Kushiel’s Mercy (Imriel’s Trilogy #3) by Jacqueline Carey readalong final week
Today is the final week of our readalong for Kushiel’s Mercy by Jacqueline Carey. This week Susan at Dab of Darkness is hosting. Beware of spoilers because they’ll be lurking. Now, over to the Q&A.
1) We talked last week a bit about the charm Imriel put on Sidonie so she could maintain her own will. Did it work as well as you expected? Less or more? Is there anything more they could have done with these charms?
Mmm, an intriguing question. The spell was just not of the same strength as the ensorcelling I suppose – or looked at another way it couldn’t be sustained in the face of such an overwhelming strength of support. So many people all suffering under the same delusion – difficult to not succumb – even Durstan fell back under the spell. Interesting that Sidonie’s will power weakened when Imriel was finally sent away and she lost her final support. The pieces of thread that were used in the spell seemed very flimsy but Imriel was using what he knew. I wonder if there would have been something more substantial that the spell could have used – like leather bracelets or something else – although I don’t suppose that would have made the spell any stronger. I was thinking of the spell that ensorcelled the city – I couldn’t help wondering though – surely there must have been some people who didn’t fall under – somebody who missed the spectacle as it were?
2) Mavros as part of the Queen’s Guard! Was that a surprise to you? Were you surprised by any other characters in this weird, corrupted version of the City of Elua?
I don’t think it did surprise me. After all, everyone was suffering the same delusion so it makes sense that they all rallied round. It was so awful watching these characters behave like this. Durstan and Joscelin were the most surprising for me I think – they were just so different and out of character!
3) In a desperate moment, Imriel seems to be filled with the light of the 13, or at least Elua, until he’s knocked out. Do you think it was Elua answering his prayers sideways?
It was such a strange moment wasn’t it. I think it was the Gods helping. Lateral thinking. This way he got to look at the problem from a different angle (literally) and as everyone else then left he only had to subdue Joscelin (not as easy as it sounds of course). I couldn’t help thinking they should have tied Joscelin up!
4) We have a few desperate moments once the location of the gem is revealed to Imriel – his duel with Joscelin, his ride to the square, his scramble up the tree, his taking hold of Sidonie, and the breaking of the spell, the appearance of the demon. What did you like most about these moments? Anything you didn’t like?
I thought the way the spell was broken was really well done. I was wondering how Carey would manage it to be honest. It certainly had the potential to be a bit of a let down but the whole, emerald exploding and the demon manifesting in the dirt like a little whirlwind before blasting everyone – well, it was pretty impressive actually. And I like that Carey made both Imriel and Sidonie jointly responsible for breaking the curse. I thought it was good that even though Sidonie was once again under the spell she still wanted to trust Imriel.
5) Terre D’Ange is at peace. What reconciliations stood out to you?
Well, the part I was looking forward to most was the reconciliation with Alais and her parents and to be honest I thought that was a little under played so I was a bit disappointed with that particular scene. I wanted to have a bit more of a making up scene with Ysandre and Alais.
6) Finally, we have a wedding. Perfect ending to the trilogy? Need something more? Any final questions that you want answered?
I think it was a really good ending with lots of possibility for more excitement to come. It seems like maybe Alais is being set up for a future story? I think the only thing I did want, but it seems a little like asking too much, was something more about Melisande. I think at the back of my mind I thought she would sneak into the city in disguise to observe the wedding – very unrealistic I know!! And, I know that she will never be forgiven for what she did but I think I would have liked it if Imriel and Sidonie visited her. Is that wrong?
Overall though. I loved this book and after a start where I at first felt that I still wanted to read more from Phedre and Joscelin I confess that Carey completely turned me around on that score. I loved Iriel’s adventures after all.