Towers of Midnight by Brandon Sanderson (and Robert Jordan)

Having finally gotten through the mammoth book that is the Towers of Midnight (part 2 of the twelfth book of the twelve book series which is really fourteen books making this book thirteen), I had a few thoughts. Still loving Sanderson’s style over Jordan’s (sacrilege! but truth too). It feels faster and cleaner and less tiresome to get through. We’ve finally touched on some of the things we’ve all been waiting for and are building up for what will be (had better be) an epic final battle.

First thing we finally got to was the return of Morainne. When she went through the “doorway” terangreal, I couldn’t help but think she was bound to be back. After all, if you don’t see the character dead, they likely aren’t and even then… (Then again, Harry was sure Sirius was coming back after suffering much the same death but he was, sadly, gone for good). Anyway, when Mat and Thom set off to rescue her, I wasn’t all that surprised. Most surprising was how slowly they actually went after her. They seemed to take their time considering she was being held captive by people (creature?) that basically terrified Mat. But never mind that. There was also a certain surprising relationship revealed there…The actual rescue was a lot faster than expected which was a little unfortunate, but considering how much there was to cover I understand. Either way, I’m starting to like Mat a lot more and I kind of can’t wait for Rand and Morainne’s reunion. Finally some good news for our “hero.”

Rand has finally laughed and thus he has “changed” as everyone around him keeps insisting on telling us. And maybe he has, in some ways. But then again, he sort of hasn’t. He has a plan that he KNOWS will make Egwene and everyone upset. His reasoning also makes perfect sense. So, instead of explaining his reasoning to her, he says he will be doing it and she has no say in the matter and leaves. So naturally, instead of looking to help him, she chooses to build up opposition. That seems like something the people really need as the Dark One is breaking free of his prison.

Nice to finally see a return of Elayne and Birgitte though Elayne is getting a bit frustrating in her hardheadedness. Notice that every character in this series is stubborn? (Lan anyone?) On the other hand, we got only one scene from Birgitte’s perspective (more than last book so moving up in the world), which left me wanting more. (Spin off book just about her anyone?)

I find myself caring less and less about Perrin (and by extension Hopper and Faile and in a weird way Galad) and Min (and by extension Rand and some of the others surrounding him) but hope their stories can be a little more interseting in the future. Min in particular has lost her appeal. She went from a strong, interesting but mysterious character to a lovesick girl whose soul purpose is to love and support Rand. Occasionally she sees things around him that don’t really tell her anything informative.

Despite the issues, I can’t wait for the last book in the series (and then I will finally read New Spring, the prequel featuring Morainne and Siuan, two if my favorite Aes Sedais). What did you think of book thirteen?


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