Conrad's Fate (with spoilers)

Kathleen Jennings kathleen.jennings at
Mon May 16 00:05:13 EDT 2005

I found it obvious, but I didn't think of Conrad as an idiot. He was just a 
kid and didn't know anything *but* to trust the adults in his family. He was 
smart in his own way, working out small rebellions. His uncle's obvious, 
simple betrayal was worse because it was obvious and simple and deliberately 
taking advantage of a child's incredulity. Conrad has to grow up and learn 
that the people in his life have deceived and hurt him, but he manages to do 
that without becoming too bitter and twisted.
 I agree about some of the most interesting things happening off-stage, but 
I always find that with DWJ. No matter how fascinating the book, it seems 
that there is always something even better happening in the wings - 
elaborate mythologies that walk briefly through the book with a smell of 
snow, passionate romances which no-one hears about until they're sealed, 
treachery and politics behind closed doors and marvelous characters who 
appear for a scene but so obviously have marvelous stories of their own 
which we don't get told. Frustrating, but wonderfully so.
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