Aug 30 2010 12:45pm
The Way of Kings Holds a Secret From The Wheel of Time

How’s this for a Great Hunt?

Tor Books has just announced that, starting tomorrow, an exclusive secret from the Wheel of Time will go live on Brandon Sanderson’s website!

But it won’t go live without a fight: the page will be completely encrypted. (As of Tuesday morning it's not yet live, sorry.)

To unlock it, fans will have to hunt down the many unique digital codes, printed on the back of Wheel of Time bumper stickers that Brandon will hide inside copies of The Way of Kings along each stop on his tour. (Which kicks off tonight!)

Each bumper sticker/code will unlock a piece of the secret and it will require the work of many fans in many cities to unlock the entire page. The Great Hunt begins!

John Fitzingo
2. Xandar01
Time to start hanging out at the airport...
I killed Asmodean
3. I killed Asmodean
Dont be silly I killed him :)
James Jones
4. jamesedjones
Seriously?! All that effort for just one secret? Kinda meager...

Glad to know it'll be available, though. I'll just go about my life until someone posts it. :D
I killed Asmodean
6. alreadymadwithsecret
Right. He's not even coming into my country
Daniel Chamberlin
7. critter42
so what's the plan if some dbag gets one of the stickers and decides to throw it away?
Anyway, I figure it'll be brute-force cracked long before all the codes are recovered.
Barry T
8. blindillusion
Hmm, going by the tour schedule, it seems it'll be September 14 before the page has any chance of coming to life clue has any chance of being broken.

Tsk. JEJ, it's that kind of attitude that's going to cause the clue to never be found.
Rob Munnelly
9. RobMRobM
@1 - I'm betting on who killed Asmo as well (cough Graendel cough). Not a huge reveal from story standpoint but nice bit to enhance interest among the fanbase.

Not sure what else it could be? Who is Mesanaa? (cough Danelle c0ugh).

Did Lanfear have a magic ter'angreal that she lost in Finnland that enhanced her beauty and power? (yes)

Where's Demandred? (Murandy or Shara, take your pick)

Is Taim really Mori in disguise (yes)

I killed Asmodean
10. trench
well that will be fun for some people, pretty boring for the rest of us though
I killed Asmodean
11. kasper11
Seriously Brandon, you can't hit NY at all?

I doubt the page reveals who killed Asmo....Harriet would have to sign off on that kind of a reveal, and it seems like a major thing to give to promote Brandon's unrelated series. My guess is it reveals something a lot more minor than that.
I killed Asmodean
12. Littleleicesterfox
@ Betterthenyouknew

Look on the bright side. He's not even coming to my continent, never mind my country or city :(
Rich Bennett
13. Neuralnet
Brandon, you are a torturer! I am guessing that the secret is relatively minor, but still cant wait to try and figure it out. hope people post the clues online
I killed Asmodean
14. Juan Budee

I've seen a copy of the secret, and here it is:

"Be sure to drink your Ovaltine."
I killed Asmodean
15. Leotrak
@littleleicesterfox: same here -_-" No love for Europe again...
Kalyani Poluri
16. pvslkalyani
Yay... I hope to get the sticker in Washington DC.. :)
Logan Neufeld
17. Exgamer
@Juan Budee: No! Foiled again by Little Orphan Annie!
18. MasterAlThor

Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha

thanks I needed that kinda laugh.

I killed Asmodean
20. bookinhand
C'mon guys - no need to be negative. Something is better than nothing, and nothing is just about the same as nothing. So, by my calculations, there is nothing to complain about (and maybe even a little something to be happy about).
21. Freelancer
Maybe they would complain less if Tor charged $2.99 for the clues.

No, they complained about the prologue costing that, even though they choose not to pay it.

I guess complainers will just complain.

I'm intrigued, and will just have to wait until Sep 10 before I can get a clue-sticker of my own.
I killed Asmodean
22. aross07
I just got my bumper sticker! SPOILER ALERT!

It reads:


I had a tough time with that one until I realized by turning it over...


The clue appears to be guiding us to McDonalds to put the "M" back into our morning.
Rob Munnelly
23. RobMRobM
The clue will be: "This monstrous character killed Asmo and was nuked by Rand along with several hundred mindcontrolled, underdressed minions."
I killed Asmodean
24. Tenesmus
Graendal Killed Asmodean. It makes sense becasue BS had to edit the book down for word count, which means he had to delete the scene where we get a Graendal POV as she gets baliofied right after she reminesces about killing Asmo.

We get a puzzle and he gets to shorten TOM by a thousand words by deleting her POV. Everyone wins!
Wayne Wilson
25. stylusmobilus
My guess on the secret is, Tam Al'Thor had an affair with Nynaeve's mum and therefore Rand and Nyn are really 'siblings'.
john massey
26. subwoofer
-Well, that killed the goat... or to be precise, this blows goats! So us folks that are far, far removed from BS's book tour will have to hang out and wait for the dregs... geee thanks ...

Guess I am seconding JEJ's sentiments- hang around and wait for somebody to leak the spoiler on the net.

@Free- complainers do have valid points. So back in in the before we took a serious look at
segratation the folks getting persecuted were complainers? I'm fine paying $2.99 for anything, as long as I get equal access to it.

Irene Gallo
28. Irene
Subwoofer: Once the clues are unlocked, Brandon will be hosting them for everyone to see -- everyone will get the scene, it just ads a bit of fun to the reveal of it.
Mike McD
29. msmcdon
So... when you say the website will go live tomorrow, and you say it on Friday, and it's now Monday...

What I'm trying to get at is, when exactly does this website go live? Or is Chrome telling me I've got a broken link because the page is just that well encrypted?
Wayne Wilson
30. stylusmobilus

I got a broken link through Firefox, and I didn't see this thread last night so I think they must mean 'tomorrow' from about ten or so hours ago.
Irene Gallo
31. Irene
msmcdon: You caught a glitch. The post went up Monday just after 11:45 EST. I'll have the date corrected.
Barry T
32. blindillusion
Oh, so...this site is called the Great Hunt?

So, are we finally going to be given the clue we all missed in books 4-6?

Interesting. Cannot wait to see it. =)

And yes, I realize the site is probably called the Great Hunt because of the hunt involved in finding the clue. But what's a little harmless speculation among friends.
Justin Levitt
33. TyranAmiros
I will help with the San Diego leg, if the fabulous team at Mysterious Galaxy hasn't gotten there first!
Alice Arneson
34. Wetlandernw
Freelancer @21 - That's about the truth of it. Fact is, very few people who make it to the signings will even get the secret codes. It's all part of the fun, but some folks can't figure out how to enjoy the game unless they get to be the one with the winning ticket. I expect to see Brandon on the 14th, but I doubt I'll get a bumper sticker with a secret code. So what? I'll watch on his website as the page begins to decrypt, and make my guesses as to what's still hidden. Anyone can participate in that, no matter where they live, and it doesn't even cost them anything.

I just don't get the complaining. And as for whingeing about the "crass marketing ploys" - that's just foolishness. A successful business must use many means to market its product, or it won't be successful very long. Oh well...

Hmmmm. Wonder where that Shardbearer application went....
john massey
35. subwoofer
@Irene- yay:) sounds good, sorry my initial reaction was the same as when I found out I cannot get a seat on the "Bud Plane" as I am not a resident of the continental US. It really burns my fur when I hear about contests that I am not even within striking distance of and I have to sit by the sidelines and watch. Charlie at least had a chance at the golden ticket.

I do find it interesting that people are complaining about people complaining. I am sure there is a Monty Python bit in there somewheres.

Maybe BS can take a trip up north. I am sure we would all flock to Vancouver or Toronto to get our paws on a signature of ToM. I'd buy two, one to get signed, one to read.

Mike McD
36. msmcdon

Ah well, that makes more sense! I was a little puzzled by the post date, I didn't think it was from that many days ago...
James Jones
37. jamesedjones
34 Wetlandernw

I think Sub has a valid point. It's kind of a cruel tease for folks outside of the tour area. The fact that it's going to be available to everyone doesn't change the fact that some of us don't get to participate.

In my case, I was just moaning about the fact that it's a little secret that probably won't change the books for anyone (since it should be available before ToM is released). And I will always reserve my right to whine and moan (go with what you know). ;)
Ben Frey
38. BenPatient
Sorry, I don't think it's a valid point at all.
What if BS was based in Ireland? If you want to participate, get on a plane. I live in the US, but I'm so far from any tour stop that I won't be able to go. Is that unfair to me?
In fact, it is more fair than what's happening at DragonCon, because people there will get a super-special reading from ToM that nobody outside of Atlanta will get. How dare they?
This Great Hunt secret is completely fair because we'll all get to follow along on the page (which is live now) and learn the secret together.
I killed Asmodean
39. Tenesmus
Just looked at the Great Hunt site and it looks like a covered up deleted scene, which makes me think I was right from the beginning. It is likely a Graendal POVright as she gets killed in TGS, where she remembers killing Asmo with balefire, just before she is herself balefired...
I killed Asmodean
40. George Scott
Brandon Sanderson will be signing at The Decatur Book Festival Sat. Sept. 4th 3pm at the First Baptist Decatur Sanctuary Stage.
At Eagle Eye Book Shop Sun. Sept. 5th
Call for time 404-486-0307
Theresa Gray
41. Terez27
I just unlocked the first character - the semicolon. Yay! Someone had called the bookstore - Brandon asked us to please not do this any more - and they posted that the clue didn't work. They said it was 'A Question of Leadership'. Brandon said that was almost right, so I tried 'Questions of Leadership' instead. It worked! Also exciting is that it seems to be a chapter name; that was why I used that wording.
I killed Asmodean
42. Tenesmus
Really?! A semi-colon! Uhg! There must be a way to cheat!!!! What will we get next? A period, the space bar?! AHHHHHHHHH!! Don't they know I am a puzzle addict?! Still willing to bet $$ it is a deleted Graendal POV though. I plan to get to the signing on the 8th in DC, so maybe I'll know then. BTW I tried to enter "Distinctions" but it wasn't a code phrase. I do think you are on to the Chapter title thing though. If anyone finds out titles, try putting them in.
I killed Asmodean
43. Colonial
Sounds interesting. Just wondering though - what's the big deal with who killed Asmodean? Before he died, didn't RJ say in an interview that he'd put it in the book if he could, otherwise he'd just reveal it after? The identity must not have any relevance if it doesn't have to be in the book.

Demandred's location/identity may be too big of a secret to reveal prior to this book or the next, but I can see Mesaana's identity not being too big now that the Black Ajah was revealed.
Barry T
44. blindillusion
WooHoo. Lots of "D"s and "t"s...and what appears to be a "1". One question...where'd the semicolons go?
Joseph Blaidd
45. SteelBlaidd
When you try a code make sure you post the code, it's number and which character it unlocks, My guess is there are roughly 55-56 codes. We might be able to gean some extra information from the chapter list.

Curently 1,2 and 4 have unlocked t,D,and ; Known Code is "Questions of Leadership"
Theresa Gray
47. Terez27
I'm not good at the number aspect of this, but if there are 55-56 codes, that's almost one for every chapter, and I got the impression that Brandon left a few out because they would be too easy to guess. 'Distinctions' was one of them, out of 59 names total (assuming the epilogue is named).
Henry Loose
48. schrodinger
we now have code 21... the almighty question mark?
49. pheerlis
OK so can I purchase a FLIPPIN VOWEL HERE! How about a . Are there to be any spaces...or is this all just a loooooooooooooong word with various punctuation thrown in for fun....
I'm going back to the Shattered Plains now!
Be Gone "Illuminated Dummy Box of Frustration"...(POOF!)
Jeanette Baker
50. FollowYourMuse
I think it is brilliant! I know some people will not care, some would rather get all the answers without the "Hunt" but I think it is a wonder ful way to keep thinking and trying to solve the riddles while we wait for the next book.
James Hogan
51. Sonofthunder
Alright, I need to stop entering random codes...I keep getting the "You have entered too many codes! Please wait an hour." Apparently none of my chapter names are canon. Do we have some old chapter names that get used in multiple books? Or have we tried "A Shadow at Noon"? That was going to be my next guess, except now I have to wait another hour. Ah well.

EDIT: And since there are apparently many people as crazy as me, here's the link to all the failed guesses:

So check that before you guess!
Rebecca Heath
52. Melantha
His closest stop to me is two states away...on a day I need to work. Go figure.
Karen Fox
53. thepupxpert
I'm going to San Diego! It'll be a two hour drive and I have to drive home from work to grab my kid and then get back in the car on a Friday night but I think it's worth it!
Karen Fox
54. thepupxpert
Well I just got the "you've entered too many times" notification so here I sit waiting my one hour.
Alice Arneson
55. Wetlandernw
thepupxpert - Look for Freelancer while you're there!
I killed Asmodean
56. ian b manc
Since we have "D" now, we could pattern match for names such as Demandred.
i.e D####d##d
James Hogan
57. Sonofthunder
I'm still sad he's not coming to Texas(Houston, namely). He finally comes to Florida after I've already moved away! But then, I can only blame myself...he was in Dallas last year, and I didn't want to make the drive. Silly me.
Alice Arneson
58. Wetlandernw
ian b manc @56 - I'm pretty sure we don't have all the lower-case d's yet; I can't believe that in a segment that long, there are only 19 lower-case d's. For that matter, there have to be more than 28 lower-case e's, so I don't know what the deal is with that.

We also have some but clearly not all of the spaces; it looks to me like there must be more than one code per character. I guess we'll have to "HAFO," as Brandon said.
I killed Asmodean
59. ian b manc
Yes, there are a wee bit too few d's. Ah well.
Although the pattern D#####t pops up quite a few times with a space each end. However, I can't find a match on WOT encyclopedia.

God, this is fun!!
Joseph Blaidd
60. SteelBlaidd
Thear have to be more spaces because otherwise everything starts or ends with a "t"
I killed Asmodean
61. slowhunting
There are a couple of D#########t which might be Dragonmount, so can this piece pick up where TGS left off?
Bouke de Boer
62. Bouke
Well, the first word is obviously "Mat", so that should give some direction as to what this all entails...
Matt Hatch
63. Tamyrlin
Hey All - As the list of failed attempts is getting quite long, I figured it might be easier for those "Hunters" among us to do a quick check against guesses they are making through a simple tool (yes, ctrl-f on the master list I'm keeping will get you just about the same thing.) So, I put together a Great Hunt page at Theoryland where you can test out your phrases or do a quick look up on a word and how it has been used before (such as 'Bargain') - anyway, enjoy.
Jana Sedai
64. Deadsy
We have a Thom & Tuon now, but I won't be satisfied without a Bela.
Heidi Byrd
65. sweetlilflower
If both Thom and Tuon are in the scene, perhaps it is a deleted scene from KoD. Why else would both be mentioned? Well, I guess Mat could be talking about Tuon to Thom, but that seems too big.
Thomas Keith
66. insectoid
Pupxpert @53/WetNW @55: Won't find me there; I think we're busy that day. Some sort of sporting event downtown. :D (And they'd better not lose! They've done far too much of that already the last two weeks.)

Matt Hatch
67. Tamyrlin
For those "hunters" that are guessing codes, we've thrown together a search tool that will do a lookup on the master list of failed guesses, to verify that your guess has not been tried by another fan - thought it would be easier than checking the master list I'm compiling of almost 3000 guesses (although ctrl-f will do just about the same thing.) Anyway, go to Theoryland and click "The Great Hunt" link in the left column under Theoryland News to get to the tool. Enjoy!

(I tried to add this yesterday but it had a direct link that apparently is being moderated for being spam.)
Theresa Gray
69. Terez27
Also, you can find details about all the open codes, closed codes, and how they were found or guessed here, including a new list that will help us determine which guess was (as per Peter) only one word off.
Barry T
70. blindillusion
Well, one would have to say the Great Hunt has something to do with Mat, Tuon and Thom. Now I'm really, really looking forward to having all the clues in.
Bouke de Boer
71. Bouke
You have to wonder, though, is each new codephrase unlocking a specific part of the message, or is this a fixed order and each code unlocks the next part?
I'm guessing it is the second, it just seems too random that Mat hasn't been completely revealed, while Thom, Tuon, Aes Sedai and Caemlyn have...

Anyway, still too soon to make anything of it! My nerves, they are not taking this well.
Alice Arneson
72. Wetlandernw
Bouke @71 - Brandon basically said on Twitter/Facebook that the codes aren't specific to what is revealed, but rather each added code unlocks the next "line of reveals." So what is revealed depends purely on how many codes have been found, rather than which ones.
I killed Asmodean
73. petelaw
The word "dice" shows up 14 times on the page. Must be playing.
Jack Wu
74. jackwu
Amazing, i dont quite get it though :)
Rob Munnelly
75. RobMRobM
Terez-the chapter referred to in footnote 5 with a "blood" reference. Wouldn't that likely be referring to Seanchan bloodknives killing sisters in Tar Valon? Seems obvious, no?
Bouke de Boer
76. Bouke
Wetlandernw @72: I'm probably the last of a dying breed not on Twitter and nigh invisible on Facebook, so thanks for the update!
I killed Asmodean
77. Mashiara
The Seven-Striped Lass - surely that's a reference to an Egwene chapter? Mat, Tuon, Thom and Egwene in one chapter... very exciting!
Rob Munnelly
78. RobMRobM
@77 - If it is a discussion between Thom and Mat, as it looks to be, it would be more likely that the "seven-striped lass" refers to Moiraine, no? Or if it refers to a younger AS, more probably Elayne in the context of building dragons.

James Hogan
79. Sonofthunder
Hmm, "Seven Striped Lass" seems to be an inn name to me - seems like a classic WoT inn name! And it's in the text right before Caemlyn, so I assume it would be in Caemlyn...

Also, several other words have been revealed, "Queen", "Aes Sedai", and "Caemlyn".
Barry T
80. blindillusion
If the Seven-Striped lass was an inn, wouldn't the "l" in lass be capitalized?
James Hogan
81. Sonofthunder
Oh...darn. Guess that's true. But why in the world is "Seven-Striped" capitalized then??
Barry T
82. blindillusion
Well, it could be Mat and Thom talking about Egwene, with Thom referring to Egwene as the "Seven-Stripped lass" in leu of the "Amyrlin Seat".

It seems like a "title" Thom would use to refer to someone he helped bring out of a backwater village in the far end of nowhere.

So, perhaps the scene we're trying to decypher occurs after Mat and Thom find out from Elayne that Egwene truly is the Amyrlin Seat.
Sanctume Spiritstone
83. Sanctume
Asmo is alive! That much balefire undid all the deeds Graendal done since the beginning of her previous existence. Unless Graendal left the building.
Daniel Goss
84. Beren
I'll agree that when I saw the title my first instinct was that it would be the name of an inn. Especially since the word inn currently appears several times in the text, and this wouldn't be the first chapter named after an inn. Of course, that's assuming that the instances of "inn" aren't simply parts of other words.

(completely unrelated, mostly)
Has anyone compiled a list of all of the Inn names in the books? Just idle curiosity, but it might be interesting to look at.
Rob Munnelly
85. RobMRobM
@84. It has been done, but I can't remember where. Either Thirteenth Depository or Encyclopedia WoT.
Barry T
86. blindillusion
I'd have to say all the "inn"s in the text have to deal with the Aelfinn and Eelfinn. But that's just a thought.

And if you like research, Encyclopaedia WoT has most of the inns named through the series located in the Geography section.
Bouke de Boer
88. Bouke
They may have been talking about Egwene in a public place (an inn?) and did not want to call her by name or official title.

I do think, though, that the inn-s in the text refer to the Aelf- and Eelf-, at least most of them. Knowing Mat, they probably would spend a lot of time in an actual inn as well!
Daniel Goss
89. Beren
@87 Windrose:
Thank you, that was exactly what I was looking for.
Daniel Hanley
90. dmhman749
To Sanctume @ 83, I doubt it...Asmo died over six months ago in the story...While it was a lot of balefire, i doubt it was six months+ worth. Rand making as strong a balefire as he could with his old angreal took back about 30 min or so. I realize the Choden Kal is MUCH stronger, but he wasn't drawing it anywhere near its capacity. i doubt he was drawing ten thousand times as much of the power as when he balefired Rahvin. Also, I seem to remember RJ saying somewhere that Asmo was gone for good and that we wouldn't be seeing him again.

Besides, he serves no purpose in the plot at this point. There is very little he could teach rand at this point(even assuming he has not further gained LTT's memories).
Christopher Page
91. Lothahnus
I think Moraine is in three as well. there are a lot of seven letter M words that seem like a name to me.
Theresa Gray
92. Terez27
@Rob - It's only a partial association with 'Blood', and no association with 'Air' that I can definitely not obvious. Did you have something in mind that makes it 'obvious' to you?
I killed Asmodean
93. Lothahnus
What if people dont participate and turn in the codes? then will it be revealed to us or will we be left in the dark forever?
Daniel Hanley
94. dmhman749
there are duplicates of each code, per BS. I assume it is one of the POV's from an early chapter anyway, so if it doesn't get revealed by the time the book is released, we can probably read it there.
I killed Asmodean
97. Alrin
Going by the schedule, it looks like all the codes should be out there after tonight, but the overall meaning of the passage isn't remotely decipherable yet. I guess there are just a lot of people who happened upon the codes who are not entering them for whatever reason.
Rob Munnelly
98. RobMRobM
@92. It is clear from TGS that Bloodknives will be on or near the WT grounds with the intention of killing sisters/warders, and the threat will need to be identified and rooted out early in ToM. "Blood in the Air" is the only chapter title that fits. The "blood" aspect is self evident. "In the air" is likely metaphorical, once Egwene and company realize there is a problem via dead bodies or signs of bloody struggles.

Hope that helps.

Bouke de Boer
99. Bouke
Am I the only one seeing t1D777 in the text? About halfway through the page. Weird...
Barry T
100. blindillusion
Yep. It's right after t1. I suppose we can assume the ToG is located in the same time/place as the Terminator Wars. Ergo, when saying the Blight has a _____ in it, the _____ is obviously a Skynet Ops Center....

So, we can now assume the DO is Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Rand is so screwed....
Bouke de Boer
101. Bouke
I always read the DO all caps statements as being said with a thick Austrian accent. Should have picked up the clues earlier...
I killed Asmodean
102. Lothahnus
The question is how many codes are there. by the look of it there are a whole hell of a lot more then has bee revealed.
Theresa Gray
103. Terez27
There are only 40, and there are only 30 needed to unlock the secret. Brandon said that there were two left to unlock everything, including the Final Code in Venice, but it might just be one now because Peter had mercy on us and got code 18 unlocked. We'd guessed it, but they photo-locked the code at first because only two more were needed.

And someone from finally got one - wetlandernw got one for her birthday at the Seattle signing.
Bouke de Boer
104. Bouke
Based on the correct code-phrases that have been guessed:
Who or what is Shanna'har?

Do we have any clue to this?
Janet Hopkins
105. JanDSedai
Nobody knows what Shanna'har means, but I believe that it is a variation of Sharra. Which would validate my theory that Demandred is in Sharra!
Daniel Goss
107. Beren
Do we know what chapter (number) of ToM this is?
Roger Powell
108. forkroot
Beren - Based on how Tor handled TGS, it wouldn't be Chapter 1 (they'll put that on or Chapter 2 (they'll put the audiobook version of that out.)

So it's likely anywhere from Chapter 3 to 10, depending on when we get our first catch-up on Mat's storyline (it seems to imply that there were no Mat chapters previously as it hsa explanations for the Band's placement, etc.)

I can see why Brandon chose it: It features a cliffhanger ending (which is typical BWS - seems like every Mistborn chapter was like that.)
Bouke de Boer
109. Bouke
It need not be the actual end of the chapter... This could have just been a cut-off point that suits the fact that this is a preview.

BTW, I thought that this would be an 'extra', instead of an exerpt from the book...
James Hogan
111. Sonofthunder
Loved it. And I have to say, I think for ToM I'll be much more able to just enjoy Brandon's voice telling the WoT rather than expecting RJ's voice, if my enjoyment at reading this segment was any indication!!
Theresa Gray
112. Terez27
In case you guys haven't noticed yet, the chapter # was 8.

Are spoilers kosher on this thread now? I suppose we could discuss ch. 8 here and the prologue on the pre-order thread when it comes out?
Irene Gallo
113. Irene
@112: just a few more days. ;-) We'll make you guys a new thread to talk “spoilers thus far.”
Janet Hopkins
114. JanDSedai
Well, there are not really any spoilers in this excerpt. This is a re-establishment chapter, to help casual readers remember the characters and where they are. So, since I hate the "what has gone before" summaries most multi-volume series use, this is really my cup of tea.

Mat is in Camelyn with the entire band. (Which we knew.)
Mat is waffling on opening the letter from Verin. (Which we suspected.)
Thom wants Mat to go to the Tower of Genjhi. (Still)
Mat wants Elayne to manufacture his dragons. (Well, duh!)
The Aes Sedai with him are actually telling him where they are going. (Now, that's a surprise!)

As several people have mentioned, BWS got the 'voice' for Mat just right. He thinks about his 'winning ways', and never notices the women trying to manipulate him! Or not, as in the case of the gambling woman. The only quibble I have is when Mat gave the horses to the Aes Sedai. It looks too much like a gift. Mat would have rationalized it in his head, so that there was a semi-logical reason for giving them the horses. But a gift? To Aes Sedai?! Not Mat!
115. birgit
The only quibble I have is when Mat gave the horses to the Aes Sedai. It looks too much like a gift. Mat would have rationalized it in his head, so that there was a semi-logical reason for giving them the horses. But a gift? To Aes Sedai?! Not Mat!

He wants to get them away from the gholam.
Janet Hopkins
116. JanDSedai
Well, yes, but he never thinks that in the text. He could have justified it by saying/thinking that with horses they could get far enough away so that they wouldn't come running back to him, or that it would help him gain an entry to Elayne by helping the AS, or something. But he is truly helping them out of the goodness of his heart, and the Mat I know would not admit that to himself.
Wayne Wilson
117. stylusmobilus
'Blood In The Air'

Looking at the end of that Great Hunt chapter, this might be either the next chapter or next Mat POV.


Maybe the 'finn city? Another name for Shara does sound good. How about a to'raken's name?
118. Freelancer
Everybody is glowing about this chapter having Mat's "voice" more correct. I actually have a disconnect here with the Mat I know thus far. Here, his thoughts are too "expository" for me. We know Mat, we get his motives and his self-delusions, they needn't be spelled out so thoroughly. Will discuss details when spoilery space is provided...
Jonathan Levy
119. JonathanLevy
...semi-logical reason for giving them the horses. But a gift?

Did they look them in the mouth? ;)
Antoni Ivanov
120. tonka
He almost gave his medallion one time to Elayne (she refuse it).If he can part with his medallion a few horses to an Aes Sedai that is genuinely grateful is not big deal, right ?
Alice Arneson
121. Wetlandernw
I must admit, I didn't expect chapter 8! It was obvious quite a while back that it wasn't chapter one, because it started with "Mat." I thought it might be chapter 2. Anyway, it was a good choice; nothing terribly new or spoilery about it, but a yummy little taste of things to come.

I still haven't gotten around to transcribing all my notes and recordings from the signing last week, but thought I'd share a couple of cool tidbits here. (These are not direct quotes; I'll do those as soon as I can.)

One: someone asked about the title, "That's TowerS, plural, right?" Brandon replied that yes, it's plural; the Towers of Midnight are a specific structure/complex in Seanchan. Then, in a very Brandon-the-fan-style answer, he added that in his mind, the working title of the book was "The Three Towers." He noted the dual pun of this being the second of three humongous books, as well as the three towers we expect to see. He then added that, as it turned out, it's a good thing that title was never made public, because it wouldn't really be accurate any more. So... chew on that one. (I really need to go find his exact wording on that; maybe yet tonight.)

I asked him if my speculations on Cadsuane (the fanfic from a couple months ago) were anywhere close to correct, and his answer was (at least to me) very intriguing. He said that he couldn't really answer that at this point. It's still up to Harriet to decide whether the prequels would be written or not, and she may not decide that for a while. However, if they are written, some of that backstory would be part of the prequels and he wouldn't want to spoil it. The same goes for Verin's history; he'd love to answer questions about it, but can't reveal anything yet. (I'm paraphrasing madly here, going on my recollection rather than parsing through all that recording to get the exact wording.) Anyway, I got the distinct impression that, while we may learn a little more about both characters in the remaining two books, we won't get much more on their history until either the prequels are written, or Harriet chooses to include it in the Encyclopedia.

One more: The Encyclopedia is a definite plan. It will probably be a ginormous book, but we can definitely expect to see it in a few years. The prequels, however, are (obviously) much less certain. One reason is that the notes and outlines are much less extensive, so there would be a lot more "making it up" to be done; at this stage, neither he nor Harriet are entirely comfortable with that. However, if Harriet does decide to try them and asks him to do the writing, he will definitely say yes.

And I still can't quite believe he gave me a code!! I can't begin to describe how fun that was.
Justin Levitt
122. TyranAmiros
Wetlander@121: That's awesome that you got to ask so many question! I'm really excited for the encyclopedia.

On Shanna'har:
My bet is that it's about either the Borderlands or the Forsaken. Unless 'shanna' is completely unrelated to 'shan', shanna'har would mean something like "hand to the lord" in the Old Tongue. This, combined with the fact that the Borderlanders already use the possibly-related term 'dai'shan', makes me thing it could mean something in the Borderlands like "captain general" or "page (apprenticed knight)". I guess to me it sounds more like a title than a location.
diane heath
123. jadelollipop
Re: The dice in Mat's head....I think it is because we are coming to the moment of truth. Two AS on scales. (Verin and Moraine) ...Two letters with tasks. Which one will he fulfill....
john massey
124. subwoofer

Is this the tor spoilerific thread?

Hi, allow myself to introduce myself...

I killed Asmodean
125. Lothahnus
Mat gave the horses to the aes sedia because she finally show respect and did not demand it from him. Thats all Mat ever wanted is for people to treat him like any other person and not look down on him or up to him for that matter. Thats why he was generous with the horses.
Bonnie Andrews
126. misfortuona
So this is where people are talking about the Seven Striped Lass.
I loved this little teaser, and I want November to get here now. J. Dauro, you should have planned a JCon wedding. BTW, I didn't get my invitation. Just saying.
Wetlandernw I can't wait to see the details from your notes if those are the highlights. I'm especially excited about the Cadsuane comments. You have been channelling her.

Okay chapter. I'm loving Mat as the reformed Casanova. Well done BWS. Lothahnus, I think you've hit it with the reason behind the horses. Mat has always been generous, as long as people don't demand things from him.
Plus he actually likes Teslyn, and she's done the unthinkable (for an Aes Sedai) she's thanked him and Admitted that she owes him.
Why in the Light wouldn't he offer her horses?

Mis-can't wait till November
Roger Powell
127. forkroot
It's curious that Teslyn, Joline, and Edesina even need horses. Apparently Verin must have refused to show them the weave for a gateway (even if the three were too weak to make a gateway, they could link and make one.)

Given how important Traveling is, I am sure the three would have watched Verin closely, unless explicitly told that they couldn't.

OK - So why wouldn't Verin show them the weave? Perhaps it's because one of three was known by Verin to be Black Ajah? Edesina maybe?
Jay Dauro
128. J.Dauro
Sorry about that. The wedding is a very small thing, just immediate family. But we are planning to be at JordanCon, and will do some partying there.

And it appears that all three (Joline, Teslyn and Edesina) are stronger than Verin.   So it could be that one is Black, or it could be that Verin does not want them back in the Tower too quickly. Or maybe she is trying to get them to stay with Mat. (although in that case she would have probably done a better job of it.)  Heck, she would manipulate anyone to meet her ends.
Sam Mickel
129. Samadai
J. Dauro,
There are quite a few of us going to be at Jordancon next year. We will need a big bunker for the party.

I don't know that any of the three are black, why send a black sister to the weakest ruler of Randland. There is no way they can influence anything
I killed Asmodean
130. Wortmauer
On Mat's voice and whether BS hit it this time:

Better. Getting better. I quite enjoyed the chapter, there were some nice moments. But I still have a problem with the idioms. Not "bloody ashes" without the blood, I don't even notice that one. For one thing we hear about Randland foul language more than we actually hear it. For another, I know I have a way of picking up phrases that I use a lot for a year or two, then get tired of them. All the time.

No, what bugs me about BS's use of idiom is ... harder to explain. But basically I think RJ did a great job of coming up with expressions that simultaneously are easy to interpret, yet because we don't use the same expression in English, it sounds like it may have actually been translated from the Vulgar Tongue. The Sea Folk were "the fly in the cream pitcher." Those who think they can outwit Mat's da in horse trading tend to get "the greasy end of the stick." I love those, it's obvious what they mean but I don't hear them in real life.

But BS's idioms? Even a phrase as simple as "That was saying a lot", I think RJ would have rephrased. Ditto "breaking hearts," or "set their hearts fluttering and they would get all weak in the knees." And how about this one? "Then he could win all he liked, thank you very much." Seriously? Thank you very much? And Mat's memory has "more holes than one of Jori Congar's alibis". Cute, but that's not the sort of comparison Mat would have made, and besides, Perrin is the one hanging out with Jori Congar these days. Mat rarely thinks of the TR citizens, probably because of that memory full of holes.

"I kind of like Verin" gets a whole (short) paragraph of rant. "Kind of" is perhaps my least favorite of BS's isms. I didn't like it when Elend "Ace" Venture used to say it all the time, and I don't think Mat should either. It is jarring in a world where people use fool as an adjective.

I also don't think Mat has ever been "Matrim Cauthon" in his own head. When he wants to grumble to himself about his circumstances, he's always Mat Cauthon. Although that might just be Tuon on the brain.

Vocabulary choices get to me too. There is "tip" / "tipping". I don't think RJ ever used that term. Or ever called anything a "monster", though goodness knows, between Seanchan and the Blight, there are plenty of 'em to go around. When Thom confirms that the Tower is "several hundred miles northwest of Whitebridge", shouldn't he have expressed it in leagues? They always use leagues when it's more than a couple of miles.

And, gosh, does every thought need a simile or a snarky theory? I'm not even going to count them, but there are way too many similes in the text, like two raisins in every spoonful of tapioca pudding. They are all too often a vehicle for Lightsong-style humor, i.e., a stand-up trying too hard, which just doesn't belong anywhere near a Mat POV.

Why does all this bother me? It just does. Too-modern or ill-fitting verbiage in the middle of the prose just takes me out of the story. I suppose I should be grateful Mat and his companions never say "whatever" or "have a nice day."
Tasneem Gould
131. Latecomer
First of all, thank you to everyone involved for publishing the exerpt. I was too late to hear about, and too far to paricipate in the Great Hunt but sounds like a lot of fun was had by all.

I did enjoy reading the chapter as well and great to know that the scene is set, and the action is about to start. I'm also thrilled that the gholam is being dealt with before the ToG plotline takes off, as that really needs to be tied up.

130. Wortmauer - I agree that the writing has got very modern in its phraseology and idioms gone wild style. However, I am bearing in mind that BwS said from the outset that he would not copy RJ's style, but incorporate the story within his storytelling style. And this (as you noted referencing other books) is how he writes.

Now I am certainly thrilled that I will be able to get to the end of this massive story that I have invested so much of my time, thought and emotion into, even though RJ is not here to complete it. But my lingering goodwill from the last 11 books is the only reason I am continuing with the next 3.

I did read all other BwS works before TGS to get a feel of his writing. It works - for his own stories. But I am finding it increasingly harder to read the WOT in this style. When TGS came out, I rushed through it for the story, and the action in it was certainly complelling enough that the style didn't jar too much (although I do mourn the changes).

However I have been re-reading TGS in preparation for tToM and finding it really hard going. I find it hard to plough through more than a chapter at a time. The change in style leaps out at me constantly - not something I am looking for, but always something so very different to the style I am used to for WOT. I think the difference has been exacerbated by having just read all RJ's books just before TGS, and the dissonance is particulalry loud because of this.

So thanks to BwS for completing the books, and I do appreciate the effort you are going to on our behalf. And of course you are just doing what you always said you would do.

I guess I'll just have to accept that the world of WOT has a different voice and suck it up :)

Go Light!
Barry T
132. blindillusion
Well, no:

Tip/Tipping is not used by Mr Jordan.

Though Trollocs are called "monsters". It is also used to describe several people through the novels.

And a search for "hundred miles" brought up 80 results within the novels.

"Thank you very much" is used a total of 9 times in the novels (to include ToM), though I do not know the context with which each is used.

Just a quick search. But now I must be going. Hope this helps.
Alice Arneson
133. Wetlandernw
blindillusion @132 re: Wortmauer @130 - How about this one, from TFoH:
Mat was already up on his gelding, Pips, with his wide-brimmed had pulled down and the butt of that odd spear resting on his stirrup. As usual, his high-collared green coat looked slept in. She had avoided his dreams. One of the Maidens, a very tall golden-haired woman, gave Mat a roguish grin that seemed to embarrass him. And well it should; she was much too old for him. Egwene sniffed. I know very well what he was dreaming about, thank you very much! She only reined in beside him to look around for Aviendha.

Wortmauer, may I suggest you use a tool like IdealSeek to check and see whether RJ used the phrase (as in this example, in nearly identical fashion) before you accuse Brandon of a poor choice of idiom? It took me all of about one and a half minutes to prove your assumption false.
Barry T
134. blindillusion
IdealSeek FTW!!

Wetlander, that's what I used as well. I just didn't have time to grab my books for a more detailed search.
Tess Laird
135. thewindrose
I for one am curious about who got 'Gholam'd'(tis a word now:)) Was it someone we knew - ie Olver, Lopin, Talmanes or unknown serving person(aka red shirt or skirt;)? I am going with a minor character here, or at the most Lopin.

To read these final three books as RJ would have written them is a fallacy of compostion, don't put yourself there. It will lead to ghostwriting and then we will all be trapped in Hinderstap, and only Jonathan Levy will get us out of there;)

I think that jadalollipop has a good idea with looking at:
Re: The dice in Mat's head....I think it is because we are coming to the moment of truth. Two AS on scales. (Verin and Moraine) ...Two letters with tasks. Which one will he fulfill....

Very good ideas to be pondering!

Last but not at all least - I wish you and your bride well J.Duaro!!

Alice Arneson
136. Wetlandernw
blindillusion @134 - :) That's why it only took 1.5 minutes - if I had to physically look through all the chapters it would have taken much longer. What can I say - I know I'm going to make myself look stupid sometimes, but I'd rather not do it when it could be prevented by a couple of minutes on the internet.
Theresa Gray
137. Terez27
windrose - Probably Lopin, but probably not the gholam, actually.
I killed Asmodean
138. Lothahnus
I believe the dice are about the gholam.
Theresa Gray
139. Terez27
Indeed, they were. That much was clear. What's especially interesting is that nothing like that has ever happened before - closest thing was Comar and the weights shifting - so it must be pretty hugely important.
I killed Asmodean
140. Wortmauer
Various@132-136: Mea culpa, I didn't think about the possibility of full text searches on the Internets. It seems my memory for phrases Jordan used does not perfectly cover a corpus of 12 novels. Who knew?

By the way, I was puzzled at all the hating on "saidared" from TGS. I know it's a Brandonlogism, but when I read it I smiled and thought it was exactly the sort of word Mat might splutter.

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