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The Path of Daggers is the eighth novel in the Wheel of Time series of fantasy novels written by the now deceased Robert Jordan. We are still waiting for the end, with book 12 of 14 just released the posthumously published books have been largely written by Jordan with the help of Robert Sanderson. Hopefully in the next two years we should find out how the Wheel of Time ends.
Part of the problem of the wheel of time was its increasing scope, the sixth novel in the series should have been the final novel in the series but weighed down by the enormous storylines, the length of the series was extended initially to 9 books, then 12 and now 14.
The Path of Daggers
Path of Daggers is the eighth novel in the Wheel of Time series and for me is the worst novel in the series so far; in this novel the story progresses slowly with too many storylines rather complicate the story rather than make the story flow smoothly. There is a general feeling of the author overwriting the story and overcomplicating the events because by the end of the novel the reader is rather thankful that something exciting starts to happen. This novel has far too much conversation and not enough action.
In the PoD, Rand has been released from the Aes Sedai but has other issues to deal with. Part of his tale is the story of a magic wielding man, but the story is clouded in this book by the arrival of other magic wielding men. He has a story about the arrival of the Prophet of the Dragon, a man who claims to talk for Rand. This man is also a powerful magician and a considerable challenge to Rand's power. That sounds exciting but it's not followed up with the kind of energy we saw in earlier novels but rather plods along.
The other stories in this book progress in a similar manner, stories which in earlier novels would have had exciting finale's and thought provoking moments wallow in their lengthy look at the storyline. So we get plenty of conversations, journeys, lots on the use of the dream world where everything seems to take twice as long as anywhere else. There is plenty of scope for the battles between divided Aes Sedai to have exciting fights and momentous moments but when they do happen the reader has got to the point of exhaustion after being forced to read page and page on how Aes Sedai have ageless faces, pursed lips, folding arms and adjusting skirts.
Come on Robert Jordan get to the end of the story before you croak, oh, well get to the end before I croak. This book was the first in which I almost gave up on the series, it was long winded and for large tracts just plain dull. Thankfully I struggled through it and was rewarded with some of the latter novels but it would be fair to say this was the worst novel in the series so far; unfortunatley things had to get considerably worse before they got better.
Eight Robert Jordan Books sitting on my shelf, eight Robert Jordan Books sitting on my shelf, you can finish the rest off yourself! So The Path of daggers, if you had not guessed, is the eighth book in the wonderful Wheel of time series from fantasy book writer Robert Jordan.
This book came out way back in October 1998. So thats over 2 years since the previous book, a crown of swords, was released. I wonder if Jordan was loosing his enthusiasm for the books by this point. As this does tend to come across in this book. Even so this was another huge seller for Jordan. People had fallen in love with the characters and the world Jordan had created, so even though the books seemed to be going down hill and the wait between books was growing, people would continue to read regardless. Apparently this was the first book in the wheel of time series that made it to number one spot for best sellers over in America, which really shows how much people were expecting.
So as you would expect, book number eight carries on from where a Crown of swords left off. So you really need to have read this book and all the others to be able to follow the storyline.
So the story contines with Elayne Trakand, Nynaeve al'Meara and a few others using there newly aquired bowl of winds to reverse the unatural climate the dark one has unleashed on the world. Then they must quickly flee the onrushing attack from the seanchan.
Meanwhile Perrin is trying to stop a false prophet who is causing chaos in the world trying to convince people that he is the Dragon reborn, he has some crazy followers who are stirring up all kinds of trouble.
And Rand with his small army of trained Asha'man are trying to fight back the invasion of the Seanchan and win there lands back. Rand resorts to desperate methods in this attempt with some pretty nasty repercusions that create some serious probelms for him.
I hate to say it but I think this is the worst book in the series so far. I still enjoyed it but found it much harder going than most of the previous ones. It feels as if Jordan has just run out of ideas. The story just seems to be going in circles, nothing really new is introduced, were just chasing the same old enemies around the same old lands.
There are so many different tales to follow again in this one. And unlike some other books the story does not flow as it should, it kind of stops and starts without ever getting anywhere.
This is a book that is worth reading, simply because you need the information from it so that the rest make sense. But I was glad to get through this one and move onto the next. Not a classic I'm afraid.
Book eight in the Wheel of Time series. If you haven't read the others, this book isn't going to make any sense at all, and this op may be challenging (I will do my best, but how do you describe the eighth book in a series for someone who has read none of the eight?) The Wheel of time series is huge - 9 books at the moment, probably another three to come. There are many, many characters, each spawning their own little plot lines. There is big war coming, but in the meantime, there are many sides fighting with each other, jockying for position and making strange alliances. There are many small countries, many cultures many prohecies. Book eight seems to be a fill in, and us such, is a swine to read but will undoubtedly be vital for getting us all to book 9, if we feel enclined to go. Nothing much seems to actually happen in this book - some people fight, some people die, some armies invade and are repulsed, but I found it very hard to engage with any of the sparsely recounted action. Most of the main characters seem to be travelling somewhere, which means that hopefully in the next book they will all be nicely positioned to 'do stuff'. The inevitable forray into the plot lines, with as much detail as I think you can stomach. Rand al Thor - Dragon Reborn, trying to unite the continent to face the last great battle with the evil one - there are prophecies, he thinks its his destiny. He might well be going mad. He's certianly becoming a very cold, unsympathetic figure, which doesn't make the books any more readable. He fights people. It isn't that exciting, or compelling, mostly he seems to just arrange things and worry. Perrin Aybarra (can talk to wolves)and Faile Bashere Aybarra (his wife), sent out with Berelaine (Queen of a small country)to deal with the Prophet (mad man trying to enforce his rule in Rand's name.) They find him, but little else actually happens. They also meet a character y
ou haven't seen since the first book - you have to pay attention with this series. This plot line is largely a waste of some good characters. Elayne (Princess and magic user, in love with Rand) Nynaeve(magic user) Lan (Probably dying, married to Nynaeve) and Avienda (magic user, also in love with Rand) have collected a vast number of women from different cultures, all of whom have the potential to weild magic, they travel slowly, nothing of any note seems to happen to them. Elayne is about to reclaim her throne, otherwise this plot line is painfully static. Egwene (young magic user from same village as Rand) is in charge, in theory at least, of a large number of magic using women. Nothing very memorable happens to her either. Elaida (magic user, used to serve Elayne's mother.) Has the White Tower (home of the female magic users) she wants to rule, to drag in all the rebels (Nynaeve, Elayne, Egwene and their followers) she wants to capture Rand, she wants to get rid of the men Rand is having trained to do magic, but none of it seems to be working. This is a moderatly intreresting plot line which crops up now and then, not really explored enough for my liking given that its the only thing of any real interest going on. The Seanchen - a very military set from a distant land, who claim to be descended from a man who once ruled the continent where the action is set. They invade, we get some insight into who and how they are, but again, not really enough. Furthermore, the book deals with dozens of apparently minor characters doing things - not all of which are obvious, some of which will undoubtedly have huge impact on the plot in later books. This is very frustrating - from the previous seven you know full well that reading closely is vital, but so much of the book is tedious that its very hard to stick with. Book 8 suffers very much from too mcuh plot and not enough story. Nothing at all seems to happen, buty
ou are inundated with small details that you might, or might not, need to know for later on. It isn't a good book, it isn't that much fun to read, it is largely very frustrating and is an all time low in what has otherwise been a pretty good through to excellent series. I was disappointed, by this exersize in not being able to see the woods for the trees. What it reminded me of most was the way that somewhere in Tolkein's "The Two Towers" everyone tends to grind to a halt, because nothing is actually happening and everyone is just slowly plodding from a to b. It's like that, only for about 700 pages. If you mean to read the whole series, you have to read it, there is no escape. However, unless book 9 turns out to be astoundingly good, I'm not inclined to recomend reading the whole series - tis a lot o work and I am beginning to feel it might not be worth it after all.
Eighth in the Wheel of Time Series.