Originally Posted by landho
I read the first eight or nine books of the Wheel of Time and then I said enough was enough. The series really began to drag, and my friend who continued to plug away at it said the same. The first five books, though, gripped me like no other books had, but it's been maybe a dozen years since I read them. So I can't accurately say how they compare with some of the best fiction I've read in recent years. But they are huge and fun and read quickly, so that should be enough.
Recently, I had a case of both nostalgia and the desire to study genre more deeply, so I went and picked up a bunch of books I read years ago from used-book stores and read them some of them. They held up pretty well. While I am a more discerning reader right now, I'm also more broad-minded (I think) and better able to take books, movies, and music "for what they are"; that is to say, I don't think Robert Jordan was trying to channel Proust when he was writing the Wheel of Time. So if my response to the books is any indication, I'm sure the Wheel of Time will hold up very well. He is very good at creating suspense and wonder.
Like others, I really enjoyed this series initially. Jordan creates an extremely detailed world; sometimes too detailed. However, they really do drag on with pretty much the same formula in every book. Nothing for the first 550 pages culminating in a big event/battle.
I also dislike the "boys against the girls" attitude in the books. It's very juvenile IMO.
I still read the series because I want to know how it ends. The last book was really quite fast-paced and advanced the plot quite a bit. However, as another posted said, Jordan died and while he left enough notes to finish the story (in addition to telling it), it's not going to be the same as it's his world
and I don't think anyone is going to be able to capture his vision. The plot is also a convoluted mess at this point. There are too many loose ends for me to envision a satisfactory resolution.