Monday, May 31, 2010

Robert Jordan - New Spring

Grade: B
" For three days battle has raged in the snow around the great city of Tar Valon. In the city, a Foretelling of the future is uttered. On the slopes of Dragonmount, the immense mountain that looms over the city, is born an infant prophesied to change the world. That child must be found before the forces of the Shadow have an opportunity to kill him."

New Spring (A Wheel of Time Prequel Novel)I promise this is the last Robert Jordan review in a while. I only put this up here as I had named this earlier while mini-blogging on my Planned Reading. There is also a graphic novel by the same name, which I don't plan on reading.

I read this on my kindle, and this was my second reading. I don't think this affected my review in any way. New Spring is a prequel to the Wheel of Time, set about 20 years in the past (by my vague reckoning), when Moraine and Siuan are still Accepted.
I remember reading this earlier and liking a few scenes - particularly their studies as Accepted, and their Aes Sedai testing. RJ describes both at length, adding to the slow-paced feel of this book. Even though the Dragon Reborn had just been birthed, I didn't feel the sense of impending doom and urgency that prevail in the main books.

Having read and reviewed The Gathering Storm recently (here), I wanted to see if New Spring changed in the context of new information. Thank Goodness, it did! Knowing the Black Ajah added a thrill, a frisson, to my reading, just as knowing that Lan and Moraine would bond eventually would have added to yours. You can see the cracks forming in Tar Valon and The White Tower already, leading up to the breaking of the tower. As always, there were too many descriptions of clothes for my tastes, but I stuck to my long-standing tradition of skipping these bits.

Overall, I missed RJ's epic battle scenes - they were limited to Lan's scenes. The book also digressed from the main plotline, and added months to RJ's release of his next book at the time. Still don't think it was worth it. Interestingly enough, I found RJ and Brandon Sanderson's The Gathering Storm to be far better than this work.
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