The Eye of the World (Wheel of Time Series #1)

The Eye of the World (Wheel of Time Series #1)

4.6 1809
by Robert Jordan, Michael Kramer, Kate Reading
     
 

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Still think Robert Jordan is the hero of Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls? Not sure what all the hype's about? If you've yet to experience the magic, mystery, excitement, and splendor of Robert Jordan's spectacular Wheel of Time fantasy series, now's your chance to get hooked, as have millions of fans worldwide. It all began with The Eye of the World,…  See more details below

Overview

Still think Robert Jordan is the hero of Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls? Not sure what all the hype's about? If you've yet to experience the magic, mystery, excitement, and splendor of Robert Jordan's spectacular Wheel of Time fantasy series, now's your chance to get hooked, as have millions of fans worldwide. It all began with The Eye of the World, which launched the complex, spellbinding adventures of Rand, Egwene, Moiraine, Lan, and so many others. Find out why The New York Times recently said, "Robert Jordan has come to dominate the world that Tolkien began to reveal."

Editorial Reviews

bn.com editor
According to a 1996 New York Times article, "Robert Jordan has come to dominate the world that Tolkien began to reveal." Robert Jordan is hands-down the most widely read and talked-about fantasy author writing today. His mammoth, multivolume New York Times bestselling Wheel of Time series has sold more millions of copies to date. Book One of the Wheel of Time is The Eye of the World, a staggeringly complex and enjoyable adventure that's not without its own cast of unforgettable characters: Rand, a simple sheepherder who is stalked by an evil he does not yet understand; Egwene, Rand's love interest, who happens to possess her own very special gift; Moraine, the beautiful but possibly dangerous member of a powerful legion of sorceresses called Aes Sedai; and Lan, Moraine's fearless companion and guardian.

--Andrew LeCount

From the Publisher

“Jordan has come to dominate the world Tolkien began to reveal.” —The New York Times
Orson Scott Card
Robert Jordan's The Eye of the World proves that there's still plenty of life in the ancient tradition of epic fantasy. Jordan has a powerful vision of good and evil— but what strikes me as most pleasurable about The Eye of the World is all the fascinating people moving through a rich and interesting world.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780736635349
Publisher:
Books on Tape, Inc.
Publication date:
01/01/1996
Series:
Wheel of Time Series, #1
Edition description:
Unabridged

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The Eye of the World


By Robert Jordan

Tom Doherty Associates

Copyright © 1990 The Bandersnatch Group, Inc.
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-4299-5981-0



CHAPTER 1

An Empty Road


The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass, leaving memories that become legend. Legend fades to myth, and even myth is long forgotten when the Age that gave it birth comes again. In one Age, called the Third Age by some, an Age yet to come, an Age long past, a wind rose in the Mountains of Mist. The wind was not the beginning. There are neither beginnings nor endings to the turning of the Wheel of Time. But it was a beginning.

Born below the ever cloud-capped peaks that gave the mountains their name, the wind blew east, out across the Sand Hills, once the shore of a great ocean, before the Breaking of the World. Down it flailed into the Two Rivers, into the tangled forest called the Westwood, and beat at two men walking with a cart and horse down the rock-strewn track called the Quarry Road. For all that spring should have come a good month since, the wind carried an icy chill as if it would rather bear snow.

Gusts plastered Rand al'Thor's cloak to his back, whipped the earth-colored wool around his legs, then streamed it out behind him. He wished his coat were heavier, or that he had worn an extra shirt. Half the time when he tried to tug the cloak back around him it caught on the quiver swinging at his hip. Trying to hold the cloak one-handed did not do much good anyway; he had his bow in the other, an arrow nocked and ready to draw.

As a particularly strong blast tugged the cloak out of his hand, he glanced at his father over the back of the shaggy brown mare. He felt a little foolish about wanting to reassure himself that Tam was still there, but it was that kind of day. The wind howled when it rose, but aside from that, quiet lay heavy on the land. The soft creak of the axle sounded loud by comparison. No birds sang in the forest, no squirrels chittered from a branch. Not that he expected them, really; not this spring.

Only trees that kept leaf or needle through the winter had any green about them. Snarls of last year's bramble spread brown webs over stone outcrops under the trees. Nettles numbered most among the few weeds; the rest were the sorts with sharp burrs or thorns, or stinkweed, which left a rank smell on the unwary boot that crushed it. Scattered white patches of snow still dotted the ground where tight clumps of trees kept deep shade. Where sunlight did reach, it held neither strength nor warmth. The pale sun sat above the trees to the east, but its light was crisply dark, as if mixed with shadow. It was an awkward morning, made for unpleasant thoughts.

Without thinking he touched the nock of the arrow; it was ready to draw to his cheek in one smooth movement, the way Tam had taught him. Winter had been bad enough on the farms, worse than even the oldest folk remembered, but it must have been harsher still in the mountains, if the number of wolves driven down into the Two Rivers was any guide. Wolves raided the sheep pens and chewed their way into barns to get the cattle and horses. Bears had been after the sheep, too, where a bear had not been seen in years. It was no longer safe to be out after dark. Men were the prey as often as sheep, and the sun did not always have to be down.

Tam was taking steady strides on the other side of Bela, using his spear as a walking staff, ignoring the wind that made his brown cloak flap like a banner. Now and again he touched the mare's flank lightly, to remind her to keep moving. With his thick chest and broad face, he was a pillar of reality in that morning, like a stone in the middle of a drifting dream. His sun-roughened cheeks might be lined and his hair have only a sprinkling of black among the gray, but there was a solidness to him, as though a flood could wash around him without uprooting his feet. He stumped down the road now impassively. Wolves and bears were all very well, his manner said, things that any man who kept sheep must be aware of, but they had best not try to stop Tam al'Thor getting to Emond's Field.

With a guilty start Rand returned to watching his side of the road, Tam's matter-of-factness reminding him of his task. He was a head taller than his father, taller than anyone else in the district, and had little of Tam in him physically, except perhaps for a breadth of shoulder. Gray eyes and the reddish tinge to his hair came from his mother, so Tam said. She had been an outlander, and Rand remembered little of her aside from a smiling face, though he did put flowers on her grave every year, at Bel Tine, in the spring, and at Sunday, in the summer.

Two small casks of Tam's apple brandy rested in the lurching cart, and eight larger barrels of apple cider, only slightly hard after a winter's curing. Tam delivered the same every year to the Winespring Inn for use during Bel Tine, and he had declared that it would take more than wolves or a cold wind to stop him this spring. Even so they had not been to the village for weeks. Not even Tam traveled much these days. But Tam had given his word about the brandy and cider, even if he had waited to make delivery until the day before Festival. Keeping his word was important to Tam. Rand was just glad to get away from the farm, almost as glad as about the coming of Bel Tine.

As Rand watched his side of the road, the feeling grew in him that he was being watched. For a while he tried to shrug it off. Nothing moved or made a sound among the trees, except the wind. But the feeling not only persisted, it grew stronger. The hairs on his arms stirred; his skin prickled as if it itched on the inside.

He shifted his bow irritably to rub at his arms, and told himself to stop letting fancies take him. There was nothing in the woods on his side of the road, and Tam would have spoken if there had been anything on the other. He glanced over his shoulder ... and blinked. Not more than twenty spans back down the road a cloaked figure on horseback followed them, horse and rider alike black, dull and ungleaming.

It was more habit than anything else that kept him walking backward alongside the cart even while he looked.

The rider's cloak covered him to his boot tops, the cowl tugged well forward so no part of him showed. Vaguely Rand thought there was something odd about the horseman, but it was the shadowed opening of the hood that fascinated him. He could see only the vaguest outlines of a face, but he had the feeling he was looking right into the rider's eyes. And he could not look away. Queasiness settled in his stomach. There was only shadow to see in the hood, but he felt hatred as sharply as if he could see a snarling face, hatred for everything that lived. Hatred for him most of all, for him above all things.

Abruptly a stone caught his heel and he stumbled, breaking his eyes away from the dark horseman. His bow dropped to the road, and only an outthrust hand grabbing Bela's harness saved him from falling flat on his back. With a startled snort the mare stopped, twisting her head to see what had caught her.

Tam frowned over Bela's back at him. "Are you all right, lad?"

"A rider," Rand said breathlessly, pulling himself upright. "A stranger, following us."

"Where?" The older man lifted his broad-bladed spear and peered back warily.

"There, down the...." Rand's words trailed off as he turned to point. The road behind was empty. Disbelieving, he stared into the forest on both sides of the road. Bare-branched trees offered no hiding place, but there was not a glimmer of horse or horseman. He met his father's questioning gaze. "He was there. A man in a black cloak, on a black horse."

"I wouldn't doubt your word, lad, but where has he gone?"

"I don't know. But he was there." He snatched up the fallen bow and arrow, hastily checked the fletching before renocking, and half drew before letting the bowstring relax. There was nothing to aim at. "He was."

Tam shook his grizzled head. "If you say so, lad. Come on, then. A horse leaves hoofprints, even on this ground." He started toward the rear of the cart, his cloak whipping in the wind. "If we find them, we'll know for a fact he was there. If not ... well, these are days to make a man think he's seeing things."

Abruptly Rand realized what had been odd about the horseman, aside from his being there at all. The wind that beat at Tam and him had not so much as shifted a fold of that black cloak. His mouth was suddenly dry. He must have imagined it. His father was right; this was a morning to prickle a man's imagination. But he did not believe it. Only, how did he tell his father that the man who had apparently vanished into air wore a cloak the wind did not touch?

With a worried frown he peered into the woods around them; it looked different than it ever had before. Almost since he was old enough to walk, he had run loose in the forest. The ponds and streams of the Waterwood, beyond the last farms east of Emond's Field, were where he had learned to swim. He had explored into the Sand Hills — which many in the Two Rivers said was bad luck — and once he had even gone to the very foot of the Mountains of Mist, him and his closest friends, Mat Cauthon and Perrin Aybara. That was a lot further afield than most people in Emond's Field ever went; to them a journey to the next village, up to Watch Hill or down to Deven Ride, was a big event. Nowhere in all of that had he found a place that made him afraid. Today, though, the Westwood was not the place he remembered. A man who could disappear so suddenly could reappear just as suddenly, maybe even right beside them.

"No, father, there's no need." When Tam stopped in surprise, Rand covered his flush by tugging at the hood of his cloak. "You're probably right. No point looking for what isn't there, not when we can use the time getting on to the village and out of this wind."

"I could do with a pipe," Tam said slowly, "and a mug of ale where it's warm." Abruptly he gave a broad grin. "And I expect you're eager to see Egwene."

Rand managed a weak smile. Of all things he might want to think about right then, the Mayor's daughter was far down the list. He did not need any more confusion. For the past year she had been making him increasingly jittery whenever they were together. Worse, she did not even seem to be aware of it. No, he certainly did not want to add Egwene to his thoughts.

He was hoping his father had not noticed he was afraid when Tam said, "Remember the flame, lad, and the void."

It was an odd thing Tam had taught him. Concentrate on a single flame and feed all your passions into it — fear, hate, anger — until your mind became empty. Become one with the void, Tam said, and you could do anything. Nobody else in Emond's Field talked that way. But Tam won the archery competition at Bel Tine every year with his flame and his void. Rand thought he might have a chance at placing this year himself, if he could manage to hold onto the void. For Tam to bring it up now meant he had noticed, but he said nothing more about it.

Tam clucked Bela into motion once more, and they resumed their journey, the older man striding along as if nothing untoward had happened and nothing untoward could. Rand wished he could imitate him. He tried forming the emptiness in his mind, but it kept slipping away into images of the black-cloaked horseman.

He wanted to believe that Tam was right, that the rider had just been his imagination, but he could remember that feeling of hatred too well. There had been someone. And that someone had meant him harm. He did not stop looking back until the high-peaked, thatched roofs of Emond's Field surrounded him.

The village lay close onto the Westwood, the forest gradually thinning until the last few trees stood actually among the stout frame houses. The land sloped gently down to the east. Though not without patches of woods, farms and hedge-bordered fields and pastures quilted the land beyond the village all the way to the Waterwood and its tangle of streams and ponds. The land to the west was just as fertile, and the pastures there lush in most years, but only a handful of farms could be found in the Westwood. Even those few dwindled to none miles short of the Sand Hills, not to mention the Mountains of Mist, which rose above the Westwood treetops, distant but in plain sight from Emond's Field. Some said the land was too rocky, as if there were not rocks everywhere in the Two Rivers, and others said it was hard-luck land. A few muttered that there was no point getting any closer to the mountains than needs be. Whatever the reasons, only the hardiest men farmed in the Westwood.

Small children and dogs dodged around the cart in whooping swarms once it passed the first row of houses. Bela plodded on patiently, ignoring the yelling youngsters who tumbled under her nose, playing tag and rolling hoops. In the last months there had been little of play or laughter from the children; even when the weather had slackened enough to let children out, fear of wolves kept them in. It seemed the approach of Bel Tine had taught them how to play again.

Festival had affected the adults as well. Broad shutters were thrown back, and in almost every house the goodwife stood in a window, apron tied about her and long-braided hair done up in a kerchief, shaking sheets or hanging mattresses over the windowsills. Whether or not leaves had appeared on the trees, no woman would let Bel Tine come before her spring cleaning was done. In every yard rugs hung from stretched lines, and children who had not been quick enough to run free in the streets instead vented their frustration on the carpets with wicker beaters. On roof after roof the goodman of the house clambered about, checking the thatch to see if the winter's damage meant calling on old Cenn Buie, the thatcher.

Several times Tam paused to engage one man or another in brief conversation. Since he and Rand had not been off the farm for weeks, everyone wanted to catch up on how things were out that way. Few Westwood men had been in. Tam spoke of damage from winter storms, each one worse than the one before, and stillborn lambs, of brown fields where crops should be sprouting and pastures greening, of ravens flocking in where songbirds had come in years before. Grim talk, with preparations for Bel Tine going on all around them, and much shaking of heads. It was the same on all sides.

Most of the men rolled their shoulders and said, "Well, we'll survive, the Light willing." Some grinned and added, "And if the Light doesn't will, we'll still survive."

That was the way of most Two Rivers people. People who had to watch the hail beat their crops or the wolves take their lambs, and start over, no matter how many years it happened, did not give up easily. Most of those who did were long since gone.

Tam would not have stopped for Wit Congar if the man had not come out into the street so they had to halt or let Bela run over him. The Congars — and the Coplins; the two families were so intermarried no one really knew where one family let off and the other began — were known from Watch Hill to Deven Ride, and maybe as far as Taren Ferry, as complainers and troublemakers.

"I have to get this to Bran al'Vere, Wit," Tam said, nodding to the barrels in the cart, but the scrawny man held his ground with a sour expression on his face. He had been sprawled on his front steps, not up on his roof, though the thatch looked as if it badly needed Master Buie's attention. He never seemed ready to start over, or to finish what he started the first time. Most of the Coplins and Congars were like that, those who were not worse.

"What are we going to do about Nynaeve, al'Thor?" Congar demanded. "We can't have a Wisdom like that for Emond's Field."

Tam sighed heavily. "It's not our place, Wit. The Wisdom is women's business."

"Well, we'd better do something, al'Thor. She said we'd have a mild winter. And a good harvest. Now you ask her what she hears on the wind, and she just scowls at you and stomps off."

"If you asked her the way you usually do, Wit," Tam said patiently, "you're lucky she didn't thump you with that stick she carries. Now if you don't mind, this brandy —"

"Nynaeve al'Meara is just too young to be Wisdom, al'Thor. If the Women's Circle won't do something, then the Village Council has to."

"What business of yours is the Wisdom, Wit Congar?" roared a woman's voice. Wit flinched as his wife marched out of the house. Daise Congar was twice as wide as Wit, a hard-faced woman without an ounce of fat on her. She glared at him with her fists on her hips. "You try meddling in Women's Circle business, and see how you like eating your own cooking. Which you won't do in my kitchen. And washing your own clothes and making your own bed. Which won't be under my roof."


(Continues...)

Excerpted from The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan. Copyright © 1990 The Bandersnatch Group, Inc.. Excerpted by permission of Tom Doherty Associates.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Meet the Author

Robert Jordan was born in 1948 in Charleston, South Carolina. He taught himself to read when he was four with the incidental aid of a twelve-years-older brother, and was tackling Mark Twain and Jules Verne by five. He is a graduate of The Citadel, the Military College of South Carolina, with a degree in physics. He served two tours in Vietnam with the U.S. Army; among his decorations are the Distinguished Flying Cross with bronze oak leaf cluster, the Bronze Star with "V" and bronze oak leaf cluster, and two Vietnamese Gallantry Crosses with palm. A history buff, he has also written dance and theater criticism and enjoyed the outdoor sports of hunting, fishing, and sailing, and the indoor sports of poker, chess, pool, and pipe collecting.

Robert Jordan began writing in 1977 and went on to write The Wheel of Time®, one of the most important and best selling series in the history of fantasy publishing with over 14 million copies sold in North America, and countless more sold abroad.

Robert Jordan died on September 16, 2007, after a courageous battle with the rare blood disease amyloidosis.

 

Kate Reading is the recipient of multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards and has been named by AudioFile magazine as a “Voice of the Century,” as well as the Best Voice in Science Fiction & Fantasy in 2008 and 2009. Her audiobook credits include reading for such authors as Jane Austen, Robert Jordan, Edith Wharton, and Sophie Kinsella.  She has performed at numerous theaters in Washington D.C. and received a Helen Hayes Award for her performance in Aunt Dan and Lemon.

 

Michael Kramer has narrated over 100 audiobooks for many bestselling authors. He read all of Robert Jordan’s epic Wheel of Time fantasy-adventure series as well as Brandon Sanderson’s The Stormlight Archive series. He received AudioFile magazine's Earphones Award for the Kent Family series by John Jakes and for Alan Fulsom's The Day After Tomorrow. Known for his “spot-on character portraits and accents, and his resonant, well-tempered voice” (AudioFile), his work includes recording books for the Library of Congress’s Talking Books program for the blind and physically handicapped.

 

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Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
October 17, 1948
Date of Death:
September 16, 2007
Place of Birth:
Charleston, South Carolina
Place of Death:
Charleston, South Carolina
Education:
B.S. in physics, The Citadel, 1974
Website:
http://www.tor.com/Jordan/

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The Eye of the World (Wheel of Time Series #1) 4.6 out of 5 based on 6 ratings. 1809 reviews.
bryanohio More than 1 year ago
even if you do not read another book in the wheel of time series, the eye of the world is quite satisfying as a self contained masterpiece as well. that being said, read the whole series! you will not regret it. the sweeping scope, masterful writing style, and epic story are unrivaled. from the first paragraph you will find yourself drawn in, and the fleshed out characters will keep you hooked. robert jordan takes a genre that is often not taken seriously and gives it literary credibility. though he pays homage to his predecessors, like tolkien, in some of the imagery used, jordan not only makes the world of fantasy his own, but sets a new standard and quality at which it can be enjoyed. get it.
christian2795 More than 1 year ago
Some have criticized the late, great Robert Jordan for being overly detailed, unrealistic, and Tolkienesque. The raging popularity of George R.R. Martin has swayed fantasy fans and critics in favor of concision, gritty realism, and complexity. Clearly, that has worked for Martin, and props to him, but there are still a significant amount of us who enjoy a good dose of, well, fun in our fantasy novels. Yes, there is quite a bit of traveling. Yes, there are detailed descriptions of places and events, and detailed, somewhat repetitive descriptions of characters. Yes, a hefty chunk of this novel mirrors LOTR (which was Mr. Jordan's intention). But as one critic smartly put it, Tolkien's influence on fantasy literature (or LOTRature, as I like to call it, hee hee(: ) is so powerful that it is next to impossible to escape the foundations and rudimentary conventions that he laid down. In fact, one runs the risk of looking ridiculous if they really strain themselves trying to avoid following in Tolkien's well-traced footsteps. Robert Jordan, in full awareness, took Tolkien's model, beefed it up, and ran away with it over the course of the eleven novels that he lived to produce. The aspects of WOT that bug some people are utterly delightful to a different group of people (i.e. true fans and fantasy buffs, and not stuffy critics or champions of Martinesque realism). Now to the book. This is a long, absorbing, charming read. Rand al-Thor, who calls to memory Luke Skywalker, even if he is not nearly as revolutionary or distinctive, is an acceptable hero, as one honestly desires to watch him grow and mature as the story progresses. Characters like Mat, Perrin, Moiraine, Lan, Egwene, Nynaeve, and Loial all have agendas of their own, and so they are equally fascinating to watch. The story is simple, but charmingly told, and wonderfully evocative, so occasional long, slow stretches are not too terribly distracting. Finishing this book, and seeing the size and number of the other books gives one the wonderful feeling of being in for a long, cozy, and thrilling ride. The writing is great, and anyone who says otherwise is either nitpicking, or lamenting the absence of gratuitous sex scenes, bastards, tyrannical midgets, and graphic, gory battle sequences. Instead, one gets romance (real romance?? Imagine that!!), dashing heroes, dastardly villains, and exciting battles and skirmishes. If you cherish those things, then pick up this book and get lost in this world.
HouseOfReads More than 1 year ago
This series of books is one of my all-time go-to regular reads. What I really like about this world Robert Jordan (may the Light illumine him :) made is the women. Usually, fantasy books and hero journeys are Brave Young Men with ancillary women who nurture them, tempt them or occasionally heal and clean up after them. In this series, the women are heroines with equally thrilling arcs and journeys, too. Perfect series to start on vacation or snowbound weekend. Those of you who are re-readers like me, this series, beginning with this book, is a great addition to your stash. The cover art is silly, and I encourage you to ignore it.
Roll_Tide More than 1 year ago
The first 100 pages or so are incredibly boring. That being said, there are over 8,000 pages in this incredible epic. You know the saying "Be prepared for late nights" Well, once you fall into this incredibly complex world, this will be your state for at least a couple of months.
morebooksforme More than 1 year ago
The eye of the world is the beginning of a 12 book series that will end with one last book. The author died before finishing the last one, but gave extensive notes and verbal recordings of the plots and characters for the author who was to finish the series. Another fantasy autor, Brandon Sanderson, will complete this amazing saga. This first book, (not counting the prequel) starts out small, compared to the levels the others reach. That said, it is still a must read for any true fantasy fan. The scope of the characters and plot is enormous throughout the entire story. You will find yourself pulled into the story and wanting to finish all of the wheel of time books.
BookSakeBlogspot More than 1 year ago
There are two parts to this review, the quality as an audio book and the quality as a novel. Luckily both are great. The audio is well recorded and acted. There are two narrators, a male and a female. This works out great because the point of view flips from male to female across chapters. This brings up one of the great aspects of this story, great characters. Most stories tend to revolve around a single character, all other characters simply orbiting the main character. There is a main character in Eye of the World, but the other characters have such well developed personalities and goals, you can forget they aren’t the main character. The story could be boiled down to a basic prophesied hero story, but due to the characters it is so much more. It is hard to talk about this book with giving anything away. Each event is an integral weave in the entire pattern of the story. I can say that when the characters are in danger I felt tense and when they laugh, I smiled along. Every obstacle I found myself cheering the characters on while at the same time fearing the worst for them. It is a rather epic story. It is the first volume in a series of 14. I really can’t wait to dive into the rest of the series. Reviewed by Chris for Book Sake.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When I first picked up this book, it didn't look thrilling or anything like the type of book I would enjoy reading. When I first began reading, it dragged a bit at the start but as the story progressed, so did my enthusiasm to read. Some parts of this novel are slow and seem to drag on, but it is still a worthwhile read. I am now on the 3rd book in this series and it seems to be getting better and better as the series goes on.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is an amazing series. The characters are dynamic and well developed. The story is captivating. Some of the female characters parts are kind of boring to me, but that is the only negative thing about this series. Blows game of thrones out of the water.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The world starts out in full color. Every detail in character and environment is taken into consideration. It's hard not to be able to visualize anything that Jordan writes. He's very graphic in scenery, character, and thankfully emotion. He spares no detail. The plot is straightforward in this one. Kinda like just being put on a path that has no forseen ending. (Hopefully by book 15!) If you like any of the Tolkien or other fantasy writer books, then I urge you to take a good, long look at this here book. I can almost guarantee that you'll be buying the Great Hunt in no time! And thanks for reading Scooter's Opinion! :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jenny Hiatt FDENG 201:41 Spring Semester Book Review Eye of the World Review The Eye of the World, book one in the Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan, follows the story of Rand al'Thor, the son of a farmer in a small town in the Two Rivers country. He and his friends Mat Cauthon, Perrin Aybara, and others are forced to leave their land after a brutal attack by Trollocs, creatures of the Dark One. They journey with a woman, Moiraine, and her Warder, Lan. Moiraine is an Aes Sedai, someone who can wield the One Power to protect or destroy. As they travel they encounter many unexpected dangers. Through it all, it is unclear why Rand and his two best friends have been targeted by the Shadowspawn. But all of them have had disturbing dreams, suggesting that one or all of them are more than what they appear. My feelings toward it are mixed, but generally positive. It was an enjoyable, and a surprisingly fast read, considering it was over 800 pages. Overall, I think the book painted a wonderful, imaginative world, one with many more questions than answers. For every puzzles solved of explained, there were plenty of other riddles yet to be explored. It was an excellent setup for the rest of the series. The writing, although nothing spectacular, was smooth and never gave me pause or brought me out of the action. The universe seemed very well thought-out and consistent. The idea and interaction of the various creatures and factions created by Jordan were fantastic, and perhaps the most interesting part. The interactions become even more complicated with each new creature you meet, as their kind generally has their own feelings toward all of the factions introduced so far based on their cultural history. It is very well done. The fantastical aspects of this story are also very creative and entertaining, although many of them are awfully similar to their corresponding creature from The Lord of the Rings. In addition to that, I found Jordon’s characters to be extremely well written. He has created a group of sympathetic, confused, naive, brave, proud, wrongheaded (sometimes), and very human protagonists. He whisks them away from their comfortable home, a small rural village called Emond's Field, and thrusts them out into an adventure. He makes you like them and root for them and hope that, in the end, all of them make out okay. You wonder if you can really trust Moiraine, the inscrutable Aes Sedai who promises to protect them. You hope that the new friends they make on their journey -- Thom, Elayne, Loial -- also prove to be true. You get involved with them, and really get to know and care about each one. Unfortunately, the beginning was, quite frankly, boring. It took too long to get to the inciting incident, and even still I didn't become really interested until perhaps a third to halfway through the novel. Also, the writing is often heavy handed, especially when discussing nature. Jordan’s style is typical of most fantasy writers in that you sometimes wish that they could drop the eloquent description and get to the meat of the issue. In one instance, it took about half a page for Jordan to say, basically, ‘Rand stumbled and almost fell.’ Furthermore, the trite characterization of his "strong female characters" got to be irritating at times.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Why is this? No chance in heck will i spend money on a non-tangible 'book' when the free sample doesnt even let me read anything at all. It doesnt even get to the table of contents. Barnes and Noble really dropped the ball here.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I started reading this series when I was 15 and finally it has come to a conclusin and I'm now 35... and I absolutely loved it so much that I have read all 14 books 3 times! It gets better every time!!
JoeAtWork7 More than 1 year ago
I am quite a picky fantasy-fiction reader, and this book (and the whole series) has worsened that condition tremendously. I’ve read Tolkien, and for people to call Jordan Tolkienesque is an insult to Tolkien as Jordan blows his work out of the water. He didn’t carry on Tolkien’s work, he created a new and invigorating work which is unparalleled. (for you Tolkien fans out there, sorry for the extreme sacrilege :) I have read this book every year for the past 10 years and it still hasn’t gotten old. It’s the only book I’ve been able to do that with as I can’t seem to forget things I read. However, knowing exactly what will take place barely denigrates the book as it is a master work from a master of fiction…The Master of Fiction: Robert {freaking} Jordan! Get the book…seriously…stop what you’re doing and buy it…NOW! …I’ll be watching to make sure you do so… …
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book its so goooooood:)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this series and this book is why. A great start to a great series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Even second time around it feels fresh as ever can't wait to read the great hunt!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was introduced to Wheel of Time by a fellow student back in 7th Grade in Ada, Ohio. I picked a copy of The Eye of the World up later and couldn't put it down. It is now almost ten years later and I still love this book series by Robert Jordan. To describe the Wheel of Time, one should use references to famous fantasy authors like (Obviously) JRR Tolkein, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Brian Jacques, CS Lewis, L Frank Baum, Terry Brooks, Terry Goodkind, and Stephen King. An epic hero's journey through a vibrant and realistic magical world, The Eye of the World is a fun novel to read. It is, much Guillermo del Toro's Pan's Labyrinth has been called by critics, 'A Faerie Tale for Grownups.' The style of Robert Jordan is similar to Tolkein, but it also has a feel of a traditional Michener and Stephen King's Dark Tower saga mixed in. It is a tad bit bloody and darker than Lord of the Rings, though, and the dialogue is almost Shakespearean at times. Also, the main character, Rand al'Thor, is more than a bit whiny, sometimes an idiot, and at most times, a pathetic loser who has trouble seeing the big picture. Aside from that point, the Eye of the World is a wonderful addition to anyone's library, whether it is on a Nook, iPad, Kindle, or a real Bookshelf.
RWMK-I More than 1 year ago
Though it feels almost slow in starting, this book quickly takes off, pulling you into the colorful and thoroughly fleshed world of The Wheel of Time series. This book sets the stage for a beautifully crafted tale of majestic and wonderful scope, full of diverse and creative characters. I am almost on the 9th book now, and I would definitely say that there is no way I'm turning back! After having been thoroughly disappointed by George R. R. Martin's series, A Game of Thrones, and quitting the series, I was going into severe withdrawal. At the behest of several friend and family members, I, thank the Light, finally took up The Eye of the World, entering into a world of awesome scope. The only thing I regret is that the series will one day come to an end, when I read A Memory of Light. However... there is always the option of re-reading! In the words of my personal favorite incarnation of The Doctor, David Tennant, "Allons-y!"
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very good, intriguing, fresh. I read this book(paper back) yrs ago, but wanted a refresher.. it is as good now as it was then. I am anxious to get the whole series.. I enjoy reading on my Nook.. the only thing I miss is the 'smell' of a new book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Why ramble. The best book i have ever read.
drblaze2 More than 1 year ago
This book is amazing! If you like Harry Potter, then you will love this. Grade A from beginning to end, you'll feel like you have been transported into this world and given an omniscient (all knowing) point of view. A page turner from beginning to end and with more then 750 pages, you'll never be bored and constantly feel on edge. Whether you're looking for a book to occupy your time or an entire new series to get yourself wrapped up in, you won't regret picking up this book. Endlessly entertaining with a solid plot, it will pick you up and never let you go. The detail that goes into books such as these make them worthy of praise throughout the ages. I feel confused about trying to explain this book exactly to you without giving away any details. I won't give away any details to you. Those must be discovered for yourself. I recommend reading this with a friend or asking others if they have read this book as well. You will gain a lot from conversing with someone else who is truly interested in this book and its rather large series. Be aware that, to my knowledge, there are 12 books in this series. If you are going to become interested in this series, make sure you have an appropriate amount of time to devote to each book. It would be a true shame to read this book without having time to fully analyze it and appreciate the thought and detail that was put into this book by the author. It's a great book, something that anyone could truly appreciate. I find it difficult to believe that anyone could dislike this book. As my friend Andre said "It's just so....GOOD!"
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is exactly the kind of thing I'm into. The plot, the action, the dark, mysterious-ness of it. I just love it all! I can never put the book down once I start reading it and I'm really looking forward to the rest of the series all summer!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book starts the greatest series I have ever read. It is very inteligently written and thought out. Robert Jordan gives readers a very highly complex fantasy realm that most writers do not, or cannot give. The Eye of the World is a catalyst for one of the GREATEST EVER fantasy series. It by far surpasses Tolkien, and that of many other contemporary fantasy writers.
Anonymous 28 days ago
Anonymous 5 months ago
I first heard of this series after getting hooked on Brandon Sanderson's books. After reading, literally, every singlebook