I brought up Jordan again because on another thread I was surprised to find that someone was already thinking of skipping reading Jordan and his WoT just because of the prevalent trend of people railing against WoT. I can understand the popular backlash to some extent but surely it has gone way too far when it is already taking the form of the poisoning of the opinions of would-be readers. It seems there still needs to be some more INTELLIGENT discussion on the relative merits Jordan's work possesses.
Let me clarify and correct one or two common gripes against Jordan:
He is Slow, Long, and Boring
True in certain parts Jordan goes on and on with useless descriptions that can be described as nothing more than filler--more so in his most recent works. This view, however, must be tempered with the understanding that when we are talking about Jordan and the Wheel of Time we are also talking about one of the most enthralling reads in all fantasy, and IMO--among all I have read--the worthiest of being called the pinnacle of fantasy soap opera bar none.
He is Bubblegumish
Again true. This is not the darkest most depressing gothic tale ever told. There is a certain campiness in dealing with a lot of characters and situations. There is no clear political or philosophical message readily apparent and if there was one it probably would come across as pretty lame. Doesn't mean the story is bad and not worth reading for those who seek entertainment. On the contrary it is extremely good.
My main point: The best criticisms of Jordan must be accompanied with some pretty strong qualifications. A fair evaluation of Jordan recognizes both his weaknesses and his strengths. All I seem to be hearing is the former.
One must wonder then how Jordan is bad and not worth reading. This is especially so when he can get people who snicker about his work to still buy the ninth edition in hardcover. Even for those who truly did give up on him, the majority will admit they did so at around book 6. Again if all of it was that bad how could they bear reading six books before they gave up? Only those who gave up on book 1 do I see as having an understandably bad opinion of Jordan. Eye of the World displayed most of what makes Jordan bad and I can only feel sorry for them for what they are missing out on.
For those just beginning with Jordan just remember the skill and thrill of the prologue can be found later on in larger quantitites once the story gets going around 2/3 of the way through EotW and continues in higher gear for the next three books.
*Oh just in case, a message for the moderators:
Please don't close the thread unless you can refer me to a better one. The best exclusively Jordan thread I've seen so far begins with an unmarked spoiler and some of the others I found using a search aren't there anymore when you click on them.*
[This message has been edited by Bond (edited January 12, 2002).]