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White Road Discussion - Contains SPOILERS

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  • marleenstam
    I know most of you don t have the book yet, but I want to get some of my thoughts down on electronic paper while it s still fresh (I finished it this morning).
    Message 1 of 1 , May 23, 2010
      I know most of you don't have the book yet, but I want to get some of my thoughts down on electronic paper while it's still fresh (I finished it this morning). Please jump in when you can!

      First of all: I enjoyed the book a lot. More than Shadows Return, actually. But some things got me thinking:

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      1. I miss Nysander. Not because of Nysander's character, although he was fun and whimsical and I liked him, but because his presence allowed Thero to be the sullen, awkward persona who clashed so deliciously with Seregil. Thero in his reformed state is a much happier person, I am sure, but really not as interesting to read about. A Thero who is actually liking the whole Nightrunning thing (with Micum in SR) is a bit of a loss, even. In this book Thero to me is like Wallmart: the heroes go to him to get some of the items we need, like slave collars and clothes, and then we don't think about him anymore. I am sad to have lost him as a source of conflict on the good side.

      2. For the same reason, I missed Phoria in this book. If the good guys are all in agreement and are all liking each other, their interactions aren't as interesting. Of course, we have Rieser, but I think it is obvious from the start that he is going to be won over by our friends. I wouldn't have minded to read more about his inner struggle as his world forcibly expands beyond his home valley and I expected more of a power struggle with Seregil while in Plenimar.

      3. Seregil's overwhelmingly feels concerned in this book. Mostly about Alec and Sebrahn. While this is understandable, it is also a little monotonous. The scenes where he squares off with people like Rieser, Ulan and Ilar are the best in the book, but they are few and far between. Seregil thrives on conflict, it brings out his flinty and vicious side (and his moody, immature, sneaky and devil-may-care side as well), which makes him such an awesome well rounded character. To have him surrounded by supportive friends and a steadfast lover makes him, dare I say it, a bit bland.

      4. Alec, as the former goody two shoes from the boonies, was of course always a bit more bland, and I have no problem with that, it created much of the tension in the first 3 books. I also realize that when you keep almost losing the one you love you are going to be very appreciative of the time you spend together and you're not going to argue as much about the whose turn it is to take the trash out. But as Alec grows up I keep waiting for some more deeper conflicts between him and Seregil. He started the relationship as the apprentice and saw Seregil as almost a father figure. A relationship started that way has all kinds of patterns that will need to be broken later in order to reach equality. (Like the fight that made it possible to start their relationship in the first place at end of Stalking Darkness). I keep waiting for more of those kind of fights as Alec establishes a more equal relationship with his former teacher. When is he ever going to be convinced Seregil is dead wrong about something and stalk off to do what he thinks is best himself? It is normal for two healthy young man, barely out of their teens, to have lots of sex (and don't skimp on the details for my sake, Lynn!), I also think it is normal for the same two men to have quite a few very lively disagreements. Seregil is naturally the dominant party in this relationship, and in my personal experience cocky, dominant, self assured men don't turn considerate and concerned without the other party in the relationship forcibly pointing out when they're being inconsiderate dicks.

      5. The absence of some greater force of darkness. Of course, they've already saved the world in book 2, and to keep creating other evil threats to the world would be a bit forced (let's leave that to the more mediocre authors), but I feel the absence of an active Plenimaran Overlord or even a little necromancer or two. Ulan is, while bad, not really evil and even a bit pathetic. Ilar is great in his patheticness and obsession, but hardly a threat.

      Anyone?
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