Sunday, July 28, 2013

The Shadow Rising Read-Along, Week 9



Lanfear--Run for  your life!
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1. It seems to me that the evidence is mounting that Keille is definitely Lanfear. How long do you think she will endure Isendre’s incessant flirting with Rand and rudeness to ‘Keille’ herself? What revenge do you think Isendre will suffer?

Lanfear strikes me as a boiling bottle waiting to explode. So my guess is: not for long. Being one of the Forsaken--one of the most evil people ever and very powerful with the One Power, her revenge will probably be cringe-worthy.


Rand and Aviendha-
Arent' they cute?
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2. Rand’s relationship with Aviendha has softened somewhat, although he did not intend to give a gift to attract her ‘interest’. Do you think that his dream of her, Elayne and Min means that he has found his trio of wives? If so, what do you think of Aviendha standing on the bank whilst the other two women swim naked with him?

Yes, it is likely. I think it means that, while Elayne and Min know they love him, Aviendha is not sure yet. They were beckoning him to them, while she stood on the shore, gazing at him, as though she wasn't yet sure how she felt. Given the awkwardness between she and Rand, I think it's safe to say she'll figure it out sooner or later.

Here's one rendering of Sevanna.
Does she look like she's gonna be cool?
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3. Rand’s life seems to get more complicated with each chapter. We now learn that Sevanna, the wife of the dead Shaido Clan Chief is a troublemaker: is this a surprise? Also, any guesses as to who is sending the Shadowspawn against him?

No, Sevanna being a troublemaker isn't a surprise. If there's one--Couladin--there are bound to be a few others. 

Well, if Lanfear is amongst the peddlers, they might be the ones sending the Shadowspawn. And Brigitte told Nynaeve that Asmodean was also hanging around the waste--Nynaeve saw him once before, but just didn't know who he was at the time. With possibly two Forsaken hanging around, it's amazing worse than Shadowspawn hasn't shown up.

Egeanin
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4. Now that Egeanin has been ‘outed’ as a Seanchan, are you surprised by how Elayne and Nynaeve chose to handle the situation? Do you think they are being wise or foolish?

I don't think they're particularly being either wise or foolish. I think they're wise to be cautious of her. Who wouldn't be? But I also think writing her off as a complete enemy, as Nynaeve is trying to so hard to do would be foolish. If she wanted to collar them, she had plenty of chance, which gives credence to her statement about liking them and wanting to learn more. They would be foolish not to use what she can tell them and help them with.

Moghedien
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5. We now know, courtesy of Birgitte, that the dark-haired woman in Tanchico is Moghedien, sometimes known as the Spider. Any ideas why she has not simply pointed out the ter’angreal in the Panarch’s Palace to the Black Ajah or taken it for herself? How many years of suffering do you think Nynaeve will inflict upon her now that she remembers being Compelled?

She must have a reason that she doesn't want the Black Ajah to have it, or she would have given it to them by now. She probably has an agenda, but it's hard to say what it is. Of course, as a Spider who moves in the shadows, she might not ever do anything so forward as give it to someone. Rather, she might try to influence events from afar. Makes you wonder who she intends it for. I think Nynaeve will inflict as many years as she possibly can. :D Maybe Lan can make her finally stop. ;D 

Perrin, Faile and Loial
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6. Loial has returned safe: hooray! Is there even the tiniest chance that anyone believes Lord Luc rather than our favorite Ogier and Gaul about the number of Trollocs in the area? Any suggestions of why Luc would like Perrin to underestimate the enemy’s numbers?

Obviously Loial and Gaul are the reliable ones. It was so great to see Loial being all strong and chivalrous. The dude can outrun trollocs while carrying a grown man on his back for heaven's sake! Gotta love Loial!

 This has actually been a pattern for Lord Luc, though it was more subtle before now. He was always telling the people what a good job they were doing and how everything would be fine and they shouldn't worry. It wasn't until Perrin showed up and told them to get prepared that they actually got things well in hand. This suggests that Luc wants power. He also wants to give the people false security. hard to say exactly why at this point, but it can't be good.

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7. It would seem that Luc is Slayer. However, he looks different in the Wolf Dream, where he closely resembles Lan. Any guesses as to why he has two different appearances, and why they are both so similar to important members of the fight against the Dark One?

The answer is most obvious in the dark prophecy written on the wall of Fal Dara in book 2, when Padan Fain escaped and Mat and Egwene got knocked silly. To fully understand, everyone should also review Lord Agelmar's tale of the downfall of Malkier at the end of book 1 and, more recently, the part where the Wise Ones tell Rand about his real parents. However, we'll get an important name very soon, now, so maybe wait until after the final section before doing this. We can have a more detailed discussion next week. :D

Extras:

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Lord Perrin and Lady Faile
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Perrin and Faile got married! Yea! I loved the way this was done. I loved that Faile asked directly for what she wanted, and that Perrin didn't have a guy/commitment meltdown or anything. I know only certain kinds of guys have them, but I thought it was really refreshing, considering that both Mat and Rand have been quite resistant to real, deep romance.


Gaul, Chiad, Bain
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And then there's Chiad and Gaul. I totally love romances like this one, even though they aren't front and center. You totally don't suspect or even pay attention to the relationship, and then when it's revealed, you look back over everything and do a very girl, "Awwww!" J.K.Rowling did something similar with Remus and Tonks. Love this sort of thing!

I also loved the stare-down (almost was a smack down!) between Nynaeve and the Wise Ones. Nynaeve using need to help her was also cool. We'll see this used again later on.

How did everyone else like this section?

4 comments :

  1. Oh, my apologies. I went and pulled the plug on number 7 already. I didn't remember the important name bit. :s

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  2. Ha! Of course Rand needs TWO forsaken in the desert with him. I don't think Lanfear would send Shadowspawn after him - because she wants his ....personal equipment. Whereas, another Forsaken might not have any objection to taking Rand's head.

    Yes, Gaul and Chiad. I have been waiting for that to blossom into something real and I am glad it finally has.

    Ha! Yes, Nynaeve staring down the Wise Ones. I have to wonder why she didn't get sent to the Aiel Waste by the Wheel as she could totally go toe-to-toe with them. But perhaps that is why - she wouldn't be able to learn anything.

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    1. I think Chiad will have the same attitude as Grace Jones in your video clip and poor Gaul might find himself bashed over the head and dragged off to be ravished! :D

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  3. 1. She seems to be like a pressure cooker going at full steam - all sizzling and very dangerous!

    2. I am constantly amazed that I can actually accept the dynamics of their relationships. Normally I would be very suspicious of polygamy as it seems so patriarchal that polyandry is not part of the system. However, the way Mr Jordan handles his female characters and Rand's innocence makes it all seem so much more acceptable. You have to love a book that makes you reevaluate your moral stance on such things.

    3. What I don't understand is why they would be sending the Shadowspawn against him and yet trying to remain hidden. I have to admit that I have all the tactical intelligence of a day old kitten, so perhaps I should go off and read Tzu Sung or something.

    4. Characters like Egeanin are one of the reasons that I am so caught up with this series - I love not knowing who is going to do what next. I know that I keep banging on about Game of Thrones as a comparison, but the way that Mr Martin has developed characters like Jaime Lannister and The Hound is what keeps me turning those pages.

    5. I do wonder if Moghedien would leave them flailing about forever before she took any action: I can see why she doesn't want to work openly, but she risks a lot by waiting for others to do something that she can take advantage of.

    6. Loial is one of my favorite characters ever because he is such a truly good person and sucked along in the wake of all these crazy ta'veren into doing things that he could never have imagined agreeing to do. He is a bit like the 'anti-hulk'. As I said above, I am useless at tactics, which is why I am struggling with Luc's motivations. I understand that he might want to lull the villagers into a false sense of security, but he hasn't really done a good job of destroying them if that is his mission.

    Perrin is such a decent bloke, isn't he? It has been great fun following his romance with Faile because she has totally confused the poor guy for so much of the time and we so rarely see these things written from the man's perspective.

    I also loved the Tonks and Remus relationship and I was very cross with JK when she decided to kill them both! :(

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