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[OB] Adolin-Shallan-Kaladin Discussion

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6 hours ago, SLNC said:

If Adolin was that perceptive and knew all along , as you are suggesting. Why does he never think about it? Why does he never think that somethings wrong? We have so many PoVs of him and he never thinks, that there is anything wrong. Only after Shallan told him.

This has nothing to do with him being considerate or patient. Only if you pull it out of context.

It depends how you want to read it. I have a very different interpretation of what is happening during those scenes. My interpretation is Adolin does know of Shallan's masks, he does not know the details, but he knows there is something going on. This WoB below also confirms Adolin has learned to see through Shallan's various masks even if he isn't completely conscious of it. This passage I quoted was him directly asking the question. 

Hence, my personal interpretation is you are the one pulling it out of context by insisting Adolin has no idea of Shallan's inner issues and is completely blind to them. We have evidence this isn't true. Right here, he asks about who she becomes when he is not around. Later, he does reinforce preferring the "real" Shallan as opposed to the various masks/people she pretends she is. In the end, he recognize the "real" Shallan because, as the WoB highlights, he has come to know the difference in between Shallan being herself and Shallan playing a role.

I know you are going to argue Adolin learned those cues "after" Shallan told him, but I disagree. How the narrative was told strongly suggests he knew for a while just as Shallan knew Adolin is hiding something from her. He didn't press the issue, but neither did she.

And no, Adolin never reflects on it because he never gets a viewpoint where he had the ability to do so. Each one of his viewpoints involve him being into the core of the action, being focused on fighting, leading, taking over. He doesn't have many moments where he can ponder on his relationship with Shallan and when he does, he thinks of how Shallan may be preferring "better suited" Kaladin. The idea Adolin doesn't care because he never thinks it doesn't hold the road: he has no viewpoint. We don't know what Adolin thinks during those scenes, but we do know what he says and he bluntly asks Shallan "Who do you become?".

My interpretation this is Adolin knows. He's just willing to wait until she's ready to speak about it, just as he always did with Renarin. He waits.

 

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kari-no-sugata [PENDING REVIEW]

Shallan... in Oathbringer... she meets Adolin, and he's staring into her eyes. And she thinks that he can see that when she's Shallan again. So, my question is, is she correct? And if so, how did Adolin see that?

Brandon Sanderson [PENDING REVIEW]

So, it's not a magical thing. She shifts even when she's kind of being herself-- When she becomes different people, even if she's not completely Lightweaving herself, she shifts.

kari-no-sugata [PENDING REVIEW]

Is it visible?

Brandon Sanderson [PENDING REVIEW]

It is visible.

kari-no-sugata [PENDING REVIEW]

So he's looking very closely.

Brandon Sanderson [PENDING REVIEW]

And he wouldn't be able to point out that he had seen that. But it's intuitive, and he's learned to recognize that.

 

 

 

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38 minutes ago, maxal said:

This passage I quoted was him directly asking the question. 

38 minutes ago, maxal said:

Right here, he asks about who she becomes when he is not around.

Yes, right after Shallan told him, that she needs to steal some food for the cult. He was simply asking her, what she was doing out there. A completely valid question, considering he knows of her ability to alter her appearance, as in disgusing herself, through Lightweaving. Context is so important to interpret things.

It is obvious, that she is donning a disguise out there: "Who do you become?" is simply alluding to that.

38 minutes ago, maxal said:

Hence, my personal interpretation is you are the one pulling it out of context by insisting Adolin has no idea of Shallan's inner issues and is completely blind to them.

Right. I'm pulling it out of context, when you are not even providing the context, selectively quoting one sentence passages, that fit your narrative better.

38 minutes ago, maxal said:

I know you are going to argue Adolin learned those cues "after" Shallan told him, but I disagree. How the narrative was told strongly suggests he knew for a while just as Shallan knew Adolin is hiding something from her. He didn't press the issue, but neither did she.

And no, Adolin never reflects on it because he never gets a viewpoint where he had the ability to do so. Each one of his viewpoints involve him being into the core of the action, being focused on fighting, leading, taking over. He doesn't have many moments where he can ponder on his relationship with Shallan and when he does, he thinks of how Shallan may be preferring "better suited" Kaladin. The idea Adolin doesn't care because he never thinks it doesn't hold the road: he has no viewpoint. We don't know what Adolin thinks during those scenes, but we do know what he says and he bluntly asks Shallan "Who do you become?".

The narrative doesn't suggest that. It suggests the opposite.

We have multiple chapters (Crimson to Break and Deadeye) which are both Adolin chapters and are both huge on introspection. He even thinks about Shallan in these chapters, but never about any weird behavior or "visual cues" he's picked up. Instead he comments on her fetching outfit (Crimson to Break) and how her clothes don't really fit her (Deadeye). Enough space to put in a sentence about it in, but Adolin doesn't think about it.

So your statement, that Adolin has no introspective chapters is just plain wrong.

38 minutes ago, maxal said:

My interpretation this is Adolin knows. He's just willing to wait until she's ready to speak about it, just as he always did with Renarin. He waits.

Even if it were true, the bolded sentence makes absolutely no sense, because by asking her there, if it really is a question about her masks, shows that he doesn't wait. Shallan definitely wasn't ready to talk about it, considering her response was "Everyone."

Then later she tells him about Veil and Radiant. Great time to press the issue right? No, he rather spins the conversation to him killing Sadeas. If Adolin knew and was just waiting for her to be ready, why wouldn't he talk with her then? Simple, he doesn't know. He then knows about Veil and Radiant and then begins to look for signs until he can distinguish them by the end of Oathbringer.

So no. The narrative doesn't suggest he already knew. In fact, it highly contradicts it.

Edited by SLNC
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On 1/28/2018 at 10:51 AM, SLNC said:

Right. I'm pulling it out of context, when you are not even providing the context, selectively quoting one sentence passages, that fit your narrative better.

Even if I were to provide a hundred pages essay completed with quotes and WoB to support my interpretation it would still be tossed into the garbage can. Nobody which interacts within this thread is willing nor has the intention to try to challenge their notion wanting Adolin/Shallan to be something negative, toxic and doomed to fail. As for myself, I am certainly not willing to endorse the opposite argument either because I do believe most of its arguments contradict the narrative at hand, so I guess it runs both ways. Hence, this conversation is pointless. There is no purpose into continuing it.

At this point in time I will just give up trying to argument: it is not worth it. To be honest, I only posted because I felt the idea "Shallan does not love Adolin" was really a tad far-fetched considering she downright says she does, but this thread's millage vary in ways which aren't complementary to my personal interpretation of the narrative. 

No hard feelings or anything, this isn't meant to be read in an aggressive nor condescending nor any ways which is unpleasant. I am merely stating I do not wish to continue the conversation because I do not feel it is productive.

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1 hour ago, maxal said:

Nobody which interacts within this thread is willing nor has the intention to try to challenge their notion wanting Adolin/Shallan to be something negative, toxic and doomed to fail.

This is an extreme view and you are lumping everyone together which is ridiculous. I can only speak for myself. I think Adolin/Shallan are not in a good place right now. I think it is possible for them to get to a good place. Hopefully, the next book will have their relationship reaching greater depth. If they stay where they are, I will probably dislike their relationship. Adolin/Shallan had plenty of cute moments, but I thought they were mostly superficial.

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7 minutes ago, wotbibliophile said:

This is an extreme view and you are lumping everyone together which is ridiculous. I can only speak for myself. I think Adolin/Shallan are not in a good place right now. I think it is possible for them to get to a good place. Hopefully, the next book will have their relationship reaching greater depth. If they stay where they are, I will probably dislike their relationship. Adolin/Shallan had plenty of cute moments, but I thought they were mostly superficial.

 

I pretty much agree with your take. When I got to the end of this plot line I was shocked at how rushed it felt, and how poorly justified the supposed happy ending seemed by what had come before. It left me with a really off feeling and a sense that the triangle had been poorly written. This thread gave me tons to think about in hopes that there may be something deeper to come. If it doesn’t take a significant turn, I will probably continue to feel the same. If Shadolin are endgame, there is still some chance I will soften my opinion as I generally enjoy both characters separately. It’s hard to imagine they will ever be my favorite couple, but that could be okay if some of the major issues discussed here are actually addressed in the next book.

 

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1 hour ago, maxal said:

At this point in time I will just give up trying to argument: it is not worth it. To be honest, I only posted because I felt the idea "Shallan does not love Adolin" was really a tad far-fetched considering she downright says she does, but this thread's millage vary in ways which aren't complementary to my personal interpretation of the narrative. 

 

I think we may have pretty different overall impressions of this plot line, but I did want to comment on the point you brought up about Shallan loving Adolin. You are right, she absolutely does say it and in no uncertain terms at the end, so that shouldn’t be completely dismissed. That was part of what I found jarring actually, because at the time I remember thinking it seemed like a major leap from what she had thought about Adolin up to that point (plenty of thoughts about attraction but love I don’t remember). I’m still rereading though so maybe my impression will be different the second time. And if we look at WoB, it seems the intention was to show her in love with both Adolin and Kaladin (love seems a bit too strong to describe her feelings for either to me personally, but that could just be semantics).

Anyway, I don’t want to repeat myself, but my biggest issues were with how Shallan’s mental state played into this throughout and especially at the conclusion, so that is what I really want to see addressed.

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I think it is a rushed plot to have them marry right now, but not necessarily unrealistic, and it felt like a good moment to make a decision like that in terms of just how the decision was executed, on part of writing. When Adolin x Shallan continues down the line it will need more work and attention though, to avoid a complete flattening of an interesting plot in my opinion. If it will be treated like a normal marriage in Book 4 I would be disappointed - I'd expect there to be a lot of difficulties at first, especially from Adolin's POV, adapting to a life like that. I'd be disappointed if Adolin just took it all in stride or with minimal effort and never struggled again. I guess for me it's that I want to care about Adolin and Shallan as a pairing, but I only have a lukewarm opinion of it because they never struggled for that relationship, and the hardships they did face were superficial and hardly any of their relationship was explored beyond the "you complete me" and "he gets me / she's so different and wonderful" tropes. At least with Shalladin I felt as if they had clicked on a deeper level, but maybe that's just because the chasm sequence was miles better than any single Shadolin scene I've ever read. 

Edited by Vissy
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1 hour ago, wotbibliophile said:

This is an extreme view and you are lumping everyone together which is ridiculous.

As I said, I did not mean for my post to be aggressive, but I was unsure how it would be interpreted, hence the warning. I do not lump everyone together, I phrased my post in a given way in order to avoid appearing to single out anyone as it wasn't my intention either. I did not mean for others to believe I thought each poster was inter-changeable. 

This being said forces are to admit this particular thread has mostly argued on one side: opposing opinions have been sparse and have usually been met with strong opposition. I did not feel like embarking into a long debate on the matter, none of the arguments currently being used are going to make me change my interpretation and none of mine are likely to change anyone engaged within this debate's opinion, hence I thought it was best to exit the conversation. I could have just ignored it, but I thought it was rude.

This being said, I do not personally find the romance was well-explored nor satisfying and I do agree it could/should have been better fleshed out. 

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14 hours ago, BraidedRose said:

When I got to the end of this plot line I was shocked at how rushed it felt, and how poorly justified the supposed happy ending seemed by what had come before. It left me with a really off feeling and a sense that the triangle had been poorly written.

This was exactly my feelings as well.  I actually liked the Shadolin romance a lot in WoR and in the preview chapters.  It just... wasn't sold well in OB.  (Neither was Shalladin; I would have just been as disappointed about that being the end of OB as well!)  I really don't get how saying you aren't satisfied with Shadolin means you don't like Adolin.  In fact I see it as exactly the opposite (see below.)  I don't understand how a huge fan of Adolin can be a huge fan of Shadolin!

13 hours ago, maxal said:

This being said forces are to admit this particular thread has mostly argued on one side: opposing opinions have been sparse and have usually been met with strong opposition.

I think the major disconnect is that the majority of this thread is about piecing together the evidence to try and discern where Brandon is headed with the romantic arc.  A lot of the evidence other than the obvious "Shallan married Adolin" (accompanied by "Brandon will never break up a marriage") seems to point away from this being the ending of the arc.  That's not to contradict poster's subjective feelings on the arc.  There are a lot of ways one can subjectively be happy with the ending of OB which have been expressed here: some posters hate the braided rose trope and/or love the flirtatious prince changes his ways for the right girl trope; some posters think since Kaladin has depression he shouldn't be in a relationship; some posters just hate romance and want whatever outcome will lead to less of it in the books; some posters do not care about Kaladin's part of the arc and found satisfaction in how the Shallan/Adolin relationship on its own was constructed.  But in the end, most of those are reader's personal opinions, which are totally fine, but also open to opposition that the arc is not objectively over (i.e. Brandon isn't pointing to this being the end.)  So that's why you're seeing a lot on one side.

13 hours ago, maxal said:

This being said, I do not personally find the romance was well-explored nor satisfying and I do agree it could/should have been better fleshed out. 

So going back to the above since you expressing how you weren't satisfied with the romance made me think of it... I am confused why a reader who loves Adolin is happy with Shadolin.  (Not particular to you Maxal, but just in general for the fact we seem to always see "Adolin lover" = "Shadolin lover".)  Taking aside some of the debatable aspects of Shadolin, we know two things to be true: (1) Brandon has said parts of Shallan are in love with Adolin and parts are in love with Kaladin and (2) Brandon did not write strong feelings for Shallan into Adolin's PoV.  I do not see how a reader who is in love with Adolin can be happy with a romance for Adolin with these two elements!  Adolin married a woman who we know (because the author told us) loves another man as well as Adolin, and the author chose not to show Adolin having any strong feelings for his now wife (either by design or just through omission.)  Wouldn't a lover of Adolin want him in a relationship with a woman where the woman only loved Adolin and all parts of her wanted to marry Adolin?  Wouldn't a lover of Adolin want to see from Adolin's PoV his love for that woman?  I just don't see how an Adolin lover can be satisfied with what we got and want that romance to be the end all and be all of Adolin's romance!  Doesn't he deserve better?

I can see a couple (maybe subconscious) motivations though.  One, Adolin being married to one of our three main characters keeps him as a central character, so this tepid romance is OK as a compromise for keeping Adolin in the forefront of the story.  Two, the love of Adolin means a desire for Adolin to "win" in all situations, and marrying Shallan is considered a "win" over Kaladin (I see this also come into the idea that Adolin had zero other options for women to court/marry, and thus it must be Shallan.  So Adolin "needs" this "win".)  Three, the reader identifies with Shallan, and thus can insert her/himself in the relationship and imagine her/himself as the one in the relationship with Adolin.  Four, the reader recognizes the Shadolin relationship doesn't have much depth and likes the idea of Adolin not being that attached to his romantic partner, because then the reader can keep up the fantasy that he/she is the one who is right for Adolin.  (I realize these get a bit more crazy as they go along :D)  But in conclusion, I don't get why loving Adolin equates to loving Shadolin!  (And vice versa that disliking Shadolin means disliking Adolin!)  It just doesn't add up.  Would you want to be married to someone who also loves someone else?  Or married to someone who you don't feel strong feelings for (or where the author who created you doesn't feel the need to show these feelings)?  Absolutely not on my end!  (Currently auditioning for president of the newest SA fan club:  Adolin fans who believe he deserves better than his romance with Shallan :P)

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So going back to the above since you expressing how you weren't satisfied with the romance made me think of it... I am confused why a reader who loves Adolin is happy with Shadolin.  (Not particular to you Maxal, but just in general for the fact we seem to always see "Adolin lover" = "Shadolin lover".)  Taking aside some of the debatable aspects of Shadolin, we know two things to be true: (1) Brandon has said parts of Shallan are in love with Adolin and parts are in love with Kaladin and (2) Brandon did not write strong feelings for Shallan into Adolin's PoV.  I do not see how a reader who is in love with Adolin can be happy with a romance for Adolin with these two elements!  Adolin married a woman who we know (because the author told us) loves another man as well as Adolin, and the author chose not to show Adolin having any strong feelings for his now wife (either by design or just through omission.)  Wouldn't a lover of Adolin want him in a relationship with a woman where the woman only loved Adolin and all parts of her wanted to marry Adolin?  Wouldn't a lover of Adolin want to see from Adolin's PoV his love for that woman?  I just don't see how an Adolin lover can be satisfied with what we got and want that romance to be the end all and be all of Adolin's romance!  Doesn't he deserve better?

Maxal just said that she's not exactly happy with how Shadolin turned out in OB, but she prefers it for Shalladin nevertheless, that is how I read it anyway. It'd help the discussion here to get on to new (and more interesting) avenues if we didn't always get stuck on the preference for Shadolin vs. Shalladin. 

Edited by Vissy
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19 hours ago, Vissy said:

At least with Shalladin I felt as if they had clicked on a deeper level, but maybe that's just because the chasm sequence was miles better than any single Shadolin scene I've ever read.

Yeah, this has really tripped me up in liking the Shallan - Adolin interaction (intentionally separated). The chasm sequence was just so good, I was like, "more please, " and never really got it in Oathbringer at all from any of the relationships (intentionally not shortened). The frustrating part is that Adolin and Shallan are such great characters on their own in OB, but put them together and the story does flatten out, IMO.

I guess I'm going to give Brandon the benefit of the doubt that there was an intentional reason for not having a substantial scene with just Shallan and Kaladin, like the aforementioned Chasm Sequence, aside from some brief conversations in the Shadesmar section. I always thought it odd that the original trip by Kaladin and Shallan to open the Oathgate in Theylan City was entirely offscreen. If Brandon wanted to have that Kaladin-Shallan scene that could have been the place. Again, I think this was all intentional on Brandon's part and it's RAFO.

1 hour ago, Vissy said:

It'd help the discussion here to get on to new (and more interesting) avenues if we didn't always get stuck on the preference for Shadolin vs. Shalladin.

I am feeling pretty nervous jumping in on page 87. Be nice to me.

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4 hours ago, Dreamstorm said:

I think the major disconnect is that the majority of this thread is about piecing together the evidence to try and discern where Brandon is headed with the romantic arc.  A lot of the evidence other than the obvious "Shallan married Adolin" (accompanied by "Brandon will never break up a marriage") seems to point away from this being the ending of the arc.  That's not to contradict poster's subjective feelings on the arc.  There are a lot of ways one can subjectively be happy with the ending of OB which have been expressed here: some posters hate the braided rose trope and/or love the flirtatious prince changes his ways for the right girl trope; some posters think since Kaladin has depression he shouldn't be in a relationship; some posters just hate romance and want whatever outcome will lead to less of it in the books; some posters do not care about Kaladin's part of the arc and found satisfaction in how the Shallan/Adolin relationship on its own was constructed.  But in the end, most of those are reader's personal opinions, which are totally fine, but also open to opposition that the arc is not objectively over (i.e. Brandon isn't pointing to this being the end.)  So that's why you're seeing a lot on one side.

Excellent post on the summation of the various attitudes in the thread, and the inherent problem as to why it can feel so overwhelmingly one sided with regards to the discussion.  Excellent work, and upvote.

Ultimately, people who were satisfied with the "end" of the romantic arc have very little reason to come here, and that is why I appreciate those that did and expressed so (though I personally may find it difficult to understand their reasoning behind interpretations).  People who are happy with Shadolin, have no reason to look into why the "closing" of the Shalladin aspects were so mishandled.  They have no reason to try to understand why Shalladin even existed in the first place.  If your team won the game, why would you care about going back and evaluating that bad call by the ref, or evaluate whether some rule had been violated, or if there was cheating, or whatever.  So I get it. 

And honestly, I don't really see much more new discussion to be had on the "is Shalladin over" front until some drastically new piece of information from the author is dropped, hence why you haven't seen much participation from me in active theorizing in a while.  

Also, I think it is better for me to just forget about OB and the SA for a while.  It's really weird.  nearly 3 months after release, and I still have not done a full reread of this book.  I haven't done a full reread of a book within the book, or even fully reread any particular chapters.  I've only pulled open certain sections to make quotes for this thread, and not much else.  By this time after WoR, I must have read that thing cover to cover 4 times.  Couldn't get enough.  That desire just isn't there this time.  Not only that, I can't even bring myself to try and go back and reread WoR, which was my favorite of the three.  I had no idea I was so hung up on Shalladin like that.  That has never happened to me over a book series before, and I read A LOT across multiple genres.  It's so weird that I'm embarrassed to even admit it out loud, but...there it is, gotta at least be honest with myself.  My wife thinks its adorable, but I think it's torturous.  It's torturous that such a stupidly small plot element of this narrative has potentially turned me off of these books for a while.

Anyway, like @maxal has said many times before, Brandon is not responsible for my interpretation and reactions to his writing.  He doesn't owe me anything in regards to my expectations. So I'll either get it figured out by book 4, or find something else to read.  Everyone keep up the good discussion tho, and posting any new information as you get it.  Always a pleasure to read an untapped theory or thought.

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6 hours ago, Dreamstorm said:

This was exactly my feelings as well.  I actually liked the Shadolin romance a lot in WoR and in the preview chapters.  It just... wasn't sold well in OB.  (Neither was Shalladin; I would have just been as disappointed about that being the end of OB as well!)  I really don't get how saying you aren't satisfied with Shadolin means you don't like Adolin.  In fact I see it as exactly the opposite (see below.)  I don't understand how a huge fan of Adolin can be a huge fan of Shadolin!

 

I agree totally that Adolin deserves better! I would actually say all three deserve better, but especially Adolin. He may not be my absolute favorite character because I think he is under developed but it is hard to understand why some hardcore Adolin fans are fully satisfied with this (though I know some are not).  

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2 hours ago, Brightlord Brooding Eyes said:

Yeah, this has really tripped me up in liking the Shallan - Adolin interaction (intentionally separated). The chasm sequence was just so good, I was like, "more please, " and never really got it in Oathbringer at all from any of the relationships (intentionally not shortened). The frustrating part is that Adolin and Shallan are such great characters on their own in OB, but put them together and the story does flatten out, IMO.

I guess I'm going to give Brandon the benefit of the doubt that there was an intentional reason for not having a substantial scene with just Shallan and Kaladin, like the aforementioned Chasm Sequence, aside from some brief conversations in the Shadesmar section. I always thought it odd that the original trip by Kaladin and Shallan to open the Oathgate in Theylan City was entirely offscreen. If Brandon wanted to have that Kaladin-Shallan scene that could have been the place. Again, I think this was all intentional on Brandon's part and it's RAFO.

I am feeling pretty nervous jumping in on page 87. Be nice to me.

 

I agree with all of the points you make. I mentioned something similar about not showing the Thaylen city trip being deliberate a page or two back. Thanks for jumping in on page 87. I joined around page 60 something. There's been a surprising amount of interesting discussion all along, but as you might imagine after 87 pages lots of repetition too so I think new perspectives are appreciated. 

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1 hour ago, DeployParachute said:

Also, I think it is better for me to just forget about OB and the SA for a while.  It's really weird.  nearly 3 months after release, and I still have not done a full reread of this book.  I haven't done a full reread of a book within the book, or even fully reread any particular chapters.  I've only pulled open certain sections to make quotes for this thread, and not much else.  By this time after WoR, I must have read that thing cover to cover 4 times.  Couldn't get enough.  That desire just isn't there this time.  Not only that, I can't even bring myself to try and go back and reread WoR, which was my favorite of the three.  I had no idea I was so hung up on Shalladin like that.  That has never happened to me over a book series before, and I read A LOT across multiple genres.  It's so weird that I'm embarrassed to even admit it out loud, but...there it is, gotta at least be honest with myself.  My wife thinks its adorable, but I think it's torturous.  It's torturous that such a stupidly small plot element of this narrative has potentially turned me off of these books for a while.

 

I feel very similarly. I'm surprised how much my dissatisfaction with this plot line has affected my overall view of OB, and that it is the element I have given the most thought to since finishing. I have started a re-read and I'm hoping I'll have a somewhat different impression of it the second time around and also to be able to focus more on some other aspects as well. 

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I am with you @DeployParachute. I am not interested in rereading OB. That is because I found it to be very depressing. The end of Part 3 stuck with me for the rest of the book. There was nothing really satisfying for me to make up for all the sadness.

 

I was wondering what people think of Shallan's line "She has bad taste in men." Shallan is talking to Adolin about Veil liking Kaladin. I was offended by this line and was wondering why Shallan thinks this. I thought it might have to do with Helaran in which case I am not offended. It is hard to think of Kaladin as a good guy when he killed your brother. This makes sense to me. But Helaran is not explicitly tied to this line since Shallan has so completely repressed her reaction. Is there some other reason Kaladin = bad for Shallan? Is it in the text? If it is for any reason other than Helaran I am offended because Kaladin is a catch.

I thought of one other reason that Shallan may have said that line. Maybe she said it to manipulate Adolin. She was like "Don't worry Adolin, I'm not interested in Kaladin. Everyone knows he would make a bad partner. I'm only interested in you." :blink:

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28 minutes ago, wotbibliophile said:

I am with you @DeployParachute. I am not interested in rereading OB. That is because I found it to be very depressing. The end of Part 3 stuck with me for the rest of the book. There was nothing really satisfying for me to make up for all the sadness.

 

I was wondering what people think of Shallan's line "She has bad taste in men." Shallan is talking to Adolin about Veil liking Kaladin. I was offended by this line and was wondering why Shallan thinks this. I thought it might have to do with Helaran in which case I am not offended. It is hard to think of Kaladin as a good guy when he killed your brother. This makes sense to me. But Helaran is not explicitly tied to this line since Shallan has so completely repressed her reaction. Is there some other reason Kaladin = bad for Shallan? Is it in the text? If it is for any reason other than Helaran I am offended because Kaladin is a catch.

I thought of one other reason that Shallan may have said that line. Maybe she said it to manipulate Adolin. She was like "Don't worry Adolin, I'm not interested in Kaladin. Everyone knows he would make a bad partner. I'm only interested in you." :blink:

That's pretty much where I am even though I think it was more about further manipulating herself than Adolin. "Yeah, Veil is stupid. Absolutely nothing to do with me tho! Nothing at all." The line is harsh because she is overcompensating.

Edited by analyticaposteriori
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8 hours ago, wotbibliophile said:

I was wondering what people think of Shallan's line "She has bad taste in men." Shallan is talking to Adolin about Veil liking Kaladin. I was offended by this line and was wondering why Shallan thinks this. I thought it might have to do with Helaran in which case I am not offended. It is hard to think of Kaladin as a good guy when he killed your brother. This makes sense to me. But Helaran is not explicitly tied to this line since Shallan has so completely repressed her reaction. Is there some other reason Kaladin = bad for Shallan? Is it in the text? If it is for any reason other than Helaran I am offended because Kaladin is a catch.

I thought of one other reason that Shallan may have said that line. Maybe she said it to manipulate Adolin. She was like "Don't worry Adolin, I'm not interested in Kaladin. Everyone knows he would make a bad partner. I'm only interested in you." :blink:

 

Another really great point! We can’t really be expected to believe that Kaladin is “bad taste.” The worst that can be said of him is that he has a prejudice that he is actively working on overcoming. Yes, he suffers from depression, but it would be offensive to consider him “bad taste” for that reason. One could say he is not ready for a relationship if he wasn’t dealing with it, though currently he is, and by that measure obviously Shallan herself would not be ready, probably more so. But that is different from “bad.” Honestly what else could you really say that wouldn’t be twisting a positive into a negative or misunderstanding who Kaladin is?

So could Shallan herself honestly misunderstand him so much that she actually thinks he is bad for all partners (not even just bad for her)? It doesn’t seem like it from her internal monologue about his qualities. The one possible alternative explanation I can think of is that the Shallan who says this is a mask that has separated from the parts of her that do understand Kaladin, so at that moment with a mistaken impression she does believe this. Or it’s like you said and this line is disingenuous. Or I suppose very lazy writing, but I doubt that.

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59 minutes ago, BraidedRose said:

So could Shallan herself honestly misunderstand him so much that she actually thinks he is bad for all partners (not even just bad for her)? It doesn’t seem like it from her internal monologue about his qualities. The one possible alternative explanation I can think of is that the Shallan who says this is a mask that has separated from the parts of her that do understand Kaladin, so at that moment with a mistaken impression she does believe this. Or it’s like you said and this line is disingenuous. Or I suppose very lazy writing, but I doubt that.

I think, that she's perceiving her feelings for Kaladin as another shortcoming, that she is shoving onto Veil. Problem is, that Shallan loses her grip on reality (and I'm arguing, that she still hasn't got it back, because she still has her masks and we have confirmation, that they still will come and go as they please, just not as often) and Veil becomes a new person with her own goals in Shallan's head. The feelings for Kaladin were used by Brandon as a convenient plot device to show that. That doesn't change, that the original source of those feelings was Shallan herself, hell, I'd argue they were even stronger, than what she felt for Adolin back then. Now, Shallan, that sees herself as full of flaws, of course, only has eyes for Adolin, since her feelings for Kaladin are just another "flaw" to her, but we also know, that Brandon heavily implied, that those flaws are only perceived by her. If she does lay down her masks in Book 4, she'll probably see that and have to deal with those feelings.

Saying Veil has a bad taste in men, because she likes Kaladin is just a convenient excuse for her to tell Adolin. And probably to convince herself.

Edited by SLNC
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4 hours ago, SLNC said:

Saying Veil has a bad taste in men, because she likes Kaladin is just a convenient excuse for her to tell Adolin. And probably to convince herself.

Suppose in Book 4 Shallan Lightweaves into Veil, puts on her white pantsuit and hat and starts hitting on Kaladin. Cool, not cool? I mean, it's Shallan that's married to Adolin, not Veil. It doesn't matter that Shallan thinks Veil has bad taste in men; Veil thinks she has great taste in men and should have the freedom to flirt with the Bad Boys. #slipperyslope

Edited by Brightlord Brooding Eyes
fixed a couple of typos
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5 hours ago, SLNC said:

I think, that she's perceiving her feelings for Kaladin as another shortcoming, that she is shoving onto Veil. Problem is, that Shallan loses her grip on reality (and I'm arguing, that she still hasn't got it back, because she still has her masks and we have confirmation, that they still will come and go as they please, just not as often) and Veil becomes a new person with her own goals in Shallan's head. The feelings for Kaladin were used by Brandon as a convenient plot device to show that. That doesn't change, that the original source of those feelings was Shallan herself, hell, I'd argue they were even stronger, than what she felt for Adolin back then. Now, Shallan, that sees herself as full of flaws, of course, only has eyes for Adolin, since her feelings for Kaladin are just another "flaw" to her, but we also know, that Brandon heavily implied, that those flaws are only perceived by her. If she does lay down her masks in Book 4, she'll probably see that and have to deal with those feelings.

Saying Veil has a bad taste in men, because she likes Kaladin is just a convenient excuse for her to tell Adolin. And probably to convince herself.

 

Let me try to paraphrase and perhaps add a little to what you said here, because you helped me think about this in a slightly different way and I think it might fit best with what we know of Shallan. 

Shallan sees herself as full of flaws and she is pushing those parts of herself (or perhaps at least the things she thinks Adolin will see as flaws) into Veil. She feels guilty about her feelings for Kaladin. Perhaps made worse by Jasnah's chiding her for wandering eyes and her belief that it would hurt Adolin. So she starts to think that her feelings for Kaladin are a result of these flaws or that the feelings themselves are a flaw. All of that gets dumped on Veil as well. But then she sort of twists that around to make Kaladin the one who is flawed. Essentially she may be lying to herself more so than lying to Adolin when she gives this excuse, which I think is Shallan's biggest problem at the moment. 

By the way, at times trying to make myself work through Shallan's potential thought process makes my brain hurt!

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5 hours ago, Brightlord Brooding Eyes said:

Suppose in Book 4 Shallan Lightweaves into Veil, puts on her white pantsuit and hat and starts hitting on Kaladin. Cool, not cool? I mean, it's Shallan that's married to Adolin, not Veil. It doesn't matter that Shallan thinks Veil has bad taste in men; Veil thinks she has great taste in men and should have the freedom to flirt with the Bad Boys. #slipperyslope

It's a sort of scenario that came to my mind immediately after reading some part of the sample chapters.

After OB came out I discarded it... until someone spotted that Kaladin had never actually seen Veil. It's not like there were no occasions. Even when Shallan was Veil around him, she specifically never looked like her. It's so convenient and also rather against probability, that it screams intentional to me.

Although the implications can get a bit... too cringy.

Edited by Ailvara
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I think we're all going to go mad with the question of whether or not Kaladin ever saw Veil, and whether or not Shallan is Shallan+Veil+Radiant in equal measures or just Shallan, that we need to ask some of these question from Brandon in book signings... does anyone here have book signings coming up nearby? Maybe willing to take questions? We should start a list of questions that need answers and just tick them off one by one as the signings go by!

EDIT: let me list a few of my own questions below:

- Tyn warned Shallan about prolonging her cons in WoR, will this come relevant later on in the story?

- A lot of people loved the end of OB, and some felt it was a bit rushed in some aspects. Did you intend for the marriage between Shallan and Adolin to seem rushed? 

- Shallan often talks about putting on a mask for Adolin. Is she still doing this, even unwittingly? 

- OB mostly focused on the relationship between Shallan and Adolin, and you chose to omit any Kaladin/Shallan scenes. Was this simply due to lack of space?

- (A bit of a specific question) Shallan was wearing sapphire blue in the wedding, not Kholin blue or something else. Why sapphire blue specifically? Why a color that is associated with Windrunners? Did Veil choose her attire that day perhaps? ;)

Edited by Vissy
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19 hours ago, DeployParachute said:

Also, I think it is better for me to just forget about OB and the SA for a while.  It's really weird.  nearly 3 months after release, and I still have not done a full reread of this book.  I haven't done a full reread of a book within the book, or even fully reread any particular chapters.  I've only pulled open certain sections to make quotes for this thread, and not much else.

I've had the same thing. I kept telling myself I was going to start my reread any day, but it never came. I've read White Sand and all four Pierce Brown/Red Rising books in the interim, but have been avoiding what I thought would be a no-brainer reread. It actually makes me feel better to know other people are similar. We'll get to that reread eventually.

45 minutes ago, Vissy said:

we need to ask some of these question from Brandon in book signings... does anyone here have book signings coming up nearby? Maybe willing to take questions?

I'm going to ECCC in a month, and I've been thinking of what I want answered. It's either Nightblood's chain of custody or....something....out of this thread. Thanks for the list, I'll keep them in mind.

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1 hour ago, Vissy said:

We should start a list of questions that need answers and just tick them off one by one as the signings go by!

Since we're doing this, may I add two of my own? I'm not saying that they're good questions or that they'd merit an answer or that they have to be to be asked. Here they are:

- Is divorce possible within Vorinism?

- When Shallan said that Veil has bad taste in men, was there a deeper purpose behind that undeserved and unfair disparagement of Kaladin's character?

Edited by DimChatz
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So several people think Shallan was less than honest. I'm glad I'm not the only one.

4 hours ago, BraidedRose said:

Essentially she may be lying to herself more so than lying to Adolin when she gives this excuse, which I think is Shallan's biggest problem at the moment. 

By the way, at times trying to make myself work through Shallan's potential thought process makes my brain hurt!

 

I wasn't thinking of Shallan manipulating or lying to herself. I think because I was trying to take the conversation at face value, which is really hard. It makes a lot of sense that Shallan is lying to herself and believing her lies. I have been thinking that for a long time.

 

Shallan's pov or arc is very ambiguous. I do not like it. Kaladin and Dalinar have very little ambiguity and their arcs develop in a way where you see and understand every step they take. Shallan's arc is confusing.

 

I had forgotten that it was Radiant who told Jasnah that she wanted to be her ward. I think because I had been assuming Shallan=Veil=Radiant so it didn't matter that it was Radiant it was still something Shallan wanted. Now I am wondering if I should be treating Radiant as a separate being. Of course Radiant would want to be Jasnah's ward she is the most scholarly of the three and the most (superficially) like Jasnah. What does Shallan want? Does she want to be Jasnah's ward? I can't tell! damnation this ambiguity!

 

ETA: hey, I didn't write damnation. I wrote - ation. :)

Edited again: It is weird how underdeveloped Radiant is. Did she have scenes in OB that were later cut? At the end she is made equal to Veil and Shallan. Veil and Shallan had a lot of development and many POVs. Radiant had half of one pov and from then on we only heard about what she was up to or interested in. It is hard to see Radiant as important even though Shallan apparently relies on her (as much as she relies on Veil). It is really frustrating to get from Radiant that Shallan had been debating for months between Kaladin and Adolin and then to have Radiant prefer Kaladin over Adolin. We did not see this debate taking place. I would have loved to know there was a debate and what that debate consisted of. At one point, Radiant preferred Adolin when did the switch happen?

Edited by wotbibliophile
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