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on 24 March 2017
You can curtainly tell the female characters are written by a man. This book has started of better than book ten, which you need to read to understand the story.. but be warned book 10 is full of gass and not much else. However, my husband and i have been working our way through all the books, and we do like the characters, just wish the books got to the point more often. It is an intregueing world that they author has established.
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on 9 March 2017
Having read all the previous books this continued the story excellently. All the themes were developed expertly. Nice twists and turns as usual.
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on 21 July 2017
Very happy
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on 5 August 2006
After falling in love with the WoT series after reading The Eye of the World and the subsequent 4 or 5 books, I began to feel that maybe the story was unravelling out of control with the arrival of books 8 to 10.

After the monstrosity that was book 10, Knife of Dreams certainly attempts to rekindle some semblance of a plot into the series, but I can't help feeling that Jordan has significantly altered his sense of the world, and through trying to convey a land that is changing with the coming of Tarmon Gai'don, has lost contact with the very things about the story that we all loved.

The pace has definitely quickened and some plot threads are tied off, yet even reading what should be exciting revelations about Rand, the ta'veren, Aes Sedai etc.. seem to become bogged down in characters dress codes, hairstyles, warder bonds, inner voices, feelings (often of contempt for the opposite sex) or simply their preference of wine over goat's milk! It seems that no man can talk about women without listing all the ways in which they confuse him, no woman can speak to men without telling them they are 'woolheaded'. There are so many Aes Sedai, Asha'man, Tairen and Cairhienin nobles, Gai'shan, Windfinders, Wise Ones, maids and Seanchan officers with their own story lines that I have to keep re-reading just to keep up with characters of little or no consequence! Please let the Last Battle come soon, and just let it be dealt with in the style of the original Jordan!
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on 21 October 2005
Can we really be getting close to a conclusion? Many of the minor plot threads seem to be pulled together in this 11th book in the series. Having slogged through Crossroads of Twilight I was thrilled to be pulled along at a good pace. Much of the last few books seemingly endless digressions were avoided here.

We have conclusions to Faile's abduction by the Shaido, a fufillment of at least one prophecy in Mat's tale as well as some good action sequences and a dash of humour. Elaine finally stops whingeing and whining to actually get something done. Rand figures less in this book, much less than he has in previous instalments but his section of the book is memorable. The number of minor plot threads resolved or on track to resolution are too numerable to account but fans of the series, who began it as I did with the first book more than 15 years ago, will be mightily pleased that we will probably live to read the final chapter.
This was a real return to form for RJ and he deserves much praise for it.
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on 13 October 2017
In a shocking but welcome shift in quality, this book in the wheel of time series manages to dispel the sluggish pace of the previous and march on triumphantly in to what is one of the best books so far.
Every one of the many story arcs progress more than they have over the past three books, the tension ramps up and the story finally lives up to the potential that has always been there but is quite often missing.
Many of the characters have moved past the annoying slumps that they were in and step up to the roles that will prepare them for the final showdown. I also love that fact that Jordan finally figured out how to balance time between the various characters/plot lines to deliver a much more satisfying experience that is more evenly paced.
This is a thrilling and action packed adventure that I would definitely recommend, it's unfortunate that to get this far you have to trudge through some very trying books that probably deter many from continuing the series.
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on 14 March 2006
I have spent sooo long reading this series. Upto book seven I thought it was amazing but since then it has definitely seen a downturn. The last one was awful, and to be honest this one's not much of an improvement. I have re-read the previous books three times now so that I can get the numerous plots clear before I start reading the latest, but not this time, and that did partly detract from my enjoyment of this volume.
The problem though is that just not enough happens, the book should be half the size, endless chapters of the female characters "straightening their skirts" gets just a bit wearying. A few loose ends are tied up but not near enough to justify the end of the series in one more volume; there is just no way this can happen. Even the most parsimonious writer might struggle to wind up all the plots, not to mention the last battle, in less than another 1000 page volume and Robert Jordan could never be accused of being an economical writer.
I really do hope the next two plus are an improvement, because the story had such promise.
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on 1 July 2010
Book eleven is, in my opinion, one of the best in the series. It's nice to know that Jordan went out on a high, as this is the final instalment that he completed before his death. Mat tries to escape the Seanchan tracking him, Perrin fights to regain his wife from the Shaido, Elayne fights for her crown and Egwene adapts to life as a prisoner of the Tower.

Its a good book because the plot advances at a reasonable pace. It's far from fast, but that's not what you want from an epic on this scale. Plenty of time is taken over the characters and their environments, but stuff continues to happen.

It is clear now that Jordan is getting things ready for the end of the series. Several key storylines that have twisted through the past few volumes are wrapping up, but a few surprises appear. The different groups of characters are beginning to move back together again, and I'm hoping this means an end is in sight to the lack of communication that has interfered with so many of their plans so far.

My earlier criticisms of plot-lines existing purely to keep characters occupied now seems unfounded, as each has grown, presumably in a way that will bear fruit come the last battle. Despite this, the same appears to occur now to Aviendha, who is quickly shunted out of the way. Rand himself suffers again from a fairly limited amount of page time as well which would have been frustrating if the others had not been so interesting. The only other fault in this vein was hat Egwene's story did not continue into the latter half of the book.

As I said, a good farewell to an excellent author. I can only hope that Brandon Sanderson can finish the story off just as well.
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on 22 March 2006
The wait, oh the wait. And finally when I get it it is actually better than the last couple. However, Having waited so long for it, I found that after reading the first chapter, I had to go back and reread several of the more pitiful ones preceding it just to remember who was who, what they were doing and why. Not the main characters to be sure but the mulititued of supporting characters.
Is this over complicated or what? Now I like a convoluted plot with many characters but this series is getting way too many, maybe he should have a cataclysmic disaster which kills off half of the supporting cast so all we have to deal with are a few main players.
Better but still not worth a better rating.
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on 28 December 2005
Like many people I was much less inclined to read this new book "Knife of Dreams" after the last one (Book 10, "Crossroads of Twilight"), which to my horror was utterly dreadful and progressed the Wheel of Time saga not even a little bit. This had been continuing a bad trend for Robert Jordan, going from being the best fantasy author to a massively frustrating time-waster - it began around Book 8, "The Path of Daggers," and things got pretty awful in Book 9 "Winter's Heart," but those books still had some redeeming features, while Book 10 had absolutely none and could even be disregarded in the grand scheme of things.
I was hoping Robert Jordan would somehow "wake up" and realise what was happening to his beloved work. The fact is that nothing actually happened in the last book (10), no revelations of any note, no key story-progressing events, nothing. On reading Book 11, it started off promisingly with an interesting and long (100-page!) prologue, but unfortunately for the next 300 pages or so Robert Jordan returned to what made the last books so bad - rambling on about things of little or no consequence, Aes Sedai sniffing at one another, etc, etc - and it's not before the book reaches the halfway point that everything suddenly changes. Robert Jordan awakes from his slumber and cracks in one of the best chapters he has ever written!
It is not a mere coincidence that this happens when the main protagonist - the main character of the entire Wheel of Time saga - Rand al'Thor, finally gets some 'air time.' Jordan's recent and questionable trend has been to virtually exclude him entirely (you could probably count the number of pages he appeared on in the last book with the fingers of both hands). This has had a detrimental effect in not only making the story less interesting, but the character seems to have lost character, so to speak, with all the other personalities crowding him into the background.
But Jordan makes a triumphant return with al'Thor, and the book definitely picks up a very fast pace from then on, with revelations and key events in almost every chapter, seeming to snowball tumultuously as you get nearer the end of the book. There are a few colossal and decisive battle scenes, some story arcs that have spanned several books finally conclude, not to mention one or two George Martin-esque shock tactics employed in events that show you nobody is invincible (even in a Robert Jordan novel), and an extremely intriguing epilogue that promises so much for the next book...
After the last book I was disillusioned to say the least, and some fans even lost interest. Yet it was amazing to find the likes of Archmaester George RR Martin actually referring respectfully to Robert Jordan (by name!) amidst the text of his latest long-awaited book "A Feast for Crows." That was the book I read before starting Jordan's "Knife of Dreams" and it was most certainly the hardest act to follow. Jordan has done something to restore the faith in this latest instalment of the Wheel of Time, a lot happens, and once you get past the tedium of the first half of the book, it's all worth it. There's plenty of action and intrigue, echoes of what made the likes of Book 7 "Lord of Chaos" one of the great fantasy epics. The slumbering giant of epic fantasy literature, Robert Jordan, seems to be vanquishing his demons at long last - the sleeper awakens.
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