Overview (No Spoilers): Fourteen books later, I’ve now finished the penultimate installment in the Wheel of Time series and I’m not ready for this adventure to end. I’ve been leisurely reading this series, making sure to have at least one different book in between the subsequent novels to allow each story to stand on its own and not have the series become a blurred mass. That being said, reflecting upon how far this series has come and how our favorite characters and the literary world they inhabit have evolved is a bit overwhelming to ponder. Its amazing Jordan could keep it all straight and no wonder fans reread this series over and over and over again. The Towers of Midnight definitely set the stage for the last book, with many loose ends being resolved, and events that have been alluded to for the past three books finally coming to a head. Much time, early in this novel was spent in Perrin’s company, who I’ve been vocally annoyed with for the past several novels. Keeping my angst toward Young Bull in mind, his character saw a total redemption in Tower of Midnight as we see him finally step into his role as a leader and stop making excuses for his past actions. Mat continues to be a bright spot in the series, with his sections in this book being some of my favorite of the series. I’m continually fascinated by the Snakes (Aelfinn)and Foxes (Eelfinn), namely their history in general, so it should be no surprise I’d been eagerly anticipating the plot arc surrounding Moiraine and it did not disappoint. Overall, Tower of Midnight did a fantastic job setting the stage for the final installment of the series, as it resolved many lingering plot holes, while beginning to move our beloved characters into position for the final battle. That being said Jordan/Sanderson left the reader with quite a few cliff hangers, leaving the reader eager to pick up the last book. Despite positively dreading the conclusion of this literary journey I’m excited to see what twists and turns the final novel will have in store.
Additional Insight (Spoilers Abound):
- Noal was actually Jain Farstrider! I positively hated that he died when very few significant characters have died within this series. And Mat had held the key to escape from the very beginning!
- I’ve long suspected the Perrin was in Tel’aran’rhiod when in the wolf dream. I did enjoy when he and Egwene ran into each other in this dream world while fighting their own battles that conveniently overlapped.
- Berelain and Galad as a couple was an amusing twist.
- Perrin and Faile as the series most annoying couple was quickly replaced in Towers of Midnight by Egwene and Gawyn. We waited so long for them to be reunited and Egwene was so rude to him over and over and over again.
- How did Mesaana get around the three oaths?
- Hopper’s death might be one of the most brutal of the series!
- Elayne is another frustrating character due to her lack of concern for her own well being, let alone for her babes! Her plan was clever to confront the Black Ajah, however totally reckless by keeping Birgitte out of the loop!
- It was pretty awesome how Perrin instinctively knew how to make the Power forged weapon. Might have been one of my favorite sequences of this novel.
- Is the gholam really destroyed? Perhaps it will be alive, like Moiraine? If Moiraine is alive will Lanfear also alive despite what the Eelfinn told her?
- I totally missed the attraction between Thom and Moiraine! Also, I’d thought I’d read a spoiler that Thom and Morgase ended up married so I was pleasantly surprised with this turn of events. I was so confused in this novel, based on my previously wrong spoiler, especially when Morgase married Tallanvor.
- Rand was exponentially more entertaining throughout Towers of Midnight!
- Where is Loial?
- Is the future Aviendha glimpsed set in stone or can the Aiel people be saved?
- Seriously, what in the world is happening at the Black Tower? Why has Rand been ignoring them?
- Why didn’t Mat just open Verin’s letter? Can Caemlyn be saved?