In what Iíve grown depressingly used to, thereís a few pages of just more Scenery Porn
of the place we ended the last chapter, before we get down to actually seeing the Eye of the World. And itís a giant lake made up of the male half of the One Power, which will be safe to use if they could find someone to channel it, and Logain probably wonít be too willing. Itís nothing like what I was expecting, but itís certainly big enough to justify the buildup. Kudos there.
But when they come outsideÖwell, we were teased with the Forsaken a couple times, and now we finally meet two of them, Aginor the disgusting old man, and Balthamel the masked man. They spend a while also living up to their buildup, effortlessly countering every attempt made to fight them, and all while acting as creepy as possible complete with rape undertones. This ends with the Green Man getting a Dying Moment of Awesome
, letting Balthamel land lethal hits on him in exchange for smothering him with fungi. So thatís one down, though I donít recall learning how many Forsaken there are. With that, Moiraine pulls another You Shall Not Pass
, but Rand runs before seeing what happens, so sheís just as dead as Thom.
This oneís all about payoff for things obliquely hinted at before, and it works very well. The Eye of the World makes perfect sense with what weíve learned before, and they still canít use it properly so itís not nearly as Deus ex Machina
as it could have been. And speaking of which, the Green Manís death rather neatly removes that concern from future books. And of course Aginor and Balthamel are awesomely scary and intimidating, and I spent the whole scene with no idea how they were going to get out of it. And with them having lost Moiraine at least temporarily, weíre left thinking the next fight is going to be even harder.