Malazan Empire: 2020 Malazan Re-read: Deadhouse Gates - Malazan Empire

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2020 Malazan Re-read: Deadhouse Gates Starts february 1st

#101 User is offline   Aptorian 

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Posted 23 February 2020 - 12:48 PM

P. 744-745

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The train had stretched out, those fleeter of foot slipping ever farther ahead. The elderly surrounded the historian, each step a tortured struggle. Many simply stopped and sat down on the road to await the inevitable. Duiker screamed at them, threatened them, but it was no use. He saw a child, no more than eighteen months old, wandering lost, arms outstretched, dry-eyed and appallingly silent. Duiker rode close, leaned over in his saddle and swept the child into one arm. Tiny hands gripped the torn fragments of his shirt.


Quote


Spotting one guardsman bearing the insignia of a captain, the historian rode up to him. ‘You! Take this child!’ The man reached up to close his hands around the silent, wide-eyed toddler. ‘Are you Duiker?’ the captain asked. ‘Aye.’ ‘You’re to report to the High Fist immediately, sir – there, on the left-hand tower—’ ‘That bastard will have to wait,’ Duiker growled. ‘I will see every damned refugee through first! Now run, Captain, but tell me your name, for there may well be a mother or father still alive for that child.’ ‘Keneb, sir, and I will take care of the lass until then, I swear it.’


Is this the first appearance of Grub?
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#102 User is offline   Aptorian 

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Posted 23 February 2020 - 03:07 PM

I've reached the last pages and I can't continue reading. Even though I've read it before and know what happens I'm so fucking angry with the nobles and Pormqual and Korbolo Dom.
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#103 User is offline   JPK 

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Posted 23 February 2020 - 06:03 PM

Bult to Captain Sulmar in chapter 15:

Quote

"You mean they will hasten to relieve us?" Bult's frown was exaggerated. "Now I am confused, Captain. The High First holds his army in Aren. More, he holds the entire Seven Cities fleet as well. Neither has moved in months. He has had countless opportunities to dispatch either force to our aid. Tell me, Captain, in your family's hunting estates, have you ever seen a deer caught in lantern light? How it stands, frozen, unable to do anything. The High Fist is that deer. Coltaine could deliver this train to a place not three miles up the coast from Aren and Pormqual would not set forth to deliver us. Do you truly believe that an even greater plight, such as you envisage for us in Ubaryd, will shame the High Fist into action?"


Jesus, that's not even foreshadowing really. He just straight up tells us exactly what's going to happen outside Aren.
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#104 User is offline   Macros 

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Posted 23 February 2020 - 07:29 PM

Aw man Apt I am so with you.


Absolutely despise the nobles, compounded by the knowledge that this is real behaviour by rich fuckers
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#105 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 24 February 2020 - 04:23 AM

View PostAptorian, on 23 February 2020 - 12:48 PM, said:

P. 744-745
....
Is this the first appearance of Grub?


Yes. Keneb gets the gender wrong.
...unless he lost that kid and picked up another shortly after.
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#106 User is offline   Aptorian 

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Posted 24 February 2020 - 10:10 AM

Finished the story. After a break it wasn't so hard getting through the ending but maaan do I hate these fictional characters for their fictional crimes and failures. Ugh!

Great book. I found Felisin less tiresome this time around, I think age makes me more sympathetic to her bitterness and hurt.

One thing I didn't remember was, how thin Kalam and Fiddler's plotline is. The Empress seems to have tried to kill us. Let's go kill her the two of us.

And then, to hide their tracks or distract the empire, Kalam initiates a holy war that probably kills a million people. Whyyy??? Wasn't he trying to save the empire from an evil ruler? First of all this should have been a schism between Fiddler and Kalam that should have made them enemies and severed his link to the empire. Second of all, if we assume Kalam seriously is about saving the empire, how the hell is that poor defense Laseen presents at the end enough to stop Kalam? And why does she let him go when he just did irreparable harm to her empire? Sure the rebellion was bound to happen but come on!

The logic is cheesecloth thin.
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#107 User is offline   D'rek 

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Posted 24 February 2020 - 03:38 PM

View PostAptorian, on 24 February 2020 - 10:10 AM, said:

And then, to hide their tracks or distract the empire, Kalam initiates a holy war that probably kills a million people. Whyyy??? Wasn't he trying to save the empire from an evil ruler? First of all this should have been a schism between Fiddler and Kalam that should have made them enemies and severed his link to the empire. Second of all, if we assume Kalam seriously is about saving the empire, how the hell is that poor defense Laseen presents at the end enough to stop Kalam? And why does she let him go when he just did irreparable harm to her empire? Sure the rebellion was bound to happen but come on!

The logic is cheesecloth thin.


It really is. IIRC at the time there was some speculation that Kalam still held a lot of loyalty/sympathy to the squashed pre-Malazan Seven Cities rule, or that there was a secret other objective at work, but none of that came up in later books. Kalam is never shown later to care much about the Falah'ds or about all the people that died because of the Whirlwind Rebellion, and it's not like he's heartless. And the confrontation with Laseen never seems to have any later impact, except for the similarity with the end of Bonehunters.

Granted, the Whirlwind Rebellion would probably have happened without Kalam's involvement. Sha'ik elder getting killed by the Red Blades wasn't supposed to happen, and Leoman and Toblakai basically improvised a new one. If the book had never been delivered, presumably the various head honchos of the Whirlwind would have likewise improvised their way out of that and any other conundrum. But Kalam still ought to feel some remorse from being part of it.

For that matter, the Path of Hands storyline is rather inconsequential, too. And why couldn't Crokus/Apsalar/Fiddler have just taken another boat to Quon Tali and Itko Kan...?

Definitely feels like some of this might come from DG being the second novel. Maybe Kalam was supposed to be more amoral and partially loyal to 7C rebels in a previous draft.

View Postworrywort, on 14 September 2012 - 08:07 PM, said:

I kinda love it when D'rek unleashes her nerd wrath, as I knew she would here. Sorry innocent bystanders, but someone's gotta be the kindling.
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#108 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 24 February 2020 - 03:59 PM

Here's the thing... per upthread, Kalam didn't put 7C on the cusp of rebellion before he even got there. Kalam didn't stick Rel and others in a position to completely subvert and corrupt Aren and most of the Malazan CoC. Kalam didn't reassemble the Whirlwind army. Kalam didn't even go looking for the Book, it just fell into his hands and he took it because it guaranteed passage without challenge from most of the rebels.

Yes, Kalam has a mad on for Laseen. Yes, he's gunning for her. Yes, he takes utter advantage of the situation in 7C to come at Laseen from a unexpected angle.

But it seems to me that everything that happens on 7C would have happened without Kalam. The one question is whether Dryjha would have fully manifest in Felisin, but honestly, how much difference did that make? The Whirlwind Wall was amazingly ineffective, the factions in the Whirlwind Army were never united, and Tavore walked right in, more or less.

So to my thinkymeatz, the plot that revolves around Kalam and the rebellion is not problematic, it actually makes sense once you put aside the idea that Kalam is responsible for everything. He isn't... not even close.


Now, the idea that Fiddler packed up Apsalar and Cutter to support Kalam so he could get all the way to Malaz Island, confront Laseen and get closure on his issues with her is harder to reconcile. My entirely speculative take was that WJ and Dujek figured Kalam had to sort his own shit out, and he would either make peace with Laseen or kill her and either way was fine by them. They sent Fiddler along to try to keep him alive and Apsalar to get Shadowthrone and Cotillion's tool away from them because Rake and Brood would have had.... concerns.

Let's not overlook that Laseen clearly knew Kalam was coming, put Pearl in place to slow him down, and used Kalam to purge the Claw rather severely. And then not even be in the building when he finally got to her. She knew he was coming. She planned for it, hell she even used it to her advantage (even if the purge backfired spectacularly and let Rel's Black Hand develop). It's never been suggested that WJ or Dujek or anyone else warned Laseen, yet she was clearly warned and ready.

How much of this is rationalizing and how much reasonably flows from the book(s) is tricky. Pon the reread so far i'm fairly comfortable with the first point re Kalam, 7C, and the rebellion.
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#109 User is offline   Traveller 

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Posted 24 February 2020 - 08:50 PM

None of that mission seems like it's intended to be actually realised from the outset. Their plan is primarily how to get there, and not how to kill her when they do. And they take two stupidly different routes to get there.
So that's the story. And what was the real lesson? Don't leave things in the fridge.
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#110 User is offline   Zerv 

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Posted 29 February 2020 - 11:59 AM

What do you guys make of the Vathar butterflies seemingly claiming Sormo's soul? Could be part of Hood's payback for the warlocks' messing around with the spirits (as quoted up-thread, along with the mention that they will pay for it), though extending Hood's association with flies and capemoths to butterflies seems like a bit of a stretch.
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#111 User is offline   Aptorian 

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Posted 29 February 2020 - 12:41 PM

I was wondering about it as well. More peculiar, at one point I believe Duiker remarks that there are something like eleven warlock souls inside Sormo. Was he a kind of Wickan Quick Ben?
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#112 User is offline   Whisperzzzzzzz 

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Posted 29 February 2020 - 03:17 PM

View PostAptorian, on 29 February 2020 - 12:41 PM, said:

I was wondering about it as well. More peculiar, at one point I believe Duiker remarks that there are something like eleven warlock souls inside Sormo. Was he a kind of Wickan Quick Ben?


Wick Ben?
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#113 User is offline   Keysi 

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Posted 01 March 2020 - 03:55 AM

View PostTraveller, on 19 February 2020 - 10:18 AM, said:

'Those souls must have remained, held by the spirit, never released to Hood. We’ll pay for this, Corporal. Every one of us.’

Interesting couple of lines in there.

The latest interview with SE is well worth a listen. If you haven't heard it, he discusses the religious aspect to Coltaines journey, and how practical but hidden solutions (like the sappers paving the river) get turned into myths or miracles (walking on water) and how all the elements of the Chain of Dogs and how the story is told after becomes the beginning of a religion. Duiker presumably records it, there are witnesses on the walls of Aren that aren't among the number that march out and die. The myths and story of Coltaines fall and rebirth are going to be further explored in a later book apparently, with the CoDs the start of a Crow cult/religion.

I guess at the point Coltaine smashed Geslers nose and breaks his hand, and shows he's on the way to ascension, shows how he's already gained enough worshippers to start that process.

Just worth noting, as some details on the journey gain significance when seen in retrospect, in the way events can be interpreted as impossible feats or miracles.


Where can I find this interview, and all the others?
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#114 User is offline   Zerv 

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Posted 01 March 2020 - 09:35 AM

 Keysi, on 01 March 2020 - 03:55 AM, said:

 Traveller, on 19 February 2020 - 10:18 AM, said:

'Those souls must have remained, held by the spirit, never released to Hood. We'll pay for this, Corporal. Every one of us.'

Interesting couple of lines in there.

The latest interview with SE is well worth a listen. If you haven't heard it, he discusses the religious aspect to Coltaines journey, and how practical but hidden solutions (like the sappers paving the river) get turned into myths or miracles (walking on water) and how all the elements of the Chain of Dogs and how the story is told after becomes the beginning of a religion. Duiker presumably records it, there are witnesses on the walls of Aren that aren't among the number that march out and die. The myths and story of Coltaines fall and rebirth are going to be further explored in a later book apparently, with the CoDs the start of a Crow cult/religion.

I guess at the point Coltaine smashed Geslers nose and breaks his hand, and shows he's on the way to ascension, shows how he's already gained enough worshippers to start that process.

Just worth noting, as some details on the journey gain significance when seen in retrospect, in the way events can be interpreted as impossible feats or miracles.


Where can I find this interview, and all the others?


Here (or just search for Ten Very Big Books wherever you listen to podcasts).
And here's the one for GotM.
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#115 User is offline   Keysi 

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Posted 01 March 2020 - 05:14 PM

Thank you kindly.
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#116 User is offline   Keysi 

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Posted 22 April 2020 - 11:01 PM

I never saw it coming at the time, but in the reread it's pretty obvious Perl is that Salk Elan.
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