Malazan Empire: Abyss is in a daze after COLD DAYS - Malazan Empire

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Abyss is in a daze after COLD DAYS Rolling comments, review thread w SPOILERS

#21 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 07:04 AM

JUST FINISHED IT...

That was awesome.

Was it the bestest Dresden ever? No. I need to digest the book a bit before i rank it, but at a guess, it won't displace DEAD BEAT, CHANGES, GHOST STORY or DEATH MASKS from my top 4 dresdencrack fixes.

That said, it may slide in at #5, because despite a few minor shortcomings, this book had two of the BEST scenes in the entire series. I'll get to those in a moment.

But this was a sweet fix, and i expect that the shakes won't start for a good long time after this.

WARNING SPOILERS

WARNING

SPOILERS

BELOW HERE ALL THINGS COLD DAYS ARE SPOILED

SPOILERS

In some ways, this was a return to more 'classic' Dresden... a mystery to solve, multiple deadlines, multiple threats, help from the usual cast, running around Chicago looking for clues. And i enjoyed all that tho i would have liked to see more of the Nevernever. I could have lived with an entire book set there and THEN this book, but Butcher doesn't daly and he doesn't write filler and so we got a book that in some ways harkened back to classic Dresden and in others moved things forwards at an obscene pace, with some major developments and revelations.

Not surprised Harry ended the book still Winter Knight, but given the revealed role Winter serves he's now exactly where he needs to be, predatory rapist urges aside.

BEST NEW THING - i really enjoyed the training montage. Up til this, the books have always been almost 'real time'... Harry gets challenge, Harry runs like a madman, book ends. This was the first time months passed in a sequence of events and it was nicely handled, mostly because it involved Mab, Winter Queen of the faerie firing an automatic russian shotgun.

BEST NEW CHARACTER - There really weren't many in this book. Kringle Claus, arguably, but as it turned out he wasn't as new as we thought he was. I semi-guessed that twist tho i was half expecting him to be Ebenezer. That said, tho he wasn't around as much as I would have liked, i'll give it to Cat Sith. Great dialogue, interesting character, bummer how he went out, if he's actually dead. The body went out a window and into the water and given the apparent power level, Nemesis may not have totally wiped him out. I would have liked to see more of him.

BEST NEW VILLAIN - Redcap was a thug. Ace was a joke. The outsiders we saw were basically Evil Inc. Nemisis... THAT is a villain. or possibly a virus. or both. I am interested in seeing whether we get a vengeful Fix in the future, especially since he now knows about Maggie.

BEST RETURNING CHARACTER IT WAS FUN TO SEE AGAIN - Mother Winter was hysterical and creepy and awesome.

BEST EMO MOMENT - Harry and Thomas, mostly for the 'you didn't come to me for help with turning into a monster' thing.

BEST REASON TO HATE SOMEONE - Thomas, because Justine became a dietician.

BEST NEW WORD - 'vajazzle'. :twoguns:

BEST FIGHT, CHASE SCENE, ACTION SCENE AND HOLY FUCK MOMENT ALL WOUND UP INTO ONE - everything from 'Get on the bike, bitch.' to 'Tonight, we hunt OUTSIDERS.' Seriously, in a series that i love for its cinematic and brilliant action sequences, this may have been one of, if not the best.

BEST EPIC OVER-ARCING PLOT ESCALATING CRANK THE THREAT LEVEL UP TO OMEGA - Chapters 33-34. The Gates. Wow. Just Wow. And kudos to Butcher for tossing the whole 'Summer and Winter in balance' thing out the window, twisting virtually EVERYTHING we thought we knew about the fae, AND winding it into the whole Nemisis thing, AND winding that back into virtually every book all the way back to STORM FRONT. I'm exhausted just thinking about it.

BEST REASON TO LEAVE CHICAGO - someone tell Andi to give it up, pack up Butters and go hide in a cabin somewhere. Seriously the weregirl can't catch a break.

BEST GAME CHANGER I DIDN'T SEE COMING - Molly. Holy fuck that changes EVERYTHING. And the best part was how it tied together Lea helping her, everything Harry has ever done for her AND her issues with the White Council.

BEST NEW MYSTERY - What is a 'starborn' and why is Harry one? Honourable mention to wtf is up with Mac. Am wondering if 'I'm out.' actually means 'I'm an outsider'.

More to come, but those are my thoughts having Just Finished It.
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#22 User is offline   QuickTidal 

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 02:12 PM

Your two fave scenes were my two faves scenes. They will end up (I imagine) as being Series Iconic methinks.

And yeah the Molly Winter Lady thing was a final gamechanger in a book that already contained one big fuckoff gamechanger.

Vajazzle. Ha, yeah I forgot about that.

And I still think Mac is a wizard who guarded the gates before Rashid did it.
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#23 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 03:41 PM

View PostQuickTidal, on 23 November 2012 - 02:12 PM, said:

Your two fave scenes were my two faves scenes. They will end up (I imagine) as being Series Iconic methinks.


And then some.
Really have to admire the artistry of how Butcher sets those scenes up.
The chase is abrupt... sun's down, howls in the distance, it's on.
While the Gates starts with a nice stroll thru the forest with Mommy Summer that's practically placid, up until the hundreds of thousands of Winter troops holding back millions of outsiders thing.

Quote

And yeah the Molly Winter Lady thing was a final gamechanger in a book that already contained one big fuckoff gamechanger.


Does provide a nice reboot for Molly's status tho'. She sort of risked staying perpetually in the Dresden's semi-former apprentice who has certain skills and certain vulnerabilities and lurved him and drooled over Thomas and so on role. This at once made her a major player, MORE powerful than Dresden and essentially places him at her service, not the other way around. Gamechanger indeed.

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Vajazzle. Ha, yeah I forgot about that.


After that description i don't see how.

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And I still think Mac is a wizard who guarded the gates before Rashid did it.


Sharkface calling him 'Watcher'... yeah, it could work. But his healing after the shot isn't something wizards generally do.
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#24 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 04:39 PM

BEST CONVERSATION:
Harry: I was hoping Lara would kill Marcone.
Thomas: Really? I was hoping Marcone would kill Lara.

BEST SIR NOT APPEARING IN THIS MOVIE: ...relatedly i like the way Lara and Marcone were significant elements in this book without ever appearing.
Which doesn't really make up for the lack of Marcone, but hey...

Also relatedly i liked how Lara, and not Marcone, was Harry's go to if Kincaid wouldn't have done the hit on him.

THE NO SEX FOR YOU! AWARD GOES TO: Harry and Muphy really can't catcha break, can they? Ah well, at least they're being honest about the mutual attraction thing.

BEST ASSKICKING THAT WASN'T: Toot kicking Lacuna's ass early on. Her punching him in the face later was a nice follow-up.

BEST REASON FOR A REREAD: Harry completely reinterpreting what happened at the end of SUMMER KNIGHT, along with the Nemisis subplot being linked back all the way to bk 1.

BEST REASON TO BUY A HARLEY: Apparently optional accessories include a shotgun holster AND a handy grenade compartment. Did i mention how much i love Murphy?

BEST HINTS OF THINGS TO COME: Loved the reference to the conflict happening with the Fomor, and especially the refs to Ramirez beinging injured and Wild Bill holding on down in Texas... iirc he was the neophyte Warden Harry worked with once before.

SECOND PLACE FOR NO SEX FOR YOU!: Relatedly Molly's power-up probably eliminates any chance at all of her ever ending up with Ramirez. Ah well, Sarissa may need a new Knight soon...

AND YOU THINK YOUR FAMILY'S WEIRD: The Sarissa-Maeve thing... i need to reread some of the Sarissa scenes because i can't quite decide if that was hinted at. Sarissa as a future Lady, yes, but not the Maeve connection. Otoh, the hints leading to Mab's last line 'i was mortal once', were brilliantly worked in.

LOOKING FWD: in all likelyhood the Black council is a Nemisis thing, which raises the interesting point that if Nemisis has infiltrated the Denarians and the White Court vamps, then those factions have more reason to work with Harry i the future. Lara already was, but the comment that certain Houses have shifted their diets was interesting, and we know from SMALL FAVOUR that there is divsion within the Denarians.

BEST QUESTION ANSWERED: The knife in GRAVE PERIL infected Lea, which is why she was in Arctis Tor in PROVEN GUILTY.
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Posted 23 November 2012 - 04:49 PM

View PostAbyss, on 23 November 2012 - 04:39 PM, said:

BEST QUESTION ANSWERED: The knife in GRAVE PERIL infected Lea, which is why she was in Arctis Tor in PROVEN GUILTY.


That was a nice reveal as it was something I always wondered about.
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#26 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:56 PM

View PostQuickTidal, on 23 November 2012 - 04:49 PM, said:

View PostAbyss, on 23 November 2012 - 04:39 PM, said:

BEST QUESTION ANSWERED: The knife in GRAVE PERIL infected Lea, which is why she was in Arctis Tor in PROVEN GUILTY.


That was a nice reveal as it was something I always wondered about.



And leads us to the interesting point that Mab can cure the Nemisis infection, assuming the patient is powerful enough to survive being sealed in magic faerie ice for a year or three.

Also sad because Cat Sith probably could have been saved, tho i remain uncertain we've seen the last of him.

The existance of the Mab-cure and the conversation at the end of GS also pretty much proves that the parasite in Harry's head can't be Nemisis, because Mab was aware of it and wouldn't have sent a Nemisis infected Harry to take out infected Maeve.

So we're back to Lash or something else and dammit i wish i could remember when those headaches started...
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#27 User is offline   Hound 

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 05:45 PM

I'm normally not one who talks a lot about books afterwards, but I just finished COLD DAYS and holy fuck that was so so so awesome I don't know where to start.
(I apologize for spelling and grammar mistakes, English is not my first language)

Uhm, probably not the best Dresden book in the series, however it did have some of the best scenes in the entire series. I'll come back to that later.

Loved the references to Lewis Carroll and Grimm.
Had a laugh at the 'vajazzle' thing.

I googled various names and did you know that the Norse equivalent of the Erlking / Lord Herne s Odin (of who we first think as Santa)? Wouldn't surprise me if Shakespeare had had a visit from Mab somewhere down the line to write something about the Erlking (or Herne the Hunter).
Oh and a kringle is a Nordic variety of a pretzel :admin:

Cat Sith is awesome btw.

Harry's new car was brilliant hahahaha. A funeral car! LOL! Dark blue with flames!!
And then the Sir Za Winter Lord Knight's Guard with Major General Toot-Toot! (I have a cat who's name is Toot-Toot btw)
The watch my back part was also hilarious. And a bit later King Leonidas :nuke:

Bob has internet access! Nice.

Molly seems quite okay, which is good. Would love to know the story behind the svartalves and the 'honor' thing.

Aaww.... the reunion with Thomas. Sweet (sort of).

Wow, an awful lot of stairs, but Demonreach is WHAT??? Wow! Seriously, didn't expect THAT! And and the naagloshii are in MINIMUM SECURITY??!! Djeez, I don't think I wanna know what's precisely in the maximum security part....
And Harry is a warden. Great. Like having access to a freaking big nuclear timebomb, but much worse. Or something.

And a skull bursting parasite. Cool. Could be Lasciel, but I'm guessing it's something different. However it seems that Molly can fix it.

Cool, a movie! Lol. With a love scene, ha! And a romance triangle subplot. I like Bob. Can't help it.

Ah, Lara was Harry's second option.

Fix.... don't you have something better to do?

Uuh... Mac what? A watcher? I did another Google search and it seems that a watcher is some sort of angel. There are good, bad and rebellious ones. Also referred to as "those who are awake" and as "guards".
That does make sense I think, Mac being a watcher nd owning a pub. Also the whole watcher thing makes me think of gargoyles for no good reason :sofa:

That whole Lily/Meave/Mab thing is a mess. Liked the way Butcher handled that, all the way back to Storm Front. Need to do a reread of the entire series.
Also nice to see Murphy again.

Haha! Toot and Lacuna! LOL!

Mother Winter is seriously creepy. Ew, pots with THAT? Typhus, smallpox, black death, cholera, malaria.... OMG. And more.
Mother Summer seems nice btw. Also, Athropos was one of the three goddesses of Fate and Destiny. Athropos was the oldest of the three and also known as the inflexible or inevitable. She's the one who cut the "thread" of mortals with her shears (I'm now thinking of Hercules (yeah, the Disney movie)).
On the other hand, Skuld is of Norse mythology, one of three Norns who decided the fates of people. And she was ones a Valkyrie.

HOLY FUCK!!!! OMG!!!!! REALLY???? OMG THAT IS SO COOL!!!!! Winter defending the world against Outsiders! Mab indeed does more then backstabbing :D And Titania protects the world against Mab. How nice. Still a balance thing, but completely different! Wow. Really. Wow. So cool.

Ooh and the Gatekeeper keeps the Gates so to speak. Nice...!!!!

Haha White Council paperwork.
Waaaaaaahh a flying carpet!!!!!!

Ha! Five simultaneous conversations. Lol. Men are stupid (no offence).

Aer-o-smith - Arrowsmith. Lol.

MOUSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

THE HUNT IS JOINING HARRY!!!!! BADASS!!! Loved that whole scene. One of the best, maybe THE best of the entire series.

And then the whole Demonreach/circle/Meave/Lily/Mab/Fix/killing thing. Wow. Mab was once a mortal? Brilliant!! Makes the Sarissa BFF with Mab thing more clear. Sarissa's a sister of Maeve? Seriously... and she's now of Summer. And holy fuck Molly is the new Winter Lady!!!

Molly the new Winter Lady was necessary for the character I think. She needed some development and it makes sense with Lea being her trainer. Curious how her parents will react to that. I missed Lea btw.

I like Mab more now. She has her weaknesses and vulnerabilities. Makes her more human and thus more likeable and a tiny bit more understandable.

The "there's a storm coming" made me think of Batman :gando:

The book totally lived up to my expectations. Can't wait for the next Dresden Files. In the meantime I'll do a reread of the series.
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Posted 28 November 2012 - 04:18 AM

Finished. (I also read it all in one sitting because I couldn't put it down)

I guessed the 'shocking twist' that Maeve was infected. Did not see Molly becoming the winter lady or that Sarissa was Maeve's sister and would become Summer Lady.

The prison in at least 4 dimensions was pretty awesome, as was the crazy amount of wards and whatnot. Just think that Ebenezer has THE MERLINs journals and could possibly have the Genus Loci of Demonreach's memories (since it happened on the Island) and Bob's vision/knowledge and his 'starchild' thing that makes him the bane of outsiders... this could get crazy.
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Posted 28 November 2012 - 02:37 PM

View PostHound, on 26 November 2012 - 05:45 PM, said:

...I googled various names and did you know that the Norse equivalent of the Erlking / Lord Herne s Odin (of who we first think as Santa)? Wouldn't surprise me if Shakespeare had had a visit from Mab somewhere down the line to write something about the Erlking (or Herne the Hunter).


MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM and Neil Gaiman would agree with you.

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...Harry's new car was brilliant hahahaha. A funeral car! LOL! Dark blue with flames!!


I forgot to mention the new wheels. Almost as legendary as the Beetle.


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Molly seems quite okay, which is good. Would love to know the story behind the svartalves and the 'honor' thing.


Upcoming short story i think.

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Cool, a movie! Lol. With a love scene, ha! And a romance triangle subplot. I like Bob. Can't help it.


Obi-Wan/Leia/Jenna Jameson.
Nuff said.

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Uuh... Mac what? A watcher? I did another Google search and it seems that a watcher is some sort of angel. There are good, bad and rebellious ones. Also referred to as "those who are awake" and as "guards".
That does make sense I think, Mac being a watcher nd owning a pub. Also the whole watcher thing makes me think of gargoyles for no good reason


S'funny, i just had a huge HIGHLANDER:THE SERIES flashback.
I think the pub owning Watcher's name there was even 'Mac'.

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HOLY FUCK!!!! OMG!!!!! REALLY???? OMG THAT IS SO COOL!!!!! Winter defending the world against Outsiders! Mab indeed does more then backstabbing :p And Titania protects the world against Mab. How nice. Still a balance thing, but completely different! Wow. Really. Wow. So cool.




i KNOW!

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THE HUNT IS JOINING HARRY!!!!! BADASS!!! Loved that whole scene. One of the best, maybe THE best of the entire series.


I KNOW!!!!!!

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The "there's a storm coming" made me think of Batman :p


I think it was a TERMINATOR ref, actually.

View PostObdigore, on 28 November 2012 - 04:18 AM, said:

Finished. (I also read it all in one sitting because I couldn't put it down)


Heh.


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I guessed the 'shocking twist' that Maeve was infected. Did not see Molly becoming the winter lady or that Sarissa was Maeve's sister and would become Summer Lady.

The prison in at least 4 dimensions was pretty awesome, as was the crazy amount of wards and whatnot. Just think that Ebenezer has THE MERLINs journals and could possibly have the Genus Loci of Demonreach's memories (since it happened on the Island) and Bob's vision/knowledge and his 'starchild' thing that makes him the bane of outsiders... this WILL get crazy.


Fixed!
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Posted 29 November 2012 - 04:47 AM

I believe the jars of disease and disaster belonged to Mother Summer - as she would "grow" them. Mother Winter just wanted to get a head start on eliminating the weak or something.

I'm of the belief that Mac is an Outsider. Not as powerful as He Who Walks Before and certainly not like He Who Walks Behind. Thomas playing dumb the whole time with Dresden is really interesting. Thomas being a true believer in the secret society's mission is a nice tidbit for future books and parallels Dresden's involvement with things he'd rather not let Thomas know about.

There were a couple clunky scenes - like Butcher explaining will and soulfire all over again when the near entirety of Ghost Story was about that. However, every action scene in this book rocked.

Rashid and Mother Summer combined to say something along the lines of it just being Winter's turn to fight the Outsiders - not that it is their eternal task.

Pg. 340 in my edition: "There are always Outsiders trying to tear their way in. There are always forces in place to stop them. In our age, it is the task of Winter to defend these boundaries, with the help of certain others to support them. Think of them as... an immune system for the mortal world."

That's an interesting concept to think about. Extend that to other worlds, where angels like Uriel are fighting the Denarians or other beings and the Outsiders are possibly present there as well. That might explain where the Denarians go in between the "show up every five books" thing.

The absence of Maggie and the Carpenters is significant. Ivy too. She knew about the maps Molly and Lacuna made at the very least.
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Posted 29 November 2012 - 12:57 PM

Skipped sleep one night but it was worth it. Turns out the position of Winter Knight is actually quite right for Dresden. Everything he goes through shapes him to be the ultimate Outsider opponent, destiny calling. He's probably half one himself somehow, has been hinted before and now it's out in the open with starborn. Parasite not necesarily Nemesis was a good call, I didn't see that. Molly being taken was emotional and opens up so many possible directions for the story. Have to go back and reread the Mothers part, probably lots of hints I didn't get. There's bound to be more to the Outsider-Nemesis threat. Where does Hell fit in? There was a line somewhere about the adversary, "who the hell that was" or similar that could be just the figure of speech but Butcher likes those games.

Well fantastic. Can I have another one? Please? I guess at least there will be a short story about Molly and the svartalvs fairly soon (or is it out already?).
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#32 User is offline   alt146 

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 01:07 PM

Just finished now. :p If Changes was the end of Act 1 and Ghost Story was the interlude, this is very much the start of Act 2. Loved it, this is probably the worst I've wished Butcher there was another fix waiting for me since I started the series.

There where a whole bunch of pretty big bombshells dropped, some of which I thought were pretty clever. The gatekeeper being the keeper of actual gates, wardens being descended from an actual warden, the nature of faeire etc. I'm slightly irritated by the whole Nemesis thing though. There's been hints for ages that there's been a single big bad behind all the bad mojo that Harry keeps running into, but Outsider mind control voodoo just doesn't gel completely for me. Maybe it's because there isn't really a good explanation as to what needs to happen for someone to be infected/possessed and what the limitations are... If Nemesis can grab beings as powerful as Maeve and Cat Sith and has been around since the beginning of the series, way more people should have been turned to the dark side by now. It also made it really obvious that Mab wasn't infected, since if Nemesis had Mab under control it could easily dispense with the sneakiness, turn 90% of the winter court and open the gates (which is its assumed objective at this point). It also seems unlikely that Harry wouldn't have been infected any of the millions of times he's been at the mercy of his (presumably manipulated by Nemesis either directly or indirectly) enemies. Still, it's an interesting concept and maybe it will make more sense once it's gotten a couple more books exposure and fleshing out.

I think the winter knight thing will last a couple more books at least. How long did Lashiel-inside-Harry's-head last for? I think it will have a similar, but much more obvious influence on the ongoing battle between Harry and his darker nature as that storyline did.

Was anyone else pissed that Molly became the Winter Lady? I get the desire to develop her character and this definitely changes things, but I'm kinda sad since I hoped Molly and Harry would hook up in like 50 years time and I don't like the fact that Molly will now eventually end up like Maeve.

Other than that, absolutely loved it, one of the most fun books I've read in ages. Not quite on the level of Dead Beats, but Butcher definitely turned the dial to 11.
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#33 User is offline   Chance 

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 03:34 PM

Not sure I like this tendency Butchers gotten into of leaving major plot threads dangling at the end of the book, would it have been that hard to have a somewhat later chapter like in so many other dresden novels instead of cliffhangerish endings. Its made me irritated each time I put down one of the trilogy (Change, Ghost Story and now Cold Days).

Still a good one with some of the best scenes (everything Cat Sith, birthday party first parts, demonreachs secrets, the mothers, the gates, The ending and fight inside the circle) and some pretty bad scenes (more or less every fight we really didn't really need) in my oppinion, uneven but those epic scenes still make it a really good one.

View Postalt146, on 29 November 2012 - 01:07 PM, said:

Was anyone else pissed that Molly became the Winter Lady? I get the desire to develop her character and this definitely changes things, but I'm kinda sad since I hoped Molly and Harry would hook up in like 50 years time and I don't like the fact that Molly will now eventually end up like Maeve.


Its pretty strongly implied that Maeve was insane and not a proper winter lady, I'd guess she might get somewhat Maevish but not insanly so. Also a lot of the book was about showing how strong people can keep some part of humanity going under the mantles of power both Mab and Titania acted against their basic nature during the book in major ways.

This post has been edited by Chance: 29 November 2012 - 03:48 PM

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 03:46 PM

Why was Lea gone the entire book? Will we find out that she and Molly are doing something with the svartalfs? It's very strange that Lea wasn't at Dresden's birthday/official debut.
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#35 User is offline   Chance 

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 03:54 PM

View Postamphibian, on 29 November 2012 - 03:46 PM, said:

Why was Lea gone the entire book? Will we find out that she and Molly are doing something with the svartalfs? It's very strange that Lea wasn't at Dresden's birthday/official debut.


A very good guess is that the molly short story is going to adress the svartalfs.

Possibly Lea was taking up Mabs obligations while Mab focused on the Maeve matter but who knows. With the outsider attack it seems she Lea might take Mabs place at the Gates while she is at a birthday part and so on...

This post has been edited by Chance: 29 November 2012 - 03:54 PM

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 03:59 PM

View Postamphibian, on 29 November 2012 - 04:47 AM, said:

I believe the jars of disease and disaster belonged to Mother Summer - as she would "grow" them. Mother Winter just wanted to get a head start on eliminating the weak or something.


That was a great bit, especially 'Oh, not time for that one YET.'.

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I'm of the belief that Mac is an Outsider. Not as powerful as He Who Walks Before and certainly not like He Who Walks Behind.


Possible but didn't we get a previous hint re Mac that had him as some sort of Kincaid-type merc? i'm blanking on where tho...

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Thomas playing dumb the whole time with Dresden is really interesting. Thomas being a true believer in the secret society's mission is a nice tidbit for future books and parallels Dresden's involvement with things he'd rather not let Thomas know about.


Very much so, and i'm hoping the comment about the warehouse was in fact a BACKUP ref and that Thomas' wetworks side comes into play later.
His relationship with Harry seems as strong as ever notwithstanding that he's feeding again, and the 'monster' common element adds another bond.


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Rashid and Mother Summer combined to say something along the lines of it just being Winter's turn to fight the Outsiders - not that it is their eternal task.

Pg. 340 in my edition: "There are always Outsiders trying to tear their way in. There are always forces in place to stop them. In our age, it is the task of Winter to defend these boundaries, with the help of certain others to support them. Think of them as... an immune system for the mortal world."


I read that different... I took that as Winter's raison d'etre in that Winter was created to defend the Gates (and Summer to counter Winter), and in another time some other force would do it, not that Winter already existed and was dreafted into the role.

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That's an interesting concept to think about. Extend that to other worlds, where angels like Uriel are fighting the Denarians or other beings and the Outsiders are possibly present there as well. That might explain where the Denarians go in between the "show up every five books" thing.


I think that the Denarians and 'Hell' have a vested interest in the Outsiders NOT taking over, and that's why Nic' was so pissed at Horned Nathaniel and the Black Council. It's an 'enemy of my enemy' situation.

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The absence of Maggie and the Carpenters is significant.


How so? It was addressed quite clearly that Harry was avoiding Maggie, and Michael and Charity would have been wherever Maggie was.

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Ivy too. She knew about the maps Molly and Lacuna made at the very least.


No doubt, but she's generally sworn to non-involvement (we saw Dresden pushing the bounds of that in CHANGES) and he likely would have kept Winter clear of her.

View PostPig Iron, on 29 November 2012 - 12:57 PM, said:

Skipped sleep one night but it was worth it.


Heh.

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Turns out the position of Winter Knight is actually quite right for Dresden. Everything he goes through shapes him to be the ultimate Outsider opponent, destiny calling. He's probably half one himself somehow, has been hinted before and now it's out in the open with starborn.


Agreed and i suspect even his ongoing struggle against Winter's nastier impulses are part of that. As we saw, Dresden is going to have to get nasty to defeat Nemesis and co., but that would be pointless if he ended up being as bad as they were. I suspect his inner struggles will be a big point in future storylines.

And also keep him from getting laid for at least three more books.

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... I guess at least there will be a short story about Molly and the svartalvs fairly soon (or is it out already?).


I'm pretty sure it's coming in an anthology about powerful magic women shortly if not out already. I recall seeing something about it on Butcher's site, assuming it's the same story.


View Postalt146, on 29 November 2012 - 01:07 PM, said:

...There where a whole bunch of pretty big bombshells dropped, some of which I thought were pretty clever. ... wardens being descended from an actual warden,


Yah, that's a nice f-u to the White Council... Dresden is the only 'real' warden!

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... I'm slightly irritated by the whole Nemesis thing though. There's been hints for ages that there's been a single big bad behind all the bad mojo that Harry keeps running into, but Outsider mind control voodoo just doesn't gel completely for me. Maybe it's because there isn't really a good explanation as to what needs to happen for someone to be infected/possessed and what the limitations are... If Nemesis can grab beings as powerful as Maeve and Cat Sith and has been around since the beginning of the series, way more people should have been turned to the dark side by now.

....It also seems unlikely that Harry wouldn't have been infected any of the millions of times he's been at the mercy of his (presumably manipulated by Nemesis either directly or indirectly) enemies. Still, it's an interesting concept and maybe it will make more sense once it's gotten a couple more books exposure and fleshing out.


Point being we don't have the full story yet. Infection may not be straightforward, or another element ('starborn', soulfire, etc etc) may come into play.

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It also made it really obvious that Mab wasn't infected, since if Nemesis had Mab under control it could easily dispense with the sneakiness, turn 90% of the winter court and open the gates (which is its assumed objective at this point).


I took it as a key hint but the other element is presumably the gatekeeper and Titania could prevent that so Nemesis had to be more subtle.

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Was anyone else pissed that Molly became the Winter Lady? I get the desire to develop her character and this definitely changes things, but I'm kinda sad since I hoped Molly and Harry would hook up in like 50 years time and I don't like the fact that Molly will now eventually end up like Maeve.


I liked the development. Seriously changes the dynamic between Harry and Molly, and Molly and everyone, changes her status quo from perpetual almost victim to serious player.
There's no guarantee she ends up like Maeve and especially with Harry also part of Winter.


View PostChance, on 29 November 2012 - 03:34 PM, said:

Its pretty strongly implied that Maeve was insane and not a proper winter lady, I'd guess she might get somewhat Maevish but not insanly so. Also a lot of the book was about showing how strong people can keep some part of humanity going under the mantles of power both Mab and Titania acted against their basic nature during the book in major ways.


Exactly.

And Maeve had some serious mommy-issues.

Which raises some interesting issues now that Sarissa, Mab's 'favourite' daughter, is now the Summer Lady... Titania likely can't be too happy about that link to Winter. or maybe she will be since it gives her leverage on Mab... fuck....
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#37 User is offline   Eddie Dean 

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 05:36 PM

I felt kind of led on a false trail when the start of the book was talking about the "when" the attack would come. It never really touched on that again in the ending. I don't know, I though maybe we would see some time traveling by Harry or something.


But overall, what a great book. Read it all in about 6-7 hours and I need more damnit!


Also, Mac is referred to as a "watcher". Some kind of angel maybe? Or a retired gatekeeper?


Also, Also, "Where is your red lightsaber" Ha!
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Posted 29 November 2012 - 06:39 PM

View PostEddie Dean, on 29 November 2012 - 05:36 PM, said:

I felt kind of led on a false trail when the start of the book was talking about the "when" the attack would come. It never really touched on that again in the ending. I don't know, I though maybe we would see some time traveling by Harry or something.


That was a tricky point because it's not clear whether Merlin crafted the ritual by 'simply' coming back to the island five times, or time travelled to five different times.
And the 'blast echo back in time' thing was a bit confusing.

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Also, Also, "Where is your red lightsaber" Ha!


Every Cat Sith scene was greatness and i seriously hope we see him again.

The 'i would be more useful as a double agent' line he went out on cuts both ways, after all.
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Posted 29 November 2012 - 06:40 PM

View PostAbyss, on 29 November 2012 - 03:59 PM, said:

I read that different... I took that as Winter's raison d'etre in that Winter was created to defend the Gates (and Summer to counter Winter), and in another time some other force would do it, not that Winter already existed and was dreafted into the role.

I don't know. I think that Winter/Summer and the fae are irrevocably linked to the development of humankind (as per the quiet time talks with Dresden and various Fae) and that some other force in the time of dinosaurs and other forms of pre-human consciousness fought the war with the Outsiders. It could be possible that the Outsiders too are linked to human consciousness, but given how they keep emphasizing their ancientness, I don't think this is likely. I believe that the prior defenders of the Gates either collapsed or were relieved by Winter and at some point, Winter will be replaced in turn by something else.

I'm actually of the opinion that the Outsiders and the Fomor are NOT the big bad guys of the series. In my Crazy Theory DresdenLand, the big bad guys would be the Denarians, the Devil in Hell and whatever else. Those are the primordial forces - they created the universe and are fighting to remake it or destroy it or preserve it or improve it and so on. Which is why the Denarians resent the Outsiders/Nemesis trying to screw up their games.

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How so? It was addressed quite clearly that Harry was avoiding Maggie, and Michael and Charity would have been wherever Maggie was.

I'm working off my crazy Dresden hunches, but I really do think that the Carpenters being so conveniently absent was the result of some backstage manipulations. Mouse being free for that long is awesome for Harry and the Carpenters are now protected by angels, but something is suspicious about this. Harry didn't go to Maggie right away either. Something is keeping him away from them and I suspect it's the Denarians getting ready for a reappearance or Lasciel working in his head.

It's bunches of hunches, but hey, it preserves the fervor until the next hit.
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Posted 29 November 2012 - 06:59 PM

View PostAbyss, on 29 November 2012 - 06:39 PM, said:

View PostEddie Dean, on 29 November 2012 - 05:36 PM, said:

I felt kind of led on a false trail when the start of the book was talking about the "when" the attack would come. It never really touched on that again in the ending. I don't know, I though maybe we would see some time traveling by Harry or something.


That was a tricky point because it's not clear whether Merlin crafted the ritual by 'simply' coming back to the island five times, or time travelled to five different times.
And the 'blast echo back in time' thing was a bit confusing.


See, I had recent DOCTOR WHO too look for this....the TARDIS explodes at some point in the future, and because its heart is a dying star the explosion send cracks rippling back through time causing mass vanishings ect. So basically the same thing, an explosion in another time causing ripples through time around it....like a stone in a pond.
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