A Crown of Swords (The Wheel of Time, #7), review
After just 12 days, I just finished A Crown of Swords, the 7th book of The Wheel of Time.
Given some personal circumstances, I find myself with more time to listen to audiobooks, so that's why this is probably the fastest I've ever read a book in my life. After Lord of Chaos I've found the seventh book more interesting.
This book just continues the events of the story, so my overall opinion is still a bit of the same. It feels like we're just watching events happen, following people around doing things that sometimes feel too mundane or without a clear and specific purpose. It's like we are seeing the scenes that would be cut in other stories. But it still has its charm, and in this instance more happens.
It's probably because we follow Rand for longer, doing random things all over. I really like how at this point he's more comfortable with his powers and position, although he still feels terribly responsible for many things, which clearly shows the mental burden he carries.
We see the powers taking place also with Matt and his Ta'veren status. I really like this because it feels like a passive power that none of them control and that sometimes turns out well and sometimes doesn't. It's not an absolute, they are as much in the hands of destiny as their enemies.
I really like Matt, so the fact that we follow him for a while on this book it's also a positive for me. It's even nicer because we have most of our main characters together, well, mostly split in two, but it's much nicer than having them all individually doing their own thing.
There are also a bunch more confrontations that make me wonder and be hooked into the plot. I loved how the Aes Sedai are forced to realise that they should chill a bit and stop pretending they are the rules of the world. Yes, I freaking hate the Aes Sedai 😂, not all of course, but the air of superiority that surrounds them is so exaggerated and palpable on every scene that becomes infuriating. That's what has made me love the appearance of the Asha'man.
One thing that still tickles me after having finished is how there are a couple of scenes that don't resolve with answers. There are a couple of characters that appear and we don't know who they are. I love this sense of mystery which is not that common in this story.
And I guess that summarizes my issue with the overall story. There is no mystery. Don't get me wrong, of course there are things we don't know and get revealed on time. But overall there is no big mystery that I'm eager to know. We know who is the Dark Lord; their followers are known; even the steps we need to take to destroy them and what needs to happen in the last battle. We may not know all the details, but there is no big mystery either. We are just here for the ride of seeing our characters' lives.
Nothing illustrates more clearly this aspect of just progressing through a big plot that the ending of the books. They mostly seem just another scene that could be anywhere else, and the ending of this book seven is no different. After spending the entire book following Rand around, the book ends just by doing another one of his incursions. Yes, there is a bit of a bigger battle and a tense chapter, which is great!, but the payout doesn't feel that big.
In any case, I already have book 8 ready. Let's go!
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