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maxal last won the day on January 1 2018

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About maxal

  • Birthday February 12

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  1. As a reader who not only loves Adolin, but is passionate about his character, I have a very different perspective on what is happening. I feel I am not allowed to love the character as much as I do because each time I voice out my thoughts, they are met with strong opposition which always leads to the animosity others are saying prevents them from even posting their thoughts. I feel I am not allowed to state I personally believe the narrative of Oathbringer would have been only stronger, not weaker, had the author given slightly more viewpoints to Adolin in order to make his character more cohesive, in order to allow, even those who have trouble with his character, to understand him better. I feel I am not allowed to state I personally find the character hasn't been given enough given his position within the narrative, I am not allowed to state I find him more important than the minor role others are insisting he barely fulfills. I feel I am not allowed to defend the character I love so much, to state how important I find his contribution to the main narrative is. I am especially not allowed to draw parallel in between other characters the fandom has acknowledged were "important", without having important narrative, to reinforce my point because this too is a cause of friction. I feel I am not allowed to wish the author would expand on Adolin's role within future books, I am not allowed to state I personally believe the narrative would benefit from it as I am not allowed to voice out the idea not given Adolin enough page time is actually harming the character more than it is helping him. I feel I am not allowed to discuss future story arcs for the character which are positive, growing as opposed to negative and shrinking. I feel the only future the 17th Shard has allowed forms a valid form a discussion is the one where Adolin: 1) dies, 2) falls into complete insignificance, 3) becomes Odium's Champion as any endeavor to discuss an expanding narrative leading to an actual character growth are met with so much adversity, it ends up turning sour. In other words, I feel I am not allowed to be an Adolin's fans within the 17th Shard and if I can no longer discuss the narrative aspects I personally find interesting without ending being the one who causes the mods to step in or the discussion to turn ugly, then I have no business being here anymore. Thank you for listening and I am sorry for having created a climate which other Sharders feels is improper to discuss the narrative. It has never been my intentions, but forces are to admit the wind has turned. It is no longer welcome to support, speak and wish for Adolin to grow into this narrative. I have no desire to keep on stirring the pot: I am leaving you all the space you want.
  2. If it does happen, if the questioning does happen, then I will be utterly satisfied. SA will span over decades; Adolin remaining static for the whole time is not very realistic. People always end up asking questions, sometimes it takes more time, but it usually ends up happening. The only interest in a static character, IMHO, is when and how he will unhinged. Hence, if Brandon ends up writing it, then it will be a great moment, perhaps not for all readers, but it quite possibly will be a moment many readers will enjoy reading. But it is too late for this... Side-storying characters, this is exactly what Brandon did with Bridge 4 and Moash and Lift. This is exactly what he does with the interludes: there is a lot of side-storying of side-characters in SA already. I however never considered Adolin was one of those characters: I always read him as important enough to have earned his narrative. Think about how minor Mat was in the first WoT book or Elayne or Min: they all ended up growing into the story and they all earned their own narratives. Would WoT have the same impact had it been about just Rand? Even Nynaeve, arguably one of the best characters in the books, started up rather minor, one step below Rand/Egwene. Personally I loved WoT, I loved how the story allowed so many characters to have their narrative: it was amazing. Sure, perhaps two or three could have been removed or shortened, some could have been wrapped up better, but in the end I was very satisfied with my journey. This series was truly great. I have nothing but positive comments for it.
  3. I personally do not buy the argument Adolin is acting in a selfish manner when he offers to step down in favor of Kaladin. Adolin's entire arc in Oathbringer was about him feeling unworthy of his father, of Radiants, of basically everyone, including Shallan. So while he does acknowledged having a talent for dueling, he promptly dismissed as useless as the world needs generals and not silly duelists. He never acknowledges he is good at leading men, he just naturally believes himself the inferior man next to... anyone else willing to take the job. Shallan did leer at Kaladin in Kholinar which Adolin caught on. He did see her drawings of him. He saw them bath in the same light in Shadesmar: he added one and one together and drew out the conclusion, albeit wrong, but realistic given what he knew at the time, Shallan was attracted to Kaladin, but stayed with him out of pity. Hence, he offers to take himself out of the equation and he does mention saying it hurts and his difficult for him. In other words, Adolin does not want to let Shallan go, but he feels he needs to do it because he firmly believes she loves another. It is also worth mentioning, right before Adolin makes his move, Shallan utterly, coldly dismiss him as if he were her servant in order to go seek Kaladin. Adolin is not being selfish: he just believes Shallan loves Kaladin and he is a gentleman enough to respect her wishes, but of course, since it is Adolin, it comes out wrong. Adolin is just not good at relationships, at saying the right things and, in this scene, we just see how much of a fish out of the water he is when he tries to do the right thing the wrong way.
  4. I think you are purposefully misquoting me and purposefully reading words into my posts which aren't there. I have clearly stated I did not believe Adolin was a protagonist which are the characters getting a focus book, but I have said he is the next best thing after that. The story doesn't break down after Dalinar/Kaladin/Shallan to fall into meaningless minor characters: there are other roles to be filled and Adolin happens to be one of them. The story isn't made up of 10 protagonists and then... nothing. It is too big for this, the scope is too large, hence we have "other characters" who aren't exactly minor, who are getting their own arcs, even if smaller and I, for one, have decided Brandon wouldn't have wasted page time in getting Adolin connect with Maya if he didn't plan to actually write something about it. Call them as you want, but among those characters, Adolin is the most predominant one, he is the one with the most viewpoints. The reason I used other characters was to highlight how biased the argument saying "Adolin hasn't had a strong enough contribution to the narrative, therefore he will never get one". It means nothing. Plenty of characters have done much less than Adolin in those books and yet Brandon said they would, someday, be very important. Yeah, he never said this about Adolin, but no one asked him this question either. All we know is Adolin isn't getting a focus book. Neither is Moash and yet everyone is going to argue we are going to keep on reading about him. Also, getting a book is not a finality in itself: Eshonai too was getting a book and see where this got her. She will never be a focus character when we all thought she were. Who's to say Brandon will not expand on Adolin's role in future books? He focused a lot on Shallan/Kaladin/Dalinar. In OB, we saw the intense focus on Kaladin, within the first two books, made it so there was much less to write about the character in OB. It disappointed some readers, but truth is, Kaladin didn't need more page time for his arc to wrap up. I believe Shallan will get a similar treatment in book 4 for the very same reasons. The main interest with Dalinar's character has always been his past, not this is out in the open, is he the right character to get the very large arc? More politics? The way I see it, Brandon may very well decide to write a book where the narrative is more evenly split into more numerous characters. Adolin will never get an arc as big as the protagonists, everyone agrees on that, no one argue it should be the case, but I don't see how some readers can jump in, decide they are personally intimate of Brandon's plans, and make the call the character is never getting a stronger, better narrative. Anyway, this conversation is turning out to be frustrating, so I agree to drop it and move on. I'll allow the others to make up their mind on their own. Brandon said he would cut down on the supporting cast, he did not say he would cut down on Adolin. And within OB's supporting cast, there are great many characters which are considerably more minor than Adolin: Jasnah, Renarin, Lift, Szeth, Navani, Bridge 4. So yeah, he'll cut somewhere. It is unlikely he will write another part from Bridge 4's viewpoint in book 4. He'll also probably cut down on the Dalinar/Kaladin/Shallan page time too as he said he would. Also, he never said the "focus" character was "always" getting the 100K words narrative. Worst, he even said this would not always happened. He said the patter of the first books would not repeat itself for all books. So why take for granted something which hasn't been written out yet? A book we know next to nothing about? Once we start getting WoB and information on book 4, once the plan gets more confirmed, we'll know. Right now however, we just do not know, so I will avoid making speculations out of thin air. It could be you are right, it could be I am wrong, but right now, we just do not know and I have decided I would believe beta readers when they say they don't feel like Brandon would have written out Adolin if he did not have a plan. Ultimately. Yeah, I tend to agree the promises the character left weren't exactly fulfilled. It is why I have been saying, had he have more page time, those arcs might have happened. Oathbringer was a bizarre book because, frankly, none of the characters talked about the real issues nor the real things. It was not just Adolin, but everyone. He is the only non-Radiant Kholin: his character is not reflecting on that, but neither are the others.. No one is asking about why some are made Radiants and not others, no one is questioning the process. We had one entire part on squires, but nothing on Radiant. Hence, it seems to me, the arcs promised which were to revolve, in part, around Adolin just didn't happen in this book, not for him, but not for anyone either. Brandon just tossed the characters elsewhere and never left them time to actually wonder about things. Hopefully, the next book will tackle those issues. If anything OB did flesh out the Dalinar/Adolin relationship. This is where the focus of Adolin's arc was: it was in part in Dalinar's flashbacks, how he grew up to worship his father, how his relationship with Dalinar is born out of expectations he feels he will never meet. We got a lot of Adolin's backstory in those, he was strongly featured into those. Also, this arc barely started to move into the main narrative when the book ended. Will Brandon expand on it? It is hard to say, but it definitely isn't something I feel was closed nor finished. Huh, I always felt Adolin was a more interesting Edgedancer than Lift because he has to overcome his upper-crust upbringing to move into their ideals which seems like a more interesting progression than having a street urchin care about other street urchins. The step is just bigger for Adolin, the path just takes him away from what he has been so far: I just thought it made up for a more interesting read than silly mouthy Lift, but I guess others have different opinions.
  5. And what has any other character accomplished? You are most definitely set into destroying every single action Adolin has ever done in order to steer back into the minor role you are determined to believe he is having. There is one thing to be said about minor characters versus non-minor character which this discussion is completely ignoring: how readers are reacting to the character. A good minor character will pop into the story, provide something useful or interesting and move back into the background. Readership will never expect a minor character to have a narrative nor viewpoints. This is where Adolin literally fails at being this minor character some are insisting he is: readership is expecting a bigger role, readership is talking about him, readership is saying it was disappointing his story arc wasn't bigger. As thus, if Brandon intended for Adolin to be a minor character, then he has failed. Now, I trust Brandon is a talented enough writer to understand how he plays his readership. Now to the big question, what has other character accomplished which is considerably more important it makes Adolin's contribution meaningless? What has Kaladin accomplished in OB? We could decipher every single character, break it down and claim it "wasn't all that important" or "someone else could have done it". Yeah. Brandon never needed Shallan's character: he could have had Jasnah unlock the Oathgate and go to Kholinar. Why Shallan? Because Brandon wants it. So why Adolin? Because Brandon has written him. Every single narrative could have been entirely re-written without one of its character, but this is besides the point: if a narrative needs to be re-written because one character is removed from it, then this character is a great deal lot more important than the meaningless role you insist Adolin fulfills. An example of a real minor character readers like but could be removed from the narrative without drastically changing it? Lopen. Remove Lopen, what changes? Practically nothing, but he shines in his scenes, readers like him, he's popular, but everyone realizes and understands he is a minor character. Is the same true for Adolin? Nope. The thunderclast scene has more purpose than just having Adolin fight a monster. It allows Adolin to make the first steps towards reviving/bonding Maya which is an incredibly interesting narrative as it involves a dead-spren and something everyone believes is impossible. It also allows Renarin to step up, to take the lead, to push his brother away from the fight where he might get kill and do the kill himself. Why is this scene important? Because Brandon wrote it. Brandon decided it was an important scene to add to the book: without it we wouldn't have gotten Maya, we wouldn't have gotten Renarin's moment of glory. Maya is an arc, it is just one which happens close to the ending of the book, but it remains an arc nonetheless. And one which revolved around Adolin like not other arcs before. Now, I do agree with you when you state not enough was written for Adolin's character to make the arc powerful: this is absolutely true. I however do not feel it is right to say we have never been in his head nor do we know his feelings. We know he feels unworthy of his father, we know he didn't want to be the king, we know he has a love/hate relationship with his murder of Sadeas: we actually got into his head a lot more than within the previous books, but it is true it pales next to say, Shallan. This book was particularly deep in terms of Shallan/Dalinar inner thoughts, so anything else reads as dim and unsatisfactory. This being said, the desire to have Adolin get a stronger narrative is intrinsically linked to some readers feeling the story would be stronger for it, especially now with Maya. No one argued Adolin was a main character, but I have argued he was an "important" character. Brandon has had lesser character than Adolin get narrative, so there is no reason to believe Adolin will be the exception and end the series without a stronger voice. No I didn't particularly like Shallan's arc in OB, this is true. I have however acknowledged several times others did love it just as I have acknowledged there were readers who liked Adolin's overall arc. The romance for instance is an arc I am partial over: I did not disliked it, but I did find it could have been done better. I have also acknowledged the arc absolutely does not work out for other readers. 8 years, 3 books and "important" characters such as Jasnah and Renarin still haven't gotten much of a narrative, let alone a story arc. Their book won't happen until book 8 and ( (if I am not mistaken), so what if Adolin's arc didn't really pan out within the first three books? What prevents Brandon from taking the time to write a better one in book 4? Didn't he take the time to flesh out Bridge 4 and this awful Moash? Why not Adolin? Why give page time to Bridge 4? Why give page time to Moash? To Renarin? To anyone for this matter? Because the story is stronger when its characters are fleshed out. OB is stronger because we got to know Bridge 4 more, not weaker. I sincerely believe any book giving enough page time for Adolin's character to feel satisfying for all readers will be stronger for it, not weaker. Well Brandon is not perfect, I do think he dropped the ball in OB with Adolin, but maybe, as others have suggested, he does have a plan and it will make better sense once we read book 4. Maybe he didn't drop the ball, maybe he's just thinking farther ahead than I am thinking. How can I know? Brandon said many things with respect to Adolin, but forces are to admit more WoB on the matter predates the release of OB. Many had to do with the murder of Sadeas which Brandon never intended to play out strongly, so it does explain Brandon's comments. Brandon also said Adolin's narrative was "surprising", "interesting" and "unpredictable". He said the character would get a story arc of his own. Not everything is black nor white. It is kind of grayish and yeah, maybe the next book will not be great for Adolin, it is hard to evaluate, but there are readers who are utterly convinced the author does have a plan for Adolin. We just haven't read it yet. So while yes, he isn't one of the protagonist, it doesn't bar him from being an important character. In between "protagonists" and "minor characters" there is "other major characters" which is right where Adolin falls into. Also, as I said above, why wait until book 4 to give Adolin a stronger narrative? Why wait until book 8 to give Jasnah a focus? Why introducing Venli in book 3 and make her a "protagonist" even if she hasn't really gotten the focus an Adolin got? Why? Because the story is not over yet. Not everything will play out within the first three books. Many more things will happen and right now, what I am seeing is Adolin is the only non-Radiant in our group, he feels unworthy of his wife/father he will be the Highprince when Dalinar is still there over-shadowing him, he has started to bond Maya. "Nothing" doesn't even begin to describe Adolin right now: he has a lot going on right now. In fact, he has more going on than many other characters.
  6. Love is about being able to see your partner under his/her every color on an every day basis: the good with the bad, the hard with the soft, the beautiful with the ugly. Love is about seeing this other individual you are sharing your life with, with his rights and his wrongs, and accept them. Love isn't about pandering to someone else nor is it about constantly seeing someone's else needs above your own (sometimes it gets to be about you, sometimes it needs to be about you): it is about sharing life together, making decisions together and yes sometimes it is about cutting off your partner, being over-excited. Yeah, it can sometimes be about yelling at your partner or crying or tearing your hair out. Sometimes it is beautiful, sometimes it is ugly, but it most certainly isn't about trying to do everything your partner demands of you: it is more about finding the right balance. And no, sometimes love doesn't get it right. In fact, often, it gets it wrong, but what matters, in the end is love remains what makes two individuals choose to walk their path in life together, even if it isn't perfect. Adolin saw Shallan fractured, crushed under her personalities and he took her in. He also saw her being passionate about her art and he took her in. He saw put her life in danger, venture into risky adventures and he took her in. He suffered being abrupt to him, dismiss him or not really pay attention to him, at times, and he took her in. I hope he will see happy Shallan, smiling Shallan, excited Shallan as much as sad Shallan, crying Shallan and needing comfort Shallan. Shallan saw Adolin being over-excited about sometime important to him and yeah, it was hard, but she still took him in. Shallan saw Adolin being stressed out because of his father's expectations and she took him in. She saw him fight, she saw him bloody and sweaty and she took him in. I hope she will see hurting Adolin, crying Adolin, distressed Adolin, needing comfort Adolin as much as steady Adolin and smiling Adolin. No relationship is ever going to be perfect and if relationship were to be doomed to failure because one time, one partner didn't have the perfect level of perceptiveness, because one time, one partner, pushed for something he is obviously very passionate about, then their would never relationships because no relationship can exist without those moments happening. What matters is not what happened during the scene, but after. What matters is it did happened and Shallan still chose Adolin. Or so this is what it is to me. Love. Complicated, difficult, but rewarding, easy and, at the same time, so hard.
  7. Adolin teaching Shallan sword-fighting is one of my favorite scene within their relationship. I thought it was absolutely mesmerizing to read a character testify of so much passion into an activity he loves: no other character has given us the same amount of passion within any other narratives. So obviously, yes, Adolin is very excited on the prospect of sharing something which is so important to him with someone important to him. *rant mode on* As such, I strongly disagree with any characterization which somehow makes him the villain here. I strongly disagree Shallan is a precious little flower who's every whims and thoughts have to be taken with extraordinary care in order to avoid her from crumbling down. In other words, the fault in this scene is not Adolin, it is Shallan. She is the one who doesn't want to face responsibilities, she is the one running away from reality, she is the one who creates Radiant. Not Adolin. Adolin doesn't create Radiant nor he is enabling her: Adolin is just trying to share something which is important to him with a young woman he loves: he doesn't get to be shown in a negative light because Shallan is unable to assert herself. He doesn't get to be given the bad role because he somehow failed to grasp the barely visible signs Shallan might not want to do Blade training. This is not his fault. This being said, I also disagree the optimum partner for Shallan would be the one who is absolutely on his knees, in front of her, to obey her every wish, to dissect her every words, to read her every expression in order to absolutely totally not fluster her in any possible way. This is just unrealistic. Could he have been more perceptive? Probably, but does he always have to be 100% perceptive each time he is with Shallan in order to avoid triggering something bad? Should any husband of Shallan be expected to behave this way? Even Kaladin? *rant mode off*
  8. What myself and other readers are trying to get at is Adolin has become a too important player within the narrative to keep on being tossed to the side each time someone else walks into the room. So while you are arguing Jasnah does important things too without getting viewpoints, I will counter argue Jasnah doesn't do nearly half or even a third of the things Adolin accomplishes within the narrative. He is our main viewpoint during larger scale battles, he is one of our only action-oriented character (together with Kaladin): he is so entangled within the narrative, the story literally falls apart without his viewpoints. I also do not get where the commentary stating Adolin never takes initiative for himself comes from when the only reason the 4 on 1 duel happened was because he took the initiative to book himself a tricked duel. The meeting with Eshonai happens because he took the initiative to have it. The Plateau battle is won because of his initiative. The crew escapes Kholinar because of his initiative. They navigate through Shadesmar in part because of his initiative, not just him, but he played a significant role in leading the group. The thunderclast fight happened because of his initiative so, really, I do not get how Adolin's character can be read as one with no agency nor a significant contribution to the narrative other than providing a "third person's perspective". I also do not understand why having some readers express their thoughts on the matter, state they feel the narrative would have been stronger had Adolin had more viewpoints takes away from others nor do I understand this need to launch an anti-Adolin campaign. Shouldn't we all be rooting for stronger, better development for ALL characters? Not just 2 or 3? Wouldn't the story be stronger if Adolin had enough viewpoints to convince the readers both the romance and the Maya arc is actually well-wrapped around, well-explored and earned? Why is it so bothersome for some to have others argue the story needs more Adolin? And one of the reasons the romance arc has failed, in the eyes of a significant number of readers, is because Brandon didn't provide Adolin's thoughts on the matter. It might have worked, in Mistborn, to write a convincing love story without giving viewpoints to one of the character, but in SA, Adolin is just too important for his feelings to be skipped over. Little wonder Kaladin/Shallan remains very popular, despite the outcome of entire arc, because, at least, it isn't one-sided, because we get to read Kaladin's thoughts on the matter. Hence, once again, the lack of Adolin's viewpoints is harming the narrative. If I read the lingering discussions on the matter, one thing is absolutely clear: Brandon failed to convinced a significant percentage of his readers of both the romance arc and the Maya arc. Why? Because he didn't take the time to write more in-depth viewpoints for Adolin. Adolin had 30K words in both WoK and WoR. In OB, he actually had less than within the previous books despite having his character arc end in a cliffhanger which became one of the most anticipated arcs for the book. Stating he should have gotten, as a bare minimum, as many certainly isn't a bold nor an over-statement. I would go farther and say his arc could have been doubled and the narrative would have only been stronger. And yes, I do think the main characters had too many viewpoints, on average (not Kaladin, not in this book). Shallan's narrative dragged and repeated itself over and over again throughout the book: her perspective also is not always the most interesting one to read. In Kholinar, I would have traded half of her chapters just to get one Adolin's viewpoint on the situation. Focusing on just Shallan broke the pace and yielded a narrative arc which has been highly criticized. Of course, some readers loved it, but I have read too many critics of it to feel it was wrapped around in an optimum manner. Besides, sometimes less is better and when it comes to a character such as Shallan, less would have probably been better. Why? Because, IMHO, she just wasn't an interesting protagonist to have as the major one in OB. Arguably, there would have been other places to cut down the narrative: it is a matter of choices and I, as a reader, do feel the choices made by the author did not yield the best possible narrative. I personally enjoyed the Bridge 4 viewpoints and I do think they added something to the narrative which is why this isn't where I would personally cut down. I however need to re-state my thoughts: I do believe Adolin's character arc was not written in an optimum manner within OB. Now how many additional words would have been needed to get a better one, it is hard to evaluate: maybe I am over-stating it, maybe not, but I do not understand why readers should be pleased and satisfied in having one of the most prominent character within the narrative to suffer insufficient characterization.
  9. Well, great post Oh Great Unicorn Lady, but I feel I need to offer a few brief, but necessary precision. I obviously cannot speak for others, only for myself, but I would personally hate if Adolin revived Maya, despite it being my favored narrative for his character, without having gone through any significant, scar making hardships. I always felt the interest in having Adolin becoming a Radiant was the opportunity to watch a character experienced a breaking down during the main narrative as opposed to reading it, yet again, through flashbacks. So while Brandon has decided he would orchestrated his narrative around a group of people having dark secrets hidden within their pasts which broke them enough for a Nahel Bond, I feel too much of one thing stops being interesting after a while. In other words, by always playing the narrative of the "painful memories", "hidden past", "terrible secret" Brandon is starting to write similar-like narratives which make a character such as Adolin even more interesting because, with him, it doesn't have to be about the past. It can be about the present. It can be about now and now, with Maya, resolutely sounds very interesting, providing it gets sufficient coverage. Hence, having Adolin revive Maya, casually, just "because" would not be satisfying even if it remains, on the whole, a narrative I have favored. Adolin becoming a Radiant has to be treated with great care within the narrative because many readers are against the idea, because it isn't a popular narrative. I feel the author should not allow it to happen unless he is wiling to spend the page time to make it worth it, to make us root for Adolin and Maya, to make it feel like, as you said, earned it and, because he is a Kholin, he is going to have to earn it more than any other Radiants. This, IMHO, is the interesting narrative for Adolin's character, but it perhaps demands a commitment to the character the author has yet to voice out.
  10. Yes. This is exactly what I was getting at. Dalinar/Shallan had a lot of page time and a lot of focus and yeah, at times, it was redundant. In comparison, Adolin didn't have enough page time to befit the role he has been given within the narrative. An additional 10-20K would have worked miracles with a character such as him. Hence, I am not thinking I am writing a travesty when I am arguing Adolin deserves a bit more focus than what Brandon has allowed him to have. I certainly do not believe I lack understanding within Brandon's plans when I state it'd be great if Adolin's page time was actually devoted... to Adolin's character or if it isn't, then his page time should be increase so he has enough page time to come around better fleshed out. So all in all, I do feel/believe Adolin is an interesting enough character, unique enough within this specific series, additional page time would likely be beneficial to the overall narrative, especially now he has Maya. I mean, do we really want Maya to play out into 5K words worth of page time? I know I don't. This being said, I am not convinced anyone can sway Brandon's perspective on anything, especially not on Adolin. I love the character, the author claims he is treating him fair, but he doesn't seem to be one of his favorites and it shows.
  11. I would add the fact we do not know if Alethkar even has a concept for fitness training... Training seem to be this moment where you start learning weapons. If they have a concept for strength training and overall fitness, we haven't witness it in the books. I do not think it was a mistake not to involve Zahel. Being an Ardent, I doubt Zahel would have the liberty to openly take a young woman as a trainee. I suspect he is bound by the the Ardentia's perception of what is acceptable for a young woman and what isn't. Lighteyed women just do not sword train: this would be the same as a man openly learning how to read without being an Ardent, which arguably ends up happening, but not until the end of the book. Hence, I do think Adolin knew the only way he could train Shallan was in secret which is probably why he insisted in doing it himself. I agree Shallan is Shallan and Veil is false. I personally read Veil as a role Shallan is playing, like an actress. She created a character. First, Veil was just a costume, then Shallan invented a backstory, a personality, everything and each time she plays the role of Veil, she sinks into it up until she believes she is Veil. So while the role does dig into some elements of Shallan's personality, just like good actors will usually infuse some of themselves into the roles they play, it remains a role. However, with her ability to disguise herself, the experience ends up feeling so real Shallan ends up believing she can be Veil, she ends up believing the backstory she crafted for Veil is real, up until she realizes, really, it isn't. I felt her entire story arc in Kholinar was about her come to terms with the fact her "personalities" are lies she made to escape from reality and she can't keep on doing it, but she has gotten so dependent on them, she has a hard time breaking the habit. Or this is how I read it anyway. I also agree Shallan is not a fake, Shallan is, well Shallan. She bonded Pattern, she says truths. She's the one having lived a life: there is no question Shallan is a real person whereas Veil/Radiants just aren't.
  12. Readers aren't as ignorant about Brandon's decisions as this post make it sound. Everyone knows Adolin is not a main character, but some of us do find his importance to the narrative dictate a slightly bigger role than the one he has gotten in OB. I would also point out Adolin might have been added late into WoK, but something very important seems to be missing from the analysis: without Adolin WoK's entire narrative falls apart. When a character is needed for a narrative to: 1) make sense, 2) be coherent with itself, 3) make for an interesting to read story, then I do feel, just right here, he has moved pass this minor character square his detractors are insisting he must belong to. A character which is needed for the narrative to work as it was planned is not minor. An example of a real minor character? A real darkhorse ensemble? Lopen. I think you are confusing character with an importance within the narrative and supporting character. Jasnah, for instance, is a more minor character because her importance to the main narrative is lesser. In other words, Jasnah does not drive the main narrative, not yet however. In WoK, she acted as Shallan's teacher, a needed position, but not one requiring strong characterization nor viewpoint. She as absent in WoR and her presence in OB wasn't required. So while yes, Jasnah had a role to play within the Taylenah battle, the climax could have easily been re-written to do without her. Was the story stronger because she was in it? YES. But could it have remained relatively intact without her? Yes too. However, without Adolin too many narrative arcs need to be re-written. Doable? Yes, but then the story would not have been the same. Adolin thus cannot be removed from SA without changing significantly the narrative: too many arcs just do not work out when they just don't happen if he is gone. Right here and there is the difference in between an important character and a supporting one. An important character is intrinsically mixed within the narrative and plays a significant enough role within it he cannot be removed without changing large sections of it. This is true for Adolin in all three books, this is wrong for Jasnah in OB, less so in WoK as the role she played was important even if not central, even if it didn't come with a character arc unlike Adolin. I also disagree with Adolin being so minor readers are completely clueless about his motives and are just inventing them. We know his motives, but Adolin is a complex character and, as such, readers have various interpretation of the character. These however do not exist because the character is a blank slate, these exists because some readers just find him interesting and like to speculate on where he may go from here. I think some readers are having a strong misconception as to what readers such as myself are actually envisioning when they are asking for a stronger narrative for Adolin. Let's put things in perspective. Dalinar had 111K words, Shallan had 106K words, Kaladin had 75K words and Adolin had 21K words. In between 21K and 75K words this an entire world. Nobody ever expected Adolin would get a narrative as focused and big as Shallan's (even if I wish it were the case, I know Brandon has no such plans), but it is very reasonable to think the fourth character in importance, within the series, could get a little bit more words in order to make his narrative both satisfying, detailed and deeper. Say going from 21K to 40K would change things dramatically for a character such as Adolin without making him over-step over on the "leads". Hence no one is arguing for Adolin to get the 100K words narrative, everyone knows this will never in a thousand years happen, but more would be welcomed, more would strengthened the overall narrative. Great post which highlights Adolin's contribution to the narrative.
  13. The post is well-phrased and not aggressive: you worries were unfounded We can disagree one with another without yelling at each other. What our dear Mods are trying to hammer into our heads is if yelling is all we feel like writing, then perhaps we should close the computer and go do something else for a while. Say run 10km to help vent out. My comment was meant as a hyperbole. Of course, Lin Davar was order of magnitude worst with his children than Dalinar was: as much as I like to rant against Dalinar, he, at least, hasn't tried to physically harm nor murder his children. I however find it an odd threshold to use to evaluate Dalinar's parenting as if all it took to be a good parent was not to restrain oneself from killing the children. This being said, my commentary was using an argument we are all going to agree on which is: Lin Davar has consistenyl been a bad father to his children, his terrible actions not being reserved to the few scenes Brandon chose to show us to make the argument we can't say Dalinar was a stellar father and the events we witnessed were one time errors. In both cases, Brandon showed us broken parental relationships which are different, not on the same scope of bad, but yet are dysfunctional. I do agree with the statement wanting Adolin not to show obvious signs of distress following his upbringing: I have said as much within some of my posts. It may be what mixes the cards greatly: because he appears so well-adapted then it must be because whatever happened to him is not worth talking about. I have a different opinion. People can react very differently to trauma and not everyone becomes wrecks, not everyone reacts by closing down on oneself, not everyone turn rebellious: there are just many ways to react to a messed up childhood and I don't think there is a manual which states a given trauma will automatically yield a given reaction. Adolin is someone very prone onto bettering himself, into wanting to please others, into not disappointing. Some kids just grow up this way: they say what they think others want them to say, they like what they think they should like, they have a hard time finding their own-self is sufficient enough to be accepted by others. What triggers it? It is so complicated and various: it is hard to tell, but I definitely think not having had the validation of your own self-worth, as a child, by a parent you love could be it. Hence, while Adolin has no tragic scars like Shallan, he still thinks little of himself. He sill views his father as perfection incarnated. He still completely lacks the capacity to have critical judgment over his family which is highly untypical for a young man his age. If criticize, he takes for granted he is the one to blame, he agrees he deserves to be criticized. What I was trying to get at, with my previous posts, is how this behavior is very similar to the one you often see with victims of abuse. Say the woman who believes the husband was right to hit her, who thinks if he is violent, then it must because she is to blame. Now, before someone jumps to the roof, I am not saying Dalinar/Adolin is the same nor am I calling Adolin a victim of house abuse, but I am saying the behavior he has adopted seems to me like a lesser version of the ones victims of such households often adopt. I thought this was an interesting theme to explore because it came into the narrative unexpected. If we look back into the flashbacks, young Adolin started hero worshiping his father at a very young age. Within the "evil fighting chulls" scene, Adolin is about 4 and a half and he doesn't know his daddy. Yeah, Dalinar has been around, some, during Adolin's early years. He certainly didn't ignore his birth like he did with Renarin, but he wasn't around enough for his 4 years old son to be able to recognize his daddy. I have a son: an adorable blueish/grayish eyes, somewhat red haired little boy who turned 5 recently. My son would know his daddy within a crowd of a hundred. My son, upon seeing his daddy, usually runs forward, jumps into his arms while screaming: "Daddy!". My son refuses to take his bath if daddy is not giving it to him. He insists daddy is the one to tuck him into bed, first, then mommy, but daddy comes first. My son was about little Adolin's age when I read the book and seeing a boy the same age not recognizing his daddy, being a little bit afraid of this scary man his mother pointed to him as being "daddy", to salute him: it too broke my heart. At 4 and a half years old, Adolin did not know who his father was and, when he sees him, he is a big bad scary man with a giant shardblade. Automatically, this little boy, this boy with a vivid imagination (not all kids make up their own disguise and story arcs, a lot do, but some are more keen on other kind of playtime), started making up stories with this father and one thing is obvious within this "first" encounter is Adolin wants to please his father. He salutes him. He claims he too wants to win himself a Shardblade, even when this daddy of his tells him it's OK if daddy wins one for him, the boy wants to do it all by himself. Like his father. And so it starts, the stepping stones of the Dalinar/Adolin relationship were lay on the ground. Adolin would worship his father, think him amazing and eventually become unable (or not without difficulties as we do see Adolin questioning his father's decisions back in WoK, but it was through abnormal circumstances and it had nothing to do with him) to acknowledge his own worth outside of what his father told him what worth was. On the rest, I think readers are assuming Adolin's childhood was perfect because he is not making a big deal out of it, he is not complaining, he is not acknowledging what happened through it except during this one moment where he talks about how his mother died. This scene was interesting because both Kaladin/Shalan immediately sense those memories are painful ones for Adolin which is the first (and so far only) time he is speaking of events having affected him. How he has convinced himself Dalinar would have prevented Rathalas from burning had he not been hurt and grieving was just so sad... On the matter of Renarin, I think it was already agree upon within the fandom he had a crap childhood due to his sickness. The fact he is a Radiant and hence broken implies hardships and trauma. OB gave us more insights and Renarin's life truly had its hardships, but they were different than the ones his brother had. They also impacted him differently and in a more visible manner. I mentioned downplaying Adolin's childhood mostly in response to comments saying it was perfect. Perfect is an overstatement, reality was short of perfect. This being said, I do not think Dalinar's behavior towards Adolin is entirely conscious: he is a demanding man and he does not know how to love. His love is a demanding one, he loves the people able to give him something he wants, hence he loves Adolin for his potential to be his redemption, but I don't think he loves him for who he is. I don't think Dalinar was capable of loving someone, truly, during those years. I also believe this is how he warmed up to Renarin: the boy gave him something he never thought he deserved, compassion. For the rest, while I do agree not telling the truth about your past to the man you are about to marry is odd. I however do not think it means the relationship is doomed to fail: it means it still has room to grow, but I see not reason why this would be enough to break them apart.
  14. I understood the sentence, I disagree nonetheless with the comment. Very few character traits is something which would more aptly describe most of Bridge 4, Lyn the scout, random soldiers, Gaz, Lopen and plenty of other very minor characters. They do have traits, but they mostly are blank slates readers can use to project on. I find comparing Adolin, who shall I remember is the fourth character in importance within the narrative, to several considerably more minor characters, saying he is exactly the same is just trying to put the square peg into the circle. It does not fit. Adolin may not have as much characterization as Dalinar/Kaladin/Shallan, but he has more than practically every other character within the narrative. When readers complain on the lack of characterization, they do not complain over the fact there is none, they complain over the fact there isn't enough considering Adolin's importance within the narrative which is considerably bigger than the darkhorse ensemble trope demands. Adolin is not a blank slate readers project on: he is a character with a backstory, a personality and motivations which are explained within the narrative. Not with the amount of details I wish they were, but they are still there. Adolin is a very polarizing character because he is considerably more complex than the author is acknowledging : there is the duality of the man he projects and the man he really is. Since those two are muddled, readers argue about who is the real Adolin, but this isn't because the character has "few traits", this is because the story hasn't dig into him as deeply as within other characters. Again, the list of characters actually fitting into this trope is rather telling: not one come anywhere close to the characterization and the narrative impact of an Adolin. Luna Lovegood is an interesting character, all this is true, but she's got what, 4-5 scenes within seven books whereas Adolin has had recurrent viewpoints for three books. I this point in time, I think some readers just want Adolin to be a meaningless minor character and are just trying to use the fact some readers are disappointed with his overall arc to try to steer the popular opinion into having him become this meaningless minor character. The problem is Adolin doesn't fall within the category of minor characters. While what makes a character minor and not another is often open to interpretation, I personally disagree Adolin is one within the narrative we have read. As I explained above, I do believe, based on the examples the trope listed, to be a darkhorse ensemble, one needs to have much less characterization than Adolin has not to forget considerably less impact within the narrative. Adolin is participating to the main narrative, he leads the actions during a few sequences: right here and there, he fails to be minor often to be classified within this trope. Is he a fan's favorite? Definitely. Does it feel like the character is not getting the characterization his position within the story demands? Definitely, but it is still not enough for him to be shrink down to minor non-fleshed character. As for Brandon, I personally believe a story is always stronger when all active characters are fleshed out decently and this includes Adolin. I also find his personality is so different than the other characters putting in the background is harming the narrative more than helping. For instance, what did not work for many readers in OB? The "protagonists" didn't talk one with another, they all centered themselves on their own self, they all had arcs which were very independent one from another despite evolving within the same scenes. They all went through very internal, often redundant introspective narrative which made the story tedious to read for some, downright uninteresting for others. Giving Adolin, an outward character who's story is always intervened with other characters, a bigger spot would add a new dynamic to the narrative. His struggles differ so widely than the "broken hidden pasts filled with secrecy" of other characters, it makes them interesting, contrasting: too much of one thing tends to be boring. Brandon wanted his leads to have "dark secrets they can't deal with" in their past, what he overlooked is how repetitive this can be when he does with nearly every single protagonist he has thought of. Hence, Adolin breaks the pattern and any character which breaks the pattern becomes interesting. Brandon understands this to some extend, but I do feel he is so afraid of adding too many viewpoint characters he purposefully cuts down on the narrative of his other characters. The irony of it is OB often gets criticized for having too many new viewpoint, hence the idea Adolin should have less because it clogs the narrative doesn't gold the road. This being said, I agree with your commentary saying Adolin should have a more regular viewpoint: we should have his be intervene with Kaladin/Shallan/Dalinar as these characters often have too many viewpoints which can sometimes harm their narrative. It didn't in previous books, but it did in OB, IMHO.
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