Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Great Hunt by Robert Jordan Read Along: Week 7

If you haven't read the book, or the whole series, why not join in and read along with the rest of us? You can find links to everyone else’s thoughts at Dab of Darkness

This week we read through to the end of the book.

1. Wow! Those a'dam are real mood changers (i.e. Nynaeve's reaction to having all that control over another). Would you be tempted to put any of the characters we have met so far in The Wheel of Time world in an a'dam? Anyone in real life?

I think most of us would agree that we would be jumping for joy if Liandrin happened to find her way into one, and I will add Lanfear and Elaida to the list as well. All these women seem highly unpleasant and full of themselves. We know that Liandrin is Black Ajah, and I would not be surprised to find that Elaida is one as well: she certainly had a very strange reaction to meeting Rand.

I am ashamed to say that there is one ex-friend that I would be more than happy to see trying out an a’dam. I know that I should forgive and forget for my own peace of mind, but somehow I find that very hard to do . . .

2. Perrin still hasn't revealed the full extent of his wolfish powers to his friends. Do you think he's making the right choice? Would you do the same?

I find this a little difficult to understand, because being a wolf-brother is nowhere near as shocking as being the Dragon Reborn. Once Rand admitted the truth to the other two lads I thought that Perrin would come clean as well.

3. We finally learn what has been driving Ingtar to find the Horn. Do you think his final act makes restitution for whatever ills he did as a Dark Friend?

I hope so. Although I cannot condone his decision to become a Darkfriend, he did seem to be genuinely repentant and wanting to make amends for his actions. He certainly sacrificed himself to help those fighting against the Dark One, which must count for something.

Does anyone else see the strong parallels to Boromir? He even expressed the same bitterness about fighting the forces of Darkness whilst many of the other nations were unaware of the terrible toll it was taking on his people.

4. The Horn was sounded and warriors of old appeared and did mighty battle. How did you like the final large battle scene with Seachan, Whitecloaks, Dead Heroes, and Egwene (running amok)?

It was very dramatic and most definitely EPIC!

I really liked Verin’s comment about the pattern delaying their arrival for a particular reason. The final battle was almost cinematic in its execution, with the intertwining of the various plot strands. I was surprised when the Whitecloaks showed up, but they did help to distract the Seanchan. I can hardly begin to imagine how terrifying and awe-inspiring it must have been to watch Rand face off against the Dark One across the sky. Wow!

I was also very impressed by the Heroes themselves. I really liked the way that it felt as if they had just ridden out of their camp: they are so familiar with each other and have such a casual and business-like attitude to fighting. Their banter was excellent, and I look forward to spending much more time with them because they seem like fun, normal people.

5. We get to see Rand in 2 sword fights - one with Turak and one with The Dark One. Which one did you find more satisfying or entertaining?

I enjoyed the fight against Turak because it showed that Rand is truly worthy of his heron-marked sword even if he needs the One Power in order to become that good. It was great to watch Turak’s smug certainty dissolve as this young boy overwhelmed all his years of training. I guess that the fight against the Dark One was actually fairly similar in that it also showed Rand defeating an overconfident opponent. I did think that the point about knowing when to ‘sheath the sword’ was a little labored, and I thought that the reminder with Ingtar a few chapters back was unnecessary, but it still worked very well.

I was so sad to see Rand’s sword get damaged. It is his only remaining link to Tam and has become such an important part of his life that I think that he will feel naked without it.

6. Lanfear chose to reveal her existence to Min, and gave her a message for Rand. Why do you think Min was the lucky one?

I suppose it could simply have been that Min was with him at the time, but it could also been because Min has no power and would therefore be easier to intimidate. After all: we know that Lanfear is happiest when she is making a drama out of a crisis and loves to be the center of attention.

Final Thought:

Yay! They saved Bela! I know that it absurd that I am so concerned over the health of one animal, but that’s just the way I am! :D


  1. Yep, if Perrin knows Rand's big scary secret, and the two of them know Mat's addiction to his dagger, then Perrin should feel a little more relaxed chatting with the two about his wolfish side.

    I can just see you having tea with the Heroes and getting to know them more. Let's see, what kind of cookies would you make them? Lemon bars? Lady's Fingers?

    Totally saw the echoes of Boromir in Ingtar's situation. Tho I am glad that this book had far fewer LotR references compared to Book 1.

    Bela is awesome and I too was glad to see that she was fine and safe at the end of the book.

    1. Strangely, I think the Heroes would be great fun at a tea party and could probably trusted to be polite around the old folk! I can just imagine them sitting about with mugs of tea and dunking cookies whilst recounting their more hilarious battles . . .

      Yep, I was also glad that there were fewer Tolkienesque aspects this time around as I always worry when I read books that remind me too much of LotR: it makes me wonder if the author has enough imagination to produce their own world. I think Mr Jordan shows that he is definitely his own man in this title.


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