The Wheel of Time - worth reading the series?

Not only no, but *hell *no, the first book is mediocre to bad, and the next is worse, didn’t bother after that.

You are basically over the hump now, the rest will be highly enjoyable.

I don’t want to get into to many specifics since the OP has NOT read the series. I’m not a hater of the series, Jordan pissed me off with his money-grubbing, certainly, but there is a LOT of good ideas in the series and LOT of bad ones and poor execution. And I will never be convinced that he didn’t change a particular plot point just to spite the readers. I think he caught lighting in the first few books and just didn’t have the chops to finish the story.

I loved Ingtar and his storyline, damned well done IMO.

I voted yes, because if nothing else, the world/magic of the Wheel of Time is an interesting one, albeit too poorly employed in the middle novels in favor of needless bloat…and tugged braids.

One thing to keep in mind is that Jordan deliberately made the first book comfortable and familiar to fantasy fans to get them interested before going off into different directions. So it starts off with a farm boy discovering he’s not who he thought he is and a mysterious magical stranger taking him off on an adventure while being chased by scary semi-human monsters, which all sounds very stereotypical. But after book one, it gets more creative.

I voted “No” - it’s just not that well-written, overlong and tiredly retreads tropes that any well-read fantasy fan should already have been bored with. IMO, of course.

Not in my opinion.

I voted “Yes”. To me, it started strong, and finished strong. Jordan himself seemed to get it together in the last volume he wrote alone. And Sanderson kicked it up a notch.

Of course, reading the damn thing over 2 decades and change means you got to spend years NOT reading it, too. I’m not sure I’d want to burn thru the damn series in one continuous read.

Because those middle books sucked. Volumes 7-10 passed like kidney stones.

Yes, it’s worth reading, but I agree with the plan of skipping a few books and reading the summaries.

So I would read books 1-5, which I think are solidly and consistently excellent.

Book 6 is where the slide begins, but it has enough good stuff that I’d read it also.

Then read summaries only for books 7-10. Then come back for book 11 (the last one that Robert Jordan wrote), and then read the three by Sanderson.

I voted No, and for the same reasons.

You only have to read 4 or 5 bad 1,000 page books to get to the end. What an endorsement!

That’s fantastic news. I don’t expect it to end as good as it began, but as long as it doesn’t get worse, I’m ok with that. Gotta find a new author to go through all the back catalog when I’m done…

I read the first book. Ok, interested to see what happens next. I read the second book- nothing from the first book gets resolved, and a ton more stuff is added which would be sagas in of themselves. I start the third book- another so-important-the-fate-of-the-world-hangs-in-the-balance plotline, and they still haven’t addressed the two or three already running. At which point I gave up.

I read one book and thought it looked like a second-rate Tolkien ripoff. I didn’t read any others.

Some better doorstopper fantasy writers: Jack Vance, Robin Hobb, Tad Williams, George R R Martin, Lois McMaster Bujold.

I think it does end as good as it began.

Agreed with this. Book 11 is actually really good, and makes me kind of curious to see how the last three would have been if they were 100% Jordan. The Sanderson books worked out well, though.

Book 10 is easily the most disappointed I’ve ever been in a book release. Book 9 ends with something that should be Paradigm Shifting and have Really Cool Repercussions (kept generic because every fantasy series book ever ends like that!)… and then Book 10 shifts in time and completely blows it off. And it also sucks on its own as a novel.

Definitely worth reading if you’re into long fantasy series, though.

This. Only I read a couple more and they only get worse.

I like for things to happen in my books. Jordan seemed to be good at characters and worldbuilding, but only fair at storytelling and absolutely horrid at pacing. Thumbs down for me unless you’ve already read all the good fantasy there is and can’t consider yourself a fantasy fan until you’ve gotten through Wheel of Time. It’s kinda like Thomas Covenant in that way, if you’re a fantasy fan you pretty much have to read it eventually. Although the Covenant series rewards the patient more than Wheel of Time does, IMO.

The prologues are gripping. I remember one where the girls were taking part in a rite of passage ritual that involved them telling each other what they loved and hated most about each other, and it was very intense. Then after that, it was 600+ pages of minor characters and what they were wearing. The action finally started about 50 pages from the end. I stopped caring after book 7 and haven’t even read the summaries.

I’d say go ahead and read it. If you find particular books not worth the effort, head on over to www.tor.com/features/series/wot-reread , and read the synopsis of the books.
Generally I agree, the middle books are rather unnecessary and drawn out, but I still enjoy the series.

Needless to say, many people believe that the series contains 7 or 8 FANTASTIC 1,000-page books, along with 4 or 5 bad 1,000 page books. YMMV.