Despite this book being titled The Dragon Reborn, the Dragon Reborn himself has very little screen time in this novel. He spends all of his time alone, and we get only a few (very short) glimpses inside his head.
However, this technique works brilliantly; everyone, no matter their birth, station, or circumstance, is affected by Rand, either because of his intense ta’veren-nes or because he is in fact the infamous Dragon reborn. He changes the world simply by existing, despite his stubborn resolve to not be controlled. We see some of Rand’s unintended power by viewing the world through the eyes of Mat, Perrin, Nynaeve, Egwene, and Elayne.
Mat begins to fulfill his awesome potential now that he is finally rid of that bloody dagger: he beats Galad and Gawyn singlehandedly with a stick moments after rising from his deathbed; he rescues three very bossy and ungrateful girls–yes, girls, not women–from 13 Black Ajah and a Forsaken; and he provides some of the few laugh-out-loud moments throughout the entire series. We all love a good hero, even if he is a bit of a rascal.
Meanwhile, Perrin stunts his awesomeness a bit by refusing to accept his connection with the wolves, but his leadership skills, blacksmith abilities, and intense loyalty to those he loves redeem him a bit.
As for the supergirls–Nynaeve, Egwene, and Elayne–rest assured that they begin to get their comuppence several books later, although a few more slaps from Elayne wouldn’t have gone amiss.
Everything comes full circle in The Dragon Reborn, though this is probably the last time (aside from the beginning of book 4) that all of the Two Rivers folk (plus Lan/Moiriane, Aviendha, and Elayne) are all on the same page (no pun intended).