This book started off so slow that I could not bring myself to pick it up for awhile. The entire prologue was painful to read, mainly because of the Aes Sedai investigation into the Black Ajah. I hate all the different names and trying to remember who is who.
In fact, that is probably my biggest problem with the books in general. It is difficult to remember who all of the characters are after while. You have Windfinders, Aes Sedai, Asha’men, Seanchan, rulers, Chosen and their different identities, Kinswomen, Knitting Circles, and pretty much any other folks Jordan can add.
Fortunately, as I read through some of the boring stuff, I kept in mind that at any moment the action could pick up. And I was correct. The second half of the book was very good. The tension comes to a head during the final few chapters.
Rand and Nynaeve use the Choedan Kal to cleanse saidin from the ruins of Shadar Logoth. It was such a great thing because while they are engaged, Rand has plenty of folks protecting him. Cadsuane leads a bunch of Aes Sedai and Asha’men against the Foresaken. The point of view keeps switching to a different character and reminds me of a great movie scene. By the end of the book though, Nynaeve and Rand are exhausted and are basically comatose from exhaustion. Oh, and they were successful in removing the taint.
Mat makes his escape from Ebou Dar (and from being a sex slave to the queen, yeah, it was a tough job) and in the process he rescues some Aes Sedai who are forced into becoming damane and some Seanchan who need to get away from their own people, plus the smuggler who helped him and Rand a long time ago named Bayle Domon. Early in the book we learn that Tuon is the Daughter of the Nine Moons, who we know Mat is supposed to marry. At the end of the book, when he learns this as well, he does something very rash: he kidnaps Tuon.
Also, there was a bunch of stuff early on about Elayne taking control of the throne and how it would need to happen. Plus, Perrin is trying to find Faile. Oh, and Elayne gets pregnant with Rand’s baby. How did this happen? Well, obviously they had sex. Aviendha, Min, and Elayne decide to bond Rand to themselves and basically agree to share him. Aviendha and Min get drunk, while Elayne and Rand go bang. Apparently they can all feel it while they are doing it.
Instead of making predictions that will be way off, I want to ask if anyone knows of a site that has a character listing and bios, but with a feature to put in what book you are on. I found something like this for A Song of Ice and Fire. You put in the book you are on and it blocks out any information that happens later on. I have looked up a character and learned things about future events on accident a few times. It sucks…