The Shadow of the Sun Read Along, Part 1

This week is the start of the Shadow of Sun Read along being hosted by Dab of Darkness.  The schedule is here, a giveaway here and more about the book here.  For the first week we’ve read Chapters 1-7 and as this is my first read I’m still finding my feet with the whys and wherefores so I’m not going to blabber on here but get straight to the Q&A.  If you haven’t read The Shadow of the Sun then it’s definitely not too late to start, in fact, now is the perfect time to enjoy it with others.   Beware of spoilers from here on in.

Straight off, our hero Ellion Tellan insults one of his few friends, Coran Mourne, the new righ of Ilesia, by refusing his offer to become his War-Lord. What do you think of Ellion’s choice? I think he made a good decision – the clue is in the title – War Lord – sounds like danger money is going to be involved, lots of it!  Only kidding – he’s trying to keep a low profile after all isn’t he.  Also, don’t go making rash offers if you don’t want to be turned down.  Otherwise that’s not called an offer – it’s called an instruction.

Throughout these first few chapters, we have hints of Ellion’s past, which are wrapped up in his desperate attempts to avoid the summons of the Aballo Order for the Grand Moot. Any guesses about what is driving him to avoid the Moot?  Okay, well, reading so far it seems to me that Ellion has done something BAD (that’s right all with shoutie caps lock on).  I’m guessing that he’s killed someone, accidentally maybe, but come on, that’s not much comfort to the one who’s dead!  Or he thinks he’s killed somebody and has ran for the hills in shame (but maybe it wasn’t as bad as he thought).  Anyway, he certainly believes he’s done something bad and as he’s not using magic I have to imagine it involved magic gone wrong – perhaps he became too arrogant and went too far.

In many ways, Letitia is the most approachable of the Tana. Yet, still Ellion feels like he is swimming through foreign territory, never certain of where the taboo sink holes are. As a reader, how is this working for you? 

Well, it would be quite easy to assume that the Tana are just a bit rude but at the end of the day, so far, Ellion has brought an assassin down on them, and if they were at all suspicious they could probably be forgiven for thinking he’s the one attracting all the trouble especially as it all seems to have started as he appeared.  Or, conversely, maybe the Tana are all a bit standoffish (including Letitia who is only being nice to Ellion because she has a big crush on him and thinks no one has noticed).  I think they’re behaving the way you would expect – a bit wary, closing ranks and keeping their secrets and of course they think they’re the superior race.

Two assassination attempts in 7 chapters, in the same house. First, what do you make of Tanaan security? Second, it’s early, but what are some of your guesses as to who or why someone wants Ellion dead? 

Well, Tanaan security is about as much use as a chocolate toothbrush – great if you want to end up being assassinated or have rotten teeth!  Maybe they’re a very civilised race of people who don’t much resort to violence – and maybe that’s why they’ve adapted their telepathy.  At first I wondered if the Assassin was in the wrong room – wasn’t Ellion up a level from everyone else – so I wondered if it was by accident – however, maybe he was put on a different level on purpose.  Also, how would the assassin know exactly where to find him.  This makes me think that it’s one of the Tanaan – but they don’t seem to have a purpose.  The only other thing that I can think of is that somebody wants to make sure for certain that he doesn’t turn up at the moot.  Okay, clearly I don’t have a clue.

The Tana have telepathy. Ellion is left to guess whether or not Rishan and his daughter Letitia are broadcasting on purpose. What do you think? If our society had the same ability, do you think you would get caught up in a telepathic shouting match across a crowded room?

I don’t think that Rishan and his daughter have the first notion that Ellion can hear them.  In fact I think they will be mortified with embarrassment if they find out – I’m thinking Letitia might find out at a very inopportune moment!  I think it would be brilliant and yet terrible if we could communicate with telepathy!  No where to hide – it’s a bit like the idea of having phones with screens – imagine?  No more pulling your face when somebody you don’t want to talk to calls.  Telepathy would be like that.  If your friend has her hair cut and looks hideous – no hiding behind a little white lie!!

The Tana have a different reproductive cycle than us humans. How do you see this affecting Tanaan-human relationships?

I suppose living so long it’s just as well that they can’t reproduce more often – the planet would be overrun.  I can’t help thinking that this frees them up to do whatever they want for a good proportion of the time (with no worries about possible buns in overs!)  However, not sure how this would work between Tanaan-human affairs – after all humans don’t live quite as long.

Letitia and her retinue are attacked twice by Basghilae – the walking dead – once near the river on her way home and second at home as she is readying to depart. Are you convinced that they are the work of Banbagor due to some nebulous, unknown grievance?

I don’t think the Basghilae are the work of Banbagor.  I mean, if you have a grievance it doesn’t really seem like a good idea to set the walking dead on a whole bunch of people and kill them – there’s not much room for discussion after that is there.  Even if Letitia goes to Banbagor now she’s going to have the hump before any attempt at a parley even begins.  I don’t think it’s going to be as easy as that.  And I’m curious where the idea that it was Banbagor came from in the first place – I think somebody is spinning a fib.

Anyway, that’s the first week – don’t forget you’re not too late to join in!  You know you want to.

10 Responses to “The Shadow of the Sun Read Along, Part 1”

  1. nrlymrtl

    Hmmm….I want a chocolate toothbrush. Of course, it means I can’t give up using my plastic one… but a chocolate one to start the day would be nice.

    Yes, I agree. Once you have sicced the walking dead on someone, there really isn’t much room for discussion. So, why would Letitia think this Banbagor thing is legit? Perhaps she is young in Tanaan ways and rather gullible? Perhaps her raging hormones are clouding her thoughts.

    Oh yes, I do dread the impending days of phones with screens. No one needs to call me at home and see what I am really up to while they chatter away at me. Do they really need to know that I am not giving them my undivided attention? really, only a handful of folks need to know what a suave multitasker I am.

    • lynnsbooks

      Yes, Letitia is still young in actions and inexperienced – her thoughts are definitely clouded by hormones and I’m not sure that Ellion is helping matters. I wonder now whether everybody except Ellion could hear the private telepathic conversation – everyone would assume he couldn’t listen in.
      Lynn 😀

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  3. Amy

    Chocolate toothbrush?! Sign me up.

    The more I think about it, the more Letitia can be be overrun by hormones and isn’t thinking clearly. That would explain a few things but we’ll see how she gets on in the next few chapters. I’m willing to giver her a bit of wiggle room. And you’re right, once you send the walking dead to kill someone, all bets are off.

    • lynnsbooks

      I liked the way Letitia lost her cool when she was told somebody had actually sent the walking dead to kill her. She started to squeak a bit where previously she’d been telling herself how to behave and what was and was not appropriate.
      Lynn 😀

  4. suecccp

    1. Oh, so you think he was just being a coward?? 😀

    2. It seems like his mistake caused his parent’s deaths, but indirectly. I can see how that might be a little upsetting.

    3. I think your assessment of the Tana is spot on (especially Letitia). I know that Rishan is supposed to be slightly crazy at the moment, but he did call Ellion an ‘animal’ . . .

    4. I would like to add a chocolate fireguard and a chocolate teapot to your toothbrush . . . why is chocolate always judged to be a useless item? I like your point about the second assassin perhaps being sent by one of the Tanaan: Letitia’s fiance seems a little miffed about Ellion’s manly manliness being so close to his intended.

    7. I agree: where did that rumor come from?

    • lynnsbooks

      Ha ha, I don’t know whether I think he’s a coward – he certainly rushed headlong into the fray to help Letitia after all. I think he’s trying to avoid being noticed but clearly that’s not working as he now has two assassins who have successfully tracked him down.
      I would be a little upset if somebody killed me accidentally – in fact I’m not sure if that’s not even worse, you know, ‘OMG I killed the wrong person’ – not much comfort in that.
      I think Rishan comes across as very superior – and considering Ellion saved his daughter you’d think he would be a little nicer – perhaps he sent the walking dead after her and is royally naffed off with Ellion’s interference.
      Chocolate – it’s very good for you, releases pheremones or some sort of ‘mones’ – which is the ONLY reason why I eat it and I defy anyone to prove otherwise.
      Lynn 😀

  5. barbarafriendish

    I don’t know how I managed to miss your post last week! So very glad to catch up now. I think I need a chocolate toothbrush, too. 🙂

    Thank you for taking the time and trouble to play on this read-along! I am truly enjoying your thoughts.

    • lynnsbooks

      Yes, I seem to have hit on something there – I’m sure everyone’s dentist would thank me as well!!
      Thanks for stopping by. It’s certainly very thought provoking – as you can probably tell I don’t have the first notion what’s actually going on! But, that’s really part of the fun.
      Lynn 😀

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