Kushiel’s Scion by Jacqueline Carey, Readalong week No.1

559172Today is week one of our readalong for Kushiel’s Scion.

If you’re interested in joining the readalong the details and other participants are below.  This is a nice gentle readalong and as this is the start of a new series I don’t believe it’s necessary to have read the first three books by this author – so, if you want to read some Jacqueline Carey this could be just the incentive and time for you to jump on board.  Feel free to join in and obviously, if you haven’t read this series but are intending to do so please be aware of spoilers – because they’re running amok below


Now, to the Q&A:
1) Throughout this section, we relearn the events of the first trilogy through Imriel’s eyes. What do you think of his perceptions of those events? 

I think he remembered it all very well to be honest and it made for a really very good recap.  I found it odd at first that Imriel was narrating – even though I knew that was going to be the case – so at first it was a bit jolting to hear him say things about Phedre or Joscelin.  I needed to shake myself to bring me out of it.  I thought it was really intriguing to hear his side of things too.  His earlier years spent in innocence before he was abducted and then the horrible time afterwards.  If nothing else being in Imriel’s head also reinforced the fact that he was completely unaware of his mother’s plans and schemes and also blissfully unaware of his own inheritance.  I was also intrigued about his thoughts on Ysandre.  It was only a fleeting thought but I would say he doesn’t seem too enamoured of her which I found rather intriguing.

2) What do you think is in Melisande’s letters? How did she escape and who do you think assisted her this time?

I worry about these letters and also about the fact that they’re still being kept.  I just find it very difficult to believe anything Melisande says or does and so can’t help wondering if there will be some secret subtext hidden amongst the seemingly innocent.  As to how she escaped.  Well, she doesn’t seem to find it difficult to bend people to her will.  Plus, she had a following all of her very own!  It wouldn’t surprise me if there was something larger going on though.  Her disappearing at a time when Imriel is almost of an age – she’s clearly still plotting to put him on the throne and there are plenty amongst her former house who would benefit if she succeeds.

3) What do think about how Imriel handled Maslin of Lombelon? Has he made an ally or a foe for the future?

I’d like to think he’d made a friend by acting so kindly and thoughtfully.  The other side of me though thinks that it would be very easy for somebody – a certain somebody – to manipulate that situation and misuse Imriel’s obvious liking for Maslin to encourage a friendship between the two.  A friendship that was actually a bit duplicitous.  We’ll see.

4) There’s a few moments of foreshadowing in this section: Elua’s priest’s words concerning finding and losing love over and over again; Alais’s dream concerning a man with two faces. Are you intrigued or just happy to zoom along at this point?

Yeah, that priest was a real bundle of laughs wasn’t he – thanks for that, very cheerful!  I’m happy to zoom along at this point although obviously my mind is racing a little bit.  There are a number of possibilities already on the horizon for Imriel so it’s going to be interesting watching it all pan out.

5) Imriel’s Shahrizai cousins (Mavros, Roshana, Baptiste) have come to visit for a summer. What are your impressions so far?

I’m not sure I trust any of them.  They all seem to be playing a game of wait and see who Imriel takes to and confides in.  They’re a  bit pushy to say the least and just a bit overly curious – I can’t help wondering if those letters are going to go missing!  Of course they could be totally innocent and just purely wanting to get to know another member of their family.  I really do wonder though at the reasons for them being there at all and I’m sort of with Joscelin on the whole affair.  It smells suspicious to me and the timing of it all is too much of a coincidence.

What a great start – there was a bit of recapping but I found it really enjoyable especially as we were getting the story from another narrator.  I really liked gaining an insight into Imriel and his thoughts, fears and wishes.

I also thought it was great to see the family dynamic that Phedre, Joscelin and Imriel share – I really liked that and the fact that they gave him such a happy stable home.

Here is the current schedule:

Week 1: Prologue-chpt. 11, post on Sunday Jan 3rd, hosted by Dab of Darkness
Week 2: Chpts. 12-19, Jan 10th, hosted by Tethyan Books
Week 3: Chpts. 20-27, Jan 17th, hosted by Emma Wolf
Week 4: Chpts. 28-36, Jan  24th, hosted by Over the Effing Rainbow
Week 5: Chpts. 37-44, Jan 31st, hosted by Lynn’s Book Blog
Week 6: Chpts. 45-52, Feb 7th, hosted by Dab of Darkness
Week 7: Chpts. 53-60,  Feb 14th, hosted by Tethyan Books
Week 8: Chpt. 61-End, Feb 21st, hosted by Emma Wolf

And here is the current list of participators:
Allie at Tethyan Books
Lisa at Over the Effing Rainbow
Lynn at Lynn’s Book Blog
Emily at Emma Wolf
Susan at Dab of Darkness

10 Responses to “Kushiel’s Scion by Jacqueline Carey, Readalong week No.1”

  1. Lisa (@EffingRainbow)

    Imriel’s impression of Ysandre is definitely fascinating. It is easy to see how she could be perceived as less than perfectly warm and welcoming, especially in her Queen Mode… I don’t think she’s likely to be cruel to him but it’s not impossible that her pragmatism might be seen as hurtful in his eyes…

    And we agree about the Shahrizai cousins. I don’t trust them, even if there are logical reasons for them to be a part of Imri’s life. Approach with caution!

    • @lynnsbooks

      That’s why it’s so good to read from a different pov. I like Ysandre and she has a lot to deal with – but sometimes she can seem very cold. I was a bit taken aback by her less than welcoming embrace when the three returned home – and I understand that she has to be seen to save face, so Imriel certainly can’t have taken that very well. Particularly when you also throw into the mix that Phedre and Joscelin rescued him.
      The Shahrizai – we need to keep our eyes on them I think!
      Lynn 😀

  2. nrlymrtl

    I too find Imri’s fleeting thoughts on the Queen to be interesting. I wonder if he has a mild issue with authority figures after all the crap he went through, and then to come home to Terre D’Ange and have the Queen so angry with his chosen parents….

    That’s a good point about the timing of Melisande’s disappearance. Imri is 14 I think and he will reach his majority in… is it 2 years or 4 years? Hmmm… Anyway, it’s enough time for Melisande to set up shop someplace else and start putting things in motion.

    Yep… the Shahrizai. Can they ever be trusted? They are definitely Family First and the realm second.

    • @lynnsbooks

      Haha – I can’t believe how quickly this book has started off. There has been some recapping but I enjoyed reading it from Imriel’s pov and it reveals other tidbits – such as the way he was thinking about Ysandre.
      I actually don’t trust anybody – and suspect everybody! Which is not good. I need to wind my neck in.
      The Shahrizai – definitely can’t trust them – although I suppose they could be a red herring.
      Lynn 😀

      • nrlymrtl

        The first time I read this, I suspected everyone except Phedre and Joscelin. Even other good guys have political ties, etc.

      • @lynnsbooks

        I know – I’m like a maniac jumping about from suspect to suspect – I like that Carey can make me feel like that.
        Lynn 😀

      • Lisa (@EffingRainbow)

        Devious writer is devious! This is why I love Carey’s books. 😀

      • @lynnsbooks

        That exactly! 😀 😀

  3. tethyanbooks

    It was interesting to see his perspective on Ysandre. Phedre had a longstanding friendship with her before their cold reception back with Imriel. Without that background, it must have seemed to Imriel that she was indifferent to the suffering they’d gone through.

    So far Maslin seems pretty honest to me– but maybe I’m erring on the other side. I trust everybody! Nothing can possibly go wrong with that approach :D.

    • @lynnsbooks

      Yeah, – I’ve probably not been very clear. I think Maslin seems like a good character, if a bit angry about the way things have panned out. I wonder if that makes him an easy target for somebody to manipulate and poor poison into his ear – or even just more gently use him – even to draw Imriel out somehow.
      I must admit that I didn’t like Ysandre’s behaviour – at first – but, I understand why she was acting like that. A bit different for Imriel given his age and everything he’d already been through.
      I’m so untrusting! I”m jumping all over the place accusing everyone in the book – that Carey *shakes fist*
      Lynn 😀

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