The Liveblog of Time: The Shadow Rising

Eegah

Chapter 1: Seeds of Shadow

My predictions for The Shadow Rising:

-Seeing as this one is a good deal longer than the three before it, I imagine itíll spread the scope out more among the viewpoint characters, maybe adding a few that can have more equal time to the leads unlike in book two.

-After the last one got Rand mostly out of the way to develop Mat, Perrin, and Egwene, this one is going to give us more of Thom and Min, after their rather small roles before this.

-Weíll see more of the Sea Folk, a culture thatís been on the periphery this whole time but apparently has some role to play given how Jordan went to the trouble to add them to this world.

-Perrin and Zarineís relationship will develop further, and sheíll become a bit less annoying as she grows more accustomed to the kind of life he has.

No prologue this time, so right into chapter one:

Min arrives at Tar Valon, after taking almost all of book three to get there. Everywhere she looks are signs that something very bad will happen here soon, and probably form the climax this time. Naturally sheís a bit behind on current events, so Jordan has an excuse to do more reminding of whatís going on. She also runs into Gawyn, whoís getting quite upset about not knowing where his sister is.

Siuan suspects Minís visions mean the Blacks will attack, but for now she wants Min to stay in Tar Valon, and take over the job of finding any Black sleeper agents. And then thereís a Crowning Moment of Funny as she wants to make sure no one recognizes Min, so she has her go undercover as the biggest girly girl possible.

Elaida joins the point of view characters, and we learn the real specifics behind her Knight Templar nature. She really does oppose the Dark One and wants to do whatever she can to keep him from winning the Last Battle. Unfortunately, she sees that as keeping Andor strong, and the best way she can think of to do that is stopping what Siuan is up to. And she gets a White named Alviarin to help her by laying her case out. Poor Communication Kills, guys.

Dain Bornhald deals with Ordeith, a consultant heís been saddled with who is upset with having to put up with a bunch of Tinkers. I like him already. This is the beginning of their plan to attack Two Rivers.

And now something even more unexpected: Suroth is now a viewpoint character, as sheís been in hiding on the Sea Folkís islands since the defeat at Falme. Ryma, now completely broken, is interrogated about the Dragon Reborn, but of course she knows nothing. Suroth is planning to launch a new attack against Rand so the Seanchan Empress will never know about her defeat, and is also keeping another piece of information from her, which I assume is the discovery of two collared Seanchan.

The first three books all suffered from slow beginnings, with not much happening in their first several chapters. Not so here, as Jordan immediately gets several plates spinning. I guess weíre far enough into the series now that he felt fine dispensing with pandering to people who havenít read earlier books (which Iíve never understood why you would do, anyway, so thatís fine with me). I loved Egwene and the othersí Alias story in the last book, so seeing Min take it over while even deeper undercover should be lots of fun. And the reintroduction of several hostile forces promises a book packed with plot, which the increased length should certainly be up to holding.

Comments

One of the things Jordan does really well is interrogate how information spreads, is warped and misinterpreted: Very rarely do people have an accurate understanding of what is going on.
Arilou 15th Jul 12
Mostly I remember this novel being about the Aiel, but I'm sure there's more than that. I imagine several events I think occur in book 5 actually happened here.

It should be apparent fairly soon if it's not yet who Ordeith is. Rand not making it to Falme in time does have consequences.
montagohalcyon 15th Jul 12
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/lb_i.php?lb_id=13423979860B15999400