So here we are at the final week! And let me say that it actually took me a couple of days to sit down and do the discussion part of the read along, because well… I am sure that I am the odd one out. The ending wasn’t what I was hoping for but I couldn’t decide if that was a good or bad thing. Once again, if you want to find other opinions, learn more about Wyrd & Wonder (which has officially come to a close) check out Imyril’s blog There’s Always Room for one More.

Let’s Go!


Lin’s a construct, Bayan’s a construct, the people on Maila Isle are constructs…. Let’s talk about constructs! We now know far more, but still not enough. What are your thoughts and feelings on the nature of constructs?

I have to be honest and say that I am not sure how I feel about this. I am not sure if this is lazy writing or if it’s something that goes deeper and there’s a bigger purpose. Now don’t misunderstand me, I am not wanting the author to spoon feed me, or hold my hand while I get to where she’d leading. But, I would kind of like to know the reason behind some -ok a lot- of the choices that were made. What does it mean that Sand is having memories of being with the emperor? He acts as if his wife was too far gone to do the experiment with, but her we are with Lin (named after his dead daughter) and we’re led to believe that he did an experiment that would recreate Lin into his wife’s image. But then who is Sand and what are those memories? She is now able to contemplate and participate in violence and her first thought is to head to the emperor and kill him. So is Sand a construct? Or is she the emperor’s wife that he tossed aside because he couldn’t control her? Lin has not been the most reliable person, so maybe she’s not a construct like we are led to believe. And yes, we will believe that because the emperor pretty much confirms it- but he’s dead and also not that reliable. So… the only thing I can confidently say is that we don’t know enough about the constructs.

Hot on the heels of the revelation that she was not born but made, Lin has learned why she was made *shudder*. Reaction shots, please.

My first reaction is to take everything at face value. And with that— eww. But, I don’t trust anything that Lin says or thinks that she knows. Because how can she? She doesn’t have any of her memories, and while I think that the memories were a way to control her, that leaves her with nothing. The emperor didn’t say anything about his plans and it’s just inferences about why and who she was created after. I was good with going with that until Sand. I mean if Bayan was to be the replacement for the emperor then it makes sense that the empress would have a replacement too. But to pass them off as kids and the heir? I just wish that we were able to see into the emperor’s mind, I almost wish that we had a couple of chapters from his point of view.

The Emperor is dead. (Hurray!) Phalue has successfully usurped her father as governor. (Yay?) Change is on the wind and those Alanga paintings have opened their eyes…..Care to make any predictions for what’s coming? Do you think the Alanga are really a threat?

I don’t know. I don’t want to know. I don’t not want to know. It’s not very clear -but then again nothing is. This is the problem with an unreliable narrator -everything that they know and assume is cast with an air of suspicion. The emperor is dead, but no one knows what he was up to or what exactly he did to scare away the Alanga. And if the paintings are a sign of things to come, then where did the Alanga go? Did they sink into the endless sea?

We’ve also discovered the identity of Sand. Possibly. She has memories that suggest she is Nisong, but she is a construct just like Lin. What does it all mean?? (Not a rhetorical question- please tell what it all means!)

This is a shit storm of everything that we don’t know. There I said it. WE DON’T HAVE ENOUGH INFORMATION TO MAKE ANY GUESSES OR SEE WHERE WE ARE BEING LED. And with each question that is asked and I attempt to answer, I get angrier. because it doesn’t make sense that we have read this book and still know nothing. There is nothing that we know that is 100% accurate. Except that Emahla is dead. We can’t say with any certainty that Jovis; power is connected to Mephi (or what his power his). We can’t say that the emperor was the cause of the Alanga leaving/beig destroyed. We can’t say that the Alanga have, in fact, been destroyed. Lin is supposed to be a construct made in the image of Nisong. Nisong is supposed to be dead. But Sand has memories of Nisong.

Jovis and Mephi have arrived on Imperial Island and come face to face with Line and Thrana. This is an interesting development . What are your theories on Mephi and Thrana? Also, on the emperor’s laboratory and what he was using Thrana for?

Wait for it. Are you ready? I DON’T KNOW. There are so many possibilities of what it could mean. I want to say something that will make me sound smart and insightful. But there are so many things that could happen. If we knew the motivation of just one of the characters it would help to try to put the picture together. I mean, I have not made it a secret that I want Jovis and Mephi to be the heroes of the story. I just don’t see how that will work. Stepping back and looking at how many enemies the empire has (real or imagined) paints a pretty bleak picture. You have the rebels with a leader who is known to be a liar and is tricking the people that are trusting and following him. I have no doubt that Jovis was correct and that he had sent someone to kill Phalue. (And Ranami doesn’t tell her! And while we are here- let me just say that I hate that they are still together and now Phalue feels that it’s all on her to fix things. I want her to walk away and open her eyes.) Then there are the things from Maila Isle that are now coming after the empire. Yes Nisong is angry with the emperor, but something tells me that the more that the memories return the more her goal is going to change to being the person in charge. And the Alangas- if they are a threat, and I am pretty sure that they are waking. Then you have whatever forces that have sunk the first island. Then there’s the governors who may be more ambitious now that the emperor is dead. You have the people. How long before they give Lin before they try to dethrone her while she is weak? The fact that Lin and Jovis have a common sidekick will probably change his loyalties- especially since he already distrusts Gio. And then there are the Ioph Carn, surely they will attempt to wrestle some power for themselves. It appears that everyone is coming for the empire and the empire is currently ill- prepared to handle any of it.

Always Shine!