OT _The Thief_ - SPOILERS... + QofA

Venkarel venkarel.geo at yahoo.com
Fri Mar 8 13:56:05 EST 2002

--- Anita Graham <amgraham at cygnus.uwa.edu.au> wrote:

> > But what about Gen's taking the stone from the
> mage and hiding it in his
> > hair without telling the reader, allowing the
> reader to believe it's been
> > lost?  In omnisecent voice that would be fine, but
> in a first person that
> > strikes me as somehow selling the reader short.
> I admit I do just accept it, but if you go back, he
> does tell you quite a
> bit of what he's doing. You know he's got two
> leather thongs for instance,
> and has only used one (the longer) to plait his
> hair. And when they see the
> Attolian soldiers he writes "The magus and I were
> nearly knee to knee ahead
> of the others. I dragged the reins of my horse over
> to one side, and it
> stumbled into the horse beside it. I brushed
> shoulders with the Magus for
> just a moment..."
> Also, although its the Thief who draws the magus'
> attention to the loss of
> the gift, he never seems particularly upset about
> its loss.

I agree, I don't see this as a cheat, or if it is,
it's Gen doing the cheating.  I always imagine him
telling this story at a bar or something.  I never
quite got over how he ended up in the King's prison,
even if it *was* part of the plan.

> But, to continue to Queen of Attolia (have you found
> it and read it yet,
> Ros?)
> spoiler space
> warning... real spoilers ahead


> And then, I ask (myself, as well as you), was Q of A
> really a great book. I
> know lots of dwjers have said it was even better
> than Thief, but I didn't
> feel that way at the end, myself. Sure the ending
> was foreshadowed, even in
> Thief, but, WHY did you think it was so wonderful?

All I can say about _The Thief_ is that I felt
cheated, not because I thought the author was
cheating, but because I couldn't stand Gen through the
first half of the book.  I saw all those flashes of a
different Gen from my preconceptions, but all I had to
go on was what he revealed, and he was far too cocky
and complained too much about things that I felt he
deserved because of his provocativeness.  I did like
the background and the gods and I was interested in
the story, so I continued reading.  But since I'm
usually more into cheering for the characters than
really worrying about the plot, so I felt cheated.  I
*liked* the Gen near the end of the book much better.

And I definitely liked him in _Queen of Attolia_.  And
I appreciated the characterization of Attolia.  She
does seem cruel and cold and she has done terrible
things, but she doesn't do it out of maliciousness,
but out of necessity.  I empathized with her hatred
for Eddis because I've felt that way before, warning
someone about something that I've had a bad experience
about, and then realizing that my advice was perfectly
worthless and unnecessary to them because they're
doing just fine.

If I had the books with me, I'd reread the parts about
the gods.  I liked the one myth that Gen shared.  I
remember thinking that it reminded me of the gods from
Lois McMaster Bujold's _Curse of Chalion_, but I don't
remember why. 

(who needs to get her own copy of QofA)

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