***Spoiler Warning!!***** I’m not going to spoil this book, but this review might spoil parts of books that come before it in this series. Please read prior books before reading my review.
“Til shade is gone,
til water is gone,
Into the shadow with teeth bared,
Screaming defiance with the last breath,
To spit in Sightblinder’s eye on the Last Day.”
This book picks up just a little bit after the last book left off. Rand is finally convinced he is the Dragon Reborn and is trying to figure out how he can fulfill the prophecies written about him, while at the same time not going mad and killing his friends and family. To do this he leaves the camp he shared with Moraine, Lan, Perrin and Min and heads to Tear to claim famed artifact Callandor, a Sa-Angreal in the shape of a crystal sword. Meanwhile, the forsaken are terrorizing him in his dreams.
When Morain realizes Rand has left, their group begins to chase after him. Along the way they pick up a young huntress for the horn named Faile. They know they are following Rand by the path of odd happenings that he leaves in his wake.
In a separate storyline, Nynaeve, Egwene, Elayne and Mat head back to the white tower, although Mat is not conscious due to the poisoning of the Shadar Logoth dagger. Once at the white tower and freed of the dagger, Mat begins a quick recovery and the girls are enlisted to help capture the dreaded Black Ajah. Separately, the groups leave the white tower, not fully understanding the dangers they will soon face.
The pacing in this story is excellent; a lot goes on and I don’t think it could have been done any quicker and still have done the story justice. There are a lot of new locations covered and we learn a little more about the intricacies of a world that we have only partially discovered. One of my favorite viewpoints is Mat’s as he really starts to come into his own and gets a good portion of the spotlight. He is a fun character, as is Thom.
The ending is strong and exciting and, like the last book, it takes a good deal of the story as the different viewpoints begin to entwine with one another. I highly recommend this book as it has a strong plot and good continuing character development, and we are starting to see a little clearer as to where this story is ultimately heading.
Rated: Mild. See ratings page for more details. As with the other books, there is almost nothing involving sex directly. One main character is embarrassed by the lyrics of a song which we don’t hear, and another main character likes to think about the girls he sees, but nothing overly detailed. There is a good deal of fighting and violence, but nothing in too great of detail. No swearing of any harsh nature. Made-up swear words are not uncommon.