I don't understand how Crossroads of Twilight is one big book of nothing, when Winter's Heart and Path of Daggers were excruciatingly filler. It tops them for being the most pointless. I don't know how Jordan did it, but he did. In a way, it is a masterful ability to draw something out. Can you imagine him telling you a bedtime story? He would be sitting on that bed for six full days straight with or without you in it. It's just characters putzing around, drinking tea, and smoothing skirts.
The majority of the conversations in Wheel of Time seem incredibly long. A character states something about 10 words. The receiving character thinks for about 30 seconds, begins to say something, thinks again for another 10, and then responds. The initiating character by this point is already daydreaming and will be daydreaming for the next minute while straightening tea dollies and scowling about goat's milk. Then this repeats. I tried to look for any writing where it is simply back and forth dialogue...it doesn't exist. All conversations are lengthy, lengthy paragraphs. What makes it even worse is when tertiary and quaternary characters (come on, no way some of these characters have any purpose) keep saying the same thing over and over again, in different books.
Perrin's story is lame. I feel bad that his character has got such the short end of the stick in the way of excitement, but he barely does anything except whine about Faile, who is still imprisoned two books later. Since Perrin left Two Rivers after the Trollocs, he has been doing extremely little. I like Perrin, but it appears Jordan has no idea how to fit him into the storyline, other than having him wait around. I did like the chapter for So Habor, which was eerie, and fit the mood the whole book should be aiming for.
Elayne pregnant is the same as Elayne not pregnant. Her moods and reactions are exactly the same, except she has become super obsessed with tea. I wished I could reach into the book and smack her with a teapot. She is my least favorite character. I think Birgitte and Aviendha have become boring around Elayne. Birgitte in particular. And did anyone notice the amount of snorting these three did all the time? It was really bizarre because one of the them was always snorting in anger. This wasn't as commonplace in the other character's sections. This section was the worst in the book, nothing occurred here.
Egwene and the rebels are still in the same scenario as two books ago. They are waiting around and plotting, still. I found this section more interesting than Elayne because at least you could see some shift in the views of the Aes Sedai, so it wasn't as stagnant. However, they are in the camp the whole time.
Rand has about one chapter. He is hanging out with Min and Cadsuane. Min is starting to bore me. I wish she would go off on her own adventure. The few pages with Arymilla were so boring, I could barely make it through that part, even though it was tiny. Nynaeve makes no appearances in this book, so it kind of makes it better, in a way!
Mat is always interesting. His two parts are sandwiched in the beginning and end, so he doesn't get to break up the monotony of everyone else. He does have some forward progression, in terms of geography, when everyone else is stuck in one freaking spot, but he doesn't help the plot move along either. Mat is biding his time until he discovers what he wants to do. The relationship with Tuon is strange, but better than his previous sex-slave one. I didn't mind reading his sections, although they weren't as action-packed as his typically were.
Alviaran's chapter was the best in the book. The only part that kept me riveted. So I would suggest reading this one chapter. However, it's not that it was extremely amazing, but it was in stark contrast to the rest, because, gasp! Something has changed. I will be interested to see if she remains in the White Tower or goes elsewhere.
My Favorites, in order. I put the Goodreads average rating next to each in parentheses. Now looking back, I am surprised by how Lord of Chaos ranked so high on this list for me, based on my rating. I think I was so happy there was action near the end I forgave Jordan for all his wrongdoings. I shouldn't be so nice!
1. The Shadow Rising #4 (4.15)
2. The Great Hunt #2 (4.14)
3. Lord of Chaos #6 (4.01)
4. Eye of the World #1 (4.13)
5. The Dragon Reborn #3 (4.17)
6. Fires of Heaven #5 (4.04)
7. Crown of Swords #7 (3.90)
8. Winter’s Heart #9 (3.82)
9. Path of Daggers #8 (3.82)
10. Crossroads of Twilight # 10 (3.77)