Kushiel’s Scion Part VI

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, I am your host. We’re covering the Chapters 45-52, so be prepared for spoilers below!

1) Imriel spends a night on the island of Asclepius. Do you agree with Imriel that his nature is to be cruel? Do you think of Imriel as a stunted tree reaching for the light?

I think he’s looking at one aspect of his life and seeing it accentuated above his other traits. He has the capacity to be cruel, yes, but he is usually striving to balance it out. So, no, I don’t see him as a stunted tree reaching for the light – I see him as a tree basking in the little light he has been given and making it count.

2) Imriel makes a good go of breaking things off with Claudia. However, throughout this section we have seen how the spark between them is not yet doused. What do you think of Imriel’s lingering desires? Is Claudia telling the truth about her own desires?

I doubt the spark between them only resides in Imriel. So, yes, I do believe Claudia has a desire for Imriel. After all, D’Angelines are known for their prowess and attention to detail in bed. My guess is that she may have had one or two other excellent lovers in her life, and even then, Imriel is probably the best of them all. As for Imriel… well, she’s the only woman he has bedded in Tiberium, so she is familiar. And she’s always up for it. He doesn’t have to romance her. Quite frankly, it’s easy to attain sex. Now, I do believe that their coupling in Luca after Gilot’s death was for comfort.

With that said, I think Claudia is well aware that if she can entice Imriel back to the Guild, or even somehow trap him into being beholden to the Guild, it would be a feather in her cap and would help her rise in the Guild ranks.

3) Imriel reveals his full identity to Lucius and he learns of the legend of the Bella Donna, based on his own mother. Clever, intentional legend building by Melisande, or a fanciful story that built up over time or was borrowed from another legend?

I think this was Melisande that started it. She probably borrowed the basis from some legend and built some of her specifics (like her looks) into it. I bet this made it easier for her to escape. If folks believe that her child was stolen, they would be more likely to assist her. Also, building that legend and now having young ladies pray to the Bella Donna might be useful for something even today. It’s definitely awkward for Imriel.

This reminded me on the La Llorona legend here in the Southwest US. A woman in white who lost her children wanders the river’s edge weeping. Some legends say she drowned them and her ghost is doomed to haunt the river for eternity. Some say she lost her children to a flood.

4) All is not well at the city of Luca. Helena has been kidnapped. The ghosts of the dead walk among the living. Lucius is possessed by his warlord ancestor Gallus Thaddeus. What do you think of this harsh man/ghost?

Gallus definitely harkens back to an older time, doesn’t he?  He’s a harsh, harsh man but he might just be what Luca needs right now to get through this. On one hand, he’s got everyone on food rations right away, he puts every able bodied person to work (nobles on night patrol, women with bows) no matter their station or what is considered proper.

But then there’s the other side – like when he was ready to forcibly marry Helena to first deny her ‘husband’ his legal rights to the city and then simply to cuckold the man. Ugh! So glad that so many were willing to go against him on that one, even if they had to be sneaky and hide behind rules to do it.

5) When Imri and crew return to the Thaddeus Villa with the injured Gilot, Imriel ponders the wonder of women. ‘The courage of women is different than the courage of men.’ Do you agree?

No. It’s situational. Brigitta and Eamonn both come from ‘warrior’ cultures where women are expected to be competent with at least one weapon if not three. So I think Brigitta’s courage is much like Eamonn’s (though he’s been in at least one battle before so he has a little more experience).

However, in most if not all of Caerdicca Unitas, the roles of women are very different than the roles of men. They aren’t expected to handle weapons, to go to battle. They are expected to be at home, tending to the household, perhaps helping a little with a home business, have babies, and be beautiful and charming at dinner parties. So, for most Caerdicca Unitas women, yes, their courage is different from that of their male counterparts.

6) With the city under siege, an older mystery pops up with the arrival of Canis. Why do you think Imriel held his tongue and only told Eamonn?

I know Imriel is more comfortable being straight with people, but I think he is learning that you don’t have to lie to conceal a truth – you just have to shut up sometimes and not blurt things out. So, I think he finally learned that (thanks to Claudia and her handiwork at the theater) and he wants to know more about Canis in general and specifically why he so obviously followed him to Luca and then dared the army to break into a town under siege.

Other Tidbts:

I’m glad Eamonn and Brigitta appear to be a couple for now. Like two sleeping hunting cats, I think that’s how Imri described them as they slept on a sofa.

Claudia’s insulting Phedre was childish and peevish. I think she totally underestimates Phedre and what she would do if her son Imri went missing or turned up dead, or even badly maimed.

Caerdicci Unitas as a whole doesn’t seem very homosexual friendly and I am glad that Carey built this aspect into the storyline. Ignoring it would be unrealistic. Instead, by building it in and showing both the cultural aspect and how that affects individuals, it really humanizes the situation.

Even though I knew it was coming, I still sniffled over Gilot’s death. It was so hard on Imri and he has to survive this siege and tell Gilot’s girlfriend and kid, and then tell it to Montreve’s household and Phedre and Joscelin. It was very nice that Imriel had him model for the painter before they headed off to Luca.

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).

Kushiel’s Scion Part V

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, Lynn at Lynn’s Book Blog is our host. We’re covering the Chapters 37-44, so be prepared for spoilers below! Sorry again for posting late. Pneumonia is still kicking my butt.

1. Firstly, what do you make of The Guild and why do you think Anafiel declined to join them?  Do you think Imriel should join them?

I think it would be awesome to be one of the controlling heads of the Guild to have access to all that info and power. Or, at least, to be a powerful someone who can trade with the Guild for info and influence.

I think Anafiel rarely did anything rashly, so if he said no to the Guild, then he had good reason. In fact, he may have been approached more than once by them to either join their ranks or ally with them on some matter. I am guessing he repeatedly turned them down. Obviously, you never get to see the whole goat before you buy in this case – you join the Guild at your own peril, knowing that there is probably more than they initially present.

I don’t think Imriel should join them. It’s good that he knows they are there and perhaps in the future he can use that knowledge in some bargaining. However, I don’t think he’s particularly suited to be a spy (he really does like straight forward people and he is pretty much a straight forward guy as well) so it would mostly be about trading favors if he joined the guild – they would give his some info and he would back a certain trade deal, or some such.

2. We have the philosophical debates – how do you think these are going to play a part in the story overall, if at all?

In general, I think they are reinforcing to Imriel that he is indeed a moral person and also they are helping him fine tune his moral compass. I can’t recall if they play any larger role than that. Imri has already lived through events that would make many adults question morality. Now that he is an adult, perhaps he is ready to look more closely at those events with this in mind, based on the philosophical debates he and his friends have been a part of.

3. Claudia – what do you make of her.  Do you trust her?

Obviously, I don’t trust Claudia. She has a few loyalties that reside higher on the list than Imriel – her family, husband, and the Guild (tho I don’t know which comes first). So, there’s always the possibility that one or more of her loyalties will require her to do something that could harm Imriel in some way – perhaps just a little broken heart, perhaps a sullied reputation, perhaps a slit throat.

4. We have lots of possible attempts on Imri’s life, even going so far as to start a student riot – and his own attempts to bring these to a stop.  What do you make to all of it?

With the Guild in play, it can all be rather muddy. Looks like we have Trevalion making a mess of things. I am glad to see that Imriel went with a solution that requires a little more subtlety than his initial blunt force trauma inclination. I think it was brave and very calculated to go to the home turf of the hired assassin and basically buy out the hit on his life. Imri’s got big brass balls, that’s for sure.

I don’t think the student riot was started to cover up an attempt on Imri’s life but I do think more than one person was out there looking for an opportunity to take him down.

5. Two particular characters that I find intriguing are Canis and Piero.  What were your first impressions and how do they differ now?

My opinion of Master Piero hasn’t changed much. He’s a philosopher and a teacher. I like that he points out that for raw teaching an institution isn’t needed and then he lets his students argue the pros and cons of having educational institutions. He was chasing pigeons when we first met him and now he’s trying to coral students and get them to behave like civilized people. I wish him luck.

Canis is the one that has me most intrigued. When I first read this book, I at first dismissed him and his ramblings. But then when Imri kept wearing the pendant and then later Imri thinks he sees Canis on some corner, I started to ponder. Now Imri thinks someone else had his back in the student riot and Canis goes missing for a few days to returned clean and bruised. Hmmm…. the plot thickens!

Other Tidbts:

If someone held a knife to my throat as part of love play (without my permission) I would have a hard time jumping into bed with them again… and yet Imri does just this. Perhaps he feels he has something to prove.

I thought Eamonn’s example of why the winners of a battle or a war are also affected negatively by the whole event. And I also agree with Lucius that you can’t really separate the noble reason for an invasion from the means. It’s interesting to see Brigitta deal with all these arguments.

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).

Kushiel’s Scion Part IV

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, Lisa at Over the Effing Rainbow is our host. We’re covering the Chapters 28-36, so be prepared for spoilers below! Sorry for getting this up late – was in hospital for pneumonia for nearly a week.

1. The aftermath of Imriel’s night at Valerian House takes a bit of a dark emotional turn… What did you think of what happens between him and Phedre? Did it surprise you at all?

I think Carey did a little foreshadowing about this when Mavros and Roshana came for their summer visit to Montreve. Imri is Kushiel’s Scion (tho he doesn’t really grasp that yet) and Phedre is Kushiel’s Chosen. They aren’t blood related. She’s likes a good whipping and he has these dark desires to whip someone for sexual pleasure that he’s still wrestling with. I think sooner or later this had to be acknowledged between them and it couldn’t really be acknowledged until Imri had had an experience such as he did at Valerian House.

Of course, Phedre loves him first and foremost as a son and nothing is ever going to come of it. I do think it took some thinking for Imri to realize that, but once he did, things were well between him and Phedre again.

2. We go from this scene to Imriel’s decision to leave Terre D’Ange and visit Tiberium, and he doesn’t waste much time arranging the trip – though he does make time to say some goodbyes, and to confront Barquiel L’Envers. Any thoughts about this encounter – or his meeting with Sidonie?

Barquiel makes me laugh once again – ‘I like your hair’ (totally paraphrasing). Everything is a kind of chess game with Barquiel. I think he has more respect for Imri now that Imri thwarted (mostly) his attempt to smear his name with treason and also got his fired (albeit quietly). Imri didn’t give into to a young man’s fury to demand a duel either.

So no sex as a goodbye for him and Sidonie. So sad. But maybe for the best. While young men often have stamina, they lack finesse. Besides, if they had entangled their limbs, it would have had to be a quickie due to the guards starting to wonder what was up. Also, I doubt Imriel would have been so quick to jump into bed with Claudia in Tiberium if he had recently bedded Sidonie. As it was, it was a tangle of complicated emotions for both of them.

3. Next stop is Tiberium, and Imriel quickly catches up with Eamonn! What do you think of the University setting, and Eamonn’s taste for studying philosophy? Do you think it will help Imri in any way?

The University setting is wonderfully eccentric and full of conflicting notions on how to teaching and just what teaching is. I don’t have to like every aspect of it to like the setting.

Eamonn picked a most interesting teacher and I think it is a good choice. He teaches his students to think, not simply what to think. I like that the teacher doesn’t have all the answers and he knows it.

Already, I think the entire experience is helping Imri. He’s experiencing life without everyone knowing who he is and without having to search for double meanings in every conversation. I think the teacher’s lectures and group conversations are already showing Imri how to think in new directions.

4. An old mystery deepens as Imriel searches for information on Anafiel Delaunay – and appears to find more than he bargained for… What did you make of Claudia Fulvia?

Claudia definitely enjoyed the romp, no doubt about that. Imri was a bit of a fool to so easily let his guard down and I am sure he will beat himself up about that more later.

I honestly don’t recall how much Claudia knows about covertcy or about Delaunay. Obviously, she knew just how to disarm and relax Imriel, but I don’t think that would take too much talent in these circumstances. Of course, now we have to always ask ourselves how much is she lying or withholding from Imriel.

Other Tidbts:

Imriel’s name means the Eloquence of God, according to Phedre, which I think is quite beautiful.

I liked that Joscelin was solid and understanding about Imriel’s need to go off to college. I was a bit surprised that Ysandre didn’t send a few men at arms (even in disguise) to watch over him.

What I wouldn’t give for a good garum!

I was surprised that the inns and ale houses/wine shops serve little to no food and that walking the street is your best way to find dinner.

Brigitta seems very proud of her heritage (nothing wrong with that) but she’s a bit prickly when it comes to others being proud of their heritage and also of how events fell out a generation ago.

Cannis and his beggar’s wisdom.

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).

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).

Kushiel’s Scion Part II

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, Allie at Tethyan Books is our host. We’re covering the Chapters 12-19, so be prepared for spoilers below! Sorry for getting this up late – was in hospital for pneumonia for nearly a week.

1) In this chapter, Katherine and Roshana introduce Imriel to some innocent regional courtship games.  What do you think of the differences between the two games?  Do you remember anything similar from when you were a teen?

I think both were pretty innocent, yet I can see why one scares Imri more than the other. he’s dealing with his triggers and figuring out what he can and can’t deal with right now. I do wish they had started with Katherine’s version and once Imri got a few kisses in, moved on to Roshana’s version. Perhaps that would have made it less scary for Imri.

The closest thing I had as a teen was spin the bottle. Yep. Pretty tame and boring. But at the time, it was bold and awesome.

2) How do you think Imriel’s ideas of love and sex are affected by the model set by Joscelin and Phedre? Do you think they’re doing a good job getting him through these awkward years?

I think it’s both good and confusing for him. On one hand, he saw what Phedre was like in Darsanga and how her body responded, willing or no, acting or no, to the Marhkagir. So, he’s seen this darker side to her passions. But then he has had 3-4 years of living with them and seeing their loving, monogamous relationship. I’m sure he hasn’t heard or seen any violent lovemaking between the two. Now that he’s coming into his own, I am sure he feels conflicted – be like the tame, deeply loving Joscelin, or like the loving on the edge Phedre?

And yes, I think Phedre and Joscelin are doing a great job of raising Imri. It’s a total balancing act, giving him enough space to figure out these personal likes/dislikes and also keeping him safe, and providing honest answers, and guidance.

3) Imriel is getting a lot happier and easier at court these days.  Is there anything that was particularly notable for you in this period, during the apple-picking party or on the Longest Night?

I really like that Imri takes a big brother’s interest in Alise, trying to include her in activities like the apple-picking contest. Then there is Mavros having his back at court in the Hall of Games; that was unexpected and cool of him. Imri is still learning what to do with his anger (that I think nearly all of us experience in our teen years) and it’s great that Joscelin lets him get that anger out during sword practice.

4) Imriel comes of age in this section, and spends his first night in the Night Court, at Balm House. What do you think about his experience with Emmeline?

Sacred. Loving. Healing.

This night with Emmeline did a world of good for Imri. It showed him that he can participate in sex in a loving way and that his fears of a darker, more violent sexual side is either not there or can easily be held in check.

5) Imriel has also made a new close friend, Eamonn mac Grainne!  What did you think of their fight?  How do you think their closeness will affect his image at court?

This is a great friendship because the two are so far removed from each other’s worlds that they can confide in each other without the preconceived notions. Imri’s heard some stories about Eamonn’s family and Eamonn has heard some stories about Imri’s family, but they don’t know the characters by sight and the folks around them don’t have these stagnant opinions of their forebears.

I think Imri has realized that some at court believe they are lovers and he’s taken a healthy attitude of ‘So what!’. His friendship with Eamonn means more to him than what others think of it.

Other Tidbts:

When Imri confided in Eamonn concerning the Marhkagir, I wanted to applaud his bravery. After hearing the story, I wanted to kill the Marhkagir all over again.

I think it’s great that Phedre and Imri can, on occasion, joke a little about their first few meetings in Darsanga.

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).

Kushiel’s Scion Part I

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, I am your host. We’re covering the Prologue-Chapter 11, so be prepared for spoilers below!

1) Through out this section, we relearn the events of the first trilogy through Imriel’s eyes. What do you think of his perceptions of those events?

I’m pleasantly surprised that he doesn’t have more ire towards certain folks, like his mother, Barquiel, the Queen. He has reasons to dislike (even hate Melisande or Barquiel), but he maintains a wariness instead of spite.

I also like that he admits to himself when he doesn’t understand something, like Phedre’s ‘protection’ of Melisande and her adherence to the promise she made so many years ago.

2) What do you think is in Melisande’s letters? How did she escape and who do you think assisted her this time?

Melisande’s letters…  yes. So, she wrote them to Imriel but she also must have known that others might potentially read them. Maybe she tries to explain why she did what she did. Maybe it’s poetry. I don’t really see her being the cuddly wuddly type.

Once again, she escapes. I don’t know how. I can’t recall if we ever learn how or who assisted her. She’s so far removed from the D’Angeline court, she simply could have charmed some of the staff of the temple. I think that would be the easiest thing for her. However, she would want a safe, secure place to head to. That makes me think of the Pharaoh. But I could be totally off on that.

3) What do think about how Imriel handled Maslin of Lombelon? Has he made an ally or a foe for the future?

Such a tough situation! I can totally see why Imri wants to do the right thing, but his version of the right thing and Maslin’s version of the right thing are probably a little different. Still, in the end, when Imri was candid with Maslin, I think they had an understanding, even if they never like each other. I don’t think  Maslin is a foe or ally at this point.

4) There’s a few moments of foreshadowing in this section: Elua’s priest’s words concerning finding and losing love over and over again; Alais’s dream concerning a man with two faces. Are you intrigued or just happy to zoom along at this point?

Honestly, I’ve never been much into foreshadowing and I tend to simply make note of it and keep zooming along. The author already knows where things are going, but I don’t. So I rather spend time reading the story than ruminating over the foreshadowy bits. Sometimes they add a nice touch here and there, where the character can look back and review the warnings.

5) Imriel’s Shahrizai cousins (Mavros, Roshana, Baptiste) have come to visit for a summer. What are your impressions so far?

They are being very, very polite. I am guessing they were hand picked for the visit to make as good an impression as possible. And there might be some politics behind that. I mean Imri is 3rd in line for the crown, he hangs out with a renowned courtesan (and Queen’s confidante) and the Queen’s champion. So, making sure the Shahrizai aren’t complete outcasts is probably important to the whole clan of them.

Baptiste still seems young and bit silly. It seems Roshana and Mavros are the planners and perhaps schemers. Still, so far they seem to want to help Imri understand this side of his family and aren’t up to anything evil.

Other Tidbts:

Pear brandy! That’s what I want!

That all night vigil left Imri with the worst cold ever, maybe pneumonia. That would have sucked for him to die from that. The political ramifications would have been interesting.

Alais’s sword play with Imri was quite cute. Too bad her sister didn’t see it that way.

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).

Kushiel’s Scion Read Along – The Schedule

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! Below is a schedule.

Here is the current schedule:

Week 1: Prologue-chpt. 11, post on Sunday Jan 3rd, hosted by Dab of Darkness
Week 2: Chpts. 12-19, Jan 10th, hosted by Tethyan Books
Week 3: Chpts. 20-27, Jan 17th, hosted by Emma Wolf
Week 4: Chpts. 28-36, Jan  24th, hosted by Over the Effing Rainbow
Week 5: Chpts. 37-44, Jan 31st, hosted by Lynn’s Book Blog
Week 6: Chpts. 45-52, Feb 7th, hosted by Dab of Darkness
Week 7: Chpts. 53-60,  Feb 14th, hosted by Tethyan Books
Week 8: Chpt. 61-End, Feb 21st, hosted by Emma Wolf

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

As always, folks are welcome to jump in and join us. You don’t have to be a host or a blogger. You can always choose the easy route and tackle the weekly discussion in the comments of the hosting blog. 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).