art by Darrell K. Sweet

Theoryland Resources

WoT Interview Search

Search the most comprehensive database of interviews and book signings from Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson and the rest of Team Jordan.

Wheel of Time News

An Hour With Harriet

2012-04-30: I had the great pleasure of speaking with Harriet McDougal Rigney about her life. She's an amazing talent and person and it will take you less than an hour to agree.

The Bell Tolls

2012-04-24: Some thoughts I had during JordanCon4 and the upcoming conclusion of "The Wheel of Time."

Theoryland Community

Members: 7611

Logged In (0):

Newest Members:johnroserking, petermorris, johnadanbvv, AndrewHB, jofwu, Salemcat1, Dhakatimesnews, amazingz, Sasooner, Hasib123,

Theoryland Tweets

Theories

Home | Index | Archives | Help

ook 11- Knife of Dreams

by Great Lord of the Dark: 2004-04-15 | 5.78 out of 10 (18 votes)

Previous Categories: Knife of Dreams (Title of Book 11)

Well, it seems that the title Knife of dreams is not some April Fool's joke, so I'll spell out what I think it means.

We know that dead heroes linked to the Horn reside in T'A'R until they are reborn. We also know Egwene has seen that the dreams of every person, perhaps the dreams of every person who ever was, in the gap between T'A'R and the waking world. And we also know that the Aelfinn and Eelfinn reside in a dimension somehow related to T'A'R, and they have enabled Mat to make use of memories of dead men, specifically of their moment of death. And finally we have seen that both the Amayar and Aiel have sayings/beliefs indicating that "life is but a dream from which we wake" (tSR) and the time of Illusions (dreams) is at an end. The last fact is that dead people have started showing up as ghosts in CoT.

All of this points to two things in my twisted mind: Dead people are 'stored' in an area related to T'A'R until their rebirth, and, The barrier between that area and the waking world has begun weakening.

The Title 'Knife of Dreams' refers to the final cutting through of that barrier. The dream world will no longer be separate from the waking world, and many many many more ghosts and undead creepy-crawlies will surface in the next book.

Now is that cutting through due to the pattern or the Dark One? Well, I ask you, will it increase chaos? Yeppers! The Dark One's efforts have been doing what since making endless summer four books ago? They've been tearing down the wall separating the living from the dead. While everyone is fending off ghosts and such, his Trolloc hordes will march across the World virtually unopposed.

What this means to anyone who dies during this time is a good question, but I'll wager Rand living and dying again is dependent on this taking place.
You cannot rate theories without first logging in. Please log in.

Comments

1

Tamyrlin: 2004-06-13

Well, I for one would love a book that devotes time to additional adventuring within the dimensions of the Unseen World. If all of you "Mat and/or Thom will go to finnland to rescue Moiraine" are right (and I so hope you are not), then maybe we will see increased activity in other dimensions of the Unseen World. But, I like your emphasis on the breakdown of the walls between the dimension of the Seen and the Unseen. It only makes sense, if the DO is trying to destroy the Pattern, that the worlds contained within the Pattern or that surround it, are beginning to fray. I also like the idea that the souls of the dead are in a separate dimension of the Unseen World (however, you know I don't accept the DO having access to them...), but I am open to the DO getting access to them, if he is able to get free of his prison. However, how do you explain the limited "seeings" of ghosts by a few individuals in the books. Shouldn't everyone be able to see the "dead" walking?

2

danger: 2004-06-13

Perhaps a stupid thougt but could Mat's Dagger have something to do with the title? I think it has some part to play still

3

charliec: 2004-06-13

Following the pattern of previous titles, I would say that 'Knife of Dreams' is either likely to describe some aspect of the plot (eg Path of Daggers, Crossroad of Twilight) or to refer to some actual thing that the main characters come across (eg. Eye of the World, Crown of Swords).

I don't see quite how the first might work, so my guess is that there is actually some kind of object called the Knife of Dreams... in which case I think the main characters will find it and use it to do some good... possibly to avert the type of scenario you suggest...

4

mako0424: 2004-06-13

i think the Knife of Dreams is going to be some hugely important angreal of ter'angreal, and i think both the ghosts and T'A'R' are all gonna be tied in. I also think this next book is where Thom will save Moiraine, i dont know why your slightly dubious Tamyrlin, there has been both a Foretelling of Thom pulling a blue jewel out of fire. I think Moiraine, like Lanfear/Cyndane, isnt dead, or not fully dead. She will be saved and ride into battle with Rand, she will also complete Cadsuane's plan to save Rand and teach him and other Asha'man about tears and laughter. Becoz she has taken a martyr position to Rand now, and Rand beat himself up over her death and sdaid he should have listened to her when he could of, Her sudden reappearnace will create a much more flexible and well-listening Rand. of course she will once again be instrumental to Tarmon Gaidon.

5

Vercisisolde: 2004-06-13

It would be nice to know if anyone has ideas concerning Tamyrlin's question. I, for one, find it odd that in CoT, Mat sees a whole bunch of ghosts all around, but Tuon and Selucia don't notice them. Why would this be?

6

Brendan Reborn: 2004-06-13

I think the title "Knife of Dreams" actually refers to events that willtke place during the dreams. We see continual action in T'A'R with Rand, Slayer, Perrin, Egwene, Forsaken, and plenty more. Combine that with the Finn's, Moiraine's rescue, and Forkroot, and theres a book. I consider a knife, a weapon that is concealable, so that maybe you could stab someone in the back? Maybe someone is betraying someone in T'A'R, or while they are asleep.

7

Cadeyrn Wyn: 2004-06-14

i have a semi-idea about why Mat was the only one able to see them Vercisisolde. It might have something to do with him being Ta'veren. Didnt Perrin also see some ghosts at one stage?

8

a dragonburned fool: 2004-06-14

I like the idea that dreams are what have to be allowed into the waked world. I don't think that the dead people's souls are what comes here: the ghosts we have seen seem to be too much related with some kind of nightmares the living people have (they are allways people who make the living ones scare), where Mat's neutral ghosts seem to be the only exception. Bubbles of Evil seem always like the nightmares that occur in TAR.

9

Mairashda: 2004-06-14

(praying) please, please, please don't let "knife of dreams" be a reference to an artifact. this sounds too much like your standard quest in your standard RPG...

but there is a sharp edge to being in TAR (and of course other related dimensions). dreams can be hurt you there- if that isn't enough of a knife, then what is?

10

New Forsaken: 2004-06-14

I think that the Knife of dreams refers to something that Elayne found with the Bowl of winds. Remember something said that along with the Bowl would be an even greater treasure and their was a dull knife with a horn handle found. I am at work so I do not have the references but I am sure that someone could find them easily

11

Jes: 2004-06-15

I think of "knife" as a weapon and think the next book will show how dreams and the dreamworld can be used as a weapon both by and against "the good guys."

12

charliec: 2004-06-15

How does Slayer enter the dream? maybe he uses (or is) the Knife of Dreams...

Think about it, he can't channel, and hence would be of limited value at TG, and the good guys needs (from a plot point of view) to kill another major enemy off soon...

13

Great Lord of the Dark: 2004-06-15

Mat, Perrin, Seonid, Elayne's maid are among those who have seen ghosts so far. You could make a case that Power users and ta'veren are able to perceive them where others can't. But I maintain that eventually everyone will see them.

14

Daekyras: 2004-06-15

Sometimes Charlies, your thoughts mirror mine. The first time I heard knife of dreams, I thought of slayer and his special abilities. He hasn't done anything for a while and someone major/semi-major needs to die soon....

15

charliec: 2004-06-16

**Sometimes Charlies, your thoughts mirror mine**

Well, as they say- "Great minds think alike, but physicists seldom differ"

16

wattj69: 2004-06-17

ok, the one place where there is a HUGE concentration of the dead walking: So Habor. I'm pretty sure that Mr. Fain ties in to the the problems of that town, and where Padan Fain is, you can expect to see that lovely dagger of his. I think that the idea of the dead beginning to walk is possible, but it won't be due to the DO. it will be because of the returning power of SL, through Padan Fain and the good folk of So Habor. in this way, it's a new problem for Rand too deal with, and at the same time, isn't a clear advantage for the shadow, because I think that the dark has been doing pretty good lately, and any more without an advantage for the light will be a bit ridiculous. Sorry if this is a little disjointed, but it's just an idea I've been kicking around.

17

SugarBullet: 2004-06-17

I think we're all indulging in a little wishiful thinking in making a literal connection. As the books have gone on, they have become more and more, I guess, poetic (yes-with a few exceptions like crown of swords). True we started of with Eye of the World, but we currently riding the trend of Path of Daggers, Winters Heart, and Crossroads of Twilight. So, I think we're are probably safe wo assume that while there will be some loose connections to plot elements, Knife of Dreams is more evocative than substantial.

18

Callandor: 2004-06-17

**I'm pretty sure that Mr. Fain ties in to the the problems of that town, and where Padan Fain is, you can expect to see that lovely dagger of his.**

Why would Fain have anything to do with So Habor? Also, it's ghosts there, not corruption and paranoia running rampent.

19

wattj69: 2004-06-18

ok, u make good points about the differences between So Habor and SL, but corruption might be just the first step. what was Mashador really? maybe what's left of the individuals who lived in Aridhol? Might it be possible that the first step in becoming a place as twisted as SL (or the second or third step, I forget where we are) is something much like what's going on in So Habor. and there's another thing to consider. whatever is going on in that town, it's against the natural order of things by a large degree. The Dark One doesn't mind chaos, but none of his minions is capable of perpetuating it quite like Fain, who, quite frankly, we haven't heard from in too long.

20

Callandor: 2004-06-19

**what was Mashador really? maybe what's left of the individuals who lived in Aridhol? Might it be possible that the first step in becoming a place as twisted as SL (or the second or third step, I forget where we are) is something much like what's going on in So Habor. and there's another thing to consider. whatever is going on in that town, it's against the natural order of things by a large degree.**

Mashadar is a giant mindless fog created from the corruption of the dead city of Aridhol.

Also:

**RJ: Mashadar appeared after everybody in Aridhol had killed one another.

[ACOS book signing: Vancouver, 24 August, 1996; report by Lara Beaton]**

And more:

**TITLE: Eye of the World

CHAPTER: 19 - Shadow's Waiting

"The story is too long to tell in full, and too grim, and only fragments are known, even in Tar Valon. How Thorin's son, Caar, came to win Aridhol back to the Second Covenant, and Balwen sat his throne, a withered shell with the light of madness in his eyes, laughing while Mordeth smiled at his side and ordered, the deaths of Caar and the embassy as Friends of the Dark. How Prince Caar came to be called Caar One-Hand. How he escaped the dungeons of Aridhol and fled alone to the Borderlands with Mordeth's unnatural assassins at his heels. How there he met Rhea, who did not know who he was, and married her, and set the skein in the Pattern that led to his death at her hands, and hers by her own hand before his tomb, and the fall of Aleth-loriel. How the armies of Manetheren came to avenge Caar and found the gates of Aridhol torn down, no living thing inside the walls, but something worse than death. *No enemy had come to Aridhol but Aridhol. Suspicion and hate had given birth to something that fed on that which created it, something locked in the bedrock on which the city stood. Mashadar waits still, hungering.* Men spoke of Aridhol no more. They named it Shadar Logoth, the Place Where the Shadow waits, or more simply, Shadow's Waiting.**

Another thing: why would Fain go to So Habor? He is after Rand. Unless he totally ignores his ability to sense Rand, and ignores his desire to kill him, then he might go re-establish Shadar Logoth, if he could.

So Habor is definately not following nature, but that doesn't point to Fain.

21

wattj69: 2004-06-20

ok, you're probably right, and u make good points, so I withdraw some of what I had said, but I'm sorry, I can't help but think some of my theory here is still valid. Fain is basically all that's left of the essence of SL, maybe he can feel a pull to recreate it even stronger than his desire to kill Rand (I know, that would have to be one hell of a pull, but think about it) moreover, with SL destroyed, Fain's powers would start to wane, his character is too important for that, so I think RJ has gotta keep him powerful. and So Habor....well, there are two real big evils in the world: the shadow and SL. So Habor just doesn't feel right for the shadow. I am left with the feeling that Fain is at least partly responsible for the situation in So Habor. tear at this to your hearts content, I know it's a bit weak, but I can't think of anything else that could really cause So Habor, and Fain being responsible for such a mass corruption of the natural order would be just too beautiful, and too like RJ.

22

charliec: 2004-06-21

**with SL destroyed, Fain's powers would start to wane, his character is too important for that, so I think RJ has gotta keep him powerful.**

that's not certain... we don't know that Fain had any ties to Shadar Logoth, he certainly seems to have functioned well on his own so far. Certainly the dagger from SL didn't have any clear ties to it's origin.

I think that RJ's idea of the evil of SL is not that it's tied to Aridhol, but rather that any small bit of it has the ability to corrupt and do the same elsewhere if given the task.

I agree that Fain may try to create a new Aridhol (he was already underway in the White Tower, and in Amador) but it's not necessarily him at work in So Habor, and what happens there bares little resemblance to any Shadar Logoth phenomena we've seen so far.

23

timetorollthedice: 2004-06-21

Three Points

1- Ghosts are not the only problem in So Harbor. The Grain is full of weevils even in the middle of Winter, for example.

2- Perrin gets to So Harbor mere days after Rand destroyed SL. I don't think there is enough time for the corruption we see to have taken place.

3-Knife of Dreams...My thoughts are that the tower of Ghenjei might be roughly shaped like a knife...

24

wattj69: 2004-06-21

ok, that's a good point, I hadn't considered the time problem...damn, I guess I just want that to happen, it would be pretty interesting. but even if that's not it, I still think Fain will play a part sometime, his dagger being important. I just don't see the tower being shaped a certain way being the reason.

25

Callandor: 2004-06-22

** Fain is basically all that's left of the essence of SL, maybe he can feel a pull to recreate it even stronger than his desire to kill Rand (I know, that would have to be one hell of a pull, but think about it) moreover, with SL destroyed, Fain's powers would start to wane, his character is too important for that, so I think RJ has gotta keep him powerful.**

Where is this? Fain has been seperate from Shadar Logoth since he went there. The dagger has been seperated from Shadar Logoth, since the Eye of the World. Has either waned?

Also, has Rand's wounds waned since the destruction of Shadar Logoth? By your logic, it should, since Fain is apparently wanning. They haven't.

**and So Habor....well, there are two real big evils in the world: the shadow and SL. So Habor just doesn't feel right for the shadow. I am left with the feeling that Fain is at least partly responsible for the situation in So Habor. tear at this to your hearts content, I know it's a bit weak, but I can't think of anything else that could really cause So Habor, and Fain being responsible for such a mass corruption of the natural order would be just too beautiful, and too like RJ.**

We do not have enough information. That's it. It has nothing to do with Fain. He would've killed Perrin on the spot if he was there (he can sense Mat and Perrin to a small degree).

Also, nothing overrides Fain's desire to kill Rand. Absolutely nothing. Everything he has done, has either been a direct attack to Rand, or a plan to weaken him for Fain to attack him. Nothing else but killing Rand is on Fain's mind.

26

Mairashda: 2004-06-22

"3-Knife of Dreams...My thoughts are that the tower of Ghenjei might be roughly shaped like a knife... "

"It do be metal, (...) A tower of metal. I have seen it close up, and I know.(...) Shining steel, by the look and feel of it, but no a spot of rust. Two hundred feet high, it be, as big around as a house, with no a mark on it and never an opening to be found." (EotW,Ch.24,p356)

"Two hundred feet the tower rose, and forty thick, gleaming like burnished steel. it might as well have been a solid column of metal." (tSR, Ch.28, p.464)

it may not be its shape that makes the tower a "knife of dreams", but interestingly enough it is described as being made from some kind of steellike metal...

oh, and I'd only realized this when I reread this passage just now:

Bayle Domon has actually been at the Tower of Ghenjei, he even claims to have touched it... and right now he is with Mat.

27

wattj69: 2004-06-22

well, Fain hasn't weakened while it was still there, of course. does distance matter that much in RJ's world for this sort of thing? I don't think so. but now that the city is actually gone I think he will. this is just one possibility, another being he will be more powerful through being the sole holder of SL's power. also, there was one mention about the scar being less. I don't have the quote, but somewhere in CoT Rand is thinking about the scar being less painful or something like that.

28

Callandor: 2004-06-22

**well, Fain hasn't weakened while it was still there, of course. does distance matter that much in RJ's world for this sort of thing? I don't think so.**

So Fain wouldn't weaken if he was away from Shadar Logoth, but with it gone of course, he will?

Fain hasn't grown any weaker since heleft Shadar Logoth, and the dagger hasn't either. Moiraine gives no indication that anything leaving Shadar Logoth would become less powerful.

**but now that the city is actually gone I think he will. this is just one possibility, another being he will be more powerful through being the sole holder of SL's power.**

Why would that make any difference at all?

**also, there was one mention about the scar being less. I don't have the quote, but somewhere in CoT Rand is thinking about the scar being less painful or something like that.**

Not less.

**TITLE: Crossroads of Twilight

CHAPTER: 24 - A Strengthening Storm

The thick feather mattress sagged beneath him as he swung his legs over the side and sat up facing her. He almost pressed a hand to the old wounds in his side without thinking, then caught himself and changed the movement to buttoning up his coat. *Half-healed and never healing, those two overlapping wounds hurt since Shadar Logoth.* Or maybe he was just more aware of how they throbbed, the heat of them a furnace of fever trapped in an area smaller than the palm of his hand. One, at least, he hoped, would begin to heal with Shadar Logoth gone. Maybe there had just not been enough time yet for him to feel any difference. It was not the same side that Min had fisted - she was always gentle with that, if not always with the rest of him - but he thought he had kept the pain hidden from her. No point in giving her something more to worry over. The concern in her eyes, and in her head, must be about Cadsuane. Or the others.**

**TITLE: Crossroads of Twilight

CHAPTER: EPILOGUE - An Answer

Rand stared out of the window at the steady rain falling out of a gray sky. Another storm down out of the Spine of the World. The Dragonwall. He thought spring must be coming soon. Spring always came, eventually. Earlier here in Tear than back home, it should be, though there seemed little sign of it. Lightning forked silver-blue across the sky, and long moments passed before the peal of thunder. Distant lightning. *The wounds in his side ached.* Light, the herons branded into his palms ached, after all this time.**

29

Anubis: 2004-06-23

small nitpick.

fain doesnt want to kill rand nearly so much as he wants rand to suffer.

30

wattj69: 2004-06-23

huh, it's hard to argue with someone who has the quotes ready to go...ok, let me try to put an analogy together for this, bear with me. your house gets power from the power plant. if you don't go to the power plant very often your house still gets power through electric wires, etc. but if someone were to blow said power plant into oblivion...well, suddenly your house is having electricity problems. now, there are no physical "wires" connecting Fain to SL, but there could still be a connection, his power is originally from there (those not got from the DO that is) so isn't it possible he draws on the power from there in some way outside of the physical? isn't it possible that it supports him in some way? and with it gone, might the continuation of that power be affected?

31

Davian93: 2004-06-23

****so isn't it possible he draws on the power from there in some way outside of the physical? isn't it possible that it supports him in some way? and with it gone, might the continuation of that power be affected? ****

I would say it is possible. However with SL destroyed, it wouldnt matter. More likely is that his power came from Mordeth's soul and the merging of Fain and Mordeth. The destruction of SL wouldnt have an effect on his power since he doesnt require it. Remember that Mordeth wasnt created from SL, Mordeth created SL and its evil. Therefore, Mordeth is the powerplant in your analogy not SL.

32

charliec: 2004-06-29

****so isn't it possible he draws on the power from there in some way outside of the physical? isn't it possible that it supports him in some way? and with it gone, might the continuation of that power be affected? ****

yes, but it's equally possible that he is not connected to Shadar Logoth, and that his own personal portion of its evil is self-sustaining. IM(H)O this fits better with the infectious nature of the evil, and I've not yet noticed a quote to suggest the contrary.

33

Mairashda: 2004-06-30

"so isn't it possible he draws on the power from there in some way outside of the physical? isn't it possible that it supports him in some way? and with it gone, might the continuation of that power be affected?"

maybe fain/mordeths power came from shadar logoth... but maybe maintaining the existence of shadar logoth as a corrupted place took up a lot of his powers. now that what became of aridhol is destroyed, fain/mordeth may be able to fully use his powers for the first time.

34

Aelfinn: 2004-07-03

Have we ever had a POV from Fain since SL was *something*-ed into oblivion?

Boy, did we ever get off track! At least we haven't started arguing about Moiraine yet. YET.

35

brother of Battles: 2004-07-06

Has anyone thought that maybe the title is just a saying or a metaphore? All the charaters has dreams, or hopes that something will happen. Why couldn't "Knife of Dreams" just mean that either one or all characters are going to be hurt in that their dreams, or hopes, will not come to pass or be hindered in some way. Look at the end of CoT. Egwene was captured by the white tower. That is not a very good sign for the dreams of the rebel tower. There are also other revalations that occured in book 10 that will significally impact the progress of Rand and Company. In conclusion, I think you are all trying to place something physical on the title (eg A crown of swords, eye of the world), but in my opinion it is going to be just a saying (eg path of daggers, winter's heart, Crossroads of Twilight).

36

Brendan Reborn: 2004-07-09

If robert jordan puts "knife of dreams' as an angreal of some sort, or yet another object needed (like the horn of valere, where has it been for 8 books?) at the last battle, I will be completely let down. With only 2 more books left, I doubt that it would make for a good story, and people would probably see it as just a means to drag more into the story than is needed. Let's face it. All we need is everyone in the same place, and the seals broken and we have the books over and done with.

37

minalth: 2004-08-17

just to be annoying, it will be a sa'angreal that is more powerfull than the choeden'cal somehow, maybe not just in raw power, and it will only be able to amplify someone's channeling of spirit, which would allow them to repair the gap between the living world and the world of the dead

(nods)

I dont actually believe this, i just fealt like writing it

38

Dreamwolf: 2004-10-07

Sometimes the name of RJ's books offers insight into who the enemy will be for the duration of the story. In "A Crown of Swords" one could easily deduce the main focus would be on Samael. Slayer uses the world of dreams to travel around and kill who he needs to kill... with a knife. Wouldn't it be logical to assume Slayer will play a huge role in the upcoming book? Also, might slayer not be the "face" Rand sometimes vaguely sees?

39

fringe dweller: 2005-05-09

With Egwene captured (and shielded), and entering Tel'aran'rhiod not requiring the power, is it possible that the knife of dreams is something that she achieves as a Dreamer/dreamwalker while held in the White Tower?

40

Aiel Finn: 2005-05-09

Ewgene may enter T'A'R and start pulling people in against their will to attack them. She is told that it is evil, and put the poor victim at a great disadvantage, but she may use it to escape her captors.

41

JakOShadows: 2005-05-09

I tend to think that the title of the book will be more figurative in nature. Because unless that's a new an'greal or some such that they find, everything else is mostly figurative. You could give it all the literal connotations you want, but it will still be how you personally would look at it.

42

wooandwow: 2006-09-07

um think knife stabbing hopes and dreams, considering other book titles it is clear jordan spends a lot of time getting a title that emphasises how stuffed the world is, eg path of daggers, try walking that, crown of swords try wearing it ect