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The Shadow Rising (The Wheel of Time, Book 4) Hardcover – September 15, 1992

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Having declared himself the Dragon Reborn, Rand al'Thor must proceed to fulfill the prophecy that he will protect the world from the return of the Dark One. Jordan's hefty addition to his massive series begins very much in medias res as an unknown danger threatens the city of Tar Valon, home of the powerful, nunlike Aes Sedai. In a whirlwind of uncertainty stirred up by the conflicting motivations of such groups as the Whitecloaks, the Darkfriends and Trollocs (among an abundance of others), Rand travels to the city of Rhuidean in the Aiel Waste for answers. Jordan ( The Dragon Reborn ) seems to be intent on turning the series into an endless soap opera; in each successive volume he introduces more new elements than he resolves. What was originally a mood-setting technique--the tendency of most characters not to share their special knowledge with either their companions or the reader--has by now become boring. Hundreds of characters and dozens of conflicting plots cause much of the action to take place offstage. As a result, this fully imagined saga threatens to burst the seams of its steadily more intricate design. Nevertheless, the sheer force of his invention develops a momentum that established Jordan fans, and probably like-minded new readers, will find hard to resist.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

As the power of the Dark One grows stronger, Rand al'Thor and his friends face greater challenges in their war against the Shadow. From the halls of Tar Valon, where the Aes Sedai mystics discover agents of darkness in their own ranks, to the Aiel Waste, where a hidden city holds secrets forbidden to all but a few, Rand and his companions seek to fulfill the destiny laid out for them. Jordan's multivolume epic continues to live up to its high ambitions. Complex plotting, an array of strong characters, lavish detail, and a panoramic scope make this series a feast for fantasy aficionados. Expect demand for this.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Series: Wheel of Time (Book 4)
  • Hardcover: 704 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; 1st edition (September 15, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312854315
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312854317
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 2.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (665 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #99,007 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Robert Jordan was born in 1948 in Charleston, South Carolina. He taught himself to read when he was four with the incidental aid of a twelve-years-older brother and was tackling Mark Twain and Jules Verne by five. He is a graduate of The Citadel, the Military College of South Carolina, with a degree in physics. He served two tours in Vietnam with the U.S. Army; among his decorations are the Distinguished Flying Cross with bronze oak leaf cluster, the Bronze Star with "V" and bronze oak leaf cluster, and two Vietnamese Gallantry Crosses with palm. A history buff, he has also written dance and theater criticism and enjoyed the outdoor sports of hunting, fishing, and sailing, and the indoor sports of poker, chess, pool, and pipe collecting.

Robert Jordan began writing in 1977 and went on to write The Wheel of Time(R), one of the most important and best selling series in the history of fantasy publishing with over 14 million copies sold in North America, and countless more sold abroad.

Robert Jordan died on September 16, 2007, after a courageous battle with the rare blood disease amyloidosis.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Ritesh Laud on July 24, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I read this book twice a couple years ago. I loved it; it's my second-favorite of the series (after Lord of Chaos). This is a VITAL book in the series, it answers many questions about Rand's background and the Forsaken. In fact, for the first time in this series, a book manages to tie up more loose ends than it leaves!
There are a couple parallel threads in this novel (Rand/the Aiel, Nynaeve/Egwene, and Perrin/Faile). All threads are independently resolved nicely at the end with no major cliffhangers, although the protagonists remain in different parts of the world throughout the book and at the end. The Rand/Asmodean and Nynaeve/Moghedien conflicts in particular were very well written, with outstanding portrayal of these characters' distinct personalities coming alive in their struggles.
The Two Rivers part with Perrin/Faile vs. the Whitecloaks was in my opinion weak compared to the adventures elsewhere. However, this narrative takes up so much of the book that it's impossible to ignore, and interesting questions are brought up (i.e. Who is Slayer? What is the significance of the Manetheren heritage in the Emond's Fielders?).
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35 of 39 people found the following review helpful By John Ringo on March 4, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Wow. Action, adventure, romance, mystery, humor - this book (and the entire series) has it all. I can't even begin to describe it. I love these books so much, when I'm not reading one I go through a sort of depression, in which the world around me seems drab and dull...until I pick up the next Wheel of Time book. Jordan describes everything so well, making the land rich in detail AND history/lore. You can picture the great White Tower of Tar Valon, and this image also brings to mind the history and current affairs of the's just amazing. I've heard that Robert Jordan made ten pages of notes for each country in the Wheel of Time...and it shows! All the history is very consistent, and believable. But, don't get the idea that it bogs the books down - it's just the opposite. It makes the land much more believable and enjoyable.
You really care about the characters. Each one treats the situations he/she gets in differently - Jordan doesn't go by stereotypes, he actually creates "real" people, that are very easy to believe in and identify with. There is a large cast of characters, and each one basically has different adventures that appeal to different people. This makes the books rather complex - the Shadow Rising is the first book where all the seperate threads didn't come together at the end. But this just makes the books more interesting. For example: Some people thought Rand's adventures in the Aiel waste were the best scenes in the book. I didn't like them at all, and would have found them pretty boring if Moiraine hadn't been there. (Moiraine's my favorite character.) Instead, I was hooked on Elayne and Nynaeve's quest in Tanchico.
There are three main plotlines in this book, with a fourth (Min and the White Tower) popping up occasionally...
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By David Rasquinha on April 5, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Wheel of Time turns and brings Volume 4 of the saga, TheShadow Rising (TSR). For my money, TSR (perhaps along with Volume 5)form the peak of the series, before it meanders and loses itself. In TSR Rand edges ever closer to his destiny and we start to understand the Aiel, that fascinating people based on Frank Herbert's Fremen of Arrakis. We learn a bit more about Min (my favorite character of all!). Perrin too comes fully into his own in TSR as the attack on the Two Rivers reaches a crescendo. The White Tower is shaken with dissension. The Atha'an Miere or the Sea Folk also make their appearance and one can sense how the Dragon is slowly but surely gathering all his people for the final campaign. But the highpoint of the book is the Rhuidean experience where the history not just of the Aiel but the world of the WOT series is recapitulated as series of time capsules. At long last, many of the threads spun by Jordan... start to make some sense. The ingenious manner of the unveiling of these threads is almost enough to make one forgive Jordan for the absence of a decent prologue to the series. A book not to be missed; even if you are one of those tired with long plotlines, keep at it and I promise you will not be disappointed. But still only 4 stars for my now patented complains about Jordan's cartography and the excuse for a glossary of characters and concepts. END
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40 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Ash1138 on April 23, 2003
Format: Hardcover
The fourth installment of the neverending Wheel of Time sees our hero Rand traveling to the Aiel Waste to fulfill another prophecy. Rand isn't only the Dragon Reborn, he's appearantly He Who Comes With the Dawn as well.
The premis of this book was a lot more interesting to me than book 3. I mean, finally Rand get's some limelight and half the book's not about three girls at school? A lot of interesting background about the Aiel is revealed in this book as well as where Rand's own history fits into all this. You'll be surprised at some things.
Unfortunately, by this point, Jordan is now Juggling over a dozen characters over four separate story threads. Let's count them. In the first thread we have Rand, Egwene, Moiraine, Lan, and Mat. In the second thread we have Perrin, Faile, and Loial, In the third we have Elayne, Nynaeve, Thom, and Juilin. In the fourth thread we have Min, Siuane, and Leane. That's not to count all the other supporting characters that readers of Jordan know could have their own threads at any time.
In some ways this is both good and bad for the story. For those that enjoy the long drawn out soap operah, it's great. There's plenty to get sucked into. For those anxious for the plot to reveal itself however, it's sometimes agonizing. This book had a lot going for it. The subject matter was more interesting than in the previous books, but unfortunately, Jordan doesn't give you enough of it and worse, he doesn't stick to it. Everytime the book jumps to the characters and the storyline happening in Tanchico you're tempted to skip the chapter.
Present, again, is Jordan's use of "convenient" storytelling. This time however, it's not Rand who's miraculously able to save the with much overdone powers-he-never-knew-he-had.
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The Shadow Rising (The Wheel of Time, Book 4)
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