Wednesday, August 8, 2012
Arrows Fall (The one where no one communicates like effective adults)
This would have to be my favorite of all three books, although that's not saying a whole lot. I suppose if I took all three and squashed them together into one book, the third book did bring up something started in the first. The second book wouldn't have really been of any importance then though, aside from bringing her and Kris closer together. Confusion aside, the pseudo love triangle between Kris, Dirk and Talia kept things interesting if not frustrating. Truly, the plot could've been resolved in five seconds if any bothered to speak to one another, but of course for drama, it had to be dragged out.
Unnecessary Point #1: So the biggest and main issue in this book is that Dirk and Talia are meant to be together and their own stupidity is keeping them apart. Oh and the fact that Talia opened up her legs for his best friend Kris. Yet what do they do about it? Do they discuss things like rational adults? No. Talia remains silent (she's really good at that, oh passive character that she is) and Dirk becomes an alcoholic. And since Kris is the best friend, does he bother actually telling Dirk that Talia's interested in him? No, everyone plays avoidance games and draws this entire issue out much longer than necessary.
Unnecessary Point #2: How much everyone trusts Orthallen. Okay, he has a reputation for causing trouble. He's constantly arguing with Talia and yet, Talia's supposed best friends, Kris and Elspeth both fall for Orthallen's misguided advice. Now, yes, he's supposed to be a master manipulator, as he is actually a traitor (gasp! didn't see that one coming 500 miles away) And most of the characters are rather dumb with a lack of common sense, but the fact that nobody but Talia and the armsmaster notices the issue seems kind of ridiculous. Orthallen does plenty of obvious things that don't lend to good manipulation and is rubbish at covering his tracks.
Unnecessary Point #3 When Talia is captured, I thought the rape in that situation was one of the most brutally pointless parts of the book. It serves no purpose except to point a big flashing sign to Ancar and Hilda saying, oh, look how wicked they are! I've seen some stories where it actually fits based on the villain and comes from a deranged mindset, etc, but this just was so abrupt and seemed inserted just to shock the reader into hating the villain rather than building that hate throughout the story. They could've done without all the torture and rape and instead rather threatened it and achieved the same establishing effect, that the villains are evil.
Despite the unnecessary points of the book, I enjoyed it the most of the three, probably because even though a lot of it was ridiculous, the lifebond between Dirk and Talia was a fun way to explore the idea of soulmates and when they two of them interacted, it made you care for the characters more than all of their "struggles" in the other two books.