The Great Hunt

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The Great Hunt
WoT02 TheGreatHunt.jpg
Original cover of The Great Hunt, showing Rand al'Thor holding the Horn of Valere in front of Selene and Loial
Author Robert Jordan
Cover artist Darrell K. Sweet
Country United States
Language English
Series The Wheel of Time
Genre Fantasy novel
Publisher Tor Books (NA) and Orbit Books (UK)
Publication date
November 15, 1990
Media type Print (Hardback and Paperback)
Pages 600 pp (U.S. hardback edition)
ISBN ISBN 0-312-85140-5 (US hardback edition)
OCLC 21902708
813/.54 20
LC Class PS3560.O7617 G74 1990
Preceded by The Eye of the World
Followed by The Dragon Reborn

The Great Hunt (abbreviated as tGH by fans) is the second book of The Wheel of Time fantasy series written by American author Robert Jordan. It was published by Tor Books and released on November 15, 1990. The Great Hunt consists of a prologue and 50 chapters. In 2004 The Great Hunt was re-released as two separate books, The Hunt Begins and New Threads in the Pattern.

The story features young heroes Rand al'Thor, Mat Cauthon, and Perrin Aybara, who join Shienaren soldiers in a quest to retrieve the Horn of Valere. At the same time, Egwene al'Vere, Nynaeve al'Meara, and Elayne Trakand go to the White Tower in Tar Valon to learn Aes Sedai ways. Finally, an exotic army invades the western coast.

Plot summary[edit]

Prologue[edit]

Ba'alzamon presides over a clandestine meeting. In addition to Forsaken and Darkfriends (the antagonist's known subordinates), the meeting includes two Aes Sedai, one later identified as Liandrin.

The Hunt Begins[edit]

Following the events in The Eye of the World, the protagonists are visited by the Amyrlin Seat, Siuan Sanche, who identifies Rand al'Thor as the Dragon Reborn. Mat's condition worsens through his psychic attachment to a parasitic dagger. Lan Mandragoran instructs Rand in swordfighting. Darkfriend Padan Fain is imprisoned; but the free him and stealing the Horn of Valere and the tainted dagger. Rand, Perrin Aybara, and Mat accompany a Shienaran party southbound in pursuit, under the leadership of Lord Ingtar and guided by the tracker 'Hurin'. Nynaeve al'Meara and Egwene al'Vere accompany Moraine to Tar Valon for Aes Sedai training, where they befriend Elayne Trakand and the clairvoyant 'Min'. There, Nynaeve passes the test to become Accepted, a rank in the White Tower below Aes Sedai and above a Novice.

Cover of The Hunt Begins

Rand, Loial, and Hurin are separated from the Shienaran party and transported to an alternate world; similar to their own, but deserted and distorted. Rand suspects that he activated the portal stone by unconsciously channeling saidin in his sleep, although Egwene dreams that a mysterious woman (later identified as 'Lanfear') is responsible. Rand's struggle to accept his channeling ability is a recurring element in the novel. In this alternate world, Rand meets Ba'alzamon and has a heron's image (the crest of his sword) branded into his palm in a fight. Later, with the help of Selene (Lanfear in disguise), they return to their own world, ahead of Fain's and Ingtar's groups. This done, they recover Horn and dagger. At a loss to explain Rand's disappearance, Lord Ingtar's group pursue Padan Fain with the aid of Perrin, who uses a telepathic ability to communicate with wolves.

Rand's party journeys to Cairhien, where Rand finds gleeman Thom Merrilin, whom he thought dead in The Eye of the World. Rand and Loial are attacked by Trollocs (the Dark One's bestial foot-soldiers) and, during their escape, destroy the Chapter House of the Illuminator's Guild, a society retaining knowledge of fireworks. The Horn and dagger are again lost. Later, Thom's apprentice Dena is murdered for Thom's involvement with Rand.

To Toman Head[edit]

With the aid of Perrin, Ingtar's group is reunited with Rand, and they learn that the Horn has been taken to Toman Head, at the port city of Falme. To gain time, Rand tries to lead them through an alternate world; but instead loses time. Meanwhile the invading Seanchan and their exotic beasts have occupied Falme. Geofram Bornhald, leader of the zealous religious group Children of the Light, is preparing to attack the Seanchan. At the White Tower, Liandrin lures Egwene and Nynaeve, along with Elayne and Min, to Toman Head, where Min is captured by the Seanchan and Egwene is collared with an a'dam: a device used by the Seanchan to control channelers. Nynaeve and Elayne escape.

At Falme, Rand slays High Lord Turak of the Seanchan before escaping with the Horn and dagger. Ingtar reveals himself as a Darkfriend, but redeems himself when he dies fighting for Rand's group. Elayne and Nynaeve rescue Egwene from the Seanchan and attempt to flee the city. At this moment the Whitecloaks also attack, leaving the heroes trapped between the Seanchan and the Whitecloaks; whereupon Mat blows the Horn of Valere, resurrecting dead heroes including Artur Hawkwing, which overcome the Seanchan and vanish. Rand himself vanquishes Ba'alzamon, but is himself wounded, and in doing so projects an image of their duel to numerous peoples.

External links[edit]