Last post about this series for a while, I promise. I'm here to talk about my impressions for the series and why it's my favorite series.
First, the world is real. No, I don't mean that he took our world and used it. He invented his own. But it feels just as real as ours, and more real than most books set in our world. He has obviously world built this world for years, and has plotted an extensive history for it. Not only that, but there are a large number of cultures, but you can immediately tell which one a character is from, because they are so well defined.
Not only are the cultures well defined, they are varied and sensible. Things fit in each culture, and you can see how the cultures all fit with each other, and fit in with the world. It's amazingly well crafted.
His characters are amazing. Every single one has a unique background. You can tell what culture they are from, but you can also almost immediately tell what makes them different from the rest of their culture as well; what makes them interesting.
Not only are the unique, they are engaging. Every single one wants something different from the world, and they are all actively pursuing it. Active characters are more interesting than inactive ones, and Jordan's characters are some of the most active lot I've ever read.
And this is no mean feat with, say, two characters. Jordan has at least 20, and many more minor characters that are still interesting and intriguing.
Now, this does NOT mean that he spends time showing you all kinds of boring stuff. His books read slow the first time, with months in between them. Now that I'm re-reading them, and going from one to the next to the next, they're very fast. His pacing is good, and there's always so many things moving towards resolution that I don't feel any of it is boring.
His foreshadowing is almost eerie, as I'm re-reading, I'm seeing things set up that happen in books 12 and 13, which were written by another author, more than 20 years later. And yet he knew they would happen, and set them up. This has made some of the later books incredibly rewarding, and promises to make the last one very satisfying.
I also LOVE the epic scope of the series. Almost everything else now feels short and unsatisfying, like there's so much that could have been explored that wasn't due to space constraints. Major kudos to Jordan for writing it the length it needed to be. (He originally pitched it as a three book series. LOL!)