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Rating: Not Rated

At Long Last, an Ending

Talraen's Review of A Memory of Light (Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson) (Books)

There is one question in everyone's mind with regards to the final book of the Wheel of Time: was it worth it? That's a difficult question to answer generally, but for me it is a resounding yes. However, it isn't the yes I was expecting. In a series featuring so much prophecy fulfillment, it has long been my mantra that I "just want to know what happens." In the end, though, what happens is mostly predictable and often anticlimactic. The value in this book comes from the fates of the characters, and I'm not going to lie - it got pretty emotional for me.

First, the criticisms. A lot of AMoL felt like the last scene from Towers of Midnight: things we knew had to happen happened, and happened pretty much like we'd expect. Many theories proved correct, including the lackluster ones. There are significant exceptions, but strictly in terms of events, AMoL is a disappointment.

Fortunately, the characters and battles make AMoL shine. When they said the book would be mostly battles, they were not kidding. I had been worried about this, especially since Brandon Sanderson is not nearly as knowledgeable in war as Robert Jordan was, but the truth is that the battles were all very character-driven, as they had always been in the series. And seeing as how this is the last battle, no punches were pulled. This was for all the marbles, and was much harder to predict than the prophesized events.

Without spoiling the story, there isn't much more to say. Was the final ending worth it? The end itself was good, but not unexpected. The journey to get there was absolutely worth it, though. You need to care about the characters to appreciate AMoL, but I think that appreciation was earned, and it was certainly paid off.

Score: A

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