Journey around the Wheel of Time

The Shadow Rising Audiobook Update 6: Two Rivers gang

Having the wherewithal to look back on last weeks edition of the world famous audiobook recap blog series, I noticed that I had the foresight to include The Two Rivers in the subtitle and not talk about, you know, The Two Rivers. That was of course intentional and not at all because I forgot so without further ado lets get into it.

Wherewithal is one of those words that sounds like it is a high brow vocabulary word but I think we all use it too much and now it has lost that effect. This has nothing to do with The Two Rivers or our boy Perrin but I found this important enough to mention.

Perrin is finally in The Two Rivers and he is not having a good time. Him and his assorted fellows all meet at the Winespring Inn where no one is happy to see him. Now I don’t know about you but I hate delivering bad news so I feel for the al’Vere’s when they have to tell Perrin the Whitecloaks murked his whole family. Thats a tough pill to swallow on your homecoming. Equally as bad is that pretty much half the town hates him. That would eat at my insecurity, which makes my choice of throwing my writing out there to the world with a very clear picture of myself an odd choice of hobby.

Because Perrin is a boss he takes it in stride, eventually understanding that life ain’t for the feint of heart and starts to plan his conquering of The Two Rivers. Unlike me, who was openly weeping while running, which sadly is not the first time that has happened along this journey. Essentially what gets him over it is what gets men over pretty much anything, some girl giving him attention.

So in order to take over The Two Rivers he has to go to meet up with the man who birthed our hero, bid daddy Cauthon. That was not the way I wished to write that, but it is out there so here we are. They all head over to the woods and run into, surprise surprise, some Aes Sedai fuckboys. Its ya homie Verin, who is up there on my favorites, and her two warders along with Abel and Tam. A real murders row. I love that Abel is giving Perrin advice on women, it just shows that pimping runs in the Cauthon blood.

Eventually they all decide that it might be best to go free all the people the Whitecloaks have swiped. Which I think I will save for next week, as I am running out of gas on this blog. Happy Friday everyone!

Final Notes: Biggggggg announcement for 2020 coming out soon. Just waiting to finalize some things but I once everything is set up I will let everyone know.

Journey around the Wheel of Time

The Shadow Rising Audiobook Update 5: Rhuidean and the Two Rivers

WELLLLLCOME to another edition of the greatest audiobook recap in blog form this side of the Atlantic or Pacific. Since I haven’t been training for anything in particular I haven’t made much progress on the book, hence my lack of updates. I also have been lazy about writing these. That is more the real reason.

Regardless, here we are on this not lovely Friday so lets talk about the WoT. Where we last left off our fearless hero was getting fucked over by the snake homies, bravely coming out ahead with a new weapon. Rand on the other hand decides he is about that smoke and delves into the realm of Rudian.

The thing with Rhuidean is that the challenge of surviving it is to essentially watch the history of the Aiel through various ancestors of one line of people and to not feel so tortured by the knowledge that you feel like you have to kill yourself. Seems pretty simple to me, its not like you are watching the sexual history of your parents or witnessing a genocide through the eyes of a torturer. There is no Netflix in the WoT so I think I would love the opportunity to catch a quick memory flick.

So the tale of the Aiel goes like this: The Aiel used to be soft as shit travelling people who were tasked by the Aes Sedia to carry a bunch of magical crap around after the breaking of the world. Since the Aiel followed the way of the leaf, which means they won’t murk anyone, they were constantly getting fucked over and murdered and enslaved and stuff. Eventually they gave up that life and started becoming masked murdering desert gangsters. Also before the breaking of the world, there were flying cars and lightning sticks. Thats pretty cool.

We all know the kind of man Rand is, so of course he doesn’t get anything out of the movie. What he does do is arguably the most important action in the entire series. When he walks out of Rhuidean he sees our hero dangling from a rope and winds up actually saving him. For this I am eternally grateful. Gratitude, what a way to end a blog

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The Shadow Rising Audiobook Update 4: Reminiscing about Rhuidean

I have been so focused on having the blog catch up to my progress in the audiobook that I actually think I overshot it. The plan was to write about the entire Rhuidean adventure, buttttttt I have not even got close to finishing it. So I guess this leaves me no choice but to work with what I got.

I think to many it may be obvious, but I am not sure that Rand is all there mentally. I am not ready to call him the r word, as I still have a professional job and no way to sustain myself, but the dude is certainly not the brightest. So this jabroni is with our hero of the tale and they are heading into ghost town just dying of thirst when he realizes he can just magic them some water. When he finally does get some water he barely even realizes he needs to drink the stuff. I mean this guy is a grade A idiot. A Pat Shurmer type guy.

Shoutout to Mat. No surprise here but when him and Rand are on the border of entering the creepy ass fog ridden Rhuidean he says that they should go in together. Rand pulls some nasty trick where he makes the coin flip the way he wants, basically barring Mat from really being there for his friend. Mat decides that it might be nice to take a little stroll through another ter’angreal (I abhor typing that word out, I have to look it up everytime) door since he has some time to kill and gets himself back in another world, this time with some fox homies instead of I quote “snaky people.”

Instead of answering questions though, they ignore him until he asks for the holes in his memory to be filled. Then they ignore him until he asks for a way to be free of Aes Sedai and the Power. Last he asks to be away from the fox homies and get back to Rueidien. They just go “done” and start chirping him for being a fool. Those fox homies are annoying as shit.

Listen I do not think Mat handled the fox homies too well, he left a lot on the table. To be fair he didn’t exactly know the rules but I remember him actually coming out pretty ahead in the exchange. That end quote is pretty dope though. To end off this much delayed blog, a little excerpt from Chapter 24.

“Wise to ask leavetaking, when you set no price, no terms.”

“Yet fool not to first agree on price.”

I have no idea what the fuck that means but it sounds cool.

Journey around the Wheel of Time

The Shadow Rising Audiobook Update 3: Aiel, Aiel, and more . . . Aiel

After the lovely trip into the world of weirdo snakes the gang decides that some decisions have to be made. Fuckboy Rand makes a bunch of pointless proclamations but the main point is finally everybody gets to split up and go there own separate ways. Unfortunately Rand accompanies the hero of our story to lovely top vacation destination theeeeee Aiel Waste!

In other news, the Perrin possee make their way over to the Two Rivers to deal with the Whitecloaks, with Faile naturally bitching. There has never been a character in all of time that nags their man more then Faile Bashere. I mean this dude Perrin is yokkkkked and quite frankly a big pussy, I mean a nice guy, and all this girl does is get mad at him. Granted she found him shirtless in a room with smokeshow Berelain, which in most instances would be the end of any solid relationship so she kind of has some ground to stand on, but in typical whiny girl fashion instead of taking action she just nags him to death. That was a massive sentence. She also tricks my homie Loial into scheming to accompany Perrin, whatever they are doing shit in The Ways.

The queen of mean, Nynaeve, and her lackey ol’ Elayne decide to go to Tanchico based on some crackpot dream Egwene has. Shit pops off for them eventually, but right now we get bored to death with Elayne and Thom’s rekindling of their semi-parental relationship. To be honest that whole thing gets pretty weird.

But lets talk Mat and Moiraine. Listen say what you want about Moiraine but I am more and more thinking that she might be a top female character in all of fantasy. She is fucking hardddddd.

So an illustrious crew of Rand, Mat, Lan, Egwene, Aviendha, and some other Aiel all take the stone thing to teleport to the Aiel waste. Apparently everyone has to go to Rhuidean and become clan chiefs and wise women and stuff. But the Aiel Waste does not lack for entertainment, instantly we get a scene where Mat, and I guess Rand, get threatned by some loser wannabe Aiel Chief and Mat is ready to lay down the law.

I am going to save the trip into Rhuidean for next week, mainly because we haven’t got there, but I wanted to mention one thing. Robert Jordan is the most subtle horndog in the world. At this point the amount of women who have had to strip down and get naked to go do some task or other is crazy. In this part not only does Aviendha get naked to go run to Rhuidean, but Moiraine also whips em out. I don’t think WoT actually has any sex scenes, but Jordan sure does talk about titties a whole bunch, without ever actually saying tits. He is a master of his craft.

To be fair this did not have much talk of the Aiel, so I guess the subtitle was a little misleading. Fuck you. But also have a great weekend!

Final Notes: Say what you want about Miles Garret but him getting kicked on the ground was hysterical. All that matters is they crushed the spread.

Journey around the Wheel of Time

The Shadow Rising Audiobook Update 2: An attempted catch up

Man I have really let this weekly series fall to the wayside. As a no self blame blog, I refuse to blame myself for this, so I am forced to blame external factors. Either way, I am going to try and cover some of the wild ass events that have occurred. Try and keep in mind, much like the entire Giants season, I am coming at this from a deficit so some stuff has to be glossed over.

The battle of the Stone of Tear is something that is worthy of it’s own blog, as I believe while the battle itself is actually pretty boring, the stuff surrounding it was way more interesting. Lanfear, which I am now realizing that clearly Jordan just ran out of character names and took Lan’s name and added fear, tries once again to unsuccessfully fuck Rand. Since Rand is mostly into children, Lanfear being immortal and shit was never going to succeed. Apparently she can change her form, so if she really wanted to succeed maybe she should change her appearance to a teenager and sing some Billie Eilish while crying about her self-diagnosed depression. See I get what kids are into these days.

Whatever she doesn’t, instead she basically ruins the whole surprise attack on the Stone. What a narc. If you are team trolloc, which for the record I am not as I find them pretty boring, you would hate this move. She basically is Leonard Williams, but unlike Leonard Williams her giving away of her old team secrets didn’t lead to getting carved up by a QB who still is suffering from PTSD after watching the remake of Ghostbusters. Instead the trollocs get zapped to death by Rand. We are now approaching the part of the series where every major confrontation with trolloc’s end with them getting murked by the one power. Kinda like when a dude playing COD on a PC in commie china is going up against us free folk on xbox. The most interesting part of this was that this surprise attack might have worked, if Lanfear didn’t actively use her trolloc’s to save everyone than Rand would hopefully be dead.

Like I said, I really wanted to go into all this stuff but I am way too behind at this point so I have to pick a few things to go over. I promise to right this ship by Friday’s edition.

To end it I want to talk about Mat’s wild ride in the doorway ter’angreal. So Mat is craving for some answers to life’s biggest questions and goes into weirdo world to get some answers. The guy knows he only gets to ask three questions, so he has to play it cool. But he is NOT happy with the shit this Aelfinn pull. Here is how the thing basically goes:

  1. “Should I go home to help my people?” “You must go to Rhuidean.”
  2. “Why should I [go to Rhuidean]?” “If you do not go to Rhuidean, you will die.”
  3. “Why will I die if I do not go to Rhuidean?” “You will have sidestepped the thread of fate, left your fate to drift on the winds of time, and you will be killed by those who do not want that fate fulfilled.”

So Mat starts flipping out that they are trying to get him out of there and start rapid fires questions at them. This for some reason proves an effective strategy, as this losers actually answer him. It continues:

“What fate are you talking about? (…) What fate?” “To marry the Daughter of the Nine Moons!”

“To die and live again, and live once more a part of what was!” “To give up half the light of the world to save the world!”

“Go to Rhuidean, son of battles! Go to Rhuidean, trickster! Go, gambler! Go!”

Possible book review coming this week as well.

Journey around the Wheel of Time

The Shadow Rising Audiobook Update 1: The start of the rise of a shadow

God damn I did not realize last week I just did a recap of the third book meaning that update 1 for this book has the potential to be absolutely massive. Checking the progress on the audiobook I am a quarter the way through it, which is the not-so-crazy 10 hours to cover. If I am not communicating sarcasm effectively well that is the fault of the reader not the writer.

This book is fucking massive. Sometimes since I typically read things on the Kindle app (no free ads) the size of a book never really crosses my mind. Unless of course it is the Dark Tower, where every book felt like 1,000 pages too long. This book actually is over a 1,000 pages which is insane to think about. This book is also the start of the plot meandering, since Jordan is not exactly known for his brevity. Whatever it has been great so far.

In order to avoid having to write 90,000,000,000 words talking about all the great stuff that happens, I think I will cover two parts. The first is always the introduction. I actually just read that this is the only book without a prologue in the series. Whatever the first chapter is essentially that. We start the book with the ever rare Min POV. Min’s eternal war in subverting gender roles has unfortunately hit a snafu as she must do away with britches and throw on a dress in order to infiltrate the seemingly easy-as-hell to enter White Tower in order to deliver Moiraine’s message from 40 years ago to the Amrylin. I don’t care about those two meeting at all, I just like Gawyn, who she runs into on the way. Bornhold goes to the Two Rivers with ya boy sneaky Ordeith. I also don’t really care about that but I like the part where Ordeith is saying how he hasn’t tortured anyone but later says he was torturing some I think travelling people but they don’t count since no one will even notice. Just found that part funny.

As to some actual action that effects important people. I’m talking the Ta’vern Trio. The Big Three if you will. Rand has started to go low key psycho, and as a result he starts using the one power to “acciedently” try to murder his friends. First off is your boy beared Perrin. See clean-shaven Perrin is a guy you could trust. An offensive lineman who is an all around decent chap. Bearded Perrin is a horned up maniac. First off the guy almost gets killed by his own ax, but fortunately he is able to stop Rand’s attempts at murder. Bearded Perrin fuckksssss, no doubt about that. Ask Faile.

Then the hero of the story is busy hustling some lordling losers in cards like a regular Phil Ivy (that is the only pro poker player I know) when the cards start trying to fight back. Mat has that drip. He is in a fresh new coat, he has a bunch of Tear lords sons eating out the palm of his hand, hes checking out the ladies anddddd he gets that feeling that he is about to make some cash money. Turns out Rand can’t possibly leave him alone and the little pictures on the cards try to murder him. Mat throws knives at the cards, which is a dope defense and saves himself. DRIP.

I guess this forces me to talk about Rand. So Rand is in his chambers when Berelain decides she wants to booty call him. There is not doubt that Berelain is that bitch. She is the First of Mayene, which is a tiny little shit country, but she is also wild hot. I know this because every chance that little horn dog Robert Jordan gets, he talks about her tits and ass. Rand of course is a little bitch boy, so instead of laying down the dragon, he traps her in some air. Maybe he is one of those dudes who gets off on watching naked women be tortured without doing anything? Who knows the levels of Rand’s depravity. Either way, some reflections come out of the mirror and start fighting him. He wins, but the reason behind this is obvious. He had to make it look like he wasn’t trying to activly kill Perrin and Mat so he faked having his reflections try to kill him. Loser.

That about wraps up one fraction of this monstrosity. I think next week I will try and do the battle that takes place in the Stone of Tear. Mainly because it is the easiest subtitle. I also want to do a little deep dive into Mat’s run in with the doorway ter’angreal. Happy Friday!

Final Notes: Since I did not Photoshop an image for this week here is a little bonus. It is supposed to be a picture of Gawyn though I didn’t think much of the original. Also I took the over last night at 41.5. Not even close.

Book Reviews

New Spring Wrap-up: Springing me deeper into the Wheel of Time

Trash subtitle, not a trash book. New Spring is a Wheel of Time novel and serves as a prequel to the Wheel of Time series. One may question what would posses a man who has spent 100+ hours listening to the WoT audiobook series and writing about it weekly to also pick up a prequel book to the series and to that I have a simple answer. I am not a wealthy man and this book was offered by Tor as a free e-book. Being a man that quite enjoys both the WoT and free things, this was a match made in heaven.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that it was quite the mindfuck listening to the audiobooks during my run, I think I was listening to the second or third book when I read this, and later on reading about events that transpired 20ish years prior to the start of the series. Felt like things were hopping around a lot.

So this book follows some of the best characters in the WoT series, Moiraine (I think I actually spelled her name right on the first try) and ya boyyyyyyy Lan Mandragoran. Set twenty years before we are introduced to fuckwad Rand, the book opens up with the oft mentioned Aiel War wrapping up. It’s funny I just listened to a part of The Shadow Rising where both Gaul and Lan are in the same room and they both have a mutual dislike for each other and it is obvious that the Aiel remember Lan whipping their asses in the war. We rarely see Lan as an actual battlefield commandeer so him strategizing and leading men was a great opener. There is a part where some lord requests for Lan to be the anvil in a hammer and anvil type trap on a group of Aiel and Lan agrees, despite having a feeling that the hammer is never going to show. So when questioned about it Lan says something along the lines of “I gave my word so I will stick to it.” Badass. I should go look for the quote but I won’t, read the book if you want it.

We get introduced to Moiraine and Siuan when they are Accepted. They are serving as cup bearers to the current Amyrlin, Tamra, when Gitara, who is the Keeper of the Stole, has a god damn seizure and croaks out a prophesy that the Dragon has been reborn. She then abruptly dies, which is kind of funny. Moiraine and Siuan vow to find and protect the Dragon without letting anyone know what they are doing. The Amyrlin tries to track down the Dragon by offering money to anyone who pushed out a kid in the last week, and the two collect all the possible candidates in a list. This list becomes their own personal quest. They wind up getting raised to Aes Sedai and set out to start tracking down kids.

Lan on the other hand is in a little bit of a pickle. Returning from war, he realizes this old milf he used to sleep with has tried to raise the Golden Crane while he has been gone. Not pleased with this he decides to track her down. He meets, you guessed it, Moiraine on the way and the two begin an adveserial relationship.

When they get to the city of Chachin some stuff happens with the Black Ajah and stuff. Having spoiled 60% of the book I won’t ruin the ending.

Many lovely people of Reddit question if this book should be read before one begins the WoT. While that would make it a nice number of 15 books, the answer is an emphatic NO. Reading this book contains massive spoilers for the series as you know the driving forces behind Lan and Moiraine’s actions. This severely takes away from the mystery and intrigue of those two characters, as well as spoiling a whole bunch of stuff about the Dragon. If you go into book one having read this, it takes away a lot of the fun. Save this for after, as a nice reminder of how great the series is. If the idea of reading a prequel novel after reading a masssssive 14 book series is too much for you, give it some time and come back to it.

I rate this book: