Naamah’s Curse (Naamah Trilogy #2) by Jacqueline Carey read-along final week

Today is the final week of our readalong for Naamah’s Curse, No.2 in Jacqueline Carey’s Naamah Trilogy.  The details and schedule are here and below is a little about the book.

Jacqueline Carey, New York Times bestselling author of the Kushiel’s Legacy series, delivers book two in her new lushly imagined trilogy featuring daughter of Alba, Moirin.

Far from the land of her birth, Moirin sets out across Tatar territory to find Bao, the proud and virile Ch’in fighter who holds the missing half of her diadh-anam, the divine soul-spark of her mother’s people. After a long ordeal, she not only succeeds, but surrenders to a passion the likes of which she’s never known. But the lovers’ happiness is short lived, for Bao is entangled in a complication that soon leads to their betrayal.

The questions and answers are below (hosted this week by me) – be warned that spoilers may be lurking.


What did you make of the mission to retrieve the black diamond and what do you actually make of the black diamond and whether it could be used for good?

This part of the story made me smile to be honest because the way everyone spoke of the black diamond put me in mind of Lord of the Rings and the way everyone spoke of the ‘one ring’ – you cannot wield it!  Apparently it doesn’t seem as though the diamond could be put to use – it feels like it manipulates the person who holds it and exaggerates there emotions to a heightened degree.  I thought the mission to retrieve the diamond went remarkably well in fact much smoother than I anticipated – I think I expected much more trouble somehow but it seemed like Jagrati and her falconer had a much smaller contingent surrounding them than I had imagined.  I must admit that when Jagrati poisoned herself I half wondered if she’d taken a potion that mimics death and was going to wake up and escape!  I obviously have too active an imagination because it was much more straightforward.

The Spider Queen and Amrita – what were your final thoughts on both of them – did you have sympathy for Jagrati?  Do you think Amrita can affect change in the caste system?

I couldn’t help feel a little bit sad for Jagrati in some respects and I couldn’t help but wonder if the black diamond had had a detrimental effect on her.  That being said – she behaved very badly and let herself be twisted by anger and hate.  Amrita on the other hand is like the opposite, she’s very calm and gentle seeming.  She has had the privilege of course of being born into a very favourable caste so hasn’t suffered in quite the same way and I suppose you could question the fact that she never saw the unreasonable treatment of the untouchables until Moirin pointed it out.  I think Amrita can start to instigate changes, I think there will be plenty of resistance, a little of which we already read about, but eventually things could change.

Moirin and Bao – they’ve made peace with each other.  Did you finally forgive Bao?  Do you think they’ve reached an understanding that will work for them?

I think I finally did forgive Bao – he explained himself well I thought and he did go through a lot in the first place simply trying to find Moirin.  I liked that he actually set out to rescue her and I thought they were very honest with each other which is a great start.  They also seem to have come to a better place in terms of sharing the diadh-anam which was good to see.

Finally – any predictions for where the journey will take us next? Can you see a purpose in Moirin’s diadh-anam??

Other than suspecting we will eventually come full circle with Moirin returning to deal with Raphael de Mereliot I’m not sure at this point where the rest of the journey will take us – but, yes, I think Moirin will have to return to see if Raphael does still have a demon possessing him.  On reflection this story is almost like a coming of age story for Moirin – like her entire journey has really been about finding herself, of course she’s helped others along the way and I found it interesting that the journey and the events involved seemed to revolve very strongly around religion and the ways in which it can be distorted or corrupted.  I’m looking forward to seeing what happens next.

Alli at Tethyan Books
Lynn at Lynn’s Book Blog
Grace at Books Without Any Pictures
Susan at Dab of Darkness

3 Responses to “Naamah’s Curse (Naamah Trilogy #2) by Jacqueline Carey read-along final week”

  1. nrlymrtl

    After the trickery of Black Sleeve in Chi’in at the end of the battle, I can see why you suspected Jagrati might have been faking the poisoning.

    I forgive Bao too. He’s gone through hell to find Moirin since he finally decided he wanted to be with her. It made me think a little of Joscelin explaining to Imriel that he once tried living without Phedre and that’s how he knew deep down that he couldn’t.

    Yes, this book has seen Moirin really testing her faith and deciding what she really believes in as there are so many examples of people abusing their faith or turning a blind eye to how parts of it are corrupted to excuse a misdeed (like the untouchables caste).

    • @lynnsbooks

      I was also thinking of the same thing about Joscelin – I couldn’t remember the scene exactly but I remember they went through a spell where it didn’t look like they’d be able to live with each other because of their differences but I remembered Joscelin couldn’t do without Phedre.
      Lynn 😀

  2. Allie

    I’m making my very late rounds around these final posts :).

    I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who thought of the One Ring with the way they talked about the diamond! I had some sympathy for Jagrati as well, and I hadn’t really considered that the diamond might have been affecting her judgement. It was a shame her life was as bad as it was, and that she used it to make life worse for others.

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