

And this is one of the major sticking points for me. We are to suppose that Randland is our very same Earth in a different sector of the Wheel, fine. If so, then 3000 years of static non-growth (e.g. still a horse and muscle powered agrarian society, muscle powered warfare, etc.) is unbelievable. We went from that to today's high-tech world in far less time than has elapsed in the story.

Unless you are willing to posit that the Aes Sedai suppressed technology (perhaps the real reason the Red Ajah exists?), then the lack of technological progress is a very difficult suspension of disbelief to swallow.

Incidentally, that change is one of my favorite aspects of Jordan's world. It drives me nuts in other fantasy novels when I'm expected to believe that we have a world where nothing has changed for the past x millenia. Societies die and are born no less than nations, and even in a fantasy world, that should be reflected.

And likewise, technology grows, and that should be reflected as well.
Lannis .
19. Lannis
There were a couple of things about the Ogiers that really struck me during these chapters...

a) that Erith is just as suddenly smitten with Loial as Loial is with her (and in a culture where things move slowly?)... and she's quite demanding about it... and she, strangely, IMO, tells Rand that Loial's handsome? It seemed rather contrived, to me, that she would tell a stranger such a personal tidbit--Rand knows that they're to be married, but telling Rand that Loial's hot is not going to get him moving faster (maybe I'm wrong...)

And b) how utterly sad I felt reading about Elder Haman pouring over the maps looking for lost cities and landmarks, with tears running down his face--the fact that the remembrance lost touches him so deeply, and the quiet dignity with which he mourns it...

Other than that, I agree with Leigh: the Ogier rather annoy me.

Liah: Perpetually on rereads I do the "no, Liah! Come back! Don't stray from the group! Listen to directions! GEEZ, WOMAN!" like suddenly this time she'll be okay?! People on horror movies don't listen to me, either...

Thanks, Leigh! Have a great weekend! :)
Roger Powell
20. forkroot
Here are the results of the survey. As a reminder, the categories were:
A) VSO also very into WoT
B) VSO has read at least one WoT book, but only casual interest
C) VSO has not read WoT but indulges my interest
D) VSO is skeptical or hostile to WoT
E) No VSO at the moment
"Tweener" responses were also accepted (except for a tweener between D and E.)

A total of 43 posters responded. The breakdown was:

A)     2
A:B) 4
B)     6
B:C) 2
C)     9
C:D) 8
D)     4
E)     8

I'm no statistician, and I'm sure that this sample is too small to draw significant conclusions, but the responses for those with VSOs did seem weighted toward VSO tolerance and/or mild skepticism.

Thanks to all who responded.

P.S. I had said that I couldn't score an "E+", joking that maybe it was someone just starting a relationship. This didn't stop subwoofer, he went for the "D-" (scored as a "D" by me.)

subwoofer - We love ya man ... hope that "D-" wasn't a marital trouble indicator. Go and take the wife to a nice dinner and tell her your WoT buddies told you to do it! woof!
Daniel Cole
21. zaldar
You know legih if you are looking for a man to be on...*poses and preens before running to hide*
Alice Arneson
22. Wetlandernw
tugthis @14 - (BTW, have I ever said how much I enjoy your username?) I'm with you here. Granted that the application of arranging marriages has been horribly abused (and still is, in some cultures), the original idea is really quite good. If loving (as opposed to greedy) parents who know their children well are involved in the process of courtship, you have a much higher chance of a stable, loving marriage as a result. This is big on my radar, but I'll forcefully restrain myself from getting on the soapbox about it. Just have to share one excellent line resulting from this family approach: the girl, who really doesn't think much of this guy who's constantly pursuing her, finally tells him "I'm sorry, my dad says I can only marry a man, and you don't qualify." (Teehee... Maybe you had to know the people, but it still cracks me up.)

toryx @ 16 - had to look and see where you're from... Come to Montana sometime. There's a reason it's called "Big Sky Country" out there. Whether you're on the plains or in the mountains there's a whole lot of it.
Michael Johnson
23. ZshadeZ
CuenDiller @ 9... I don't know if I'm pronouncing your name the same way you do... but it definitely brought on a middle school style laugh.
Rob Munnelly
24. RobMRobM
For all the Es, keep in mind that we are happy to announce the re-read matchmaking service. State your interest in finding someone suitable and sex/age range of the preferred partner, provide your home town and see what happens. (Being open minded, non-TR types, if you are an A-D and are interested in meeting someone on the side, we won't stop you.) Rob
Alice Arneson
25. Wetlandernw
DJMacdonald @ 18 - 3000 years of static non-growth (e.g. still a horse and muscle powered agrarian society, muscle powered warfare, etc.) is unbelievable. We went from that to today's high-tech world in far less time than has elapsed in the story.

Why should it be unbelievable? Recorded human history shows far more than 3000 years of "horse and muscle powered agrarian society" before the advent of mechanically powered tools. The beginning of the "industrial age" is less than 300 years ago; the common usage of mechanical power in daily life is not much more than 100 years old; and the last 50 years have seen an incredible progress in non-muscle-powered technology. However, the (approximately) 6000 years of recorded human history before that was all "low-tech" by comparison. More or less Randland equivalent, actually.
Alice Arneson
26. Wetlandernw
Lannis @ 19 suddenly this time she'll be okay?! People on horror movies don't listen to me, either...

LOL! me too.
Rob Munnelly
27. RobMRobM
@15. Let me be the first to say "hi" (assuming I post fast enough)

@16. all that open land is why the Seanchan return will turn out to be good for Randland. Best way to solve the underpopulation problem once a truce is established between Rand and Tuon (or Mat and Rand).

@20. Thanks, fork. Fact that 1/3 of respondents with SOs are at C- and below is remarkably unsurprising given the addiction levels of the posters. Someone should start up WOTanon.

28. Sonofthunder
I love when your updates come before my lunch break. :D

Lannis @19, I do the same thing..when I was rereading this, I was yelling at Liah, "DON'T LEAVE THE GROUP, YOU FOOL!!"

I never did respond to the survey, but I'd be in the E category as well...:P
Rich Gold
29. richg25
I also agree that the gateway limitation on shadowspawn is a lame plot device. There are others. The adam is too perfect, IMHO - absolutely every possible way to escape or fight back has been taken into account. But hey, what are you gonna do - necessary for the story. I'll think of a few others too.
Brian Kaul
30. bkaul
Given Haman's admonition to Rand about his own importance and that he not kill himself, I don't think the message will be so much that he's a bully, but something along the lines of it being of utmost importance that he be assisted so that he doesn't fail. I think Rand is making false assumptions about what Haman will tell the Entmoot, er Stump, (lack of communication again, there), and also underestimating the importance and relevance of having the Ogier behind him when he focuses only on humans, but I don't think Haman will go back and poison them against him.

toryx@16: Simple: Rand had given his word to allow as many as she could gather in that amount of time to come along. He doesn't break his word.
31. Drewoftherushes
It's not so much the lack of technological advancements that bugs me...after all when you have magic,who needs technology?

The thing that kills me is how language hasn't changed one bit -- we skipped straight from the Old Tongue to the current language, which has seemingly remained static. So static, in fact, that the Aiel and Seanchan and Randlanders all understand each other perfectly.

IRL, we would barely understand someone speaking English in 1500AD, and vice-versa. The fact that three-thousand years and this language is little changed, or that the diaspora communities (Seanchan, Aiel) have been so separate and yet maintain virtually the same language, is unbelievable.
Rob Munnelly
32. RobMRobM
@31. We've discussed this at length in earlier re-reads. Bit of a flaw in the practical details of RJ's world. I accept and move on.

@19, 26, 28. LOL. "Very little sense, spear sister."

33. Freelancer
You know legih if you are looking for a man to be on...*poses and preens before running to hide*

That might have a slightly lesser chance of failure if you actually spell the lady's name correctly.


As others have said, Sulin's offense was in using Maiden handtalk; but it was the message itself, as well as the method. She had no time to have the gai'shain placidly do her bidding. She needed the urgency of a warrior. Bottom line, you don't remind gai'shain of who/what they were before putting on the white. It's shaming to them, and since they are utterly incapable of responding, you incur toh for doing so. A twisted nod back to the pacific days of their history.
36. Browncoat Jayson
On Shadowspawn Gateway Death:
My thought was the Trollocs and other Shadowspawn was that they were made using the True Power, and passing through a non-TP gateway breaks that link, which is fatal for them. Whether a TP gateway would work, we'll probably never see now that Moridin is the big head honcho of the Evil League of Evil.

On Arranged marriages:
... well, I get it. Really. In small communities, especially ones closed off to other communities of their own race, Ogier want a hand in matching. That makes those who are compatible, and who can control each other's "negative" (by that race's viewpoint) qualities, makes it understandable.

Now the same is not true of the human communities. You don't see an Ogier taverns, but our Big Damn Heros of the Wheel see a lot of them. Dancing, sporting, even festivals are a lot more common in non-Ogier communities, and you see people hooking up that way. Ogier have an organized education, the Treesong festivals, and the Stump; not a lot of places to find twu luv. So, understandable; not forgivable, but understandable.
David Gibson
37. DrG
Lannis@19 I felt the exact same way about Liah on my past couple re-reads. I wonder why it is they never listen to such good advice?

Wetlandernw@25 Completely agree with you there, I mean consider how long it would take to move from grunts to an actual cognizant language and go on from there. Then again, when it comes to the whole "placing what Age we are" thing, my brain actually starts to hurt, so I generally try to skip over it so I can focus on important wondering when I get to read more about Mat!! (Easily the most amusing character IHMO.)
Lannis .
38. Lannis
@ RobM: BAHAHAhahaha! K, I'll give it to you... ;)
S Diller
39. CuenDiller
So prompt, you guys! Thanks for clearing that up for me.
James Jones
40. jamesedjones
25 Wetlandernw

"Why should it be unbelievable? Recorded human history shows far more than 3000 years of "horse and muscle powered agrarian society" before the advent of mechanically powered tools."

For those of us skeptics, it is a matter of what drove the sudden increase in technology. If you look back at the times of little to no growth IRL, you see a period with little *available* knowledge.

Randland, on the other hand, is highly literate, and involves a wide variety of trades and industries. The losses of technology and knowledge attributed to widespread cataclysms are the only possible response, but still seems a bit weak.

But... it's fantasy, and an awesome story, and my belief has been suspended for bigger issues therin. :P
41. Lsana
@18. DJMacdonald,

As I see it, Randland is more or less our world in about the 1600s or so: printing press, reasonable-sized cities, a mobile merchant class, enough travel that people are familiar with other parts of the world even if they don't go there themselves. If we subtract 3000 years, that would put the start of the age in about 1400 BC, which, if I remember my history correctly, would be the Minoan era of Greek civilization. Not an unreasonable place for the Third Age to start, especially given how much of the previous Age's technology depended on channeling.

I do think, though, that the Aes Sedai should have managed to get further than they did. I have a hard time swallowing the idea that in 3000 years no one in the White Tower managed to figure out how to build an *angreal until Elayne came along and figured it out in 2 seconds flat.

@31. Drewoftherushes,

Two points:

First, the "they have magic, why would they need technology" argument doesn't really work; the Aes Sedai aren't exactly hanging around doing people's menial work for them. As I recall, the place where technology really got started was in the textile industry, and that could be just as true in Randland--unless there is a Mauve Ajah devoted to using the One Power to spin thread and weave it into cloth.

Secondly, yeah, the language bothers me too. If there has been significant enough drift that the Old Tongue evolved into what they speak today, then there should have been enough drift that every land had a different language. You can't really have it both ways: either the presence of literacy managed to avoid the language drift, or languages evolved differently in different places. The whole "the Old Tongue changed into the New like magic" doesn't really work.

But Jordan did well enough in some other areas that I'm willing to ignore that.
Captain Hammer
42. Randalator
I wonder if anyone ever asked RJ if the crossing the streams thing was a nod to Ghostbusters...

Drewoftherushes @31

As RobMRobM said, that's been discussed earlier. Basically it's the state of language that had exactely one starting point (Old Tongue) and 3000 years of development without any influence from the outside. The outcome is a fairly homogenous language with a handful of dialects.

You can't compare Old Tongue vs. New Tongue with our languages. Modern English has had numerous influences from completely different languages over the centuries. A Germanic origin with Skandinavian, Latin, Celtic and French/Norman influences. Where are those influences in Randland?

And we didn't skip straight to the "New Tongue". That was a long (and probably painful) process that we didn't get to see because of RJ's courtesy to provide us with a translation to modern day English. But the Old Tongue has come a very long way. Most likely no Randlander would understand the Hawkwing-ian language without the creator playing interpreter... ;-)
Jane Smyth
43. Kaboom
I am quite OK with ignoring the language thing.
With all the communication problems that already exist in the story, I don't even want to imagine how bad it would be if in addition people wouldn't speak the same language.
44. Herr_Flick
About Liah.

I allways wondered why on earth she stayed in Shadar Logoth.
Kristina Blake
45. kab1
I do think the Seanchan should speak quite a different language. Did Hawkwing speak the old tongue or the new tongue, or something in between?

However, I'm willing to suspend disbelief over the language bit as well. I think Kaboom @43 puts it well. They have enough communication problems already!
Rob Munnelly
46. RobMRobM
More from Brandon Sanderson's website. Interesting stuff.

Summer Is Over
Posted on 09.02.09Categories: The Writing Process A Memory of Light Signings/tours The Way of Kings Alcatraz 4 The Gathering Storm Wheel of Time Book 13September first has come (well, and passed, by now) and I'm pleased to say that I met my goals. If you were reading the blog a few months back, you might remember when I explained that I needed to divert a lot of attention this summer achieving a couple of goals. The rewrite of THE WAY OF KINGS and the first draft of the fourth Alcatraz book. I not only had contracts to fulfill, but I needed a break.

Well, ALCATRAZ VERSUS THE SHATTERED LENS is finished as of August 31st. There's some revising to do, but that can happen on the back-burner as focus shifts back to The Wheel of Time. The break has been good for me; doing something different, as I've often said, refreshes me and helps me get work done. Just like the first Alcatraz book was something I needed to do to distract me between Mistborn books, work on this one has helped me take a breath and step back from the Wheel of Time (which had been dominating my life for fifteen or sixteen months.)

It's time to move onward, however. I'm still waiting for a few bits of material from Charleston that I asked for, but that's all right since I think the thing I need to do now is re-read all of KNIFE OF DREAMS, and maybe spots of some previous books. I don't have the three months to dedicate to re-reading the entire series again, though I'm going to take the audiobooks on tour for plane rides.

Anyway, I like to be very up-front with readers about what is going on. Waiting for novels can get frustrating because of how long the process takes, and because . . . well, it's an artistic endeavor that relies on the creative output of (usually) a single person. We artists can be flakey.

Or, put more appropriately, the artistic and creative process can be erratic. I don't think George R. R. Martin is flakey, for instance. An artist has to know their process, and work within its bounds. It takes him years to write a book; that's just how it goes. That's pretty good, considering the genius of his prose. If he wants quality, he has to have the freedom to work as he needs to. Writing books is not like building widgets. Forcing it doesn't work.

Coaxing it, however, can be effective. For me, taking a break to do something different—like the Alcatraz books—has proven essential. I don't think it slows down my other books; in fact, it speeds them up, as it keeps my creative process working. Other writers call me prolific. That's only because my diversions (Like Warbreaker or Alcatraz) have so far been successful as publishable projects, where taking four months off to go golfing wouldn't be. But, that's a tangent.

Anyway, I don't think forcing the process can work. However, I think being open about what is happening with readers—giving them transparency and a concrete view on what I'm doing—can be very helpful. When I take a diversion, you'll know what I'm doing, and the progress bars (hopefully) will show you exactly what I'm doing an when.

For now, AMOL 2 (we'll see what it ends up being named; I've chosen what I like for the title, but the final decision isn't mine) stands at having about two hundred thousand words written. There is about 100k left to go. (A little over that.) My goal is to have that done by January 1st, to put us in the same place next year as we were this year for having a book ready by the fall.

The caveat for all of this, however, is what I mentioned above. It can't be forced, only coaxed. I won't release a WoT book just to be releasing a WoT book. This is the end of the greatest epic fantasy series of my generation. It needs to be treated very carefully. If I have to take more time on it, I will—regardless of the screaming from publisher or readers. But I don't anticipate that happening. It looks good so far.

A few points of news. The Gathering Storm tour is up on Dragonmount; I'll have it up here on my website soon. I didn't choose the cities, but I'm trying hard to get to places I haven't been before. I do plan to do a Canadian tour next year sometime, though I'm not certain about Europe. (I really want to get to Germany and the UK, at least, but my own books don't launch in the UK until this fall.)

Also, if you're waiting for news about THE WAY OF KINGS, you'll have to sit tight for a little while. I'll start posting and talking about that more come January. Right now, I think the focus needs to be on The Gathering Storm, and not on my own projects.

And now, back to doing a little editing.
Jane Smyth
47. Kaboom
I think Hawkwing spoke the new tongue. I remember reading somewhere that it already existed in the AOL, but as a "slang" type of language that the less educated people spoke.
However I do not remember where I read that.
48. lurker
@29 - re: a'dam too perfect
I had one problem with Egwene's Adam Adventures - she eventually finds the method of opening the a'dam but her fingers don't work if she thinks of opening the thing. She also learns that she has to "convince" herself the water pitcher is not a weapon before she can hold it. (ie learns that the a'dam responds to how you think of things, not how they are).

1) why not convince yourself this catch won't open the a'dam and click it?
2) how do you know how to open an a'dam if you've never opened one? (Sounds odd, but I know turning a door knob will open a door from experience... but consider trying to remove the ring from those "twisted metal puzzles"; until you succeed you have no idea how to do it.)

Bottom line: to me the only Egwene could know how to open the a'dam is to have opened it.
Maiane Bakroeva
49. Isilel
Re: Shadowspawn being unable to Travel, it is a logical development given that Travelling was changed from a relatively rare Talent that only allowed a person to move themselves to dimensional gates that any OP user or a circle can make.
How would it have been possible to "hold territory" in the War of Power if Shadowspawn could be teleported everywhere?

Even as is Myrdraal shadow-riding ability makes me ask myself why the Borderlands still exist. After all, one can't achieve shadowless light in whole settlements or even whole buildings with oil lamps/torches and it would only take a commando force of Myrdraal to decapitate Borderland government and military.
For that matter, the same is true for all Randland rulers now that TG looms - even channelers can be taken out by warded Shadowspawn.

Rand continues to be annoying about the whole bodyguard thing - it still doesn't occur to him that if he'd just let a few people do their jobs as bodyguards, everybody would be much safer- including themselves.

Re: humanity retreating and lack of technological progress - it is Ishy's work. Things were flourishing during the Second Convenant, but he smashed humans back to basics with the Trolloc Wars. Ditto during Hawkwing's time. Etc.

And Ogier marriage customs reminded me about the issue I wanted to discuss in the previous installment, namely:

In truth, Aes Sedai almost never married. Rare was the man who wanted to marry a woman who, with the Power, could handle him like a child if she chose.

And which I absolutely don't get. I mean, men become Warders, right? Which already includes nearly all the constraints of marriage and more. There is very deep trust and attachment between AS and Warders, there is psychical intimacy caused by the bond, being aware of each other's emotions and physical condition - how on earth wouldn't it lead to marriages or similar relationships in most cases - unless one or both are gay or there is just zero chemistry?
Not love for the ages perhaps, but it seems to me that AS and Warders ought to have a more solid basis for marriage than most. Thoughts?
50. lurker
LTT and the "Mental Construct" Theory

Leigh has expressed her opinion, and the theory in general - and I apologise, as I've further along in my re-read - but I'm curious how the "mental construct" / "not real" camp explains the scene in AKoS where Rand has LTT's memories of a plum orchard across a river.

(sorry to post now, but just read that bit - and will forget by the time the forum gets there; and don't have my book handy to actually quote the line. Just the LLT bit here, made me wonder.)
Marcus W
51. toryx
wetlandernw @ 22:

I actually grew up out west and I've been to Montana a few times. Definitely beautiful open space out there.

Also @ 25, you're right. Egyptian civilization alone spans about the same amount of time as the 3rd Age in Randland. Sure there were advancements in their culture but not a great deal more than was likely seen in Randland and the Egyptians didn't have to contend with Shadowspawn wars.

RobMRobM @ 27: That's the problem; I don't want to see all that land filled with humanity and all their dirty, pollutin' ways.

bkaul @ 30: I understand that, but he shouldn't have given her that time in the first place.
52. Lsana
@42 Randalator,

It isn't just the fact that they all speak the same language. It's the fact that that language has apparently drifted far enough from the Old Tongue that it is completely unintelligible. I could (with some difficulty) buy the arguments that due to continued literacy, one shared origin tongue, etc. that there wouldn't be much linguistic drift, but not the idea that there would be a huge amount of linguistic drift from the original tongue, but all that it would happen more or less identically across the entire world, including places that hadn't spoken to each other in 1000+ years.

And while I'm sympathetic to the "They have enough communication problems even speaking the same language" argument, it could also be turned around: given how little these people communicate with each other in the common language the Creator gave them, they could just as easily be speaking different languages without affecting the story very much.
Alice Arneson
53. Wetlandernw
jej @ 40 - So why did the Roman Republic, a very literate and cultured society which lasted for nearly 500 years prior to the Roman Empire, not make all those techincal advances? The ancient Greeks and Romans spent many centuries with a very well-educated, literate, mobile culture, and they didn't exactly invent the micro-computer. Far as I know, they didn't invent any motive power source that wasn't muscle-driven, either.
Marcus W
54. toryx
lurker @ 50:

Just so you know, those of us who believe that the LTT personality is a construct also believe that the memories are real and available. We just think that Rand unconsciously created the LTT personality so that he doesn't have to deal with the consequences of accepting that the memories are his. The memories are definitely there, Rand is just using LTT as the source for them.
Jay Dauro
55. J.Dauro
lurker @48

You have never looked at a mechanism, and figured how it works? Yes, it is easier when you can play with it, or when you can watch someone else do it, but I have to do it all the time.
Maiane Bakroeva
56. Isilel
Re: a'dam, I am kind of thinking that it is not that perfect and that there is a way to crack it. IMHO, the first damane who used to be independent channelers were watched and guarded far more stringently (I find it difficult to believe that the inventor wouldn't have included a backdoor for herself), but the Seanchan have grown complacent during the centuries of collaring poor ignoramuses and mind-washing them _before_ they actually learned to channel.

Now that they are collaring educated channelers en masse, somebody will find the way to beat it. Maybe it will be the redemption of Shaido Wise Ones - all that Aiel stoicism has got to be good for something, right?
57. lurker
JDauran @55

I agree with you, I guess it's just the mental image I have of the thing "looking like it's all one piece." I don't envision visible mechanical mechanisms...
Brian Slover
58. Xiiv
I would love to see the scene where Sulin runs for Aiel and as they return. To see them all jumpin from balconies busting thru doors and such would just be a riot. And great to watch.
59. Dedicated
The English language is perhaps the fastest changing language in history, it certainly is the largest. So, no we could not understand some English speaker from 1500, but a speaker of say, Polish for example, would not have the same difficulty. Languages change for many reasons, cultural dynamics, technology, geographic separation, etc., but as was pointed out, except for geographic separation, those things have not been a major factor since at least Hawkwings time.

Still the language thing is a plot device since the Aiel speak the same language and they separated from everybody else during the breaking when everybody spoke the old tongue.
60. Dedicated
The English language is perhaps the fastest changing language in history, it certainly is the largest. So, no we could not understand some English speaker from 1500, but a speaker of say, Polish for example, would not have the same difficulty. Languages change for many reasons, cultural dynamics, technology, geographic separation, etc., but as was pointed out, except for geographic separation, those things have not been a major factor since at least Hawkwings time.

Still the language thing is a plot device since the Aiel speak the same language and they separated from everybody else during the breaking when everybody spoke the old tongue.
Roger Powell
61. forkroot
Thanks Isilel@49 for making the point that Randland did not enjoy 3000 years of uninterrupted progress. The Trolloc Wars in particular were portrayed as cataclysmic, much more so than anything in our human history.

As you noted, Ishy is apparently responsible for much or all of the mischief. One thing that hasn't been discussed during the re-read is exactly how Ishamael could be "partially trapped", unlike the rest of the Forsaken.

We first see him right after LTT has finishing slaughtering his family, which should be shortly after the Strike at SG + DO counterstroke (since LTT and his companions went mad instantly.)

So how exactly does Ishy lose his freedom to move around and for how long? There is much that is unexplained.
62. whoami
My explanation about the Randland language is that everyone speaks a variant of the Tairen language.

After all, Artur Hawkwing essentially conquered the world. It just stands to reason that he imposed the Tairen language on the population, through Tavereness, government, and just general cultural influence.

So, what we're seeing is not drift from the Old Tongue, but drift from Tairen.

The Seanchan also speak Tairen.

Hawkwing's empire was a linguistic reset point.
Tess Laird
63. thewindrose
On how Laih survived in Shadar Logoth until Rand balefired her:
Q: How do you explain Liah being in Shadar Logoth for so long?
A: She became absorbed into the city. She was left there and she is, after all, a Aiel, one of the people better at surviving under harsh circumstances than anyone else in the world. And also her corruption by Shadar Logoth gave her *some* protection.

Someone have a time line on how long she was there? I guess the corruption part of the answer explains how she survived with out food or water for longer than 3 days(the water part). Unless she was catching rainwater? Altough this is the part of the story where the DO has made it a perpetual summer with no rain.
Daniel Cole
64. zaldar
well if no one else will start the wot matchmaking service than I guess I shall. Interested, I am thirty male looking for a woman 21 to 35. I teach chemistry at a community college in North Carolina.
John Mann
65. jcmnyu

Completely agree. One of my favorite visuals of the series. I envision Aiel climbing down drapes from the second floor, dive rolling through windows, rappelling down columns. Love it.
Andrew Lovsness
66. drewlovs
The arranged marriages don't bother me as much as I think they should; but then, arranged marriages have a better track record than our "shack up and see what happens" approach. Perhaps thats why. Maybe.

The ogier always felt like the parents of the the humans in Randland. Relaxed, not in a rush, and disapproving of those that break from traditions. I also think that Jordan's marriage had a strong effect on his views of relationships in these book, in that they seem be planted not in passion or lust, but a strong draw towards each other and a mutual respect. I'm discussing the successful relationships here.

You could even argue that the humor on married women can be drawn from his own experience; I tease my wife all the time that the family happiness is directly related to her own happiness. But we have known each other so long now, she knows there is no spite in my humor. In this way, we throw stereotypes at each other all the time, and have fun with them. When we were younger, we did not... draw your own conclusions.

49. Isilel

I think you have the best take on why technology has gone no where in th last 3000 years in Randland. We know Ishy has had a direct hand in keeping anyone or anything from becoming too successful, so why wouldn't he spike anything that would allow for better lives in Randland?
Roger Powell
67. forkroot
IMO you are smart to start with something like WoT in common when looking. I wish you all the success in the world; however if you meet what becomes your VSO through this forum then RobMRobM and I would like a wedding invite, OK?
James Jones
68. jamesedjones
53 Wetlandernw

Personally, I believe it to be a matter of who makes up the educated population. During the Roman Republic (and Empire) you had about 10% of the population recorded as citizens (which includes both men and women; Isilel, check me on that). So maybe a little more than 5% could vote. That's not a high level of literacy.

And it doesn't help civilization, as a whole, if the people who benefit the most from education are the folks who have all the advantages. Remember, America saw an enormous influx of talent during its early years due to the limitations placed on those individuals in most of the rest of the world. Randland has a lot of those same limitations on position, but not wealth and power.

I know I've voiced the opinion that most of the real world is corrupt and evil, but we definitely get stuff done. I just feel that another literate population would have made a little "more" of themselves.
Alice Arneson
69. Wetlandernw
lurker @ 48 (and richg25 @ 29)

You answered your own question: the a'dam responds to how you think of things, not how they are. Egwene had to work hard to think only of the water pitcher's primary use before she could even pick it up after thinking of it as a weapon. Do you honestly think anyone would be capable of convincing themselves that the catch won't open the collar? And if they did, then open it? Not. As far as figuring it out, the doorknob isn't really a good analogy: too much hidden mechanism to logic it without touching. The a'dam catch was a relatively simple thing, as inferred from the various people who are able to open it. You can't open your own or that of another damane because of what you're thinking, not because it's too tricky. And the original inventor apparently didn't leave herself a "backdoor" with it, probably because in her AS arrogance it never occured to her that they would use it on her. But they did... and she screamed...

@ Lots of people - And the truth is, on most of these things even if there is a small logic jump required, I figure that a) stranger things have happened IRL, and b) it's RJ's created world, and if he wanted to create a few logic leaps, why not? I've never found the plot less compelling because Elayne doesn't appear to try to heal birds anymore, or I never see Nynaeve pick up a bow, or the a'dam works really really well or the language drift isn't incomprehensible or.... whatever. For most of the "problems" people object to, I can think of three or four plausible scenarios in which that "problem" is the only logical conclusion. Just because the author didn't take the time to explain that Elayne spent half her childhood doing cartwheels on the garden walls doesn't mean that she had never done anything acrobatic before she met Luca. Or whatever. I guess I find the speculation amusing and fun to join in, but the claims that "this is just too improbable for me" makes me roll my eyes. It's a fantasy, okay? And because it's someone else's fantasy creation, what makes you think you should be able to understand every detail? Heck, I can't wrap my head around magnetic flux; even though I can force my way through the equations to answer the question, I don't understand it. And that's just science, not a huge array of cultural development. *sighs and walks quietly away from soapbox, head down, knowing that no one really cares...*
James Jones
70. jamesedjones
69 Wetlandernw

We all care. That's why we keep posting.

It's just difficult to change anyone's mind. But that's ok, 'cause we all love the story, anyway. We just each have our *own* issues. :)
John Fitzingo
71. Xandar01
What an interesting contradiction here:

LoC: Chapter 20
She looked at him almost disparagingly—Aiel did not use maps, indeed claimed not to need them—and turned away.

TFoH: Chapter 42
While he waits for Rand, Mat studies the maps on the floor. - Lan enters and asks Mat what he thinks of the situation. He gets Mat to talk and Mat quickly outlines a detailed battle plan. - After Mat leaves, Lan tells Rand that Mat almost exactly outlined the plan that the clan chiefs made.

So is this a comment on men generally being more comfortable with maps? Is this a mistake? I find it hard to believe that the Maidens (or the Aiel for that matter) wouldn't use any sort of map, however temporary, in planning some sort of attack. Maybe the Aiel don't have written maps? Thoughts?
Rob Munnelly
72. RobMRobM
@64 and 67. My sentiments as well. Good luck! Rob

p.s. My wife is feeling good about her matchmaking skills these days, as she set up one of my longtime friends with a teacher from my daughter's school five months ago -- and they got engaged last week. So good things can happen through matchmaking....
Andrew Lovsness
73. drewlovs
On the a'dam.

I think it makes sense that the Seanchan made SURE that the leashed ones knew how to open the collar, so they couldn't open them up by themselves.

See, if they didn't know how the colar opened, they could inadvertently open the collar by messing around with it, not knowing that what they were doing at the time would give them freedom. But if you insure that they know how to open the collar, you insure they never do...
Tess Laird
74. thewindrose
Xander01- I don't see paper being easliy available out in the waste. However, when the clan chiefs get into town and are working with wetlanders who have all these maps, and they are not familiar with the lay of the land - yeah I think they would use maps. Maidens are usually used as scouts, and come back with how the land is, where people are - so maybe Sulin is just contemptuous of maps.
Michael Johnson
75. ZshadeZ
Who doesn't lust after Leigh? Well spoken wit, random senseless humor, and old school pop culture references go a long way towards winning over the men in this sort of crowd. The down side is that staring in blank adoration doesn't make for good discussion, and the few creepy bastards floating around give all us non-creepy bastards a bad name. :D
Luke M
76. lmelior
Oops, late today, darn work gettin' in the way.

When I was in college I found I could walk to class at a somewhat leisurely pace and make it in 15 minutes, or I could walk fast with long strides and make it in 7. That is almost an hour and a half I would lose by walking slow! Since I often played video games both at home and in class, I couldn't stand being so wasteful.

And I was right with you at another point Leigh. I remember being really, really excited because I thought Rand was going to meet back up with Tam and the others. Still looking forward to it.
Marcus W
77. toryx
On the whole arranged marriage topic:

I'm amused at how many people seem to have rather...benevolent...feelings behind arranged marriages, seemingly (I could be wrong here) because they're "successful" or have a "better track record" as drewlovs put it.

If one doesn't have a choice as to who one marries, it doesn't seem likely that one would have the choice to leave a marriage. If divorce or separation is not an option, obviously it's going to have a better track record than relationships that do have that option.

Are there any records about how happy people are when they have arranged marriages? Hell, would they even tell the truth if they're asked?

Sorry, I'm just astonished at how many people seem to be advocating such a (to me) abhorrent concept.
j p
78. sps49
Re: Shadowspawn, the Dark-

The DO does something to mark his Chosen, and there is something to mark other DFs (i.e., Alviarin) to other DFs. I infer from this that:

1) Non-DF people have figured out how to read this (LTT meeting Dem- um, Taim.

2) The Pattern can't tell the difference between humans, but Shadowspawn are unnatural enough that the Pattern (and the Creator) recognize them as antithecal to itself and destroys them at the gateway interface.
Joseph Blaidd
79. SteelBlaidd
One of the things that has held back progress is that alot of the relevent texts are in the White Tower. With people who realy arn't interested in applying them.

Consider this example from CoT Ch21.
The Tower Library was divided into twelve depositories, at least insofar as the world knew, and the Ninth was the smallest, given over to texts on various forms of arithmetic, yet it was still a large chamber, a long oval with a flattened dome for a ceiling, filled with row on row of tall wooden shelves, each surrounded by a narrow walkway four paces above the seven-colored floor tiles. Tall ladders stood alongside the shelves, on wheels so they could be moved easily, both on the floor and on the walkways, and mirrored brass stand-lamps with bases so heavy that each took three or four men to move. Fire was a constant concern in the Library. The stand-lamps all burned brightly, ready to light the way for any sister who wanted to find a book or boxed manuscript, but a shelved handcart holding three large leather-cased volumes to be replaced was still in the middle of one aisle exactly where she remembered it from the last time she walked through. She did not understand why there was any need for different forms of arithmetic or why so many books had been written on them, and for all the Tower prided itself on having the greatest collection of books in the world, covering every possible topic, it seemed that most Aes Sedai agreed with her. She had never seen another sister in the Ninth Depository, the reason she used it for her entryway.

The AS are all thoereticians and focused on the One Power. The reason that Elayne is the first one to make a Ter'angreal is that she knows exactly what an a'dam does, and she knows tht people can make them. Once shes made the first one she knows what to look for when examining the next one.

A couple of other thoughts.
I love Elder Haman weaping for the lost history because thats my natural reaction as well. Last summer the Downtown of Cedar Rapids, IA where i live flooded and wiped out the Main Library (30,000 items lost), three museums and the oldest Mosque in the USA. I still feel almost physical pain when I think about it.

Second, yesterday I was listening to the BBC Newshour on NPR and ther was a story about how some theripists have found that, for people who heare voices, directly interacting with them seems to be the most effective way of controling their influence.
80. Narayan23
As for Ishmael partially being trapped.

I always figured the Dark One managed to partially shield his most important pawn from the sealing at the last moment. As for why he needs to be trapped for certain periods of time. I can only speculate the DO only manages to keep him forced from the seal for short instances.

Another thing I find funny is how all forsaken seem to be believing in becoming Nae'blis all the time. While to me it's obvious that the DO always ment Ishmael to be Nae'blis.

He's the only one that seems to realize that there won't be much to rule after the DO is freed whereas the others seem to have this crazy idea they will be ruling the world or something.

This is also the reason why i feel Ishmael always was Nae'blis he's the only one the DO can trust because he fully understands the consequences and still supports him.
John Fitzingo
81. Xandar01
@63. thewindrose
Looks like two months. (Thanks WOT Chonology)

Nesan-12 999NE (Nov-07) Ch.s LOC:19-21
- Rand returns to Caemlyn, meets a delegation of Ogier led by Elder Haman, and goes to Shadar Logoth to ward the Waygate there. Liah is lost in the city.

Taisham-21 1000NE (Jan-11) Ch. ACOS:41
- Rand wakes in the afternoon. He takes the Asha'man to Caemlyn to gather Bashere's army. They invade the city of Illian. At dusk, Rand follows Sammael to Shadar Logoth. He encounters a mysterious wanderer , and then Liah, whom he balefires after she is caught by Mashadar. Sammael is apparently killed by Mashadar too. Rand returns to Illian, where he is offered the Crown of Swords.
Marcus W
82. toryx
Steelblaidd @ 79:

Excellent analysis. That's a great example of why things have failed to progress. The people who hold the knowledge are simply uninterested in exploring it.
Alice Arneson
83. Wetlandernw
toryx @ 77

I think it depends on exactly what you mean by "arranged marriage". Most people seem to envision the scenario where two young people who may never even have met, or may indeed dislike each other, are forced to marry because their parents want to gain money, power, or status through their marriage and the kids are just the bargaining chips. That is indeed abhorrent, no less than burning your children on the altar of a demon god. Either is sacrificing your children for your own benefit and none of theirs.

In our current popular culture, we've gone in the other ditch. Parents aren't supposed to have any say at all in their children's marriages. We've idolized "romantic love" to the point that it's supposed to be the only valid reason for marriage; unfortunately, it's very quickly confused with overactive hormones, so that "I love you" too often means only "I want you". When the "want" wears off, you're left with... not enough to sustain a marriage.

In a far better scenario, consider parents who love their children and want them to have a lifelong, joyful marriage. Knowing what they (should) know about life, love and passion, they can help their children make choices based on more than immediate physical attraction. They can look at issues of character, commitment, interest, and lots more stuff like that, and steer their kids in directions that will be likely to result in real love and lasting marriage. So... that's the version I favor, speaking only for myself.
Maiane Bakroeva
84. Isilel

And the original inventor apparently didn't leave herself a "backdoor" with it, probably because in her AS arrogance it never occured to her that they would use it on her.

Or so they like to claim a thousand years after the fact;). Seanchan "AS" weren't a trusting lot and they intrigued, assassinated and warred against each other for 2 millenia.
Not much room there for this kind of carelessness. If I had been Luthair I wouldn't have waited to see whether the inventor could escape an a'dam. I would have had her paraded around guarded to the gills by other damane and then quietly killed her. Her apparently being kept in the Tower of Ravens seems to speak for this possibility, too.
Jason Lyman
85. jlyman
Busy day at work so I am futilely trying to catch up. Here's what I have so far:

@16. toryx

I feel the same way about the "untouched" beuaty that you find so rare nowadays. I also feel fortunate that I live within a couple hours of wilderness areas. Just a couple weekends ago I went with my wife and some other family backpacking in the Uinta mountains. It was a great experience to have to "bushwack" our way to our destination. Only seeing a few other campers and having no trail to follow always reminds me of these fantasy books and the journeys they take.

@18. DJMacdonald

3000 years of static non-growth (e.g. still a horse and muscle powered agrarian society, muscle powered warfare, etc.) is unbelievable.

This is true to some extent. But if you go back far enough in our own world there were plenty of times that technology was pretty stagnant. Think of the Sumerians to the Egyptians to the Greeks to the Romans and how many years passed between them. Still they did not produce the type of technology that we have today, or even that was seen in the last couple of centuries. I think we've just had a technology explosion in our day. Maybe there will be one at the beginning of the Fourth Age as well. Thanks to Rand.

@40. jamesedjones But... it's fantasy, and an awesome story, and my belief has been suspended for bigger issues therin.

Like who killed Asmodean and what happens to Bela in the end.

@25. Wetlandernw

You beat me to it. I am really slow today on the reread.

@19. Lannis

People on horror movies don't listen to me, either...

My wife does the same thing. Always talking to the TV. At least she doesn't do it in the movie theatre, not out loud anyway.

@27. RobMRobM

Someone should start up WOTanon.

Hi... my name is John.
*Everyone else: "Hi, John."

@31. Drewoftherushes

The fact that three-thousand years and this language is little changed, or that the diaspora communities (Seanchan, Aiel) have been so separate and yet maintain virtually the same language, is unbelievable.

Meh. It's like that for most fantasy novels. So I'm willing to live with it.

As for arranged marriages back when I was younger I was very accepting of the idea. It's a lot of work for a shy boy to get hooked up with a girl that he really likes. So to me to have the whole thing taken care of for me was a darn good idea. But then I got older and, well... things changed.

WOW! That's probably the longest post I've ever made.
86. twicemarked
Isilel @ 84

Only a few damanes can make the A'dam. When Egwene was captured, her suldam said that those damanes that can make A'dam had the easiest work, and were the most pampered. So it would really be a bad idea to collar the inventor immediately.

It is only in superhero movies where the evil overlord shot the mad scientists after the ultimate world destroyer is build. This is not a superhero movie, right?

Historically, it has occured a number of times when the inventor of a torture device is put into said device themselves. But usually not immediately.
Roger Powell
87. forkroot
You bring to mind the case of the city jail in Clifton, Arizona. It was carved out of the solid mountainside by a stonemason. He was paid handsomely for his work. He got drunk (and apparently disorderly) after receiving his paycheck and ended up being the very first resident of the new jail.
88. Shadow_Jak
Regarding the whole "Shadowspawn + Gateway = Dead Shadowspawn" issue.

This highlights one of the real joys of this re-read... the different things that strike different people as just too much to "suspend belief" over.

Gateways? Fine
Shadowspawn? Fine.
But Gateways kill Shadowspawn! What?

That one never bothered me. But I was always unsatisfied with the notion of Fades being the offspring of Trollocs.

I mean Fades, aside from Shaidar Haran, are all just exactly alike. No variations. But Trollocs, have huge variations: feet/hoofs/paws, mouths/jaws/beaks, horns/crests/antlers(?).

Now come on... that just weighs too darn heavy on my "Suspension".
89. alreadymadwithtongueshift
YoSoyElJosh @4
Even with an angreal and a Power nullifying ter'angreal(and a few others) Alivia came out worse from her encounter with Cyndane at the Cleansing.

toryx @16
I'm inclined to blame Liah for getting herself lost in SL. Far Dareis Mai have always had a tendency to belittle Rand's concerns even when they are valid. Note his needing to bark "Run! Far Dareis Mai!" in order for them to actually run. Then there's the bit when they insist it's easier to search for Liah in singles when Rand already specifically instructed them to pair up. It's Mat all over again. Weird, exotic place, and the one in charge could not have been serious about not wandering off. Not to mention Far Dareis Mai faith in their fighting skills.

Drewoftherushes @31
The lack of change in language is attributed to the presence of printed books. If everybody reads the same things, then they are likely to speak the same language they read. Aiel in particular put a high value in books whenever they come across peddlers.

Isilel @49
Some Aes Sedai are said to marry their Warders. Elza uses it as an excuse to have only one Warder (the real reason being both of them are DF's). And Myrelle is said to have married all three of hers. For the most part, others probably can't get their way around the concept that Warders are lower on the hierarchy than they. It's like the concept of not fraternizing with the hired help. The concept is further reinforced by the fact that Warders are conditioned to obey. So there is little or no equality in such a match. That said some AS do have the hots for their own Warders. :P

Dedicated @59
Aiel knowledge of the New Tongue is gleaned mostly from books. We know this because they know the words for river, boat, snow and others without having seen them before. Until the advent of He Who Comes With the Dawn and the search that preceded it, they had only been reading about them. Given their facility with the Old Tongue (easily a match for most nobles and possibly even AS), I suspect the changeover occurred fairly recently. For all we know they may still speak the Old Tongue when among themselves and only use the Common Tongue when dealing with wetlanders.

Whoami @62
While I'm not quite sold on the Tairen language, I think you do have a point in Hawkwing's era being a linguistic reset point.

Isilel @84
My money's on Luthair breaking his word and betraying the a'dam inventor. Then altering the records so that he can say he brought peace to Seandar and that Aes Sedai had been doing the opposite. We are talking about a people who believe theirs is the only pure version of the Prophecies of the Dragon and that others are corrupted simply because those others don't mention the Dragon bowing to the Crystal Throne. If their Prophecies have been tampered with, then rewriting history is a relatively small matter for the ones who did the tampering.

Shadow_JAK @88
I always thought that was nicely explained by Lurks being a throwback to the human side of their genetic ancestry. So they wouldn't have animalistic traits and would instead look like a tall human.
90. Katiya
Re: Shadowspawn in the Ways. Are they like, just wandering around in the Ways for no reason? Is Fain still running a small party of Trollocs and stuff through them? Is someone else using them, transporting parties around for...what reason? I don't know, I just feel like I missed something there.
91. Shadow_Jak
On A'dam and the opening thereof...
A scene I'm hopping to see, is someone removing an A'dam from their own neck.
Maybe by one of the new Shaido WO damane. Maybe by one of the Chosen (Semi comes to mind). Or much better, maybe by Egwene.
Egwene should have the best chance:
1. She's worn both ends of an A'dam. So she understands them pretty well.
2. She's getting lots of practice at "embracing" pain.
3. Being a Dreamer might help. (though it didn't help Moggy)
4. Also, maybe a light dose of forkroot would help.
John Shaw
92. Kinsbane
I would like to comment on Leigh's mentioning of anyone noticing someone else in Rand's head.

Shortly after these chapters is where Perrin arrives in Caemlyn, and Rand finds out where Elayne is, in Salidar, and goes to Mat to give him instructions for getting Elayne, Nynaeve, and Egwene to Caemlyn.

Min's POV's of Rand in this book don't make mention, probably because of lover's blindsight, but Mat and Perrin do, Perrin more so. It's what makes me not like Perrin when he is around Rand. By himself, he's fine, but it seems as though he echoes what Faile mentions in The Shadow Rising: when he's around Rand, it seems as though he's deliberately putting himself in Rand's shadow, and then is subconsciously miffed about it.

There's also a couple times where Rand echoes out loud what's going on his head; I can't recall (I'm in the middle of Crown of Swords right now) if they make any mention of it more than in passing, but more and more, he is showing more outward signs of someone else talking in his head.
93. HornyCreepyMan
I never posted before, but I am just for this:

ZshadeZ, you're coming off as very creepy dude, calm it down.
94. Shadow_Jak
alreadymadwithtongueshift @89

Shadow_JAK @88
I always thought that was nicely explained by Lurks being a throwback to the human side of their genetic ancestry. So they wouldn't have animalistic traits and would instead look like a tall human.

But IIRC, Fades have been described as being "alike as peas in a pod". So maybe Agi only started with one human?
A blind one maybe? ;D
Nah, I don't buy it. But, I'm not really bothered by it. Just an example of how different things strike different folks.

Another thing that strains my "suspension of dis-belief" muscles, but doesn't seem to bother others...
The archery skills displayed by the Two Rivers Boys, (not to mention Birgitte!).
Come on... Physics just won't allow it.
Kristina Blake
95. kab1
Okay so relaxing on a Friday night with VSO and chatting about WoT, he's definitely moved into A category for our discussions, but he'll never go on the websites. We actually have Winter's Heart on in the background (audiobook) as I type.

So, as he's getting farther into the books (and it's come up again in this post, and I'm sure will come up in the future) I asked him if he thought LTT voice was "real" He immediately said "yes, why?"

Then I explained about the "not real, but does has LTTs memories" theory and he really liked it- saying "I can see that!" He's now giving it a bit of thought, it'll be interesting to see what his final thoughts are after KoD. However, I might have revised my thoughts by then, as I should be done with GS (!!) by the time he's done with KoD (the audiobooks are pretty long- some are 40+ hours)
I did find it interesting that his first thought was that the voice was real (I'm in the real camp myself).
Frank Skornia
97. FSkornia
I posted a question back at the beginning of July (during Fires of Heaven) asking about the language differences between the Old Tongue and the New Tongue and someone posted this link with an explanation:

In short, what we're reading is not actually Modern English, it is only in that form so that us readers can understand it. What the Randlanders are speaking is a derived form from the the Old Tongue. RJ kept the Old Tongue "untranslated" as it were because it adds to the mysticism of the setting. Since everyone spoke the same language under Hawkwing's empire, it all descended from there, with different accents in different regions (including the Seanchan). The Seanchan, being descended from a smaller group of people and remaining a fairly homogenized culture throughout their exile retains much of the Old Tongue in their native speech, where a lot of that has passed from the Randland speech.
Robert Mckinnon
98. robmck3898
If only that pesky 404 error would go away. I know the good folks at tor are working hard on it, so trying to not hit refresh 50 times.
Deborah Kay-Morgan
99. moondivatx
I'm getting the error too. Sad about that, but glad it's not just me. The wheel weaves....
Torie Atkinson
100. Torie
Hey folks,

I just want to apologize to you all for the 404 error--we're working to fix it as fast as humanly possible! Please bear with us, and sorry again!
Kristina Blake
101. kab1
hmm... no 404 error here.

SteelBlaidd- thanks for the post. I'm off to dragonmount!
James Hogan
102. Sonofthunder
Nooo...why did you say that?? I couldn't resist the temptation. And thus now I have read the first chapter of TGS. Interesting.
James Jones
103. jamesedjones
Just finished the first chapter, and I have to say, "Thank you, Leigh, for the comments in your reread." :)

Seriously, Rand's reaction to Semi's status would have been painful. But I couldn't shake the image of you *headdeskheaddeskheaddesk*.

Gawd Bless ya!
Roger Powell
104. forkroot
Just based on what it felt like to read the first chapter of TGS, then come back to the reread... it's gonna be weird in late October. I think I'll probably drop off the reread while I digest TGS.

Packing for Hawaii now ... next two weeks of posts will be via iPhone. Aloha!
Tess Laird
105. thewindrose
Enjoy forkroot!! Don't forget to chime in:)
Joseph Blaidd
106. SteelBlaidd
I have just finished Ch 1 and have only one thing to say.


Thomas Keith
107. insectoid
Getting here late as usual.

I just finished reading TGS Ch. 1, too. It's... different. And also: WoW! Can't wait till the 17th.

SteelBlaidd @106 & 96:
LOL!! Thanks for letting us know.

jamesedjones @103:
Agreed! *headdesk*

forkroot @104:
Enjoy your vaca!

And now, relevant to the post:

Lews Therin: Both spooky and kind of funny at the same time. I can recall at least two times in this book when other characters noticed Rand seeming to talk to himself, but other than that it isn't blatantly obvious to them until TGS Ch. 1. (Should I have said that?)

The dizziness: Hmm. The crossing-of-the-streams dizziness doesn't start until the end of ACoS, so I guess this must be an effect of being in Shadar Logoth. (Loony theory: maybe the c-o-t-s made the dizziness affect him in the past?)

I don't think I caught on to the resonance between the taint and SL as being significant, not until the cleansing.

RobMRobM @24 & 46:
You're kidding, right? LOL!
Not to nitpick, but wouldn't it be easier to post a link to Brandon's blog?

Xiiv @58 & jcmnyu@65:
LOL. I can totally see that happening...
108. Lily of the Valley
-formerly CalaLily-

Well, that Chapter 1 link finally got me to go grey. *sigh*

:3 Anywho, EEEEEE! Sneak peek! I'm bouncing in my seat, ya'll, and I can't WAIT.
Andrew Lovsness
109. drewlovs
OMG... yeah, I'm going to avoid the re-read until I finish reading tGS. It took what? 15 seconds for people to talk about new material in the first chapter?

Maiane Bakroeva
110. Isilel
Shadow_Jak @91:

A scene I'm hopping to see, is someone removing an A'dam from their own neck.

Ditto. IMHO, the only way to convince Seanchan to stop collaring channelers is to prove to them that a'dam isn't infallible. We have seen from Tuon's reaction that revelation that sul'dam can learn to channel wouldn't be enough, cause she just feels virtuous that she didn't learn and would never try.

Also, the experienced sul'dam could be a huge reserve of channelers who'd be able to become effective very quickly. They already know all the weaves damane do, after all, at least in theory.

Oh and re: Deain - I meant that once Luthair decided to collar her, he would have been well-advised to guard her by means other than a'dam too and to kill her relatively quickly.
Betrayal on his side or not, the Seanchan "AS" were a suspicious lot and it would have been logical for her to leave an out for herself in an a'dam or to be able to eventually reason out how to break free. And the fact that she was kept in the Tower of Ravens seems to speak for Luthair taking extra precautions.


others probably can't get their way around the concept that Warders are lower on the hierarchy than they.

But why should it prevent them? It didn't IRL, after all, where the situation was reversed for the longest time. Ditto obedience conditioning, which looks more like a Green thing and not something everybody does.
At least we have seen not just Lan, but also Beonin's Warder argue with their AS and it is mentioned several times that Warders can make their disapproval very much known to their AS. They just don't do it in front of an audience, usually.

And it isn't like AS and Warders have a prospect of other meaningful romantic relationships. A bond seems to add to the experience too, if Rand is any guide. So, yea... hm.
mark Proctor
111. mark-p
I'm going to have say goodbye to the reread.
Someone is inevitably going to reveal spoilers from the first chapter (even if trying not to) and i am not going to read that until after i've read the prologue and i don't want to pay extra for that (i'm tempted, is it going to be available in the uk? no no don't tell me)
So see you in November, I hope you all enjoy the Gathering Storm.
112. alreadymadwith1stchapter
In all the hoopla about the 1st chapter being released, why didn't anybody just link to it?
I had to take a roundabout route through Dragonmount... grumblegrumblemuttermutter....

login required
lin mei
113. twicemarked
about the Seanchan and the A'dam thing.

One thing I am kind of curious, is that people seem to believe that after learning suldan can channel, the Scanchan culture will collapse.

I mean, the idea "damane must be leashed" is only a moral fundation of Seanchan culture. So what if suldam can channel too? That only removes the moral reasoning to use leashed channeler. When that reason is gone, a new reason can develop immediately. The "damane must be leashed" because they can be.

Just look at slavery in the south near the Civil War period, or even slavery in the U.S. at the Independence War. When the British said that slaves were just regular people and should not be chained, did it cause the thirteen colonies to collapse?

Even in Universe, when the rumor about the Red Ajah setting up Logain was spread, all it does is to undermine the moral fundation of the legitimency of the Elaida Tower. Did it cause the Tower to collapse? IT seems to have no effect at all.

Just like the Soviet Union, communism is the moral fundation of the system. After the idea died, what happened to the country and the culture? It went into smaller pieces, but remain largely intact. Even the leaders mostly remained, just changed into a different set of clother.

At best, we can only expect a weaker Seanchan, and maybe more rouge elements to do whatever they wish to do. As long as A'dam exist, some will use it, even if Scanchan will not use it.
114. alreadymadwithcollapse
I don't really see how you cannot consider the Civil War or the fragmentation of the former Soviet Union anything but collapse. Yes the US is still whole now, but that only means they were able to rebuild after the collapse of the system of slavery. Just because we see the US now doesn't mean it did not collapse when it was torn apart by Civil War. And the regions that had been dependent on slaves had experienced economical difficulties for a while.
As for the Soviet Union, there is no Soviet Union now. The mere name Soviet Union is rooted in communism. We see Russia, but it only controls part of what used to be the Soviet Union. And for a long while after the collapse Russia had grave political, security and economic-industrial difficulties. So what if they have the same leaders? Or even practically the same system of government? Are you saying they did not experience a period when their industrial, economical and political functions had to be rebuilt?
Antoni Ivanov
115. tonka
@113. twicemarked

I agree with you on almost everything( I agree with alreadymad too). And the Seanchan might find Tuon's reasoning that she decided not to channel and therefore she is not damane as enough.
Surely this revelation will be a blow but Seanchan can recover from that.
lin mei
116. twicemarked
But what is the cause of the collapse? Was the collapse of the South due to the Civil War, or the revealation that slaves are just like you and me, regular people?

If Rand fights a huge war against Seanchan, of course there could be a collapse. But just spreading the idea that suldame can also channel, can this cause the collapse?

Now I am not saying the question is entirely irrelavant. To say the suldame can channel has about the same effect as saying the prists had sex with children. There are certainly impact, and declines are certainly expected. But it certainly is not enough to cause any collapse.

In summary, all the damane stuff is propraganda. Useful? Certainly. Can be countered easily, certainly.
117. mityorkie
The whole "Third Age will eventually become our Earth Age" thing is something I do my best to ignore. I don't care if its RJ or Tolkein, the fantasy world may be getting more like our world, but unless you're talking a novel of historical/alternate history, I find some supposed connection to the actual physical present earth an unnecessary add-on. That and re-inventing the wheel (or cannon, or steam engine) is neat and all, but more than a couple of these in a book gets to be tedious.
Jay Dauro
118. J.Dauro
I believe the Seanchan may have a bit more trouble than some of you appear to, if it becomes known that sul'dam can channel. Although the government may view this a a "moral" issue, the people do not look upon damane like a priest that had sex with children. It's more like wild animals that will probably kill and eat me if I turn my back (and maybe if I keep looking at them.) We have seen that this view is very strongly held, not only among the people, but also among the damane and sul'dam themselves. If it becomes widely known that sul'dam can channel, I expect that it will be harder to control than just changing the "company line."

However, I really expect that something is going to cram Tuon's "I choose not to channel" down her throat. When it becomes a necessity for her to continue living, will it stay a choice? If so, will she choose to die? And if not, might it not be similar to how it happens for those with the spark, you do it without being able to control it? Granted for non-sparkers here, this probably wouldn't work. But a sul'dam has much more experience with the power, sort of first hand ("some even think they can see the weaves") so I think pressure could force them to use the power without conscious control.

And in this scenerio, after she has channeled, how will she deal with the concept of being a "murderer"?

Just my theory. Target practice is now open.
119. Lily of the Valley

America didn't have a Civil War. The war between 1860-1864 was a failed secession. The southern states weren't fighting for control of the US government, which is the definition of a "civil war", they were fighting to establish their own. Basically, the "Civil War" was the American Revolution 2.0, only this time the British won. But, you know, history is written by the victor, so...

Also, it wasn't over whether slavery is right or wrong. It was about whether or not the federal government had any right dictating to the states what they could and could not allow, given that such authority is not recognized to it by the Constitution . Basically a piece of legislation had passed Congress which said states accepted into the Union above a certain longitude couldn't have slaves, and states below it could. The question was: isn't it the right of those states and the citizens in them to decide whether or not they allow slavery in their state constitutions?

Slavery was on the way OUT when the first shots were fired in South Carolina. Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin in 1794 , which made plantation slave labor practically obsolete . Large plantations with dozens of slaves made up about 1% of the South's economy, and buying/housing/feeding slaves was much more costly than hiring a mechanic to fix your Whitney Cotton Gin, especially when it took one slave a full day to clean the seeds from a pound of cotton, but a gin could do 50 pounds in the same amout of time. Probably the only thing that really kept slavery going was the -cost- of the cotton gin .

Okay, I think I'm done with that, now. Anywho, I hope this has been informative to anyone who actually read it. :-)
Marc Breault
120. lizmarc
This comment is a composite of comments from several read re-read posts so I will try to condense this as much as possible. With respect to breaking the seals it is pretty evident LTT has figured out a few things. The bore was first opened because people detected something. In other words, something was leaking through which led them to believe there was something special at that place. We know it as the True Power. Thus, although the Dark One is bound, and his prison was covered up, something leaked through which is what caused the bore to be dug in the first place. Then, when the bore was dug through the Dark One was still not able to break free though he was able to influence things much more easily. This means that even if Rand breaks the seals, the Dark One doesn’t necessarily break free. It seems to be the Dark One is bound by the fabric of reality itself or the Age Lace. The Dark One breaks free by weakening reality, tearing the fabric as it were until there is no coherent fabric left. We see this happening in KoD. Why break the seals then? The fabric is weakening despite the seals. The seals operate like a patch on cloth that is ever stretching. Once a tear happens, the patch accelerates the tear. In other words, if the seals remain in place, once the fabric tears, it will be catastrophic. It may also be that Rand cannot enter the Dark One’s domain until the seals are broken because if the Dark One needs a weak fabric to enter our world, I assume it works both ways. So Rand needs to break the seals to start the Last Battle, but also needs to break them before the tear in the fabric of reality is catastrophic.
LTT’s comment he must kill Demandred seems to indicate he is nearby and LTT detects this though he does not know exactly who Demandred is or where he is.
Finally, I think it was at this point when Rand went to Shadar Logoth in LoC that I realized the taint of this city was caused by the female half of the taint. For some reason, though, I did not realize this must have something to do with the cleansing of the taint on saidin itself. It was only when Rand actually started cleansing it I put all the pieces together.
Ed Rafferty
121. BigBoy57
Did we ever discover if Mierin-Lanfear knew she was boring a hole in the DO's prison?

Was it a conscious attempt to free him or just sheer bad luck?

Were there such things as DF's before the bore?

I cannot remember reading anything referring to these questions in the books - heaps of speculation on the boards but what about evidence?
Andrew Lovsness
122. drewlovs
Couple of thing here. Well, maybe more than a couple. Eli Whitney's invention reinvigorated slavery, it wasn't a death nail. With his invention, the south needed more slaves than ever to pick the cotton. Before his invention, slavery was slowly dying out. WITH his invention, the south needed slaves to pick the cotton; without them the entire southern economy would have been in jeopardy(or so they thought).

Also, civil rights are a national concern, not a state concern. States can decide what definitions it will use for things such as marriage, but the basic package of rights as a US citizen is defined by our constitution. The northern states said slaves were humans, and as such, were covered by the bill of rights; the south disagreed.

As for it not being a "civil war", the south elected a new president and new congress to rule over land that the US ruled; as such, it WAS a civil war. Sucession is is just another word for it. Basically, the civil war was fought for control over a portion of the US (the southern states, obviously).

Lastly (on the civil war conversation), this war was always about slavery. If there were no slavery in the south, the war would never had been fought; I think that pretty much says it all.

Think on this next part.

Do Sul'dams slow? Agewise, I mean...
Lannis .
123. Lannis
@ drewlovs... interesting thoughts--not touching the civil war/slavery with a ten foot pole, but thank you for clearing up some points.

Re: Sul'dams and slowing... my gut reaction to this question was "no." Isn't slowing linked with the amount of channeling a person does? And sul'dams, not truly channeling, would not slow...

But is does second-party channeling (through the a'dam) count for slowing...?

Ew, this is getting sticky...
Antoni Ivanov
124. tonka
Sul'dam don't slow . I remember RJ saying that:

Q: Since sul'dam have abilities normally associated with channelers only, do they also slow?
RJ: No, not unless they actually begin to channel. Slowing is a function of actually channeling. If you have the ability to learn, and you never learn to channel, you are not going to slow. You will age at a normal fashion. Sul'dam are women who can learn, and as they develop the affinity, as they have been doing this for a little while, they begin to slide toward the ability to channel, but they never step over. I believe I have someone say that one of these women felt almost as if she should be able to channel, but not quite. They are getting closer and closer to the brink but they will never step over without conscious effort.

link here
John Massey
125. subwoofer
Wooooo! Read the preview! Rand!-Gone loopy!

Haman vs. Erith and Corvil- *LOL* Women don't get tired... ahhhhhh! Good times!

Was touching the way Haman was crying over lost Groves and cities etc. Ogier are touched by history and transition differently.

@AMW -had shock and awe and awwwwwwww when I saw your log in- then the realization that it is nec. to read the chapter... heh.

Lily of the Valley- hi:) Like the name change.
Seanchan should be in upheaval as they don't have the succession in line yet.

Yes, AS and Warders share a close bond- marriage? Maybe to a cause...

Czesc co slychac?

Loved the Aiel interaction when in Shadar Logoth. Chuckles!

John Massey
126. subwoofer
um........What happens to Bela in the end?

and don't get me started on the Romans... took them 3000 years to build a frinkin' road folks. Not the biggest fan of anything Italian made(jaded because of F1 and dealing with many Italian made things).

mark-p sad times. Muscle through! Who cares about spoilers- its not the same as leaking the final score of the Super Bowl without watching it. Big book with much still uncovered in the pages. Look at these re-reads. Skimming, I tell you!

John Massey
127. subwoofer
-For the cover- AS-"Oh, my! Your pants are really tight! It must be hard for you to breathe. Let me channel and fix that for you."

Rand-"No! No channelling around my pants!"

john mullen
128. johntheirishmongol
Regarding arranged marraiges, while it probably works as a system better than a just letting lust take over, I rather like how mine worked out. Remember too with those arranged marraiges, there wasn't readily available divorce, like there is today.

Re: 1st Chapter: Awesomeness. I think it definitively answers the questions about LTT being real or not. (RAFO) And what the aelfinn say to him at least partly.

Anyway, I am pushing ahead with my reread to be ready for 10/27. Just started PoD and since I only devote an hr or so a day, it usually takes me a week a book. Should time out just about right.

It annoys me a little that the GRR series gets to be filmed before WoT. I probably wont live long enough to see it on film since I don't expect it for 30 years or so
129. Lily of the Valley

Also, civil rights are a national concern, not a state concern. States can decide what definitions it will use for things such as marriage, but the basic package of rights as a US citizen is defined by our constitution. The northern states said slaves were humans, and as such, were covered by the bill of rights; the south disagreed.

It wasn't -about- civil rights being a national concern. If it was, the 3/5 law wouldn't have had to be applied, since Northern states were worried about slaves being counted as part of the human population enough to limit how they were counted and taxed, if only to stop Southern states from gaining influence in the capitol.

As for it not being a "civil war", the south elected a new president and new congress to rule over land that the US ruled; as such, it WAS a civil war. Sucession is is just another word for it. Basically, the civil war was fought for control over a portion of the US (the southern states, obviously).

That's the question, isn't it? If the states had the right to sever connections with what they considered a tyrannical government in 1776, did they not also have that right in 1860? After all, same process, different order of steps. 1776: declaration of independence, war, won war, new government 1.0, new government 2.0. 1860: declaration of independence, new government, war, lost war.

All I'm saying is that the states fought to keep their sovereignty, and lost. It was from here on out that they went from governing bodies held together by a common law, to being governed with any major decisions taken out of their hands.

And, I think, that really is all I'm going to say on that. :-) No more rebuttals from me.

subwoofer: Yeah, I like this name more, too. As for Seanchan and succession...

I'm currently re-reading, like, 4 of the WoT books at once. I have them scattered all over my house. I even have one in my purse for break at work. But I remember when Semirhage "promised" Suroth the Crystal Throne if she can kill Tuon, and that Seanchan is in upheaval over the fact that the entire Imperial family is splattered all over the throne room. Add the fact that sul'dam can channel, and I think that a complete and total collapse isn't too hard to imagine. Maybe this side of the Aryth Ocean, not so much, but over there I predict a mini-Breaking. If we get to see it, which we probably won't.


Iiiiigh, the thought of a live-action WoT movie makes me nervous. Personally, I'd much rather see any Wheel of Time movie done in animation, DreamWorks' style. At least then the characters won't age/have to be replaced.
Helen Peters
130. Helen
Re Dizzyness
It happens again in POD (p310, guess how far I've got;)) 'he let go of the power......for an instant he saw double, the world seemed to tilt dizzily. That was a recent problem....' This is about a week after zapping Ishy at Shadar Logoth and (I think) getting stabbed by Fain. But (again, I think; it's confusing reading ahead 2 books and reading the re-read without taking half the summer off and reading totally different books) before the crossing of the beams??? So it's more likely a SL taint thingy.

Re Language
Can anyone say Babelfish? Or maybe there's a huge ter'angreal buried somewhere from the AoL which acts like the field round the TARDIS. Just coz we've not seen it doesn't mean it's not there.

And for anyone in the UK who may be interested, I had it confirmed by the local bookshop that tGS is out on 27th Oct over here also. They've got 14 copies coming in. 14!!! So no midnight openings like they did for HP6 and 7 then. Though she did say it's going to be popular and they've had lots of people asking about it.

Edited to add: surely Suldam should slow, Morgase has, and she can channel about as far as Elayne could throw her. (Perrin thinks she's only 10 years older than him)
131. Lily of the Valley
Yes, but Morgase can/has channeled. Not a lot, and certainly barely more than embracing the Source, but I think that's what makes the difference. She's trained enough to move the banner in KoD when Galina traps her, Faile, and some of Faile's retainers in a collapsed building, so when she went to the Tower she had to actively channel at least a little, as opposed to sul'dam NEVER actively channeling, only guiding a woman who is using saidar.
132. whoami
There's no way a WOT movie would do the books justice.

I'd like to see a serial TV show, one book per season. But a show like that would last for 15 years, if we end up with 15 books. I'm thinking 22 episodes per season, roughly 2-3 chapters per episode, with chapter names appearing on screen to show authenticity to the books. And that would still be rushed for some chapters.

That would be cool.

But I don't think a show like this could keep an audience for even several years. I don't think other serials, such as Babylon 5, were ever generally popular outside the core science-fiction fan demographic, and that show lasted only 5 years, and bounced from network to network.
Andrew Lovsness
133. drewlovs
To be clear, I am all for states rights, and I think we are losing a lot of what makes our country great when we move more and more power from the states to the federal government. It's not like we have seen a single president/congress that hasn't managed to screw things up anymore than your average state equivilent.

That being said, no one knew (before 1865) if it there would be a chance for states TO leave the union. The civil war decided that once and for all; NO. I doubt anyone in 1776 ever thought to address the issue, and as such, in this case, might makes right ( maybe the founding fathers did discuss leaving the union, but I'm a civil war buff, so I have no idea).

This must be one of the most interesting discussions on the civil war, but that era is soooo tarnished by the crime of slavery, it is a difficult to have said discussion without it becoming emotional. After all, it is as much an emotional issue as it is a civil issue, and it haunts us even today.

You know, these 2 chapters are a bit light on discussion material, if we are talking about whether the south had the right to leave the union.
lin mei
134. twicemarked
I think the best way to treat the sul'dam channeling story line is to treat it as propaganda and counter-propaganda, rather than the more simplistic idea of "the Truth will set them free". One major theme of WOT is about communication, opinion and truth. It has been said here that different readers will draw the opposite conclusions from the exact same WOT text. Truth is not as simple as it looks.

Tuon's counter to this is merely that, she choose not to channel. As counter propaganda goes, that is not a bad move. The standard counter against the evil of capitalism by Winston Churchill, is that any other known way to organize society is more evil, rather that how nice capitalism is.

I agree with Lily of the Valley that
Semirhage killing the whole imperial family has more impact over in the homeland. It is all about political manuvering. If Tuon is as good as she claims to be in politics, she could counter the fact with any number of answers. Heck, she could blame the whole thing on the Dragon Reborn.

It is like a political campaign. If one camp says the other candidate murder babies, the other camp needs to make a timely response, and still win the election.
eric s
135. silverprl1
Something missing from this conversation is the fact that the evil that burns in Shadar Logoth is different and separate from that of the shadow, even killing the shadow born until this resonance appears. Thain is outside the dark ones pull because of the different evil of Shadar Logoth, etc... And the wounds in Rands side fight each other, one from the Dark One's side and one from Shadar Logoth.

I think RJ realized he needed a way for Rand to attack the taint, and/or unknowingly release the dark one, before the last battle, so this resonance was brought in as a plot line...

Also, when Rand and Nynieve eventually attempt to remove the taint, does anyone else notice that the mound that appears and then shoots into the sky is exactly what Miran aka Lanfir did when Rands relative saw her burn a hole into the dark ones prison, while he walked through the Glass Collumns, on his journey to becoming the Chief of Chiefs? This mound was black, the old was white, yet either way, they are described the same. This is the turning point to the shadow gaining on the forces of light in the books...

Lastly, as to the voice in his head... He blurts things out on occasion, and people are often seen noticing his blacnk stare as if he was talking to a voice in his head. Remember "break it Break it Break it" at the royal palace when he is given a seal to the dark one's prison... and then various people noticing his awkward stare/behavior and backing away. It comes and goes in various amounts depending on the book and who he is interacting with.
sandi vogel
136. sinfulcashew
lily and johntheirishmongrel

One word!
137. Lily of the Valley
Oh please, Good Lord, no. NOT Pixar. NOT for WoT!

If a movie is made, I'm totally petitioning for DreamWork's style. Ala Road to El Dorado.
sandi vogel
138. sinfulcashew
Then you really mean a "cartoon".
139. Lily of the Valley
Have you seen Road to El Dorado? Or any of Dreamworks' stuff? Just because it's classic 2D animation doesn't mean it's "kiddy" or cartoonish. ;D

Dreamworks =/= Disney.

I would fight tooth and nail to keep Disney as far away from The Wheel of Time as physically possible. Preferably, they would be on different continents. But, seeing as Disney has managed to spawn a global empire, I fear no where is ever really safe from them...
john mullen
140. johntheirishmongol
Sorry, I dont want to see it as cartoon and the bit with the graphic people doesn't work for me yet. I had a much better idea, which was to film as a series but after the first book, as the characters split off you can split them off on a different night, so you might have 3 separate tv series working at the same time. All using the WoT. Of course, at some point you might just suck up all the time on a network, 5 days a week. It could be bigger than Idol, lol

The only other way you could do it would be to cut the story lines to 1 or 2.
141. Lily of the Valley
The problem I see with any live-action storytelling would be aging actors. If you make characters who are supposed to be older, younger so they can stay longer, I feel it wouldn't be an accurate reflection of the story. Same with them actually aging IRL. Not to mention this story took twenty years to write. How long would it take to tell it visually, in a medium like movies or tv? And what about contract disputes, filming/editing time, advertising, any resulting products...

I just see animation as more feasible, is all. No one cares if voice actors age, because we don't see them. ;D
lin mei
142. twicemarked
silverpr1 @ 135

By the same logic, shadow has gained ground after the Eye of the World was used up, as the Forsaken started to control multiple countries after that. So Rand's victory there was helping shadow also. And you can say that about every book.

Very few readers will agree with your take that cleaning saidin is the reason the DO are becoming more powerful.

RJ does not need a reason to release the DO in WH. In every book the DO are becoming stronger.
eric s
143. silverprl1

RE: release

I am just saying that the desciption of the day that Miran/Lanfir bored a hole in what became known as Shael Ghul to reach a power that would make it possible for men and women to not need to work together anymore (the true power as it turns out) Is the exact opposite, and yet spectacularly the same as cleansing the taint. Black Vs. White.

So was it sealing the taint in? or... Boring another hole? .. or both?
Hurin Smells
144. HurinSmells
Lily @ 137

Have you seen the previews for James Cameron's latest movie, Avatar? That's essentially a composite of live action and 3d graphics, but it appears to be done really well. Using motion capture animators can do some pretty cool stuff with CGI these days.

But I seriously doubt any studio will be willing to fork out the cash required to do justice to a series as rich and LONG as WoT. Did anyone see the last two Harry Potter films? It's not like those books were all that long, but each of those movies was ~3 hours long and they still shredded the plot to the bare essentials and in some cases changed it completely. Or what about the Watchmen movie? That was a great graphic novel, but on film it SUCKED!

On that basis I have to vote NO for any film adaption of WoT, cause it will get mutilated.
sandi vogel
145. sinfulcashew
Pixar is with Disney also.
I had the vcr movie of the El Dorado movie.(with Kevin Kline as one of the voices?)
Maybe you are talking about a different one?
Don't think Dreamworks can do it justice like Pixar.

(Just got back here so missed the answer for awhile)

Do have to agree somewhat with you.
Birgit F
146. birgit
unless there is a Mauve Ajah devoted to using the One Power to spin thread and weave it into cloth.

Fancloth (warder cloaks) is made with a ter'angreal.

I guess the corruption part of the answer explains how she survived with out food or water for longer than 3 days(the water part).

Are there no wells in Shadar Logoth?

Did we ever discover if Mierin-Lanfear knew she was boring a hole in the DO's prison?

She didn't know what the new engergy source was until after they drilled the Bore.

Maybe Fain with his Shadar Logoth taint can be used to keep the DO from escaping the Bore until it heals naturally or he can be a new seal.
Lord Haart
147. LordHaart
@107 Insectoid
"The dizziness: Hmm. The crossing-of-the-streams dizziness doesn't start until the end of ACoS, so I guess this must be an effect of being in Shadar Logoth. (Loony theory: maybe the c-o-t-s made the dizziness affect him in the past?) "

Awesome theory imo, fits perfectly with the nature of Balefire and RJ's love of foreshadowing. Makes more sense the more I think of it.

Anyhow, I won't be reading the blog until I've done Chapter One, which I've decided to do only after the prologue. See you all then, thanks for the ride so far!
Eric Wells
148. ewells
After playing Xbox all 3 days this weekend I think that the best possible medium would be a LEGO-style animated video game. (Actually the animation in the Clone Wars series on Cartoon Network is pretty impressive. I am in the TV series, one season per book camp.)
149. Qtip6
@18 I believe that you have two forces at work, limiting technologial growth. The first is a distinct lack of liesure time. One of the factors behind the explosive growth of technological advancement was technological advancement: as simple machines freed individuals from the spending their waking hours on survival, time could be used to invent and try new possibilities in a widespread way. We had a genius in Leonardo Da Vinci, but many of his inventions, like the helicopter and nunerous others, didn't achieve pracitcal application for hundreds of years because a lack of commitment to apply these ideas into working models.

The second factor I believe is Ishamael's influence on the world. He would press upon Randland with his shadowspawn armies numerous times, forcing the people back into a fight for their very existence, and smashing them back to a primitive culture a la Jerry Pournelle's Janissaries on Tran.

I also believe that having the convenience of the One Power, it was much simpler to simply use saidar to lift a heavy object than a block and tackle, at least among the learned class with the liesure time to bother with invention and advancement. It is Rand's school in Caihein that is enabling the advances we see, since how many learned nobles would have the experience at harvest time to not only see the advantages of a mechanical reaper, but also the skill and knowledge to develop one and the motivation to perfect it?
Marc Breault
150. lizmarc
Everything in WoT is based on balance. The One Power is life. This is sated many times. It follows there is a power that leads to death and the taint on Saidin is an example of this. It follows that if the male half has the ability to be tainted then so does the female half and this is what happens in Shadar Logoth. If the male half is tainted then balance demands the female half be tainted as well. It probably has to do with breaking the power. When Rand cleanses the taint he puts the male taint into the female taint and makes the two whole or cancel each other out.
151. Aye Aye Sedai
** OFf topic @ 122 "Lastly (on the civil war conversation), this war was always about slavery. If there were no slavery in the south, the war would never had been fought; I think that pretty much says it all. "

No the slavery aspect was only part of the civil war issue but not necessarily the major reason for most participants - Norther Industrialism vs the Southern Agrcultural, issues of federal vs states rights etc, Tarrifs and Taxation issues etc.

I think you’re too simplistic in your assertions. You might as well say the causes of the Civil War were money and power, which is the basis for slavery in the first place.

Back to topic - Interesting issues of slavery, gaishan etc in WOT but no abolitionists excepting those wanting to free the damnae - but basically targeting former Aes Sedai rather than all Damnae.

Ron Garrison
152. Man-0-Manetheran
I'm pretty much in the no-movie camp regarding WOT. I just don't think that even a series (a HUGE series!) could do it justice. The Lord of the Rings was a surprising exception, but Dune - OMG that was horrible! I wouldn't want the same fate for WOT.

But then again, I've always cast Lisa Kudrow as Nynaeve, and:
Lan - Sean Connery
Verin - Angela Lansbury
Cadsuane - Bea Arthur would have been perfect - but Lilly Tomlin could do a great job
Gareth Byrne - Patrick Stewart
Siuan - Meryl Streep

In the long run, the books are the best way to experience WOT. Go-o-o-o-o books!
Clinton Henry
153. Jaidee
@29 the weak point in the adam is not in the adam itself (which make sense as they would have pefected it over time) it is the fact that the controller can also be controlled by it.

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