Kushiel’s Dart Readalong Week Two
Together with a whole bunch of cool ladies, I’m reading Kushiel’s Dart by Jacqueline Carey. The idea is that we read a few chapters each week, answering questions about those chapters, and working our way through the book like this. This week we read chapter 9 to 18. We’ve just started, so if you’d like to join in, I think you still can! This week’s host is Tethyan Books.
1. In these chapters, Phèdre finally gets to have her own dedication ceremony. Were you surprised by what they did with the dove? Also, do you think it is fair to ask people to make a life decision about serving Naamah at such a young age?
For me, there were to choices. Either they’d kill the dove or they’d let it fly. Since the temple thing had a hole in the roof, letting it fly seemed the more likely option. Although it’s done before, I enjoyed the symbolism.
Though letting people decide on such an important matter might seem a bit harsh, it’s not much different from what teens have to do in our society. In the Netherlands kids have to choose a school level at twelve, and their “profile” at fifteen. These choices determine your life just as much as serving Naamah does.
2. Sex ed is definitely different in Terre d’Ange. Do you think the Showing was useful for the teenagers? Do you think, at their age, you would have appreciated something like the book-learning they received in the art?
Ha, I kept thinking the Showing was basically like showing kids porn in sex ed class. It must be quite awkward to sit there watching people get at it.
3. Hyacinthe has some neat theories about Delauney’s past. What is your favorite theory?
I don’t really have a theory about Delauney, except that he might have really been in love with that princess lady person. Was she a princess? Queen? I can’t believe I forgot, ha.
4. Phèdre seems to be making a name for herself as an anguissette, known for never giving the signale. Do you think she would ever actually choose to use the signale, even if she were in real danger? Do you think her inability to do so might get her into trouble?
I think she would be too late to give the signale. She wouldn’t recognize the danger before she could no longer do so. I’m sure it’ll go wrong soon enough.
That being said, I liked that the story incorporated a safe word.
5. Do you think Alcuin is enjoying his career as much as Phèdre, or do you think he has a different focus? Do you think their differing appeals and tastes will drive them apart?
Alcuin seems to like it all, but I don’t think he’s really all that into it. He seems more interested in the spying than serving Naamah, while Phedre isn’t all that into the political conniving. When something happens to Delauney, I don’t think they’re going to stick together for long. It’s their common purpose that keeps them together for now.
My thoughts on this week’s reading
Phedre’s first adventure as servant of Naamah (read BDSM sex slave) wasn’t all that exciting. I’m having a hard time truly grasping what the political intrigue is and why we should care. I already finished this week’s reading on Tuesday though, so the pages are turning quite quickly. Onwards!