So I just finished book two of Robert Jordan's The Wheel of
Time, The Great Hunt. It was a fantastic read, and reinforced my huge,
enormous, colossal love for fantasy. Jordan really stepped up the
intrigue in the second installment. While I loved the first book, I was a bit
worried that the series might devolve into a reductive battle of good and evil.
But in The Great Hunt, he shows that there are many more factions than
we had believed, and even within those factions there is infighting as goals
clash. And that’s what I love best about epic fantasy – the fully imagined
worlds with rationally motivated power struggles, even (especially?) in the presence
of tremendous evils like The Dark One.
But now I have to put my Jordan reading on hold! Brandon
Sanderson is launching his own epic fantasy series (even while he’s finishing Jordan’s
series)! I’m about 1/2 through the massive The
Way of Kings, and so far it’s thrilling! A culture he describes exacts an
interesting method of racism – the family lines with light
colored eyes form a noble class, while those so unlucky to have black or brown
eyes are in the bottom of the caste system. It’s a great allegory to the
equally arbitrary discrimination based on skin color.
So. Why do you love fantasy? The fifteen most interesting comments (including a mailing address, or email, so I can contact you) will receive a complementary Advanced Reader's Copy of The Way of Kings!