Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Literary Feast: The Warrior Heir Discussion Chapters 12 through 18

*SPOILERS BELOW!* On to Dessert!

MONICA: Isn’t Hastings a jerk? I don’t know if you’re to the part where Jack’s mom is kidnapped by Hastings and held as a crazy tweaky slave to use as blackmail against Jack, but… I feel like… I don’t know… I feel like Jack would have eventually gone along with him even if Hastings *didn’t* have his mother holed up in his castle of doom. Jack has, throughout this story, seemed entirely too reasonable about everything. Hastings should have just walked up to him all serious-like and said, “Look Jack, I hate to do this to you, but at SOME point one of the Roses is going to catch you. I can’t protect you all the time, your aunt is, let’s face it, perhaps the most useless person in the entire world, and Nick doesn’t run all that fast. I’ve devised a plan that will not only allow me to have my revenge on the person who vaporized my sister (DAMN YOU WYLIE) but also has the additional benefit of keeping you alive for always and eternity. I’m not saying it won’t be dangerous, but it’s the only chance you have.” There would have been no betrayal, no “omg mommy!”… there might still have been Linda rushing in to flail ineffectually, but all in all it would have been a much better scenario, and Hastings could have maintained some modicum of not being a total sleazebag.

SHEL: I wanted to like Hastings. I really did. Nothing like those men who are emotionally unavailable due to their undying quest for revenge. And I totally like the way he took out the whatchamacallsits...the traders. But then it became clear he was using Jack a little too much. and I absolutely HATED with several 8888s, the way he manipulated Jack's mom. If he'd given the speech you typed above. He could have regained a little of my affection. I won't type love there. Any man who manipulates women into docility within a castle of doom and makes her go for long nature walks with him is a poop forever.

MONICA: Don’t forget the way she’d stare in an oddly longing way at him after they all got home. Stockholm Syndrome!

SHEL: Ick! He slept with your sister!!!!!!!!

MONICA: Gaaah. In other news, I hate the ghosts. I hate the ghosts and their deus ex machine ability to sway the course of the entire plot. Plus, they just confuse me. Is there a waiting room full of dead warriors? They take a ticket and when their number comes up they’re the next person to get summoned? I realize the wizards are powerful but doesn’t exerting complete control even in the afterlife seem a little over the top? *Especially* since the warriors were there unwillingly in the first place? If I was a ghost, I don’t care what kind of shackles were trying to bind me, I’d be the heck out of Dodge and on towards Valhalla, cosmic waiting rooms be darned.

SHEL: I'll admit I did like the end where they stood up for ghosty-rights. But then, I'm always a fan of the powerless popping out of a giant fake birthday cake and saying "surprise, we're going to kick your ass now!" But I did need the ghosts to be more of a presence early on, especially in Ohio. I know there were a few fights, briefly described. But it wasn't enough for me. Part of that could also be the fact that I wanted Ohio to be more of a magical place, though.
Why can't writers just make Ohio a magical land, instead of it only having magic because of Europe. Ohio=Fantastical!
Don't laugh at me and my sad mid-western fantasy hopes for my state!

MONICA: Okay, but didn’t you think that the whole, “OOOOOH WE ARE THE DRAGON!?” thing was a little… off? Don’t get me wrong, ghost attacks can be cool when they’re done right. I squealed like a the little fangirl I am when Aragon and his Ghost Army rode all over the place out of nowhere in LotR. Here, though, they just… showed up? And in four pages, everything was wrapped up and it was over? I realize there was a little bit of slaughter as they rushed the field, but the entire thing would have made an extremely anticlimactic letter home. “Dear Mom, I’m coming back from England soon! There was a semi-big fight and Ellen Stephenson decided not to kill me, so that’s good. Then a trillion ghost warriors swarmed us!!! They got me a chair. Then they helped us set up a new set of laws and there was much voting and signing of paper. And then they faded away again and also the food tents disappeared which sucked because I was hungry. Love, your kind of blah son Jack.”
(I just about died during that superawkward reunion between Susannah and Hastings, though. Were you a little creeped out by the fact that he has her warrior stone in a *ring* on his *hand*? The stone which he wrenched from her bleeding corpse? Really, Hastings, flowers say just as much, without the psychotic overtones.)

HOWEVER. Despite all this loathing, I’m growing fonder and fonder of the side characters. Will and whats-his-name, still going strong! That cute little ghost fur trapper? Adorable! I just wish that, you know, all those main characters didn’t keep getting in the way and driving me nuts.

SHEL: MMM, LotR! Now I want to watch the ghosty winning goodness! Mmm...Aragon...FOCUS BRAIN!

See, I'm still "meh" with all of the secondary characters. Part of my problem is still the fact that EVERYONE is introduced by their names instead of their relationship to Jack. (I'm looking at you what's her face, and that other woman, who I prefer to think of as Jack's aunt and Jack's mom) I wanted to like Ellen. Excuse me, Ellen Stephenson????, as she is always called...but I didn't see enough of her early on. Due to my inability to remember names, the plot went from casual mention of her, casual mention of her, Jack SUPER DUPER lurves her--say what? Now she's a warrior? WTF? NOT ENOUGH HINTS!

MONICA: Oh my gosh, you’re so right! I never even noticed that she was always referred to by her first and last names! Perhaps there are many Ellens in Ohio? But yes, Ellen Stephenson was ridiculous. She’s also the kind of significant other your parents are pretty much honor-bound to warn you about. What? Your girlfriend has limited experience with normal social interactions? She’s been hauled all over the world since infancy learning to kill? You think you can *fix* her? Bad choice, bucko. Bad choice.

Feel free to leave more of your thoughts about the books in the comments! Is any one going to go on and read the rest of the series? Has any one already read them? We wanna read what you have to say!

Also, stay tuned, because we're going to do a final summary review of The Warrior Heir soon and introduce our second literary Feast book!


  1. Hello all, I've enjoyed reading your thoughts on The Warrior Heir. I've read all three books and the third, The Dragon Heir, was my favorite. Each book has a different narrator, or two, so if you're sick of the main characters in the first one, you don't have to deal with them as much later on. Just my two cents!

  2. Oh fantastic! Not that I wouldn't love two more books about Jack, but... a new point of view is always a good thing. ;)

    Are they new characters, or does she just play around more with the ones we already know?

  3. Lots of new ones in the second book that eventually run into the Ohio group, then tying up ends with them all in the third. Hastings and Linda get more tolerable also :)

  4. That is *all* I ask.

    ::: shakes fist at Hastings :::



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