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Messages - Wilshire

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Literature / Re: Yearly Targets 2018
« on: May 21, 2018, 12:43:14 pm »
Leviathan Wakes (Book 1 expanse) by James S A Corey (17)

You know, it started out feeling a bit mediocre but I ended up liking it quite a bit. If anyone has read more of these, could you help me out? Does the series get better from here, and do subsequent novels follow a similar form - some kind of mashup between space opera and detective novel? Consistent timeline/characters or new cast for each?

The Almanac: PON Edition / Re: ARC: TDTCB Chapter 6
« on: May 17, 2018, 07:47:25 pm »
The scylvendi seem to be not so much the people of war as they are the people of Hate. Cnaiur is the best among them, in either case. No one hates like a scylvendi.

Also I love this moment "‘A School, Bala! Conphas has brought a School!’"

BTW, if we're keeping track of random things, " X was not so much Y as it was Z" is a formula that plays out many times throughout.

The Unholy Consult / Re: Another (perhaps) simple question
« on: May 15, 2018, 01:37:13 pm »
Havent read the sequel yet but I definitely will at some point

General Earwa / Re: Mistakes and things that piss off in the series
« on: May 15, 2018, 01:36:11 pm »
I think is. Its part of what makes that line so powerful - in an instant he became the Wizard, a class unto himself.

Literature / Re: Yearly Targets 2018
« on: May 14, 2018, 03:00:45 pm »
The Colour of Magic (Diskworld 1) byTerry Prachett (16)

That was a quick read. Pretty entertaining - very silly and full of joy. I might throw in some more Prachett if I'm looking for something of the sort in the future. Definitely different than my typical fantasy fare but a nice change of pace.

The Almanac: PON Edition / Re: ARC: TDTDCB Chapter 3
« on: May 10, 2018, 01:11:30 pm »
An image of what her daughter might look like came to him: sturdy but fine-boned, dark languid hair chopped low-caste short, a cheek perfectly curved to the cup of a palm. But it was Esmi he actually envisaged. Her as a child.

Confirmation that Akka had never seen Mimara until he met her early in TJE. If I remember correctly, one of them misremembers this at some point.
Also, imagining young Mimara as young Esmenet isn't too far off from the truth. Not that Akka knew this at this point, though.

She had dwindled in the five years since he had last come to Sumna.

Taking note of another timeline reference...there might be an inconsistency here concerning Achamian and Mimara's recollections during TAE (if there is, I'll add that to the inconsistencies/mistakes thread eventually).
There is a moment in TWP where Akka is stumbling through camp and he thinks he sees a young Esmenet. I'm of the opinion that who he actually saw was Mimara.

"The world has the habit" Achamian said, "of breaking the back of my promises."

I feel like this quote, along with the quote about the past that MSJ mentioned earlier and the "I was meant to suffer" one from chapter 1, beautifully sum up Akka's character and story arc.
He has such great lines.

Maithanet came from the deep south, Inrau had told him, from Cingulat or Nilnamesh, where the hold of the Thousand Temples was uncertain.

This part of his backstory is presumably true, right? Since I am completely clueless when it comes to geography, could someone confirm this for me?
Shimeh isn't far from there - Kellhus goes on to conquer one of those to right after his anointment in Shimeh. This could be true assuming that Moenghus didn't start his conquest of the Cishaurim in their holy city - which makes sense. He'd want to do his own 'prince of nothing' bit outside the power center. Once he had a proper identiy - Mallahet - he'd eventually make his way to Shimeh. During that time he would have realized he needed a child for TTT and would have sired Maithanet.

The story of Maithanet's birthplace could have been muddled by hearsay, but Nilnamesh and Cingulat  are far enough south to be confused for eachother in rumors.

Kind of like how people in the US know about where Israel is (probably), but the rest of the middle east is just 'a place' ie most people don't know specifically where each country/city is in relation to eachother just that its over here ... somewhere.

Point being, the rumors of Maithanets origins are close enough to what is likely the truth for it not to matter much either way.

But before any words could be spoken, hands guided the Prince, still staring, to one side, and Achamian found himself looking into the serene and surprisingly youthful face of Maithanet.
The Shriah's face darkened, but his blue eyes glittered with . . . with . . .

More clues to Maithanet's identity. He's most likely only in his mid-to-late 20s at this point!
Also, those Anasūrimbor/Dūnyain supernaturally dominant genetics really are insane. Maithanet's mother was presumably a dark-skinned, dark-haired, brown-eyed Ketyai woman, and yet he still looks Norsirai. Still, not as ridiculous as in the case of his nephews and nieces, as it's just him in this case.
Earwa genetics are a bit Fantastic ;)

He can see the Few.
Only the Few could see the Few.

When I first read this, I thought this would turn out to be quite important later on. It seems like it was just another clue to his identity (he's of the Few just like his father and half-brother). Maybe it was also something that helped him uncover some of those plots?
I didn't really get the impact of this when I read it initially - not like the revelation in TWP where Kellhus reveals he's of the Few. I think you're right, its largely a clue to his family heritige, along with his other physical attributes. In retrospect, its glaringly obvious that he's related to Kellhus.

The Shriah turned his strong bearded profile to him, and Proyas was struck by the crisp blue of his eyes. "Tell me, Nersei Proyas," Maithanet said with the voice of edict. "Who was that man, that sorcerer, who dared pollute my presence?"

And here Proyas finds himself caught in the web of manipulations of a Dūnyain for the first time. Which will sadly be a constant for the rest of his life, as we know.
Oof. Knowing his last free moments are behind him hurts more because of how it ends.
Poor guy.

Some further remarks: Interesting that we have those mentions that something is "off" about Sarcellus, that absence of something. Remember how Simas was described by Nautzera as being "devoid of sentiment" in the previous chapter? To me that's further evidence that he was indeed a skin-spy at that point. Nautzera thinks that's just part of Simas' character, but it's very likely that it's something else.

The skin-spies have been around for hundreds of years at this point. People, especially those in high station who have unknowingly been in contact with them for centuries, are probably used to this flat-affect effect. And I agree, skin-spies everywhere.

The Almanac: PON Edition / Re: ARC: TDTCB Chapter 5
« on: May 09, 2018, 07:58:06 pm »
I don't think its that much of a stretch. Really, Xerias was playing all sides of the board - and yeah it would have failed without Kellhus which is what Xerias was trying to force. The Ikurei dynasty was poised to take over the world, via peace treaties with Kain. Presumably they had agents high up in the Thousand Temples as well.

Also keep in mind that without a holy war, and without the decimation of Kain, the Three Seas would have had probably twice the manpower, and more importantly the Cishaurim, to contest the Consult. Of course, without Kelmomas there would have been no No-God, so the three seas would have been more united and would have been perfectly safe from the Consult threat indefinitely.

Oh, I see you are now an Admin of the Wiki.

So much work, so little appreciation. Keep it up Thelli, you're awesome.

The Unholy Consult / Re: [TUC spoiler] - About the end of TAE
« on: May 09, 2018, 04:19:37 pm »
Some interesting thoughts there FB.

You know, if TSA was supposed to be something of an inversion of LOTR or fantasy et al, TUC ends right where the Ring gets destroyed. Obviously, in our case here the Ring isn't so much destroyed as handed directing to Sauron. This means that the story hasn't ended, it has just began.

This obviously creates confusion, since this Beginning is also The End. As you neatly pointed out, we don't know which bits exactly are ended, and which are starting. The entire story structure remains pretty ambiguous without TNG to bookend things, much the same way that PON reads much differently without TAE.

Literature / Re: Yearly Targets 2018
« on: May 09, 2018, 04:00:12 pm »
Thanks Thelli (I can't decide how to abbreviate your name :P). As I said, I think I'll read some sequels. It really seems that everyone agrees that later books are where its at. This kind of goes against my rule, but unlike Prince of Thorns which I very nearly hated, Storm Front had elements that I really liked. I'm tempted to read more, and your encouragement makes it all the  more enticing.

The Almanac: PON Edition / Re: ARC: TDTCB Chapter 5
« on: May 09, 2018, 03:57:30 pm »
I think Xerias appears to be far less than he is, actually. Its kind of a complex thing, but he demands everyone think he is strong, which makes him appear weak and overbearing. In reality though, he proves himself to be extremely shrewd, though the way things are written makes it seem like a double-bluff, making the reader want to prescribe his accomplishments as happenstance and luck.

On the first read, he seems like an archetypal incompetent ruler propped up by those beneath him and behind the scenes. Knowing what we do after the fact, we know that he actually manages to out-maneuver the machinations of fairly substantial Consult efforts. Given the fact that its likely his spy network is infiltrated with skin-spies, as is his top adviser as well as his own mother and confidant , AND he's beset by his more popular/charasmatic nephew trying to take the throne, AND the plots of both Maithanet and Moenghus, it becomes readily apparent that Xerias is actually quite the Master of Intrigue himself. Perhaps even the best we see in the series bar maybe Kellhus.

The Ikurei (or at least Xerias and Conphas) are extremely strong contenders in Earwa, and knowing what they are up against makes them all the more impressive. If not for the Dunyain, Xerias and Conphas would have come very nearly to completing the first part of the Thousandfold Thought, uniting humanity under one banner and religion. The two of them might actually have done if in less time, given that they didn't have to forcefully conquer and convert the entire world to a new religion, merely half, and both halves were already poised to be on their side.

This is probably too deep of speculation for this chapter, but whatever :P . All in all, the world would clearly have been better off without the Dunyain mucking it all up. No Dunsult, no Kelmomas, no Maithanet/Kellhus/Moenghus .

The Unholy Consult / Re: Serwa seen with the Judging Eye
« on: May 08, 2018, 04:19:21 pm »
Psatma is a better counterpoint, but her arguments are inherently tainted by her beliefs, which are irrational by definition. The Nonmen would also serve as a source of relevant information here.
Kellhus has his own beliefs to deal with though. By the time we get to hear more in detail from him, he's basically a raving lunatic - can't decipher his own machinations from that of Ajokli.

I'm definitely inclined to take Psatma's word at the same level of Kellhus. They both have ego, and belief, expectation, and circumstance changing how they interpret and relay information to those around them (and by extension the reader).

Literature / Re: Yearly Targets 2018
« on: May 08, 2018, 04:12:59 pm »
Storm Front by Jim Butcher (15)
I picked this one up because I heard from a friend, and also a lot of recs from r/fantasy, that this was a good book.
You know, it was alright. Better than I expected, given that it was both a detective novel and a modern fantasy... neither of which I generally like. The main character, Dresden, was snarky and somewhat interesting. The novel was pretty short, so not a ton of room for character development, but I think it might be worth reading a sequel or two to see where it goes.

On to: The Colour of Magic. Very interestingly written.

The Almanac: PON Edition / Re: ARC: TDTCB Chapter 4
« on: May 07, 2018, 08:00:40 pm »
"Any price"
Inrau's bare few scenes are full of poetry. Love it.

The Unholy Consult / Re: Serwa seen with the Judging Eye
« on: May 07, 2018, 07:53:00 pm »
My thought is that it has something to do with her personally. Thinking back to the idea that knowledge is what makes sin, Serwa is painfully aware of her actions and their repercussions. She's aware of the falseness of her father, that he isn't a god but a man playing god's game. Shes aware that all the men in the ordeal is damned and does nothing to stop or, etc. etc. Her Ciphranginess comes from her quasi-dunyain ability to know her actions

I'm not sure that knowledge or ignorance of sin matters in Earwa.  Didn't Bakker tell us there was a right and a wrong way to believe/act, and if you happened to be born into the wrong religion, sucks to be you.  Whole nations would be damned, etc.   I'm more inclined to think it goes towards her actions.  Kellhus tells us that using others as tools is especially damning, and Serwa is certainly guilty of that in a big way, in addition to her mastery of sorcery.

Yes, Bakker said there's objective morality and whole nations are damned because of it. In the world of TSA, I'm not sure that answer is particularly revealing.

Knowledge and ignorance are really the only things that we are shown makes sin. I think MSJ can help you out with that one ;) .

Sorcery, on the other hand, we have no idea if it makes you damned or not. We know it makes you marked, but we have less information on The Mark than we do on damnation. I suspect the two phenomenon are largely separate - it just so happens that most people use magic to kill people, and schoolmen/quya tend to be knowledgeable people. Both attributes leading to damnation - sorcery is merely the means, not the cause.

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