A number of years back I started reading the Wheel of Time series of books by Robert Jordan. I absolutely loved the first book, Eye of the World, and instantly became drawn into the world and the promise of the story to come.
My excitement for the series continued through books two and three, but started to wane a little by the time I reached the fourth book. The world itself, and the over-arching story was very intriguing, but the books started taking longer and longer to get to their point. It took an epic battle of endurance to power my way through the fifth book, The Fires of Heaven; a battle which, as it would turn out, paled in comparison to the one it took to get through the sixth book, Lord of Chaos – which many people consider to be one of the good ones.
I ended up taking a break halfway through that sixth book, putting it up on the shelf until returning to it over a year later to finally finish it. That’s where I am today. I look over towards my book shelf and I see books seven through eleven (with a twelfth – made up of three separate volumes no less – on the way) staring back at me and I wonder if it’s even worth it to continue.
I’ve been away from the series long enough at this point that while I remember the major plot, many of the details have been lost. I will never go back and re-read the first six books because, quite frankly, there isn’t enough money that you could possibly pay me to do so. If I ever return to the series I’ll just find some summaries online in order to get caught up, but it’ll still feel like something is missing. I’ve bought all the books, and I like the story enough to want to know what happens, but I’m not really sure if I want to continue. It doesn’t help to see people saying things in forums like, “books seven through ten are the worst in the series and are mind-numbingly boring”, I have to wonder a little if I really want to put myself through that. Book ten, Crossroads of Twilight, has been described as “an 800 page novel where literally nothing happens”.
A friend of mine described the problem I have with the series perfectly. He said that Robert Jordan would take twenty pages to describe two characters walking along a gravelly road, detailing every rock they stepped on, but the big huge epic battle at the end would be told in two sentences. Basically, the series has become an incredible grind to read for little payoff.
That’s where I’m at with EverQuest II. I’m trying to like it, and I really like the idea of being into it, but it’s been on the shelf for just a little too long, and working my way through the seven levels required to hit the cap is starting to look like one of Robert Jordan’s gravelly roads.