The Wheel of Time…books 1-3

I’ve pretty much posted about all the audiobooks I’ve listened to recently, which means I’m going to have to start posting about the books I listen to right after I’ve finished them.  The problem is I’ve only gotten through three books in The Wheel of Time series, and I really don’t feel that’s quite enough to say whether I like the series yet.

The first two books were pretty mediocre.  There are a couple interesting characters, but the plot was mostly just Odyssey / Lord of the Rings travel drudgery.  I feel that the travel plot is often used to give the appearance of plot momentum when there really isn’t any (I like LotR, but it was a slog to read).  What’s more, the main male protagonists aren’t all that interesting.  Rand al’Thor is so dense it’s a surprise he’s physically malleable enough to bend his own joints.  Perrin Aybara is just Rand’s wolf-man equivalent.  Matrim (Mat) Cauthon is completely useless for anything till book three .  In fact, in the first two books, the interesting characters are the female characters, who seem to have believable personalities and character arcs (relatively speaking).  Everyone else seems brainlessly driven by the mediocre plot.

The third book, however, finally starts to make Perrin more interesting, continues to develop the female characters, and actually manages to turn Matrim (Mat) into one of my favorite characters so far.  That said, this story has only just barely started getting good.  I can’t really say I’m hooked yet, but I see a whole lot of potential, and given that Brandon Sanderson is doing the last few books in the series, I’m willing to keep going in the hopes that things continue to improve.

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