Hey guys. Just wanting to let you know that I’ve moved websites. You can find me here now:
I should be posting within the next week or so there, so look forward to it!
Hey guys. Just wanting to let you know that I’ve moved websites. You can find me here now:
I should be posting within the next week or so there, so look forward to it!
I’ve been gone for a while. I realize that. It’s been well over a month and I really should put up a hiatus post when I anticipate these things happening. Basically school got really busy and I’ve had to focus on my studies more. Taking seventeen hours if you want to do anything else with your life other than study is not the best idea, people. The funny thing is I have a list of reviews and discussions and things to write that if I sat down and planned my time out properly, I might be able to schedule things.
I suppose that’s what spring break is for, right? Haha.
Anyway. I probably won’t be posting much until after finals in May, and the next couple weeks especially are pretty crazy on the school front. So I’m basically on a semi-hiatus until the semester ends. Regardless…
My 21st birthday was a week ago and I wanted to celebrate it with people in the blogosphere! …I went to search for a gif of the Chrono Trigger characters dancing, but that failed miserably. >__>;; *awkward silence*
Back in February my boyfriend and I did the four hour drive to New Orleans for the Dark Days tour, and I accidentally ended up with a couple extra books that got signed that I have duplicates of. “Accidentally”. Basically, I’ve got a copy of Uninvited and Ignite Me that I would like to make two people very happy with. This is my first time messing with Rafflecopter though, so bare with me for any technical difficulties. Here’s a (somewhat crappy) photo to prove these things do exist!
These are the times in which I wish I owned an actual camera.
Good luck, guys! The giveaway will be running until the end of April, since my disappearances aren’t good for stats… <_<
I can’t believe there’s only 30% of this book left to read! These last seven hundred pages have been amazing and I’m excited to see how this book will end in a couple weeks~ I’m so glad I decided to participate, haha. Anyway, this week we’re discussing chapters 43 through 50, with Coffee, Cookies and Chili Peppers hosting! MAJOR SPOILERS ARE IN THE CHASMS BELOW, BEWARE.
1. What did you think of the replacement for the delightful Lamaril, or rather, what did you make of his wife, who seems to do all his work? She assumes that chasm duty is the worst punishment that she can throw at the bridge crew, so were you surprised that Kaladin saw an opportunity in it so quickly?
Everyone’s got it out for Bridge Four, I swear. I mean, I suppose they don’t want the other bridgemen to follow their example, as broken bridgemen seem to be what Sadeas prefers. They’re arrow fodder, barely even human in these people’s eyes. I’m glad Kaladin didn’t let despair overcome him again with the new assignment, and though this opportunity is essentially their last hope, he is dedicated to this (likely) futile plan. I can only hope things go well in the end, but with his track record thus far, I’m afraid we’ll see disaster. But, we have three hundred pages left and the rest of the series, so maybe they will prevail? :O
2. Please use this opportunity to list all the imaginative ways that you would like Roshone to suffer for forcing poor little Tien into the army. 😦
That man needs to fall into a chasm in the Shattered Plains (or pushed, perhaps?), somehow survive the fall, and then get dismembered one limb at a time by a chasmfiend. And then subsequently eaten. Or he could be soulcast into fire. I could also go with him being dragged behind a chull for as many miles as it takes until he is barely alive, then leave him for whatever equivalent of buzzards Roshar has. If the “buzzards” don’t get him, the highstorms will. *laughs maniacally*
3. Finally, somebody is asking questions about the inconstancy of the Parshendi artifacts and how Gavilar changed in the months leading up to his death. What do you make of the accounts that Shallan is reading? Also, what do you think about Shen, the Parshman added to the bridge crew?
The Parshendi have to be getting their Shardblades and plates from SOMEWHERE. Whether it’s from ruins they’ve stumbled upon or if some figure is gifting them, I don’t know. But it seems to be the root of most of the problems. As for our Parshman, he’s definitely got more to him than meets the eye. As do the rest of the Parshmen, I would think. I wonder when they came to be used as slaves by everyone else? And if they have a hivemind type thing like the Parshendi? If they do… I would be afraid of what happens if they all decide to rebel at once.
4. Shallan has some seriously bizarre visions or hallucinations. Do you have any new ideas about the nature of the symbol-headed figures: are they good or evil? What about the alternative world and the beads: could that really have been the soul or essence of the goblet that she spoke to before it changed into blood?
At first I thought they were malevolent beings… Now I’m not so sure. They definitely have something to do with Shallan figuring out how to Soulcast, but the connection with the king and a supposed future demise also bothers me. Or maybe I’m reading too much into things? The alternate world with the beads made me think almost of the atoms binding the goblet together, or seeing the goblet at a more molecular level. At least, this seems like an interesting way to think about it.
5. Does Kaladin’s dream / vision seem similar to those that Dalinar has been having? He is called the ‘Child of Tanavast, Child of Honor’ and there is mention of an entity called Odium, who appears to be rather bad. Do you have any speculation about these two beings, how they fit into the world that we have seen so far and why the name Odium makes Syl hiss and fly off?
It is definitely of a similar source, for sure, but they obviously have different roles to play and therefore receive different messages. I don’t really know what they are, to be honest. Odium sounds like the embodiment of evil from the information we have so far, but perhaps that is too broad of an assessment. Whatever they are, they definitely have a connection to the impending calamity that Roshar will likely face in the near future.
6. We have learnt some more about the events following Cenn’s chapter way back at the beginning of the book. Were you surprised that Kaladin defeated a Shardbearer almost singlehandedly? This still does not explain why he is a slave, but does it bring us closer to guessing?
Kaladin is the best, I swear. I’m not entirely surprised he managed to do it himself, but I WAS surprised that he relinquished his rightful prize to another. I mean, from the past info I thought it was stolen directly from him… But now I can only assume it could have been taken from the man he gave it to. We are definitely closer to the heart of the truth in this matter. Amaram was NOT prepared for that at all. Which begs the question… Why WAS there a Shardbearer in that battle in the first place? *ponders*
7. I think I made it quite clear last week that I did not trust Kabsal, so I am now feeling rather smug. However, I did not guess at the poison in the bread: did it surprise you as well? Can you see any way that Shallan can reconcile with Jasnah now that the theft has been revealed?
Oh, Kabsal. Oh, oh Kabsal… The poison was completely unexpected, especially with the antidote in the jam. Though, Kabsal was acting rather suspicious and I had already thought he had ulterior motives, I just didn’t believe he would actually go to such lengths. At this point, I don’t know if Shallan can reconcile at all with Jasnah, though I think Jasnah has a lot more up her sleeve than I think. She had to have known before. She had to…
So we’ve got a big spooky force that makes our lovely spren hiss, ehh? Sounds like signs of big things going down. 😀 See you next week, guys~
I’m slightly late this week, I know — catching up after snow days has been rough on the classwork front. I liked this section a lot, though I feel like I’m saying that every time, haha! The Way of Kings has made me a huge fan of Brandon Sanderson and I’m pretty sure as soon as Words of Radiance releases I’m diving right in. I mean, I’ve got it preordered and by the time it releases the read along should be finished~! ❤
Anyway, this week we’re discussing chapters 33 through 42, and There Were Books Involved is kindly hosting this week. OBLIGATORY MAJOR SPOILER WARNING FOR MID-BOOK CONTENT.
1. Both Kabsal and Jasnah have spoken to Shallan about stealing the Soulcaster, and both have done so in a pretty lighthearted manner, considering how serious it would actually be to steal it. Do you think Kabsal was telling the truth when he brushed off Shallan’s questions about his plan to steal the Soulcaster? Is he still interested in stealing it? Does he have other, deeper motives??
Oh, I want to like Kabsal so much and think he just likes Shallan for how she is. But the cynic in me keeps saying that there are ulterior motives. I wonder if Kabsal somehow knows that Shallan switched the Soulcasters? Maybe that’s a bit far-fetched, but maybe he’ll use that fact to his advantage. Though, like he said, if he DID steal it, there would be hell to pay and perhaps even war, so… Maybe for once I can be optimistic~
2. By the end of the section, Shallan has found out that she’ll be able to return home in one week, but she’s torn between wanting to continue her studies, and being able to take the stolen Soulcaster home. So far it looks like her theft hasn’t been detected, but do you think she’ll be found out before that time? Do you think she should leave, or might decide on her own to stay? Could something else happen to make her stay?
I seem to have a feeling that Jasnah already knows and is waiting to see what Shallan ultimately decides to do before calling her out on the theft. Really, I WANT Shallan to stay and feel that she probably will end up doing so in the end, but an alternative will have to be figured out in order to keep the family going. Perhaps it may be considered selfish of her, but I think going through with the plan will become more trouble than it’s worth and Shallan deserves some freedom after living confined for her entire life beforehand. I suppose I just like seeing scholarship win, hehe.
3. How much do you think Jasnah actually knows about the theft of her Soulcaster? Is it even remotely possible that Jasnah is still in the dark about it? If she knows, did she in fact dupe Shallan with a fake, as Shallan theorizes? Or did Jasnah let her steal it? Why??
Like I said in the previous question, I think Jasnah already knows and is maybe even testing Shallan to see how her actions pan out. I don’t think the discussions on philosophy were a coincidence, and it could even be an additional lesson on that front. If, in fact, she does know, it is also quite possible Jasnah realizes Shallan’s family situation and maybe will even find it in her heart to give some form of assistance if Shallan chooses to stay in Kharbranth. Or maybe my prior optimism is growing too much and I’m being too hopeful, I dunno.
4. During the Highstorm, Kaladin experiences a lull during which the wind and rain stop, he feels no more pain, and he sees an enormous “face of blackness, yet faintly traced in the dark”. The face is described as, “Inhuman. Smiling.” Was Kaladin just hallucinating? If not, do you think this being had something to do with recharging the sphere? With Kaladin somehow feeling better before the storm kicked up again? Or could this being be malevolent? Thoughts/theories??
I wonder if this is the Stormfather figure that keeps getting mentioned now and then. I mean, I don’t think Kaladin was necessarily hallucinating…. And it would make sense that the sphere was recharged due to the energy it would take to manifest such a being or at least some aspect of this theoretical “Stormfather” that we don’t know the details about. Since Kaladin survived the highstorm’s judgment, I don’t think the being is malevolent, but nor do I think it’s good either. Indifferent is probably the best answer to that — I mean, humans are likely puny in comparison, so why should it have a necessarily good or evil disposition when it comes to humanity? I’m curious to see if it shows up again and if so, what we’ll learn about the nature of the highstorms from that. *sits patiently*
5. Before Kaladin is forced to endure the Highstorm, he tells his men to come out after the storm is over; he says he’ll open his eyes and look back at them, and they’ll know that he survived. Kaladin obviously survives, and everyone in Bridge Four is really glad about that. But we haven’t yet seen a reaction from anyone other than Kal’s men. Do you think Kaladin’s survival could have a wider impact than just giving his own group of bridgemen hope?
Perhaps once word spreads, it may both give other bridgemen hope as well as scare the everliving shit out of the rest of Sadeas’s army, if not the entire army. I mean, he survived a highstorm and that’s unheard of. Therefore he’s a source to be reckoned with and it might make the lighteyed soldiers and even perhaps the highprinces feel threatened. Kaladin should be watching his back after this, for certain. Who knows if someone would want to take him out because of his survival?
6. We learn quite a bit about Teft in this section… kind of. But pretty much everything we learn just leads to more questions. What do you think about these “Envisagers” Teft mentions? How much do you think Teft knows about Kaladin’s ability to use Stormlight? It seemed like Teft became wary of Kaladin after he recovered – why? Do you think he’ll tell Kaladin about what he knows?
Kaladin can use Stormlight. Szeth can use Stormlight. Perhaps they are both of this same class of people that Teft mentions? I mean, if he’s familiar with this happening, then it must not be quite as uncommon as we are lead to believe, but perhaps the Envisagers, rather than keeping the peace or being inherently good, have caused quite a lot of problems in Teft’s life. He knows more than he lets on, that’s for certain… And I’m kind of afraid as to what the information will entail, if he does decide to tell Kaladin. The threads of complication are being woven ever tighter…
That being said, I’m sure we’ll find out soon enough.
Jasnah’s philosophy lesson! Putting down victim blaming! She is one of my favorites, I swear — perhaps because I relate to her and to some extent Shallan more than anyone else in the novel.
Gaaaah, I’m already itching to be reading the next section even though I have so much schoolwork I should be focusing on. But booooooks. BOOOOOOOKS. I like reading something other than textbooks every once and a while, you know?
Punk Rock Jesus — Sean Murphy
Released: April 9th, 2013 by Vertigo
Links: Amazon, Book Depository
A reality TV show starring a clone of Jesus Christ causes chaos across the U.S. of the near future in PUNK ROCK JESUS, a new graphic novel written and drawn by Sean Murphy, the acclaimed illustrator of JOE THE BARBARIAN and AMERICAN VAMPIRE.
J2 causes both outrage and adulation. Religious zealots either love or hate the show, angry politicians worry about its influence on the nation, and members of the scientific community fear the implications of cloning a human being at all, let alone the Son of God.
Thomas McKael is the clones’s bodyguard and former IRA operative, who despite his turbulent past is hired to protect the new Jesus—a baby who captivates the world, but grows up to become an angry teenager.
When falling ratings force the network to cut Jesus’s mother from the series the young star runs away, renounces his religious heritage and forms a punk rock band. And what starts off as babysitting for Thomas becomes an epic battle, as Jesus goes to war against the corporate media complex that created him.
I want to start off this review with a couple of disclaimers. The most important of which probably being that if you do not like reading graphic novels or other mediums that depict religiously controversial content, then this is not for you. I’m sure you may have realized that from the title and synopsis above, but I figured it might be good to mention such a thing. Additionally, I will admit to being sympathetic towards a lot of the views perpetuated on the side opposite of religion in this graphic novel; however, as you may be able to extrapolate from my rating, this does not make me automatically start raving about the amazingness of this comic. So I’m a little less biased than you might think. ;D Finally, while the art is absolutely fan-flipping-tastic, I am mostly critiquing this on the writing and story content as I feel that I’m not quite qualified to be an art critic.
So this graphic novel essentially has two halves: exposition/buildup and the actual punk rock portion that we are anticipating from the beginning. And yes, while the buildup does make the latter portion all the more satisfying and understandable, I felt like more time was spent building up the scenario than the actual execution. When we finally get to see Chris, the clone of Jesus, rocking it up, it feels so much more rushed than the rest of the comic that it is ultimately disappointing, with the ending feeling like it was quickly slapped on. Which is quite sad, too, when the premise held a lot of potential to be ungodly fun. That isn’t to say it completely fails in this regard though. I mean, I can’t help but love that Sean Murphy drew a badass looking picture of Carl Sagan, among various gunfights and other action-packed scenes. Also, I think I have a new love for genetically engineered polar bears to cuddle with.
The plot does give a somewhat heavy-handed examination of the role of religion within our society versus scientific advancement, with some unfortunately stereotypical fundamentalists being a consistent backdrop throughout. In fact, a good chunk of the characters I felt did not get time to be filled out well enough to where I had trouble emotionally connecting. I did like, though, that we get quite a spectrum of belief within the cast of characters, from the militantly atheist to the staunch Catholic seeking redemption, with skeptical scientists and others filling things out. While not kind in its treatment of religion, the graphic novel manages to at least give multiple points of view, with the Catholic Thomas McKael easily being the best written character. McKael’s backstory is heartbreaking, so be prepared with perhaps a tissue or two. Just warning you.
We also touch on some other issues that were for me personally hard to read. Gwen, Chris’s mother, deals with a lot of predictable issues for being locked up on an island taking care of a child while constantly in front of cameras on live television. Post-partum depression being among those. Murphy handles these issues well, I think, especially on the psychological front; I felt like he did do his research before writing and it shows on multiple fronts. I mean, he showed the psychological effects of isolation quite well and I have no complaints. Of course, reality television gets a heavy-handed treatment with this story, but that’s not all that entirely surprising.
Overall, I felt like this comic does succeed at making one think critically about their beliefs, even if I felt that the storytelling was flawed. Read this one with an open mind, especially if you hold strong religious beliefs.
WAIT WHAT? I have this up on time? Seriously? Snow days are quite fun like that, and I feel rather accomplished. 😀
This week we’re delving into chapters 28 through 32, with me finally exclaiming phrases at my kindle in anticipation for the crazy. I definitely got through this segment faster than the others, if for the growing excitement I’m feeling as this novel is progressing. I apologize for not listing the hosts in the past few segments, but this time I’ll let you know where to go: Tethyan Books!
Anyway. SPOILERS RESIDE IN THE DEEP, DARK DEPTHS BELOW. LIKE KAIJU. THEY MIGHT EAT YOUR GODDAMN FACE.
1.Dalinar made a very dramatic decision at the beginning of this section. Do you think it was the right one? What do you think will happen to him, Adolin and (and the not-united Alethi) if he follows through?
I think for the sake of his family as well as to give him time to figure out the full picture of what is truly going on, abdicating was probably the best decision. The longer he stays in power, the more his current problems would escalate as far as I see it. Adolin may need a lot of guidance to cool his hot head as he goes on, especially with Sadeas’s current actions being the most suspicious we’ve seen to date. Unfortunately, the country looks to be farther and farther away from Dalinar’s goal of unification and convincing Adolin to follow that path seems rather difficult at the least…
2.We’ve gotten to see a little more of Shinovar with Rysn the apprentice merchant. In terms of plants and animals, it seems to be pretty much like our world. How do you think it happened that there’s such an ‘ordinary’ place, or what do you think might have happened to turn the rest of the world so unusual? Given this and the chapter on Szeth, do you have any more ideas on what the meaning of his “Truthless” title might be?
What seems to have happened is that due to the mountains breaking up the highstorms, Shinovar did not have the same evolutionary pressures as the rest of Roshar to survive the catastrophic winds. While it isn’t possible for soil to stay in one place in most of the continent, Shinovar is a rare exception. Therefore, it makes sense that it is a country less foreign to us in its ecology. I have a lot of fun watching the other character’s reactions to what they find as a strange anomaly when we as readers feel comfortable with the place, haha.
I wonder if, in order to become “Truthless”, if you must commit a seriously blasphemous act or your genealogy/particular powers determine such a fate? Perhaps they wanted to put a strange sort of safeguard on the power Szeth has? Though that doesn’t make sense with how easily people can utilize his strengths…
3. Shallan and Jasnah’s story has returned! Based on Jasnah’s words to Dalinar, and the clues Shallan is picking up, what do you think Jasnah’s project is about? What do you think she hopes to accomplish?
Jasnah’s project…. She’s investigating the circumstances of Gavilar’s death in more detail, it seems, with particular focus on the far past that may indicate some relation to Dalinar’s visions. There’s so much build up to the eventual crazy that will happen! I’m rather excited!
4. Concerning Shallan, it’s starting to seem that her drawing ability is a supernatural gift. Do you have any theories on the bizarre figures Shallan accidentally drew behind the king?
Perhaps these figures tie into the visions Dalinar has been having and the events that are yet to come. It seems quite the omen and does not seem to spell good things for the Kharbranthian monarchy. I do not have a good feeling about them. AT ALL. *shivers*
5. Back to the bridge crews, now that we’ve seen a bit more into Gaz’s perspective, does he seem any more sympathetic? Why do you think he owes Lamaril money?
I feel for him, having to hide sympathies. It’s nice to see that he’s definitely more of a gray character than at first glance, though that does not make me excuse his behavior in the least. I’m not entirely sure as to why he owes Lamaril money… he could have been in a dicey situation that Lamaril bailed him out of, but at a high cost. Or, perhaps, he had greater sympathies for bridgemen in the past and paid dearly for them. *shrugs*
6. Kaladin has won over his bridge crew, and enacted a brilliant plan to protect them—which utterly ruined the military strategy. Do you think his plan was a good one, or should he have seen the chaos coming? What do you think will happen to him next? Also, what do you think he’ll do if he figures out the real reason why bridgemen aren’t allowed shields?
Kaladin was entirely too focused on the bridgemen’s fate, who, when dying in smaller numbers, helps out the army rather than hurts them. I don’t think he could have completely foreseen the scope of his actions, but a wider outlook may have saved him from a lot of future hurt. I’m rather scared for Kaladin, but at the same time I wonder if it will draw attention from Dalinar and his plans on testing a single bridge to use, since the Bridge Four crew is inventive and resourceful and would be the perfect candidates for such a thing. I highly doubt Sadeas will want them around after this particular venture, anyway.
Once Kaladin realizes the reason for the lack of shields, I’m certain his mistrust of lighteyes will only grow until it perhaps is almost irreversible. Only someone very special could break that cycle of hatred, I think — Dalinar being very different from the rest of the Alethi, he may be the one to do that. But who knows?
Szeth’s new masters. Oh god. OH GOD. IT BEGINS. WE’RE IN FOR IT NOW GUYS. *begins building bomb shelter*
See you next week for more and more excitement. ❤
Hello, again~ I know I’ve only been posting for this read along, but hopefully with some good time management I can be posting more often soon. We’ll see – I really can’t stress myself too much or I’ll go insane, haha. Anyway, this week propelled the book even more so as we begin to finally get some answers and yet are given more questions to consider. It always seems to be that way though, doesn’t it? Regardless- SPOILERS FOR CHAPTERS 20 THROUGH 27 RESIDE BELOW, LIKE KRAKENS IN THE SEA.
1. We seem to be getting more and more proof that there is some ”luck” or magic at play when it comes to Kaladin’s safety, survival and his skills – especially during those battle scenes. Even when performing that Kata in the Chasm, there was something incredible about his movements according to the rest of the crew. Initially the blade seemed to be the source of his skills (to me at least), what do you think might be fueling his powers? Do you think they’re getting stronger?
I believe I mentioned in a comment section that I think Kaladin is drawing upon Stormlight without quite realizing it, a more untrained version of what Szeth has going on. I may be way off the mark, but the series being called The Stormlight Archive makes me think my thoughts could be very much possible. I don’t know if his powers are necessarily getting stronger, but perhaps more noticeable by others? Or he could be exhibiting them more since he found a sense of himself again. I’m not quite sure.
2. We were introduced to Navani, King Gavilar’s widow and the current King Elhokar’s mother. What was your initial impression of her? There seems to be some complicated history between her and Dalinar, do you think she might end up being an ally or an eventual hindrance?
I’m on the fence as to whether Navini scares me or if she’s just a bad ass woman who doesn’t take shit from anyone. Most importantly, she knows how to use her assets to toy around with others and get what she wants. This would make her quite a dangerous player if she wished to cause trouble. I have some inclination that she’s trying to get power herself and may be one of the more important players in all of this to watch. Overall, her appearance makes me nervous, as does that appointed meeting with Dalinar. Oh, and the fact that she criticizes her son, THE KING, at the table! She is certainly crossing lines she should not be crossing… if anything, from what the current atmosphere is like, she’ll end up causing some sort of trouble. That term femme fatale comes to mind…..
3. What did you make of Sadeas’ maneuver against Dalinar to gain the King’s favor by being named the High Prince of Information? How do you reconcile his actions with the advice Dalinar received ”to trust” Sadeas?
Sadeas, Sadeas, Sadeas… Tricky son of a bitch, that one. I keep not wanting to be wary of him because of how obvious him being a villain would be, you know? I keep wanting to know more of his backstory than we do and figure out what makes him tick. Being named High Prince of Information makes him like the head of the new secret police, and I don’t like it one bit. Though, perhaps he has a grander plan in all this that isn’t as obvious. I really want to trust the advice given to Dalinar, but we’ll see, I suppose.
4. Were you surprised when Rock admitted to Kaladin that he was seemingly born being able to see the Spren and therefore could see Syl following Kaladin around? That led to a pivotal point for Kaladin, gaining Rock’s favor and then Teft’s. What were your thoughts on that whole scene? Can you speculate as to why some people are able to see the spren when others cannot?
I wasn’t entirely surprised? I mean, the existence of races that can more readily see the spren isn’t something that seems unheard of. Perhaps some races are more sensitive to such creatures than others. I was just happy Kaladin finally has allies. Rock as a character is absolutely hilarious too, with that whole deal about using chull dung in Sadeas’s food. Funniest reason to become a bridgeman ever.
5. We got to see Adolin confront his father Dalinar because of his visions and lay all his cards on the table. Clearly Adolin thinks his father is losing it and his words seemed to shake Dalina’s own convictions as well. Do you think this will have a lasting effect on Dalinar’s belief in his visions? Not to mention his acting on them? Moreover, do you think Adolin will ever be convinced that there is more to Dalinar’s visions any time soon?
I don’t think Adolin will be convinced until some calamity happens where Dalinar can say “I told you so”. Poor Dalinar, however… He keeps trying to do the right thing but is so torn, which doesn’t help things at all. His disgust during the battle with the Parshendi, for example, worries me a bit. The only way to ever convince any of his fellow highprinces or the people close to him is to work at things slowly and not try to cause massive change instantly, which to an extent he’s doing. The whole confrontation with Adolin, due to how high profile it has become, will be hindersome at best and devastating at worst. I don’t blame him for questioning the things he’s seen after that.
6. As if in further indication of Dalinar and Kaladin’s collision course towards one another, Dalinar has agreed to train a bridge crew – without putting them directly into assault or harm’s way (of course, love these two!!) do you think their joined efforts might be enough to change the way the other High Princes go about things during battle? Especially Sadeas?
I feel that this collision course can only do good things in the end, especially in Kaladin’s case. I’m hoping his skills in leading others and perhaps in battle can be realized by better people, elevating his status to a place where he could actually do something. Kaladin on Dalinar’s side could only be beneficial, it’s just a matter of time to see when he gets noticed and what ultimately comes out of it. Only with evidence will the highprinces change their ways. Let’s see if we get it.
Kaladin is slowly revealing what actually happened to make him a slave. From what I can gather, Brightlord Amaram probably did not like the fact he defeated a shardbearer and likely secured Kaladin’s winnings for himself, citing an arbitrary reason that would send the poor man down into the cracks of society. Selfish bastard. Ugh.
I managed to get this up only a day late this time! Perhaps next week I will be caught up and posting on Wednesdays! Or not. I do have two exams next week. GAH.
…I broke my promise. I know. I’m so sorry. I realized the massive amount of schoolwork I had this week was… a bit insane. And had to finish it before finishing the reading. I am more than caught up now, though, so here we go~ SPOILERS FOR CHAPTERS 14 TO 19 ARE BELOW, GUYS.
1. After the Chasmfiend attack there were a number of altercations. Two of these that particularly drew my interest were: the little scene where Wit ridiculed Sadeas – which seems to be a dangerous thing to do given that this could result in a dual or assassination – any ideas about why Wit seems to enjoy provoking Sadeas so much and: during the discussion with the King, Dalinar and Adolin – it seemed that the King became fleetingly suspicious – and later in the story the same look of suspicion crossed his features again during conversation with Dalinar. What do you think is going on in the King’s head in relation to Dalinar?
I’m pretty sure the whole exchange of dialogue between Wit and Sadeas is due to how absolutely easy and fun it is to make fun of the guy. If I was in Wit’s position, I would mercilessly make fun of Sadeas too, knowing he is too concerned with his status to worry about an assassination attempt coming back to him. As for Elhokar’s suspicions… someone is likely pushing such thoughts to him; I doubt it’s his own conclusion. I don’t believe that someone is Sadeas after the response Dalinar received from the voice in his vision, but it could perhaps be one of the other highprinces or someone else of influence. I will definitely be watching this situation closely.
2. We seemed to get a little more insight about why the bridgemen are not given shields of protection – what did you think of the reasoning behind this and what do you make of Sadeas – is he trustworthy or not?
Though I do not completely agree with Sadeas’s reasoning, I do understand that he wants to protect his soldiers from as much harm as possible. Many people wouldn’t care about the deaths of murderers, deserters, and slaves, and obviously he is in that particular camp. But as Dalinar would say, it’s both wasteful and very much against the Codes, even if they aren’t followed anymore. Perhaps Alethkar would benefit from a return to them. As for Sadeas being trustworthy… I’m still on the fence. He hasn’t committed any acts that would make me feel as though he would betray the king. It almost would be too obvious.
3. Elhokar has suspicions about attempts on his life – is he paranoid or not and, if not, who do you suspect might be responsible?
There is definitely some sort of paranoia going on here. There’s obviously some influence due to how Elhokar’s father was killed, but perhaps there are individuals spreading rumors to specifically reach him or something of the sort to make him more suspicious of the people around him (see question one).
4. Kaladin is a very intriguing character, what did you make of the latest bridge scene where he put himself at the front of the bridge and then his actions following that? Did you think it revealed anything more about him?
I think it managed to highlight even more the behavior he exhibited back when he was a squad leader, going to the point where he almost self-sacrificing to help other people. Really, it both shows his bravery and how much he really cares. Kaladin is growing quickly into my favorite character of the book, especially because I relate to the fallacies he has. *hugs at Kaladin*
5. During Elhokar and Dalinar’s later discussion the king said that Dalinar was becoming more like Gavilar near to his end ‘When he began to act … erratically” It seems like Dalinar is becoming more like his brother. Do you think this is significant??
I think it is significant in the sense that it might be foretelling a tragic end to Dalinar’s life if he isn’t careful. Additionally, he is going to be seen as more and more mad by the people around him, which is quite unfortunate due to the fact that his visions, if the objective realized, will undoubtedly save many lives. WHY DOES NO ONE EVER LISTEN WHEN THEY HAVE THE CHANCE, GODDAMNIT?!
6. We finally witness one of Dalinar’s visions. Do you think there is any significance about the visions always taking place during a storm and what were your feelings about this particular vision?
I loved seeing the basics of how the Knights Radiant operated. Makes me really want to learn more about them — I’ll need to be patient, I suppose. The visions make sense taking place during the highstorms, as the seems to be some sort of otherwordly atmosphere coming through during then. The Essence were quite frightening creatures, and I’m wondering because the setting was during the Desolation Era if we’ll be seeing such monstrosities again soon. Thus the need to unite against a common enemy….
No extras this time around, as I got behind and then got farther ahead and don’t want to put spoilers for anything farther ahead in here. I’ll give you some this coming week though~ Thank you for being patient with me!
Apologies for being late on the second week! I finished Chapters 7-13 a couple days ago, but the semester started back up on Wednesday and I found out that my apartment’s internet has decided to go absolutely bonkers. Haven’t been able to get anything up until today. Gah. Anyway! Onward with the read along~ Spoilers for Chapters 7-13 reside below.
1. Shallan’s determination pays off, but Jasnah Kholin seems to change her mind a bit suddenly, and when Shallan isn’t expecting her to. She mentions knowing of Shallan’s family… Do you think perhaps she knows more than she admits? Or is she really just a bit more soft-hearted than she lets on?
I have a feeling that it’s a mix of both. I doubt Jasnah realizes Shallan’s true plot, but she probably knows more details about the going-ons of the family than we think. Perhaps not that Shallan’s father is dead, but maybe she knows about how he used his fabrial or other such secrets. I believe though that she has to seem, on the surface, tougher to be able to stand the criticism she no doubt gets from being an atheist, which I can respect. Otherwise she may have been torn down long ago by the opinions of others.
2. Yalb comes to the bargaining rescue as Shallan tries to buy books… Do you think there’s going to be a bigger part in events for him to play?
I really hope so! Yalb is quite the interesting and resourceful character and I would really like to see his character explored in more detail. I’m sure he has quite a history; with all those tricks up his sleeves I think there is more behind him than just a simple sailor. I don’t think he will end up being antagonistic at least. …I hope.
3. Part One ends with a ray of hope for Kaladin, as he rediscovers a sense of purpose… What did you think of the scene in the Honour Chasm, and then with Gaz afterward?
I think the whole scene in the Honor Chasm just made me love Syl more. Without Syl, Kaladin would be a mangled mess at the bottom of the chasm and of no use to anyone. There seems to be some hope that Bridge 4 can become less deadly and, most importantly, united to stand against the dangers they face. And the whole thing with Gaz afterward… I still don’t trust the guy whatsoever, but boy did it feel nice to see him get back some of what he’s given.
4. We catch up with Szeth for an interlude, and things are very different for him… What do you make of his choice to enslave himself – if it is in fact a choice…?
His status as Truthless goes back well before the assassination, so I can only suppose if it was a choice he is punishing himself for actions he performed in the past. Possibly much worse than killing the king. I wonder the extent of the crimes he has committed? With that sort of power, he certainly has the capability of creating mass chaos.
5. We also meet Dalinar Kholin, Jasnah’s father, and get something of a hint that he’s important where the Radiants are concerned… What do you think Dalinar’s ‘fits’ might mean?
There seems to be some sort of impending calamity that Dalinar’s visions are hinting at. Perhaps uniting the kingdom will help either stave off this “Everstorm” or at least minimize the damage that happens. Either way, it seems that no one really wants to listen to him. No one ever listens to the person who can help it seems… Then again, it is a bit hard to believe a person who is essentially having hallucinations. I’m sure there will be a lot of regret later on.
Other fun stuff:
I worry about Elhokar’s behavior. Such recklessness is going to get him killed if Dalinar or others aren’t around to save him. And if he dies… things will become quite chaotic, to say the least.
AND I KNEW IT. THEY BROKE THE DAMN ECONOMY WITH THOSE FABRIALS! Obviously it’s quite frowned upon if they had to hide this fact, though…
I promise to get the third post up on time! Thank you for reading, and see you next week~
Week one is here! I’ve been quite excited to start this read along, as it’s my first. (Yes, I’m a read along virgin! Hooray for cherry popping~!) This should be quite a lot of fun, I think. This week we’re covering the Prelude through Chapter 6, so warning you now that THERE ARE SPOILERS BELOW FOR THIS SECTION. Early book spoilers, but nonetheless.
1) Is this your first Brandon Sanderson experience? Any expectations going into this read along?
Yes, actually. Though I do own Elantris and a box set of the Mistborn Trilogy in paperback format, and Steelheart on my kindle… Yes, I know I buy too many books and don’t read enough of them. (Owning the book is half the battle, right? Right?) Because of his presence on the NPR Top 100 Sci-Fi/Fantasy novels as voted by fans, and this book’s presence on that list in particular, I do have some rather high expectations for this novel. Especially since it’s got over a 4.5 average star rating on Goodreads. I dislike having expectations of an author going into my first work of theirs, but I suppose it was unavoidable in this case.
2) In the Prelude to the Stormlight Archive, we see that Talenel (Taln) died and his sword is unaccounted for. Jerzien and company have decided it is best for 1 to suffer instead of 10. What do you make of this scene?
Due to the huge time skip (4500 years to the prologue? Crazy!), I can only assume this plays into the mythology of Sanderson’s world. We keep hearing mentions of the Radiants, which are revered as practically deities, so perhaps this is the source of the legends. I do remember reading a part that used names similar to Jerzien, Talenel, etc., though not quite the same, which makes this hypothesis a lot stronger. I’m quite curious to find out how this plays a role in the larger storyline.
3) What did you think of Szeth’s fighting abilities and the fight scenes? Any thoughts on the crystalline sphere and King Gavilar Kholin’s last words?
It was a bit difficult following along with the fight scenes at first. I tend to have issues when certain words and phrases get repetitive in text in too short of an interval, which became a slight problem in these scenes to me. However, with the explanation of the Lashings as the fight went along, while breaking the flow of the narrative to a degree, helped a lot with my understanding of what was going on. Szeth’s got quite a bit of talent going there… I certainly wouldn’t want to piss him off.
I’m sure the sphere will play some interesting role at some point in the story, as I don’t think it would be mentioned in a prologue if that wasn’t the case. Same with the last words. At this point I can’t quite speculate on what sort of role, but I have a feeling the crystalline sphere won’t be in the right hands and will cause some sort of chaos at some point.
4) Each chapter proper starts with a few words from a dying person, their station, and status in life. Any thoughts on what these portend?
It seems as though they’re having some insight to the bigger picture before death, regardless of who they are. It’s pretty foreboding. Possibly foretelling a great calamity to happen in the future? Someone’s obviously trying to figure it out through collecting these samples. It reminds me of the collective dreams that occur in “The Call of Cthulhu” to some extent.
5) Kaladin went from warrior to slave in a matter of the first 2 chapters. Care to speculate on the details of how his life changed so drastically?
He apparently didn’t kill the right man, as far as I know. He’s been painted falsely as a deserter, too… I can only assume he pissed off the wrong person. Probably this Amaram fellow. Poor Kaladin is suffering dearly, too. Someone really hates him and hates him a lot to do this to him. (Or is just a sadistic fucker.) I really want to give him a hug after all the shit that went down with his first experience in Bridge 4…
6) Sylphrena (Syl) the Windspren seems attached to Kaladin. Are you enjoying her character? Do you like the Spren in general in the worldbuilding so far?
She’s mischievous and fun while caring about Kaladin, so I definitely like her a lot. I’m looking forward to seeing more of her and watching her character develop. Spren of the talkative sort are pretty much unheard of, so she has to have something that’s making her unique. The entire concept of Spren inhabiting the world is pretty interesting, though it seems like it could cause a lot of various issues. How the hell would you be able to keep emotions to yourself? Everyone could read what you’re feeling based on the Spren around you, so keeping secrets would be really difficult. It would drive me crazy… *shivers*
7) Shallan Davar has finally caught up to Brightness Jasnah Kholin and her soulcaster. Jasnah and the jeweled fabril can change stone to smoke; what else do you think it can do?
Apparently the best of the best fabrial can transmute quite a number of things, from what is mentioned. I mean, perhaps they could turn stone into rare gemstones or other things of an elemental nature. Would be a pretty great way to build wealth for the kingdom, though it would REALLY mess up the economic system. I got slight Fullmetal Alchemist vibes from this Soulcaster business, though I’m certain it’s not quite as extensive as that. And probably does not have an equivalent exchange principle. Don’t listen to me on this, really.
Other fun things:
I want to know what this safehand business is about. Why is covering the left hand necessary? It’s some sort of modesty thing, but what is it about a hand that requires modesty? Do they have a special use for their left hand that makes it obscene to look at? Are they marked in some strange way? I’m rather confused.
That’s that until next week. See you next Wednesday for the next installment!