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The Dragon Reborn Readalong Final Week!

The Dragon Reborn Readalong

Okay, I’m back! I got a little behind there for a bit, but I finished The Dragon Reborn at about midnight last night, woot!

1) We saw Rand at the beginning of TDR, and then VERY briefly throughout, and then at the end. Overall, for the main character, he wasn’t in the book much. What do you think of this format? Did it work? 
I actually really liked the focus shifting to the three women with some storyline for Mat and Perrin as well. I have to admit, I think I got tired of Rand constantly trying to not be the dragon. It was nice to see more of the world with the characters spread far and wide and find out more about the Tower than Rand will ever show us.
2) This time when Rand “killed” Ba’alzamon, there was a body left behind, and everyone seemed to agree that he was dead this time. Yet, Moiraine insists this isn’t the Dark One, but probably Ishmael, one of the Forsaken. What do you think of this explanation? Is she right? Is it believable? If so, what does it mean for Rand and his friends?
Definitely right. I was highly suspicious of the embodiment of pure evil leaving a body behind. Also, it’s a little early in the series for the baddest of bad guys to be dead ;-). I like the idea that Ishmael was impersonating the Dark Lord this whole time and trying to take out Rand himself, good strategy really! This of course means that there are more books in which they prepare to battle the Dark Lord himself :D.
3) Julian Sandar betrayed our girls, but then felt guilty and helped Mat get into the Stone. Do you think we’ll see him again? Will he will be ally or foe from here on out? (Also he’s totally crushing on Nynaeve. Do you see that coming back into the story at all?)
I can forgive him his lapse to be honest, given that he was probably under mindcontrol of some kind and not just because of a pretty face ;-). Those Black Ajah have already shown that they can mess with people’s heads, so you can’t really blame an ordinary guy for falling prey. I think it was actually really brave of him to turn around and help as soon as he realized what had happened. He’ll probably show up again, since characters at his level of involvement always seem to! As long as there is no love triangle ;-).
4) Perrin sort of had a meltdown and went into full knight-in-shining-armor mode when Faile was suddenly in danger. He defied both Moiraine and Hopper, putting his life (and perhaps more?) in danger to save her. Did you see that coming? What do you think their relationship will be now?
Yeah, that was a bit over the top for me. I realize that there had been brewing of feelings before, but he thought she was annoying half the time (yes, love is like that, I definitely know, hehe), but I wanted a bit more of a “I think I actually have feelings for her” before he risks his life majorly to save hers. Oh well, I like the wolf dream battles! Yey Hopper!
5) Quite a bit is revealed at the end of TDR about the role the Aiel will play. This was an earlier question we had. What do you think of their role and how will it impact the story?
The Aiel are so cool <3. I love what is going on with Mat and the two sisters, haha. It’s quite awesome that Rand now has the world’s best fighting people on his side, but I’m wondering about that prophecy of theirs. Where are they going to go once all of this happens? We don’t need another Aiel War!
6) There were some people who didn’t like how nebulous the endings of books 1 and 2 were. How did you feel about this ending? Did it work? Did you have any complaints?
I apparently will never get the epic battle I’m expecting ;-). I liked the four different hero groups all converging on the tower for their own reasons and briefly seeing each other in the madness. I also quite liked Rand’s battle running along a knife’s edge, it was cool imagery. I liked Moraine’s use of balefire, but it seemed a bit brief given how epic it was. I mean, she killed a Forsaken with lost knowledge of the One Power right? Shouldn’t that get more than a sentence of description? I just like Moraine really ;-).
Anya from On Starships and Dragonwings -A

© 2013, Anya. All rights reserved.

Comments

  1. 2. There is something endearingly sad about one of the Forsaken impersonating the Dark One: no wonder Lanfear despises him!

    3. I got the impression that Liandrin had used her powers of ‘persuasion’ on him, so I can’t hold him responsible either. She really needs to get fitted with that a’dam ASAP!

    4. I’m pretty sure that he would have pursued any of the others in the same way, though perhaps with a little less desperation. Just imagine if he had discovered Loial like that: he would have been into that Wolf Dream like a shot.

    5. I suspect that nothing is going to be simple for Rand in his attempts to rally all the nations to his cause. We already know that the leaders of the Children are either Darkfriends or trying to use him as a way to rally everyone behind them. Then there are the Forsaken messing with many of the other nations and the Seanchan and Aes Sedai are also going to be difficult to talk round. I predict that it will take approximately another 10.75 books before he gets everyone to cooperate! :D

    6. I understand what you mean about the balefire. It was so brief and almost came out of nowhere, that it was almost an anticlimax. I wondered if this was supposed to mirror Moiraine’s shock at how effective it was.

    • 4. Very true, though he’s known Loial a bit longer. I think if the friendship/loyalty had been the emphasis of why he went, I would have been happier than the love storyline ;-).

  2. I love the Aiel too, and wolf dream battles. They’re awesome! Perrin’s feelings might have been sudden, but my first response when I first read it was, “lucky freakin’ duck!” Faile has a hot, buff guy that likes her and can totally talk to wolves in T’A’R. She’d better appreciate him! :D And I promise, if you can stick it out, you’ll love the final book! It’s like one big huge epic battle! Yea!

    • Haha, yey huge epic battle! I’m pretty sure I’ll be good once I hit Sanderson’s part since I love his writing style so much ;-)

  3. I too enjoyed having this book be bigger than Rand and focused more on the ladies, Perrin, and Mat. The brief glimpses we got of Rand being all angsty were enough to give me an idea of where he was emotionally and physically in the story.

    Do you think Mat will be able to stay in one piece around the Aiel? If he insults one of the warrior ladies, I am sure she will let him know – but will he survive the notice? hehe!

    I liked Mat goofing around on the roof and finding all sorts of folks up there. But, yeah, then the big battle happens pretty quickly with lots of folks doing miraculous things. I liked that it was more in the grounded world and not having it all be in the dream world.

    • I agree: we saw just enough of Rand to keep in touch, but what we did see was not all that happy, so I was quite pleased that we didn’t see much more.

      I have a suspicion that Mat might get a very thorough training in how to treat ladies if those ‘sisters’ get their way . . . if you know what I mean! >:D

      • Haha, Mat would be such a gentleman afterwards! Though he might be willing if he realizes that the sisters are together in everything *wiggles eyebrows* hehe

    • Exactly! Though now I’m wondering if the next book with be “and this is what Rand was doing”… probably not though since we already had the big battle. Time will tell :D I think I also super like have female main characters (I just connect with them better I think), so that was nice in this book, haha.

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