…the first page of the last book in the Wheel of Time series and then I put it down. I can’t read this book yet. First, there is a part of me that doesn’t want the series to end. This is the series that started it all, for me. I know it should have been Lord of the Rings, but it wasn’t. It was the Wheel of Time series with its 14 books of forgotten magic, epic battles, and glorious prophecy. I had read some of what my mom considered child appropriate Fantasy as a pre-teen. But when I went to college and found Wheel of Time, I was really hooked. How can it be over already?
I also struggle with reading this book because it has been so long since I read the last book in the series, and I cannot remember what the hell is going on. The series is truly epic with hundreds of critical characters and places. Why struggle through the last book, trying to remember where I left off, when I can just re-read the last book? Full disclosure, before the 13th book came out I re-read the entire series, which is fairly ridiculous. I am not usually one to re-read books. I even re-read the late volumes which, most fans agree, lull and lag a bit. Better to re-read the last book and thus be totally immersed in the subsequent volume.
One more note about Wheel of Time. It’s the only series I currently read that is not released in ebook format right away. If one wants to read the book when it’s released, one has to buy the hard cover version. Though I expected to be annoyed at this large, paper inconvenience, I wasn’t. In fact, the paper book actually helped transport me back to those days when magic was even more magical and my paper book collection was a source of pride. This will probably be the last Fantasy novel I read in this format. It’s sad to say goodbye to Rand and also to books as I used to know them.