Sunday, January 25, 2015

A Memory of Light Read-Along, Week 2

Welcome to week 2 of our A Memory of Light Read-Along! This week we read Chapters 2-7. Remember that everything in this section as well as everything that's come before is fair game for spoilers, so read at your own risk. Sue over at Coffee, Cookies & Chili Peppers is hosting this week.

1. Pevara and Androl has done some mutual Bonding, which seems to have created a rather uniquely intimate link between the two. Do you think that the other Aes Sedai / Asha’man pairs could create something similar, or do we have an example of mushy, romantic specialness in this case? Have you been surprised by the Red’s ability to work with male Channelers, or do you think that she is unusual for her Ajah?

I loved that they did this totally by accident, and they fight like an old married couple. 
"You bonded me?" she said, horrified.He groaned, rolling over. "You did it to me first."

If they can do this, I think others can, and inevitably will. I actually think this is really cool and will end up being a strength, rather than a weakness, even though they both seem very uncomfortable with it right now.

I do think Pevara is unusual for a Red, but I think others could be like her, once they are made to become a little more open-minded. If she wasn't trapped and besieged by enemies, she would probably never have even thought of working so closely with Androl, but now that she has, I think only good things can come of it.

Rand & Aviendha (Source)
2. I was beginning to worry that Aviendha’s quadruplets would need to be the product of some sort of bizarre ‘virgin’ birth scenario, but now there is at least a biological chance that they could be created in the normal way! Yay! Do you really think that it was necessary for her to use sexytimes as a way to persuade Rand to grant her a boon? Were you disappointed or relieved not to have more details of what was obviously a rather extended night of baby-making?

I don't know about necessary, but I think it was important that they re-establish their relationship. They hadn't spent any time together in a while and it had started to feel almost formal. Now they're back to being giggly and comfortable, and that's just better all around.

I don't think more detailed sexytimes were needed, simply because we got the details before, the first time. Not that it couldn't have been sweet, but it would almost have been redundant at this point. What was there was just enough to be kind of perfect, in my opinion. And good luck to Aviendha. Apparently she's going to have to save her people while raising quadruplets. :D

Androl (Source)
3. Apparently, being Turned to the Dark Side does not improve your intellect very much. Do you think that we will ever see a truly intelligent Darkfriend? Did the sequence with Dobser make you more hopeful of Androl and his party surviving against Taim’s attack?

Nope. Evil is inherently--even scientifically--weaker than good. If you want to talk physics, people like this actually vibrate at a lower frequency than good, honest people. Which is why the bad guy always eventually lose. People like this can't help their stupidity. Once they've made the choice to go bad, they've also made the choice to be stupid. 

Androl and his group definitely have a good chance of surviving. They're up against steep odds, yes, but they're smarter, more loyal, and more resourceful than their enemies. If you ask me, Androl and Pevara might just be the Dream Team. :D Let's hope they get married after!

4. Rand is beginning to manifest some startling new powers and can now manipulate the Dream more successfully than Moridin. Do you think this will cause the Nae’blis to alter his plans and be more aggressive in his pursuit of Rand? It seems that Lanfear is managing to somehow slip away from his control via the mindtrap: or was that all staged for Rand’s benefit?

The dream thing was really interesting, but left him drained. The one that arched my eyebrow higher was when Perrin said he left the pavilion at Merrilor and simply vanished. No gateway or anything. Whoa. Who knows what Moridin will do? You can tell he's afraid. He knows he's losing control of things, and Rand is gaining an edge over him. Still, he was belligerent and...I guess we can go back to that bad-guys-are-stupid issue from #3. He's not even bright enough to cut his losses and flee to the winning side in the eleventh hour. Whatever he does, I doubt it will ensure him the immortality he wants. Rand hit it on the head when he pointed out that Moridin's reason for wanting the DO to win have changed. It's as much because he hates himself as because he's actually loyal to the DO.

I won't say much about Lanfear except that we'll probably see her again, and soon.

Moiraine returns! (Source)
5. And, yay verily, there will be much politicking and arguing and then Moiraine will appear and quote the Prophecy, thus creating peace and harmony amongst the leaders of the World. Did anyone else expect her to wink at Perrin in a conspiratorial way as she walked past him? Do you think that the new and improved Dragon’s Peace will hold and also stop the future we saw in Aviendha’s visions? Who do you think Rand expected Roedran to be?

Yeah, that was pretty much the awesomest thing ever! I especially liked that Nynaeve hugged her (and cried!). Mat wasn't there, but we already know he had his reunion with her. It's like they're all good, old friends, sharing a private joke. I love that! I love that Moiraine is as wise and mysterious as ever. One of the first things we saw from her was her telling the history of Manetheren to the people of Two Rivers in book 1. She told it with flair and a drama that Thom Merrilin probably envied. I think this scene was a mirror to that one. She's quoting the prophecies, calming a group of people on the verge of hysteria, and guiding Rand whether he wants her to or not. 

Having the Aiel as mediators and enforcers is an inspired idea. I think it's the perfect solution to what Aviendha saw. They were ignored before and left out, and that seems to be what led to their downfall. That's not happening now, so the future she saw is already null and void in my opinion. I did enjoy all the Wise Ones coming up behind Aviendha and ganging up on Rand with indignance. Poor guy. I had to chuckle at the mental image.

I'm not sure who Rand thought Roedran to be, but I would assume either Taim or Demandred. He got close, though, and realized he was wrong.

Ogier with great trees (Source)
6. Great Trees and a singing Ogier army, then Gateways bringing aid to Lan’s final charge. Discuss, with specific dimensions for the size of your grin and/or the number of tears shed! :D

Right? I seriously cry through this entire book! I loved that the Ogier showed up. I cheered to see Loial again--a married man, no less. :D I loved that Elder Haman said it was almost worth fighting just to see the Great trees. I loved the point Loial's mother made about how the argument had to have opposition to prove itself. 
"...trees grow roots most strongly when winds blow through them..." (pg. 195)

And who's not excited to see the Ogier kick some serious shadowspawn butt with their wicked axes?

I loved Lan speaking the Malkieri oath in his heart, and hearing his father's voice over his cradle. I can totally see that the way it would be portrayed in a movie.

Despite the cover of book 1, we FINALLY got to see
him wearing a helmet! :D (Source)
I loved his inspiring speech about not doing the self-pity thing:
"Is this not what we have trained for...Is this not our purpose, our very lives? This war is not a thing to mourn. Other men have been lax, but we have not been. We are prepared, and so this is a time of glory. Let there be laughter! Let there be joy! Let us cheer the fallen and drink to our forefathers, who taught us well. If you die on the morrow, awaiting your rebirth, be proud. The Last Battle is upon us, and we are ready!" (pgs. 199-200)

Yup, totally wiping away the tears. Just pure amazingness.

7. Mat is off in Ebou Dar doing something mysterious. Can we hope that he is trying to talk some sense into Tuon? Will he accept the Horn from Faile or run away screaming?

Not going to say much here, but don't worry. It'll be awesome! You know Mat never fails to entertain. Or deliver. :D As for Faile and the horn, I'm so excited. *Rubs hands together* It's gonna be great!

Elayne and Aviendha (Source)

Something must be said for the hilarity of Aviendha sneaking into Elaynes camp and then patiently filing her fingernails until someone noticed. Along with Elayne's...interesting curse. 
"...Aviendha, what in the name of a bloody goat's left stone are you doing!"

Yeah, laughed for ten minutes. My dad and I still sometimes bring up this particular curse in random conversations. :D

What other bloggers thought:     Dab of Darkness     Coffee, Cookies & Chili Peppers

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  1. That's an interesting theory about evil vibrating at a lower frequency. What if someone only does evil deeds on occasion? Or just when they are intoxicated? Something interesting to ponder.

    Aviendha being backed by all the Wise Ones present was great. Who wants to argue with all of them? No one with wits in their head.

    Lan's speech was awesome. It's not your typical 'We're going to kick butt and go home as heroes' speech either.

    Knowing goats, and having been around billy goats, I can say that a goat's left stone is pretty rank.

  2. 1. Pevara and Silviana give me hope for the Reds. I think that we have been badly prejudiced by Elaida and Liandrin and the knowledge that so many of the Ajah are actually Black. Hopefully there are plenty of more sensible individuals to rebuild it with a new agenda.

    2. I feel like a session of detailed sexytimes would have felt out of place at this point when we know that we are hurtling towards the Last Battle. Yeah: she is going to need an army of helpers to change all those diapers! :D

    3. Well, if there is scientific evidence, then I’m convinced! :D

    4. I also get the feeling that Moridin is starting to feel frazzled – hopefully he will make some important mistakes. I am SOOOO looking forward to Lanfear’s return . . . NOT! :D

    5. Now that you mention it, there is a certain touch of Gleeman in Moiraine’s character: perhaps that is what draws her to Thom. Rand’s reason for ignoring them is understandable, but this new role is an extension of their current actions, so it makes a lot of sense. Poor Rand, who would think it would be so insulting to trust people to do what you ask?

    6. This was certainly better than Rand finding a note from Loial saying “Sorry, we’ve decided to leave you and go to an alternative universe: good luck defeating Ultimate Evil!”

    7. I rather hope that Faile does not get to blow the Horn: she has lost a lot of my favor over the last few books with her petty bickering, so I am not sure that she is worthy of the honor! :D


    Yeah, what is it about the LEFT stone?? :D

    1. LOL. Yeah, is left better or worse than right? And do we want to know? :D Thanks Sue!