The Way of Kings Read Along Part IX

Stout as a bookstand.
Stout as a bookstand.

This week, Musings on Fantasia is our host, so make sure to swing by her place.

Here is the SCHEDULE in case you want to jump in and join us. Anyone is welcome.

And don’t forget that awesome giveaway that is still going on – both The Way of Kings and Words of Radiance are part of the giveaway.

Chapters 58-65 are covered. Spoilers are having a party below!

1. Adolin has a change of heart, not only about his father, but about how he views the war. How do you think this will affect the story going forward?

Well, if Dalinar should fall or be incapacitated, or decide to leave, or be captured, etc., then I think Adolin is much more ready to take the reins and lead people towards a real, honorable goal. Not just gemheart hunting. I think he sees the worth now of treating this like a war instead of some tournament game. And along with that comes the understanding of being sober, being uniformed, being armed, etc.

2. Elhokar reveals that he sees figures with symbol heads, which sound suspiciously like the ones Shallan keeps drawing. What do you make of this?

I wouldn’t think that Elhokar and Shallan have a lot in common. Shallan is artistic, brainy, curious about the world around her, a scholar. Elhokar is still a young man enjoying the game of ruling and racking up gem hearts. So I would suspect this means that the Symbolheads are attracted to people who can affect the course of mankind. Yeah, it’s a big guess.

Shallan can soulcast, and we are pretty sure she has a Shardblade. And now she is attached to Jasnah in a way. All of these things together could mean that Shallan will become a mover and shaker of events.

Elhokar……while not the brightest pea in the pod, he is the King. He can drastically affect events with a nod of approval or a tantrum of disapproval.

Maybe the Symbolheads are simply recording history? Following the movers and shakers about real time to write about events in the Human Realm?

3. What do you make of Dalinar’s most recent vision? Was the king he talked to really Nohadon, author of The Way of Kings? If so, what do you think the timeline is? What happened before and after what Dalinar saw? Were the strange, rock-like corpses really Voidbringers?

I think it was Nohadon. In each prior vision, Dalinar was meant to help out, assist, or watch something tremendously important that would change his thoughts on the past event. Like Dalinar helped safe that small family from the Voidbringers. In another vision, he witnessed ‘the day the Radiants forsook humanity’ which was them giving up their Shards. He didn’t understand why they did it, but it wasn’t the denouncement as recorded in the ‘history’ books.

So, in this vision, I think Dalinar’s role was to encourage Nohadon to write his book, planting the seed for later in Nohadon’s life. Nohadon, after the cities are rebuilt, after the farms are back in business, once peace reigns again and he is bored old man, he will sit down and write The Way of Kings.

I am not sure about the Voidbringers and the rock-like corpses. As this is a reread for me, I kind of know the answer to the Voidbringer question. So, I won’t spoil anything here.

4. Dalinar and Navani finally share a passionate kiss, and then start conducting a covert romance. What are your impressions of the relationship? Has your opinion of Navani changed at all?

I am so glad these two finally got some of their feelings out in the open. Well, I really hope that Navani is being honest. I am still a little leery of her, but that might be because of her cold-then-hot behavior of the past (explained by her not knowing if Dalinar was interested in her, or hated her gut). If she is being truthful, then she may well turn out to be an awesome character.

As for their relationship, I expect Dalinar to take the longest to get use to it, especially in public. Haha! And I expect Navani to occasionally enjoy making him blush in public, on purpose!

5. Kaladin’s decoy plan works almost miraculously well. How do you see this affecting the story going forward, and in what way? Address the issue both for Kaladin and his men, and for the war at large.

So if Kaladin isn’t executed for his independent thinking, then I expect that Sadeas (or his underlings) will require Kaladin to do the bone-arrow dance each time his bridge crew is called out.

As for the war at large, this is a trickier question. We know that both the Parshmen and Parshendi become enraged when one of their dead is touched. So I expect that seeing a human dressed in Parshendi bones will become a sign to the Parshendi of what depths of depravity the humans are willing to go to. I wouldn’t be surprised if this stirs them into being more aggressive or resuming raids on the war camps or bringing more warriors, especially archers, to the plateau assaults.

6. So Moash wants to kill someone out of vengeance. Any guesses who or why?

A lighteyes? But that covers a lot of people. I think it is someone who, directly or indirectly, got someone killed he cared about. Perhaps one of the highprinces? Or maybe the dufus king himself? That would be quite an endeavor if Moash plotted and tried to take out Elhokar. Haha! And then Elhokar would be vindicated that ‘someone’ was really trying to assassinate him.

7. Why do you think Sadeas abandoned Dalinar as he did? Was this done intentionally? Was it planned in advance? What are your thoughts?

As this is a reread, I remember this part. So let me just say that my emotions were all a-twist the first time I read this section. It seemed that the visions had been guiding Dalinar, had held true. Sadeas had his chance to gut Dalinar’s credibility with the king and he didn’t. They teamed up and Dalinar saved his ass. Sadeas was even giving The Way of Kings a listen. The two might never be really good friends, but they seemed to have common goals.

And then Sadeas leaves midfight. Is he injured and his men are falling back on established protocol? Does Sadeas see some bigger, badder threat that Dalinar hasn’t seen yet? So many questions!

Other Tidbits:

Adolin’s friends, Toral, Danlan, and Jakamav, all seem a bit vapid. But, until recently, Adolin himself was a bit vapid too.

Adolin seems to be quite the duelist. Resi was a poor loser. I wonder if it is just him (Resi) or if most of the lighteyes who enter these little war tourneys have the same petulant reaction when they lose a duel?

Any speculation on what has happened with Gaz? Kaladin asked Brightness Hashal about him, is he well? And she curtly answered, No. Hmm….well, that doesn’t sound good. But why keep Gaz’s whereabouts a secret? The lighteyes seem to love making examples of people.

Syl had my favorite quote this section: ‘Don’t be so risky. If you die, I go stupid again, you know.’

Followed closely by: ‘Chasmfiend,’ Kaladin said. ‘Really?’ She (Syl) sounded excited. ‘We could chase after it!’

It was pretty freaking awesome when Kaladin trusted Syl by cutting the rope and dropping back down into the chasm. Very impressive!

Navani and her painrial. Now that would be immensely useful on a farm!

Navani figured out that Dalinar was speaking a line from a Dawnchant, in a language all but dead and forgotten. This proves that Dalinar isn’t crazy, but it just seems to raise more questions.

At one point, the Parshendi archers are getting ready to send a volley of 50 arrows at Kaladin, after he’s done his little bone dance and used up him Stormlight. And Dalinar crashes into the back of the Parshendi and saves Kaladin and his men. But the thing that stands out for Kaladin is that Dalinar salutes the bridgemen. Could this be the first, tiniest turning point for Kaladin and lighteyes?

My Fellow Artifabrians:

Musings on Fantasia

There Were Books Involved

Caffeinated Life

On Starships & Dragonwings

Coffee, Cookies, & Chili Peppers

Tethyan Books

Over the Effing Rainbow

Book Vulture

Lunar Rainbows

Novel Reflection

Doing Dewey

Lynn’s Book Blog

4 thoughts on “The Way of Kings Read Along Part IX”

  1. This whole thing with Sadeas, first I deeply disliked him – even when the vision said to trust him, then I started thinking, okay, he’s a bit of a so and so but I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt and now this! I’m completely torn. One part of me just wants to think he’s moving to a different battle position, the other thinks he’s betraying Dalinar – I’m sure we had a discussion at the start about him being trustworthy and almost suspecting him of betraying Gavilar – he was a decoy. I still want to trust him – because of the vision – but, part of me really can’t do so. Perhaps the vision just told Dalinar to trust Sadeas so that he would be in this position for some reason!
    Lynn 😀
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  2. That’s an interesting idea, about the symbol heads being attracted to movers & shakers. On another idea, I was wondering if they’re everywhere that’s of note, and only just a few people can see them.

    If Navani is just being manipulative, she totally has me fooled. I like her, and I hope Dalinar gets over his feeling that their love is improper.

    And I’m also expecting the desecration of the dead to raise the stakes in the war.

    Adolin’s friends seemed pretty vapid… but he kind of did too, when he was with them. He seemed to spend a lot of time in his thoughts being really pettily judgmental towards them, especially his one friend’s girlfriend.

    Maybe Gaz escaped? He knows he’s just a step above bridgemen, so running away might not be a bad plan. The lighteyes wouldn’t want that spread around, probably.

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  3. Interesting idea that the Symbolheads might be recording history. I wonder if they are attracted to certain people who have certain powers (such as the power to see them). I also wonder if (one of) the points of the visions is to show that recorded history is shockingly incorrect. I love those Syl lines! So great. Interesting question about Gaz as well. I still kind of thing that Brightness lady is just all kinds of evil. Guess we’ll find out, though. 😀
    My WoK Post

  4. haha! ‘fellow Artifabrians’ Sweet.

    Kaladin+Syl are always my favorite bits of all. I adore those two and how they’ve grown since chapter 1! Followed closely by Dalinar and his visions; I was so psyched when Navani recognized a language in the ‘gibberish’ he speaks during those visions!

    Like you, I’m still not 100% sure of Navani’s intentions, or how much I actually trust her but so far she seems genuine. I like her strong personality and the effect she’s having on Dalinar. I hope she’ll continue to be good for him XD

    You mentioned the bit about how Kaladin risks enraging (not to mention alienating) the Parshendi further with his idea of using their armor as their own. The whole thing was so innovative on the one hand but when you think about it from the Parshendi standpoint, it’s HUGE. When you factor in how Dalinar wondered that the ‘unite them’ message from his visions could have meant ‘unite all of mankind’? Eep.

    PS- I LOVE your theory about Moash’s revenge being about King Elhokar – that would be epic!

    Here’s my post this week:

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