Author Topic: Reread  (Read 2102 times)

Offline Con

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Reread
« on: October 19, 2016, 03:15:41 PM »
On a Reread is there anything I should look out for?

Or anything anyone wants me to look out for to answer a question they have?

Offline Con

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Re: Reread
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2016, 05:16:29 PM »
Ok so I'm going to be using this thread as an update as I go along.

200 pages in and I'm appreciating the detail a lot more than I did the first time. It's a great introduction book to the spire and the systems of airships and Etherialist magic/engineering.

Thoughts on characters:
Gwen is annoying but useful.

Grimm is a great leader, not as much a dashing rouge as he'd like to believe himself to be and more than a little full of pride. I saw no logical reason as to why he needed to turn down the Spirearchs intial offer let alone be rude and disrespectful. Seems out of character with the rest of his interactions with other characters.

Benedict is a great guy only problem being he has no noticeable flaws. Perfect gentlemen, perfect physical specimen, martial artist, loyal, honourable, witty. He seems to be the only character that doesn't have a quirk beyond his stomach anyway.

Does anybody else just want to hug folly and let her know everything's going to be ok?

Bridget realistic character and I like her personality, but her only real usefulness is as a translator for Rowl. Hopefully she'll become more useful as the series progresses. Benedict deserves someone whose more than just a translator damsel in distress.

Creedy and the rest of the crew are useful and well used they serve their purpose.

Spirearch Addison is likeable, though has an unbelievable disdain for propriety which he needs to, for the audience to believe he's a good monarch particularly from an American perspective. There's just no evidence of a comparable monarch from the Renaissance to Victorian who didn't behave like sociatile niceities were fundamentally necessary in a monarch.

Looking forward to learning more about the other Spires including the Olympian Spire but also the Pikers, Atlanteans, and Nephesians. I like how the Atlanteans are dark skinned. Nephesians I'm assuming are a reference to Ephesians. Pikers based on their ritual scarring. Picts? Though they're more tattoos. Ritual scarring the only examples I can think of are tribal peoples in Africa and South America. Any ideas on who they may be based off? The only other thing is they have Beehive's and control the monopoly on honey and mead. Mead would suggest Norse roots wouldn't it?

Offline Quantus

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Re: Reread
« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2016, 10:00:48 PM »
Just finished my own re-read, so Ill go along with you.  :)

Ok so I'm going to be using this thread as an update as I go along.

200 pages in and I'm appreciating the detail a lot more than I did the first time. It's a great introduction book to the spire and the systems of airships and Etherialist magic/engineering.

Thoughts on characters:
Gwen is annoying but useful.
She's still playing audience surrogate to some extent, along with Bridget.  She's the one that doesnt actually know about much outside of crystals and the aristocracy, and so has to beat her ignorance against other characters for them to answer the questions that the reader will have.  Bridget does the same for matters of social interaction and such that Gwen should know. 
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Grimm is a great leader, not as much a dashing rouge as he'd like to believe himself to be and more than a little full of pride. I saw no logical reason as to why he needed to turn down the Spirearchs intial offer let alone be rude and disrespectful. Seems out of character with the rest of his interactions with other characters.
I think it comes down to a few things:  he hates being in the spires and dreams of a life free in the sky's, he hates the idea of belonging to or being accountable to anyone but himself, and he is "more than a littel full of pride."  Also, the initial offer was equivalent to trying to hire a decorated warrior to do menial physical labor, or a Ferrari to haul turnips.  That being said I think his more emotional reaction might actually be an extension of his apparent etheric connection to the ship itself; The Predator is just that: a predator, and to downgrade herself into a domesticated beast of burden, well Imagine a bunch of cats getting tied to a dog-sled...
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Benedict is a great guy only problem being he has no noticeable flaws. Perfect gentlemen, perfect physical specimen, martial artist, loyal, honourable, witty. He seems to be the only character that doesn't have a quirk beyond his stomach anyway.
I think he hates the fact that he's Warriorborn.  It's the sort of thing that will come up again and cause bigger problems before it goes away. 
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Does anybody else just want to hug folly and let her know everything's going to be ok?
Yup  :)
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Bridget realistic character and I like her personality, but her only real usefulness is as a translator for Rowl. Hopefully she'll become more useful as the series progresses. Benedict deserves someone whose more than just a translator damsel in distress.
hahaha, Ill forgive you saying that because you are only a few hundred pages into your re-read.  You are clearing forgetting certain events toward the end.  :P
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Spirearch Addison is likeable, though has an unbelievable disdain for propriety which he needs to, for the audience to believe he's a good monarch particularly from an American perspective. There's just no evidence of a comparable monarch from the Renaissance to Victorian who didn't behave like socialite niceties were fundamentally necessary in a monarch.
I think it's fairly Victorian, which is literally defined as the reign of Queen Victoria. She'd face different challenges to a nation who's monarch is reaching the end of it's political supremacy than the spirearch would, so her relying more heavily on the socialite avenues of influence and power make sense for her, but the tactic of trying to convince everyone you are absent-minded and non-threatening while getting the real work done in the shadows makes just as much sense.  And I have to think that a King with a style like the Spirearch would only make the history books if he royally screwed up.  (no pun intended, but Ill take it ;))
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Offline Quantus

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Re: Reread
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2016, 10:01:32 PM »
On a Reread is there anything I should look out for?

Or anything anyone wants me to look out for to answer a question they have?
Please keep a look-out for any mentions of Heaven, Archangels, Builders, etc. 
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Offline Con

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Re: Reread
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2016, 01:20:13 PM »
Please keep a look-out for any mentions of Heaven, Archangels, Builders, etc. 

I've noted the mentions of Archangels not so much the Builders a little of the Heaven. Most people in the Spire seem to treat Archangels and Heaven the same as any other society would treat a religion. That it's the main religion of the Spire and possibly other Spires but that the Wayist is considered another religion that is also spread amongst the other spires. I suspect Jim will evantually reconcile the two by saying The Way is literally just another way of worshipping or abiding by the same philosophy as that of the Archangel religion.

The most notable mention of the Archangels is Gwendolyns mother stating that several aeronauts have reported seeing Archangels while in a sound state of mind and that she finds the reports credible even a sign and portent.

Quote from: Aeronauts Windlass
"Signs and and portents appear. No fewer than for Fleet aeronauts have reported sightings of an Archangel, and swear that they were neither drunk nor sleeping"
page 10

I'll keep an eye out for more Builders referencing and will search it on my kindle after I've finished the reread.

Offline Quantus

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Re: Reread
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2016, 01:33:48 PM »
I've noted the mentions of Archangels not so much the Builders a little of the Heaven. Most people in the Spire seem to treat Archangels and Heaven the same as any other society would treat a religion. That it's the main religion of the Spire and possibly other Spires but that the Wayist is considered another religion that is also spread amongst the other spires. I suspect Jim will evantually reconcile the two by saying The Way is literally just another way of worshipping or abiding by the same philosophy as that of the Archangel religion.
I dont think so, personally.  I think the Archangels are actual beings (possibly protoss-style aliens) that are affiliated with the Builders (who I think obviously must be real). Cavendish mentions at one point trying to lure "them" out of heaven (space-station?).   EDIT: Actual quote "We'll never destroy them while they remain in Heaven"

Separately, at one point a foreign captains says "or by God in Heaven and the Long Road both, I will..."  If theories are correct that this is a post-apocalyptic earth, I think the God-in-Heaven is some alien force that adopted or was painted with the vestiges of the old religion, whereas Wayist/Long Road is more like a Buddhist religion that is more philosophic movement than mythological religion. 
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Offline Con

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Re: Reread
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2016, 02:13:05 PM »
She's still playing audience surrogate to some extent, along with Bridget.  She's the one that doesnt actually know about much outside of crystals and the aristocracy, and so has to beat her ignorance against other characters for them to answer the questions that the reader will have.  Bridget does the same for matters of social interaction and such that Gwen should know.
True enough, bit like butters original purpose. Though both Butters and Gwen annoy me in the first book appearance, at least until later in the book. Butters mostly because I completely agreed with Thomas assessment of his character, until Butters proved himself that is. I remember liking Gwens clarity moment on my first read where Grimm says "She has seen the Mistmaw"

I think it comes down to a few things:  he hates being in the spires and dreams of a life free in the sky's, he hates the idea of belonging to or being accountable to anyone but himself, and he is "more than a littel full of pride."  Also, the initial offer was equivalent to trying to hire a decorated warrior to do menial physical labor, or a Ferrari to haul turnips.  That being said I think his more emotional reaction might actually be an extension of his apparent etheric connection to the ship itself; The Predator is just that: a predator, and to downgrade herself into a domesticated beast of burden, well Imagine a bunch of cats getting tied to a dog-sled...
You make some good points, but hey the right dog sled team could also be hunting dogs, guard dogs and war dogs. Dogsled teams were awesome they conquered the arctic and anarctic where man's great machinery couldn't.

I think he hates the fact that he's Warriorborn.  It's the sort of thing that will come up again and cause bigger problems before it goes away.
Yeah I noticed that and thought I had written it, but beyond stupid societal prejudicial issues there's no downside to being Warriorborn and every upside. So it's a stupid flaw. I mean maybe if the Warriorborn were obviously oppressed and suppressed, but beyond a little jealousy at their abilities and not being able to advance into high positions I haven't found any evidence of it.
 
hahaha, Ill forgive you saying that because you are only a few hundred pages into your re-read.  You are clearing forgetting certain events toward the end.

Probably

  :PI think it's fairly Victorian, which is literally defined as the reign of Queen Victoria. She'd face different challenges to a nation who's monarch is reaching the end of it's political supremacy than the spirearch would, so her relying more heavily on the socialite avenues of influence and power make sense for her, but the tactic of trying to convince everyone you are absent-minded and non-threatening while getting the real work done in the shadows makes just as much sense.  And I have to think that a King with a style like the Spirearch would only make the history books if he royally screwed up.  (no pun intended, but Ill take it ;))
I'm still not sure I buy it. If anything the Spirearch would have to play more into social niceties to convince people he was a harmless dandy. I like the character I just want a reasonable explanation for why he would behave such a way when the rest of society down to the lowest social class obeys some form of social etiquette. Was he fostered in a much more liberal Spire for instance. What made him disdain the very etiquette that gives him power in the first place.

Offline Quantus

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Re: Reread
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2016, 02:54:01 PM »
You make some good points, but hey the right dog sled team could also be hunting dogs, guard dogs and war dogs. Dogsled teams were awesome they conquered the arctic and anarctic where man's great machinery couldn't.
True, and the same can be said for airships; they can fill any number of niches both military and mercantile.  Cats...not-so-much, and Preddy is far more cat-like to my mind. 
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Yeah I noticed that and thought I had written it, but beyond stupid societal prejudicial issues there's no downside to being Warriorborn and every upside. So it's a stupid flaw. I mean maybe if the Warriorborn were obviously oppressed and suppressed, but beyond a little jealousy at their abilities and not being able to advance into high positions I haven't found any evidence of it.
Dont underestimate social prejudices and the depth of fear and/or self-loathing it can engender.  These things can manifest in all kinds of Ways.  Thomas is a reasonable comparison (other than the fact that thomas eats people).  Also, fwiw, we've only seen a very small cross-section of the society, the Warriorborn may well face more stigma in other habbles and other spires.  We've only seen 2 of the 236 inhabited habbles of the Spire, and nothing whatsoever of the others (beyond the one military group); and those two Habbles were trade centers and the most metropolitan of all the Habbles, get them in the Spire's equivalent of the hillbilly sticks and the life of a Warriorborn may well be a darker thing.   
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I'm still not sure I buy it. If anything the Spirearch would have to play more into social niceties to convince people he was a harmless dandy. I like the character I just want a reasonable explanation for why he would behave such a way when the rest of society down to the lowest social class obeys some form of social etiquette. Was he fostered in a much more liberal Spire for instance. What made him disdain the very etiquette that gives him power in the first place.
Well, to be fair I think a lot of that act is how he interacts with lower-born folks, individually.  We've not seen him in the presence of anyone in the aristocracy yet, or anyone that puts a whole lot of emphasis on the social niceties and hierarchy.  The only exception is Gwen, and after how they met I think he's just personally enjoying messing with her, not letting her use titles, etc.  It is entirely possible that his manner will change drastically when in that sort of social situation.  All we've seen so far is how he deals with his Guard and hireling (and favored snack vendors).
« Last Edit: October 24, 2016, 12:08:43 PM by Quantus »
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Offline Con

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Re: Reread
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2016, 04:37:37 PM »
Haven't gotten far enough in the book for more Archangel talk just got past the first Silkweaver battle. It seems to me Bridget could have shown some common sense and gathered up some of the silk that the baby silks left behind make herself a nice tidy profit that way.

I like the Olympians. There's a Commodore Pine in the Silkweaver fight I'd like to see again, he has an interesting story of leading his men through the surface. Plus he has a very common sense attitude both to Albion fussiness and to fighting the Silkweaver. Captain Grimm has also just said "The Olympian Navy holds that a captain should know the details of every position in his ships company by working them with his own hands, stem to stem. It's the only way to be sure you know what each man needs from his captain in order to be able to perform his duty." p358

I like that attitude. Very practical and even honourable in its fair minded nature. I think I'd want to be an Olympian of what we know so far of the Spire's. Honestly I think as a character I'd even prefer to be a warmongering Auroran than an Albion. Though I wouldn't mind Habble Landing I suppose.

Offline Con

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Re: Reread
« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2016, 02:41:10 PM »
"Dont underestimate social prejudices and the depth of fear and/or self-loathing it can engender.  These things can manifest in all kinds of Ways.  Thomas is a reasonable comparison (other than the fact that thomas eats people).  Also, fwiw, we've only seen a very small cross-section of the society, the Warriorborn may well face more stigma in other habbles and other spires.  We've only seen 2 of the 236 inhabited habbles of the Spire, and nothing whatsoever of the others (beyond the one military group); and those two Habbles were trade centers and the most metropolitan of all the Habbles, get them in the Spire's equivalent of the hillbilly sticks and the life of a Warriorborn may well be a darker thing."

That's true Benedict is from one of the most powerful families of the Spire and a guardsmen so that could be stemming peoples initial disrespect and prejudice. We also know that there are many Warriorborn at the base of the Spire as Farmers and presumably the base of the Spire is the poorest being the furthest away from Trade and closest to the Surface.

True, and the same can be said for airships; they can fill any number of niches both military and mercantile.  Cats...not-so-much, and Preddy is far more cat-like to my mind.  I'm still not sure I buy it. If anything the Spirearch would have to play more into social niceties to convince people he was a harmless dandy. I like the character I just want a reasonable explanation for why he would behave such a way when the rest of society down to the lowest social class obeys some form of social etiquette. Was he fostered in a much more liberal Spire for instance. What made him disdain the very etiquette that gives him power in the first place.
Well, to be fair I think a lot of that act is how he interacts with lower-born folks, individually.  We've not seen him in the presence of anyone in the aristocracy yet, or anyone that puts a whole lot of emphasis on the social niceties and hierarchy.  The only exception is Gwen, and after how they met I think he's just personally enjoying messing with her, not letting her use titles, etc.  It is entirely possible that his manner will change drastically when in that sort of social situation.  All we've seen so far is how he deals with his Guard and hireling (and favored snack vendors).
True my bet is sooner or later we'll see him in a more formal setting having to glad hand the families or the admiralty possibly even in the next book at Olympia.

Is it stupid of me to secretly equate Olympia with Australia. I know the obvious connection is Greece but I can't help but think of green and gold and fur trimmings and Commodore Pine as more Aussie in nature than Greece. Ah well probably just a fantasy.

Offline Rygar

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Re: Reread
« Reply #10 on: October 22, 2016, 02:56:15 PM »
One major downside to being Warriorborn is what appears to be a possible loss of control that can occur.

Ciriaco tells Benedict not to "let it out" after Benny growls at him.

Sycorax tells Renaldo that all the they can not expect the Warriorborn to maintain perfect poise foreve "Inevitably, the beast emerges."

After Benedict recovers from his wounds and awakens in the infirmary he is a completely different state of mind, necessitating Bridget carefully give him his food and water and make no sudden movements. 

Based on all this, I have to conclude that the Warriorborn are dangerous under certain circumstances.  We don't yet have enough information but I would posit that many of them choose relatively isolated lives (Wayist Monks, labourers at the base of the spire) partly because they don't want to hurt anyone should anything go wrong.  I think that is probably one of the reasons for the aristocratic discrimination.  It's one thing to not want someone to marry into your family for their iris shape, but it is quite another to have the same reservations out of a fear they could harm or kill your loved one in a moment of stress.

With all of that, I can imagine that Benedict would resent his nature and all the otherising that comes along with it.

Offline Con

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Re: Reread
« Reply #11 on: October 23, 2016, 08:26:26 AM »
That's a good point. I hadn't considered the practical effects of the beserker rage Warriorborn have. I can imagine a gentlemen like Benedict who values honour disliking being compared to barbarity or loss of control that could hurt someone, because of things out of his control.


Offline Con

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Re: Reread
« Reply #12 on: October 23, 2016, 11:16:57 AM »
Ok So am 540 pages in.

Bridget hasn't been useless, but she has put herself in more harm than good getting herself captured yet again, then again one could say it was necessary to find the Aurorans and Silkweavers hideout so all for the better I suppose.

Benedict lasted a hell of a long time with the poison in his blood.

It annoys me when there are great libraries in fiction that are created purely for the purpose of them being burnt down. I would have preferred it if had remained a resource which Gwendolyn and the Etherialist and even Grimm could return to study various subject of importance. Rather than just one important Index.

Though Miss Cavendish does certainly believe that there is something "In Heaven" that can be signalled or sent a message by burning the Library and the Wayist temple down.

The Builders mostly are referred to as having created Spirestone which is inflammable and for designing the spire.

Further thought on Grimm's Ex-Wife of the Mistshark it's the second time I've read a Steampunk book about a pirate captain whose ex-wife is a Pirate captain whose his enemy. The First being The Tales of the Ketty Jay. Is it a popular trope?

Just about to enjoy the major airship battle between the Predator and the Itasca and then I'll be done but wanted to report in first.

Offline Con

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Re: Reread
« Reply #13 on: October 24, 2016, 02:14:40 AM »
Final thoughts.

The airship battle was brilliantly described now I can't decide if I'd want the Predator or the Itasca more.

Loved Folly's interaction with the ship.

Folly's vision at the end is suitably dark and ominous though I hope Predator will be able to recover from the burning she describes.

Given Grimm's reaction to Addisons suggestion that the Prisoners of War should be set to work at the base of the Spire and that we know there are many Warriorborn there already. I think It's safe to assume you were right Quantus. Warriorborn may be delegated to the worst positions society has to offer.

Edit: Given the number of losses Albion took at the shipyard at Habble Landing both economically and populace wise. Aurora definitely has the upper hand. I hope Albion gains the support of Olympia. I don't think ALbion could take on both Aurora and Olympia.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2016, 02:18:05 AM by Con »

Offline Rygar

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Re: Reread
« Reply #14 on: October 25, 2016, 01:43:35 AM »
I think a prisoner working at the base of the Spire and a Warriorborn citizen might be very different.  I can imagine Warriorborn earn a good living gathering expensive surface raw materials, whereas if you were put down there as a part of a prison labor detail you wouldn't fair nearly so well.