The Great Hunt Read Along Part VII

JordanGreatHuntBannerWelcome everyone to the final installment of The Great Hunt Read Along. Today, we cover Chapters 43-End. Thanks to everyone who has participated in this awesome ride. Don’t forget to leave your link in the comments so we can all jump around and visit.

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?

So far the few extremely distasteful folks we’ve met in WoT (Fain, Liandrin), I wouldn’t want to keep alive. At this point, I don’t see a need for their talents and let’s face it, Mother Nature abhors a void and would provide someone else with those talents and hopefully more sense and better personality. Now, in real life, yes, there are several folks that I wouldn’t mind using an a’dam on from time to time. Folks would just be so much happier if they would simply do what I say ;).

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?

Well, Mat hasn’t really gotten better at watching his tongue. So, I can see keeping it from him, or telling him and then threatening his life to keep the secret (tho that isn’t Perrin’s way). Still, rand could use some brotherly support and sharing Perrin’s secret might help him emotionally. However, Rand may very well go insane and either blab or decide Perrin’s wolfish nature is evil and kill him, so I guess that isn’t really an option wither. He could safely tell Egwene, except she wants to be part of the sisterhood who would happily dissect Perrin to figure out how the wolf communication works. Damn! I guess Perrin is making the right choice by keeping it to himself as much as possible.

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?
The families of those who died back at the keep due to him letting in the Trollocs may or may not think so. But I have to go with Rand’s belief that once you no longer want to serve the dark, then that is that. Yes, you still need to do acts to follow it up, and you may never make up your past transgressions fully in this life, but I don’t think Ingtar’s soul is going to the Dark One’s Hall of Questionable Deeds and Foul Friends to be a bouncer.
Pico & Heldig don't often snuggle, so I joined them with a book.

Pico & Heldig don’t often snuggle, so I joined them with a book.

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)?

Ummm…. well, I have to say that I was really, really looking forward to seeing the Warriors of the Horn stomp some Seachan and/or Trolloc ass. Alas, Robert Jordan went all nebulous on us and kind of glossed over what must have been a very epic battle, a battle of the ages (even if it was brief). Sigh.

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?

Definitely the sword fight with Turak. Turak was all smug, and I disliked him because he brought grief and woe to Egwene, Nynaeve, Min and Bela. Jerk. And we actually got to see it play out. Once again, the confrontation between Rand and the Dark One goes all dreamscape on us and, as with the ending of the first book, I did not find this very satisfying.

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 think Min just happened to be in the awkward place at the awkward moment – Rand’s bed. Otherwise, Lanfear would have simply stopped by while Rand was still unconscious from his epic, but nebulous, battle with the the Dark One and tousled his hair, perhaps rearranged his clothing, maybe even left some monkey bite in an awkward and embarrassing place. But no, there would be a witness to this admittedly juvenile behavior. So, she goes with Plan B – looking all ethereal and badass and threatening, nay promising, to make Rand hers. Plan B was probably more effective anyway.

Other Tidbits:

At the end, Loial offers to stay with Rand and see the adventure through, because they are friends. And Lioal would be bored otherwise. Too cute.

Ouch, Min! She said the truth, but still, I could feel the sting of those words from here, a world away and decades after they were put down on paper. Poor Egwene. Still, Egwene had pretty much made her choice when she joined the aes sedai, so this is probably a good example of tinkle or get off the pot. Not that I would compare Rand to a toilet seat – that would be very wrong!

I think Egwene may have gone a little mad once her collar was removed. She definitely didn’t seem to be holding back when it came to blowing up….uh, city blocks.

What Others Think:

On Starships and Dragonwings

Coffee, Cookies, & Chili Peppers

Musings on Fantasia

14 thoughts on “The Great Hunt Read Along Part VII

  1. Eivind Fonn says:

    Ah! Two down, twelve to go.

    1. I have a good candidate. I’m sure in time you will agree with me once it happens.

    2. Well this is just depressing, isn’t it? Call me crazy, but I think he could talk to Nynaeve. She’s supposed to be very protective of her Two Rivers folks, and her dislike for Aes Sedai is no secret exactly. Early series Nynaeve isn’t among the most well loved characters, but she kind of grows on me every time I reread (which is once, so far.)

    3. I’m not sure we will ever find out actually, but at least this answers several questions. It was Ingtar who masterminded the Trolloc attack, Fain’s escape and the assassination attempt, and very likely he was the Shienaran mentioned by ‘Bors’ in the prologue (and it’s a fair guess that Liandrin was one of the Aes Sedai, too.)

    4. Ah, well, if there’s any consolation you will have battles coming out of your ears by the time you wrap this series up. Personally I really like this ending and I don’t mind it being nebulous. Just the small chat between Rand, Hawkwing and Birgitte is really cool. The imagery of Birgitte riding across water to set the last Seanchan ship on fire. Rand fighting Ba’alzamon IN THE SKY. Ingtar’s last stand and Egwene’s righteous fury. No, I was plenty satisfied.

    6. I hadn’t thought about that, but I agree with your assessment that she was probably just in the wrong (or right?) place at the wrong/right time. Although it’s notable that she’s the only big female character who can’t channel.

    Other:

    Egwene actually develops a bit of an irrational fear of Seanchan from this, which becomes a Thing later. (Actually come to think of it, it’s not very irrational at all.)

    I also find it amusing that the Seanchan were essentially defeated by Hawkwing, from whom they claim descent and the rightful authority over Randland. (Since they never get an official name, that’s what they’re often called.)

    Also worth noting is that two more seals are now broken. There are only four left, and we have no idea where they are.

    I told you earlier that you should keep an eye on Verin. Any ideas as to what I’m thinking about?

    • nrlymrtl says:

      Great comments, as always. Yes, I too found it amusing that Hawkwing was the one to trounce the Seachan. And I am also glad to hear there will be more battles in the upcoming books.

      I do so like Nynaeve. I have heard several folks say she is annoying in the early books, but I can’t help but enjoy her practicality, independence and protectiveness of Two Rivers. You’re probably right that Perrin could confide in her, but he probably still sees her as unapproachable because of her age and her previous station in Two Rivers.

      I can totally understand why Egwene would develop a Thing against the Seachan. I look forward to seeing how she handles it.

      Hmm….you’re hinting at Verin….well, we know that she is addicted to knowledge. So, I would be very curious to see what she does with the a’dam. I can totally see her letting research on the magic behind the making and using of the a’dam completely consume her and potentially make her a harmful person instead of a helpful person.

      • Eivind Fonn says:

        Well, here’s the deal. In chapter 14, when Verin catches up with Ingtar & Co., she has this to say:

        “Moiraine Sedai sent me, Lorg Ingtar,” Verin announced with a satisfied smile. “She thought you might need me.”

        Then, in the final chapter.

        “I did not send Verin.” Moiraine frowned. “She did that on her own.”

        What’s more, Aes Sedai are supposed to be unable to lie, so this definitely smells fishy. Some possible explanations that have been offered over the years:

        (a) Verin is Black and able to lie. But… she doesn’t act very evil.
        (b) For whatever reason Verin didn’t take the oaths.
        (c) She was tricked by someone masquerading as Moiraine.
        (d) She is using typical Aes Sedai tricks to make statements that are literally true but misleading (i.e. “Moiraine sent me for something totally unrelated several years ago”).
        (e) Moiraine said someting more vague and Verin mistakenly interpreted her.

        • nrlymrtl says:

          Or Moiraine could be black ajah,and hence can lie, and was lying to to whoever about not sending Verin in order to cast suspicion away from her or plant doubts in someone’s mind. Hmmm….Well, I guess I will have to finish the series to find out.

          • suecccp says:

            Crumbs! If Moiraine is Black Ajah, then she’s going about things in a really weird way . . . also, the kids would all be in so much more trouble. I think it is much more likely that Verin is Black, but in a “this is interesting, I’ll research it” kind of way: she doesn’t seem to have done anything evil yet.

      • suecccp says:

        I really like Nynaeve, but that could be because I am grumpy most of the time as well! You are right though: she would be the perfect person for Perrin to talk to.

        I suspect that Egwene will handle her issue by blowing up every Seanchan she sees, which seems perfectly reasonable after what she’s been through. I’m almost surprised that she wasn’t trying to blow their ships out of the water! :D

  2. Anya says:

    Here’s mine: http://www.onstarshipsanddragonwings.com/2013/04/07/the-great-hunt-read-along-week-7/

    I’m going to go curl up in a pile of kleenex now, but I’ll be back later :D

  3. Liesel says:

    Like Eivind, I don’t mind the nebulous ending. I think you could argue that because Rand, to such a great extent, still has NO idea what’s going on around him, he perceives it that way. As things go on, and he understands more about the universe, the Pattern, and his role in it, things become clearer. I also think you make a good point about Perrin having good reasons not to tell anyone. I didn’t think about it that way before. :D

    • nrlymrtl says:

      Having read everyone’s answers today, it seems everyone enjoyed that final battle scene. So….It’s probably just me. So much of the rest of the book is told in such awesome detail that I think change in the story-telling mode threw me. But it’s happened that way twice now, once at the end of each book, so I will keep an open mind for it in Book 3.

  4. suecccp says:

    1. I wonder if my hubby would pick up his dirty socks if I had him on an a’dam????? :D

    2. I think you might be judging Rand a little harshly there . . . I haven’t really felt imminent madness just yet . . .

    4. I can understand your disappointment, although I quite like the decision to focus on individual experiences of the battle rather than the ‘big picture’. We did get that glimpse of Birgitte riding over the water to fire at one of the fleeing ships, though, which I thought was a nice hint at how epic the Heroes really are.

    5. Again, I agree with your dissatisfaction with Rand’s fight with the DO. I think one major problem with these dream-like sequences is that we are beginning to slightly distrust Rand as a narrator, so we are not quite sure how much of it is in his head. This makes for uncomfortable reading.

    6. I’m glad that I’m not the only one who thinks Lanfear is immature: she is all pouty and stompy in her teenagerness! :D

    I think there should be a picture of Loial next to the dictionary definition of ‘cute’! :D

    Yeah, I could imagine the other girls looking at Egwene like she had totally lost the plot when she started blowing up the streets: I bet Nynaeve was impressed though . . .

    • nrlymrtl says:

      It took me years to get my man to put his socks in the hamper. Finally, if I found them any place but the laundry or his sock drawer, I would tie them in knots and give them to the dogs to play with.

      True, Rand isn’t loosing it yet, so maybe I was a little harsh. Altho…..let’s see, you make a good point about him possibly being an unreliable narrator.

      I think I am the only one who didn’t get into the final battle scene, so it’s probably just me. As I was saying to Liesel on her post perhaps it is because the rest of the book is very detailed and then we get to the final fight scene, the culmination of this Horn quest, etc. and Jordan goes all nebulous on me. Sigh. change of pace was a little more than my brain could handle.

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