Hi everyone. I am currently reading the first book The Eye of the World of The Wheel of Time series. I am almost halfway through it and yes (you guessed it, genius!), this isn’t a review. This post encompasses my initial thoughts about the book and it’s similarities with LOTR.
This book is very good. Well, so far anyway. Characters are nicely detailed and story is written very impressively.
It’s high fantasy, also called epic fantasy. This, as most of you know, means a fantasy story set in some other world which doesn’t exist in the real life and is conceived by the writer in his mind.
Undoubtedly, Late John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, an English writer and professor, was the pioneer in this genre and is still considered as the father of modern fantasy because of his writings based on a fictional world called Middle Earth. Most popular being The Hobbit and it’s follow-up & immensely applauded, The Lord of the Rings (LOTR hereon) which was turned into a highly successful movie franchise by Peter Jackson.
You know them Hobbits, Dwarfs, Elves, Orcs; you’ve obviously read them. Well, if you haven’t……. really?
LOTR was released in 1950s. Since then, countless writers and novelists have written Epic Fantasy novels set in their own contrived virtual worlds but only few stirred the imagination of readers like Tolkien did.
Now, to the point. The book I’m currently holding in my hands is Robert Jordan’s take on Epic Fantasy. And, I adore it so far. It’s doing well to sacrifice my A Song of Ice and Fire (which, by the way, is my favorite fantasy series) withdrawals symptoms in the fire to appease The Lord of Light, R’hllor (umm okay maybe not!).
Yes it’s a great read. But I can’t help but notice a few similarities with LOTR. Both stories start in a peaceful, remote countryside village whose dwellers are mostly oblivious to the outside world and outside world to them. Both have 2-3 youngsters about the same age who glimpse mysterious black clad riders. In both stories, these youngsters have to leave the village to a safe place. Both stories have a big-scale event in the village at the beginning. In both stories, the main character’s father had some adventures prior to the story (Remember Bilbo Baggins’ adventures in The Hobbit?) which are unknown to him but are otherwise important to the story. And so on…
Of course, these resemblances are pretty elusive and do absolutely nothing to spoil the copious amount of fun I’m having while reading this book. Even if you’re a die-hard LOTR fan you won’t mind it much. I don’t either. It’s an inspiration, not an imitation. There are various novel (no pun intended!) elements in this book.
Did I metion this series is ENORMOUS? About 14-15 books! Fourteen-fifteen FAT books! Thousands of characters! A huge, complex plot! Even bigger than A Song of Ice and Fire!
I love big fat fantasy stories. Moreover, this series is high in quality going by the reviews. The concept of Aes Sedai is simply amazing and the characters are really well written.
I should finish it within a week. Stay tuned for the full review soon. Thanks for reading this post and visiting my blog!