Knife of Dreams, Part II

JordanKnifeOfDreamsBannerWelcome everyone to Book 11 of The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan. You can find the schedule to Knife of Dreams over HERE. Everyone is welcome to join us!

This week, I am your host. Make sure to catch Eivind in the comments. Make sure to swing by Liesel’s Musings on Fantasia for cool non-spoilery fan art and hop on over to Sue’s Coffee, Cookies, & Chili Peppers for some great deductive reasoning skills in calculating how things will fall out with the plot.

For the second week in a row, I am a bit late posting. This week, I blame a sinus infection that has me in a frustrating amount of pain. the headache is killer!

This week, we covered Chapters 2-7. Spoilers run rampant for this section and all previous books below!

1) Beonin, Ashmanaille, & Phaedrine chat about theories on who the channeling male murderer is. Did you enjoy Beonin’s logic? Do you think other Aes Sedai are drawing the same conclusions? Will such assumptions and conclusions hinder Rand’s plans in preparing for the Last Battle?

The Aes Sedai seem pretty bent on laying these murders at Rand’s feet. In the end, I fear this will allow Halima to go undetected for a great length of time and allow him/her to wreak some major havoc later on.

And why do none of these Aes Sedai think outside the box? Has the traditional White Tower ruined the collective thinking power of a whole generation of Aes Sedai?

And of course, I do fear that these assumptions will come to hinder Rand’s plans, like he needs any more hindering with the constant war her has going on inside himself.

2) Elaida had thought to show the world her power by snatching a monarch in the night and she plans to show even greater power by putting that monarch back on his royal seat. Do you think Mattin Stepaneos, king of Illian, will be cooperative? What other setbacks to Elaida’s plan can you predict?

I expect Mattin to be cooperative to a point – like that point in which he once again sits a throne. Then I expect he will throw it back in Elaida’s teeth and the White Tower will take another hit in reputation. Egwene is going to have tons of community outreach to do once she takes over.

And of course I expect many other rulers will no longer welcome Aes Sedai to their throne rooms after this, expecting (or fearing) such blatant betrayal of all common courtesy. People won’t cower before Elaida; instead, they will be hiring hitmen to take her out.

3) Once again the Forsaken get together for a tickle and tell dinner party. We saw some new technology on display. Do you think we will see further advanced tech and in more prominent use as the series continues? Do you think Moiridin can keep them all in line?

For several books now, there have been hints and some small demonstrations of advanced tech. However, I expect Jordan will keep that low key for the entire series, as this is primarily a fantasy series, not scifi/fantasy. While genre boundaries don’t matter as much these days (thank goodness), they were in full use when this series started. Hence, due to fan base expectations, I doubt the publisher would be OK with a storyline veering away from the core fantasy genre.

Some of the Forsaken are already plotting to kill Moiridin. The Forsaken have not struck me as particularly bright, but I think that can also be said of Moiridin (who is brutal and a bit crazy). So I doubt he will be able to get them all to do everything he requires of them and he may even be taken out by the Forsaken.

4) Perrin meets with the Seanchan. Were you impressed with his display of martial capability? What about that sulfur stench? Even if this plan goes off without a hitch, do you see continued friendly relationships between Perrin’s forces and the Seanchan?

I loved Perrin’s simple yet elegant display of martial capability. Obviously, the Seanchan came to a swift appreciation for the Two Rivers longbow.

What is up with the Hell Hounds (the source of the sulfur stench)? They seem to be keeping tabs on Perrin, or someone in his group. Like scouts seeking out the target and then reporting back. Of course this has me concerned as no one enjoys tangling with a Hell Hound, let alone a pack of them.

Yes, I expect the Seanchan will continue friendly negotiations with Perrin after Faile is safely back home. For one thing, Perrin is a straight shooter and the Seanchan will learn quickly that they can deal with him openly and honestly. Second, it shoulnd’t be long before the Seanchan in Randland start hearing about the calamity that has struck their homeland; they will need allies.

5) Faile has a lot of decisions to make, and soon. She is determined to escape before Perrin can attempt a rescue; she has the Oath Rod; Galina appears near breaking; and Rolan is still putting flowers in her hair. Will her actions muck up Perrin’s rescue? Will Galina’s duplicity be undone? Will Rolan get even one romantic night, one which will never be spoken of again?

Oh es! I totally expect Faile to muck up Perrin’s plans, potentially getting people injured or killed. I can’t blame her for wanting to escape, but her unhealthy attitude of showing up Perrin is juvenile.

Uh….perhaps I have mentioned before how ridiculous I find Faile’s character?

I am SO looking forward to Galina’s duplicity being caught. But knowing the Aes Sedai, she could very well sneak off in all the mayhem and she won’t have to pay for her actions.

You know, I would be OK with Rolan being granted one night of Faile sexytimes. I think this would mellow Faile considerably towards the women who pursue Perrin. At least, she wouldn’t be able to give Perrin any more shit. Not justly, anyways. Perrin seems to be the kind of guy who would take it for a lifetime.

6) Mat has bought a new horse, razor breed, and given Tuon a pet name (Precious) to counter her little pet name for him (Toy). And then we learn that Noal is related to Jain Farstrider! Guesses as to why Noal has such strong feelings on the adventures of his cousin?

I am guessing that Noal may be Jain Farstrider and decided to dissemble a bit by saying he was his cousin. Noal sure did speak vehemently about Jain going of on adventure and leaving his wife to die alone. Sounds like Noal has major regrets. I can see him being a good guiding force in Mat’s life, if Mat can stop thinking of him as an old harmless idiot.

7) Mat’s little ter’angreal secret is out and the Aes Sedai traveling with the circus are VERY curious. Do you think this will cause a problem later? Bethamin, a former sul’dam, channeled some powerful weave, to her great distress. Could she turn out to be a powerful Aes Sedai in the future?

Once again, I expect the Aes Sedai to pester or outright ‘borrow’ Mat’s ter’angreal for study. And of course, in the very long run, I expect some baddie to eventually hear of this extra protection Mat has and instead of channeling like a good channeler, just go for the throat (which, unfortunately, may actually work).

Yes, I think some of the sul’dam wil prove to be as powerful as the top ranking Aes Sedai, much to the Aes Sedais’ distress. 😉

Other Tidbits:

Beonin spilled all to Elaida! This is a problem. A big one. I feel sorry for Beonin’s Warder who was left in the dark about this one.

Some of the Shaido gai’shain have sought protection in the beds of their captors. I believe there was one brief mention of a woman gai’shain seeking out her female captor’s bed. I truly appreciate the diversity Jordan built in to this series, in so many ways.

3 thoughts on “Knife of Dreams, Part II”

  1. Mat and Noal: Yeah this is yet another example of Mat making up his mind about someone, lumping them into a majorly over-generalized category, and not being able to see past the label he’s put on them. That said, I do feel bad for him about the medallion. Chances are he’s going to be pulling disappearing acts left and right just to keep it in his own hands. 😀 My WoT Post

  2. 1. I was underwhelmed by Beonin’s logic. Seems to me like she’s rationalizing a conclusion that she already wants to believe. The theory lacks motive, for one thing. I do think other sisters will draw the same conclusions, but only because it suits them to do so, not because they are any more correct. And yes, such assumptions will of course hinder Rand, even though I don’t think this one in particular will stand out as being very troublesome. There’s a lot of damaging misconceptions about the Dragon Reborn that he has struggled hard to disprove (likewise, a lot of ideas that he has ended up proving right). So if you can say that this falls into the same category, then sure.

    2. I expect this plan is too complicated, too outlandish, and far too late to be anything other than a single chapter in a Wheel of Time book. I hope he won’t be cooperative, just because it’s so nice to see someone not give Elaida the time of day. Even if Elaida is quite capable of dominating him… I just like to see him do it.

    3. This is a fantasy series, but it’s set in a late medieval or early renaissance type world, and the theme of technological advancement is shown every now and then (the school in Cairhien, among other things). As Ishamael has been working over the last three thousand years to halt human development, we see now under Rand’s guidance a kind of renaissance. It will only continue, but maybe not before the main sequence of books is over.

    4. Yeah, I wonder who thought of that. Perrin doesn’t strike me as the showman. My money is on Berelain. I believe the stench was another one of those bubbles of evil that are so plaguing the world right now.

    For the moment, I forecast sunny weather for the Seanchan and Perrin.

    5. Please, Faile, for once will you just not do anything? I have more faith in Perrin being able to get her out than I have in her getting herself out. And I so badly want Perrin to beat Sevannas head in with a rock… Don’t rob me of this moment, please.

    Rolan… eeh. I’m torn. It would be a nice turn of events for Faile (regarding Berelain), but then again, Perrin is moving swiftly and I don’t think Faile is that desperate yet.

    6. Related to Jain Farstrider my ass. If Noal isn’t Jain himself then I’m Bela. It’s evident from the way he’s speaking that he’s trying to hide something. And on top of that we have his amazing array of stories, told from his point of view. Furthermore, as readers we can be genre savvy. 😉

    Farstrider’s past is interesting. As a young man he helped capture Cowin, Isam’s father, who betrayed Malkier to its doom (book 1, chapter 47). That makes him maybe 20 or so years older than Lan. He vanished some 16 years before the start of book 1, on his way home from the blight (book 1, glossary entry).

    In book 1, chapter 51, Ishamael says this: “Jain Farstrider, a hero… whom I painted to look like a fool and sent to the Ogier thinking he was free of me.”

    Probably Ishamael was responsible for him vanishing in the blight, then. This also connects nicely with Loial’s story in book 1, chapter 42. A man came to the stedding shortly after the Aiel War (this fits), almost dead. “He said the Dark One intended to blind the Eye of the World, and slay the Great Serpent, kill time itself.” So Ishamael must have planted this rumor to bring Rand to the Eye.

    7. Ah, no. Mat’s the boss here, I hope ;-). And yeah, I’m cheering for Bethamin, though I can’t remember what became of her and this storyline.

    Other. Boo, Beonin! Boo! And uh-oh… Elaida knows Traveling. That could negate the whole advantage gained by closing the harbors. If only Elaida had half the mind to share the knowledge, she could win this war. But she doesn’t seem to have any idea of how to use what she’s given (which we already knew to be honest).

  3. I must say that I really admire this readalong – it’s so EPIC!! Kind of sorry I didn’t get involved from the start and give this series a go but it’s too late to bemoan that now!
    Lynn 😀

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