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A Positive Thread About TLD
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Cord Hurn
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 03, 2014 5:52 am    Post subject: Re: A Positive Thread About TLD Reply with quote

SleeplessOne wrote:

this was the exchange I was referring to Cord Hurn :

Quote:
"Indeed!" exclaimed Onyx Stonemage. "I will give my oath that I am dwindling. Hunger diminishes me. My garments hang loosely, and my cataphract has become an encumbrance, and I fear that my sword has grown too long for easy use."
For a moment, the Giants were silent. Then Coldspray said like a sigh, "You forget to whom you speak, Stonemage. All here know that in your care every sword grows too long for easy use."


Laughing


Heh-heh-heh, I get it, now. I appreciate you taking the time to remind me of that, SleeplessOne. Thank you. Smile
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarathustra: How did you make peace with the symbolic ending of TLD? Did you find something to connect to the real world? I was looking for that as well.

-Peter
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 12:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We get to watch Linden take a bath..
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 1:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

And then we can watch her take a bath again...
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 3:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

While I'm reading, I try to suspend disbelief and place myself in the protaganists' shoes to feel my response. This book, and really, the whole series, had me on an emotional roller coaster from beginning to end. The writing just throbs with power and imagination. Especially moving me to tears were the very beginning of TLD, where Linden's heart almost breaks with relief, joy, exaltation, and love at her son's breakthrough and his love for her, and also the scene where Covenant and Linden marry. With that latter one, I was yelling out loud, "Yes! It had to be!" The Epilog is pretty sweet, for sure. Linden's freeing of She Who Must Not Be Named and then SWMNBN returning the favor by freeing all the women she's ever swallowed. Jeremiah's plight, and then his victory is full of pathos and then transcendence while also giving us the fullest picture yet of the Ravers' outlook of will-less service to something greater than themselves (it's an attitude that can only be held by someone who never had any self-love or love for anything to begin with, and who IMO, is bound to end up serving someone like the Despiser).

I have a lot of problems with some aspects of The Last Dark. I had problems with the ending of White Gold Wielder. That didn't stop me from enjoying the ride, and it's one HELL of a ride.[/i]
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 3:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

lurch wrote:
As just a small moment of frank honesty TC and Linden revealing to each other that they really don't like horses..spun me around, but as a honest exchange it was pretty neat.


Gave me a chuckle. Especially if you remember or re-read the end of TPTP and realize that Covenant is allergic to horses, or at least to their blood.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2014 1:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

hurtloam...you scare me... I have already complted a dissect of chapter 1 of TLD..and I see the words I used in the dissect ,,in your post above.. like a sneak preview...actually ..its quite surreal..The idea that amongst human beings...we have a an immense amount in common..we are all connected.

A work that can be dissected,,above the Jack and Jill went up the hill level..is one heck of a positive thing to be beheld.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2014 3:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

lurch wrote:
hurtloam...you scare me... I have already complted a dissect of chapter 1 of TLD..and I see the words I used in the dissect ,,in your post above.. like a sneak preview...actually ..its quite surreal..The idea that amongst human beings...we have a an immense amount in common..we are all connected.

A work that can be dissected,,above the Jack and Jill went up the hill level..is one heck of a positive thing to be beheld.


Well gee, lurch, I don't know what to say to that, except to confirm that I didn't look at your dissection before writing that.
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cord Hurn wrote:
The scene where Kastenessan is bluffed into being herded into the fane is a hoot! Very Happy


I didn't really explain that remark, so would like to do so now.

It's the moment after Infelice tells Kastenessen to cease his striving, enter Jeremiah's fane along with the rest of his people, and permit them to heal his hurts.

Quote:
But Kastenessen had spent long ages in his Durance. He had made choices which exacerbated his fury. Infelice's appeal could not reach him. For him, it may have been the final affront.

He gathered flames until they burst from his eyes and his mouth, from every limb and line of his towering form. He was becoming a holocaust, devastation personified: a bonfire high and hot enough to ravage the plain. His reply was one word: "Never!"
Yet he was not given time to release his accumulated hate.

From the northeast, a burst of extravagant argent opened the twilight. It cast back the darkness, dismissed the sunless gloom. It was as bright as Kastenessen, and as complex, but immeasurably cleaner. And it was brief, little more than a blink. Nevertheless it was long enough.
Out of it came riding Thomas Covenant and Branl Haruchai of the Humbled. Covenant held Loric's krill.
The shock of their arrival snatched Kastenessen away from his victims.

Covenant rode a shovel-headed horse as ungainly and muscular as a mule. Branl was mounted on a Ranyhyn that Jeremiah had never seen before. And they were in a desperate hurry. Froth snorted from the nostrils of Covenant's horse, the muzzle of Branl's palomino stallion. Sweat reflected brimstone on their coats. They looked like they had galloped for leagues or days. Covenant lurched in his seat as if he were falling.

As soon as his mount's hooves struck the dirt, he pitched from his saddle. But he did not sprawl. Staggering like a holed ship in a storm, he managed to stay on his feet. Awkward and urgent, he confronted Kastenessen as if he had forgotten that the Elohim could reduce his bones to ash.
In his maimed hands, the gem of the krill shown like a kept promise in an abandoned world.

"You--!" Kastenessen began: a strangled howl. Rage clenched his throat, choked off his protest.
"Try me," Covenant panted as if he were on the verge of prostration. "Do your worst." He looked too weak to withstand a slap. Streaked by conflicting illuminations, his face had the pallor of a wasting disease. Still he was Thomas Covenant. He did not falter. "See what happens.
"I killed my ex-wife. I helped destroy a Raver. And I've seen the Worm of the World's End. I am done with restraint!" His teeth gnashed. "I used to care how much you've suffered. I don't anymore. If you think you can beat me, go ahead. I'm wild magic, you crazy bastard. I'll cut you apart where you stand."

Jeremiah stared and stared, and could not name his astonishment, when Kastenessen flinched--
--and took an alarmed step backward.
Covenant advanced, holding up the krill. It blazed like havoc, unmitigated and unanswerable. Its argent covered him with majesty. The silver of his hair resembled a crown.
Branl came up behind him, but did not intrude.
Kastenessen retreated another step, and another. Another. The passion in Covenant's eyes drove him. He must have realized that he was being forced toward Infelice and the fane; but he did not stop. Perhaps he could not. Perhaps he saw something in Covenant, or in Loric's numinous dagger, that cowed him.

With every step, he dwindled. Retreating, he became smaller. Lava seemed to leak out of him and fade, denatured like water by his own thwarted heat.
Covenant stumbled and wavered, and kept coming. Kastenessen shrank away from him.
Giants let him pass. They watched as if they were as stricken as Jeremiah; as transfixed.
Then Infelice spoke Kastenessen's name like a command, and Kastenessen turned from Covenant to face her.
Terror and loathing contorted his features. He conveyed the impression that he wanted to scream and could not because he feared he might sob. Through his teeth, he spat words like fragments of torment.
"You have earned my abhorrence."

Infelice's calm had become irrefusable. Placid as Glimmermere, she answered, "We have. We will not ask you to set it aside. We ask only that you allow us to soothe your pain."
Her response appeared to horrify himl. "It is what I am."
"It is not," she countered, undismayed. "When it is gone, you will remember that you and you alone among the Elohim have both loved and been loved."
To that assertion, he had no reply.

She did not repeat her invitation. Instead she reached out one hand to clasp his severed wrist. With chiming and mercy, she staunched his bleeding. If the pollution of the skurj him, caused her any hurt, she accepted it.
His eyes bled anguish. He made no attempt to pull away.
Briefly Infelice glanced at the Giants, at the Ironhand. "Be warned," she told them. "Moksha Jehannum noow rules the skurj. He will wield them with cunning and malice. And do not forget that the Chosen-son is precious to a-Jeroth."
Then she surrendered at last to the imperative of Jeremiah's construct. Drawing Kastenessen with her, she entered the fane. In an instant, they were gone as if they had stepped out of the world altogether.

"Damnation," Covenant gasped. "I wasn't sure I could do that."
Lowering his arms as if he had been beaten, he tried to approach the Swordmainnir. But his legs failed, and he dropped to his knees.
Overhead, Kevin's Dirt had already begun to dissipate. If more stars perished, they did so beyond the horizons. Jeremiah did not see them die.


I like how Kastenessen goes from being a fiery demonic figure, "a holocaust, devastation personified" and then slowly fizzles out when Covenant advances toward him wielding Loric's weapon. Enjoyable imagery.

There are some vividly entertaining similes in this passage. When Covenant is pitched from his horse, he is "staggering like a holed ship in a storm". The light of the gem in the krill he holds "shown like a kept promise in an abandoned world", it "blazed like havoc, unmitigated and unanswerable". Infelice talking to Kastenessen is as "placid as Glimmermere".

Covenant, though appearing "too weak to withstand a slap", advances on Kastenessen with the lines, "I killed my ex-wife. I helped destroy a Raver. And I've seen the Worm of the World's End. I am done with restraint!" Lines great enough to be the trailer for this book.

Kastenessen allows himself to be herded by Covenant due to the inestimable peril of Covenant and the krill. This is an unexpected, clever twist--better than the prolonged duel of fire from Kasty and the skurj that I was expecting that would have produced pages of slaughter and overused heat metaphors.

Infelice's words to Kastenessen, "When it is gone [his pain], you will remember that you and you alone have both loved and been loved" were a rare gift of eloquence from her. She taking his hurt and the pollution of the skurj into herself without complaint parellels Covenant's previously taking in Fangthane's wild magic blasts at the climax of the Second Chronicles.

The warning about Moksha Jehannum now controlling the skurj keeps the sense of foreboding danger and ambush at an appropriately compelling level for the story.

Covenant admitting he wasn't sure he could do that face-off after all was said and done with bravado was something I found funny. Big Grin

I felt a sense of relief after this was over knowing Kevin's Dirt was vanquished, and that no more stars would be dying.

This entire passage was most unexpected and very enjoyable for me. Big Wave


Last edited by Cord Hurn on Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:39 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hurtloam wrote:
While I'm reading, I try to suspend disbelief and place myself in the protaganists' shoes to feel my response. This book, and really, the whole series, had me on an emotional roller coaster from beginning to end. The writing just throbs with power and imagination. Especially moving me to tears were the very beginning of TLD, where Linden's heart almost breaks with relief, joy, exaltation, and love at her son's breakthrough and his love for her, and also the scene where Covenant and Linden marry. With that latter one, I was yelling out loud, "Yes! It had to be!" The Epilog is pretty sweet, for sure. Linden's freeing of She Who Must Not Be Named and then SWMNBN returning the favor by freeing all the women she's ever swallowed. Jeremiah's plight, and then his victory is full of pathos and then transcendence while also giving us the fullest picture yet of the Ravers' outlook of will-less service to something greater than themselves (it's an attitude that can only be held by someone who never had any self-love or love for anything to begin with, and who IMO, is bound to end up serving someone like the Despiser).

I have a lot of problems with some aspects of The Last Dark. I had problems with the ending of White Gold Wielder. That didn't stop me from enjoying the ride, and it's one HELL of a ride.


VERY well said, Hurtloam! Applaud
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2014 12:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

On 2nd read ,every chapter is blowing me away.

A Positive Post about TLD??..try chapter 7;
" This is it ! he shouted. " Malachite! That cliff is riddled with it!

Fortunately Liand-lost Liand- had taught her how to find the possibilities beneath the written surface of the wood, even when she had no enhanced discernment to guide her.

EASTER EGGS!
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2014 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I certainly agree that rereads have generally improved most people's outlook on the Last Cs. I would not be surprised if a TLD reread improves it as well. I look forward to mine.
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 15, 2014 12:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

way..on reread,,if you think you are reading it too slow, read it slower.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2014 1:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Song of Caerroil Wildwood , whilst transforming Mahrtiir,,,touches infinity while touching the soul.,,a Love is defined
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 3:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One of the things I like about The Last Dark is that it gives further indication of how much more Covenant and the Haruchai have learned to understand and trust each other over time, which I find emotionally satisfying.

Recall how it was after Covenant had first given Foul's message to the Council of Lords and revealed that he bore a white gold ring.

In Lord Foul's Bane, chapter 15 was wrote:
"You still don't trust me," he said in a spent voice.
Bannor shrugged. "We are the Bloodguard. We have no use for white gold."
"No use?"
"It is a knowledge--a weapon. We have no use for weapons."


A couple of passages in The Last Dark show a deepening of the mutual appreciation between Covenant and the Haruchai. One is after Branl and Clyme accomplish the slaying of a Raver and Covenant and Branl have been healed by hurtloam.

In The Last Dark, part I, chapter 5 was wrote:
Branl's gaze did not waver. "You sought to spare us, ur-Lord," he replied as though every human tone had been hammered out of his voice. "That you have ever done, though you have long known that no Haruchai wishes to be spared. To be denied the outcome of our deeds implies a judgement of unworth. Yet you are the ur-Lord, the Unbeliever. As we are known to you, so you are known to us. By long travail, we have learned that your choices are indeed a judgement of unworth. But it is yourself that you judge, yourself and no other. Therefore we found no insult in your wish to confront turiya Herem alone."


Then there is Branl's declaration to Covenant after TC uses the krill and his blood to summon the Fire Lions to save his companions (and himself).

In The Last Dark, part II, chapter 4 was wrote:
"You are answered, ur-Lord," Branl announced distinctly. "A worthy effort in all sooth. How the forces which you have unleashed may combat skurj, who are themselves a form of fire, I cannot conceive. Nonetheless the summons is both valiant and unforeseen. I am proud that I am Humbled in your name."


Covenant and the Haruchai have indeed come a long way, and I find Branl's remarks a significant and enjoyable marker in that journey.
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 4:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A few things I really loved:

Nothing new here: Stave's evolution. I hated that guy for the longest time. I remember thinking, "He's no Bannor." By the end, I was reveling in his growth, and also in what it promised for all Haruchai.

I loved every teensy appearance of Mhoram. I miss that guy.

The final barrier to TC and Linden's love falling away, their mutual admissions of need and love, the subsequent marriage and rendering of true whitegold wielders left me a weeping, giggling mess.

I gotta say: I really loved The Mahdoubt, and I enjoyed learrning that the Theomach was AHKA. That was condign!

I was super happy to see a promise of restoration of the Old Lords' lore, especially the images of the location of a couple more of the Wards (five and six, I presume?). I'll admit, though, that I was really hoping that the fire from the cleansed Staff of Law would be blue!

More than anything, though, I loved the return of the Ranyhyn. I get SO PISSED every time I read TWL and realize that they're gone, and I think I always feared they would never return. When they showed up, I had hope that the Land would truly recover. (Related: Kevin's Dirt felt like a personal affront. Weird name, effective plot device.)
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 5:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

And even in its state of sadness, its still a positive in that it rounds out the " human experience", it is part of what it is to be a Human Being, the honoring of Mhornym and Naybahn as heroes and their subsequent retirement from active duty, by Brinn, as they arrive bloodied and beaten,,some emotions there ! And to think they are elicited by Donaldson ,,as noted elsewhere, who has said of horses, to being rather stupid...
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 12:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Upon re-reading TLD, I came upon a passage that I now recall enjoying, but had forgotten about in the intervening weeks. It's after the costly battle with both Sandgorgons and skurj and before the company enters Mount Thunder through the path of the Defiles Course to ascend up to Kiril Threndor.

In TLD, Part II, Chapter 5 was wrote:
Formally, the Ironhand drew her stone glaive. Holding it ready, she spoke in a voice of granite.
"Here we surrender every future which we have imagined for ourselves. We have no prospect of return. Indeed, we cannot trust that we will outlive another day. Our doom is this, that we enter Mount Thunder seeking to confront the most heinous of foes--and yet the Worm hastens toward the World's End many scores of leagues distant, where no deed of ours can thwart it. Thus even the greatest triumphs within the mountain may come to naught, for no life will remain to heed the tale.

"Nonetheless I proclaim"--Coldspray swung her sword around her head, then slapped it into its scabbard on her back--"that I am not daunted. I am not daunted. While hearts beat and lungs draw breath, we seek to affirm the import of our lives. The true worth of tales lies in this, that those of whom they speak do not regard how the telling of their trials will be received. When we must perish, my wish for us is that we will come to the end knowing that we have held fast to that which we deem precious."
Then her tone eased. "Doubtless this is folly. Yet when have our deeds been otherwise? Are we not Giants? And is not our folly the stone against which we have raised the sea of our laughter? What cause have we to feel dismay and hold back, when we have always known that no anchor is secure against the seas of mischance and wonder?"

Perhaps she would have continued; but the Anchormaster was already laughing. He tried to say something, but the words were lost in broad gusts of glee. For a moment, the other sailors were silent, dismayed by images of futility. But then Baf Scatterwit began to guffaw: the happy mirth of a woman who enjoyed laughing for its own sake. Her laughter broke the logjam of her comrade' fears. Carried along by her open-heartedness, the crew of Dire's Vessel roared as if they themselves were an exquisite jest.
The Swordmainnir were more restrained. They had lost too many of their comrades. But when Rime Coldspray started to chuckle, Frostheart Grueburn followed her example, and then Cirrus Kindwind. In their subdued fashion, the Ironhand and her warriors shared the delight of the sailors.

Privately Jeremiah thought they had all lost their minds. Nevertheless he found himself grinning. He had heard too little genuine laughter in his life; and the mirth of Giants was especially infectious. At least temporarily, it made Lord Foul's scorn and the croyel's malice seem empty, like taunts from the bottom of an abandoned well.
Long ago, Saltheart Foamfollower had enabled Covenant's victory over the Despiser by laughing.

As the Giants began to subside, Covenant muttered, "Stone and Sea are deep in life." He seemed to be quoting. "Two unalterable symbols of the world.: Then he lifted his head to the dark heavens, the decimated stars. From his ring, a brief flash of silver challenged the night. "I can't help it. I've always loved Giants. Any world that has Haruchai and Ranyhyn and Ramen and Insequent and even Elohim in it is precious. But there really is no substitute for Giants."
Jeremiah agreed with him.
The Ironhand answered Covenant's moment of power with a flash of her teeth. "Then, Timewarden," she said, "let us now vindicate your love."


Rime Coldspray starts her speech with an uncompromisingly realistic assessment of their situation, admitting that even triumph in this quest to find and defeat the Despiser might well be fruitless as the Worm finds the EarthBlood and shatters the world. But she channels the spirit of mighty Lord Mhoram in a sense by declaring she isn't daunted and that the most important thing isfor the company to do is fight for the world they believe in and care about. Stirring thoughts, refective of the Giantish bravado that I've always loved.

I cherish her metaphoric phrase at the end of this quite: "Are we not Giants? And is not our folly the stone against which we have raised the sea of our laughter?"
What a delightfully appropriate phrase for a Giant to use!

And it's Baf Scatterwit--bless her poor, doomed heart!--who really gets the healing laughter going among the company.

I loved that even Jeremiah, who "Had heard too little genuine laughter in his life", is uplifted by all this genuine Giantish joy and courage. I enjoyed that Lord Foul's taunts and the croyel's malice were made by comparison to seem as empty as "taunts from the bottom of an abandoned well". (Another phrase that tickled me!)

It did my heart a lot of good to read Thomas Covenant plainly acknowledging in words his love for the Giants, and I was satisfied in knowing long-dissociated Jeremiah could be touched enough to share TC's sentiments deeply inside himself. I also liked that his passion in proclaiming his love for the Giants was strong enough to evoke a flash of power from his ring--an impressive flash that was noticed by the Giants, compounding the message of the sincerity of his love for them.

"Then, Timewarden, let us now vindicate your love."
As life-affirming a launch to a dangerous quest as anything she could have uttered.

When I read a book, I like it when there are what I consider to be emotionally gratifying moments between the characters. And I like the book I read when there seems to be enough of those emotionally gratifying moments to satisfy me. So, I like The Last Dark because I feel there have been plenty of those satisfying, gratifying moments to make me glad that I have read the book and that I have it to read over again and again. Big Grin
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great post!

I especially loved this part:
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As the Giants began to subside, Covenant muttered, "Stone and Sea are deep in life." He seemed to be quoting. "Two unalterable symbols of the world.: Then he lifted his head to the dark heavens, the decimated stars. From his ring, a brief flash of silver challenged the night. "I can't help it. I've always loved Giants. Any world that has Haruchai and Ranyhyn and Ramen and Insequent and even Elohim in it is precious. But there really is no substitute for Giants."

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 11, 2014 11:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, the Giants are the humorous,,and there is no substitute for a sense of humor. Where would we be without the ability to laugh? Heck , even as all crumbled around them, the Giants commented on what a Tale it was to behold... Perhaps Giantish ears , it takes to hear all the joy in this book.
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