Book Review: New Spring (Wheel of Time Book "0")

Book:  New Spring (Wheel of Time Book 0)
Author:  Robert Jordan
Pages:  337
Format:  Hardcover, paperback, Kindle/ebook
Publisher:  Tor Fantasy (July 2011)
Book Source:  Independent Purchase
Category:  Fantasy
Style:  Page-turner

One of the shortest books in Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series, New Spring differs in several ways. First, it is a prequel, beginning some eighteen years prior to The Eye of the World, and rather than the three youths, Rand, Mat, and Perrin, focuses on the Aes Sedai, Moiraine, her best friend, Siuan, and her warder, Lan Mandragoran. It also is much faster in pace, with less attention to the details of setting, countries, and customs and more to the characters and the plot development. Written after ten previous volumes, Mr. Jordan seems to assume his readers are already comfortable in (if not natives of) the Wheel of Time world, which approach lends greatly to the enjoyment of this book. Two or three of his other late-in-the-series books could have benefited from this same approach.

In this book, two of our favorite supporting characters, Moiraine Damodred and Siuan Sanche are young Accepted at the White Tower when they witness a Foretelling prophesying of the birth of the Dragon Reborn. In the meantime, Lan Mandragon is outside the walls of Tar Valon fighting the last skirmishes of the Aiel War. Over the course of the book,the two friends begin their perilous quest to find the new babe who will one day hopefully save the world, and sweep up Lan into it as together they battle against the dreaded Black Ajah.

I enjoyed this book and finished it quickly. Mr. Jordan initially intended to make this a three-volume series, but his untimely death prevented it, as it did his completion of the last volumes of The Wheel of Time. Brandon Sanderson has thus far done a marvelous job completing two of the three last volumes of the first series with the help of Mr. Jordan's extensive notes and writing. It is to be hoped that completing the youthful tale of Moiraine, Siuan and Lan is on his to-do list.

Final word: I own this book. It goes on my 'enjoy again' shelf.

FTC Disclaimer: This book was independently purchased. I received no compensation from the author or their agent for this content.

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