Readalong: Kushiel’s Dart: Week 06

Kushiel's Dart: a #WyrdAndWonder Read-along

Considering how many pages KUSHIEL’S DART clocks in at, I can’t believe how quickly I flew through it. It certainly didn’t feel like a thousand-plus page book. While I admit struggling with the audiobook initially (and with how sexualised young Phèdre is), this was a 100% five-star read at the end of the day. I’ve bought had copies of the entire trilogy and I’m excited to continue it. I hope I’ll get to at least KUSHIEL’S CHOSEN by the end of the year.

Why is the cover so ugly though?! *sob*

‘To damnation, and beyond.’

Week Six | Chapter Eighty through the end

Phèdre risks everything yet again on a chance to finish what she started, and keep her word to Ysandre. Joscelin does the same trying to thwart Selig, if not stop him. What were your thoughts about their last confrontation with the Skaldi warlord, and what it means for their relationship?

Oft! I was pretty lost on what Phèdre’s plan was going to be, to be honest.

The whole scene was pretty horrific to read and I was really glad when she sort of zoned out.

As for Joscelin, I loved that — as per always — both these little shits do whatever the hell they’re going to do no what what anyone else thinks. It was so in-character for both of them when Phèdre realised he’d shown up. I thought it was a nice twist though, that his big plan wasn’t actually to save the day and Phèdre.

Isidore d’Aiglemort turns out to be the hero that Terre D’Ange needs, if not the one they want. Do you think Phèdre made the right call, making him that offer? What do you think of his final act, and the reasons that drive him to it? Is he a hero, or was he ultimately still only a tool in the hands of others?

I really like that he’s not really got an entirely noble motive for making his big final play.

He has to know that he’s pretty much doomed either way and I like that spite sort of tips him into doing the right thing. There are plenty of heroic and noble characters — in this book alone, but in fantasy novels in general — it’s interesting to have someone that does the heroic thing for less than selfless motives. He’s neither a complete hero or a total villain, and I thought that was a nice change.

Pain obliterates everything else. In pain, there is only the eternal present.

Melisande faces the consequences of her actions, though it seems her ‘deep game’ is not over. Do you think she was prepared for her plan to fail, or was she seizing any opportunity to save herself with that escape? What are your thoughts on her after her last conversation with Phèdre?

I think she probably had a few different contingency plans in mind. Maybe not something completely concrete, but a host of opportunities and options she would tweak and turn if things didn’t go her way. She seems like the sort of person who keeps a lot of irons in the fire, but has the smarts to seize her chances when they arise.

Finally, everyone gets a chance to rest and recover, and Phèdre is richly rewarded for her deeds – in a few senses. How do you feel about her (double-edged) Happily Ever After with Joscelin? And do you think she’s doing the right thing, choosing to find the traitor who freed Melisande in her own way?

I’m pretty sure she’s making a huge mistake, but then I still don’t fully understand her connection/ obsession with Melisande. I mean, I understand it as far as the character is concerned, I just don’t really understand why she feels that way.

She’s been told so many times just to move on and forget about Melisande and all her schemes but she seems determined to set herself up for disaster time and again.

I know that she plans to use her sexy spy skills to uncover the truth, but without someone with more political understanding (Phèdre’s successes politically have always felt more driven by luck and instinct than design to me) I wonder how she’ll really know who/ what to target.

Plus, there are two more books in this trilogy, so disaster has to be coming right? I really thought Phèdre’s next mission for herself – her priority – would be freeing Hyacinthe.

We are all alike, in the end, and none of us to be had merely for the taking.

4 thoughts on “Readalong: Kushiel’s Dart: Week 06”

  1. I’m with you – I like Isidore’s choice all the more for him doing it for all the wrong reasons; but I also like that having decided to throw his force behind the defence he goes all-in and remains icy-cold and ruthless even in helping Phèdre get through friendly lines.

    I’m definitely up for reading on, but it will be the new year before I can start on Chosen (January/February).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ll probably end up leaving Chosen til the new year too honestly. The next few months are busy and I feel like these books are intense and need a certain amount of time/focus for me to really appreciate them.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I bet Phedre would agree with you concerning her ability at politics. It has been her honesty and sometimes her sexiness that has won her what she was seeking in the few political agreements she pulled together in this book.
    And, yes, if you read the rest of the trilogy, there is disaster and heart break and victory and compassion and adventure. Phedre never forgets Hyacinthe but I won’t spoil the trilogy for you.
    It’s been great having you along for the readalong!

    Liked by 1 person

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