WoT recap, pre-AMol

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As I mentioned earlier I'm going to blog my thoughts as I read AMoL. But before I do that, I thought I'd recap. Where are the characters at the end of the last book? What do I think is going to happen, and what do I hope will happen? This will definitely contain spoilers if you haven't already read the rest of the series, so now is your time to stop reading.
At the end of ToM (Towers of Midnight) a large part of the cast have gathered at the Field of Merrilor. Rand's there with some armies. Egwene is there, with some armies. Perrin is there, with some armies. Elayne is there, with some armies. With all these armies, what could possibly go wrong? Strangely I don't think the borderlanders are there. In the storyline Rand has only just given them an ultimatium about following his command, and we don't know how they have responded.

Matt and Thom have just rescued Moiraine from the Eelfin and Aelfin, and are now waiting for a gateway at noon to get back. Tuon is amongst the Seanchen preparing another attack on the White Tower. There are various Ashaman and Aes Sedai getting very worried about what's going on at the Black Tower. I've no idea where Logain is, but Rand has sent Naeff to go find him.

One might think that from this setting that the end of the series might be quite straight forward. Rand could convince everyone at Merrilor that it's a great idea to break the seals. They could then go do that, have some battles, and there you go, Last Battle over. 

But we've waited over two years for this last book to be published. I don't even know how many pages it is, but I'm sure it's quite large. So I doubt it's going to be that straight forward.

At the very end of ToM we had Rand's warded dreams get invaded, obviously setting up a trap for him. That's clearly going to have to play out somehow. I suspect when that when Shaidar Haran tells Graendal (as he snuffs her out) that he is referring to this trap when he says 'This opportunity has been given to another'. I think that other is Lanfear, who was supposedly being tortured in the dream.

There still needs to be something to resolve what happens with the Seanchan. There has to be some kind of meeting between Rand and Tuon, though I don't think he'll bow to her. I think once Rand and Matt have a (long overdue) catch up, and Tuon see's the new Zen like Rand (as opposed to the dark Rand she met last time) there will be some common ground for them to work on. Possibly Matt will leverage his Prince of Ravens title to borrow some Seanchan armies to fight in the last battle.

I'm going to guess that the Seanchan attack on the White Tower will occur, but that most of the sisters won't be there, as they'll be out fighting the good fight at the Last Battle. That or getting their nails done.

The authors have introduced new players with the red veiled Aiel. I remember in 'A Crown of Swords' (ACoS, book 7) when Cadsuane was introduced. I was quite indignant. How dare Jordan introduce a new character so late in the series. Of course, I had no idea back in 1996 that we would have to wait another 17 years for the final book to be published. This time I'm no longer so surprised, well actually I was the first time I read ToM. But of course they are going to throw in a almost entire new people in the closing gasps of the second last book.

The question is, why are these Aiel there? What is their history, and their current motivations? I'm going to suggest that they are a new shadow innovation, who have somehow corrupted some large group of Aiel. Let's just hope they stick to using red veils, so everyone else understands they are different.

I'm going to have a stab at some predictions of things the fans have been wondering about for a long time. Demandred has been gathering some armies, but we don't know where. I'm predicting that they're Seanchan armies from their mainland, and that he and Semirhage were working together to destabalise the empire. He's grabbed some power over there. It doesn't matter that he doesn't control the whole continent, because it's so huge that whatever he's grabbed still gives him significant armies.

Moiraine's reason for coming back is either to tell Rand something (like that Min is right, it's not about having 2 women to help him wield Callendor), or to rescue him from this trap with Lanfear. Again.

Lan's not going to die in his charge to the Trollocs at the end of the epilogue. Perhaps that's where the borderlanders will show up. Camelyn will fall, but the Band will manage to rescue some of the canons.

Perrin is going to somehow lead part of the Last Battle in Tel'aran'rhiod, probably related to the dream trap that Lanfear is involved in.

Who's going to die? Jordan has been very reluctant to kill off characters, and even inclined to miraculously raise a lot of them. On my hit list I think we've got Rand, Perrin, Olver (because wouldn't that be so sad), Birgitte, Siuan, Cadsuane and one of Bain or Chiad. Plus thousands of no-name or minor characters.

There are many questions I'm looking forward to getting answered. Like what's Alanna been upto, and did she go north of her own volition. I suspect she's been kidnapped, and the shadow will use her bond against Rand in some way. Are the visions that Aviendha saw in the glass pillars of the future actually going to come true?

I'm hoping the time span of AMoL is going to be quite long, because I'd like to see some of Rands kids get born. We haven't even seen Aviendha get pregnant yet, so hopefully there will be time for that.

Will Rand be somehow resurrected after his death at Shaoyl Ghul? Or will his death be somehow averted due to his link to Moridin (maybe he gets to substitute him?). I'm going to predict that Rands blood will be shed on the rocks of Shaoyl Ghul, and people will think he's died, but it won't be enough to kill him. Maybe there will be some kind of bond trick to further help the illusion, much like Moiraine did with her bond to Lan when she fell in the gateway.

I think they will defeat the shadow. But do I think Rand will manage to re-seal the bore, or that he will actually destroy the Dark one? I think he will somehow destroy the dark one, or maybe even merge with him, but then he'll have to 'go away' to maintain the balance or something like that.

And my last final prediction is that this book will make me cry. So perhaps I won't read it while commuting to work.

2 Comments

Interesting.

I don't know why you bothered re reading the series when you don't even remember some of the critical highlights.

You forgot the badger scene YOU JUST READ! The one at the end of Towers of Midnight between Mat and Perrin on the fields of Merrilor. So Mat and Thom (and Moraine) are not waiting for a gateway.

And you forgot that the Seachan attacked the white tower, which was a major reason/building block to help Egwene become the Amyrlin.

Regrettably Phill is mistaken. I didn't forget the badger scene. While the badger scene is a great scene, I didn't feel the need to mention it in my recap. ToM is a big book after all. However I did go and checks the assertion that this conversation occurred on the fields of Merrilor. I don't know why Phill got confused about this, but I can assure you that this conversation occurred near Caemlyn, just before Perrin traveled to Merrilor, and Mat travelled with Thom and Noal to go rescue Moiraine.

Also, I didn't forget about the initial Seanchan attack on the White Tower. It's one of my favourite scenes from the series. If you have another look, the first time I talk about this I say that Tuon is preparing 'another' attack on the White Tower.

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