Welcome to my liveblog of Rhythm of War! Index post here. Beware of spoilers.
Chapter 46 (The Weight of the Tower)
Epigraph: I still don’t know who this could be. In a fit of insanity I almost assigned it to Taravangian, but Raboniel is still the best fit despite everything. I don’t believe it’s her, though. I guess Venli could fit, at a stretch--we were just reminded she does research. Oh, wait. Is this her memoirs / study journal of her early form research? That could actually work well. She’s not really the writing type, but she did have a partner in her research back in Words of Radiance, and apparently Eshonai’s record keeping suggestion got their mother’s approval so Venli might have adopted it. I’m still not convinced, but it’s a better working theory than I had before.
Why is this a Raboniel and Navani section if Kaladin gets the chapter icon? I mean, obviously it’s going to be split for viewpoint, but Brandon usually waits to do that until he’s approaching a climax. Oh, well. Let’s check in with the former queen.
“In the past, my kind found it difficult to persuade spren to manifest themselves int he Physical Realm as devices. It seems Voidspren are not as naturally … self-sacrificing as those of Honor or Cultivation.”
Well, that’s a big info drop. Navani is appropriately awestruck, and sees the implications immediately. I love seeing smart characters, and this is shaping up to be an enthralling match of wits between Navani and Raboniel.
There’s a lot more information changing hands quickly than I expected. I thought there would be more stalling. I trust that both of them have already identified which secrets are most important to keep.
It’s a very different prospect to try to lie and keep secrets herself, as compared to leading a conclave of scholars to misdirect as a group, while under constant observation. Good luck, Navani.
I’m also looking forward to seeing Navani start to parse out the different rhythms. She’s going to need to quickly learn to read Raboniel’s moods, as a matter of self preservation, so she has the motivation.
Raboniel’s insistence on decorum feels like a compulsive act based on ingrained arrogance rather than a decision to keep her underlings in place. I wonder if that’s exploitable?
What is this vision of, and more importantly who is showing it to Kaladin? Vyre’s interlude indicated Odium was going to send a particular spren to manipulate him, while we also know the Sibling led Kaladin to this refuge in the tower.
Oh, you’ve just made an enemy, whoever you are that’s sending this vision. Showing Kal Tien’s death is not going to help you here.
And now they are showing him all of Bridge Four killing each other. Yes, this is his weak point, but really. It’s a bit too heavy handed if you don’t want him to rally and swear your utter destruction.
Oh, harsh. Waking up to have Syl far away is rough.
Radiant spren can’t pass through walls… it’s never been a problem in the past because they were always summonable. But now it might be possible to actually isolate Radiants from their spren in the tower.
Oh, and that’s really a very bad thing since Raboniel already told Navani that she’s looking for a way to capture nahel spren and prevent them from bonding any more Radiants. This could get messy.
And because the maps are not particularly helpful on their own until the story catches up, I’ll include the map of Emul in this entry:
My main comment is that it’s strange for Sesemalex Dar to abut against Odium’s controlled portion of Emul. I would have that Ishar kept a greater buffer zone between his main city and the occupying forces. Similarly, why is his army all the way over by the border with Marat? Shouldn’t it be closer to him? Unless he’s powerful enough on his own to not need an army (unlikely), or unless his other forces just aren’t annotated since they aren’t relevant for Dalinar’s campaign (much more believable).
I was going to comment on the proximity of Urithiru or Yeddaw to various other things, but then I look again at the scale of this thing which is very much continental in scope. It’s covering everything from the Southern Depths up to the Purelake, so things that are nearby on the map are not necessarily close to one another.
The names are interesting, but aside from some frequent double consonants (including four different qq names) there’s not much I can draw from them.
It’s also worth noting, though, that Urithiru’s location is only identified thanks to Nazh’s annotation. So this map is something that hasn’t been updated with recent knowledge by the native Rosharans.