The Eye of the World

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The Eye of the World
Original cover of The Eye of the World
Original cover of The Eye of the World, prominently featuring Moiraine and Lan
Author Robert Jordan
Cover artist Darrell K. Sweet
Country United States
Language English
Series The Wheel of Time
Genre High Fantasy
Publisher Tor Books (U.S.) and
Orbit (UK)
Publication date
January 15, 1990
Media type Print (Hardback & Paperback)
Pages 688 pp (U.S. hardback edition) &
685 pp (UK hardback edition)
ISBN ISBN 0-312-85009-3 (US hardback edition)
& ISBN 1-85723-353-0 (UK hardback edition)
OCLC 19723327
Dewey Decimal 813/.54 20
LC Class PS3560.O7617 E94 1990
Preceded by New Spring
Followed by The Great Hunt

The Eye of the World (abbreviated as tEotW or EotW by fans) is the first book of The Wheel of Time (WoT) fantasy series written by American author Robert Jordan. It was published by Tor Books and released on January 15, 1990. The unabridged audio book is read by Michael Kramer and Kate Reading. Upon first publication, The Eye of the World consisted of one prologue and 53 chapters, with an additional prologue authored upon re-release.

On January 2, 2002, The Eye of the World was re-released as two separate books aimed at a young adult literature market, with larger text and a handful of illustrations. These were From the Two Rivers and To the Blight. The former included an additional prologue entitled "Ravens", focusing on Egwene al'Vere. The American Library Association put The Eye of the World on its 2003 list of Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults.[1]

Plot summary[edit]

The Eye of the World revolves around the lives of a group of young people from Emond's Field in The Two Rivers district: Rand al'Thor, Matrim (Mat) Cauthon, Perrin Aybara, Egwene al'Vere, and Nynaeve al'Meara.

Emond's Field is unexpectedly attacked by Dark forces—bestial Trollocs and a Myrddraal who seem to specifically target Rand, Mat and Perrin. Hoping to save their village from further attacks, the young men and Egwene flee the village accompanied by an Aes Sedai named Moiraine Damodred, her Warder Al'Lan Mandragoran and a gleeman Thom Merrilin. They are later joined by Nynaeve al'Meara, the Wisdom of Emond's Field.

Pursued by ever-increasing numbers of Trollocs and Myrddraal, the travellers are forced to take refuge in the abandoned city of Shadar Logoth, a place even the dark forces are reluctant to enter because of the evil Mashadar that resides there. While escaping the city the travelers are separated.

Rand, Mat and Thom make their way by boat to Whitebridge where Thom is apparently killed while allowing Rand and Mat to escape a Myrddraal. In Caemlyn Rand befriends an Ogier named Loial. While exploring the city and trying to catch a glimpse of the recently captured False Dragon, Rand falls into the palace gardens. Once there he meets Elayne Trakand, heir apparent to the throne of Andor and her brothers Gawyn Trakand and Galad Damodred. Rand is taken before Queen Morgase and her Aes Sedai advisor, Elaida who foretells that Rand is dangerous. Queen Morgase, however, decides to let Rand go free.

Meanwhile Egwene and Perrin travel separately to Caemlyn in the company of Elyas Machera, a man who can communicate with wolves and who claims that Perrin can do the same. The three run afoul of a legion of the Children of the Light. Perrin kills two Whitecloaks after witnessing the death of a wolf at their hands and is sentenced to death. Moiraine, Lan and Nynaeve rescue Egwene and Perrin from the Whitecloaks in time to escape their fate. Together they travel to Caemlyn where they are reunited with Rand and Mat. Rand tells Moiraine that Mat has been suspicious and withdrawn, and Moiraine diagnoses Mat's "sickness" as the corrupting influence of a ruby dagger Mat took from Shadar Logoth. Moiraine says that Mat must travel to Tar Valon in order to be healed.

Loial warns Moiraine of a threat to the Eye of the World, which is confirmed by vivid and disturbing dreams Mat, Rand and Perrin have had. The Eye of the World was created by Aes Sedai who sacrificed themselves to create a pool of Saidin untouched by the Dark One's taint, and is hidden in the Blight. The Eye of the World is protected by Someshta (the Green Man) and contains one of the seven seals on the Dark One's prison, the Dragon banner of Lews Therin Telamon and the Horn of Valere.

Loial guides the group through the Ways (passageways built by the male Aes Sedai during the Breaking of the World, which are now tainted by the same evil that tainted Saidin) in order to reach the Eye of the World. The group enters the Blight, in search of the Eye of the World guided by The Green Man. The Eye is revealed to be a pool of Saidin, pure and untainted. The companions are confronted by the Forsaken Aginor and Balthamel. Balthamel dies at the hand of the Green Man and Aginor and Rand battle for control of the Eye of the World. Rand defeats Aginor and guided by blind luck uses the pure Saidin to decimate the Trolloc army and defeat Ba'alzamon.

Afterwards Rand realizes to his own horror that he has channeled the One Power and is therefore condemned to a fate of insanity and horrific death. It is revealed that Moiraine believes Rand is the Dragon Reborn.

Themes and allusions[edit]

Robert Jordan has stated that he consciously intended the early chapters of The Eye of the World to evoke the Shire of Middle-earth in J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings.[2]

Release details[edit]

First Printing[edit]

Reprinting[edit]

Divided Printing[edit]

In January of 2002, Starscape Books released The Eye of the World into two halves, part one being titled "From the Two Rivers" (ISBN 0-7653-4184-0) and part two titled "To the Blight." (ISBN 0-7653-4221-9) ATOM, a British publishing house, printed these halves (ISBN 1-904233-20-1 and ISBN 1-904233-19-8) the following March.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "2003 Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults". American Library Association. Retrieved 10 October 2009. 
  2. ^ An Interview with Robert Jordan (from Crossroads of Twilight Prologue). Tor Books. 2002. p. 134. ISBN 0-7432-4493-1. 

External links[edit]