Ware, Here be spoilers, some spoilers thingys some stuff and a whinge.
HummmÖ. After reading Traitorís Knot I feel both satisfied and disappointed.
Disappointed because after Perilís Gate Iíd expect the mainline plotlines to move on and they havenít. The situation at the end of TK is one we have seen many variations on before; Arithon commits some infamous and misunderstood act. Lysaer uses this a further evidence of Arithonís evil, welds the townsmen together again and set of to raise an army. The clanborn must withstand yet another decimation of their people. Elariaís and Arithonís love is still constrained by Elariaís oath and Morriel/Seldie still plots to destroy Arithon. Iím not looking forward to Stormed Fortress too much because I feel I can second-guess the main thrust of the plot. Lysaer takes HUGE army to defeat Arithon and assorted allies. The allies suffer ruinous loses with Arithon stealing a pyrrhic victory at the end, which Lysaer uses as yet more evidence against him. Iíve seen this situation before; Tal Quorin, Miderl Bay, Vastmark and Daon Ramon. Seeing again wonít add anything. The only variation is that this time its more the allies and not Arithon under attack, and that Lysaer will possibly use spellcraft against Alestron.
There were so many avenues that got cut of that would have IMHO made the storyline much more interesting and less static, Like Arithonís and Elariaís child, the síBrydions razing their own fortress, and the Kevor/Ellaine/Lysaer reunion.
Also the Kralovir. I donít understand how they, as a plot device, moved the story forward, apart from the character growth of Sulfin Evend (which was wonderful to see him become a new force of Athera without being on the ďsideĒ of the F7 or Arithon.) Yes the two scenes when we got to see their working were wonderfully well written ( I was physically squirming reading the sacrifice scene at the end) but after reading of their end in TK the book felt more like a stand alone interlude than a novel in a series.
I guess Iím pining for Arcs 4 and 5 where the plotlines that interest me (the Paravians, The mistwraithe and the Black Rose Prophecy) will emerge fully.
Whinge over. I did really enjoy the actual read of the book. Janny is a master at pulling you into a scene. Arithonís and Elaria almost union, the cutting between their tenderness and the race to stop them really tore me in two. I understood the union needed to be stopped but I oh, so very much, wanted them to have their moment of joy.
Lysaer and Sulfin Evend kept me on the edge of my seat, is Lysaer becoming more aware of the curse or more under its thrall or both? The scene where they fought reminded me of the fight between Arithon and Caolle and bought home the curseís power once again.
Jenysa: Now there is a raft of possibilities there, Iíd never contemplated that the clans of Rathain could become distrustful of their Prince, but now itís a real possibility. Davien: OHHHHHH, I will never understand him! I need to read that conversation between him and Sethvir again.
There are bits that blindsided me (as always with Jannyís book I love the twists an turns) The necromancers, the frozen Iyats (thereís potential for almost anything) and what Arithon did to the Waystone (iyat + Waystone consciousness = ???? ) . I can see how Arithon is giving Fionn room to grow. And I think weíve passed the fates of ďdying on salt waterĒ and ďcrossed swords and smokeĒ there were references to both of those on board the Evenstar, but then again it could be Janny leading us all again up the garden path.
I think that enough review for now. I want to join in the discussion with everyone else
Yes, you can argue that the book is repeating the same cycle we've seen over and over again, but the characters are developing in interesting ways and we get insight into newer characters like Davien and Sulfin. And who is to say that the S'Brydion's won't destroy their castle and melt into the shadows to harass Lysaer in other ways in the next book? Or find an alternative route? I can't wait till the next book to see what happens!
Hellcat, I understand what you're trying to say. I get this strange feeling when I think back, like... there didn't seem to be as many scenes as in previous books, but the scenes took longer to read. I'm writing up a choppy timeline of this book, and comparing it to the same from previous books to see if it's just my imagination, or if there were actually less events than before.
Doesn't really effect my enjoyment of the book though. You get to savor the chapters with greater detail.
But have things really changed? Arithon has grown certainly. All the characters have. We were introduced, fully, in this book alone to the Kralovir threat. I, for one, didn't understand the scope of the problem, until within the first chapter of this book. But by the end chapter, the threat has been assimilated.
The change, I guess, is that many of Lysaer's high ranking officials are dead and/or gone. But that's not exactly the most exotic shake-up in the plotline.
For a while, I was fascinated with Arithon's plan to seed amity between the clansmen and townsmen. Such a unique idea, really brilliant. I was crushed of course to see that plan dashed on the rocks (of necessity).
And, yes, now I'm just rambling, and that's a good time to stop talking.
I understood the union needed to be stopped but I oh, so very much, wanted them to have their moment of joy.
Weíre Knights of the round table we SPOIL whenever weíre able
Yes I agree that the characters ARE growing and changing considerably, Sulfin Evend and Arithonís prismatic foresight open up new possibilities, but those possibilities donít seem to be having any effect. The characters still seem to be caught in the same situations. OK Arithon tried his best to convince the síBrydions to raze Alestron and for them to consent to that would have been a dramatic character shitft, but it would still have added IMHO another layer of interest.
To be honest if this were any other author apart from Janny I would be immensely satisfied with this book, it is a joy to read complex, conclusive but with enough open points to encourage some serious speculation.
Its just I have come to trust Janny immensely over this series, that she understands exactly where she is leading us. But at the moment I feel that the plotline is ďdoing a bit of a Robert JordanĒ, The characters are growing but the plotline isnít. Hopefully by the end of SF I will be utterly eating these words!
At the time of reading this chapter I understood Sidirís and Dakarís imperative to stop the conception of a child. Especially given Arithonís care checking Elariaís freedom to allow their union to take place, Dakar KNEW she wasnít free he KNEW that they did not wish to bring a child into the world given their circumstances. With that knowledge I understand why he acted, I would have done the same in his place. I think the pre-Kewar Arithon, would not have trusted himself and would have felt so guilty binding his daughter to the Korani. The Post-Kewar Arithon understands more both his own power and the freedom allowed to all Athís beings. Dakar and Sidir hadnít recognised the fullness of Arithonís change (nor do they share Elariaís deeper knowledge of him) and for that they have to be forgiven. I need to read this scene again, because it sounded to me like this was one of Dakarís non remembered prophecies and if so why didnít it come true?
I think Dakar was too affected by drink to tell whether he would have remembered it or not in normal circumstances. I think that entire scene was to take the reader through it thinking yes, stop it, then realizing afterwards that we should start trusting Arithon more, he's right, he could handle it.
With two intelligent opposing forces, you'll have a lot of move / countermove that seems like circling around the same plot points. Eventually, one will think outside the box and surprise the other. This book I feel sets us up to see something surprising in the next book instead of just another massacre/get away by the skin of your teeth cycle.
SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER
SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER
Hellcat: I need to read this scene again, because it sounded to me like this was one of Dakarís non remembered prophecies and if so why didnít it come true?
I initially thought that as well, and then at the end of the chapter, I went back and figured that it must have been as Auna suggests, just the result of heavy drinking. But who knows? o_0 ::coughJannycough::
Hannah - You Asked
Spoiler Spoiler Spoiler
Dakar was very drunk - and if you read the scene carefully - he mumbled what he saw aloud, and when pressed, did recall the scene from memory.
His deep trance prophecies cannot be pulled back into recall --
Already in draft, in SF, there is a scene that begins to deepen the understanding of Dakar's gift. Just another detail that's gonna unwind more fully...
This Series - cannot be assimilated ONE BIT until it is fully finshed - nor can its parts and its arcs show their complete and final connection. Anymore than the presumption that this was "just medieval fantasy set on another world with funny names" (some reviewer's takes from CoTM) could hold water, NOW. The intricate depth of understanding of All the factions, building now, is utterly necessary to achieve the impact of the finale.
Would the scene in the Halwythwood grove have even Worked without prior understanding of ALL of the layers and multiplied levels upon which that one drew....I doubt it. The emotional tenor that was (hopefully!!) seamless would have been broken to bits, with fill in on what was happening on all the other levels and layers - as it was, the prep work was done in other scenes, in other prior volumes, and HERE the orchestration in that explosive moment of ALL those threads could be set in tight focus, and with minimal ballast....
I'm left at the end of the book
What more do i Know now ?
Was the story in a story necessary
It was well written but i feel cheated.
Still cant wait for the next one I,m sure Janny will be back on form
I don't think anyone here has a problem with you saying you were disappointed, David - but for it to carry any weight at all, you'll need to build a better case for your view.
I think TK is the best of the series to date. Out of all the books so far, it was this one that really brought things into focus for me. It RESONATED with me to a degree far above the others. It was one of the hardest to read...and for certain it was the most distressing, but it was also one of the most revealing.
I think this message board is open to discussion - but there has to be a discussion. Calling something "Jordanesque" is a cop-out in terms of a complaint.
When I read Traitor's Knot, I found myself seeing storylines that had occured throughout the series being brought into an intricate weaving. I saw characters stepping forward and doing exactly what they would do in such circumstances, even if I never would have imagined it. (Sulfin Evend for instance). I saw Davien in a light I had not pictured him...and I could go on. (I'm sneaking in to write this while at work, or I would)
I find that each time I read a new book in the series, the others become that much clearer...It's a journey - not just of story, but of understanding. Multiple layers that are drawn out only after more of the maze is uncovered. By the end, I have no doubt I will be amazed, and that this series will stand out as one of greatness.
It is unfair to discuss this fully on the Author site.
I don't believe the storyline has progressed sufficiently.
Why not David? IMO, the Author's site is probably the BEST place to discuss it.
I enjoyed TK immensely, but I still feel that it wasn't the same as her previous books. I can only put that down to the fact that TK is only one half of a complete book. I'll reserve full judgement until I've read SF.
I think Janny can have completely different paces to her books without being labeled inconsistent or having us think she's not in control of her story. I imagine it's quite intentional that some books are action-packed, and others focus more on topics and scenes that require a more thorough written description, so give the perception of being slow. SoM was very busy, but PG and TK have seemed slower. They are different story arcs, though. This arc seems to focus a lot on Arithon's inner growth...
I don't understand a reader being able to say "The storyline isn't moving at all". It's not your storyline, you don't know where it's got to go, so how can you question if it's getting there in a timely fashion? (Note: when I say "you", it's in a general sense, not directed at any specific person.)
And only 1/5 of a story arc which is only 1/5 of the entire story.
I can only put that down to the fact that TK is only one half of a complete book
And a story that was originally conceived in fewer books (three, I think)until Jieret forced Grand Conspiracy to be split into GC and PG, then SF also had to be split to TK and SF. IIRC, Janny said the splits required her to rework a few elements; and, since TK is nothing but spoilers, perhaps her original flow for the story needed to be changed at bit.
In any case, well done Janny. (Even if I was taken aback abit at first.)
While it is correct that this book is only a fragment of the WOLAS epic. I believe that EACH and every book has to stand upon its merits. I do not buy books on the basis that the entire series may interest me, when its finished, I buy books because the individual book interests me. TK cannot IMHO be considered as half a book, since Janny decided it merited being a whole book (for obvious reasons.)
Janny is a selling writer, she signs contracts for each book individually. Not for the series. If the impact of one book diminshes sales, the complete series may never be published and then the future storyline progression becomes immaterial. This is what I fear. While I utterly agree that Janny MUST remain true to the story she has created the readership and publishing house are not under any such obligation.
I reserve my right to critise any book for any (imho) valid reason. I care about this series, I care that a book I was so looking forward to has not met my expectations. That is why I am publishing my opinion here for all (inc Janny) to see. How Janny wishes to take my comments on is entirely up to her
Absolutely you've the right to voice your opinions, but they will, of course, invite responses and so a discussion ensues that, hopefully, enlightens us all.
I'm always a little afraid when I get a book I've been dying to read that it won't meet my high expectations. But I loved TK. This book has so much meat in it. True, there isn't as much action, and there's a lot of talking, but so much becomes clear in this book that wasn't clear. So often when reading this book a new cartoon light would appear above my head going 'oh, now I get it'.
Which is exactly why I enjoyed the book so much.
I agree up to a point. The nature of a series of books is that you read them in order. And whilst it would be nice to have each book self contained, I feel that it is quite impossible in this particular situation as it is in others (try reading LoTR starting at Return of the King and see if it makes sense to you :D) On the other hand, some series can be quite independant (Anne Rice's, The Vampire Chronicles springs to mind).
Publishing contraints prevented this book from being a single volume. IIRC, it wasn't Janny's intention that this be two separate books. Therefore I, personally, will honour her original intent. How you treat it is up to you
This to me was more a character development journey rather than an external world advancement. Many characters got fleshed out in interesting and sometimes unexpected ways.
I do think this book was almost self contained and was certainly an easier read than earlier works - when characters had their revelations, I was there with them instead of left wondering what I missed or how stupid could I be for not getting it even after multiple reads.
See, my interpretation is that the storyline has progressed quite a bit actually. Sulfin Evend has figured out that Lysaer is not the all-mighty god that he thought and is, perhaps, even wrong. Or if not wrong, per se, then at least he is taking Lysaer's words with a very large grain of salt. His speaking to Assandir was very illuminating for himself as well as for us - the readers. Then there is the Kralovir. We don't know where these guys are going to go but they were fleshed out considerably in this book and I am sure that we haven't seen the last of them. Then there is the fact that Kevor and his mother are together and who knows what that is going to mean for Lysaer and his "religion." We got more insight into Davien and his motives and plans. Then there is the break up of the alliance between Arithon and Alestron and we are left to wonder if the Duke will destroy his citadel in order to keep up good relations with Arithon. Plus we found out about Jeynsa and her feelings for Arithon and the fact that she is trying to find him, possibly to kill him. Then there is the children of Feylind and Fiark, you know that if they are in there they are going to come into play somehow. Then there is the waystone/iyat combination that is going to cause some serious problems for the Koriani I am sure. And as for Arithon himself, we now see how his power has grown and how he has accepted his link to the land - as shown not once but twice - in this book. The fact that he did something that the F7 did not expect is VERY telling to me. This could lead to the resolution of the prophecy and the reunification of the F7. And last but not least we can, hopefully, expect the meeting of Sulfin and Arithon in the next book. And I probably didn't even hit all the examples. All in all I would say that quite a bit happened to push the storyline along. But that is just my two cents worth.
Humbly, I totally agree with you.
I also totally agree with Annette.
(I've lost every single debate I've ever been in. Not hard to figure out why.)
The further I get from the first, rush through, read it now, ohmygoshwhatwillhappennextwhereisfillintheblankwhatwillthismeanwhattheheckisDavi enupto.....
the more I appreciate the book.
as a stand alone
as a crucial point of the series
as a book splintered from its originally conceived placement
as a deepening of heretofore unsuspected meanings
And I can't wait to read it again. I wish my husband would hurry up and finish it!
Finished reading a few days ago now. After waiting a few long years, It was nice to finally get to read the book. It sat on my bookshelf for a week before I could bring myself to read it. Afraid of being disapointed maybe? Like a long lost friend you think you remember what they were like, but you're worried they might have changed. I wasn't disapointed but a few things always stick in your mind(well mine anyway)
Yes, That scene, brings new meaning to the phrase
"did the earth move for you"
And who would like to be in Dakar's shoes at that point. Some things could be taking friendship a bit too far!
Is This going to happen every time?