Kushiel's Scion Part III

Elderly Waffles has no idea whats going on.
Elderly Waffles has no idea whats going on.

The Terre D’Ange Cycle by Jacqueline Carey (of which Kushiel’s Scion is Book 1 of the second  trilogy) is one of my all time favorite series. The read along continues! Everyone is welcome to join in. Here is the SCHEDULE for the read along.

This week, Emily at Emma Wolf is our host. We’re covering the Chapters 20-27, so be prepared for spoilers below! Sorry for getting this up late – was in hospital for pneumonia for nearly a week.

1) Maslin says that Imriel’s gift of Lombelon made the estate small by so easily discarding it. Eamonn says it was Maslin that made it small. Who do you think is right?

Eamonn’s right about this one. I can see how Imriel’s actions might have given that initial punch to the gut ‘oh my! this is a small gesture to him’ feeling. But Maslin had months (years?) to decide that Lombelon was too small for him and he could have decided otherwise. Still, he is a young man and probably feels he has much to prove. His dad was an excellent swordsman, once a hero of the realm, and then a betrayer of the realm who saved the kingdom despite that. So, yeah, I can see how Maslin felt that living a quiet life managing a pear orchard while sipping pear brandy was too small a life for him.

2) What do you think of Imriel’s oath to Sidonie? Do you believe him? Would you believe him were you in Sidonie’s position? When he makes this oath, Imriel is still fairly young and doesn’t have a lot of experience in politics. Do you think there’s anything that could change his mind?

I think it was made from the heart and on the spur of the moment. It was genuine and Imriel didn’t really have to think about it because he honestly has no intentions to be lord of anything, let alone wear a crown.

I think if I was Sidonie, it would be difficult to accept the oath had I not known Imriel for years at this point. Alise speaks his praises and he’s shown no court ambition whatsoever and rarely comes to court and even then, has to be ordered to by someone of authority half the time anyway.

I think Sidonie would have to turn into quite the monster for Imriel to even consider going back on his oath and that is just really unlikely. Plus, if she did, I think her mom would paddle her ass in front of the entire court.

3) Things change between them during a hunt. What do you think?

They each got to see the other with their court masks down, briefly, and I think that is why they connected. Also, Imri then got his own hands  dirty sewing up Alise’s dog Celeste. Of course that couldn’t fail to touch Sidonie’s heart. I like that Imriel asks Sidonie (much later at the Longest Night?) if they will talk about it. I think, at this point, that Imri is much more willing to acknowledge his emotions on any subject than Sidonie is.

4) Imriel becomes the unwilling target or subject of potentially a treasonous plot. What do you think of Bertran’s reaction? Of Ysandre’s reaction and advice to Imriel?

That was pretty rude of Bertran, especially how he changed some of the facts around when he reported the incident. I think it also shows that perhaps all along he felt that Imriel was fine for drinking and dicing with but that he would never trust him in a position of power.

Unfortunately, Ysandre is right. Barquiel is best handled quietly in house if Imri wants any justice. Barquiel would never admit in public he had a hand in it and trying to force him t do so would probably lead to a duel that Imri would lose, and perhaps lose badly. I am very glad that Ysandre acknowledged how fucked up it all is while also laying out the options and explaining why she strongly recommended the path she did.

Besides, knowing Ysandre, Barquiel probably got a severe tongue lashing in her cold, calculating way, and perhaps some other punishments were laid upon him that Imriel will never hear about.

5) What do you think of Talorcan and Dorelei and the idea of the betrothals?

So far, we know little of them. Drustan, of course, speaks highly of them and I don’t think he would do that just to hurry some betrothals along. As he and Ysandre have said, it’s still up to the kids involved and they won’t force them into it.

I don’t think Alise would mind living in Alba, at least part of the year, and Talorcan seems to be a gentleman, not pushing Alise. But we’ve seen very little of him, so hard to say. If both Alise and Imriel marry Alban royalty, that could solve a lot of political issues, placating the masses of nobles.

6) Mavros takes Imriel to Valerian House and forces him to confront…less vanilla sex, if nothing else, and Imriel eventually gives in. What do you think of this? Was Mavros too pushy? Why did Imriel give Sephira her own signale?

Overall, I think it was a needful and insightful experience for Imriel. I don’t think Mavros was too pushy. After all, he kept telling Imriel he didn’t have to do anything, that everyone abided by Elua’s sacred rules of consent, and love and mutual pleasure was at the core of things. I think Imriel needed to see it before he believed it.

I’m glad that he had such a chat with Sephira and that she was honest with him about why she desired him and how she desired him. At the end, I think Imriel gave the only signale he knew (Sephira’s sunshine) because he needed to be done so that he could have time to process him own emotions. It was a lot of break throughs for him in a short period of time.

Other Tidbts:

I liked Phedre’s comment that she was happy as a teen, but that she was also vain and a silly thing.

I love that Phedre’s household went as Skaldi deities. It shows that old wounds can be set aside, if not healed yet.

It’s very sweet how much Imri misses his Eamonn, who gets to go off to college.

And here is the current list of participators:
Allie at Tethyan Books
Lisa at Over the Effing Rainbow
Lynn at Lynn’s Book Blog
Emily at Emma Wolf
Susan (me) at Dab of Darkness

We also have a Goodreads Group started for SF/F Read Alongs in general, and there is a specific folder for this read along. You are welcome to follow the fun there as well. If you want to be on the weekly email, just leave me a comment or shoot me an email with KUSHIEL’S SCION in the subject (nrlymrtl@gmail.com).

6 thoughts on “Kushiel's Scion Part III”

  1. Maslin has such a lot of anger doesn’t he. He’s actually the one who is be-littling the gift of the estate. Just how much of a gift would have been appropriate for him!
    The day of the hunt was very revealing about Sidonie and Imri’s feelings – it is a very fine line isn’t it!
    Bertran got on my last nerve to be honest – what a double dealing, two timing sod! Rushing to Ysandre to give a false tale – i was so cross.
    Lynn 😀

  2. I think your thoughts on Maslin make a lot of sense. Once he had the pear orchard, he realized that a quiet life managing an orchard was not actually what he wanted. I guess Imriel was just a convenient person to blame for his dissatisfaction.

    I was pretty annoyed by Bertran as well, being so pointlessly suspicious of Imriel and even messing up the facts. I agree that Ysandre’s recommendation was the best way to deal with the situation.

    I also think that Imriel needed to confront those desires, and I don’t think Mavros was too pushy about it. He’s going to have to handle these feelings sooner or later.

    1. Yep. I can’t see Maslin being happy managing an orchard until later in his life. He’s a young man at this point and hasn’t seen much of the world, maybe hasn’t been out of his district? county? that Lombelon resides in.

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