Elena

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Elena last won the day on September 19 2017

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About Elena

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    beneath the stars came fallin' on our heads
  • Birthday February 1

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    Female
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    books, procrastinating, ritual sacrifices

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  1. Adolin has been shown to have many casual acquaintances and very few close friends. I think that's part of why Adolin was so friendly to Kaladin relatively early in their acquaintance, and I guess he's someone Adolin can turn to... for nearly anything except to talk about Shallan.
  2. This has been a very interesting discussion to backread, and definitely insightful. I never expected that we should interpret Shallan's personalities as a parallel to RL mental illness because, as @Aminar said upthread, whatever is going on with Shallan feels too controlled and artificial - I can buy it as the "fantasy version of DID" but not as an actual take on it. I think the fact that Shallan's powers are closely tied to her denial, repressed memories and by extension her powers is what makes her personalities to... fantastic to be a direct parallel to me, and I can't deny I would find it upsetting if it came out this was supposed to be the expression of an actual mental disorder when it serves the role of plot device in the story just as much as it serves that of character development if not more. I think of the thoughtful, sensitive portrayal of Kaladin's depression and its parallels to RL seasonal affective disorder, and the way it impacts his character arc in a way that adds to his character without sensationalising his struggles. Whatever is going on with Shallan is not that. I really hope there's going to be an actual payback to Shallan's arc beyond "yeah she has personalities and they all come out to play". Her OB arc dealing with her personalities made Shallan's chapters interesting but was (IMO) a disservice overall to Shallan as a character compared to WOR, and I'm ready for it to come to a resolution. I hope we'll reach a turning point soon.
  3. I was very happy to find this topic! I also believe this may be the set-up for a romance (Brandon is many thing but an innovative romance writer he's not, and he does seem to have a fondness for 'first girl wins' type of scenarios). I'm tentatively enthusiastic about it if it means more Laral in the story, I've wanted more of her since Way of Kings, and I've always had a soft spot because of how much grief she got for siding with the family of her guardian / betrothed under whose roof she lived over the childhood friend she hadn't seen in years that one time. I see things aren't changed, and now her crime is whining about the floor. Anyway, I really hope she has a bigger role going forward. Or if she isn't Kaladin's love interest, I hope whoever he ends up with is someone who doesn't automatically believe he's the greatest ever, as many around him seem to.
  4. I admit I'm not up to date with current interpretations of Shallan's personas or new WoBs on the subject, but I personally am always left uncomfortable when reading her chapters, because her whole personality situation makes me uneasy. I can't imagine living it! While it's a big step for Shallan to feel like she can be herself (all of herself!) around Adolin and not have to hide in that sense, I can also appreciate how gruelling that must be on Adolin. If he's ever spooked by the situation, who does he have to turn to? Who can he go to if he needs to vent a bit? It's not his secret to share. Adolin tries to be Shallan's support system and she accepts her as such in part and that's good for them, but Adolin has no support system of his own when it comes to this issue.
  5. I really love time skips in general, because they're a great way to look at characters we know and love in a different context, and I'm very happy RoW went in this direction They're also great to avoid plot dragging, especially when there's so much going on that explaining everything would take half a book by itself. This way you get to start the story after the big changes have already happened, and avoiding all the small minutiae like "yep, this and that happened" creating intrigue in the reader. And if there was anything really important it can be explored later on in flashbacks. As someone who loves epic fantasy series, I think many mid-series slumps could have been avoided through time skips as a way to cut on the too-many-too-dense plotlines that often come with big casts of characters and large scope of storytelling. WoT has shades of this for me, and I've been mourning the ASOIAF 5-years time skip since about 2005, so I'm overjoyed Stormlight went in this direction, and I've been happy about the planned 'break' mid-Stormlight since it was announced.
  6. Maybe this is a stupid question, but do we know for a fact that Jez was in fact Shalash's father, and it wasn't just an epithet/ honorific title she was using? He's described as the Father of the Heralds somewhere, so at first I didn't think much of Ash's words. But the more and more I've seen people convinced he's actually her biological father, so now I'm wondering if there's some WoB I missed?
  7. Yes I remember that, but the fact that immediately after coming to Sadeas's camp he took up cooking duties makes me think it's something he did for a while and not just a hobby. I can't shake off the idea that his third brother died before the other two; maybe it's just the fact that he misleads Kaladin into thinking only one of his brothers died and it influenced my thoughts too. Anyway, it sounded like he and the nuatoma were definitely close.
  8. I agree with most of this, but my own theory went: Kef'ha = nuatoma, a cousin. Rock said he was the nuatoma's cook - maybe the third brother died previously, and he became a third son. Then the nuatoma died, and so did Rock's two elder brothers. He may be nuatoma now, but I think there was some truth in his being a cook, and didn't immediately jump from fourth son to first. Being a cook feels lile a very practiced backstory, so I think it had some foundation and he didn't immediately come up with it in Sadeas's camp, and was indeed a cook for a while.
  9. It really would. I would love to see Shallan and Adolin go through mariage issues brought about by Adolin realising some things need to change and not by Shallan's issues. That could really do wonders to turn their relationship into something more mature, and also Adolin deserves some appreciation.
  10. So much this. Somewhere along the line fandom communities became too gebre savvy and started seeing tropes as inherently bad things. Tropes are the staples of literature; we use them for a reason. They can be badly done, but it's not being tropey that makes a storyline bad - tropes are the bones of the plot, and going out of one's way just to avoid them leaves a story with no structure. Because if one of them were a woman, they would be the most popular pairing and we wouldn't be having this discussion. They have the most amazing chemistry. Also, it's a beautiful, hammy word. That was a really well done analysis @Dreamstorm
  11. Back again, after going through the whole thread - it was very enjoyable; you guys did a great job analyzing stuff and laying things out. However, from now on I'm just going to dearly hope this entire arc is over and done with, not only because I think that's likely but mostly because the thought of taking any more of this is just... emotionally draining. You all make good points about how some things that were handled clumsily/lack of a payback might mean there could be more to come in the future, both to Shallan's evolution of her mental personas or her relationship with Adolin, but I'm hesitant to believe that's the case. I do agree with people who said that, since the clumsiness of the romance arc must have been picked up during beta, then it was likely intentional, but I don't believe it means there's more to come on this front. OB did have trend of supposedly important emotional scenes blowing over with no payback, so I guess this is... just something that's happening now? However, I also agree with all the people who said they were frustrated: this entire arc was ultimately pointless, as it served no purpose (all those pages of Shallan thinking about Kaladin could have been Lopen chapters!), and it mostly served to handle an issue that was created within this book (Shallan's split personas) and did so by, IMO, cheapening previous existing characer relationships (Kaladin is the 'bad boy choice' now?). Honestly, I feel a bit toyed with and definitely don't want any more of this arc. I'm all for analysing Shallan's mental state, but as soon as I even start to have thoughts about the state of her marriage I feel exhausted. No more. Also, big shotout for @Naerin for bringing up Laral; she's one of my favourites and it's always nice to see her getting some support
  12. Jumping straight into the thread without reading the discussion (will do later, though!) because over the last few days I've been rereading the book and the more I think about it the more I'm disappointed with how this particular plot went. Which is odd, because I on paper this plot does exactly what I was hoping for - I was relatively looking forward to the love triangle, as I enjoy any kind of Adolin/Shallan/Kaladin interaction in whatever shape or form; my guess was an arc that would be 'Shallan flirts with the idea of Kaladin, then eventually ends up with Adolin', and my hope was that none of the characters would be undermined by it. All of this happened, but it was still the most disappointing part of the whole book. It felt like a relatively subtle buildup (all the way to part 3) fell apart into an arc that was somewhat superficial - a way to strike off 'love triangle: check, done'; there was a lot of Shallan's personas having different tastes in men and very little actual character development. It also felt rushed; there was a lot of Triangle stuff in Part 4 and 5, to the point where it pretty much took over the individual characters arc. And for all of this relentless buildup, it completely fell apart in half a page that erased the whole thing as if it'd never happened. It made me feel frustrated not because I disliked the result, but because the result was brought about in such a way that seriously makes me wonder why it was even necessary at all, since pages and pages of supposed character development in a book that had precious little of it due to plot reasons were basically rendered moot. More than anything, the arc did Kaladin's character a big disservice, since he's the one who got absolutely zero advancement from it - plenty of his screen time was tied up in the romantic subplot, but it accomplished absolutely nothing. A single conversation with either Adolin or Shallan that might have brought forth some character development would've made a world of difference. At this point I'm actually curious about Sanderson's motivations, since on the one hand I am pretty sure this must have been brought up during beta reading, but I have also noticed that the entire book had a trend of supposed reveals being discarded along the way as Plot Reasons made them useless (the Helaran reveal, the Kholin boys not knowing what happened to their mother, Taln being spirited away by Amaram and so on). There were a lot of emotionals paybacks I was waiting for that never happened, so I'm wondering whether this was a writing choice made for Reasons (I heard the plot was condensed, since the book originally ended at Part 3) and the ~romance arc suffering was just the most obvious instance of it. tl;dr: When I first read the book I told myself I should be satisfied since on paper I'd gotten what I wanted and my initial ??? reaction was just due to bingereading, that maybe made it look like there was too much romance towards the end, or perhaps pacing issues. But the more I reread the more i'm wondering what even was the point of it. THAT SAID: The book had some wonderful, wonderful Adolin/Kaladin bonding moments. I am once again beyond sad this isn't that kind of romance arc.
  13. Definitely the Heralds - but Ash/Taln more than everyone; I really loved the glimpses we got of them as people, not just deities. I need them to interact both with each other and with Jasnah/everyone else. Adolin and Lift need to hang out asap Kaladin and the little prince. I have way too many feelings about that. Hopefully that will put him around Jasnah some more because their conversations were a delight to read.
  14. I had all those plans of reading slowly and making the book last, but alas. Agree with those who say it's Brandon's best book - it has a wonderful balance of plot, characters, mythology and character development. I found it incredibly emotionally rewarding; and i loved all the dynamics explored. If I had to pick a favourite arc it would be Kholinar, though reading about Elhokar was really rough - he's probably my favourite minor character and his death was pretty much the only thing I was praying wouldn't happen that ended up happening *cue shocked and sad reactions*. Kaladin really needs to look after that kid since the entire Kholin clan apparently just forgot. All in all I'm just really, really satisfied. And I can feel the withdrawal coming up already.
  15. I tend to agree morr with @IntentAwesome (not summoning, but maybe 'calling' the existing Highstorm) but have a welcome upvote! Your username rocks