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Mashiara Sedai

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  1. Mashiara Sedai

    DM News:Old Tongue Analysis

    Today, Tor.com released a very detailed analysis of the Old Tongue--the ancient language used during the Age of Legends. Written by Richard Littauer, who is a linguist, this article sheds some light on how Robert Jordan did follow some rules of languages and when he made them up. This was a very interesting read. Looking at the Old Tongue from an academic and historical perspective was enlightening. Though I had heard several instances of inconsistencies in the dynamics of the Old Tongue, Littauer does a great job of explaining why these phrases can't be constructed into one, cohesive language. And though Littauer concludes that Jordan was only an amateur linguist, he still sings Jordan's praises: The fact that people are still delving so deeply into The Wheel of Time amazes me. After all these years, there's still so much left to explore and ponder. View full news item
  2. Mashiara Sedai

    Old Tongue Analysis

    Today, Tor.com released a very detailed analysis of the Old Tongue--the ancient language used during the Age of Legends. Written by Richard Littauer, who is a linguist, this article sheds some light on how Robert Jordan did follow some rules of languages and when he made them up. This was a very interesting read. Looking at the Old Tongue from an academic and historical perspective was enlightening. Though I had heard several instances of inconsistencies in the dynamics of the Old Tongue, Littauer does a great job of explaining why these phrases can't be constructed into one, cohesive language. And though Littauer concludes that Jordan was only an amateur linguist, he still sings Jordan's praises: The fact that people are still delving so deeply into The Wheel of Time amazes me. After all these years, there's still so much left to explore and ponder.
  3. Mashiara Sedai

    Who's going to JordanCon 10?

    That's still amazing! I don't know if I'll have a chance to wear my White Sister outfit. I'm going to be an Asha'man and a Sul'dam. I guess I could were the Aes Sedai dress for the first half of Sunday--but I fly out on a pretty early flight and I don't want to wear it to the airport.....
  4. Mashiara Sedai

    My Asha'man Coat

    It's worth the money. It's a great convention, and there is so much to do! Everyone is so, so friendly and welcoming! Plus, you can talk about WoT with almost anyone there and they know exactly what you're talking about! (The exception being people like my mom; I might bring her with me next year, and she knows nothing about WoT, but she'd still enjoy it because she loves people.)
  5. Mashiara Sedai

    Who's going to JordanCon 10?

    What costumes will you be cosplaying, Jagen?
  6. Mashiara Sedai

    Black Tower Roll Call - March 2018

    Can I sign in even though I haven't signed in for about two years....? I don't like Spring because it means summer is close. Plus my allergies act up. But, I guess Spring Break is a good thing!
  7. Frederick "Ted" Field, an Executive Producer with Sony, may be making some announcements about the potential Wheel of Time television series in the near future. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Field's sudden luck with the successful Jumani: Welcome to the Jungle film late last year may help with developments for The Wheel of Time show. They state that Field has several big announcements coming soon, and "[o]ne of those announcements will be a television series for Wheel of Time, a fantasy series based on the work of Robert Jordan that has been compared to Game of Thrones. This franchise has been the subject of much mystery and speculation. When FXX rushed the production of a pilot and aired it at the odd hour of 1:30 am, all sorts of discussion proceeded on message boards and in the news media on whether the gambit was an attempt by one production company to hold onto rights. That led to a slander lawsuit, which was later settled. Now, Field is prepared to announce a future for Wheel of Time." Adam Whitehead laments that while Sony holds the rights, they haven't found a network to air the show, and Narg the Trolloc has an up-to-date list about who might be able to host the series once the planning stage is complete. Hopefully we'll hear something soon. We're all very anxious for any developments that lead Rand, Mat, Perrin, and all the others, closer to our TV screens.
  8. Mashiara Sedai

    Fantasy Review: Skythane

    Welcome back to another “Fantasy Review.” This edition is for J. Scott Coatsworth’s Skythane, the first in the Oberon Cycle trilogy. Slight spoilers follow. Synopsis: The planet of Oberon is missing half its mass. Some scientists speculate the other side is filled with dark matter—balancing the inhabited hemisphere and making it stable. Most citizens of Oberon don’t even think about it. For them, life continues like normal. The rich live in splendor while the poor are forced to scavenge in the Slander. Xander began his life in the Slander. Orphaned at an early age, Xander grew up on the streets—abused, neglected, and forgotten. Also against him is his heritage. He is a skythane—a race similar to humans, but with wings and the capacity of flight. The human settlers of Oberon forced the semi-native skythane out of their homes and off their land. Miraculously rescued off the streets, Xander is given a second chance at life, and a very important mission. When the planet’s main export—a drug called pith—suddenly dries up, Jameson is sent to investigate. When he lands in Oberon City, he’s suddenly wisked away by Xander, and thrown headfirst into a situation that may kill them both. Xander’s companion Quince tells Jameson that they need to save Oberon, and Titania—the other half of the planet only accessible by gateway. And, of course, he and Xander are the key. Pros: This story is an excellent blend of sci-fi and fantasy. Oberon City is full of technology, hovercars, computer chips installed in a person’s brain. The first half of the novel takes place on Oberon, where technology has a relevant role in daily life. The city is run by two rival powers—the OberCorp in charge of mining the pith, and the Syndicate, in charge of the Slander. Xander and Jameson get stuck in the middle of both the powers as they struggle to get to Titania. Then, when in Titania, the fantasy comes through. Though some technology from Oberon filters through the gateways, Titania is a lot simpler in its culture. It’s ruled completely by the skythane—though by two rival houses, Gaelani and Erriani. The skythane depend on their ancient gods to oversee and protect them. Magical creatures inhabit this world—some friends and some foes. The rich histories of both of the worlds adds a lot of depth to this novel. The characters are well developed, with clear goals and ambitions. Xander and Jameson start off antagonistic to one another, and you can see the shift in their thinking as they grow closer. I loved the romance between them. They balance each other and fit as a couple. The skythane people intrigue me. There are several scenes when they fly and Coatsworth does a great job of conveying the feeling of exhilaration. When Jameson learns how to fly, and revels in the feeling of being free, it was very touching. Cons: Though I enjoyed the romance between Xander and Jameson, and they do gradually thaw with their cool treatment of one another, I did feel like it was rushed. Their feelings could have grown more organically. Even Quince “helping” them along by slipping them small dosages of pith—which can act as an aphrodisiac—made me cringe. Conclusion: This story is pure entertainment. It has action, adventure, intrigue, suspense, and romance. It was a quick read, fast paced, and with a deeply enthralling landscape. Every now and then, it’s nice to read a novel that’s just for fun. Rating: 4 out of 5 To find out more about J. Scott Coastworth and his other novels, you can visit his website.
  9. Mashiara Sedai

    DM News:Fantasy Review: Skythane

    Welcome back to another “Fantasy Review.” This edition is for J. Scott Coatsworth’s Skythane, the first in the Oberon Cycle trilogy. Slight spoilers follow. Synopsis: The planet of Oberon is missing half its mass. Some scientists speculate the other side is filled with dark matter—balancing the inhabited hemisphere and making it stable. Most citizens of Oberon don’t even think about it. For them, life continues like normal. The rich live in splendor while the poor are forced to scavenge in the Slander. Xander began his life in the Slander. Orphaned at an early age, Xander grew up on the streets—abused, neglected, and forgotten. Also against him is his heritage. He is a skythane—a race similar to humans, but with wings and the capacity of flight. The human settlers of Oberon forced the semi-native skythane out of their homes and off their land. Miraculously rescued off the streets, Xander is given a second chance at life, and a very important mission. When the planet’s main export—a drug called pith—suddenly dries up, Jameson is sent to investigate. When he lands in Oberon City, he’s suddenly wisked away by Xander, and thrown headfirst into a situation that may kill them both. Xander’s companion Quince tells Jameson that they need to save Oberon, and Titania—the other half of the planet only accessible by gateway. And, of course, he and Xander are the key. Pros: This story is an excellent blend of sci-fi and fantasy. Oberon City is full of technology, hovercars, computer chips installed in a person’s brain. The first half of the novel takes place on Oberon, where technology has a relevant role in daily life. The city is run by two rival powers—the OberCorp in charge of mining the pith, and the Syndicate, in charge of the Slander. Xander and Jameson get stuck in the middle of both the powers as they struggle to get to Titania. Then, when in Titania, the fantasy comes through. Though some technology from Oberon filters through the gateways, Titania is a lot simpler in its culture. It’s ruled completely by the skythane—though by two rival houses, Gaelani and Erriani. The skythane depend on their ancient gods to oversee and protect them. Magical creatures inhabit this world—some friends and some foes. The rich histories of both of the worlds adds a lot of depth to this novel. The characters are well developed, with clear goals and ambitions. Xander and Jameson start off antagonistic to one another, and you can see the shift in their thinking as they grow closer. I loved the romance between them. They balance each other and fit as a couple. The skythane people intrigue me. There are several scenes when they fly and Coatsworth does a great job of conveying the feeling of exhilaration. When Jameson learns how to fly, and revels in the feeling of being free, it was very touching. Cons: Though I enjoyed the romance between Xander and Jameson, and they do gradually thaw with their cool treatment of one another, I did feel like it was rushed. Their feelings could have grown more organically. Even Quince “helping” them along by slipping them small dosages of pith—which can act as an aphrodisiac—made me cringe. Conclusion: This story is pure entertainment. It has action, adventure, intrigue, suspense, and romance. It was a quick read, fast paced, and with a deeply enthralling landscape. Every now and then, it’s nice to read a novel that’s just for fun. Rating: 4 out of 5 To find out more about J. Scott Coastworth and his other novels, you can visit his website. View full news item
  10. This edition of “Fantasy Review” is for Brandon Sanderson’s Oathbringer, the third part of The Stormlight Archive series. For a quick refresher of what’s happened in the previous two books, you can read a synopsis of the story so far from Tor.com. Some spoilers follow. Synopsis: After battling against the Parshendi and their new storm, Dalinar Kholin and his Alethi troops take shelter in the city of Urithiru—the ancient home of the Knights Radiant. They set up a base there to try and regroup as the Everstorm rages around the entire world. Reports show that when the Everstorm hits a location, all the Parshmen change into warform and flee. Besides the few groups of Parshmen that hurt or kill on their way out of the cities, this also leaves the nations without a working class. As life settles in Urithiru, Dalinar and his Kights—Kaladin, Shallan, and Renarin—attempt to make peace with the other nations, and beg to use the Oathgates, which would transport people and supplies across the world instantly. Very few monarchs take the bait, assuming it is a trap by the Alethi to conquer their lands. Meanwhile, Alethkar suddenly goes silent. No news comes from the city, or from Elhokar’s queen and child who still live there. Elhokar convinces Dalinar to allow him to sneak into the city with some of the Radiants and try to take it back by opening the Oathgate. In Alethkar, though, there are more than just Voidbringers and Fused. There are also some of the Unmade, ancient spren who are splinters of Odium. When Elhokar’s team runs into these creatures, it seems their mission is doomed. The group (plus or minus a few of their numbers) is transported to Shadesmar—the realm of spren—and unable to return to their own land. Pros: This world is so rich. The characters are amazingly diverse. The storytelling done here is among the best I have ever read. Brandon weaves a world that is so tangible, so fleshed out. His characters act like people, doing things that make sense to them. Each is unique, with their own cares and concerns. That’s tricky to do when you have hundreds of characters! For this part of the story, I loved Adolin the most. He’s really grown since being introduced as a shallow playboy. I was actually concerned for him at the end of Words of Radiance. When he killed Sadias, I thought Adolin would slowly go mad from the guilt. Plus, he’s got a fiancé who’s a Knight Radiant, a father who is a Knight Radiant, and a brother who is a Knight Radiant. I anticipated he’d eventually succumb to jealousy. I was so wrong, and so glad I was so wrong! Adolin is a caring, hardworking, slightly vain person who only has the good of the Alethi people in his mind. I can’t get over how much I came to care for him during this book. Also, during book two, there was a hint of something between Shallan and Kaladin. I didn’t mind the idea, as Shallan and Adolin hadn’t really formed a deep bond yet. However, in Oathbringer, when there are hints of a love triangle, I never once wanted Shallan to side with Kaladin. Adolin is too good a match for Shallan. They are very well suited. And his handling of her increased shifts between personalities shows he cares for her, no matter her current form. Near the end, there was a sort of Star Wars moment (similar to when Han tells Leia he’ll stay out of her and Luke’s way in Return of the Jedi). Like Leia, Shallan sets Adolin straight, letting him know she loved him and that her other personalities can’t dictate her decisions. Another piece I loved about this installment was Dalinar’s flashbacks. We finally got to see his wife, Evi, and what happened to cause him to lose his memories. I cried several times near the conclusion of the book, when Dalinar thinks of his lost wife, and the pain that returns with all his memories. It was heartbreaking. But, Dalinar is such an amazing character. He’s strong. He’s unyielding. He won’t break under any amount of pressure. I was also surprised how much I came to like Dalinar during this book. I felt Shallan and Kaladin were more central to the first two novels, but Dalinar really shone in this one. I think of him as the main character, the hero of the story, much more than Kaladin. Cons: This story is huge. Almost intimidatingly big. There’s a ton of information and side plots, and considering the first two novels had just as much information and side plots… there’s a lot to keep track of. While I enjoyed all of these stories so far, I can’t reread them before each release. They don’t enthrall me the way Wheel of Time did. So remembering what happened to one minor character in the first book and piecing it together with what’s happening in the third book is rather difficult. The online synopsis was very helpful with refreshing my memory, but it doesn't even come close to listing all the minor plot lines that weave through this story. Conclusion: This tale is a great addition to the whole of the series. It was the book I enjoyed most out of the three. I loved the way the characters’ lives developed (particularly Adolin and Shallan) and how they all fought together in the final battle in the novel. When Dalinar stood before Odium with his assembled Knights, my heart rate sped up. It was a powerful moment. Rating: 5 out of 5 You can purchase a copy of Oathbringer from Dragonmount's DRM-free ebook store. View full news item
  11. Mashiara Sedai

    Fantasy Review: Oathbringer

    This edition of “Fantasy Review” is for Brandon Sanderson’s Oathbringer, the third part of The Stormlight Archive series. For a quick refresher of what’s happened in the previous two books, you can read a synopsis of the story so far from Tor.com. Some spoilers follow. Synopsis: After battling against the Parshendi and their new storm, Dalinar Kholin and his Alethi troops take shelter in the city of Urithiru—the ancient home of the Knights Radiant. They set up a base there to try and regroup as the Everstorm rages around the entire world. Reports show that when the Everstorm hits a location, all the Parshmen change into warform and flee. Besides the few groups of Parshmen that hurt or kill on their way out of the cities, this also leaves the nations without a working class. As life settles in Urithiru, Dalinar and his Kights—Kaladin, Shallan, and Renarin—attempt to make peace with the other nations, and beg to use the Oathgates, which would transport people and supplies across the world instantly. Very few monarchs take the bait, assuming it is a trap by the Alethi to conquer their lands. Meanwhile, Alethkar suddenly goes silent. No news comes from the city, or from Elhokar’s queen and child who still live there. Elhokar convinces Dalinar to allow him to sneak into the city with some of the Radiants and try to take it back by opening the Oathgate. In Alethkar, though, there are more than just Voidbringers and Fused. There are also some of the Unmade, ancient spren who are splinters of Odium. When Elhokar’s team runs into these creatures, it seems their mission is doomed. The group (plus or minus a few of their numbers) is transported to Shadesmar—the realm of spren—and unable to return to their own land. Pros: This world is so rich. The characters are amazingly diverse. The storytelling done here is among the best I have ever read. Brandon weaves a world that is so tangible, so fleshed out. His characters act like people, doing things that make sense to them. Each is unique, with their own cares and concerns. That’s tricky to do when you have hundreds of characters! For this part of the story, I loved Adolin the most. He’s really grown since being introduced as a shallow playboy. I was actually concerned for him at the end of Words of Radiance. When he killed Sadias, I thought Adolin would slowly go mad from the guilt. Plus, he’s got a fiancé who’s a Knight Radiant, a father who is a Knight Radiant, and a brother who is a Knight Radiant. I anticipated he’d eventually succumb to jealousy. I was so wrong, and so glad I was so wrong! Adolin is a caring, hardworking, slightly vain person who only has the good of the Alethi people in his mind. I can’t get over how much I came to care for him during this book. Also, during book two, there was a hint of something between Shallan and Kaladin. I didn’t mind the idea, as Shallan and Adolin hadn’t really formed a deep bond yet. However, in Oathbringer, when there are hints of a love triangle, I never once wanted Shallan to side with Kaladin. Adolin is too good a match for Shallan. They are very well suited. And his handling of her increased shifts between personalities shows he cares for her, no matter her current form. Near the end, there was a sort of Star Wars moment (similar to when Han tells Leia he’ll stay out of her and Luke’s way in Return of the Jedi). Like Leia, Shallan sets Adolin straight, letting him know she loved him and that her other personalities can’t dictate her decisions. Another piece I loved about this installment was Dalinar’s flashbacks. We finally got to see his wife, Evi, and what happened to cause him to lose his memories. I cried several times near the conclusion of the book, when Dalinar thinks of his lost wife, and the pain that returns with all his memories. It was heartbreaking. But, Dalinar is such an amazing character. He’s strong. He’s unyielding. He won’t break under any amount of pressure. I was also surprised how much I came to like Dalinar during this book. I felt Shallan and Kaladin were more central to the first two novels, but Dalinar really shone in this one. I think of him as the main character, the hero of the story, much more than Kaladin. Cons: This story is huge. Almost intimidatingly big. There’s a ton of information and side plots, and considering the first two novels had just as much information and side plots… there’s a lot to keep track of. While I enjoyed all of these stories so far, I can’t reread them before each release. They don’t enthrall me the way Wheel of Time did. So remembering what happened to one minor character in the first book and piecing it together with what’s happening in the third book is rather difficult. The online synopsis was very helpful with refreshing my memory, but it doesn't even come close to listing all the minor plot lines that weave through this story. Conclusion: This tale is a great addition to the whole of the series. It was the book I enjoyed most out of the three. I loved the way the characters’ lives developed (particularly Adolin and Shallan) and how they all fought together in the final battle in the novel. When Dalinar stood before Odium with his assembled Knights, my heart rate sped up. It was a powerful moment. Rating: 5 out of 5 You can purchase a copy of Oathbringer from Dragonmount's DRM-free ebook store.
  12. Mashiara Sedai

    Kiri

    @Kiri I've got this added! It's an amazingly cute quilt!
  13. Mashiara Sedai

    WoT Skin!!

    I love the idea of a WoT tattoo! Unfortunately, I'm terrified of needles. Also, if I ever work up the courage to actually get a tattoo, I'd want the four-leaf clover tattoo that Sue has on her thigh in the manga Clover. It's such a bittersweet tale and I love the meaning of the tattoo and the strength of her character.
  14. Long time Wheel of Time commentator, Leigh Butler, has released her top five scenes within the series. With a rekindled reading of The Wheel of Time currently underway at Tor.com, Leigh seems eager to get back on her soap box and sing the praises of this wonderful collection of books. Warning! Spoilers follow! In her full article, Leigh argues why each one is especially significant to the plot, the characters, and the entertainment of the readers. Do you agree or disagree with Leigh's picks? One of my personal favorites is when Mat finds out Tuon is really the Daughter of the Nine Moons (which didn't even make the list of honorable mentions). Don't forget to check out Tor.com's Reading the Wheel of Time, which chronicles Kelsey Jefferson Barrett's initial journey into our beloved series.
  15. Rafe Judkins, the writer and showrunner for a potential Wheel of Time television series sent out a tweet earlier this week showing off his worn copies of the first three novels. Many have speculated that this means Judkins is starting to work on a script for the show. Adam Whitehead sums up the current rights and details of the show on his website, stating : We are all very anxious to see the show find a home, and having a fan at the helm definitely gives me hope! If you want to keep up to date with all the latest information, you can follow Judkins on Twitter.
  16. Mashiara Sedai

    Fandom Flair: Amyrlin Stole

    Welcome back to “Fandom Flair,” Dragonmount’s blog that shows you how to incorporate fandom love into everyday life. Last time I promised to show you how to make an Amyrlin Stole with the scraps of the Ajah quilt. The two projects are actually very similar in execution. Materials Needed: 3 inch by 60 inch strip of fabric in every Ajah color 10 inch by 60 inch strip of backing fabric Sewing machine Thread Pins If you look for pictures of Amyrlin Stoles online, you’ll notice most of them are knit/crocheted. Knitting or crocheting is a pretty easy way to get the thin strips of colors side by side. With fabric, you can’t just buy 3 inch strips. Most places will only give you a minimum of 1/4 yard (9 inches), and most fabrics don’t come in 60 inch widths. That’s what makes this difficult, unless you bought the fabric for other projects (as I did with the Ajah quilt). So, if you don’t want to invest in so much fabric just for a Stole, knitting or crocheting is a great alternative. Personally, I don’t have the patience to knit or crochet, so this is the only option for me. Step 1: Cutting your fabric I was left with 22 inch by 60 inch cuts of all seven fabrics after the quilt was finished. The first thing I did was cut off a small 3 inch sliver from each color. I used a rotary cutter for this since it was easiest to slice the 60 inches. Step 2: Sewing Once again, I wanted the colors to be authentic to canon. The order on the Stole is blue, green, yellow, red, gray, white, brown. Just like the quilt, I put the blue face up, the green face down, and sewed up the right side. I used 1/2 inch seam allowance which, in theory, would give me an inch strip of each color for the finished product. (It actually wound up being about an inch and a half; an inch would have looked better.) Next, I put the yellow face down on the green and sewed. I sewed the red to the yellow, the gray to the red, the white to the gray, and the brown to the white. The whole process was very quick! Once they’re all sewn together, iron down the seams. I folded the seams away from the white since it was the most see through. Step 3: Backing Here’s a cool tip: use the backing as an opportunity to have a Keeper’s Stole! Pick a fabric in your Ajah color (mine is White) and use that as the backing fabric. That way, if you flip it around, you have a Keeper’s Stole, just in case. I had a large chunk of a white satiny fabric that I chose for my back. I decided to pin my stole down to the backing, right side to right side, and cut along the edges. This gave me an easy way to ensure my backing fit. As I said, I tried for 1/2 inch seam allowance, but I’m not always the best with getting my seams straight. Step 4: Make a pillow With the fabrics right side to right side, sew all along the length, along one of the sides, and up the other length. This creates something similar to a pillow. Next, flip it inside out, paying attention to get the corners as sharp as possible. Fold the raw edge under an inch or so and sew closed with clear quilters thread. And you’re done! Altogether, this project didn’t take more than a few hours. It’s much simpler than the quilt, and maybe a little bit more impressive. Next time, I want to hop on the Pokemon Go craze and show you how to make a pokeball plushie.
  17. Mashiara Sedai

    Fantasy Review: The Stone Sky

    This “Fantasy Review” is for The Stone Sky, the third and final book in The Broken Earth series, by N.K. Jemisin. Synopsis: Essun is still determined to find her daughter, Nessun. The comm of Castrima Under—where Essun currently dwells—has been damaged by their war with Rennaris. The people must find a new place to ride out the Fifth Season. Due to Essun’s annihilation of the Rennarin people, the comm decides to travel the far distance to the now-abandoned city. Essun’s still plans to grab the moon when its orbit circles close, but there is still time before she must leave her place within the com. Nessun, meanwhile, begins her trek to the other side of the world, with Shaffa and the Stone Eater, Steel, as companions. Steel can transport them through the earth, but Nassun fears the Stone Eater may “accidently” lose Shaffa on the journey. This means a longer way is necessary, going to an ancient station capable of taking them through the earth’s core. But at the earth’s center is something far more frightening than Steel’s mode of transportation. Mixed in with these two accounts is a flashback into Hoa’s past, where the events that lead to the war with Father Earth are finally revealed. Pros: I loved the addition of Hoa’s storyline. It was terrible seeing the beginning of orogenes and the atrocities the ancient society did in order to maintain peace and balance. The choices Hoa and his kind made are understandable, and parallel the conflict within Essun and Nassun. Essun wishes to save the earth by grabbing the moon. Nassun, based on Shaffa’s pessimistic—or maybe weary—view of the world, wishes for it, and Father Earth, to die. I was also pleasantly pleased by the actual ending, the last chapter. SPOILER: I thought the perfect match for Essun was Innon and Alabaster; the three of them together made a wonderful family. However, seeing her paired with Hoa was heartwarming. Essun’s life was so horrible and filled with so much tragedy, it was uplifting to see she wound up with a happy ending. Cons: Once we got the reunion between mother and daughter, the character motivations were understandable, but rather annoying. The reader has the benefit of seeing the character’s thoughts, so I was frustrated when the two were unable to communicate their desires to the other. Like I said, understandable considering all that had happened between them, but at the same time, I wanted to shake them both and make them talk it out! Alas, too much had transpired, too much harm had been done—to both of them. Conclusion: This was a fantastic final. Satisfying and rather hopeful for a brighter future. I’d been doubting whether this would have a happy ending or not. And it surprisingly does. Or maybe—to coin a phrase from the romance genre—a Happy For Now. I loved everything about this series, the characters, the world, the magic. It was emotional the whole way through, tugging on my heartstrings over and over and over. I was very sad when it ended. I could read so much more in this world. Perhaps Jemisin will revisit the world a thousand years in the future—like Brandon Sanderson’s ideas for Mistborn. Rating: 4 out of 5 For more from N. K. Jemisin, you can check out her website.
  18. This “Fantasy Review” is for The Stone Sky, the third and final book in The Broken Earth series, by N.K. Jemisin. Synopsis: Essun is still determined to find her daughter, Nessun. The comm of Castrima Under—where Essun currently dwells—has been damaged by their war with Rennaris. The people must find a new place to ride out the Fifth Season. Due to Essun’s annihilation of the Rennarin people, the comm decides to travel the far distance to the now-abandoned city. Essun’s still plans to grab the moon when its orbit circles close, but there is still time before she must leave her place within the com. Nessun, meanwhile, begins her trek to the other side of the world, with Shaffa and the Stone Eater, Steel, as companions. Steel can transport them through the earth, but Nassun fears the Stone Eater may “accidently” lose Shaffa on the journey. This means a longer way is necessary, going to an ancient station capable of taking them through the earth’s core. But at the earth’s center is something far more frightening than Steel’s mode of transportation. Mixed in with these two accounts is a flashback into Hoa’s past, where the events that lead to the war with Father Earth are finally revealed. Pros: I loved the addition of Hoa’s storyline. It was terrible seeing the beginning of orogenes and the atrocities the ancient society did in order to maintain peace and balance. The choices Hoa and his kind made are understandable, and parallel the conflict within Essun and Nassun. Essun wishes to save the earth by grabbing the moon. Nassun, based on Shaffa’s pessimistic—or maybe weary—view of the world, wishes for it, and Father Earth, to die. I was also pleasantly pleased by the actual ending, the last chapter. SPOILER: I thought the perfect match for Essun was Innon and Alabaster; the three of them together made a wonderful family. However, seeing her paired with Hoa was heartwarming. Essun’s life was so horrible and filled with so much tragedy, it was uplifting to see she wound up with a happy ending. Cons: Once we got the reunion between mother and daughter, the character motivations were understandable, but rather annoying. The reader has the benefit of seeing the character’s thoughts, so I was frustrated when the two were unable to communicate their desires to the other. Like I said, understandable considering all that had happened between them, but at the same time, I wanted to shake them both and make them talk it out! Alas, too much had transpired, too much harm had been done—to both of them. Conclusion: This was a fantastic final. Satisfying and rather hopeful for a brighter future. I’d been doubting whether this would have a happy ending or not. And it surprisingly does. Or maybe—to coin a phrase from the romance genre—a Happy For Now. I loved everything about this series, the characters, the world, the magic. It was emotional the whole way through, tugging on my heartstrings over and over and over. I was very sad when it ended. I could read so much more in this world. Perhaps Jemisin will revisit the world a thousand years in the future—like Brandon Sanderson’s ideas for Mistborn. Rating: 4 out of 5 For more from N. K. Jemisin, you can check out her website. View full news item
  19. Mashiara Sedai

    Who's going to JordanCon 10?

    I'll be there! This will be number five for me. I wasn't able to attend last year--which really made me sad! It's such an amazing Con, with so many amazing people! Next year, I'm hoping to be one of the guest authors!
  20. Mashiara Sedai

    Wheel of Time Wordcount Statistics

    Earlier today, Barnes & Noble released a detailed analysis of many components that make up The Wheel of Time series. The article focuses on wordcount, and how that applies to several areas of the novels, including character's gender, character's nationality, character's occupation, as well as words per book, and words averaged per chapter. It's a bit overwhelming to look at it in number form, but author Kevin Klein does a fantastic job of explaining what each graph represents, and what we can infer from viewing them all together. If you're in the mood for some deep thinking—or you happen to be in the White or Brown Ajahs—check out Klein's article!
  21. Mashiara Sedai

    Brown Ajah Chocolate Week - Chocolate Delivery

    Thank you, @Rhea! You’re such a sweetie! ❤️ Now I feel gushy, too!
  22. Later this month, Tor.com will be kicking off a new column devoted to reading The Wheel of Time, aptly named "Reading the Wheel of Time." This weekly article will be headed by Kelsey Jefferson Barrett. Barrett, though steeped in sci-fi and fantasy, has yet to embark on a journey through The Wheel of Time series. He will be looking at it all through a new lens and with fresh perspective. Barrett's first steps through Randland will debut Tuesday, February 20th. To celebrate this, and encourage everyone to read along, Tor.com is giving away free ebook copies of The Eye of the World to Tor's Ebook Club members! The free copies can only be redeemed February 13th, 14th, and 15th! Be sure to act quickly so you don't get left behind! Wheel of Time fans rallied behind Leigh Butler and her reread on Tor.com, and I'm sure Barrett will do an equally amazing job of seeing the depth and complexities that make up Robert Jordan's universe. I'm excited to gaze upon its wonder for the first time--even if only by association. View full news item
  23. Later this month, Tor.com will be kicking off a new column devoted to reading The Wheel of Time, aptly named "Reading the Wheel of Time." This weekly article will be headed by Kelsey Jefferson Barrett. Barrett, though steeped in sci-fi and fantasy, has yet to embark on a journey through The Wheel of Time series. He will be looking at it all through a new lens and with fresh perspective. Barrett's first steps through Randland will debut Tuesday, February 20th. To celebrate this, and encourage everyone to read along, Tor.com is giving away free ebook copies of The Eye of the World to Tor's Ebook Club members! The free copies can only be redeemed February 13th, 14th, and 15th! Be sure to act quickly so you don't get left behind! Wheel of Time fans rallied behind Leigh Butler and her reread on Tor.com, and I'm sure Barrett will do an equally amazing job of seeing the depth and complexities that make up Robert Jordan's universe. I'm excited to gaze upon its wonder for the first time--even if only by association.
  24. Mashiara Sedai

    Fantasy Review: The Obelisk Gate

    This edition of “Fantasy Review” is for The Obelisk Gate, the second novel in N. K. Jemisin’s The Broken Earth series. This book was also awarded the Hugo for Best Novel in 2017. It’s easy to see why. Synopsis: Reunited with Alabaster, Essun once again becomes the learner. He has plans—and since he is turning into a rock—it’s up to Essun to finish them. They try to make the best of things in their new comm, Castrima, but when the world is breaking down, no place is safe. Not only do they need to contend with a dwindling food supply due to the ash-filled sky, but wild animals mutate during a Season, and their evolved abilities can be devastating. When Alabaster finally reveals his mission of catching the moon, Essun wonders if she can accomplish such a fete. Meanwhile, Jija and Nassun travel for a year to reach the safety—and a promised cure for orogeny—in Found Moon. There, Nassun is put in the charge of three Guardians—all of whom have panicked and given their bodies over to the voices inside their heads. The leader of the bunch is Schaffa and he takes a particular liking to Nassun and eventually makes the connection of her being the daughter of Syenite. While Jija wants Nassun to cure herself of orogeny, her desire to help Schaffa pushes her powers to new and startling depths. Pros: These characters are amazing! So developed, captivating, realistic. It’s easy to understand Essun’s choices and her point of view of the world. Her struggles—trying to piece together the life of Syenite, which Alabaster represents, and her life as a mother, which Lerna represents—resonate with raw emotions. This was another book that made me cry. The evolution of the magic system is one of the main driving forces in this novel. With Alabaster’s help, Essun is able to sense something that is not orogeny. It’s described as silver, and it is dubbed as “magic.” With magic and orogeny, Essun’s task to grab the moon may be in reach. Nassun takes more prominence. Her powers grow incredibly fast once she’s under the care and guidance of the Guardians. It’s hard to get a good read on Schaffa’s character. He’s been portrayed as nothing but evil since book one, and Nassun’s favorable opinion of him makes me think he may be redeemed. Or perhaps he’s able to con Nassun easier than he could Syenite. And though Alabaster is not very active in this storyline, he is still my favorite character. Though I also grew to like Hoa—the stone eater who has claimed Essun. The end of the first novel revealed him as the narrator, and knowing that it’s his perspective gave a lot more insight to his character. I’m really interested in the link between orogenes and the stone eaters. It seems like an Aes Sedai/Warder type relationship, but it does have hints of something more sinister. Cons: The pace slowed down a lot from the first book. In The Fifth Season, it covered three different timelines spread out over 30 years. So for this novel to have the scope of only one year, it seemed like not many things were happening at once. Not necessarily a bad thing, a slow pace does not mean a boring book. But for me, personally, it didn’t feel as sweeping and encompassing as the previous novel. Conclusion: I am amazed at the writing of the these novels, the tone and voice, the growth of characters, the details of the world. This one slowed down a bit, but I’m still loving the journey. I’m hoping the concluding novel, The Stone Sky, gives me the epic finale I’m waiting for. Rating: 4 out of 5 For more from N. K. Jemisin, you can check out her website.
  25. This edition of “Fantasy Review” is for The Obelisk Gate, the second novel in N. K. Jemisin’s The Broken Earth series. This book was also awarded the Hugo for Best Novel in 2017. It’s easy to see why. Synopsis: Reunited with Alabaster, Essun once again becomes the learner. He has plans—and since he is turning into a rock—it’s up to Essun to finish them. They try to make the best of things in their new comm, Castrima, but when the world is breaking down, no place is safe. Not only do they need to contend with a dwindling food supply due to the ash-filled sky, but wild animals mutate during a Season, and their evolved abilities can be devastating. When Alabaster finally reveals his mission of catching the moon, Essun wonders if she can accomplish such a fete. Meanwhile, Jija and Nassun travel for a year to reach the safety—and a promised cure for orogeny—in Found Moon. There, Nassun is put in the charge of three Guardians—all of whom have panicked and given their bodies over to the voices inside their heads. The leader of the bunch is Schaffa and he takes a particular liking to Nassun and eventually makes the connection of her being the daughter of Syenite. While Jija wants Nassun to cure herself of orogeny, her desire to help Schaffa pushes her powers to new and startling depths. Pros: These characters are amazing! So developed, captivating, realistic. It’s easy to understand Essun’s choices and her point of view of the world. Her struggles—trying to piece together the life of Syenite, which Alabaster represents, and her life as a mother, which Lerna represents—resonate with raw emotions. This was another book that made me cry. The evolution of the magic system is one of the main driving forces in this novel. With Alabaster’s help, Essun is able to sense something that is not orogeny. It’s described as silver, and it is dubbed as “magic.” With magic and orogeny, Essun’s task to grab the moon may be in reach. Nassun takes more prominence. Her powers grow incredibly fast once she’s under the care and guidance of the Guardians. It’s hard to get a good read on Schaffa’s character. He’s been portrayed as nothing but evil since book one, and Nassun’s favorable opinion of him makes me think he may be redeemed. Or perhaps he’s able to con Nassun easier than he could Syenite. And though Alabaster is not very active in this storyline, he is still my favorite character. Though I also grew to like Hoa—the stone eater who has claimed Essun. The end of the first novel revealed him as the narrator, and knowing that it’s his perspective gave a lot more insight to his character. I’m really interested in the link between orogenes and the stone eaters. It seems like an Aes Sedai/Warder type relationship, but it does have hints of something more sinister. Cons: The pace slowed down a lot from the first book. In The Fifth Season, it covered three different timelines spread out over 30 years. So for this novel to have the scope of only one year, it seemed like not many things were happening at once. Not necessarily a bad thing, a slow pace does not mean a boring book. But for me, personally, it didn’t feel as sweeping and encompassing as the previous novel. Conclusion: I am amazed at the writing of the these novels, the tone and voice, the growth of characters, the details of the world. This one slowed down a bit, but I’m still loving the journey. I’m hoping the concluding novel, The Stone Sky, gives me the epic finale I’m waiting for. Rating: 4 out of 5 For more from N. K. Jemisin, you can check out her website. View full news item
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