the Author

Cast in Peril — discussion thread, and therefore SPOILERS

Posted in writing.

I had a wonderful time at the Worldcon — but I came home to 5 days of email, some of which was compli­cated to sort out, and a revi­sion which had to go back to DAW imme­di­ately (Battle), and a request for a proposal for a book that I had really only barely started (Cast in Sorrow) and a book which is going to be late because I have once again started from Chapter One (Touch)(I have never nuked a book twice before. Usually throwing out an entire book and started from Chapter One is enough. But Touch has been inter­esting. It will be the shortest book in its publi­ca­tion year, when published — but the number of words I’ve written to get to that shortest book will make it longer than even the longest finished CAST novel.)

Also: a book review column and four inter­views because it’s September 2012, and Cast in Peril is about to arrive in bookstores.

I want to thank everyone here who’s rushed out to find a copy. I am grateful beyond words, espe­cially when many of you — by email and posts on this website — couldn’t find the book immediately. 

So: This is the SPOILER DISCUSSION thread for Cast in Peril. Enjoy!

369 Responses to Cast in Peril — discussion thread, and therefore SPOILERS

  1. Meagan says:

    Getting Cast In Peril was a chal­lenge. I ordered my copy from Amazon wayyyyy back when, and knew it wouldn’t arrive until yesterday even with one day ship­ping. However Tuesday came and I was…impatient. So I called 6 Barnes And Nobles. 5 of them claim to have never gotten the books and the 6th told me they had sold out (though I am wondering if they also just didn’t get it in) soooo my desire to get Cast In Peril on the release date…didn’t happen. On the plus side I did get it yesterday :D.

    Absolutely loved it! Read it three times last night after work and now I am already dying to find out what happens next. So not looking forward to the wait, but I will attempt to relearn patience, or I will prob­ably drive everyone around me insane again while I wait. On the plus side? I have success­fully gotten three people to read the series (only one is up to date minus Peril) so at least I have someone to talk to…sort of. 

    I’m not going to be the first person to post spoilers, but I loved this book and had to say thank you!

  2. Annaribbit says:

    I just wish the ebook version of Cast in Peril had come out the 18th like the paper­back, instead of having to wait until 1 Oct. I have all the Cast in books in paper­back except for Cast in Ruin #7 which I bought for my nook. I then went and bought 1 to 6 for my nook along with the novella Cast in Moon­light. But I am waiting.

  3. Hilda says:

    It’s here; it’s here. And Amazon must be controlled by a lunatic. Maybe Michelle can create a char­acter like that in one of her books so we can hate him/her: Lord Diarmat.
    . First they tell me that the book will arrive “next day” (yesterday); then, received another message that would be middle of next week; third, Iwrote customer service and the guy that called was so confused prac­ti­cally told me it will arrive when I see it. This morning I got a new message from Amazon saying it will come tomorrow; imagine my surprise when my son arrived from work and handed me the Amazon bag that was outside the entrance door! After a kitchen dance he said “Open it, maybe it’s mistake”. That calmed me. But it is. Next in the agenda: a night without sleeping.
    Meagan read it 3 times. It’s really a beau­tiful cover. What I could not iden­tify before, it’s clear in the cover. Kaylin is holding the EGG, multi­color. With that sexy dress; I hope she goes to a party dress like that and drive Night­shade crazy.
    Michelle, Thank you!!!!

  4. Liz says:

    On Sept. 18, I put both kids in the car and drove them to the nearest Indigo to get my copy. Took me 2 days to finish reading it, but it was awesome. Loved loved loved the little glass dragon. As usual, couldn’t figure out half of what was happening in the final big battle scene, so I will need to reread it. The Halliones are beyond cool. It was very disori­enting to have the book end upon their arrival at the West March. Actu­ally that’s not correct, they arrived at Hallione Orbaranne, not the Hallione of the West March. So there is a lot more to go. The regalia hasn’t even started yet, although it’s picked its Teller (Nighshade), and its Harmion­iste (Kaylin). I’m glad the Consort survived and the Lord of the West March is well. But why hasn’t Kaylin named her little dragon yet, espe­cially since everyone is telling her to do so? She’s not normally so care­less with her friends. Night­shade is scary, selling his own fief people. Inter­esting that Severn’s mind is “silent” to the Hallione. To bad the bad guy got away, even if injured. I’m glad the Exche­quer affair was fully explained — so 2 Barrani Arcan­ists embez­zled from the human Impe­rial Exche­quer (at the request of the human Caste Court to try to make humans immortal) to pay fieflords in order to buy their fief people for immor­tality exper­i­ments. Then why bother taking people from Tiamaris when they can buy them from Night­shade? Okay, major spoilers, but loved loved the book. Where Cast in Sorrow? Can’t wait. I’ll be getting the ebook on Oct. 1 too.

  5. Meagan says:

    I think Amazon had some major issues as well. My book came on the day it was supposed to, but Tuesday night Amazon changed its status to say Thursday…so I had them call me. I will say the woman I got was ‑amazing- and apol­o­gized several times saying she hoped my book did end up coming Wednesday (which it did), so I am wondering what it is about Peril that makes it do diffcult to get given Barnes and Noble not getting any and Amazon having issues with getting it delivered. 

    I’m also bummed out that I didn’t get my second copy yet. I always read these books till they fall apart so I have had to replace every single one, so I figured I would get the jump on it with Peril. Oh well. 

    Still, having read Peril again I think I have lost the patience I didn’t have when it comes to waiting for Sorrow. Several of my suspi­cious were confirmed, which is always fun. Loving the book still though!

  6. Meagan says:

    This is the third time I’ve posted, but it’s been driving me crazy…is there a reason Anteela became An’Teela? I normally don’t bring up/metion changes or errors in books because I feel A) gener­ally the author’s prob­ably already heard it, and B) in the grand scheme of things I know what was meant so its really unim­por­tant, but of all the things that I caught (sorry!) this one is really catching my atten­tion. Possibly because I cannot, off hand, recall another Barrani name that is broken up in that fashion to begin with so it seems wrong on two levels…

    And, since someone else has mentioned it…I love the glass dragon as well. I also love how the travel to the West March is not some peaceful gath­ering of the Barrani; the action makes the book that much more impos­sible to put down and it almost fits in with the immortal race, though the excite­ment during this travel to the West March is unusual. 

    I also loved how Teela opened up and it her story confirmed a couple of my suspi­cions about her, which is always fun.

  7. BookAttict says:

    Despite pre-ordering Cast in Peril, Amazon sent me an email to expect delivery between October 2nd ‑9th. Now my order status is saying Mon or Tues of next week, although the page says you can get it deliv­ered by Sat 9/22 (if you pay for next day ship­ping). I’m still waiting for a reply to the…ummm… slightly irate…email I sent to customer service pointing out that if someone else can pay to get it deliv­ered by Saturday on a Thursday night, as a Prime member who pre-ordered the book, I should have it by Saturday as well (though tech­ni­cally I SHOULD have had it today.…).

    If Amazon doesn’t say what I want to hear by tomorrow, I’m hitting the phones then running to the book­store that has Peril in Stock!!

  8. Melissa R says:

    I Pre-ordered Cast in Peril last month, and am a Prime member, and paid for one day ship­ping, but I ended up canceling my Amazon order because they couldn’t get it to me by the orig­inal sched­uled date. They even changed my esti­mated delivery date on the release date, sneaky jerks! I do feel a little bad about canceling, but this is how I think I will play it next year too. Preorder from Amazon, then call B&N on release day, and if B&N has the book in hand before Amazon can be both­ered to ship my item, then B&N wins the “please take my money and give me the book!” game.

    But oh, even though getting the book is a pain, it was soooo worth it! Certainly one of my favorites, even if there was too much Severn! I was really hoping he’d stay in the city =P But the Consort makes up for it; she was a fun char­acter to get to know better. As always, within days after the new book is released, I’m already pining for the next one!

  9. Betty Hyland says:

    I had Cast in Peril on order at my book­seller but they tellme that it will not be avail­able till October. I thought you mentioned September 20 but you talk as if it is already out.
    I guess I really don’t under­stand the publishing world as it relates to Canada.
    I daresn’t look at the spoilers it will spoil the suspense!!

  10. Therese says:

    I guess I just got lucky, because my local Barnes had copies when I called them, so I was able to get them to reserve a copy for me. I loved the book, though! So much happened and we’re not even in the West March yet. I can’t wait to find out what happens next. The glass dragon is so amusing. I can’t wait until Kaylin finds his name and can actu­ally have a conver­sa­tion with him.

  11. Chris says:

    Do most people really have trouble out-staring cats?

    Ime they usually only average 15 – 20 minutes, So I very rarely have trouble winning those sorts of contests, but perhaps I’m unusual in this area?

  12. Chris says:

    So was this a conspiracy to keep the book off the Best­seller lists? 

    The B&N around here did have it Wed. though, so at least my wait wasn’t too bad. 

    It’s likely been suggested, or thought of, before, but I thought that “Soli­tude” would make a good title for a Cast book. 

    I was surprised that the publisher redesigned the spine so much, but I guess it’s ulti­mately a good thing as they made your name larger. 

    I defi­nitely enjoyed the book, thanks Michelle!

    I do wish that the book could have been slightly longer (I’m sorry), though I thought that it ended in a good place plot-wise. I had the sense that the book was (I’m not sure of the best word here) stream­lined, condensed, plot-focused, espe­cially later on. That maybe you might have written a tad more expla­na­tion or had a bit more conver­sa­tion, espe­cially as it neared the end, I might be totally wrong, but it’s a theory. 

    Are we supposed to fully under­stand the signif­i­cance of Kaylin shed­ding blood? If you don’t mind my asking, will it be explained more next book, or is it some­thing that we were supposed to under­stand this book, or perhaps accept that we might not completely under­stand it? Or did everyone else under­stand but just not me? ;) 

    There was too much Night­shade for my tastes, but I’d feared that his role in the book might have been even larger, so I’m relived about that. I’m hoping he can be “lost” in the outlands soon, but I know that I’m in the minority and will keep reading regardless. 

    Thanks again and I’m very much looking forward to Battle!

  13. We ebookies have to wait till October 1st. *sad puppy eyes*

  14. Meagan says:

    And two more ques­tions, though they are slightly related…

    Does anyone under­stand why the Consort and the Hallionne are refer­ring to Lord Night­shade as Lord Calar­nenne? I thought Calar­nenne was Night­shade’s True Name, and there­fore shouldn’t it be slightly more hidden? I could possibly see the Consort knowing Night­shade’s true name from the past, if they had been close, but in theory he prob­ably would have been more upset she was using it and/or killed her when he left Court for having it? I also can’t see her just using it in casual conver­sa­tion. Also she uses it when refer­ring to Night­shade to Severn so my thoughts of Kaylin inserting it when other people were talking about Night­shade instead of them truly using it went out the window since Kaylin wasn’t there at the time. I haven’t ask this ques­tion until now because I went back last night and read through a couple of the other books to make sure I wasn’t confusing Night­shade’s name. Still confused slightly so I thought I would ask. On a more uncon­fused and posi­tive note though I was very happy to see Night­shade finally show up. 

    And then the other True Name she spoke, Ynpharion, is also referred to as Lord Ynpharion… unless that wasn’t the true name she saw and she was just using the True Name in ‘silence’ but Ynpharion was used so we knew what was being said? Sort of like in Ruin in regards to Maggaron?

    I was kind of curious in Ruin about that with Maggaron, but the way all those scenes were written implied she merely was calling him by his ‘lesser’ name for the ease of it, but speaking a True Name we never heard when she absolutely had to before switching back to Maggaron. 

    Anyways it could be I misread several things or am just utterly confused, so if anyone could help me out I would be thrilled.

  15. Therese says:

    Meagan, I was curious about that, too. I was surprised when both of their True Names were used. I thought maybe I missed an expla­na­tion some­where in the book due to reading too fast. Did anyone catch some­thing I missed?

  16. sara volk de garcia says:

    Here’s my impres­sions: I think that, for many Barrani, the “true names” and the normal names are the same in English spellings. (I think this is true for Dragons, too — but Kaylin doesn’t know any Dragon true names that she can pronounce, so we haven’t seen an example. I think.) But, the True Name in actual pronun­ci­a­tion isn’t English — it’s the Old Tongue. Usually, this is repre­sented by italics (although I don’t know if there are excep­tions). So, when Kaylin has to take Maggaron’s name in Ruin, it was initially said in italics, and when she must use it, it’s in italics, too (although any of the words she’s thinking are in italics, so it’s not obvious). But, Maggaron has an English pronun­ci­a­tion of his name, too. (I say English here for ease, but I mean what­ever non-Old-Tongue language the speaker is using). That is used conver­sa­tion­ally, and isn’t in italics. So — Calar­nenne, Liri­enne, Ynpharion are all also common-use names when not italicized.

    If this is correct, than what I’M inter­ested in is why Night­shade changed his common-use name from Calar­nenne to Night­shade. He was already using Night­shade when Kaylin et al went back in time to awaken Tara (at least, I think he recog­nized that when Kaylin used it). So… why the change? 

    Also — I love Severn, and I was really glad to hear more from him. I think I’m in the minority — but I think he’s really good for Kaylin, and helps her to under­stand herself better, as well as how she finds her place in her world. Although I did think we were going to learn more about who taught Severn to use his chain (myste­rious Barrani lord in the Wolves who took him to the West March before?). I also think it’s inter­esting that he was able to hide his thoughts from the Hallionne. To add to this — when I re-read Silence, I saw that Tara refers to Severn as “the dark­child” at one point. I am really eager to hear expla­na­tions of these!

    On another topic — is there ever going to be a book that shows us more of the Aerian race?

    Thank you so, so much! I love your writing!

  17. Roberta says:

    I promised my husband that I would buy no more phys­ical books as my book­shelves are packed and we have no room for more. I give it a 50 – 50 chance that I cave and buy the book before the ebook comes out. I also wish that the ebook publishing date coin­cided with the hard­copy version. For now, I wait.

  18. Liz says:

    About how hard it is to find the book — in Ontario, Canada, the major book­seller is Chapters/Indigo/Smithbooks/Coles (all owned by the same company). So if you go to http://​www​.chap​ters​.ca, look up Cast in Peril, then Find It In Store, you can see all the book­stores near your postal code, and how many copies they have. That’s how I located my copy on release day. The phys­ical book is released Sept. 18, the ebook on Oct. 1.

  19. Liz says:

    Of course, if you can, get Cast in Peril from Bakka Phoenix Books in Toronto, which special­izes in science fiction and fantasy.

  20. Suzette says:

    After the debacle with the last ot next to last book (can’t remember), I was able to get the book on Tuesday. I checked for avail­ability at B & N online and they said they were out of stock. However, I took a chance and went down to the book­store and asked the nice ladies at the info desk to check for me and the book had just been placed on the shelf that day. Yippee!
    Book Comments/Questions:
    1- Loved Teela’s back­story. I can’t wait to see the effect Kaylin’s “harmo­niza­tion” has on her.
    2 Loved the Halliones. Although, I found Bert­hole’s brothers to be ubercreepy.
    3- Loved how everyone kept Evarrim at bay.
    4- Can’t wait to find out the baby drag­on’s name.
    5- The Arkon’s got jokes?
    6- Would love to see fan art of the Emperor at the High Lord’s Court. :-)
    7- Who’s taking Kaylin shop­ping when she gets back to Elantra?
    8- Will have to re-read the entire section near the end when she steps off the path to deal with what’s happening to the humans that were sacrificed.
    9- What effect will Kaylin’s healing have on the Barrani?
    10- Am dying to find out about Clint’s family. :-)

  21. Ella says:

    I agree with Chris! I loved the back­ground and hints about Severin and An’Teela. 

    Can’t wait for the next book!

  22. shauntel says:

    It came in Yesterday!! It was suppose to be from Amazon on the 19th recieved yesterday. I loved the book:)

    One of the ques­tions said the bad guy got away, but I thought that Iber­rion name was fading and Kaylin actu­ally grabbed it before it faded. Although she made it seem that there was some­thing else using his name.

    The brothers of the Hallion stated that there were two that were not Lords, what were they? they weren’t undead the consort couldn’t tell, and they stated that the last time undead were found only the consort could tell and she was killed. So What was Lord Iber­rion? Or what was using him. 

    I really want to hear more about the chil­dren of the regalia like teela.

    I like both Night­shade and Severn, even though he sold his fief people. Sorry the anti Night­shade people. Remember that Kaylin is not inno­cent either as she was an assassin.

    Great book waiting for the next!!!

  23. shauntel says:

    I do have one big ques­tion for everyone, and maybe a spoiler. The Barrani Terrano, (I’ll call him one of the Regalia chil­dren) Did anyone else seem to read that Night­shade seemed very inter­ested in him? Is he possibly Nighshades Son?

    It was stated that Teela was old, so that means that all of the Regalia chil­dren are. I thought that they were dead, but it seems that the Barrani only called them dead,(to them), rather than outcast what’s the differ­ence? Just curious.….

  24. LMKSCCRREF says:

    I preordered mine on Amazon as well after a fiasco with Barnes and Noble for the last two books (I MISS BORDERS!!!! They always had the Cast novels on day of release!). No Barnes and Noble has the book within a 50 mile radius for the third book in a row! Last time, when i couldnt find it in stores, I ordered it at the store, and it still took 2 more weeks despite the website saying i could order the book online and get it shipped the next day. For some reason I can find the Michelle West books much easier in the stores, but i guess that has some­thing to do with the different publishers?

    Amazon was still not perfect — I didnt get the book until Thursday, but thats way better than Barnes and Noble.

    I loved the book, and I can’t wait for the next one! I’m the first in my group to get a copy between the issues with getting a hard copy in, and the fact that half my friends who read the Cast novels read ebooks and so are waiting impa­tiently for October…so i’m attempting to not spoil anything for several people which is trying my patience…

  25. Hilda says:

    Although I have to give it more thor­ough reading (I’ll read at least 3 times to grasp the whole; that is one of Michelle’s skills), I’m very confused too with the use of Night­shade’s secret name. The few times that Kaylin used it, he was very upset with her presump­tion(?), (daring)?. Now, it’s an open thing. It was used as a call to his imme­diate soul, brain, his inner voice. Even if the mother of the Barrani may know it, (although this is the new one),she uses it openly. Should we presume other names she uses are also their secret names (but she doen’t use Kaylin’s secret name)?

  26. Meagan says:

    All the names used are used by everyone else constantly accept Night­shade’s and the Barrani at the end, Ynpharion. Having re-read Peril seven times now I am still just as confused on that part as the first time I read it (and still sadly both­ered by An’Teela vs. Anteela). 

    If the True Names were linked to their…public names I’ll call them for lack of a better term, wouldn’t more Barrani have fallen in the Test? Plus, in Cast In Court­light the Lord Of The West March calls Night­shade Lord Night­shae, and then points out that it is signif­i­cant that he calls the Outcaste by his name (the public one). 

    Plus, also in Cast In Court­light, the current Consort’s mother told Kaylin she doesn’t truly see/know the name’s she choses, but she somehow feels it in a way (don’t have the book on me at the moment so I can’t quote the direct passage) which sort of rules out the current Consort knowing it…unless Night­shade gave it to her early on, in which case it is prob­ably a miracle she is still alive. Add to it Lord Andellen is suppos­edly close to Night­shade and he has never once said Lord Calar­nenne and I only get more conflicted on trying to puzzle it out. 

    Not a huge deal…just confusing and almost a mystery which makes it all the more irri­tating since there is a lack of way to solve it instantly. Back to re-reading Peril again to see if I can figure it out I guess. I haven’t been able to re-read it back to back more than twice in a row since its only now Friday and my job involves being outdoors with no time for reading, but tomor­rows Saturday and I actu­ally have the day off! 

    And as for the whole Severn vs Night­shade thing; Severn is an okay char­acter, but he’s too perfect for me, espe­cially given the fact he is a young human. Plus, he’s just always there. I was actu­ally hoping he wouldnt get to come (doubted it, but I did hope) merely because I wanted to see what Night­shade would do without Severn around for an extended amount of time. Night­shade I love as a char­acter. If he was a human I would prob­ably hate his guts, but he is ‑not- and given the rest of his race he’s clearly fairly normal for his race, plus he seems to change more than Severn does as a char­acter and that makes him highly more inter­esting to me. Severn has yet to do anything I haven’t fore­seen or guessed while Night­shade occa­sion­ally does.

  27. Jennifer says:

    Yes! You hit on all my confu­sions on how Night­shade was addressed include that the Lord of the West March called him that as well! Seems like such a switch.

    Also agree that Severn needs a flaw that actu­ally seems like a flaw. Too perfect and rather boring for me right now. I know he killed chil­dren to save Kaylin, but since he also saved the world, it seems less of one. I want him to have a hobby or an interest like Kaylin has the midwives and the orphans.

    I also find it creepy that it is implied he was in love with her when he was 18 and she was barely 13. Granted, they had to grow up fast, but still rather icky to me. Espe­cially when you add the watching her for the next 5 to 6 years without making contact. Night­shade at least became inter­ested with the 20 year old version of Kaylin even if he is way older.

  28. Jennifer says:

    No, I had the same thought that he might be Night­shade’s son. Or at least relative.

  29. Tanja says:

    Dear Michelle — I’m still caught up in your latest story…enjoyed it very much! I knew I wouldn’t be able to stop once I got started reading so even though my book came in earlier this week, I waited until Friday. That was very hard. :) 

    You’ve answered some ques­tions I had, but now have me thinking of several more so I will be impa­tiently waiting until your next book, Cast in Sorrow. The title alone has me concerned over every­one’s fate. Regarding Night­shade and Severn — I appre­ciate the qual­i­ties of both, good and bad; but I can under­stand Kaylin’s continued fasci­na­tion with Night­shade because I share it. — t

  30. Meagan says:

    And I’ve read it a few more times this morning. The only thing I keep going back to is the Consort knows Night­shade’s name and he appar­ently knows hers. Not sure how the Hallionnes also know it, but perhaps that is why so few of them enter their protec­tion when they are awake as I can’t see any Barrani overly enjoying that. 

    The expla­na­tion that leaves is that despite the fact the Consort and the Hallionne use Lord Calar­nenne only someone else who also knows the name hears it. The others perhaps hear some­thing different or nothing at all other than the knowl­edge that those speaking the True Name know it. Like when Tiamaris wanted Kaylin to say Lord Night­shade’s name out loud and Tiamaris heard nothing while Night­shade did. It makes sense (thank­fully because I have gone from being insane to being irri­tated, to driving everyone else around me crazy in an attempt to get ‑someone- to read Peril so I can bounce ideas off of them. One of these days I will have actu­ally get to talk about books with someone for hours without feeling like we are on two entirely different planets) and until I hear other­wise I am tenta­tively accepting that as the expla­na­tion. I know the Consort uses Lord Calar­nenne in front of Severn and the Court, but if they can’t hear the name as a name, perhaps the Consort’s constant use of Calar­nenne is a display of support in a twisted Barrani fashion.

  31. Megan says:

    In the first book, Night­shade told Kaylin he had no chil­dren. Of course, given the Barrani hair­split­ting, he might not consider this a lie, given that the chil­dren aren’t really consid­ered Barrani anymore. Still, I’m leaning toward younger brother. Regard­less, if this person is kin, I wonder whether Night­shade encour­aged him to seek power through the regalia. If so, it might explain some of Teela’s fierce anger with Night­shade and some of Night­shade’s deter­mi­na­tion to reclaim the chil­dren (if that’s what he’s trying to do in the first place. He’s always a bit hard – er, impos­sible – to read.)

    I really enjoyed seeing other sides of our favorite char­ac­ters, and while not all of them were endearing, they certainly were all intriguing. Does anyone else think there might be a connec­tion between the Barrani descrip­tion of hope and Kaylin’s Barrani name? I think when her name took her in Cast in Court­light, the book mentioned how deeply it cut her (it even caused bleeding) but that it was soft to the touch as well. I wouldn’t be surprised if her name has some­thing to do with hope.

  32. Kimber says:

    Loved the book, the two things i didn’t like was 1: too short, now i have to wait for the next one.… :(
    and the second one is that i found an error.
    Not sure if anyone else caught it, But when Kaylin fell asleep beside the consort, the consort talks to Hallionne Kari­asto and he answers the consort as ‘lord Kaylin’…
    Only mistake i found. I have the paper­back, its on page 323 mid way down the papge.

  33. Kimber says:

    I had the same problem, went into Barnes and Noble right after work the day it should have been out, and they didn’t have it! The next day i went in after work again and someone had to go into the back to get it for me. Very disap­pointed in them, wont be shop­ping there anytime soon.

  34. Winc says:

    I did not get the impres­sion that Terrano was Night­shade’s son.
    The rule for the chil­dren was created because of that one single instance and since it became the Barrani’s number one law the names of the chil­dren used would have been known.

    It was a spec­tac­ular failure and based on “Peril” it sounds like the Hallione of the West March was lost because of this.

    Dead” versus “Outcaste”.
    “Outcaste” seems to be a desig­na­tion for any Barrani that goes against the High Court in such a way that they are set outside the normal rule/government. This could be in trying to kill the High Lord and failing or it could be promoting an unpop­ular agenda that is counter to the majority of the estab­lish Lords.

    Dead”, I am sure we will get into that in the next book but with the limited nuggets we have so far I believe that the chil­dren either lost their sanity or were changed in such a way they were not recog­nized as Barrani. (True Name= rewritten) At which point they were consid­ered dead.


  35. Winc says:

    Could “Lord Night­shade” be a title?
    Such as Lord of the West March, High Lord, and Consort.
    Each of them had a name before gaining their titles.

    Based on “Peril” the Consort knew Night­shade before he was outcaste and it seemed like they grew up together or at least were friends (as much as Barrani can be). If Night­shade is a title then the Consort could use his orig­inal name of Calar­nenne as a subtle poke/reminder to the other Lords and Night­shade to play nicely. At least while in her presence

    Of course, the spec­u­la­tion above is pred­i­cated on the idea that Calar­nenne can be used as a regular name. My take on this is based on how Kaylin is being taught the true name of fire. Remember everyone uses fire and can say fire but to actu­ally use the true name of fire is different. You have to under­stand the whole name in the Ancient language. Using True Names may be the same.


  36. shauntel says:

    Hmm, I think you are right about the dead and outcaste. 

    Although I hope Mrs Sagara will clarify some of our questions:) 

    I Still think that Night­shade has some close rela­tion­ship with Terrano.

    I wander if she can answer the ques­tion about when the Hallion’s said that two of the (supposed) barrani were’nt barrani. They weren’t the undead they had the eyes of the barani, but the two signa­tures that Kaylin keeps seeing is driving me crazy trying to figure it out.

    Remember the two signa­tures she saw with the arcane bomb, and the subtle thing around Lord iber­rion name (that was draining it, making it fade)? Maybe I am reading too much into it, but was it shadow or some­thing else. 

    Sharing spoiliers!!:)))

  37. Meagan says:

    I could be wrong…but I thought that it was Kaylin who the Hallionne was speaking to. Espe­cially since when he said (if I remember this correctly, the book is in the other room at the moment so I will stop reading it) ‘Dearer than a daughter to me’ he checked to see if he was using the correct word.

  38. Chris says:

    At one point I saw a “than” that I’m 99% sure was meant to be “then”, but I don’t recall off-hand where in the book it was.

  39. shauntel says:

    I thought he was talking about the Lady (consort) being dearer than a daughter to him. Not Kaylin. I’ll have to reread that section to clear up.

  40. Wonderful book again Michelle — I have loved them all from the begin­ning, but espe­cially love when Kaylin and Night­shade interact. Severn is a bit too bland for my taste, a bit too human in his hesi­ta­tion to wait for Kaylin’s next move. Night­shade, on the other hand, seems to wait in antic­i­pa­tion of Kaylin pushing him just a bit too far for answers — even in all his icy anger, I have an impres­sion of him passion­ately losing control because of Kaylin’s very human emotion — I think she could be the very thing to give color to his some­what long and restrained exis­tence! I would love to see a lot of scenes involving Kaylin and Night­shade one-on-one in Cast in Sorrow — can’t wait for next fall (when hope­fully it will be published). I can’t believe the schedule you keep — your writing skills and dedi­ca­tion arefan­tastic! I hope writing Sorrow comes as easily to you as reading Peril came to me — best of luck and please, please, don’t have Kaylin be content to grow old with mortal Severn when she could be her wondrous and unusual self with Nightshade.
    Team Night­shade all the way!!

  41. I think he was saying that the Consort was like a daughter to him and then he checked with Kaylin to make certain he had the correct term.

  42. Stephanie says:

    Loved it! I love every­thing you write. Hope there is more inter­ac­tion with Night­shade in Sorrow. Love that glass dragon and can’t wait to see what you create next. My only complaint is that I have to wait a year to find out. Now I’m looking forward to Jan for Battle. Thanks for writing such amazing stories! I don’t think I have ever re-read any book as much as yours. What an remark­able mind you have.

  43. Chris says:

    In real life, men who “passion­ately lose control” often end up dead or in jail, and that’s a good thing. The rest of us don’t exist to keep them entertained. 

    Kaylin is her own person who didn’t deserve to be marked, has her own life, and is in no way oblig­ated to care what Night­shade wants. 

    Your post has done a great job of reminding me how evil he is. Hope­fully Night­shade will wind up dead soon and Kaylin can be free to be with someone who actu­ally cares about her, whether that’s Severn or just about anyone else.

  44. Annah says:

    Sir, I do believe you just went rabid Twilight-like fan on us! :) But really, I don’t mean any disrespect…but it is just a book. A wonderful, fantastic, amaz­ingly written and plotted book, but still just a book. Your response was a little intense…

    We all have our pref­er­ences, but I’m sure Mrs. Sagara will make a fine deci­sion, in the end. Have a good night and happy reading!

    Anyways, I’m very excited to read Peril and person­ally cannot wait to devour the deli­cious­ness that is Michelle Sagara’s bril­liant new book! I’m still waiting for it to come to my book­store, but oh well, that’s life.

  45. Chris says:

    It’s an intense topic, as far as I can see. We’re discussing a book, yes. But some people are really roman­ti­cizing the exact sort of person­ality and mind-set that directly leads to child abuse and domestic violence. I don’t under­stand that. There’s a direct cause-and-effect there, Do the propo­nents think that there’s not? Or that such things are “cool”? I defi­nitely don’t understand. 

    I agree with the rest of what you say though. Good night.

  46. Susan E says:

    I sympa­thize but I have less problem with the being in love with a 13 year old as that is a modern cultural conven­tion. My great aunt ran away and got married with her 17-year-old boyfriend when she was 13 and that part wasn’t bizarre in the early 20th century even though it very much is now. Loretta Lynn is another example that comes to mind. and on my other side, my grand­mother copied a piece of a journal of one of her Ohio rela­tives (mid to late 1900s) where the girl describes making a pie and going to the pie fest for the first time at 13 and the thrill of being selected by a young man in her first year to be taken as his wife and take west with him and it didn’t seem like the parents had a will he/nill he about it.. 

    In England, as I under­tand (perhaps incor­rectly, the most recent context was one of the mysteries about the DCI Vera), the “age of consent” is 14 so stat­u­a­tory rape doesn’t exist as we know it. There are many cult groups like the Hare Krishna in Virginia, and other ethnic groups where 13 is consid­ered grown up, including the tradi­tional Hmong of whom we have many in Minnesota. It is viewed as a major problem by social services but not among them­selves partic­u­larly (some­times it is by the young girls who are trapped at 13).

  47. Susan E says:

    I had found myself wondering if Iber­rion hadn’t demol­ished his true name by his magic to craft greater power and a “new” set of words from the soul stuff of the humans that was so anti-nature. But then I also wonder who the “two” were who the Bert­hole’s brothers said were with the group but were nameless?

  48. Susan E says:

    I gener­ally agree with your first state­ment. I believe he marked her because when he met her in the past/future she was so marked so he knew it was “neces­sary” if not why. I think we are seeing now why he clung to her hope when he met there and took over the bleak fife while he waited, namely to bring about the redemp­tion in the regalia for his people and those he cared about way back then not so much as a stalker/obsessive lover that some readers seem to like him for. 

    Of course he is so arro­gant (what we used to call guys with a “god’s gift” complex) and has his race’s prej­u­dices about the infe­ri­ority of humans that he can’t help but try to manip­u­late her into complying with his agenda. I don’t think he is any more “evil” than any of the other of his race we have seen and prob­ably less than some. despotic, yeah. I don’t think it ever occurred to him to consider the well being of the humans who clung to life like rats in his fife until the constant chal­lenge to his assump­tions that Kaylin has presented.

    I don’t think the mark has anything to do with Kaylin being “free to be with someone who actu­ally cares about her”, it was again made clear in this book that it isn’t being torn between people roman­ti­cally nor not being free to choose but it is the deep seated trauma of her past that is the barrier to her seeking human comfort in her deep friend­ship with Severn.

  49. Susan E says:

    My percep­tion of the char­acter devel­op­ment in Peril is it has also revealed if Night­shade has a “true love” it is The Consort. But reso­lu­tion of living happily ever after together isn’t rele­vant to Barrani

  50. mary Allen says:


    Loved Peril. Any chance you will do another short story of Kaylin’s early life with the Hawks. I had good luck paying for the book and having it shipped on release date. B&N deliv­ered late Thursday. Finished Friday night and enjoyed it but am sorry it is going to be a year before another install­ment. I may go back and re-read all the Huntbrother/Sun Sword before Battle comes out. I am wearing out my copies of the cast books and will re-read every­thing again before Sorrow comes out. I was inter­ested in the rela­tion­ship between the Lord of the West March and Hallionne Orbaranne. I’m currious where you come up with such inter­sting names. Really looking forward to Kaylin helping Teela.

  51. dcm says:

    I don’t condne violence — when I said “lose control” I meant of his emotions and not in an act of aggres­sion — Kaylin is good for him. Even if he is immortal he can still learn some real truths from Kaylin’s mortality. The books give an impres­sion that there is always more to Kaylin than meets the eye — she may not even be truly mortal herself — she seems to be a changeling even to her own people.

  52. shauntel says:

    Yes, the book is fantasy so is not condoning anything. It is the way the world is in the book. Remember the worst abuse Kaylen actu­ally had was at the hand of Barren, who is all the way human. Some of the Immortal races consider the human’s intel­le­gent animals, and dispos­able. Which sucks, but brings it into perspective.

    As far as the possible love interest so far (Night­Shade, Severn) I like them both (although I would prefer Night­shade) both of them have good pooints. Severn has hidden secrets that will prob­ably come out in further books, she’s taken every­thing from kaylins point of view; her inter­ac­tions with the each. 

    I’m sure we will see more depth from Severen. How I’m reading him is he one of the best Wolf’s there is (Assassin) remember he has been one for years. He has learned how to hide himself I can’t wait to find out more about him. Remember Teela has an impres­sion that he is dangerous. Every fight he has fought with skill and lived where others have died, and still manages to protect kaylin. The bracer also went to him (protector) from the hawkloard.

    Well I’ll get off this topic for now. Great great book:) Want more:)))))

  53. a.esther says:


    I’m in agree­ment with your thoughts surrounding the issue of Night­shade’s name in CiP..and you put it into words much better than I could! Anyone else wondering about this should defi­nitely read your post, although it would be nice if Ms.Sagara posted for clar­i­fi­ca­tion as well :D

    This book was espe­cially wonderful to me because it left the bound­aries of the City; we got new terrain, completely new characters/features (LOVE the Halliones), but I espe­cially love the little bits of infor­ma­tion left here and there, like a path of crumbs left by Hansel & Grettl. The Consort using Night­shade’s name brings up the ques­tion of why he changed it to ‘Night­shade’ (which I’ve always wondered at, because it doesn’t sound like a normal Barrani name); the comment about Severn’s mind being silent gener­ates further curiosity about his immortal teacher, which makes Severn more inter­esting to me than he previ­ously was; etc.

    I really loved the inter­play between char­ac­ters in this book, as it brought out aspects of person­ality we have not seen – or seen only glimpses of before. Kaylin’s night with Teela was espe­cially insightful, and the discovery that Night­shade is selling his citi­zens makes his rela­tion­ship with Kaylin espe­cially unique. I know a lot of people are in favor of either Night­shade OR Severn, but my personaly theory is that our favority author is too orig­inal and unique to make Kaylin simply “pick” one or the other. They are two very different people, and manage to meet some of Kaylin’s very different – some­times conflicting – needs. I think Kaylin perhaps can learn from both, and accept different things from each of them (whether or not they can live with that is another thing entirely). And seeing how her Familiar clearly favors Severn over Night­shade, I wonder how that will affect things. Need­less to say, the conver­sa­tions and inter­ac­tions between Kaylin and her two suitors (for lack of a better term) have made me eager to see how Cast in Sorrow continues to play out the situ­a­tion. Until then I will be re-reading CiP numerous times to see what new angles and insights I can squeeze from between the lines.

    Thank you again for such a wonderful series!

  54. a.esther says:

    My studies in social history take away the ‘ick’ factor for the whole 13/18 thing, but I agree with you about Severn being not as inter­esting. I do thinkt he last two books have brought more insight into his char­acter, though, and maybe the view of him not having ‘flaws’ is one of percep­tion? He told Kaylin in a pervious book, when she was facing the Devourer, that he loved her because she made every place she went a Home, that she lives in the moment, and that he wants that too. So although he kept them alive in the fiefs and excelled in his career, perhaps the lack of hobbies and lack of “home” are his flaws. As for him saving the world, he did say that wasn’t why he killed the chil­dren; he didn’t want to lose Kaylin, so I suppose self­ish­ness could be a factor. 

    In some ways (and I know this is prob­ably violating some firm convic­tions for Team Severn/Nightshade folks), Severn and Night­shade are very similar to me. They are devoted to their own inster­ests, offer little upfront the way Kaylin does, both very dangerous men..If Severn were immortal, or Night­shade mortal, I think the simi­lar­i­ties would be even more obvious.

  55. a.esther says:


    I love your theory of the connec­tion between ‘hope’ and Kaylin’s Barrani name! It makes a lot of sense, and would really tie things together.

  56. a.esther says:

    I agree that the Hallione was reffering to the Concort, and i think earlier int he book (don’t have it on me or I’d check) I believe there was another refer­ence to the Barrani being ‘chil­dren’ and specif­i­cally the Lady being a ‘daughter.’

  57. Crystal says:

    I love the books. I read them so fast that I’m gnawing on my finger­nails until the next one arrives. And this one, this one was awesome, I just wish it was longer. Or the next came sooner. Keep up the delightful work, I love your books!

  58. Kathy Scappace says:

    First I want to touch on Ms. Sagara’s prob­lems with Touch. I think part of the problem is the way Silence ended. Meeting up with Nathan at the end of the book kind of puts a stall on the storyline.

    Second, I found a blooper in Peril. When Kaylin and Belusdeo arrive at the Palace with Sana­balis he refers to Kaylin as Corporal. That is the only time in the whole book she is referred to by that rank. 

    Third, and for me this is some­thing of a burning question/issue, the name Severn Handred is also an anagram for hard­ened nerves and I’ve always seen him as someone with extra­or­di­nary self control. I’ve also always wondered (a) if he was actu­ally human, and (b) who his father was. In Shadows we learned that Severn actu­ally committed himself to Kaylin when he was 10 and she was 5! He appeared out of nowhere at that time and had a conver­sa­tion with Kaylin’s mother after which he remained constantly at Kaylin’s side. I have to feel there is more to this story than we know and that the reso­lu­tion of it will cause a major read­just­ment in Kaylin’s life.

    Last, I’ve never seen anything in the Kaylin/Nightshade rela­tion­ship that inclined me to feel there was a possi­bility for a future for them. Lord Andellan is another matter. That is the inter­ac­tion I watch most closely.

    Like everyone else I am extremely eager to read Sorrow but on the other hand I kind of fear what the sorrow will be. I can’t help feeling Kaylin will lose someone very close to her in that book.

  59. Meagan says:

    There are always going to be bloopers no matter how many eyes scan the book and no matter how many times it is read :) I noticed several and I am not mentioning most of them because I know there is always going to be at least one mistake and I, person­ally, hate pointing them out unless I am actively confused or it’s some­thing like a name spelling change, As for that one…I am fairly certain he is not refer­ring to Kaylin as the Corporal. He calls her Private right before that and says he and Bellusdo will escort her. I have no idea ‑who- is/was being referred to a Corporal, but I don’t think it was meant to be Kaylin.

  60. shauntel says:

    I think I found it page 482 is where Kaylin is facing Lord iber­rion. She states that both signa­ture’s that she saw on the bomb was his!! yeah! It states that possible he wasn’t lord Iber­rion or could he be both trav­elers that didn’t have a name.

    It answers some ques­tions, but opens others.

  61. Annah says:

    I see your point now. At first I thought it was a little bit of an over­re­ac­tion, but your last comment made your intent infi­nitely more clear, and I agree! However, I do still adore Night­shade because he’s an enter­taining character.

  62. Kate says:

    I agree with you about Severn. I also don’t under­stand why people like her with Nightshade…he stands for every­thing that she is against.

  63. Jen says:

    I don’t know about getting much more depth with Severn. I kept thinking that, too, but we’re 8 books in, y’know? At this point I expect more than hints and cryptic clues. That’s why I find him so dull – after Court­light his story arc got linked so tightly to Kaylin that he seems to have no inde­pen­dent existence.
    Someone else commented that he’s too perfect. I agree in the sense that he’s always perfectly supportive, and he never ques­tions Kaylin’s big deci­sions. He may dispute her on a point of etiquette, or want her to take fewer risks, but he trusts her judg­ment. This is great, but it’s also predictable. Can you imagine him telling her not to save someone, or trying to stop her from inves­ti­gating some­thing dangerous and illegal? No, I can’t either.
    In theory, he’s the perfect boyfriend. On the page, he comes off as too good to be true, or dramat­i­cally inter­esting. All that tension and conflict and drama that you need to keep a rela­tion­ship inter­esting for hundreds of pages has been removed. He would be lovely to come home to IRL. Reading about him and Kaylin, though, is as bland as unsea­soned oatmeal.
    There’s even some­thing slightly creepy about him. Not that he loved her when she was barely adoles­cent. I always assumed his love wasn’t partic­u­larly sexual at that point – she was too young. After all, she used to sleep in the same bed but he wasn’t distracted by it until recently.
    The creep factor comes because they are so close. He prac­ti­cally raised her. His spying on her while she was a hawk and he a wolf is a bit unset­tling, too. Now he’s her partner, confi­dante, best friend, and would-be lover all rolled into one. He’s wearing too many hats in her life. It’s like they’re already married except for the sex. Or he’s her brother (except that he’s closer than any brother). It’s just – odd – and maybe not completely healthy for either of them.

  64. JCeleste says:

    I have to say that this thread is so awesome! I love all my fellow die-hard CAST fans! Where do we go to start our own fan fiction forum where we can attempt to fill our days (after re-reading the entire series twelve or thir­teen more times between now and the next book – joke) or after the tension with what I consider a Need-Triangle with the Severn-Kaylin-Night­shade thing gets on our nerves so much we drive everyone else crazy? 

    I liter­ally broke into sobs for three hours when I discov­ered I couldn’t get my copy on the 18th. I tore Amazon​.com apart for promising me a book that would arrive a whole 24 HOURS later. I was like “I have been waiting for a YEAR for this book, and I have liter­ally been counting down the hours for the past week, and you want me to wait ONE MORE MINUTE?” I felt bad after­wards; to a logical person, getting that upset is ridicu­lous. What is the harm in waiting another day if you’ve waited a year? 

    But I just adore Michelle’s work. And as a writer, oh, my gosh, did anyone notice this book is OVER FIVE HUNDRED PAGES? Do you know how much work goes into that? I’m amazed it only took a year. Though, as a reader, I was like “What! Why couldn’t this be a thou­sand pages and then we could have seen the whole dynamic of the Teller and Harmoniste play out?” And as the reader, I was counting down to the big show­down between Night­shade and Kaylin, and it got post­poned because of the name­less familiar always nipping at him.

    I like Night­shade for the romantic aspect, but Severn is like an appendage and if Kaylin does anything romantic with Night­shade, her rela­tion­ship with Severn is ruined forever, isn’t it? And if she does anything romantic with Severn, I have no doubt that Night­shade would murder him without a blink, so I really don’t see how anything but a asexual-romantic-tension rela­tion­ship is possible with either of them. And as much as I would LOVE to harrass the writer about it, and demand she give us some kind of indi­ca­tion of where this is all going (I mean, this is the ninth book, and we’ve had one kissing scene and a whole lot of “Oh, I want to but I don’t”) but as a fellow writer, again, I under­stand. For all we know, Michelle herself doesn’t know what will happen with the char­ac­ters yet. It’s prob­ably like they’re alive and she’s just chasing after them with a pen in hand, trying to capture their story and trans­late this immense and fabu­lous world into some­thing we can hold in our hand.

    And her writing is so fantastic, I have no problem reading another nine or ten books. I’ll just write my own scenarios, which brings me back to fan fiction, None of it will come even remotely close to her work, but I think it would be a lot of fun for us to read out what other people see as options. I mean, with the rate of the char­ac­ters devel­op­ment (which is, at the least and grate­fully, quite real for someone who has been subjected to the horrors of her past) it could truly be another three or four books before we get some semblance of a choice — if a choice ever can be made between the two.

    (Michelle, if you’re reading this, you are totally my hero! I hope to thank you in person one day, when I publish my own stories on a similar scale.)

  65. a.esther says:

    It’s so cool to see other people as excited as I am about this series! It reminds me of Robert Jordan fans, with all of the webpages for discus­sions, theo­ries, role­playing, fanart, even some sites for finding people in your area to talk with in person over a cup of coffee/etc…We defi­nitely need one of those!

  66. shauntel says:

    Remember as far as not knowing much about Severn, in the book searies it has barely been a year since they reunited. We may have been reading for a while, but it has been only an intense year with one major problem after another. We haven’t had time for Severn’s life. 

    I know I’m playing devil’s advo­cate for some, but I bet it’s awsome. I don’t see him as a appendage, I see him as her protector. He’s 26 now and she is 21 right now and he’s trying to go slow because of her dislike of inta­macy, it was hinted in the book when she stayed with him in the first way station that barren wasn’t the only one who hurt her. You can see that he is becoming frus­trated, but hey folks a year isn’t that long when she is so clue­less about her own feelings.

    I also like night­shade as the romantic interest. (but i really really like Severn)

    I am wandering if Severn’s mother is a fief lord, because when talking about the fiefs with Lord Night­shade remember that one of his borders is with a female human?? Hmmmm

  67. Kate says:

    how about archive­o­fourown for fanfic?

  68. sara volk de garcia says:

    It sounded to me like Ms. Sagara had orig­i­nally planned for Severn to be there, but re-wrote it and missed removing the line. That’s what I thought when I read it.

  69. Meagan says:

    That’s one of the possi­bil­i­ties I consid­ered, but the reply to that state­ment didn’t sound like some­thing Severn would say so I thought perhaps another ranking Hawk instead.

  70. JCeleste says:

    Done! archiveso​fourown​.word​press​.com is launched. I will build it better later, and as we discuss it more.

    Love your idea, a.esther!

    Looking forward to every­one’s fan fic — imagine Megan’s… and did someone mention Kaylin and Andellan? :)

  71. Bobbie Kirkland says:

    I’d first like to qualify this by saying that I haven’t yet read Peril. I’m an e‑booker and the local book­store has informed me that they will not be getting any copies.

    I don’t partic­u­larly care for Night­shade as a romantic interest. They are too different. Further, I don’t think that Night­shade is truly inter­ested in Kaylin emotion­ally or sexu­ally. His interest is more moti­vated by the power “acquiring” her would give him. He’s completely self-inter­ested and amoral. Though he is often amused by Kaylin’s igno­rance, he doesn’t hesi­tate to take advan­tage of it. As we are limited by Kaylin’s knowl­edge in this series, we have yet to fully realize the impli­ca­tions or meaning of Erenne. Kaylin ha a history of strug­gling with morality, but she now has a clear vision of who she wants to be and what she believes in, so, in a romantic rela­tion­ship between the two, one would have to be crushed and recon­structed to the will of the other.

    As for Severen, I like him a lot better, but I’m not sure Kaylin is ready for a sexual rela­tion­ship. Our knowl­edge of Severen is, once again, limited by what Kaylin knows. He is pretty much, to her, her shadow, her support, her good example, her protector, and the one person who has always had her safety and best inter­ests at heart. However, since I have been unable to read Peril yet, I don’t know how her under­standing of Severen changes in the latest story. Before then, however, Kaylin didn’t really see Severen as anything more than a father/older brother figure. She never both­ered to learn anything about his life sepa­rate from her. In short, we haven’t learned about Severen because Kaylin was not inter­ested in learning more about him.

    As for other love inter­ests. Kaylin seems to have a rapport of some sort with most powerful males, espe­cially dragons. The primary inter­ac­tors in her life are male and she is defined by those rela­tion­ships. Most of those rela­tion­ships seem avun­cular though some of them have surprising over­tones. Look closely at the inter­ac­tions with the Hawk­lord and Tiamaris, those may be more subtle than those with Severan and Night­shade, but they still have some sizzle. I’m not sure if Lord Andellen is a viable candi­date because of his devo­tion and loyalty to Nighshade.

    Exept for Kaylin’s adopted daugh­ters and prob­ably because of their murder, the female inter­ac­tions in Kaylin’s life are mostly posi­tive but completely periph­eral, Yebelline, Marrin, Marcus’s pridlea, the Consort, the midwives, even Teela ( though at least one inter­ac­tion between Teela and Kaylin leads me to believe that Teela may have made a pass at Kaylin on one or more occa­sion). Before Peril, and in the first chapter of Peril, Kaylin’s room­mate Belusdeo is even more or less flat — some­thing to be toler­ated and endured rather than fully expe­ri­enced. Though Kaylin may interact with Tara, Tara is still periph­eral to Kaylin’s rela­tion­ship with Tiamaris. Thus, we don’t really get to see Kaylin as a fully fleshed woman. She sees herself as an adult Hawk and servant of the Emperor, but she has yet to realize that she is also a fully adult woman. (Though she has a deter­mined interest in the welfare of chil­dren, she has had this interest since her child­hood. She hasn’t yet real­ized that, one day, she could have her own children.)

    So, in conclu­sion, until Kaylin is ready to realize that she is, in fact, a woman and deal with the events and fallout that stunted this real­iza­tion, I don’t think she’ll be ready for a romantic rela­tion­ship. As fast-paced as these books are, I don’t foresee an oppor­tu­nity to deal with those issues unless one of her adven­tures involves the need to solve her emotional prob­lems or ends with an impe­rial order that she add therapy to her class schedule.

    However, I’m happy that sex has not yet been intro­duced into the series because, once it is, it’ll either become dull because she’ll then be limited through monogamy and resul­tant tire­some jeal­ousy on her part­ner’s behalf because of all the other men in her life or it’ll become awkward and possibly nasty because pages will be wasted to describing her bed-hopping.

  72. Jen says:

    But we have had time for Tiamaris’s life and Night­shade’s life and even the Consort’s life. Tiamaris and Night­shade, in partic­ular, have had signif­i­cant char­acter devel­op­ment. Since their pres­ence in any given book is rela­tively small, this is striking. Severn is omnipresent but he gets very little story. There’s a discon­nect between the time he’s on the page (30 – 60% of the book) and the amount of plot he’s given (>5%). I think that’s why he feels extremely under­de­vel­oped to me. 

    It’s not that I dislike Severn. It seems like Kaylin loves and trusts him, he’s always supportive, and Sagara seems to be moving their rela­tion­ship toward some­thing more serious. It’s that I want their romantic rela­tion­ship to be exciting and enjoy­able, and it’s not. The story gets much more exciting when she’s with other characters. 

    I’ve been trying to pinpoint why. That’s what I came up with. I wish it weren’t so, because unless Sagara is gaslighting us, Kaylin appears to be moving inex­orably toward a rela­tion­ship with Severn. If this had happened in books 3 or 4, I would have been pretty happy (though I had a soft spot for Night­shade, too). The drama of her forgiving him for killing the chil­dren, and him learning to live with it, was arresting. But that was 4 – 5 books ago, and he hasn’t had his own story arc since. Without his own story­lines, Severn becomes less compelling, and his romance with Kaylin less interesting. 

    This neglect makes it hard to enjoy their romance. It all feels very forced. They have awkward conver­sa­tions about sex (three in the last two books) and don’t even kiss! There’s nothing sexy about that. I love these books, and I’m trying to like where this is going, but none of this feels romantic. 

    Bizarrely, her inter­ac­tions with Night­shade ARE sexy and even romantic, although she hates him and what he stands for. She’s kissed him (twice!) and they don’t have awkward conver­sa­tions about it, either. It’s a very different dynamic than what she has with Severn, and it works better as a romance. Except for the whole – he’s an unre­pen­tant villain who might kill her – part of their inter­ac­tions, they work a lot better roman­ti­cally than Kaylin and Severn. Some­times it makes me want to because I don’t get it. Why make Severn so boring and asexual if he’s the one? Why give her inter­ac­tions with Night­shade so much fire if he’s a villain? 

    I love the story and world-building, and Kaylin is someone I adore, but the romantic entan­gle­ments confuse me. Sagara has made some char­ac­ter­i­za­tion choices I don’t fully understand. 

    I distract myself with the fasci­nating cast of other char­ac­ters. The Barrani, despite being right bastards, are always fasci­nating. Like elves, but with a Darwinian “survival of the fittest” emphasis. There’s no frol­icking in the forest for these guys – it’s all back­stab­bing and power plays. I love it. Anyone else notice the singing – just like Tolkien’s elves. I LOLed when Kaylin had to sing to help the Consort, since she hates the sound of her own voice. 

    I wish Bellusdeo had come along on this trip. But with Kaylin, Teela, and the Consort, Bellusdeo prob­ably would have been one alpha female too many. I’m still puzzled by the glass dragon. It seems to be uniformly on Kaylin’s side, so why would it pose a danger to her if unnamed? My current theory is that the dragon over­re­acts to anything it finds threat­ening – from Night­shade, to the water dragon/Hallionne, to the Ferals. Some­times it really should respond by trying to kill what­ev­er’s attacking (the Ferals), but other times its reac­tions are exces­sive (trying to kill the Hallionne or Night­shade). Until Kaylin names it, she can’t control its overreactions.

    There were a great many unan­swered ques­tions in this book. Terrano, the nature of the regalia, the Arcan­ist’s objec­tive, what Night­shade hopes for, the Consort’s agenda – Cast in Sorrow can’t come soon enough.

  73. Jen says:

    One phrase was omitted by the discus­sion soft­ware (that’ll teach me not to use special char­ac­ters). It’s kind of a signif­i­cant phrase: “Some­times it makes me want to HEAD DESK because I don’t get it.” Sorry.

  74. Genna Warner says:

    I love the book but this one just didn’t sit right with me as a Cast novel. And reading all the comments here, it dawned on me. This doesn’t feel like a completed story. Yes, she solved the case of who was taking the people out of the fiefs, who tried to assi­nate Belladeuso and Kaylin and what was in the Egg. It got us most of the way to the West March. But there are too many plot lines left open that a normal Cast novel doesn’t. I really don’t mean to sound like I am complaining because I’m not. :) But to me this story line has the feel of a West novel and not a Sagara novel. And I want more!!!!! :) It’s going to be a long wait until Sorrow comes out.

    Too add to the Nightshade/Severn conver­sa­tion that is going on. I like the idea of Night­shade and Kaylin together. I think they both bring some­thing to table that balances out the other. With Severn and Kaylin, it is pretty much all onesided. With Night­shade there is conflict which make the rela­tion­ship inter­esting to read about. There was a sceen where he seemed almost human to me. But I also found the sceen with Severn inter­esting that he is willing to wait for her but not forever.

  75. Kate says:

    IIRC, Michelle has mentioned plans for a shadow wolves book…I am assuming that that will contain signif­i­cant devel­op­ment of Severn.

  76. Kate says:

    Excellent…now if I could just get people writing fanfic for the Toby Daye series… ;-)

  77. Jen says:

    Really? Now that would help to flesh out Severn’s char­acter. Where did you learn of this?

    I know she’s got 3 more books in her contract. Sorrow will be one, and I thought she planned one on the Aerians, so maybe the Shadow Wolves one will be the third. I guess we won’t get a “human” book. I would have liked to see one. While we and Kaylin are human, I get the feeling that the human caste court works a bit differ­ently than our govern­ments, so it would be inter­esting from a world-building perspec­tive. I get the sense they are petty, venal, and easily corrupted, which may explain why humans don’t get much respect in Elantra.

  78. Kate says:

    she posted about it ages ago…my memory is that it would be next after the West March. I’m not sure if that is still the plan since the comment was before it became clear that there would be 2 West March books.

  79. Kirsten says:


  80. Winc says:

    Iber­rion’s Double Signa­ture = Yes this is an inter­esting issue

    My take on this is that Kaylin is the only one who can see the second signa­ture due to her being Chosen. Her magic is based on the original/Ancient system of Names. 

    When re-reading the section on the Hallions, I was reminded that the Hallion’s were created to battle or protect similar to the towers. The differ­ence being they were created to battle a different enemy. Some­thing created by another Lord of Chaos. Some­thing I believe is similar to Shadows but not the existing Shadows that we have previ­ously been battling in Revelon.

    My point here is that the previous books have mostly focused on what we and Kaylin referred to as Shadows that are in Revelon. What if Iber­rion was possessed or will­ingly in a deal with a new (to us) enemy? An enemy that did not take away Iber­rion’s True Name but is using his body as a host so they can move around unde­tected during the trip through the Hallions.


  81. Winc says:

    I wouldn’t say that Night­shade’s “true love” was the Consort.
    Night­shade was a contem­pory of the previous High Lord.
    In other words, Night­shade was a friend/ally to the current Consort’s father.
    He can be seen as the favorite uncle.

    When he was “outcasted” the situ­a­tion was never explained to the Consort if what she said is the truth. So she still have feel­ings for Night­shade but due to poli­tics she has to treat him as an outcaste in any normal situation.

    My take on their rela­tion­ship was that the Consort had a crush on Nightshade.


  82. a.esther says:

    About the possi­bility of Kaylin having been hurt by more than just Barren in the past: I thought the same thing when I read that passage but was surprised that was the first mention of it. I believe you refer to this-(pg.206)
    …“But he’s there, between us.” (Severn)
    “Yes. It’s not just Barren.” (Kaylin)
    “No. If I can ask one thing of you tonight, please don’t mentiont heir names.”(S)…

    But then a short while later, when she is spending the night with Teela and they’re sharing child­hood memo­ries, on pg.261, Kaylin says, “She thought of Severn, in the dark­ness. She had promised that she wouldn’t mention Steffi or Jade…”

    So I think the “other thing” between them is his killing of the girls. Even though Kaylin has forgiven him, that doesn’t mean she hasn’t forgotten or that all emotions linked to the situ­a­tion have dissi­pated. If it’s diffi­cult for her to be roman­ti­cally involved with anyone given Barren’s abuse of her, imagine how much more diffi­cult to be roman­ti­cally involved with someone who hurt her on an even deeper level. So I think it’s impor­tant, too, to remember the dura­tion of time in the series for the char­ac­ters, as it puts things into perspective.

    …that being said, I agree than other char­ac­ters (*ahem* Night­shade!) have been much more devel­oped. And while Severn has poten­tial to be very inter­esting, well…c’mon my fellow warm-blooded humans, how can you deny that primal phys­ical reac­tion to someone?( i.e. the reac­tions Kaylin has to Nightshade)

  83. Kate says:

    I have made the same comments as you elsewhere…I volun­teer with a DV/ rape crisis center and it frus­trates me to see those types of behav­iors approved/encouraged.

  84. Jen says:

    Thank heaven someone else noticed Kaylin’s reac­tion to Night­shade! I was begin­ning to think I imag­ined it because no one else mentioned it! From the moment she met Night­shade, Kaylin has been phys­i­cally attracted to him. It’s really glaring.

    She never names what she’s feeling to herself, but I don’t find that surprising. She has a history of sexual abuse, and Night­shade is the last person she’d ever want to lust after. She finally admitted to Severn that she has some attrac­tion for Night­shade in Ruin. After their kiss in Chaos, even Kaylin could no longer bury her head in the sand completely. But in this book she never seems recog­nize her desire when it occurs. 

    She’ll notice he has a powerful, deep voice and it makes her want to cry, but she doesn’t connect that in any way to her own feel­ings or desires. He laughs with Andellen and she is acutely aware of it, but doesn’t notice her own response. She’s so clue­less that I’ve started to regard it as a game: what will Kaylin notice about Night­shade this time, without admit­ting she’s attracted to him? 

    I also agree that the other obstacle between Kaylin and Severn isn’t another abuser, but Severn’s killing of the girls. I hope there wasn’t another rapist; one is more than enough. 

    Severn is being patient; I hope he real­izes that it’s only been a few months since Kaylin finally faced the rape. It was so awful she repressed it for a long time. There were hints in earlier books – one partic­u­larly telling comment was that if she started to think about some­thing she would start screaming and never stop. I don’t remember which book, but I remember being very unset­tled when I read it, and when her past came out later I finally under­stood this cryptic comment. One of the things I love about the series is how lines that seem like throw-aways at the time later turn out to mean much more than we thought. Severn can’t expect Kaylin to process the rape overnight and magi­cally become normal. The rape was her first sexual expe­ri­ence (as far as we know) and she hasn’t had any others except that one, disas­trous attempt with her fellow Hawk a few years back. So she doesn’t have any normal to return to. 

    The short time span of the books is hard to keep in mind when we’re reading them over years. Hope­fully, there will be time for more devel­op­ment of Severn’s char­acter. The shadow wolf book Kate mentioned would be an excel­lent place to finally reveal Severn’s past, instead of just hinting at it.

  85. Natalie says:

    First of all, fan hopes notwith­standing, it’s pretty clear Night­shade is not going to lose control. He’s demon­strated self control many times, counter to his own desires, which is much more than is expected of an evil Barrani. 

    Second, it’s pretty clear that while Night­shade is more cunning and willing to break rules than other Barrani, the things he has done are either completely in line with his entire race (in regards to views on mortals) or against what any of his race would do in a way that is posi­tive. He’s not evil — far from it. He is willing to do “evil” things (again, things almost any of his race would do, yet I see fewer people condemning the Barrani as a whole) for some greater purpose we have not seen, but he has saved Kaylin’s life time and again in ways no other char­acter — human or other­wise- could have done. He has admitted that she could be a danger to him, some­thing few other immor­tals would tolerate, and yet he works to preserve her life and has done so for centuries.

    His mark, no matter how much you or even Kaylin may resent it, is a sign of protec­tion that has done nothing more than that, court scandal aside. Him “forcing” the mark on Kaylin is certainly no worse than Severn “forcing” his own deci­sions for Kaylin on her… like when he killed Steffi and Jade. Or any number of other times he stepped in for her sake when she didn’t want it. 

    I’m not crit­i­cizing Severn, I’m simply reminding that he has done awful things for his own reasons, even if they saved the world. And Night­shade implied he had no choice but to sell his own citi­zens, and we do not yet know the full scheme of things. 

    Dislike him all you want, but don’t ignore all the writing and complex char­ac­ter­i­za­tion that has gone into him. Labeling him as “evil” defines a pretty shallow opinion.

  86. a.esther says:

    i agree with Winc. i think that although Night­shade may have respect/admiration for the Consort, any affec­tion is all on her side. the only time Kaylin notices N having true affec­tion for anyone is during the conver­sta­tion she had concerning Terano.

  87. a.esther says:

    glad someone finally laid that out. none of Michelle Sagara’s char­ac­ters can be simply labeled as “good” or “evil” – or any other single term. this is what makes them all so inter­esting in the first place; refusing to look past surface actions wastes the author’s talent and makes some of these discus­sion threads pointless.

  88. a.esther says:

    I’m not sure that she’s unaware of her attrac­tion of Night­shade. I thought so at first, but not after the kiss scene or her conver­sa­tion with Severn about Night­shade (can’t remember which book, but i think they were on the bridge). It seems to me that she is aware of her reac­tions to him but is delib­er­ately pushing them aside in favor of more pressing matters (i.e. end of the world type stuff). She’s prob­ably hoping she can continue to ignore her emotions (maybe until after the end of the world, lol), as if her habit, But i’m sure the story­line will force the issue even­tu­ally; there’s no point in all of this if it doesn’t. Anyway, I’m infer­ring Kaylin’s delib­erate avoid­ance from some of her internal dialogue and observations..for example, in a conver­sa­tion with Night­shade (i thiiink it was in Peril, can’t remember) she says that she “ignores his comment, and his smile – and the seconed was harder.” 

    Given the abuse she’s suffered, this isn’t surprising – not only to feel highly uncom­fort­able with feelings/emotions which can be asso­ci­ated with her previous trauma, but I get the impres­sion that this is the first time in her life she has actu­ally had any kind of lustful phys­ical reac­tion to another being – and there was never anyone there to tell her what to expect, and how to procede (let alone with an Outcaste Barrani Lord!). The combi­na­tion of these would be a lot for anyone to take in, and she has an espe­cially full plate.

    I was really hoping that Peril would bring up more of this – and it did, although some­what obliquely (damn that cute little lizard, anyway) – but we’ll have to wait another year with fingers crossed for some reso­lu­tion. The triangle between K/S/N creates some great suspense/drama, but if it goes on for another few books like this I’m afraid it will become boring (and I’d be disap­pointed, as Kaylin gener­ally faces the things she’s afraid of sooner rather than later).

  89. Natalie says:

    This sums up my feel­ings and views on a Kaylin/Severn romance almost exactly. While I do think Severn has a cool back­story some­where (appar­ently we may find out about him and that Barrani Lord he learned from in the next book) he’d just… too still. Some­times he has even less reac­tion to things than a Barrani. I like him as a char­acter, I do, but he feels more like a supporting char­acter (quite liter­ally when it comes to Kaylin) instead of a main char­acter, even though he is one.

    As far as romance goes, it seems to me like this: 

    Severn is the safe choice in a way that sex between her and him would almost be a “best friends with bene­fits” sort of thing. He is a comfort zone, a safe place, and once she gets past her fear of inti­macy and child­hood trauma, that’s it. There is no upwards and onwards, no higher plateau, no more hurdles. Sex would be their pinnacle. If she gets past her feel­ings about Steffi and Jade and her trauma and sleeps with Severn, they like the perfect couples who absolutely make for a boring read.

    Night­shade, on the other hand, is the dangerous choice, because around him Kaylin’s feel­ings are not easily explained (to herself) or ignored. He chal­lenges her, defies her, chas­tises her, gets angry with her and pisses her off. Even so, he protects her, though he informs her repeat­edly that she serves his purpose. And yet, time and again, he hints (against his will, it seems) that his care for her is deeper than he’d like it to be and that there are qual­i­ties that he hides, because they are weak­nesses to Barrani. Kaylin is attracted most to these hidden things, those brief glimpses of the man she wants him to be. A rela­tion­ship on page is only inter­esting so long as there is more to learn and see, and it’s clear that Kaylin trusts her knowl­edge of Severn, while she is still trying to learn Night­shade. Any sex they’d have would not be the pinnacle of the rela­tion­ship, but a part of that learning — the explo­ration of that aspect of the characters. 

    Kaylin does have a strong dynamic with most males in the story. I enjoyed her inter­ac­tions with Andellen and Tiamaris (before he prac­ti­cally married the Tower, though I love Tara) and I can see how Kaylin might work with a variety of people. I don’t think she’s been pushed toward Severn more than Night­shade, or Night­shade more than Severn. I think at this point she is equally drawn to the different parts of each that she either finds comfort in or attrac­tion to. In the end, she may well end up without either, or even with someone else entirely. Truth­fully, I can see both of them being parted from her under sad circum­stances, because one will throw his life away for her and the other may reach his end in what­ever bigger picture he is involved in. 

    But hey, at least Kaylin has options. I feel kinda bad for Bellusdeo and Emmerian in a Beauty-and-the-Beast sort of way, except Bellusdeo seems much less given to Stock­holm Syndrome and it’s hard to picture Diarmat as a talking clock.

  90. shauntel says:

    I agree about every­thing said. Wine said about Night­shade and Severn.

    The reason the books are so good is that the world is not safe. The world is mixing many different races and their inter­ac­tions with each other. Some hate each other, some are non violent, some are immortal. 

    Its a great mix, there is so much going on. The Char­ac­ters are following their ideals of whats right or wrong for their race. Without the Emper­or’s law then the humans wouldn’t even be safe they would be enslaved, or killed as a whim of the magical or immortal.

  91. a.esther says:

    Good point about the whole pinnacle-of-the-real­tion­ship stuff. We’ve seen Kaylin grow and learn a lot about herself and the world, and I don’t think her person­ality is the type to just settle down in comfort. As of right now it certainly feels like there would be a giant ‘The End’ to the issue if she ends up with Severn; I just can’t picture sex between the two as anything more than comfort…kinda vanilla, and boring.

  92. Jen says:

    I had the same problem on the 18th. I went in because the copy I pre-ordered from Amazon was showing a “1 – 3 week delay” and I couldn’t bear to wait. Neither Barnes & Noble or Books-a-Million (the only new book­stores in my city) had a copy the day it was supposed to be released.
    But in Barnes & Noble’s defense, they DID have a copy by Thursday (Sep. 20), and I was able to check local avail­ability using the website, saving me from making multiple, unsuc­cessful trips to the bricks-and-mortar store. So I bought it Thursday night after work and devoured it. I’m glad I broke down and bought it – my copy from Amazon only arrived today!
    So in the war between Amazon and B&N, B&N won this round. I just wish it had been avail­able, anywhere, on the 18th as promised. It looks like it is trick­ling out now, but this certainly doesn’t make it easier for people to buy and enjoy Sagara’s work. Plus, it kind of crip­ples our discus­sions. I feel guilty posting spoilers when so many people might not have even been able to read it yet. How can we have a serious discus­sion of the book without talking about what happens in it, though?

  93. Liz says:

    Team Severn here. Like it’s written in Cast in Peril — Severn had her back, as always. In compar­ison, we have Lord Night­shade selling his people to Arcan­ists and not caring what’s done to them, and as Tara said, he is aware of the brothels in Night­shade and profits from them. That kind of arro­gant, calcu­lating, cruelty is not what Kaylin needs.

  94. Jen says:

    I really don’t see how Night­shade’s mindset leads to domestic violence and child abuse. Perpe­tra­tors of domestic abuse tend to be inse­cure people who take out their anger and resent­ment on those who can’t fight back. When stressed, they beat their spouses or chil­dren. They have prob­lems with inse­cu­rity and control. 

    Night­shade is a supremely confi­dent and controlled person. He has prob­lems with exces­sive arro­gance, not a sense of inad­e­quacy. If anything, he is overly controlled, concealing his emotions to an exces­sive degree. He rarely bothers to attack the weak because, as he tells Kaylin right out in Silence, it’s tedious to have to kill people all the time for minor offenses (rude­ness, in her case). 

    This is not to say he’s a great guy. His will­ing­ness to sacri­fice some people to save others, or accom­plish other, more impor­tant (to him) goals, is not admirable. But this is a POLITICAL failing, not a domestic one.

  95. Jennifer says:

    I thought it was answered in Cast in Chaos when Night­shade kissed Kaylin that he desired her sexu­ally, both through the name bond and through um phys­ical evidence

  96. Jennifer says:

    I was strongly team Night­shade and still wish he was the one for her, but as you pointed out, there seems to be a delib­erate move in the last book or two toward Severn and to make Night­shade’s self-interest and lack of human morality much more apparent. I had thought his inter­ac­tions with Kaylin were changing him. However I thought I caught that in Peril that those with true names CAN’T change. Not unless some­thing happens to change their name. Though I still have hopes that since Night­shade said he heard a regalia when he met Kaylin and she is changing those around her, that she can change him enough.

  97. a.esther says:

    inter­esting that you should see any poten­tial sexual rela­tion­ships for Kaylin as strictly mono­go­mous or “bed-hopping,” which has some rather nega­tive conno­ta­tions in our culture. the ethno­cen­trism here is a little ironic, given that we’re reading a sci-fi/fan­tasy series, don’t you think?

  98. Jen says:

    I’m for Kaylin with Night­shade, simply because I think it would be so much more inter­esting for me to read. Plus, I think Kaylin’s body would thank her after­ward (she is really attracted to him). 

    Yet I feel selfish writing this, because Severn feels safer for Kaylin, after Barren’s abuse. He would be perfect for her to get over her trauma – someone she trusts, someone who supports her 100%, who would be patient and kind. Yet, as Natalie pointed out, it also feels like a rela­tion­ship she might outgrow because Severn doesn’t feel like someone who’ll chal­lenge her. 

    Night­shade, on the other hand, would be an enor­mous chal­lenge. He is SO different from Kaylin, even without the ethical prob­lems, that in theory I don’t see how it could work. But then Michelle puts them in the same room together and suddenly I remember why I ship them – they are so exciting and so drawn to each other. 

    You can see that I’m confused, can’t you? I kept hoping that Sagara would shift the balance either way – make Severn more exciting or Night­shade less ethi­cally chal­lenged, and instead she upped the ante. She made Night­shade more amoral, and refused to let Severn kiss Kaylin, or make Kaylin more attracted to him. 

    Right now, neither is entirely satis­fying. And that may be the point, that it’s too early to wrap this up, and we still have a lot to learn about all three of them. She has certainly made the story more dramatic by refusing to come down solidly on the side of either love interest. After the first half of Peril I thought Severn was a defi­nite shoo-in, but after finishing the second half of the book I’m as clue­less as when I began it. There are so many clues that Night­shade is pursuing some larger agenda, some­thing that Kaylin might approve (saving wronged chil­dren is Kaylin’s personal passion). Kaylin is also awfully sympa­thetic to him, when by all rights she should still be furious. Her reac­tions suggest that Kaylin’s feel­ings are still torn between the two men. So the drama continues, which is good for the story, but not for my nerves!

  99. a.e says:

    I inferred from that ‘Regalia’ conver­sa­tion that Night­shade is one of the people being changed/tested by Kaylin/the story she is creating. I also wonder about his comment at the end of the first conver­sa­tion with Kaylin in Peril, when he says he would conform to Empirial Law (or some version thereof) as the High Halls have done, if it should become conve­nient to do so. Is that an impli­ca­tion that although his immortality/race are not condu­sive to him sharing Kaylin’s mortal concerns/values, he would change his behavior if it would please Kaylin? 

    In some of Kaylin’s conver­sa­tions with Teela we see that although she is a Hawk, and values that on some level, she is still very much Barrani and regards mortals in a similar way to the rest of her race. I was of the under­standing that she has come to value certain mortals (i.e.Kaylin) due to consis­tent expo­sure and basi­cally living in their world. And while she’s been around Kaylin for 7 years, Night­shade has had rela­tively little inter­ac­tion with her over the course of only one year. Even so, we’ve seen him change his behavior and his person­ality to some extent. 

    While this doesn’t excuse repre­hen­sible behavior…honestly, if I’d lived around humans for centuries I wouldn’t be much inclined to care either. Even living as one of them I am frequently disgusted; my morals are a lot better than Night­shade’s, of course, but given the culture he grew up in, I think he’s actu­ally doing pretty good. I’d even say there are a lot of mortals who would be – or are – much worse in behavior and thought. Selling his citi­zens defi­nitely throws a wrench in it for team Night­shade, but as was brought up earlier, there was perhaps a hint that he was pushed into doing so. I’m sure there will be more on the situ­a­tion in the next book; if Kaylin can forgive the murder of her chil­dren, there is hope for Night­shade still, right? *crosses fingers*

  100. a.e says:

    I’m sure she’s too nice, but if I were the author I would prob­ably get a little amuse­ment from everyone tearing out their hair.…yes, I would snicker. We are all a little ridicu­lous, but it won’t stop me posting or re-reading certain scenes over and over, lol.

  101. a.e says:

    Agree with Jen, self-control and willpower are defi­nitely not lacking in Night­shade. I daresay he would have utter contempt for the people who do lose control in such a way, and he certainly seemed upset over what happened to Kaylin.

  102. Dawn says:

    I absolutely loved Caste in Pearl! I do believe it was my favorite to date and I just cannot wait to find out what happens next.

    Thank you for an amazing read!

  103. Jayme says:

    Hmm, I picked my copy up at a local B&N on my birthday (the 19th) with no problem what­so­ever. They had maybe 5 or 6 copies on the shelf. I’m so glad I didn’t have any issues because once I started I just couldn’t put it down.

    So good! I need more Night­shade, though. Kaylin and Night­shade scenes make me giddy like a school­girl in love. I wish I knew why Kaylin/Severn just doesn’t do the same thing for me. I am really looking forward to Sorrow. The waiting is going to do me in.

  104. Jayme says:

    I also think she’s very much aware of her attrac­tion to Night­shade. She has been reluc­tant to visit him or be near him since the kiss. Seems to me the problem she has is in recon­ciling her feel­ings of attrac­tion and anger and revul­sion all to him. She is not terribly accepting of any feeling in herself other than her desire to protect everyone she can.

  105. Jayme says:

    Ha! Me, too.

    I imagine that Severn and Night­shade will die saving her before there is any romantic deci­sion made on Kaylin’s part. I really don’t see a future for Kaylin at all, honestly. It’s been a while since I’ve read the early books, but she’s a rein­car­nated Goddess of sorts (Right? I’m remem­bering that correctly?) and there have been mention of other Chosen, some even immortal, but not a one is still around.

    But I sure do love reading the Nightshade/Kaylin scenes. :)

  106. a.e says:

    Idk about Goddess, or even neces­sarily ‘rein­car­nated.’ It seems that occa­sion­ally throughout history an indi­vidual is “chosen” (whether by the Ancients or their magic or what­ever) and there­fore is covered in the marks and has abil­i­ties that othes do not. None of them are still around because there is ever only one Chosen at a time (if I under­stand correctly), and I think in one of the earlier books it said there has not been one for a very long time (not said by a mortal, so we can take that to mean a VERY long time). 

    The title of the next book does lend some fore­boding, but I’m not sure we’ll see either Severn or Night­shade die…they are just too inte­gral in the story­line and it would basi­cally end the series. I wouldn’t be surprised to see someone else die, maybe someone close to Kaylin but not absolutely neces­sary to the main storyline…I did wonder if we’d see Teela go as a result of the Regalia; the Hallione said Kaylin could ‘help’ Teela but if we think in Barrani terms, that doesn’t neces­sarily mean a happy ending. I’m hoping though that the title isn’t refer­ring to anything so obvious, that maybe ‘Sorrow’ is in refer­ence to the Barrani chil­dren lost in that one Regalia, perhaps specif­i­cally Terrano and whoe­mever Night­shade lost in that telling (which may even have been Terrano).

  107. Meagan says:

    Wow there are some depressing comments on here now…

    Just to clarify I am not really concerned with who Kaylin ends up with, if anyone, as that’s not why I am reading the books. When I say I prefer Night­shade over Severn I am just talking about the two as themselves. 

    I sadly have favorite char­ac­ters just because I enjoy their person­al­i­ties. Night­shade is defi­nitely my favorite, but he’s followed closely by Sana­balis. The Arkon takes 3rd place, and everyone else sort of moves around depending on the book. Severn is down at the bottom, but just slightly ahead of Diarmat. 

    Anyways, what was every­one’s favorite scene or scene(s) if you want to do it by char­acter? I’m going for a rather random one myself; the first time Kaylin’s talking to the Arkon after ending up in the palace. I ‑loved- that of all the char­ac­ters she ran into between the…event and her meeting with him it was the Arkon who asked her how she was. Granted, it just added in perfectly to the fact he was irri­tated when she was answering his ques­tions right before he asked that…‘Define unsusal’. I am rather surprised he didn’t throw fire at Sana­balis when Kaylin said that.

  108. Jo says:

    I have to agree with you there Meagan. I haven’t yet gotten my hands on Peril yet ( and it’s killing me), but Sagara’s books bring so much more to the table than just a love triangle. I will admit that it does add interest to the book, and is obvi­ously part of the story­line, however, for me the rest of the story is what keeps tuned to the series.
    I’m not trying to offend anyone whose main interest might be Kaylin’s romantic conflicts, but I too would love to hear more discus­sion on other aspects of the book. Even though they are spoilers – I just can’t help myself :)

  109. Jen says:

    I hate to spoil you, Jo! This is why I was reluc­tant to start discussing the plot, because that would neces­si­tate giving away a lot of info. To reveal that Kaylin doesn’t choose between Night­shade and Severn in this book didn’t seem like a spoiler, but just a state­ment of the obvious. 

    The love triangle isn’t the only reason I read these books. I love Kaylin, and the complex world that surrounds her. In fact, the low-key way the romance is handled (very slow and more as an after­thought than the meat of the tale) is very appealing to me. All of Kaylin’s personal rela­tion­ships are fasci­nating. However, glutton for punish­ment that I am, the ones where she faces genuine conflict are most appealing to me. So her inter­ac­tions with the grumpier dragons and the Barrani enter­tain me. 

    I feel like she learns the most when she’s chal­lenged. Sagara has captured the inad­ver­tent arro­gance of young adult­hood well in Kaylin’s char­acter. She is pretty sure her morals and deci­sions are wiser than those of her elders. She can’t under­stand why people do so many bad things, and make so many moral compro­mises. There is a wisdom in Kaylin’s fresh, naive approach to the world. The Consort talks about the appeal of it in the last chapter. But it isn’t the ONLY wisdom, and some­times it ignores the complex real­i­ties of life, espe­cially in Elantra. It is good when she is forced to face real conflict and chal­lenges to her POV, and then learns more under­standing and more compassion. 

    Some­times she teaches hope to the very old and very cynical. At other moments, she is humbled and learns that her initial judg­ments were flawed. I love the push/pull of it.

    I think my favorite aspect of this book has been the theme of hope. It is portrayed as both a wonderful and terrible (painful, tormenting) thing.

  110. shauntel says:

    Agreed, to me the the romance is secondary. The real fun is the actu­ally world and the different races with all the prob­lems they entail. So I think the pace is fine! Just adds spice to the stories:)

    With Teela, the Hallion keep telling Kaylin that she needs to help her. That this is 3rd telling of the regalia (teela has been to two) and that it should complete what was started all those years ago will. I wander if she will be doing for the regalia chil­dren (barrani adults now) that she did for the female dragon and the high lord? 

    Also the name she picked up was the Feral Karion I think. (Ibbe­rion faded like the other ferals before she could touch them) I wander if she is going to be able to release the name to the river of life, or if she is going to have it stuck to her head. (That was funny)

    Now a new Mystery, I wander about the knife that the dragon remade. The one that severn loaned to kaylin and she returned after it had been melted and remade by her fami­lier. Do any of you think it’s now going to be a magical blade?? I do:))

  111. Kathy Scappace says:

    So many events happened in this book that I almost feel the recita­tion of the regalia will be an anti­climax. Although its impor­tance may be why a second book was needed.

    The first impor­tant thing was lighting the candle. I know for me the candle has always been a humorous gripe for Kaylin and I had begun to suspect that the point of the lessons was not so much Kaylin’s magic as to have a reason for Sana­balis to remain her mentor. Now I know that magic is within Kaylin’s delib­erate control and I think Lord Sana­bal­is’s role will be more impor­tant than ever.

    To me the attempt on Bellusdeo was only a vehicle for hatching the egg. I love what came out of the egg and I think it assumed a shape and manner most meant to offer comfort and secu­rity to Kaylin. I can’t wait to find out its name though I do have some suspi­cions. (It isn’s anchored? It could change during the recita­tion? I wonder if it could meld with Kaylin? Become her wings?) I’ve never forgotten that Tara first appeared to Kaylin as a winged being wearing Kaylin’s face.

    The most impor­tant thing was Kaylin’s healing of the Hallionnes. She actively healed Bertolle by removing the Shadows from his name. I’m not going to touch on her now knowing his True Name but the fact that she was able to destroy Shadow was signif­i­cant. It wasn’t just fighting agents of Shadow this time, she engaged Shadow itself and destroyed it.

    I have never felt that Kaylin actu­ally has a romantic future. I’ve always thought that these stories are the journal of her journey to Ravellon where she will become the Keeper of the Library there. To that end I wonder at her collec­tion of Names. I wonder if they will aid her or hinder her when she finally confronts Makuron. I also wonder if the elements them­selves will be able to aid her through their knowl­edge of her True Name.

    Kaylin is in all ways a healer. Right now she is healing a world. The one thing that has always both­ered me was Diar­mat’s treat­ment of Kaylin. By the time they met he already knew she had power and she had already saved the world more than once and he treated her as the lowest life form he had ever had the misfor­tune to meet. That bothers me. It just doesn’t fit. At the very least there should have been some acknowl­ege­ment of her past efforts and triumphs.

  112. Kyra says:

    I don’t think it neces­sarily meant that he was in love with her, but that he loved her — not roman­ti­cally at that point, but the way you love a family member or a close friend.

    In one of the earlier books when he’s staying with her for a night she offers to share the bed with him for them to sleep on and he refuses, and she points out that they shared a bed in the fiefs and he said “It’s different now.” Implying that he didn’t see her in a sexual fashion back when she was a thir­teen-year-old, enough that it would be a strain for him to sleep in a small bed with her.

    The “why I love you” speech indi­cates his feel­ings run way deeper than sex or even romance — most of that speech, if not all of it, could be about a friend or a sister rather than a lover. I think it very likely that sex hadn’t gotten on the radar before she left. Espe­cially since with star­va­tion stunting her growth so much that the Hawk­lord didn’t believe she was thir­teen and not ten when she showed up at the Halls of Law.

    I think that devel­oped, as a new aspect of Severn’s feel­ings for her, once he encoun­tered her as an adult.

  113. Kyra says:

    Yeah, it seems that every­body’s drop­ping the ball with regards to getting it out on time.

    I pre-ordered from Amazon after having to get it special-ordered from Barnes & Noble last year (given that I wasn’t inclined to drive twelve hours to the nearest place that had it), and Amazon was nine days late with it this year, during which time I didn’t even dare go INTO a Barnes & Noble lest I find it on the shelves this time, mocking me.

    Ah, well, I have it now.

  114. Wendy Good says:

    Is it possible that part of the problem that occurred with the Barrani chil­dren who were exposed to the Regalia at such a young age “un-anchored in their names”, possibly had their names overlap, thus becoming a dual person? That may be why Anteela is some­times named as An’Teela, and why Iberi­enne could have two sigils to his name. Just thinkin…

  115. Rasmusb says:

    I pre-ordered from amazon​.ca months ago — but I JUST got the book last night — I finished about 10 PM. :)

    Loved it! Loved the surprise guest, the Archon (as always) & the Barrani ‘hostels’. I cannot wait to read the next book.

  116. Rasmusb says:

    I’m chiming in on your ebook date wish. That way I could read it the day of publishing & not worry about the snail mail dead tree copy. (I get both on the series I love.)
    I cannot believe amazon was so screwy — delays on pre-orders? Really? *sigh*

  117. Rasmusb says:

    Just need to ditto the list! I really loved the first Hallione’s sqawk/roar fight with the little un-named not-dragon. :)

  118. Rasmusb says:

    I’m pretty sure the Consort was asleep — remember she was the only one who could hear the chil­dren’s song being sung — with grue­some deaths for her enemies. :) (I loved that bit — so funny!)

  119. Paul Howard says:

    Off Topic, but does Michelle have any word on more Sun Sword ebooks?

  120. Paul Howard says:

    Just “turning on” follow-up comments.

  121. Genna Warner says:

    If you check the tumblr site, she has recently posted about it there.

  122. Loved the book. Had a horrible time trying to get ahold of it. Ordered it on Amazon on 9/17 with free 2‑day ship­ping as a Prime member, didn’t get it till Sept 27th. Tried going by Hast­ings to see if they had it in store and they told me it didn’t come out till Oct. 1st. Drove me nuts till I got it.
    The familiar is cute. Not sure how she’s going to “name” him if he needs a true name. Night­shade is acting awfully stand-offish, which I guess is prob­ably because he’s around all the other Barrani, but I think it’s hilar­ious that the familiar doesn’t like him messing with Kaylin. Can’t wait to see what happens once they start the story!

  123. Jen says:

    Do you think Bellusdeo is really being groomed for Emmerian? I see her as being saved for the emperor. As in, for the future of the race, she may be “encour­aged” to consider mating with the emperor and producing clutches. I know the dragons are immortal, but they must think about how few dragons there are and how many Barrani. Up to this point, the Barrani could repro­duce (albeit slowly) and the dragons could not. She makes it possible for the dragons to repro­duce, radi­cally upset­ting the balance of power (in poten­tial). You can see why the attempt was made on Bellus­deo’s life. When she appeared, I’m sure members of the Barrani court were shit­ting bricks. 

    I think Bellusdeo has options, too. Her connec­tion to Maggaron is stronger than her tie to anyone else. It may not be “romantic,” but it could derail any plans the dragons have for breeding. Bellusdeo is in an unen­vi­able posi­tion; simply because of her gender, she is the center of a huge knot of expec­ta­tions and plots. There is no way she can have a simple, uncom­pli­cated life.

  124. shauntel says:

    In one of the books, when they spoke of dragon chil­dren, they spoke of joining life forces (or strength of the life forces to create chil­dren) That it needed to be strong. I don’t remember anywhere it stated that emme­rion was going to mate with her??

    Actu­ally we haven’t really met Dragon Emme­rion. We’ve seen him in cast in chaos, but he has not of yet spoken around Kaylin.

    I think that she is expected to have chil­dren with the emperor.

  125. Stefanie Skye says:

    I also wish it would come out on the same date. It’s one of the few series I like that doesn’t release on the same date as the phys­ical version. I have ended up switching over to buying mainly ebooks as using my Sony reader is soo much easier on my messed up wrists than reading a phys­ical book. Plus after having to move my giant book library almost 3 years ago I totally did not want to go through that again. So I spent a lot of time selling off my phys­ical series of books on eBay and re-purchasing my favorites in ebook format. Now the most I have in phys­ical format is 75 or under and that still takes up more space (lol) than the 320 ebooks I have.

  126. Krylia says:

    As usual with Michelle Sagara, I have re-read the Peril several times already (because once is never enough)! In my re-reading, it occurred to me that Night­shade almost certainly confronted Iber­ri­enne (confronta­tion outside the Hallionne around p.330). I do not think Night­shade’s status as Outcaste was the real reason for the fric­tion. I’m drawing this conclu­sion based largely on what Andellen says on p.386 — 387. Night­shade clearly didn’t start the violence, or the Hallionne would likely have reacted differ­ently, and he didn’t expect the level of oppo­si­tion he faced, but having claimed Kaylin, he really wouldn’t be able to let some other Lord blow her up. It also seemed to me that Night­shade is not behaving like ‘himself’ in this book — poten­tial emotional turmoil for our heart­less Lord?

    Does anyone besides me wonder if the Lady & Night­shade used to be lovers? If he was possibly made Outcaste because she had grown too attached to him (in her senti­mental way)? Since she didn’t know which of her brothers she would even­tu­ally end up with, it seems possible that she would have taken other lovers over the centuries. And Kaylin’s jealous? She’s certainly very aware of it when Night­shade & the Lady are together. =)

    I’ve wondered for a while if Severn may have been sent to Kaylin by her father when her mother died. For a street savy orphan, taking in a girl half his age (who is both clue­less and some­what reck­less) seems entirely unwise. We also know that bringing Steffi & Jade to live with them was not some­thing he promoted, so obvi­ously he wasn’t into just pulling random girls off the streets. He knew who Kaylin was before Kaylin knew about him, and he was acting like her protector right from the start. He also seems to have been more aware of what was happening in the fief than Kaylin was. What if he went to Night­shade that time because he could no longer contact Kaylin’s father (for what­ever reason)? The comment in this book about how Severn some­times just sits (p.251) seems strange. Who does that? Severn the Medi­ta­tion King? 

    I’m thinking we loose either Severn of the Lady in the next book. So far we haven’t really lost anyone — a miracle, given how many near disas­ters there are. I’m wondering if Kaylin’s little dragon ends up killing Severn since she hasn’t found his name to contain him.

    I agree that Severn would be the safe choice & Night­shade the bold (or desperate?) one. It will be inter­esting to see how it unfolds, or if a third option will present itself. Here’s to another year of anxious waiting. =)

  127. Leanna Weisdorn says:

    After reading all the coments, it’s diffi­cult to sort through my one thoughts.
    The book started normally, than the last 100 pages were so compessed, so it did not meat my expec­ta­tions. Still, I loved it and it was a great and hard work for the author.
    Someone mentioned that there are theo­ret­i­cally 3 more books. The next book is about the West Mark. Than some­thing should be done about Ravalone, I don’t think that can be left for long — that would be the other two books. I hope it doesn’t become much more.
    Now, when I read the discus­sion on the Nightshade/Kaylin/Severn triangle, I’m for Nightshade/Kaylin.
    The way they talk about the regalia, gives me the impres­sion that it is going to change Kaylin more. And that brings me to one major point, I can imagen 3 possible endings. 1, Kaylin dies. 2, She loses her marks and 3, She retains her marks and becomes “a person of power”.
    In the end 1, is the easiesed way to end the story, becouse than there are no “how can that or that rela­tion­ship work out”. So all parings are possible.
    2, would favour Severn as her boyfriend and working for the hawks. I have diffi­cul­ties imagening this ending, because all the power, posi­tions and to some extend friends she has made, she could not keep.
    Number 3 is my personal favorid. But for her to remain the chosen, she will have to change. The regalia could be one major step. Night­shade (and the other Barrani) has a strong influ­ence on shaping her into an adult, who sees the realty of the world, the meaning of immor­tality, power and morality. This way she couldn’t be hawk, but she could be a healer, possibly making here “home” Night­shade into a “good” place. Thaking care of others and healing are the most impor­tend things to who she escen­tially is. She could be with Severn, Night­shade, somone els or no one.
    My thoughts one the little dragon were: is it a part of Kaylin or is it seperat from her? When she names it does it become a part of Kaylin? I’m for the first.
    Oky, I’m stop­ping now. Good night!
    Sorry, for my spelling. As much as I love english it just isn’t mine.

  128. Jessica says:

    I have a hunch that one of the dozen or more chil­dren that where exposed to the regalia that teela was present for could possibly have been Night­shades child or brother/sister. I know that he has mentioned before that he has no chil­dren but by barrani defi­n­i­tion if his child was changed in the ways sagara described these other chil­dren to be, if one was his, he more then likely would not consider his child to be tech­ni­cally alive nor at the time Kaylin asked him this ques­tion would he be able to answer the ques­tion in a way that she would be able to under­stand. I think that may be a big reason as to why he wants to finish the last part of the story that was not told to those chil­dren the day they fell. I feel this is what he did not openly say to Kaylin when they where discussing how Night­shade knew Terrano. and after this discus­sion she wondered who of those lost chil­dren had meaning to him, and Night­shade makes it seem that he hopes by completeing the tale they will be able to bring whoever this child is back to him whole and not broken.

  129. jessica says:

    Honestly as Kaylin grows into her powers oven if she where to be with Severn which im am certainly NOT!!!!!!!! wanting in any way shape or form (i would not cry if he where erat­i­cated) he would end up dying simply because he is not strong enough to follow where she is going. where as Night­shade is strong enough. severn is also not strong enough to protect her or be of any real help anyways when ravellon awakens and will only hold her back possibly causing her to fail.

  130. shauntel says:

    Ok, stop trying to off people, we are not going to lose the Lady, because they are now aware that Iber­rion (or whoever he is) is trying to get the lake of names(life), so she will now be guarded. (they have been trying to take her alive) 

    Night­shade, I think is having some diffi­culty. what kind at this time is unknown. But hope­fully it will not kill him (hey Main chartacter). 

    Severn, is also not going to die, please people stop making him so weak in your minds. He has been sent by the Wolf lord to kill Lord Iber­rion. He has already in the past killed a barrani arcanist in the west woods, which is why he doesn’t have to offer blood to some of the way stations. (He’s strong, get out of the denial)

    I really don’t see Night­shade and the consort as a couple, remember that they said she had consid­ered him a friend (i think he may be family). Also Outcast’s did not have to commit a major crime, it could also be a polit­ical manu­vering, and it was hinted that this is what happened to Nightshade

    (well there went my thoughts, hope it helps)

    This book is great!!

  131. diana says:

    I really like this series. I like the humor, Kaylin’s slow char­acter devel­op­ment, a strong female role who performs heroic deeds, the under­lying life issues pondered, and the progres­sion of the back­story involving Severn, Lord Night­shade and Kaylin. 

    The tension that has been holding my interest, besides seeing where Kaylin will go, is the unfolding triangle between Kaylin, Lord Night­shade and Severn. Kaylin is Chosen; the lessons she learns are about choice. It appears she must choose between Severn and Lord Night­shade. Or rather, the author is so far success­fully balancing on a knife edge between the two. Each of the two char­ac­ters seems to advance in parallel in the plot line, while remaining myste­rious. Severn has waited seven of his 25 year old life and Night­shade has waited hundreds of his several hundred year life for Kaylin in some way; both are waiting for her. Each has made obvious their desire for Kaylin, are neces­sary for her protec­tion, and can commu­ni­cate with her in a special way. In each book, her rela­tion­ship with both men has progressed, except perhaps in Cast in Peril.

    Severn and Kaylin surely love each other, yet I feel no sexual tension in that rela­tion­ship. Kaylin took a Barrani name and it is hinted that she may be immortal. Her growing powers seem to make for an unequal rela­tion­ship with Severn, yet he is a touch­stone for her. Severn is close to Kaylin in age and expe­ri­ence and they are both human. But Severn has not been there several times when Kaylin needed help, and Night­shade stepped in to help her. As to Night­shade, the reader is left unsure whether he is capable of emotion connec­tion because he is not human, yet one is aware of sexual tension and in past books Night­shade has demon­strated great depth of feeling and also sensi­tivity. Night­shade has power of his own to balance out Kaylin’s. So how will this triangle be resolved? 

    Now that Tiamaras is cleaning up his fief estab­lishing a frame­work for civi­liza­tion and a healthier economy and protec­tion for resi­dents, by contrast Nightshade’s rela­tion­ship with his fief looks less savory. Previ­ously, he seemed poten­tially a victim of some unknown circum­stances which led to him being outcaste. Now, by contrast, it seems that he is cold-hearted with regards to the people of his fief.

    I must admit I find the rela­tion­ship with Night­shade much more inter­esting than with Severn. There seems to be more room for devel­op­ment in the future. Kaylin with Severn seems too pedestrian.

    I am disap­pointed in this last book, Cast in Peril, only in the sense that I feel like Sagara has devi­ated from this triangle of tension. Severn seems to be playing a passive waiting game that makes him seem creepy and his char­acter seems some­what flat. And Night­shade, who was one of the most inter­esting char­ac­ters in the series, seems to have disap­peared and forgotten Kaylin’s exis­tence, even though in previous books he is always waiting for her to visit and a couple of books ago he made it very clear that he feels very passion­ately about her. Yet this book was hinting that Night­shade had a rela­tion­ship with Consort? I felt like Cast in Peril was leading us in a new direc­tion that didn’t synch with previous book plot lines and characters.

    I did wonder if there would at some point be a serious denoue­ment whereby Severn is killed, moving Kaylin to such emotional anguish that she does some final heroic “save the world” action and then resolves to be with Lord Night­shade as the one who is her equal in some sense. Or she uses up the last word on her body and the Barrani word in her body and returns to normal human life with Severn. I do hope that is far down the road. I am enjoying the story of Kaylin and thank the author for many hours of reading pleasure!

  132. Jennifer says:

    Re: Night­shade saying he had no chil­dren. Now, I don’t have the book in front of me, but I thought there was also a line there about don’t you under­stand what Outcaste is in the same scene? It could be by Barrani defi­n­i­tion he lost all ties to his family when he became Outcaste so could there­fore answer the ques­tion no, even if he had children.

    Now, I think I read some­where in Peril that he was a friend of the old high lord before he made him Outcaste. He also had a picture of one of the consorts in his tower. Given he was a friend of the old high lord, could his interest been in the previous consort, now dead? And his interest and affec­tion towards the daughter is do to that?

  133. Terry says:

    Everyone-Night­shade isthe prover­bial bad boy and Severn is the nice guy. Girls seem to always want the bad boy and toss away the nice guy. There is still alot of plot lines still out there. Yes Severn could end up with Kaylin, Kaylin could now be immortal but Severn is not, Kaylin ends up with Night­shade much later after Severn passes away. I like the part about Kaylin becoming the libarian of Ravellon, hadn’t heard of that plot line. Always thought that Kaylin would heal the world in which she lives and maybe re-open the portals to other worlds the way they where eons ago. 

    I like the series, hope there are more than 3 books coming and I like comparing Kaylin and Jewel’s charec­tors(?), they are both compelling to read about
    There is some sexual tension between Kaylin and Severn, when they sleep togeather in the first hostel. Then later they don’t sleep togeather due to Severn’s tension.

  134. shauntel says:

    RE: Jennifer from 12 hours ago.
    The part about the polit­ical manu­vering to have someone declared Outcaste is a form of assassig­na­tion. (I think Andella stated this to Kaylin) It is found in Cast in Peril, when they were discussing how/when Night­shade would come to the West March, and if he could safely listen to the regalia.

    I’ll have to reread the part about the picture (of previous consort) in castle night­shade. Although I think that this kind of confirms family connec­tion, because she stated that Night­shade was a close friend of the last High lord of the barrani in the book too.

    Yes, and i agree I think one of the regalia chil­dren is blood related to Nightshade

    Thanks for repyling

  135. a.e says:

    i think the tension b/t Kaylin and Severn in the first hostel is more guilt/awkwardness on her part. in the hostels after that she doesn’t share a room with him b/c the hostel chooses another room for her, it is not an active choice on the part of Kaylin or Severn.

  136. Jen says:

    I didn’t get sexual tension from Kaylin in that scene. I got it from Severn. From Kaylin, I perceived aware­ness of Severn’s desires that makes her uncomfortable. 

    I should clarify that she isn’t repulsed by Severn. She loves him. She wants to make him happy. But she isn’t yearning to sleep with him. If he wasn’t pushing, making her aware of what he wants, she would sit like a mush­room and not do anything. She would rely on him for comfort and support, but sexu­al­izing their rela­tion­ship would not occur to her. 

    This could change, as she grad­u­ally recovers and grows more comfort­able. But she does not desire him right now. Not enough to over­come her trau­matic past.

  137. a.e says:

    Re: Shauntel/Jennifer

    It’s hard to decide how to take Night­shade’s comment about him not having chil­dren. As for the picture of the Consort in his Castle, I do remember there being a painting of a blonde Barrani but I don’t think anywhere in the books that it says the Consort is the only one with that color hair. I also don’t remember if her mother had it. I think there were allu­sions to Night­shade being family, or very close to the family, though; defi­nitely I remember that he was a contem­po­rary of the current High Lord’s father.

  138. Jen says:

    I think Winc may have the right of it. Night­shade says that Kaylin HOLDS his name. This is some­thing deeper than simply knowing it. If her will is strong enough, she can use it to compel him. She used Ynphar­i­on’s name to control him at the end. 

    She could only do that because she saw his name. Hearing it isn’t enough. If she hears the name but doesn’t see it, she doesn’t HOLD it and cannot harm the person with it. 

    It seemed to me like calling Night­shade Calar­nenne is an attempt to make him part of the Barrani again. At the end of Court­light the Lord of the West March tells Kaylin that he speaks Night­shade’s name, when many will not. They just call him the Outcaste (like Evarrim does). Moving from Outcaste, to Night­shade, to Calar­nenne, is a way of symbol­i­cally rein­te­grating him with Barrani society. It’s subtle and no one actu­ally explains it (of course) because they are Barrani. Igno­rance is no excuse, and they’ll keep you igno­rant and making mistakes as long as they can. Kaylin is going along with it, whether to help Night­shade or simply because the Consort is doing it and she wants to please her. So near the end of Peril she talks about him and almost refers to him as Night­shade, but stops herself and calls him Calar­nenne instead. I like the idea that calling him Calar­nenne gives him back some of the iden­tity he lost.

  139. You know, I think the problem is that Kaylin instinc­tively knows by now, due to her Chosen powers and expe­ri­ences and her general midwifery and healing, that the glass dragon NEEDS a true name. Every­one’s been warning her that he needs the real deal because he’s so powerful (and poten­tially even more powerful I’d guess). He ate one of her true words, but she didn’t initiate that. There’s no reser­voir of true words she can pick from for him. It’ll be inter­esting to see how that gets resolved.

  140. I’m Team Severn myself, Chris ^^.

    Where I really thought a lovely bit of book was missing was Kaylin, Bellusdeo, Teela and Tain out on the town. That might be a lovely short story for an anthology though *hint hint*

  141. Good catch. I thought that was iffy, too.

  142. This.

    I thought it was made so very extra-clear in this book that Barrani are not humans. None of them are. Not even the ones that Kaylin likes and vice versa.

  143. I would if I could — I might actu­ally be able to discuss it with the author then, seeing as she works there part-time ^^.

  144. Michelle did say at least half a year ago that the projected Western March book had turned into two and that Cast in Peril was the first half — so it wasn’t that surprising. It was still wholly satis­fying for me.

  145. Jen says:

    I like her with him as well. Severn feels like her family, and Night­shade like a lover. But there’s been a marked change in Night­shade’s person­ality recently. He’s suddenly acting very cold to Kaylin. Before, he seemed to be grad­u­ally thawing. This is partic­u­larly strange because Night­shade’s behavior in Chaos betrayed strong feel­ings for her. The kiss and his reac­tion to what Barren did were as close as I have seen him to losing control. 

    Then, starting in Ruin, he was notice­ably angrier, colder, and more closed-off. When she confronted him in Peril about his missing subjects, he seemed to go out of his way to alienate her and empha­size how inhuman and amoral he is. He told her that she shouldn’t let hope blind her to what he is and what he did (111).

    Now, at this point I was ready to give up. I figured Sagara wanted Kaylin with Severn, and she was closing off the possi­bility of a rela­tion­ship with Night­shade. But then an odd thing happened. People kept mentioning hope. Over and over, I stum­bled across the word in Peril. Teela telling Kaylin not to have hopes for Night­shade (118). Night­shade contra­dicting himself when he talks about it. First he tells her it is a mortal failing, a blind­ness (111), but later in the book he tells her it helped her survive(441). He tells her she always fights to keep hope alive, for herself and for others. When she asks if he hopes, he replies that “hope is not required.” In fact, he says that hope can become a constant torment when you live as long as the Barrani – centuries of hoping for what may never come (442). Kaylin, though, ever percep­tive, remem­bers that he told her the day before that he hoped for a chance to heal the regalia (390). She tells him he grasps hope anyway, even though it cuts him. Unable to refute her, he does not reply (442).

    Sagara has set up a lovely duality here. Hope is a mortal virtue, a willful blind­ness that helps short-lived people endure. For immor­tals, however, hope can become too painful. Having seen hundreds or thou­sands of years of exis­tence, immor­tals become jaded and cynical. They leave hope behind as a painful illusion. 

    Yet Night­shade is tempted by hope in Peril. Although he initially dismisses it as a mortal flaw, by the end of the book he admits he has not stopped hoping to fix the regalia. As he admits his hopes to her, he grows closer to Kaylin. She notices this change and responds to it – she nearly tries to comfort him after he tells her about Terrano. She actu­ally wonders if he once had a heart (441) and she tells Bertolle that she’s never seen him so human (393). Her mortality, her hope­ful­ness, is rubbing off on him (or maybe revealing parts of himself he prefers to hide). This is not to say that Night­shade is going to be mirac­u­lously reha­bil­i­tated. Teela, Severn, her familiar, even the Consort are all skep­tical and warn her not to trust him blindly. But I think the novel is offering us hope (OK, I have to stop using this word) that redemp­tion is possible.

    I have no idea if these clues make a Kaylin/Nightshade pairing more likely. But they certainly add interest to the story. They also place Night­shade front and center in the narra­tive, which I enjoy, because he’s one of my favorite char­ac­ters. Much as he can some­times infu­riate me, he is fasci­nating to read about.

  146. Ruth says:

    I was unable to buy the book-in fact I ordered the book from Books a Million as it was to be sent out after the 18th they pulled the book from the ship­ment and have resent it I will get it Tomorrow night. I was mad and got the ebook. Read and LOVED it!

  147. Ruth says:

    I happen to agree — no issue on the age and Severn sees her differ­ently now. That said i do NOT see Severn as boring ‑HELLO he was a Wolf for years!

  148. Ruth says:

    Iberrion’s Double Signa­ture my take is that the “shadow” on his magic signa­ture is the same as the shadow on the Barranni whom she took the name from and cast the shadow out. They are for want of a better term “infected” by shadow and it shows by the shadows on their names. Kaylin can evidently “cure” them of the “shadow” as she can see it in them-most likely due ot her marks as chosen.

  149. Ruth says:

    I agree I miss borders! Only books a million is near where I live‑B&N is an hour drive away!

  150. Ruth says:

    Team Severn all the way here-sexy human with the myste­rious years as a wolf- he aint a boring man in MY opinion.

  151. a.e says:


    Let me just say, I love your posts!. We are frequently of a like mind concerning aspects of the CoE books, but you manage to put your ideas into words sooo much better than I. Also, your use of page refer­ences to back up your thoughts/theories is awesome; I almost expect to see a “Works Cited” page at the end, lol. there’s a thought: use the CoE series to teach a class! Anthro­pology, reli­gions, and philos­ophy all rolled into one!

  152. a.e says:

    Re: redemp­tion-

    I’m not sure that concept is really applic­able to the Barrani, because they very infre­quently consider that they’ve done some­thing “wrong.” Their morals/values are so different from mortals, and I’m not sure they would think it neces­sary to be “redeemed.” Night­shade does not express regret over his actions, rather he prompts Kaylin to view him with clarity; it seems less to me that he is purpose­fully alien­ating her, than he is desiring their rela­tion­ship (in what­ever form) not to be formed of false premises and illusions. 

    I’m really in on the recur­rent theme of hope in this book, and the affect that Kaylin’s chan­nelling of ‘hope’ is having on the people around her. In Night­shade’s case, I wonder if part of his standoff-ness in their first convo in Peril is becasue he doesn’t know for sure if she will be Harmoniste and so is afraid to invest that emotion in her (espe­cially as it is a painful one for Barrani). 

    And what about the emotions he reveals to Kaylin when he is singing “through” her at the second Hallione? At first I attrib­uted them to the situ­a­tion with the Regalia and the lost chil­dren, mainly because Kaylin says it wasn’t the song she would have picked for her mother/Steffi/Jade (368) – like the lost chil­dren, all “dead” in some way. But then she says there is “..just a universe full of lone­li­ness, isola­tion, pain.” That doesn’t to me seem to jive completely with the first thought, so I wonder if those feel­ings are pertaining specif­i­cally to Night­shade and his place in the world. He is Outcaste, with no connec­tions to Court or family; no mention is made of a mate or chil­dren (I know there is debate about that last one, but there’s no actual direct mention), he is surrounded mainly by servants – and then Kaylin comes along. 

    I know this next idea leans heavily to the “Nightlin” side of things, but bear with me. He marked her, calls her Erenne on a regular basis, is willing to wait an untold amount of time for her to actu­ally become Erenne..he ignores her lack of manners, protects her phys­i­cally, gives her infor­ma­tion for nothing (very un-Barrani), is attracted to her, shows sensi­tivity to her feel­ings, even allows himself to be vulner­bale to her – and for what? If he once consid­ered her only a tool, he doesn’t now; he doesn’t even try to give her orders. Could it be that he hopes her posi­tion as Erenne will assuage the emotions Kaylin senses while he is singing?

    Prob­ably no other Barrani would think that way, but Night­shade is demon­strably not like any other Barrani. He is unique, as is Kaylin, and while his outward behavior towards her in the past couple of books has been distant/chilly, I think it’s a defense mech­a­nism against the hope that Kaylin inspires. 

    Also, in most of Peril there seems to be a duality between public behavior and private behavior – damn that familiar, anyway – that began after the Consort called Night­shade away from Kaylin (jealous, much?). So really, it’s only a couple of conver­sa­tion in which his atti­tude is less warm.

  153. Edward says:

    I love this series, it is the best I have read. Keep it going, and cannot wait for Sorrow.

    Here is my specual­tions on the love story aspect I see so far.

     As fat as I can tell from what I we know now is that Night­shade is not tring to have a romantic rela­tion­ship with Kaylin, but as was stated in a previous book she will rede­fine / revert the term Erran. I believe that he is using Kaylin to restore the changed Barrani. For good or for ill it is not clear yet.

    Severn is a mystery still. He is clearly in love with Kaylin and she is in love with him as was discussed in the cast in chaos. While tring to get the deviorer into the elemental garden. 

    Their are numerous ques­tions, but so far I want to really have answered are: is Kaylin and Severn immortal, will the little dragon get a name, and will she change all the Barrani back to normal after recitation

    There are numerous refer­ences in books to kaylin not being human, but it is never explained more then she is chosen. In this latest book it is explained that no mortal can stay in the Halloionne. However, kaylin just ignores this comment totally. She is told that the humans are not related to her. She is also able to heal others and is able to heal herself. 

    What we about Severn is that he has been referred to as a shadow child, this could be a refer­ence to him being a shadow wolf. We now know that the his thoughts cannot be read, he was taught be a Barrani Lord, and taken to the West March before. The ques­tion is weather or not he was changed be the recita­tion, but we might not be able to get an answer to this ques­tion as his char­acter does not allow for it.

    Then everyone in the book is telling her to name the little dragon, but she hasn’t because she does not want to cage him with one. However, if she doesn’t he might change during the recita­tion which could go good or bad and might leave her because of it.

  154. Kyra says:

    Barrani very defi­nitely have a Blue and Orange Morality thing going on. With Night­shade’s emotions (or lack thereof) regarding the sold humans, I’m sort of reminded of some­thing I heard from the narrator of a nature docu­men­tary, after a cheetah had chased down and killed a baby gazelle: “There is neither malice nor remorse” in the predator, which kills to eat and, perhaps, finds fun in the chase and the struggle, the way a housecat will chase joyfully after a piece of string. Night­shade is a similar sort of predator — he doesn’t eat the people in his fief, he rules over them; they don’t feed his hunger but serve his legit­i­macy as fieflord and a person of power and note. 

    He values them as posses­sions like that, nothing more, because empathy is mostly a foreign language to him which he sees no point in learning (he sees Kaylin hurt through her love for others many times, while, I think, missing the purpose and joy and happi­ness and sense of home that it also inspires in her — possibly because there is no need awake in him for such things, whereas Kaylin thrives on it like food). At the same time, to care for their welfare over­much would be viewed as a weak­ness — because there’s nothing in it for him from a Barrani perspec­tive or a fiefs perspec­tive, because it would indi­cate some kind of need for the fieflings’ approval, because it would cost him the money and patronage of the people who come to the fiefs for various illegal-across-the-bridge activ­i­ties, and because it would be seen as an attempt to court Kaylin’s approval, which appears to be consid­ered demeaning.

    It’s a very inter­esting rela­tion­ship — they have such spec­tac­u­larly different values — and Night­shade values her but can’t/won’t play over­much to her values to get her approval, and of course she won’t abandon hers, but she doesn’t like him as much. The best Night­shade can do is be openly himself, and offer what he’s willing to offer, and accept her response. One thing I love about this rela­tion­ship is that he doesn’t push her to accept him (and one thing I love about the char­acter of Night­shade is how he manages to make this a power state­ment: he is utterly the oppo­site of some desperate horndog; he has implied that rape is beneath him (“I take no screaming mortal chil­dren to my bed” in Cast in Shadow); his desire does not rule him, and he’s absolutely right about this mindset serving him, because there’s a safety there, for Kaylin, in the space between them that has neither pres­sures nor illu­sions to threaten her. 

    They don’t fit together values-wise, but they have an inti­macy of knowing where the other stands, and in that regard they do fit together; iron­i­cally enough, it is a similar thing to what the Tha’alani have that the Barrani find so abhor­rent and threat­ening: under­standing and being under­stood. If there’s a vulner­a­bility in sharing and being open, there’s also a power in not needing pretense and hiding. It’s oddly enough the flip side of the same coin — Night­shade would never touch the Tha’alaan, but he marked Kaylin and let her have his name. I haven’t thought much yet about the hope aspect, but I kind of feel like she is a sort of a safe space, a safe connec­tion, for him too.

  155. Kyra says:

    Re: Night­shade saying he has no chil­dren: it was exactly that: a present-tense state­ment “I have no children.”

    Which could mean he had one and zie died or was killed — we know that one of the twelve non-Teela chil­dren had survived because he showed up, but an unknown number of the rest could have been killed by the Barrani after they started killing Barrani, and Night­shade could have had a child in this category.

    Or it could mean that he had a child who was one of these chil­dren and zie survived, like Terrano, or possibly Terrano himself, and is consid­ered not Barrani, or not alive, or not family anymore.

    Or it could mean that being Outcaste, Night­shade has no kin, period, with familial rela­tion­ships defined as much by continued agree­ment as by blood rela­tion­ship — Outcaste being disowned and disowning being suffi­cient to negate the blood ties.

    Or he could have been lying, or not-quite-telling-the-truth, or not ever seeing it rele­vant that he had chil­dren and figuring that for all intents and purposes, he might as well say he doesn’t have them.

    And, of course, his emotional attach­ment to one of the Regalia chil­dren could be to a sibling or cousin.

  156. Kyra says:

    I’m not sure why people think she has to end up with one or the other. I mean, I’m not sure where the human culture is on the matter, but she shares a book with Tha’alani who don’t do exclu­sivity beyond the exper­i­mental phase and Leon­tines who have multiple wives — Kaylin could easily end up with a deep, abiding love rela­tion­ship or marriage with Severn while also being Night­shade’s lover from time to time.

    I’m vaguely curious about inter­species rela­tion­ships in their world. I’ve seen them mentioned and hinted at (Rennick talked about finding a Tha’alani/non-Tha’alani romance not some­thing he could find believ­able, but he obvi­ously found it conceiv­able or he wouldn’t have mentioned it in the first place; Night­shade has an obvious interest in Kaylin plus there are all those mortals in his throne hall, with the subtext that he might have had some or all of them in that fashion; and Teela expresses an interest in Severn in the first book, complete with a smile that was “all cat.”

    But I’ve never seen anything explic­itly said that so-and-so is inti­mate with so-and-so when the so-and-so’s are not the same species.

  157. Kyra says:

    I think Kaylin is going to see the name somehow, or give it shape, with the help of her magic. It’s entirely possible that the mark that he ate is his name, but he still needs her help to make it his.

    Or, for that matter, he might eat some­thing from the Regalia that will be part or all of his name.

    I love the part where he bit Night­shade, espe­cially after Michelle teased us with the sugges­tion, but not the actu­ality, of him biting the Hawk­lord’s nose.

  158. Kyra says:

    Forgot to say: I hope it bites Lord Diarmat once she gets back. I hope Bellusdeo is there to laugh at it, too.

  159. Jen says:

    Kaylin needs both men, in different ways and for different things, so I could get on board with her being with them both. But I don’t think Severn or Night­shade share well. Every time they are on scene together, they prac­ti­cally start growling at each other. I can’t imagine them agreeing to share Kaylin.

    That doesn’t mean Kaylin will be forced to choose. Circum­stances may choose for her. Calar­nenne or Severn may die, or take on a respon­si­bility that makes them inel­i­gible for a rela­tion­ship with Kaylin. Tiamaris, for example, is completely devoted to his fief and its sentient tower, Tara. Yet before Silence I wondered if he was a possible love interest for Kaylin. I don’t know if Kaylin will choose, or if the story will choose for her.

  160. Jen says:

    The page numbers are the English major in me coming out. Glad you like it. I’m enjoying reading a fantasy that requires some of those skills I devel­oped reading LITERATURE (say it in a snooty British accent, if you please). 

    I just found an inter­view with the author in which she talks about her work (http://​www​.tor​.com/​b​l​o​g​s​/​2012​/​10​/​s​l​e​e​p​s​-​w​i​t​h​-​m​o​n​s​t​e​r​s​-​m​i​c​h​e​l​l​e​-​s​a​g​a​r​a​-​a​k​a​-​m​i​c​h​e​l​l​e​-​w​e​s​t​-​a​n​s​w​e​r​s​-​s​i​x​-​q​u​e​s​t​i​ons). She mentions that she hates spelling things out. So she hints and suggests, and we get the fun of picking up the trails of bread crumbs to try to deci­pher her meaning. I love doing this, espe­cially since it’s so rewarding with someone as talented as Ms. Sagara. When you find a clue, it IS a clue and it means some­thing (or will mean some­thing in the future). 

    She also mentions “hope” in the inter­view, which made me crow and jump around with joy. I knew it meant some­thing! The inter­view is very much worth reading. She talks about her favorite writers, and confirms my sneaking suspi­cions about the Barrani and elves. 

    I love reading your posts and am surprised by how simi­larly we see the books. I don’t know if it’s a case of folie a deux, or great minds thinking alike. I’ll assume we’re just both brilliant :)

  161. Jen says:

    I agree that Night­shade wants to restore the changed Barrani chil­dren. He also wants to fix the regalia that changed them, which seems to have been tainted somehow by the failure. He hinted at other reasons, but didn’t spell any of them out. 

    Whether that is good or bad is hard to say. At first, it seems good. Healing anything tainted seems posi­tive, espe­cially a true story. Stories are vital and trans­for­ma­tive in this series, and fixing them is imper­a­tive. But doing this has been costly. Night­shade is risking Kaylin’s life and/or sanity by making her the harmoniste. His devil’s bargain with Iber­ri­enne may have also been prompted by the desire to fix the regalia – he may have sold his people not for money, but for info or conces­sions from the Arcanist. Selling his people has contributed to nearly corrupting the Hallionne Orbaranne and allowing the West March to fall. So Night­shade has sacri­ficed a lot and made many moral compro­mises to achieve his goal. We won’t know the true cost, or how far he’s willing to go, until the end of Sorrow.

  162. You know, I wouldn’t be suprised if he IS a wolf on the side yet and that whole reveal will really hit the fan — maybe in connec­tion with his assassin job in the Western Marches.
    He really keeps his part of the not-shared past very close to the vest.

  163. Will says:

    Just a quick question…what specif­i­cally do the color of Barrani/Dragon’s eye color mean?

    I managed to figure out the following for the Barrani:

    Blue — irri­ta­tion (darker the color, the more intense the emotion)
    Dark Blue — seri­ously PISSED

    Lavender — passion, sexual

    Green — calm, content

    Brown — happy?

    Are there any other colors?


    Orange — angry
    Red — rage
    Normal eye color — ?
    Gold — happy?

  164. Will says:

    I’m been trying to figure out what the eye color of both Barrani and Dragon signifys. Please explain?

  165. a.e says:

    you got the Barrani stuff mostly right. Blue and Lavender were good, but Green is calm/content/“happy”/amused..basically posi­tive emotions. The only time we’ve seen brown involved respect/aproval, and gold is shock, I believe (less sure about that one).

    Dragons are a little easier, since we’ve only seen the gold-orange-red spec­trum, but they have inner and outer lids (like some lizards, etc) which can dim the color a little. Full red, lids down, is reserved for the facing-Makkuron type situations.

  166. a.e says:

    re: Night­shade made Kaylin the harmoniste

    I think it was said specif­i­cally that no one can MAKE them­selves or another Harmoniste/Teller, or there would be scheming and battles over it for every Regalia. That being said, he certainly set her up for the possi­bility of being chosen for that role..if she hadn’t left the city and been in a Hallione, she likely wouldn’t have gotten it. I know Night­shade received the crown from within his own Castle, but I think maybe the connec­tion between all build­ings of that type had some­thing to do with it. Or hey, maybe the Green is sentient and just wants Kaylin; idk. He has been involved with Iberi­enne and plan­ning the healing of these Barrani chil­dren for some time, so maybe the Green IS somehow aware of what is connected to it.

    Either way, he doesn’t seem upset that Kaylin is the Harmoniste, despite the danger to her. Maybe he has that amount of faith in her/her abil­i­ties (she HAS done some pretty extra­or­di­nary stuff), or figures if she goes down then as Teller he is likely to as well.. it’s hard to say since he never even broaches the subject of failure (Barrani arrogance?). 

    I can’t wait to see what his deal­ings with Iberi­enne have to do with all of this, and how long he’s been actively attempting to restore these children.

  167. a.e says:


    I get what you’re saying in context and agree, but I’ve never heard the term ‘blue and orange morality.’ What does that mean/reference?

  168. a.e says:


    assume away! lol. i write research papers in anthro­pology on a regular basis so it’s hard for me not to refer­ence every sentence; thank­fully i’m too short on time when i get online here. you defi­nitely have some mad english major skills though, a great ability to pull all of the little pieces together and read between the lines. thanks for the link, i’ll check that out!

  169. JCeleste says:

    FYI new website out for fans: 

    fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com — if anyone wants to co-admin it, I want to create a commu­nity fan site.

  170. a.e says:

    you pulled my leg!.. actu­ally, it’s more enticing that choco­late at the moment, which is saying some­thing for me. can’t promise i’ll be good at it, but i’m willing to try :D

  171. a.e says:

    read the inter­view on that link… if this were a class setting you’d totally get a gold star, Jen!

  172. shauntel says:

    Okay everyone, here’s some­thing I am thinking. I’ve read cast in peril again:) I was rereading the part where Evaarian was calling the fire. The fire stated that the dragon was not air, fire, earth or water, but he implied that the dragon was an element.

    I know this is unex­pected, but does anyone else get the feeling that the dragon may be a part of the devorer/maker. He ate one of her marks just like the devorer/make did in the cast in chaos:))) I think she needs to name it because the fire stated he needed to be contained, and the devorer/maker needs to be contained like anyother element so she needs to name it to contain it???

    Just a thought

  173. Kyra says:

    It would be only possible because they both acknowl­edge (to some extent) that they don’t own her, they don’t get a say in who else she chooses to have sex with. Neither of them will like it, but neither of them will dump her over it or disre­spect her by expecting her to break it off with the other. Severn won’t like it, but it will be better than what he’s had, and he will value Kaylin more than he dislikes Nightshade.

    It helps that what Kaylin and Night­shade have is not romantic, settle-down-with-each-other love — it’s desire infused into a useful-for-other-reasons alliance. Severn, on the other hand, is “home” to her. They are like a pair of species that can coexist in the same envi­ron­ment because they use different resources. Night­shade is not a rival to Severn for Kaylin’s love and desire for home and family; Severn is not a rival to Night­shade for Kaylin’s atten­tion and the visits that occur for mutu­ally impor­tant work and end up being about the two of them, as well.

    They blatantly dislike each other — or rather, Severn hates Night­shade, and I think he’s worried that Night­shade might hurt Kaylin. He sees Night­shade as another threat, like Makuron, who might use Kaylin for his own purposes that are unlikely to be to her benefit.

    Night­shade, mean­while, seems to see Severn as an irri­tant: a lesser Lord than either Kaylin or himself, who somehow manages to enjoy Kaylin’s favor over him. He might resent the fact that Severn will be things that he, Night­shade, won’t offer to Kaylin, but I think he’s less threat­ened by Severn’s pres­ence in Kaylin’s life than Severn feels threat­ened by Nightshade.

    I suspect any three-way arrange­ment they have will involve Severn and Night­shade inter­acting as little as possible — Severn living in the main city and Night­shade in his fief, and Kaylin going to and fro and each of the males ignoring the other’s exis­tence as much as possible. Defi­nitely it won’t be like a Pridelea with Night­shade and Severn sharing Kaylin’s home.

    As for Tiamaris … oooh. I hadn’t thought too much of that; the Dragons seem very insular with regards to sex … although they seem to be a private race in general. I had half a thought of her with Clint and half a thought of her with the Hawk­lord in the begin­nings of Cast in Shadow, but it’s quite obvious the Hawk­lord is more father figure. Clint is a sort of they-could-be-but-they-aren’t, they’re friends but not the with-bene­fits kind (although Kaylin is still unable to offer that type of bene­fits, so there’s that as well).

  174. Kyra says:

    a.e. : Blue and Orange Morality refers to a moral system that has “good” and “evil” like our normal defi­n­i­tions of it, but the values of those things are different from what we’re used to (“Blue and Orange” as opposed to “Black and White”).

    For example, that Barrani will compete with and kill their siblings, and this is accepted and encourage for making strong survivors — that ruth­less­ness is consid­ered more of a virtue than love — or that lying and secrecy and manip­u­la­tion are valued above honesty or truth because of their supe­rior ability to avoid vulner­a­bility — these things tend to go the other way in our own morality, but the Barrani’s prior­i­ties and values make some of what we see as evil things be, for them, good, and vice versa. Not in an “evil is good” way, but more like a “different kind of good.”

    You can find a more detailed expla­na­tion at the TVTropes website, but be warned that it may well take you a few hours to leave.

  175. Kyra says:

    She’s conflicted, defi­nitely. I think not only the history she’s had with sex (Barren) and desire (the unnamed Hawk), but also the dichotomy of being attracted to Night­shade while being horri­fied or contemp­tuous of what he is and does, plus the fact that she spent the first twelve years of her life being utterly terri­fied of him because he’s the fieflord. If she doesn’t have the means to sort out the attrac­tion from the revul­sion, it’s going to be distressing and confusing for her, and it’s rare that anyone figures out how to do that. In real life and in fiction both, most such situ­a­tions have the darker figure become reformed, or the lighter figure dark­ened, or the rela­tion­ship ended, or a continued conflict that wreaks havoc on the lighter figure. Seldom do you see a true, comfort­able “enemies with bene­fits” situ­a­tion, though they do exist.

    Kaylin is still in the confused state, but it’s still early in the rela­tion­ship and she has displayed an excel­lent affinity for coming to under­stand things; she might yet find her center in it. But right now Night­shade is being all sexy and discon­certing at her, and she still has Barren in her memory, and she still has that feeling that she’s way outclassed by Night­shade, and it all adds up to make inter­acting with Night­shade just as discon­certing as trav­eling through the portal into his castle.

    She IS fully aware of it, and that’s the problem.

  176. Jen says:

    While no one can “make” the Green appoint a Teller or Harmoniste, Night­shade knew that if he got Kaylin to the West March, she would prob­ably be chosen as Harmoniste. He admitted as much to her (388). He manip­u­lated events, and Kaylin, so that she would take this dangerous role. 

    I actu­ally think he IS upset about the risk to her life. But he’s in denial, almost as much denial as Kaylin is over her attrac­tion to him. His behavior is counter-intu­itive because of this refusal to admit his misgiv­ings. We’ve noticed that he is notice­ably colder to her in Ruin and Peril than in previous books. There didn’t seem to be any reason for the change in his behavior. I think this is his psycho­log­ical response to guilt, worry, and regret over manip­u­lating and endan­gering Kaylin.
    He’s distancing himself from her because these emotions are unpleasant. He also can’t and won’t do anything about them; this is the price he’s paying to fix the broken regalia. 

    He tells her in Peril that he’s “sacrific[ing] the things of lesser import” to him (108). He’s refer­ring to the people he sold in his fief. But you could equally make the argu­ment that he’s sacri­ficing Kaylin’s regard, and her safety, for the greater goal of fixing the regalia. I don’t think he’s entirely comfort­able with this bargain.

    When she confronts him with his manip­u­la­tion, and that he knew there would be “diffi­cul­ties” with Terrano and the other chil­dren (389), his eyes turn violet and he touches the mark on her face. I checked Michelle’s notes from previous books – violet is not lust, but a mixture of strong, conflicting emotions. I think he feels conflict between his desire to protect her, and his over­whelming need to fix the regalia. He touches the mark for the first time in two books (though he used to touch it frequently) because he’s feeling regret over the deci­sion to endanger her. He is drawn to her, despite his best efforts to remain indifferent. 

    It is after this moment of weak­ness for her that he admits to knowing Terrano, to his goal of fixing the broken story, and that he, an imper­vious immortal, succumbed to (foolish) hope. What­ever Kaylin feels through the mark and name is so strong at that moment that she almost goes to comfort him. She doesn’t fully process what it is at the time; later, when she thinks of it, she real­izes that she felt a “genuine attach­ment” from him (not to her! to whoever it is among the chil­dren that he wants to save) that made him “almost human” (393).

    His expla­na­tion is signif­i­cant because the timing makes little sense. He refused to explain earlier, in Night­shade. That refusal infu­ri­ated and upset Kaylin; she could have retal­i­ated by refusing to accom­pany the group to the West March. But she kept her word. Now that she’s here, cut off by Ferals and other dangers, bound by an implied promise to be the harmoniste (she’s wearing the dress, after all), she can’t exactly back out with any grace. Night­shade has very little incen­tive to open up to her – much less than he had when he was trying to get her to the West March. Yet it’s at this moment that he chooses to confide in her. 

    I think he’s having second thoughts and trying to convince himself, as much as Kaylin. When he made what­ever bargain he has with Iberi­enne, he did not antic­i­pate the Arcan­ist’s bomb, the attack on the Hallionnes, or the Ferals. I think he told himself that he could make some sacri­fices – that he could give up a few people to Iberi­enne, bring Kaylin to the West March – and since he was there, and she was strong, there would be little risk. 

    This is not turning out to be the case. His ally tried to kill her and destroyed her home. His ally’s plans may include killing the Consort, corrupting all the Hallionnes, and letting Ferals and Shadow overrun the West March. There are hints of nefar­ious plans involving unmaking the Barrani them­selves. They haven’t even made it to the heart of the Green and Kaylin is already in great danger. As every­thing spins out of control, I suspect that he is wondering just how much fixing the broken regalia will cost, and if it is worth it.

    Iber­ri­en­ne’s plans, of course, are not Night­shade’s. He defended the Hallionnes, the Lady, and Kaylin from Iber­ri­enne and his feral and Shadow allies. But Night­shade is not an idiot, and I’m sure he can see the connec­tion between his expe­dient agree­ment with Iber­ri­enne and the swathe of destruc­tion that followed. Will he make more expe­dient choices, placing fixing the regalia above every­thing else? If he sacri­fices every­thing to fix the broken story and tainted chil­dren, will that be good or bad? 

    It seems like the regalia is, as he predicted, testing him. Barrani tests often require ignoring the suffering of others. The test of the High Halls requires them to ignore the cries of those who failed, who have fallen into Shadow. So if he can ignore the costs and perse­vere, will he pass the test? Is the will­ing­ness to sacri­fice what you love failure or success?

    It’s to Sagara’s credit that her readers aren’t sure what he will choose, or whether it means success or failure. I keep hoping that Kaylin will find a third path for him, like she did for the High Lord and his brother when they faced another impos­sible choice. She was not able to make that sort of choice herself; she freely admits that she would never have sacri­ficed Steffi and Jade to prevent herself from becoming Makkuron’s tool. Severn had to make that choice for her. The High Lord and his brother also failed – for love, they could not kill each other, even though Barrani survival seemed to depend upon it. Kaylin found a way that allowed them to resist Shadow, not kill each other, and still preserve the Barrani.

  177. Jen says:

    The violet is strong emotions in conflict, not lust (according to some­thing Michelle posted a few years back on one of the discus­sion boards). I am inter­ested in what light blue means – when Night­shade looks at her with his eyes that color, it makes Kaylin uncomfortable.

  178. Jen says:

    When I say she isn’t aware, I mean that she’s in denial. After the kiss in Chaos and the conver­sa­tion with Severn (on the bridge) in Ruin, Kaylin has acknowl­edged that she feels some desire. But there’s a discon­nect between her reac­tions (visceral, imme­diate) and her aware­ness of those reac­tions. As in, she’ll notice some­thing about him, but never consciously acknowl­edge – I’m attracted to him right now. 

    If she doesn’t think about what she feels, it’s easier for her to ignore it.

    When that doesn’t work, when she’s pushed, as in her conver­sa­tion with Severn, she admits it but gives a really unbe­liev­able expla­na­tion. Yes, she’s attracted to him, but only because he’s so untouch­able. She could never hurt him. Right, Kaylin. Because, of course, you don’t know any other incred­ibly powerful, untouch­able super­nat­ural immor­tals you could crush on. Sana­balis, Tiamaris, the Arkon, Andellan, Liri­enne – none of those guys count. 

    She’s attracted to Calar­nenne because she’s attracted to him. She finds him phys­i­cally beau­tiful, he smells good, and she likes his voice and his laugh. And, directly contra­dicting what she told Severn, when he’s vulner­able she finds him more attrac­tive, not less. 

    I don’t think Kaylin means to lie. She just doesn’t know much about herself and her own desires, and she’s very uncom­fort­able with what she feels for Night­shade. I really enjoy her complete unaware­ness of her own reac­tions. Sagara has such a knack for making US aware that Kaylin is sexu­ally inter­ested, while Kaylin is clue­less or pretending not to see. When I wrote that I treat it as a game, I meant to convey that sense of enjoy­ment. Kaylin is such a fun char­acter. I enjoy watching her stum­bles and well as her triumphs.

  179. a.e says:

    totally missed that post, thanks for clar­i­fying. it was an easy mistake, since i think every time we’ve seen it in the books Night­shade is getting all up close and personal with Kaylin.

    i too have been wondering about this ‘light blue.’

  180. a.e says:

    thanks for clar­i­fying! wish i hadn’t missed that post of hers. i feel like it was an easy mistake to connect violet with lust, since every time i can remember seeing it inthe books involves Night­shade getting up close and personal with Kaylin.

    i too have been wondering about this ‘light blue.’

  181. Jen says:

    I never thought about her being jealous! Inter­esting. I assumed the Lady was being protec­tive of Kaylin, since she warned him after that not to enforce the Erenne bond on the journey. But there could even be over­tones of jeal­ousy in that – Kaylin is marked as his consort, a sexual rela­tion­ship. I keep forget­ting that most of what’s happened between Kaylin and Night­shade is not known to the people around them. So they may be making assump­tions that are wrong. 

    I like the idea that some of his feel­ings are bleeding over to her when he sings. Other­wise, I couldn’t under­stand why his voice (and only his voice) makes her want to cry. Is it just so beau­tiful? But if she’s feeling his sorrow and lone­li­ness that makes more sense. 

    She only feels this emotion when he sings – and when he confesses about Terrano and the regalia. Other­wise, he seems to be consciously holding her at a distance. He doesn’t OFFER his feel­ings. In fact, he seems almost unhappy that she won’t take them. I have no idea why. Does he want her to be more Barrani, and take what she wants? Or does he see her reti­cence as another signal that she’s not inter­ested in him? His ongoing bitter­ness about her lack of curiosity suggests the latter. 

    I’d think he wanted to strip away her illu­sions, as you mentioned, but that seems weird. Aren’t Barrani all about decep­tion? Why, then, does he insist on telling her the least tactful version of the truth, and then refuse to give any miti­gating expla­na­tion? He suggests that there’s a good reason for selling his people, but won’t tell it to her. It just seems very unBar­rani of him. That’s why I assumed he was trying to distance himself from her. If he feels less, if she hates him, it’s easier to manip­u­late her and maybe risk her life. But as the danger gets more pronounced, and he spends more time with her, those barriers aren’t really holding. So we get the second half of Peril, where he crum­bles a bit.

  182. Hilda says:

    I have been away from the computer; Now I’m back and there’s so much to comment. I’m going again into the conflict of Night­shade vs. Severn. Although I belong to Team NS, I think Michelle killed any possi­bility of romance for her and NS. His response to her when she inquired about the missing people was so ruth­less, so final, to indi­cate clearly “I don’t care what you think about me”. And so far, that atti­tude hasn’t changed; however, he does have a very caring and loving atti­tude for the Lady (which means he knows what he needs to do if he cares about Kaylin). I don’t think he really cares. I thought he could really abandon the crime life (the only way he could get Kaylin), but he has no interest in doing so. I still wonder why he insisted in having her there in the WM.
    On the other hand, contrarian that she is, this is the first time Michelle has shown that Kaylin has an interest in NS which she has kept very guarded from everyone. Anteela suspected her interest and warned Kaylin very clearly that NS is not likely to have any feeling towards K; she made it clear he is not human and does not feel like K.. Later on in the book, I think one of the Hallionne or the Lady did the same, and N behaved as if he hardly knew her.
    I was left with the strange feeling that any possible romance with NS was over.
    This doesn’t mean that the door is open for S, the friend­ship remains there, but the romantic vibes are completely missing.

  183. a.e says:

    *sigh* my computer sucks. sorry for the multiple posts

  184. a.e says:


    you should check out some of Jen’s posts below!

  185. Jen says:

    An intriguing idea. He could just be similar to the elements. They are very ancient and powerful, and cannot be made safe without being named.

  186. a.e says:

    inter­esting thought, espe­cially as the egg was a result of the buildup on magic for the portal, through which the Devourer came.

  187. Jen says:

    I liked both posts, actu­ally. You are right that Night­shade’s eyes often turn violet when he is up close and personal with her. I wonder if he’s feeling desire and anger. Just because violet isn’t only lust doesn’t mean it can’t be one of the feel­ings he’s having.

    What clued me in was the Consort’s eyes turned violet in this book about some­thing Kaylin did. Unless the Consort has a secret Kaylin crush, it seemed there had to be more to that eye color than simply desire. So I looked it up (Google is a wonderful thing).

  188. a.e says:

    ooooh, google IS a wonderful thing (just found that post). and whaddya know, there’s that word (hope) again! lol

  189. Hilda says:

    The public use of Calar­nen­ne’s neme is one of the misteries in this book. Kaylin, however, at one time used his name in the secret way to force him to respond to her; so, I don’t under­stand now the mystery of the names. The discrep­ancy in age between the Lady and NS does not seem to go to friend­ship; however, the Lady did say that her father and NS had been friends, I think that NS was the Lady’s uncle, also for the Lord of the WM and the Lord of the Barrani. I think that NS lost a child in the old telling of tales, and they all know it, except K and S.

  190. Edward says:

    I still have a couple of ques­tions maybe that maybe you could help me with. 

    If it is true that Iber­ri­enne used the funds to buy people from the fiefs, which I think I can under­stand to a certain degree. Because, it appears that the shadow was able to leave the fief to the other side of the bridge. I believe that the eye-color, 2 sigils and the state­ment that he was not Barrani made it seem signif­i­cant. To me I thought that he was implying that he was using the humans as a test subjects to later on change the Barrani. Then why would it be neces­sary to have Kaylin go to the West March, as a backup plan? If that is true then could this explain why Night­shade was distant toward her as he was hoping that she would not have to sacri­fice herself to fix the regalia.

    Also, another area I am confused about was whether or not she actu­ally changes humanity or was she just learning a new language that she could actu­ally use to change them back to normal. Or, was it implied that she was able to release her “caged” fears/darkness; or was it some­thing more like she was able to tell a story that encom­passed all humanity to set them all free from the “reliving the things that hurt them and keeps coming back up in life/memory” she stated she would spend the rest of her life to fix that. 

    How do you inter­pret these events?

  191. shauntel says:

    Re: Edward

    I dont’ thing that Iber­rion wanted kaylin to go to the west march. Remember he tried to kill her with the arcane bomb, and he called her a abon­i­ma­tion to the High Court. he bought the humans from the different fief lords and sent them to the outlands.

    From what i under­stood (it may be wrong) he was using the humans lifes to try and create letters to creat words. He changed them with what­ever magic he used into the actual letters. He was trying to become a God (Lord of Choas) his new words would not be the ancient words but totally new. 

    The changed humans spoke of two stories, one that Lord Iber­rion told them, and the one that they could as a race remember that the ancients spoke when they created the world and all of the non immortal races. Lord Iber­rion was trying to change that story (alter it),

    The two Sigials that Kaylin saw inside Lord Iber­rion, (seemed to me) was his barrani name and another, maby shadow?? But seems that he was two people (one was trav­eling inside him attached to his name).

    I don’t thik she learned a new language, what she did was to give back to the people what iber­rian took from them when he changed them. She could not return them to what they were but gave them back their indi­vid­u­ality. Remember that the words she touched rose and went to a person and reat­tached. She also pulled from the storm Iber­rion made (what seemed to me) to be there Memo­ries of the different people (the sticks, stones, doll, blanket…ect). When she pulled the1r memo­ries she also remem­bered her past.

    From what I read the people were dead to the Human race, because they were changed, and they could not leave the Hallione as they were. So they are confined inside the heart of the Hallione where they were changed. (she calles them guests)

    Well this was my inter­pre­ta­tion I hope it helps

  192. Kit says:

    This really mirrors my reac­tion. After I finished the book, I just had to sit a while and think, both about the climax of the book and how the book develops Kaylin’s primary rela­tion­ships. My imme­diate reac­tion on the rela­tion­ship side was that a romance between Severn and Kaylin had become much more likely, which left me profoundly dissat­is­fied. Even though this book made it very clear that Severn would be good for her in many ways – far more than Night­shade, at least – it still both­ered me and I couldn’t figure out why. There is the fact that he has seemed rela­tively one-dimen­sional, but he shouldn’t, because there are plenty of intriguing hints about him. Both he and Night­shade are, to some degree, mysteries to the reader.

    In the end, I think what bothers me is that Kaylin does not seem to have any attrac­tion to Severn. She clearly loves him and places more trust in him than she does in anyone else, but there’s no hint of romance on her part. It seems as if she still sees him more as her big brother. She isn’t even all that curious about his past, despite the fact that it’s obvi­ously interesting.

    On the other hand, she does seem inter­ested in Night­shade’s equally myste­rious past. Despite the fact that she knows he is dangerous and amoral, she is very phys­i­cally aware of him throughout the series. If he’s in the room, she’s always aware of where he is, what he’s doing. Like­wise, her avoid­ance of him in previous books seems to be because she finds his pres­ence unset­tling and she doesn’t know how to deal with it. 

    I think we as readers are affected by Kaylin’s view­point. We know Night­shade could be disas­trous for her, but we’re fasci­nated anyway and wonder if there’s a way it could work out. Mean­while, because Kaylin doesn’t pay much atten­tion to Severn, we get far less insight into him, even though he’s on the stage more often.

  193. Megan says:

    Yes, indeed! Virtual conver­sa­tions with real coffee might be the most we can manage, but maybe I’m just assuming that. Wouldn’t it be nice to find out if others were in the area?

    Anyone else curious as to why Night­shade didn’t know about the arcane bomb? Usually he knows all the impor­tant details of Kaylin’s life – and doesn’t mind showing off a bit. Perhaps he was so distracted with preparing for the West March that he wasn’t using the binding to find out what was happening, and his infor­mant (if he has one) failed to inform him. I think that Night­shade would have at least one infor­mant in the Arcanum, so it’d be odd that this person didn’t notice an attack on the female dragon and Kaylin. Which leads me to think the infor­mant was involved.

    Oh, and why oh why don’t we get the rest of Andel­len’s sentence later on the journey? I would sure like to know what Night­shade did (0r didn’t) do because of the arcane bomb!

  194. Megan says:

    Haha, I’ve also been curious how the familiar will respond to Diarmat. He doesn’t seem to take well to people speaking harshly to Kaylin, if the post-bomb report is any indi­ca­tion. Diarmat might have to learn some etiquette himself…

  195. Megan says:

    For the Barrani, brown is approval and gold is surprise/shock.

  196. a.e says:

    you know, i never consid­ered that our view­points as readers were based on Kaylin’s. i mean on some level, i knew this to be true, becasue we only see events/people from her perspec­tive, what we KNOW is what she knows..but i have always tried to look at the story objec­tively, as i would a piece of schol­arly liter­a­ture in my field, and there­fore assumed my reac­tions were just that – mine. it really reem­pha­sizes the author’s talent in allowing the reader to “become” the character.

  197. Megan says:

    Very inter­esting idea. The Arkon did show a shape­less version of a familiar in one of his books, which seemed to indi­cate disaster. Even if it isn’t fully part of the devourer, I think you’re onto some­thing in predicting how and why it might change if it isn’t contained.

  198. a.e says:

    that aborted sentence really killed me too. i read it over and OVER to try and glean more insight..but someone suggested the scuffle outside the Hallione had soemthing to do with Night­shade confronting (not initially attacking, or the Hallione wouldn’t have protected him after­wards) Iberi­enne about the attack on Kaylin/the destruc­tion of her home…and that there­fore Andellan was about to tell Kaylin that Night­shade provoked Iberi­enne – perhaps in an attempt to get him killed/injured for the risk to Kaylin’s life, etc.

    If this is the case, it makes sense to me that a) Andellan clammed up b/c he real­ized too late that he’d given away more than he should’ve, and b) Night­shade wouldn’t want that info so easily given up because it would reveal his level of concern for Kaylin’s phys­ical and emotional state. Andellan wouldn’t be vulner­able for giving that info away becasue he is indebted to Kaylin and could pass his actions off as an attempt to repay that. 

    Honestly, I’m just going with this expla­na­tion for now because I’m not sure what else he might’ve been alluding to, and it affirms my belief that Night­shade cares more than he lets on.

  199. a.e says:

    re: coffee

    there is a new fan site for MSW, the link for which is posted towards the end of this page. we’re trying to get multiple discus­sions running for the CoE series (theo­ries, opin­ions, etc), as well as a place for fans to connect (via coffee or net). you should check it out!

  200. Megan says:

    That makes a lot of sense. In my rereading, I had been trying to figure out how Night­shade’s anger might have lead to his sharing more info on Iberi­enne with the Hawks, but that didn’t work out chrono­log­i­cally. The only barrier to the fight-outside-the-Hallione argu­ment (and it’s not a solid one) is that it was three other Barrani who attacked Night­shade – not Iber. Of course, they could have been supporters, given that Iber. is too canny to get directly involved, and removing supporters seems to be worse in Barrani poli­tics than attacking the person directly.

  201. Megan says:

    It would also explain why a familiar could be espe­cially dangerous to the “owner.” We saw how close to the brink Kaylin was in Cast in Chaos as she tried to coax the devourer into the garden, and maybe the famil­iars have a hunger for true words that causes them to go after their owners’ names rather like the devourer would pick up a trail to new worlds based on names.

  202. Edward says:

    Re: shauntel

    Thanks that does help me under­stand more, but not all. I think once Sorrow comes out it will help me better under­stand the whole better. 

    Also I have decided to make a wikia page to help me and anyone else under­stand all the Races, Char­ac­ters, Places, etc. I hope that this does not upset anyone (espe­cially the author.) You can find it here:


  203. Ruth says:

    Has anyone heard Michelle say what “Erenne” is suppose to mean? I mean kinda sorta like a consort is kinda sorta like wife meaning sex at some point correct?

  204. a.e says:

    yes on the sex part from what i under­stand. i think in the first book it was Evarrim who asked if their new rela­tion­ship had been ‘consum­mated,’ a term i’ve only heard applied to inter­course. there are other allu­sions to it throughout the books, as well.

    but as for a specific defi­n­i­tion, we don’t get that. i thought we’d get elab­o­ra­tion when Tain found out, but no such luck. i’m not sure how much it would help though, because i think it was said that Kaylin would change the meaning of the term anyway (and her being her, how not?).

  205. Kit says:

    It’s wonder­fully subtle, isn’t it? I only just came to that conclu­sion after reading Cast in Peril, when I was trying to figure out why I didn’t find Severn inter­esting. By all rights, I should. After all, he’s dangerous, myste­rious, devoted … and then I real­ized that Kaylin goes out of her way to think of him only as her partner. She gets profoundly uncom­fort­able when she has to think of him as someone who might view her in a romantic or sexual light.

    I got to wondering if Severn’s apparent bland­ness is a result of Kaylin’s view­point. It seems unlikely that indi­vidual with his skills and back­ground would be as wholly focused on her, as one-dimen­sional as he some­times comes off. But that’s precisely what we do to our fami­lies. When we’re young, we see our fathers only as our fathers, not as people with hopes and dreams of their own. I think that’s kind of what Kaylin’s done to Severn. He’s the only family she’s got left and she’s clinging to him in that view and only in that view. To her, he’s the stead­fast big brother/partner, and that’s what matters. And we as readers see him through her lens.

  206. sara volk de garcia says:

    Regarding Night­shade’s touching the mark — I think when he touches the mark, it’s a stronger compul­sion for her to either do some­thing he wants, or to freeze. I began to think this in Silence, when the much-younger Night­shade touches it and she sort of freezes, allowing him to untie her sleeves and see her marks. I think he touched it more often in the earlier books because he was less attached to Kaylin, and didn’t mind using the compul­sion. Now, I think he is more attached to Kaylin (although I agree with other posters that he’s conflicted about this), so he’s not as comfort­able control­ling her this way. (Or possibly, her own control/power has increased so that he has less control this way, now).

  207. Megan says:

    Kit, you’re absolutely right – and it’s star­tling to think it escaped me so long. One of the more inter­esting moments with Severn was when Kaylin followed him to a pub once and the owner tried to warn her off, saying that when Severn was in that kind of mood he wasn’t good company and that he wouldn’t hold a grudge if she simply left. That was one brief moment where we saw Severn through other peoples’ eyes. He seems to have built an intriguing repu­ta­tion with others, but we don’t see it much because Kaylin seldom inter­acts with humans outside of the Hawks. If she ever really meets the Wolves, that might be a chance to become more inter­ested in Severn – not so much for his past but for how others see his present. Other­wise, I think Night­shade will continue to have the greater pull.

  208. ann says:

    Hello, just had a thought about night­shades ‘s family. What if he uncle to the current barrani caselord. This just dawned on me when I was rereading court­light pg 416. I know the consort said he was killed but what if that’s not the case because she said they lost him to power. Maybe this sort of explains the way night­shade and the now consort interacted.

  209. ann says:

    Hi, I just thought that the glass dragon maybe the halloinne of the west march. Remember Wilson said it was lost to them­long ago paraphrasing

  210. Meagan says:

    I’ve always been aware of the point of view the books are in, though I have been curious on occa­sion to see if Severn would get more inter­esting or not. Again I’m not too inter­ested in a romance I just find Night­shade more inter­esting to read about based on his person­ality — followed by Sana­balis and the Arkon. Severn doesn’t really seem to have one… in my opinon even around Kaylin and from Kaylin’s point of view he would have at some point shown a little more anger or some­thing rather than his hinted hidden anger. He might even­tu­ally gain it in the right book, but even in Peril he has every reason to explode at least once and…nothing. Even knowing whose point of view the book is in it is (again in my opinion) boring. I have a feeling of all the char­ac­ters if I met Severn out on the street he would prob­ably be the first person to irri­tate me. I haven’t entirely given up on his char­acter becoming slightly more inter­esting, but I doubt even with a back­story that he would ever become one of my more favorite chrac­ters instead of being at the bottom of the list.

  211. a.e says:

    I think the other Halliones would have recog­nized it as the West March though. And it’s origins are pretty random..there’s no doubt that the familiar is in some way alike to the Halliones, but I think how is yet unclear.

  212. a.e says:


    Re: Night­shade’s fam.

    That’s an inter­esting point. I looked it up (pg.267 on my Nook version) and it’s unclear whether the brother of the previous High Lord was killed by that High Lord during his reign, or before. If it was before, then we can’t be talking about NS b/c we kn;ow that NS was made Outcaste by the High Lord WHEN he was High Lord – he wouldn’t have had the authority before that. If the Consort meant he was killed when her husband/brother reigned as High Lord, then we have more plau­si­bility, espe­cially given Kaylin’s conver­sa­tion with Sana­balis concerning the posi­tion of High Lord/killing to gain that position/starting a war (pg.94). The only other problem I have with this theory is the right after the previous Consort says their brother was killed by power. Kaylin assumes he mustn’t have known what lay beneath the High Halls, and the Consort agrees. I can’t remember if that topic comes up in a conver­sa­tion with NS or not, but I didn’t get the impres­sion that he didn’t know about that…if he didn, Andellan would’ve told him and I think we would’ve seen the reac­tion to that somewhere. 

    Regard­less, I got the impres­sion all around that NS was very close to the family of the High Lord. Since Barrani don’t have “family friends” like mortals do, I think we have to assum,e he was family member of some kind. His famil­iarity with Teela (expressed randomly throughout the books and CiP espe­cially) gives that idea weight.

  213. Jen says:

    We are stuck in Kaylin’s head almost every moment. This perspec­tive draws us closer to her. It makes me care about what happens because I am emotion­ally invested in the char­ac­ters and events, just like Kaylin is. When the Barrani insult her or Diarmat treats her like a doormat, I feel Kaylin’s anger and frus­tra­tion. Her emotional responses make the book come vividly to life.

    On the flip side, this perspec­tive also limits what we see. I have to keep reminding myself that Kaylin’s isn’t the only possible point-of-view. She isn’t always right, and to under­stand what’s happening it’s impor­tant to pay atten­tion and read between the lines. 

    I think that’s why we got the epilogue from the Consort’s point-of-view. For once, we get to see Kaylin from the outside. To the Consort, Kaylin is danger­ously reck­less. She means well, but she’s sort of stum­bling from one near disaster to another. With that much power, and so little knowl­edge or control, it’s a miracle she hasn’t done some­thing cata­strophic. She’s a loose nuclear device.

  214. a.e says:

    she would certainly drive me crazy if i were, oh, pretty much any other char­acter in the books. anyone who can give BOTH immortal races a headache is quite the handful!

  215. shauntel says:

    I don’t think it(dragon) has anything to do with the Hallione. I think that the Hallione of the West March was lost during the Regalia where Teela and the other chil­dren were changed. I wouldn’t be surprised, remember that they said that the Station became a prison to what was contained. If they hallione do not kill unless their guest are threat­ened, or its a shadow. May be it had to seal itself wth the changed childre. 

    I am sure the Lord of the West March Knows since all of the Halliones keep saying that the Hallione of The west March has long been lost to them. 

    The dragon I belive will be named during the regalia and because it can unseal/wake sleepers, (Just thinking and typing) Will be impor­tant in trans­forming the chil­dren or securing the Hallione of the west march.

    Well the above is my train of thought about the subject:)))

  216. Jen says:

    Sara, that’s a fasci­nating idea. I’ve wondered if he is using the mark to control her, too.

    The only thing I remember that contra­dicts this is Teela’s remark that he obvi­ously DOESN’T control Kaylin. Teela said she wasn’t as worried about the mark once she real­ized that Kaylin wasn’t under Night­shade’s control.

    Of course, he could be influ­encing her subtly rather than using her like a hand puppet. Teela tells us that Night­shade is “subtle and unpre­dictable.” He could be manip­u­lating her emotions rather than her behavior. A nudge here or there, not enough to make her or her friends suspi­cious, could still be power­fully effective.

    I will need to look at other times when he touches the mark to be certain. From my (admit­tedly vague) memory, he touches the mark when he feels close to her. Touching it strengthens the connec­tion between them. 

    I suppose at bottom this ques­tion hinges on whether he’s a villain. How much of Night­shade’s behavior is honest, and how much manip­u­la­tion? If he is a villain, then he may have been manip­u­lating her through the mark since book 1, subtly pushing her in the way he wants her to go. If he’s NOT a villain, then he touches the mark to empha­size the bond between them. 

    I lean toward the idea that Night­shade isn’t using the mark to control her behavior. His behavior around her speaks of the impul­sive­ness rather than calcu­la­tion. He avoids touching her for two books, and then suddenly, after she’s attacked, he’s confessing to her and touching her face. That doesn’t suggest manip­u­la­tion, it suggests he was worried about her. All his body language toward Kaylin is charged and protec­tive, not threatening.

    But it’s entirely possible I’m wrong. The ambi­guity – the way after eight books we still don’t know if Night­shade is friend or foe – is part of what makes him such an inter­esting character.

  217. Jen says:

    The Shadows seem to be chaotic, while the rest of the world is ordered. The names (for the Immor­tals) and the ancient stories (for the mortal races) impose Order upon the Chaos of Shadow. But like entrophy, the disorder of Shadow is always trying to escape. 

    So the Ancients built protec­tive struc­tures to contain the Shadow, like the Garden contains the Elements and the Devourer. They built the Towers and Castle Night­shade to keep Ravellon contained. Simi­larly, the High Halls were built over an upwelling of Shadow, to control it. The Hallionnes protect against Shadow as well. 

    The Ancients under­stood that you can’t destroy Shadow. It’s like the primor­dial ooze. Also, just as light cannot exist without dark­ness, or the Elements without the Devourer, the ordered world cannot endure without its chaotic dark side. 

    All this is a long-winded way of saying that I think Winc is right and Iberi­enne made an alliance with Shadow and was cont­a­m­i­nated by it. That’s how he became dual-natured and left two magical signa­tures. What­ever is possessing him could be some­thing (or someone) we know, or some new enemy.

  218. Jen says:

    Natalie, I agree about the stillness.

    Look at Severn and Night­shade’s varying reac­tions to discov­ering what Barren did to Kaylin. When Night­shade reads it in her mind, he’s furi­ously angry and disap­pointed. He wants to kill Barren. He comes close to losing control, and has to turn away for several minutes before he regains his compo­sure. Severn’s reac­tion is completely different. He doesn’t get angry. He doesn’t badmouth Barren. He shows no sign of strong emotion. At the time I didn’t pay much atten­tion – I was absorbed in finally learning some­thing about what happened to Kaylin. It was only later that I wondered at his LACK of reac­tion, when Night­shade was so moved. 

    Of the two of them, Night­shade’s reac­tion was more human. It wasn’t as reas­suring as Severn’s implacable calm. It was over­laid with posses­sive­ness and other nega­tive emotions. But it felt more authentic.

  219. Jen says:

    Sagara mentioned once that an Erenne is like a pet. A cher­ished, valu­able pet, but still an animal. Like what the Lady initially thought Kaylin would be. 

    The Consort has given up that idea. Kaylin is too disobe­dient and inde­pen­dent. I suspect Night­shade has, too. He is still strug­gling with what to replace that image with, but he treats her more as an imma­ture immortal than a lapdog at this point.

  220. Edward says:

    I believe that Night­shade was the nephew of the previous High Lord, and Andellen is his brother, and Teela is his sister. Teela pushed him out to take control of the family money. Andellen, stated lord do not server other lords. Also it seems that Night­shade stated the regallia needs to be finished for the three. This is just a thought.

  221. ann says:

    Wow. What an inter­esting thought. Then is terrano, brother to both night­shade and Teela . Because Teela exclaimed what is he doing refer­ring. To night­shade in the caravan . Who knows but just love these cast series.

  222. Jayme says:

    Kaylin is totally my favorite char­acter, followed by the Arkon, actu­ally. Then Sana­balis, then Night­shade, and on down the line. :) I don’t dislike Severn, either, but he’s just not my favorite or at the top of my list.

    My favorite scene is when Kaylin tells the story to the dead dragon. I loved that so much. I enjoy any scene where she learns more about who she is and what she can do. It’s always such a surprise. Of course, I think my second favorite scene is when Night­shade kissed her. Pretty sure I shouted “Yes!” as I read it.

  223. a.e says:

    was anyone else confused as to how Severn found out? i assumed he just picked up on Kaylin’s reac­tions when he/she/Tiamaris saw Barren, or maybe could feel enough of the emotion through her name to guess at what happened…except Kaylin says repeat­edly that Severn never uses her name. so did i miss some­thing concrete, or was it just infer­ence on his part?

  224. a.e says:

    that certainly helps put things into perspec­tive. i hadn’t real­ized the title was quite that demeaning, i assumed the Barrani wouldn’t consent to some­thing like that because it implies having less power, of being owned.

    here’s my ques­tion now though: if an Erenne is like a pet, why would the Barrani want to kill Kaylin for it? is it because she’s mortal? i got the sense that was part of it, but that there was also more (maybe in that aborted convo w/ Teela & Tain?).

  225. a.e says:

    the familiar IS good at changing things…maybe he’ll breath on them?

  226. Edward says:

    No I believe that Terrano was one of the 12 unre­lated to her. The only reason he was going to let her go was due to as he said she should be with the 12 as she should have been changed like them, but was not due to her mothers plea to the Green, which saved her. Again just a thought.

  227. Meagan says:

    @ a.e

    Both Silence and Chaos are out on loan to a friend right now, or I would be able to give you the book and the page number, but I know in one of them (I think Chaos) when she’s discussing her past she mentions she had Barren and then double checks that he knows what she means. It’s during the conver­sa­tion when she explains she punched the Hawk in the jaw, and how she’s attracted to Night­shade because nothing she could do could touch him. Fairly certain that’s in Chaos, but it could be Silence as well (darn slow reading people I loaned the books too!) he may have guessed before then in Silence, but that conver­sa­tion between them confirmed it.

  228. ann says:

    Oh, I forgot. Terrano just wanted teela because she was one of the 12. Thanks

  229. Jen says:

    @a.e. Severn found out because Kaylin told him at the begin­ning of Ruin (51 – 55). Severn confronts her about what he said to her at the end of Chaos – why he loves her. He asks her why they haven’t talked about it. She explains that she’s afraid he wants to have sex with her. Then she tells him why that makes her so uncom­fort­able. She tells him about Barren and her one abortive attempt to have sex after­ward (when she broke her part­ner’s jaw). 

    Night­shade found out in Chaos (130 – 131).

  230. Megan says:

    I believe Michelle mentioned once that an Erenne is highly esteemed but is decid­edly not equal to the person who did the marking. The mark can give one power over another even if it’s also a sign of protec­tion. This makes a lot more sense to me now that we’ve seen Barrani can have unequal marriages – like Teela’s parents. The father was a Lord, and the mother was not. The father had powerful kin, and the mother did not. Maybe the mark of an Erenne would once have been accepted in these kinds of situations.

    Michelle also mentioned that marking mortals in the “old days” (not as Erenne but other marks in general) was a way of indi­cating to other immor­tals that this person had some value – maybe more value than many fellow Barrani. I imagine that if someone like Evarrim marked a mortal back when it was still allowed, it would be a way of saying to all the lower Barrani that he’d protect that mortal at the Barrani’s expense. Erenne is both the highest and most powerful mark, and I get the impres­sion that it was NEVER intended for mortals. 

    The Barrani fear the mark because part of it’s “protec­tion” is that the marker can commu­ni­cate with, and maybe in some cases control, the marked person from a distance. This would make Kaylin like a very long arm for Night­shade. I think they were afraid that he could inter­fere in events wher­ever she went – espe­cially in the High Halls.

  231. Jen says:

    Yes, the mark is demeaning, or would be if it were given to another Barrani, because it signi­fies owner­ship, or at least domi­na­tion. As Megan pointed out, it can also be used to control someone. So the initial fears of Teela, Tain, and the other Barrani Hawks are that Kaylin would be Night­shade’s puppet. 

    However, when it became clear that she wasn’t controlled, they relaxed a bit. 

    I think I read that there are different marks that can be given. The one he used on Kaylin is the most powerful, and the most inti­mate (the Consort’s mark). Basi­cally, he marked her as his mate in some strange fashion. That’s why Evarrim and Tain asked whether she’d slept with Night­shade when they saw it. 

    He used this mark because it was the only one he thought would be strong enough. I think at the time he marked her, he only knew that she would hold his name and she was very strong. When he met with her in the past, they only spent a short time together. So he was afraid that he would need to protect himself from her (if she held his name, theo­ret­i­cally she could control him). The marking was a way of protecting himself; he used the strongest mark he could because he feared nothing else would serve. 

    It’s ironic; the marking felt like a creepy threat when I read Shadow (I own you and I intend to sleep with you). It turns out he did it because he knew that she would take his name and he wanted to protect himself from her. Things look different when you know more (this could be the motto of this series).

    This doesn’t mean he doesn’t want to sleep with her. Andellen told her that Night­shade would like the mark to someday reflect reality. His behavior has also made this clear. But he isn’t pushing the matter, and he told her wouldn’t, either. So he won’t be drag­ging her off to his bed anytime soon. Trying to entice her there, maybe, but not forcing her to go to him.

  232. Amelie S says:

    If some of you are inter­ested, I have searched for Michelle’s initial answer about the meaning of Erenne (it was in last year discus­sion of Cast in Ruin) :

    Ques­tion :
    Hasn’t it been written than Barrani Lords are not to take human consorts or Erenne? Would that be like an inter­species marriage?

    Michelle’s answer :
    @Wendy: no, it’s not the same. What’s been forbidden, for reasons of Impe­rial Law, is the taking of the Erenne because it almost always implies or involves strong magical coer­cion; it is a type – in the eyes of the Barrani Court – of exalted, and favoured, slavery.
    Slavery is a harsh word, and prob­ably the wrong one – but that’s the reason Teela’s reac­tion was so strongly nega­tive; were a Barrani to bear that mark, it would signify a strong domi­nance on the part of the one who is unmarked.
    On the other hand, Teela has relaxed because she sees no clear change or obvious subju­ga­tion in Kaylin, and she is aware of what it commonly meant among the favoured – and the entirely infe­rior – mortals.

    Question :
    I admit I find this expla­na­tion a little at odds with the source mate­rial, since every time Night­shade has used the word, he seems to inflect it with Great Impor­tance. (Mostly I’m thinking of CAST IN FURY, when she goes with Tiamaris. I was never sure why he makes a point to bring up the fact that she’s the Erenne when she goes looking for infor­ma­tion, but it seemed to mean some­thing. Addi­tion­ally Andellen seems to take it fairly seri­ously, some­thing I wouldn’t neces­sarily expect from a Barrani Lord, even one in service to another Lord, if it’s just slavery, even favored slavery.) But perhaps that has been PURELY wishful thinking on my part. ;) I’d be glad to be disabused of this notion, unless you’re just trying not to spoil future books?

    Michelle’s answer :
    Erenne has weight and meaning, yes. But it denotes owner­ship, even if exalted. Teela doesn’t give a rat’s ass about its weight and meaning, because she feels some terri­to­ri­ality herself, and she gener­ally cuts to the heart of the matter.
    Owner­ship of mortals is not, for someone who left the world centuries ago, in any way unusual. It was one of the ways in which, in a heavily Immortal popu­la­tion, one could guar­antee survival of said mortal: if you harmed the mortal who was claimed, you would suffer. If the person who had marked the mortal was powerful enough, the mortal’s status was hugely elevated, and it was clear that the mortal was of far more import than regular Barrani to the person who placed the mark.
    It was not done lightly, no. It’s not, however, a matter of equality, although in cases where owner­ship is passionate and obses­sive, it’s of course compli­cated because emotions are just like that >.>

  233. Megan says:

    Thank you so much, Amelie! I’d been looking for those comments under the wrong book discussion. 

    Jen, I really like your motto for the series. It does seem to make the act a little less domi­nant when we discover that he thought he was protecting himself from the possi­bility of being controlled absolutely. We’ve since seen that having one’s name taken by another party can essen­tially destroy who you are (in the extreme cases of Maggaron and the Lord of the Green/High Court). It’s a little diffi­cult for a Barrani to conceive of someone holding a name and not wielding it – or even having the least interest in doing so. I find it amusing that Night­shade is now trying to get Kaylin to use the name more. I get the impres­sion of playing hide-and-seek as kids. At first, you run off deter­mined to find the best hiding place, where no one will ever find you. Then, no one finds you, and the idea doesn’t seem quite so bril­liant. Night­shade mentioned in Peril that a time might come when he should fear Kaylin, but he just doesn’t see it happening.

  234. Meagan says:

    I thought Night­shade marked Kaylin because she was marked in his past — a past he knew by looking at her would show up soon. As upset as he was when they met up in his past in Silence I am fairly certain things would have gone differ­ently if she hadn’t been marked and just held his name.

  235. Meagan says:

    Wow the whole two hours of sleep appar­ently really got to me last night O.o I completely forgot about Ruin. Thanks for correcting that Jen :) That book is sadly ‑also- out on loan right now so I am having a heck of a time trying to check anything and going off memory (which is failing when I am running on no sleep).

  236. a.e says:

    Re: Meagan (below)

    Kaylin’s visit to his past did let him know about the mark, but it also gave him the oppor­tu­nity to NOT mark her, thereby changing his future. This is pretty signif­i­cant in my eyes because as a Barrani, he did not like the idea of someone else having his name. He didn’t know for sure, in the past, that she couldn’t exert influ­ence over him via his name/the mark, so by with­olding those things from her he could have ensured his supe­ri­ority int he relationship.

    He didn’t do that. Instead he, a Barrani, will­ingly gave a mortal his name – even knowing what she was, and having known her briefly in his past – and his mark. So rather than this situ­a­tion being one of those mind­bog­gling round­abouts of cause and effect, it was a CHOICE, on his part, to commit to those acts. I think it tells us a lot about his char­acter, and makes me wonder if his initial meeting with her in the past (when he “heard the begin­nings of a Regalia”) initi­ated his hope that Kaylin could someday help resolve the issue of the lost Barrani children.

  237. shauntel says:

    Re: Familia relatinships

    I defi­nately don’t think the blood rela­tion­ship between Andella, Teela, Night­shade is close at all.

    The dynamics between the three Lords it’s obvious that Night­shade is the more domi­nate, there is no way that Night­shade lost to Teela (sorry) in a battle for inher­i­tance of family land. Teela is strong, but Night­shade is older, and stronger (More devious). 

    She said she was older than Andella.

    Remember about cast in court­light what Andella said about the symbol he selected when he did his test of name (it defined his rela­tion­ship with Lord Nightshade)

    The blood rela­tion between, Night­shade, Cosort, High­lord, Lord of West March yes, I think there is one, although I don’t know about being the brother of the previus High Lord.

    I want to know the answer about the blood rela­tions to and what happened to Teela’s Older brothers (she was the youngest and only female).

    What happened to her Father’s previous wives, are they dead or alive Hmmm…? I didn’t think they would allow Teela to inheirot over their sons with the power plays in the High Court. May be that is why she was almost killed by the spell in Cast in Courtlight…:))

  238. Jen says:

    @Amelie S. Thank you so much for the actual quote. I remem­bered it and poked around trying to find it, but even­tu­ally gave up. Her last line, about how Night­shade’s feel­ings for Kaylin are passionate and obses­sive, is part of the reason I think he isn’t manip­u­lating her all the time. His emotions are engaged, and it makes him less capable of calcu­la­tion or manip­u­la­tion. Not that he won’t TRY, but doing so requires him to distance himself from her. 

    @Megan I loved your hide-and-seek simile. It is strange to watch him – now – try to goad her into using his name. When she actu­ally puts some force behind it in Peril (449 – 450), he smiles at her, congrat­u­lates her, and encour­ages her to try harder. He’s almost like a … teacher. It’s unset­tling because he doesn’t seem at all threat­ened or upset, just pleased. Either he has absolute confi­dence in his own strength, or in her inten­tions toward him. 

    @Meagan You are right that another of the reasons he marked her was because when he met her in the past, she was already marked. He’s following the script. I didn’t mention it because my post was already too long, and it didn’t seem perti­nent to the larger theme of the thread: the Erenne bond and power rela­tions between Kaylin and Calarnenne. 

    Most of what Night­shade does has multiple moti­va­tions. On 390 he comes right out and tells her he got her to the West March for many reasons, not just to heal the corrupted chil­dren. He tells her that this reason is just the one she is willing to face. 

    This is one of those cryptic lines that drives me crazy. What reasons could he have that Kaylin doesn’t want to face? It could be either very good or very bad. Maybe he wanted her there because he wants to be with her for longer than a few hours. When you think about it, they have spent very little time together over the course of the series. That idea would discomfit her. Or, he could be conspiring against the High Lord. He could be their enemy. She doesn’t want to face that possi­bility either. 

    @a.e. When you think about Night­shade’s behavior in the first four books, and realize that the whole time he knew much of what HAD to happen, but didn’t know exactly how it would play out, he becomes more sympa­thetic. He’s sort of fumbling in the dark, trying to make stuff happen that needs to occur (her becoming a Lord of the High Court, marking her, her taking his name) without knowing details. Based on his past expe­ri­ences, he assumed she somehow took his name by force. It wasn’t until the Ancient entity in the Castle nearly sucked her in that he real­ized he gave his name to her for protection. 

    I like the view­point that he consciously chose the future with Kaylin in it. In Chaos he tells her that he wanted to see the regalia of her life play out. He wanted to be part of it. I suspect being part of her story gives his very long life purpose. It’s never boring, either, a defi­nite plus since he seems to hate being bored as much as Kaylin does.

  239. Meagan says:

    Now that I actu­ally have time to sit and think (ha!) my thoughts through I think there were several reasons Night­shade marked Kaylin right away when they met the ‘first’ time in her mind. I certainly agree with a lot of what Jen posted earlier 

    1) As I said before she was marked in his past and he knew it was coming up at some point, and soon, based on the fact Severn and Tiamaris were already with her. I am fairly certain he was already curious enough to want to keep his past the same and he remem­bered one of the reasons he didn’t elim­i­nate her on the spot was that mark. He stated he had waited for her that whole time so I believe if he had ever debated changing his past he had made his deci­sion long before Kaylin was born as he mentioned he had a lot to do to ‘prepare’ for the meeting between them even though he had such limited infor­ma­tion to work with.

    2) (Agreeing with Jen here) When they first met she didn’t yet have his name. In his past when they met up he was worried she had just ‑taken- his name and I think it concerned him more tham he will ever admit. I think the mark was a balancing thing of power (to a point given the apparent lack of success on that front) as a ‘well you have my name, but I marked you’. Since it appar­ently can cause the bearer of the mark to be controlled perhaps he was hoping to have the upper hand slightly when she took his name — which she ended up not doing. He gave it to her to save her (As Jen stated). I think he was a bit disap­pointed he had to give her his name after all. 

    3) What little time they met up in his past showed him a lot about Kaylin that possibly made her highly inter­esting in general. She was Chosen, she was with inter­esting compan­ions, he heard the begin­ning of a tale, she managed to change the Tower, she gave him tidbits of infor­ma­tion (the High Court, Fief Night­shade, the sword, the Emperor) and I think as a result he was curious as to what else she was to him in the ‘future’ and possibly began to wonder if she could alter the Tower in such a way what else was she capable of. I actu­ally would not be surprised if Night­shade’s Outcaste status was a result of some­thing he said or did later on based on some­thing Kaylin said to him in that meeting.

  240. Bridgett says:

    I always thought that Erenne was kind of like a Mistress or Hand Madden, a mark that shows posses­sion and owner­ship, even slavery but with the status and protec­tion of those favored but sexual relationships. 

    I find it funny that so many find Severn one dimen­sional and boring and not a good love interest for Kaylin, I have a friend that could very much be Severn in person­ality. He is quiet, intense, obser­vant, moves like a cat, and just meeting him you know he could be very deadly. Yet he is the most loyal, devoted, friend you could ever meet. Under all that quiet reserve is the strongest, most devoted, and intense of feel­ings but he would never burden anyone he loved with those feel­ings if he felt they were unwel­come and would always be so. He would lay down his life and even live for them if needed. He will give with no expec­ta­tion back and wait and watch as long as possible. But when the time comes he will let you go if that is what he feels you need most. There is so many dimen­sions to him it is incred­ible, yet most miss it due to his silent and observing nature. Remember Severn is as strong as a Barrani or very close to it. He as trained as a Shadow wolf by a Barrani Lord who was a wolf. He trav­eled the lands to the West Marsh and killed a Barrani Anar­chist. Do not sell him short because he does not just let go.
    He did not react to the state­ment of the Rape because he knew it would upset Kaylin and she would not get through telling him what she need to say if he did. But she noticed his tension and anger. At this time she can’t deal with changing his status as “Family” and so she avoids all refer­ences to that change. But it could easily be there. And he cares for Kaylin far more then he does himself, or any other thing. It is the only reason he left the wolfs, with the deaths happening again he knew it was time to let her know he’d always been there if she needed him.
    And why is that freaky to people? He was a wolf he was working, he had his own life. He was not a silent stocker out there fallowing her every move. He found her and then checked in on her. After all they worked from the same building. He avoided her only because he knew she was not ready to see him. He felt it was best for her. It would be like you finding a friend on Face­book with an open profile and instead of friending them so they know you are looking at their page you just occa­sion­ally look them up and see how they are.
    Besides Severn has far more depth and is more devel­oped as a char­acter then you give Michelle credit for. It is just as subtle as he is, that is all.

  241. Jen says:

    Does anyone else find it a little insen­si­tive that Severn is pressing Kaylin about sex (in the nicest possible way) just a week after she opened her heart to him about being sexu­ally abused? 

    I’m not actu­ally sure if it should bother me. Kaylin doesn’t seem to mind, except that their conver­sa­tions about it are incred­ibly awkward and unro­mantic. I only started to notice this because I reread these conver­sa­tions in Ruin. It struck me that maybe the scenes are strained because Severn is pushing Kaylin too far, too fast.

    I think readers may not feel this way, since we’ve got whole years between books. The common complaint seems to be that the romantic subplot is progressing too slowly. But from Kaylin’s POV, it’s only been about a year since she reunited with Severn. She faced what happened with Barren in the last few weeks. This is awfully soon to be contem­plating sex, even with someone you love and trust, isn’t it? 

    I don’t fault Severn for bringing it up, although it seemed a little out-of-char­acter. He is usually so passive and accepting of Kaylin’s eccen­tric­i­ties. But once she told him she’d been abused and had signif­i­cant sexual hang-ups because of it, I expected him to back off for a few books. Instead, he brought the subject up again the next day. Then again on their trip to West March. 

    It all makes perfect sense in the narra­tive. He brings it up again when they return to Night­shade, since she promised to tell him about her feel­ings for Night­shade. In the West March, they talk about it because they have to share a bed in the Hallionne. It’s only when I think about the time­line, and Severn’s curious persis­tence, that I feel just a touch of discomfort.

    Up to this point, Severn has seemed unnat­u­rally perfect and unde­manding. Suddenly he is refusing to back down, forcing conver­sa­tions Kaylin would rather not have. Maybe this is him finally asserting himself in a healthy way. It just seems odd for him to choose this time – when Kaylin is so vulner­able – to get stubborn.

  242. Meagan says:

    I defi­nitely think Severn’s picking the worst time to push his luck, but as I don’t really like him as a char­acter I don’t overly mind. Night­shade’s approach is different; he’s more forward in action, but he instantly backs off and he seems to offer Kaylin more (explaining things in detail I doubt any other Barrani would) without asking her anything that would cause her to squirm — or if it does, he backs straight off.

  243. Jen says:

    There was an inter­esting parallel to Cast in Shadow, the very first book, in Peril. When Night­shade talks to Kaylin about fixing the broken regalia, she reflects that once again he can read her thoughts but he is a closed book to her. He reminds her that she can use his name to force the issue. He almost seems to encourage her to do so. She refuses, saying she doesn’t want to take what isn’t offered freely. He scoffs at her squea­mish­ness, telling her it is a mortal weak­ness to want but not take what you desire (389).

    It occurred to me that way back in Shadow, Night­shade expected her to take his name by force. That’s why he marked her the moment he met her – he wanted some hold over her to coun­teract the power of his name. But she didn’t take his name; he gave it to her. He actu­ally marvels over that in Chaos (128 – 129). 

    She was right to refuse to take some­thing he didn’t give will­ingly. Despite the disad­van­tage this places her under, as she is always ten steps behind him, her with­drawal, her refusal, forces him to come to her. It pushes him out of the Barrani mindset that every­thing is a power struggle, and only the strong survive. Her reluc­tance to compel Night­shade forces him to be generous.

  244. Jen says:

    Yes, for while there I thought the two guys had switched person­al­i­ties. For the first six books, Night­shade was the sexual aggressor. Not in a violent way, but he made his interest clear. Severn was the one who would never press his suit, who never took a liberty. Then they learn about Barren and suddenly Night­shade barely touches her and Severn is putting his arm around her and insisting they talk about sex.

    It was funny to read about the switch. But I never quite under­stood if it was delib­erate, or purely coin­ci­dental? Does Sagara want us to see this stuff, or are we reading too much into it?

  245. Hilda says:

    I commented before and it went to another section. I believe it was Kaylin who said Thank You because the Hallione put them together and it gave chance for the 2 of them to become friendly again, enough to laugh like two teen agers.

  246. a.e says:

    re: shauntel
    i agree that Andellan isn’t related, and that prob­ably Teela/NS are not directly related either. i believe Teela did say she is related to the Lord of the Green, there­fore also the Consort/High Lord. there’s no mention of NS being related to any of them, but it’s possible given how close to their family he was/is.

    as for Teela’s siblings. i believe it was implied in a convo between Kaylin/Teela that Teela had survived her brothers in the Barrani fashion, i.e. she killed them. the spell she almost ran into could’ve been set for anyone attempting to help the LotG, or maybe for Teela specif­i­cally (being related to the ruling family, how could you not be a target?). also, because we’re talking about Barrani, I have to guess that her father’s previous wives are now also dead.

  247. a.e says:

    oh, i didn’t think of her reti­cence to push him as some­thing so strategic. i’m sure Kaylin doesn’t think of it that way, but you’re right, it’s defi­nitely a good move in that sense. NS has an amazing ability to adapt, compared to the majority of the Barrani, and I think pushing him outside of his comfort zone and making him more vulner­able, is a good thing for them both.

    that being said, i like seeing Kaylin force herself to use their bond to glean more infor­ma­tion from NS, emotional or other­wise. and i did a major fist-pump when she used his name to push him in CiP. i think this give and take, push and pull, is a major part of their growth as indi­vid­uals and in their rela­tion­ship (i don’t mean roman­ti­cally; but it’s a complex thing and needful of growth and development).

  248. a.e says:

    RE: Brid­gett

    I really like your descrip­tion of Severn, and the personal example you have of your friend. Michelle is very good at making us read between the lines, and we do that with varying degrees of ability. I think NS is more imme­di­ately appealing to a lot of readers because he exposes himself to Kaylin – and there­fore us – more regu­larly that Severn. Our society gener­ally appre­ci­ates that kind of openess, I think, and maybe that is why some view Severn as a slightly creepy, one-dimen­sional char­acter. That being said, there are also fans who like Severn AND Night­shade but NS’s name comes up more because there’s more (from my point of view) to discuss. Part of that is his vulner­a­bility to Kaylin, but also becuase he’s immortal and has spent centuries having this past and making these connec­tions that MSW is constatnly hinting at. There’s just more to go on, so while Severn/his past ARE very inter­esting, it’s a matter of >30 yrs vs. centuriees. 

    My orig­inal point: its always nice to see someone defend Severn without comparing him to NS, or bashing the compe­ti­tion (and vice versa). So thanks!

  249. Hilda says:

    I have been out and have come very late to all these inter­esting discus­sions and topics, which are almost as much fun as reading the books; that’s because Michelle is an expert in keeping the story alive with clues and the readers guessing at every­thing. Here is adding to many issues. I’m now wondering whether the Barrani is a sexless race. Humans, leon­tines, Avian, etc, clearly are not. Even Teela and Tain, I;m not sure.The Consort married her brother whom she clearly loved as a brother. Chil­dren are never seen or heard of and are not alive until the name comes out of a lake. Where are all the other women (excepting Teela), don’t they talk, or fall in love, or walk around preg­nant, All those men and no wives; don’t they go to the West March too. Although I’m all for Team Night­shade, I’m starting to wonder about him too. He clearly can do more if he is inter­ested in K; it seems that on the contrary, he doesn’t want to put any effort in winning her; his interest seems to be only for her to resolve what happened long ago in the WM. He kissed her once, but hasn’t done anything else to win her. I clearly prefer him for a romantic interest; he seems seduc­tive, but maybe he doesn’t know what to do next. He knows he needs to leave his crime life aside, and has no inter­rest in doing so ( maybe if he stops being a crim­inal there won’t be any more episodes,) There’s plenty for him to do legally and make loads of money. The scene when she goes to inquire after the people diss­a­pearing could not be more care­less: “think what­ever you want of me; I don’t care”.Maybe when the series is finishing, he will change. But I can see so many adven­tures with them together if he can make the right moves.
    Severn from the start I consid­ered him a Guardian, placed by the Ancients (?) there. He was brought in to her so called “mother” clearly to protect K until she grew up. Remember his many long and quite conver­sa­tions with her “mother”. Severn was given his chains and trained to use them by an immmortal. I think we still need to see her real mother, who could be NS neighbor in the fief ( a new episode)..It could be that the woman who died was supposed to protect K early in her life. In one of the first books I was left with the idea by N that K looked like his female neighbor.
    I also believed that Torrano was his son, but then changed to brother. I think Cast in Sorrow is because of the reso­lu­tion of what happened to all those chil­dren and those living in the WM, not neces­sarily that a main char­acter will die. It really seems to be a sad old story.

  250. shauntel says:

    RE: A.E./Brigette

    We still don’t know much about the marriges with the barrani, it’s true when Kaylin spoke to teela about the barani not speaking of their parents.

    I just thought of Teelas family with the spell, because I think they also spoke in that book of Teela having her own enemies out side of what they were trying to do with the Lord of the West March

    Brigette, I agree all the way with your state­ments!!! Severne is defi­nitely not weak. Also I noticed that when he pushes the most is when she has seen Night­shade. I think he knows she has feel­ings and is trying to get her to at least think of him in that way. (pull her feel­ings away from nightshade.

    I have to tell you I like Night­shade the most as a love interest. I just don’t agree with the reason’s people choose not to like Severne. Night­shad 60% Severne 40%:))))

  251. Hilda says:

    We have discussed this a few times. I have previ­ously commented that to me N was brother to the previous High Lord and uncle of the current one. The Lord of the WM seems friendly to him. At that time, NS could have been Lord of the WM (with Andellen there) and brother of the prevous Consort, who quietly said his name once. He also has a picture of a woman in his castle who could be her. In C in P, I think the Consort said N was her father’s best friend. I wonder if the schism was due to what the problem is in the WM with all those chil­dren. I know this has been very discussed earlier, but I’m still confused as to why he is openly called Calarnene by all. Still K is the only one that can use her internal calling power to talk to him with his name.
    What resolved many issues for me is that K finally shows personal interest in NS; showed her emotions. So far, Michelle has said a few times that the Cast series is written from K point of view, what we know is what she knows or sees. She has kept her personal feeling very quiet, except when she is angry. Even when he kissed her, we had no idea what she thought about it; she even tried to talk to him and he didn’t let her. In P,first was her conver­sa­tion with Teela, where T gives to under­stand that K is showing personal interest in N, and Teela is warning her not to. Later on in the book is K herself that is thinking about him. For the first time she is real­izing N is not so bad. In fact, this is the first book he has been kind of rough with her. He has been tender, caring, helpful, protec­tive (even against the bad dragon), and she has been the one who seemed ungrateful. This is the first time she recog­nizes that he has done a lot to help her. Also, for the first time, I think N noted it, that she has some personal interest in him, but doesn’t like what he is doing. He is sort of: I’m Barrani, what do you want me to be. She is mulling these thoughts. He seemed to be warning her off. This is kind of incon­sis­tent, but it came accross as a big change in both their attitudes.

  252. Hilda says:

    In last book,I remember a conver­sa­tion where appar­ently K was willing to go to bed with S if that was what he wanted; but it was a kind of pay off for all his help. It seemed silly of her; like what do you get out of our rela­tion­ship; wasn’t friend­ship enough. He told her clearly that it wouldn’t work; he told her of rela­tion­ships he had observed and all ended bad. That’s why I think she has now romantic interest in N and, until now, she has kept her feellings very hidden, not even thinking about it.

  253. Hilda says:

    I may have missed the following issue and someone can clarify and point me to the page: the rela­tion­ship between the Outlands and the West March.
    The people who disap­pear from the fields, the ones who were sold, they went through special doors created by Barrani Mages, to the Outlands (according to Tara).
    Those mages later were and had those missing persons in the way to the WM.
    NS told K clearly not to get near that door, that it was very dangerous. According to Tara, the Outlands were the very oldest way to travel between the ancient cities which were detroyed. Was Tara mistaken? Were the spaces the same? Was the West March one of the ancient cities?
    I was very excited when I read about the Ancient Cities and thought that would be a great play­ground to keep the Cast books running. Imagine K, S, and N inves­ti­gating some of the ancient cities with her unnamed crystal dragon (familiar). What would the Keeper say of those cities and of the tiny dragon?
    I want more adven­tures in the ancient cities. In one of the first books, the Ruins were mentioned; now these ancient cities are mentioned.

  254. Jen says:

    I don’t think Severn is weak either. He’s a skilled Hawk/former Wolf. He has tremen­dous mental control – not even the Hallionne can read his thoughts. To survive what he had to do in the fiefs and remain sane would take tremen­dous psycho­log­ical resilience, as well. If Kaylin has scars from her terrible child­hood, think how much damage Severn must have suffered. 

    It does worry me that he doesn’t talk about it, even to Kaylin. Kaylin real­izes in Peril that talking about her own traumas, humil­i­ating as it was, is what has finally allowed her to face them. The whole journey to Tara’s tower in the past was one long therapy session for Kaylin. Inter­acting with the tha’alan was another. She’s working out her demons by naming them, and finally talking about them. 

    Unless Severn is seeing a shrink on the sly, he isn’t doing similar work. He’s got to have at least as much damage as Kaylin. He didn’t serve Barren, but he did go from killing Steffi and Jade to becoming a govern­ment assassin. He has to have some serious dark­ness buried under there. But it all seems to be hidden behind a perfect, self-effacing, uncon­flicted exterior. 

    This perfect, unruf­fled surface is vaguely disqui­eting knowing how much must be hidden in the depths. It’s like diving into a very dark pool where you can’t see more than a few inches into the water. You have no idea what’s lurking under­neath, or how deep it is.

  255. Bridgett says:

    Funny thing about the whole love interest thing. I hope she chooses no one. I person­ally love the series because there is no sex in it but the true conver­sa­tions that would have to have a rela­tion­ship. NS was very upset when he saw what was inside K. But was that because of what happened, because he did not stop it. Or was it more barrani of him, was it because he was not getting what he wanted from K? Was it because he still was unable to truly finish his mark on her by making her truly Erenne? Several Barrani have said that until he has “truly claimed” her she is not truly his.
    But Severn is equally upset. And K notices it though it is very subtle. He is most likely to be upset because she was hurt and he did not stop it. You could argue that he caused it by killing her girls. And because it hinders her being able to change her percep­tion of him. But his “pushing” for sex as Jen put it. I never saw it that way, I was assaulted as a young adult and then again a year ago, I found with my husband that we had to discuss things very frankly and he had to push me out of my comfort zone to get me to see sex and myself differ­ently. Severn is just trying to get K to face her past and see him differ­ently so she can heal. Weather she chooses him or not may not be his priority, her healing is. He does not want her with anyone else because she has always been what he lived for. When he took her on as a child she became his every­thing, keeping her alive and as happy as he could was his life. Staying alive himself he did for her even at 18 killing her chil­dren, going to NS, leaving the fief and becoming a wolf to be able to be close. Now he is an adult and he has his own life and if he must he will let her go but only if she makes him. He will even hurt her to make her grow and learn if he must and now that she is facing the rapes he is trying to make sure she does not just stuff them back in the box and never look at them again. He is not pushing her for sex. If he was he’d have tried some­thing. Instead he makes her look at the possibly and then tells her only when she is ready would it ever happen. 

    Any way enough about them.… I believe I know who K will end up loosing from the regalia. We will lose Teela. Not because she dies.… nope that is too easy.… But loose her we will.… she will finally be fully unchanging, fully her name, fully Barrani and so she will no longer be the Teela we know. Just as the “changelings” or the chil­dren that she was with for her first regalia will be whole so will she. And then the Hawks will loose all the Barrani Hawks… Because if I have not read things wrong all of those Barrani Hawks are Teela’s fallowing of Barrani. And when she is whole and leaves to be part of the court as she should then they will leave to serve her there. 

    As for the Sexes of the Barrani… I think they are both there. The ones pointed out are usually male. But all the ones she regu­larly meets are Lords and since they are addressed by that title we never know if they are male or female. The only other ones we hear of are always referred to as Barrani Hawks, so once again we get no gender relations.

  256. Jen says:

    Hilda, I don’t think the Barrani are sexless. Nor do I think Night­shade is uncer­tain whether he wants Kaylin. I think we see two things going on that are related. Sagara has admitted in the past that she doesn’t feel like she writes the romance part very well (I guess it isn’t some­thing she’s comfort­able with). So we’re never going to see a series from her with lots of sexu­ally explicit mate­rial. I don’t think she’s comfort­able writing it, and I don’t think it even inter­ests her. Perhaps because of this, perhaps because it simply seemed logical that someone growing up in Kaylin’s circum­stances would have been sexu­ally abused, she chose a protag­o­nist with serious hang-ups about sex.

    Since we see the action through Kaylin’s eyes, we share her reti­cence about sex. She isn’t that curious – she would prefer not to think about it – so we don’t hear all the juicy gossip. She ignores sex as much as she can. 

    Sagara makes it clear that there are sexual rela­tion­ships in the series, among the Barrani as well as the other races, despite Kaylin’s shyness. Tain asks her why she slept with Night­shade when he first sees the mark. Teela and Tain are obvi­ously lovers. Evarrim asked if she’d slept with Night­shade, too. So the Barrani are having sex, Kaylin is just doing her typical ostrich maneuver and pretending she doesn’t see it. We haven’t seen Barrani chil­dren, but I think that’s because there aren’t many of them (they repro­duce slowly). 

    I don’t find Night­shade’s slow courtship that surprising. It’s only been a year since he met her, and they spend very little time together, most of it when they are in peril of death. There hasn’t been much time for wooing and romance. Kaylin would also likely not respond well if he pressed too hard. Through the mark, he can tell a lot about her reac­tions and tailor his own responses accord­ingly. So when she feels close to him, he touches her, kisses her. When she’s angry, he backs off. When he finally learned about Barren, he backed WAY off, and he hasn’t returned to his former level of inti­macy with her. He’s giving her space and time. As he tells her, he can wait. 

    Night­shade is the only person (so far) that Kaylin has defi­nite sexual feel­ings for. That may be why many readers like him with her so much, despite the obvious obsta­cles to any rela­tion­ship. For the normally prudish Kaylin to finally respond to someone (anyone!) was so signif­i­cant that we all took note.

  257. Meagan says:


    I’m not sure anyone sees Severn as weak or one-dimen­sional. I don’t. I am well aware of all the details that point him out as a char­acter that has a huge back­ground that could be (and prob­ably is) very inter­esting. And again…I could care less about a romance. When­ever I say I prefer one char­acter over another it’s strictly that I prefer said char­acter over the other one. Night­shade wins overall because he is just fasci­nating imo; Sana­balis is second for being just down-right awesome, and the Arkon is third. 

    I’ve met people like your friend — I’ve prob­ably even consid­ered some of them friends at one point or another in time. However to read about he is annoy­ingly perfect. He gener­ally does every­thing right (yes, I know, Kaylin’s PoV), he seems to know about every­thing — or he instantly goes out and learns it, he manages to survive what other humans would not, he never seems to irri­tate or disap­point at all, and he seems to impress everyone. That’s great and all, but it makes for a char­acter who is slightly boring (to me and the select few people I know who I managed to get to read the series). Even killing the girls is ‘justi­fied’ by everyone and forgiven. If it was a fairy-tale he would be the Prince Charming and I loath that character/persona with a passion because even at their worst there’s always the ‘oh well, there is a reason it’s okay’ and that just drives me, person­ally, insane. He is a likable char­acter, he is a strong char­acter, and he is good for Kaylin in a way, but he bugs me. If he ever gains a rather large fault that is not instantly dismissed by ‑everyone- around him I might like him better, but he’s just…I don’t know how to explain it prop­erly, but as inter­esting as he should be with the limited history we know he has the oppo­site effect on me. 

    And just to go slightly off-topic and prob­ably cause a few people to scratch their heads…I will add the other thing that drives me up the wall in a char­acter or a RL person is the forever happy syndrome. I know, odd, but really…I swear some of them are just way too happy.

  258. Jen says:

    Brid­gette – good point about how both male and female members of the court are called Lords. They are prob­ably a mix of male and female Barrani.

    I worried we might lose Teela, too. Now I think the sorrow refers to what­ever happened to the tainted chil­dren, what­ever is eating up Night­shade. I think her moth­er’s prayer did work, and Teela’s name was protected. She isn’t tainted. Her expe­ri­ence did change her – being a pawn of the High Lords prob­ably made her less likely to want to hang around court for centuries playing games for power. I assume that’s why she joined the Hawks. But it feels like the big reve­la­tions about Teela are over. They are nearly at the West March; the regalia and Iber­ri­en­ne’s plots (he escaped at the end of Peril, remember) are going to occupy much of the next book. I could see her being endan­gered by Terrano and the other chil­dren, but I hope it won’t cost her her life.

    I see what you mean about Severn pushing Kaylin for her own good (I am very sorry to hear about your ordeal, too). That’s why I am still of two minds about whether his behavior is a little too pushy. I will say that Severn is not her husband, nor has he ever had sex with Kaylin. So they don’t have that past close­ness to justify his pressing her. He is asking a lot more than your spouse (who seems to have been wonder­fully supportive) asked of you. This is the first time she will ever have sex (other than Barren’s abuse). So it’s a bigger step for Kaylin. I under­stand her hesitance. 

    Severn’s stub­born­ness may be good for her – or it may be too soon. We won’t know for a while. It just struck me because his behavior was out-of-char­acter. Usually he is very passive and accepting of Kaylin’s quirks. He is self-sacri­ficing, almost to a fault. Now he suddenly develops a spine, and about the thing that makes Kaylin most uncom­fort­able. It just seemed strange to me, in retro­spect. Since things are often not what they seem in this series, I thought I should at least point it out. 

    I do think Severn wants Kaylin. He isn’t just pushing her to heal her. If he were, he wouldn’t mind if she slept with someone else, as long as it was good for her. But he’s badmouthing the other candi­date (Night­shade) every chance he gets. This does not suggest complete unselfish­ness on his part. I don’t fault him for this; in the past he has seemed unbe­liev­ably perfect. He needed some flaws. 

    In fact, I wonder if we (and Kaylin) have placed Severn too much on a pedestal. There are clear indi­ca­tions he’s jealous of Night­shade. That may be why he’s pushing her on having a sexual rela­tion­ship. He admits that he killed Steffi and Jade because he couldn’t give her up, not to save the world. Just because he’s a great guy doesn’t mean he’s perfect – and seeing him this way is making him too predictable. Sagara has said that her human char­ac­ters are not white knights or devils. They are a mix of good and bad, just like real people. So if we just focus on Severn’s stellar qual­i­ties we are distorting the character. 

    Even Night­shade has his good side. His fury at what Barren did to Kaylin endeared him to me. You point out that Night­shade may have been angry about Barren not because Kaylin was harmed, but because now she can’t respond to him. This is certainly possible. But I think if that were the case he would have pushed like Severn is doing. But he isn’t. He told her he would wait, and he has. Since he learned about Barren, he has been notice­ably hands-off with Kaylin. He is giving her time to recover.

  259. Jen says:

    We defi­nitely need a map, don’t we? I got the feeling that the Outlands were outside the Empire. I even wondered if they were much more afflicted by the wars between the Dragons and the Barrani, and so had patches of Shadow everywhere.

  260. Bridgett says:

    Oh, Severn also wants K as his partner in every way. Yes I agree 100% with that. He is not being totally self­less in pushing her. No way no how. And yes he seemed very passive before. But as we all keep saying, he’d just barly gotten back into her life after having pretty much lost her for 7 years. He wasn’t going to push anything until he knew what she felt for him. Now that she has addmitted loving him he will start going more out on a limb with her. It is part of who he is, he can very much be the bad guy, it is why he was sent to the WM to kill a Baranni Lord. (anyone besides me think he has already met the Emporer?)

    As for NS there are many reasons Severn would hate him. One he is every­thing Severn is normally sent to kill. He was the one the fought every day of their child hood to keep away from and say alive in his land. He is the one who told him he would have to kill K’s chil­dren and beat him up while doing it. (any one else notice that Severn at 18 was able to get away form NS tails when he went back to the home he shared with K and the girls. NS mentions having lost him but not worring about it because he figured he had time to find him again but then he and K disapiered and it took 7 years for them to show up again.) He as no Human morals and stands for every­thing K hates yet she has addmitted that she is sexu­ally attracted to him. Why wouldn’t Severn hate him. 

    I think NS is hands off with K for the very reasons you said but not for the same base reason. He is as he said immortal, he has forever to wait for her. He has no reason to rush her, no reason to push, no reason to not wait. He is secure in his power and his hold over her. He has nothing to fear from her. To push would be to lose her in his case, he has too many things against him. At first I thought his fury was because he cared about K. But lately I’m not so sure. Everyone keeps saying how he does not try to romance her or sweeten the deal. He is Barrani, why would he lower himself to make any cons­es­sion or change, for a mortal. He wouldn’t not for any reason. It would get him killed. We keep forget­ting he is not human. He will not act like one. But K keeps thinking he should be more like her. On the other hand he keeps trying to get her to be more Barrani. Like the whole trying to get her to use his name to minip­u­late him. But forcing people to do things goes against every­thing K stands for and tries to do. The only times she has done so has been to kill the female dragon and then with the Barrani in CiP. And both times it was to save many more people and that person as well. 

    I think what NS is really waiting for is for K to become immortal. After all the Outcast dragon when he met her said “you are still human!!!” as if he had expected for the words to make her immortal. Though other immor­tals have told her there is no way to make a mortal immortal I think others do not beleive that. And the way station did tell K that the true words of the regalia make things unchanging. 

    Any thoughts?

  261. Bridgett says:

    On this one I thought the outlands were kind of like the place between the worlds. More like a spacial tunnel created by magic between the old cities and older protec­tions made by the Ancients. ( by the way I am a terrible speller so I am very sorry if I screw things up and it’s hard to read) I thought that they were made by the ancients and used as ways or short cuts to get to places. Simmilar to the ways between the worlds, where the Devourer was. 

    And the only times I have heard the ancient citys mentioned, they are talked about as ruens most of them popu­lated by shadows. I do not think they are really any of those citys left at all, just pieces left from way too many wars.

  262. Bridgett says:

    I think the dragon ate it’s name right off K. But that she has to find that name and own it to keep him and make him truly her. It is the only way to “contain” him, other wise there is no way to stop him when he does things. I also think it will be the only way that he will be able to “talk” to K. He is elemental according to the way stations. If that is true than he, like the other elements will talk in the language of the ancients and the only way she really under­stands those words is in her head. The only way she speeks them is by acce­dent. And when it comes to names she can’t speek them at all. Every time she has called NS or the others she has said that her mouth formed the word and her body and mind said it but no sound ever came out. And the same happend with Severn when he tried to say the name she gave him.

  263. Bridgett says:

    Meagan, I do not think that the true name is the same name. It may meen the same thing but remember that the true names are in the ancient language. K as said many times that she can not under­stand the language that trying to say it is actu­ally imposible because human vocals are not made to do so. That when she does say true name she knows what it should sound like in her language and she feels it that way but the saying of it she is never able to do. It is never vocal­ized. It only is ever said in her head. In CiP it said that Consort was using the publicly okay version of NS name. 

    When K gave Severn her name he tried to say it but it did not get vocal­ized then either. It seems to me that a human can not actualy say the true names. True words yes for K. because she said the one that was the towers name.… or did she actu­ally vocalize it or was it just in her head? I don’t remember. All the other times she uses true words they are allways in italics which meens she is only thinking them. The only ones I know for sure she has actu­ally said are the elemental names. At least I think she actu­ally vocal­izes them. 

    Any one else notice that the names are never said out loud?

  264. Bridgett says:

    I wonder about this too. I do not know. Though it almost seemed as if what ever he did to change himself it was similar to what happened with the Chil­dren from the botched regalia.

  265. Joanna says:

    This is really an amazing thread! I agree that Kaylin prob­ably only sees it because of her magic, but it could also be due to two enti­ties working the magic — perhaps the mage and a shadow mage. 

    On our fan website, we have a chat room and lots of discus­sion boards, if you’d like to check it out: http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com.

  266. Joanna says:

    Hmmm.… that would fall under what happened to the mage that tried to escape Tara, right, in CoSilence?

    On our fan website, we have a chat room and lots of discus­sion boards, if you’d like to check it out: http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com.

  267. jccfanadmin says:

    I don’t remember the names ever being spoken aloud. I’m copying this over to our forum, hope that’s okay with you.

  268. jccfanadmin says:

    Ooh this is a cool point! I’ve just created a new discus­sion board for this:‑1/#comment-132.

    Thanks for the idea of a map, Jen! It would be cool to see if we could create one, and then post it under our References/Glossary page (http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com/​g​l​o​s​s​a​r​y​-​r​e​f​e​r​e​n​c​es/).

    This would also be a cool thing to hash out over our chat room. (http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com/​c​h​a​t​-​r​o​o​m​-​f​o​r​-​m​s​w​-​f​a​ns/)

  269. jccfanadmin says:

    Jen and Brid­gett, may I please have your permis­sion to transfer over this whole string to our fansite for Michelle Sagara West fans? I’d have to edit it into the different discus­sion board cate­gories, but it would be a lot of fun and provide a lot of insight to share these points. 

    On the whole Nightshade/Severn point, there has been some discus­sion in our forum as to whether a romantic rela­tion­ship is possible, and where Kaylin stands on the mortal-immortal line, and it would be fasci­nating to add your thoughts. (You can see that page on (http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com/​d​i​s​c​u​s​s​i​o​n​-​b​o​a​r​d​s​/​p​a​i​r​i​n​g​s​/​s​e​v​e​r​n​-​a​n​d​-​k​a​y​l​in/)

    Our website is http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com if you want to check it out (a.esther and I co-admin it.)

    Thanks for your consid­er­a­tion! (You’re also invited to use our chat room, if you’d like to talk “in person” about this.and other things — the link to that is http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com/​c​h​a​t​-​r​o​o​m​-​f​o​r​-​m​s​w​-​f​a​ns/

  270. jccfanadmin says:

    Jen and Brid­gett, may I please have your permis­sion to transfer over this whole string to our fansite for Michelle Sagara West fans? I’d have to edit it into the different discus­sion board cate­gories, but it would be a lot of fun and provide a lot of insight to share these points. 

    On the whole Nightshade/Severn point, there has been some discus­sion in our forum as to whether a romantic rela­tion­ship is possible, and where Kaylin stands on the mortal-immortal line, and it would be fasci­nating to add your thoughts. (You can see that page on (http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com/​d​i​s​c​u​s​s​i​o​n​-​b​o​a​r​d​s​/​p​a​i​r​i​n​g​s​/​s​e​v​e​r​n​-​a​n​d​-​k​a​y​l​in/)

    Our website is http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com if you want to check it out (a.esther and I co-admin it.)

    Thanks for your consid­er­a­tion! (You’re also invited to use our chat room, if you’d like to talk “in person” about this.and other things — the link to that is http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com/​c​h​a​t​-​r​o​o​m​-​f​o​r​-​m​s​w​-​f​a​ns/)

  271. Jen says:

    Oh, yes, Brid­gette, you bring up lots of good points. I agree that Night­shade believes Kaylin might become immortal. After all, he says he can wait and Severn can’t. Since Severn is only 5 years older than Kaylin, this suggests that Night­shade is willing to wait until Severn is dead. At that point, a mortal Kaylin would be very elderly or dead herself. But an immortal Kaylin would not be.

    It is possible, of course, for mortals to become immortal. Maggaron would not exist, other­wise. He became immortal by taking part of Bellus­deo’s name. It worked even though her name was imper­fect (it was a substi­tute for her true name given by shadow). 

    Kaylin already has a true name of her very own, one straight from the lake of life. In theory, she should have a far easier time becoming immortal than Maggaron. I don’t think she’s immortal yet. But as she continues to spend time with immor­tals, and receives more and more expo­sure to powerful, ancient magics, it looks like she will end up as some­thing more than mortal. The most recent clue is actu­ally at the end of Peril. The Lady has just decided that she can prob­ably believe in Kaylin’s naive, hopeful view of the world, at least for the short time Kaylin will live. She keeps stressing how short that will be – so much so that I nearly yelled, Fore­shad­owing! when I read it. It’s like the couple promising each other they will be together forever – right before war breaks out and they are sepa­rated. You can almost see the wheels of the plot moving to mock their words. The Lady’s emphatic state­ment of Kaylin’s mortality felt like she was tempting fate in the same way. 

    Kaylin’s under­standing of mortality is an essen­tial, endearing part of her. She grasps the impor­tance of the humans Iber­ri­enne is ignoring in the Hallionne, and manages to defeat him by seeing and returning their simple words (the stick, the doll) to them. But I am sensing that she is MORE now. She under­stands mortals and mortality. But she is also coming to under­stand immor­tality. She spends time in the elemental garden, she befriends dragons and Barrani, she touches the tha’alan. These are all immortal influ­ences. They broaden her perspec­tive. Some­times I think Kaylin is being groomed to be an emis­sary from mortals to immor­tals – a go-between. Someone to remind immor­tals that mortals are not animals, just short-lived, fragile people. Someone to explain the myste­rious motives and ways of the immortal races to the mortal ones. Someone to heal the frac­tured stories and rela­tion­ships of the various races.

    The regalia could advance this process consid­er­ably – you are undoubt­edly right about that. A story so powerful that it changes everyone it touches – and she isn’t just listening, she’s inter­preting – is going to mark Kaylin forever. This is certainly one of Night­shade’s various reasons for getting her to the West March. 

    I see we’re mostly in agree­ment about Severn and Night­shade. I assign more jeal­ousy to Severn’s behavior. He was not so fixated on Night­shade’s badness until Kaylin told him there was a chance for him but she was also attracted to Night­shade. Once he knew it was a contest between them, he became very insis­tent on pointing out Night­shade’s defi­cien­cies. There was no love lost between them before, but jeal­ousy has defi­nitely turned the rivalry up a notch. 

    What’s inter­esting is that (as Meagan wrote earlier today) Kaylin is starting to notice that she doesn’t hate Night­shade right at the time she should be absolutely furious with him. Before, she and Severn were united in their reasons for hating the fieflord. He made their child­hood a misery, and they have every reason to mistrust him now. But her hatred keeps flag­ging. Her friends have to keep reminding her to keep her distance from him. Even with their reminders, she isn’t as distant as she’d like to be. Kaylin isn’t mooning over Night­shade; it’s simply that she no longer wants him dead. She’s seeing human, emotional sides to the monster. 

    He could be tricking her, as Teela suggests. We only know what Kaylin knows, and she can’t read Night­shade’s mind. But the fact that he’s encour­aging her to do so, trying to make her read him, is odd behavior if he really is deceiving her. Wouldn’t he be giving himself away? I believe that he’s encour­aging her to be more Barrani, just as she’s trying to make him more human. It seems to me that they’re both right – they are butting heads and changing each other. Kaylin is learning to be ruth­less if she must. Night­shade is thawing out and revealing real emotions. Their conflict is enter­taining and it makes both char­ac­ters grow. 

    You are right that we shouldn’t forget that Night­shade isn’t human. He went out of his way to remind her of it when she confronted him about the missing occu­pants of his fief. He laid out all his contempt for human weak­nesses, like love. It was almost like he was throwing down a gauntlet. This is what I am, I won’t change for you, you don’t control me. And I won’t lie and pretend to be some­thing else to cozen you. It was all perfectly hateful and designed to infuriate. 

    The problem with his behavior, to my mind, is that it was stupid and unBar­rani. If he’s trying to manip­u­late her, why make no effort to lie to her about some­thing he knew would anger her? Why not at least try to preserve the lie until he got her to the West March? Barrani are all about decep­tion, so conceal­ment should be second nature. At the same moment he’s asserting how very Barrani he is, he’s refusing to lie to her. I’m not saying this makes it all better. It just makes no sense. His whole behavior in that scene is confusing. When I get that confused in a CoE novel, there’s usually some­thing I don’t know now, but will find out later, that will explain it.

  272. jccfanadmin says:

    Ah, thank you! I thought I was weird for being slightly distrusting of Severn. (You can see the comments on our fan website.)

    Would it be okay with you if I trans­ferred over your comments to our discus­sion boards? 

    The web site is http://​fansofmichelle​sagarawest​.word​press​.com if you want to check it out.

  273. Meagan says:

    Yep, I do know that ;) That’s why I am confused. I know it’s in the ancient language, and I know that no one else hears it if the holder attempts to say it out loud. What I was saying though was that for a while in the books it was implied (imo) that Night­shade’s true name was Calar­nenne (sp?) — as in no one else ever used it and the LotWM said in Court­light that he not only remem­bered Night­shade, but spoke his name. And yes, I did catch the part in CiP where Kaylin under­stood it was the ‘accepted’ form of his name…but then again that ‑als0- seemed out of place. Kaylin is mortal, curious, and not the best at poli­tics so ‑why- did she magi­cally get ‑that- change and not wonder at all where Night­shade came from? Kaylin’s true name is neither her orig­inal name or her current (it’s almost a combi­na­tion of the 2) so up until ‑this- book it seemed Calar­nenne was Night­shade’s true name in the ancient language in a way we could under­stand it. Now…that image is gone/lost and I am slightly confused. It’s like the rules changed, which is fine, but it takes me a while to adjust.

    It’s not the first time some­thing’s gone and changed on me like that. The Tha’alani in books 1,2, and 3 seemed to be able to read minds of anyone in the room. In Fury, however, suddenly it’s only through direct contact (which makes more sense imo, but it still throws me).

  274. Kirsten says:

    I thought Brid­gett’s post was bril­liant. I agree wholeheartedly.

  275. a.e says:

    Agreeing with Brid­gett here on the Outlands, I too perceived them to be an “in-between” world in which the normal laws of nature are bent – or totally different. One of these laws is distance, which is why Barrani have used them to travel between the Halliones. But it seemed to me also that they don’t under­staned the Outlands very well because they cannot exist in them; when they travel there it is on the safe roads made by the Halliones. Wilson even told Kaylin she could survive there, but that the Barrani/Humans could not, which supports the idea that the Outlands were a creation of the Ancients – maybe partic­u­larly the Lords of Chaos, given that the Shadow crea­tures trying to get to the Barrani didn’t seem to have a problem exiting in the Outlands.

    And yeah, the only city mentioned with strong influ­ence by the Ancients is Kaylin’s city, specif­i­cally Ravellon.

  276. shauntel says:

    Re: relationship/outlands

    I think Severne really hates night­shade because of the time when he was 18 and he went to speak with him, and he wasn’t given any answer but to kill steffie, and Jade. So his inter­ac­tions with night­shade are different then his feel­ings as a wolf on the hunt. Because really folks I think he had to kill a part of himself in order to survive mentally, maybe that is why his mind is so quite. Control is a very neces­sary part of his life.

    Night­shade, IS BARRANI. He is old he will not change easily. He is use to control. Even in his castle he has to be in charge, there cannot be any hint of his power being questioned(remember the seen when kaylin told andella that they hadn’t been seen when they argued,and andella gave her the look of disbe­lief. this is in one of the earlier books. Person­naly I think there is some­thing wrong going on with night­shade. (in either cast in ruin or cast in chaos kaylin stated that night­shade may have let the shadow into his fief) There may be a power struggle go on in his fief.

    As far as sexual rela­tion­ships if youve read her other series (ie chil­dren of the blood series). You can tell she doesn’t consen­trate on the sex, even with the main char­ac­ters. This is fine, her series aren’t based on the sex seens, but the adven­tures and mystery’s Person­nally if i want a romance I will read a more romantic book.

    Now the Outlands, maybe I’m wrong, but the are the portal roads between the Hallion seem to be the Outlands. You can take the forest roads or the portal roads to get between each Hallione. Now here’s a ques­tion the people were sent to the outlands, now is it me , or is the outlands the humans sent to the heart of Hallione Bertollie.

    The six brothers/sleepers and the Halliones are senti­nals against the return of the ancients. (to prevent) Hallione Bertolli stated that the wars between the gods were in the outlands/portal roads. If I’m reading that wrong let me know OK?:))

  277. Eva R says:

    Re: Why Severn took in Kaylin

    It is weird that a savvy street kid like Severn would take in a clue­less 5 year old, when he had enough to do keeping himself alive. He could have chosen someone his own age or older, who could do more to help him- but instead he chose someone he had to care for, and stuck with her no matter how bad things got. It makes no sense… unless…

    Maybe Kaylin isn’t the first person Severn has tried to protect. What if he’d lost someone, not long before he found Kaylin, and taking her in was his way of trying to make up for it. If Kaylin reminded him of whoever he lost, that would explain why he chose her.

    The guilt and horror Severn would feel if someone who relied on him died because he was care­less or he trusted the wrong person would explain a lot about the obses­sive way he cares for Kaylin. It would explain why he will and has killed anyone who is a threat to her life, even the chil­dren. (Although Kaylin was also a child at the time, so he knew that at least one child would have died no matter what) Lingering feel­ings that protecting her was a penance and not just an act of love would explain the way he seems to defer to her on many (not all) issues. If Severn did lose someone, it would be well within his char­acter not to discuss it unless the subject came up on its own. 

    It would also be some­thing he’d have to get over, more or less, before any rela­tion­ship with Kaylin could work out well. She gets in enough scrapes that protec­tion is useful, but any feel­ings he has about owing her for some­thing he didn’t do would keep their rela­tion­ship from reaching a healthy balance. They’ve got enough prob­lems dealing with what he did do. If I’m right, by now Severn isn’t as tightly bound by his past fail­ures as he used to be, but he’s not free of them yet.

  278. Bridgett says:

    what forum? I’d like to check it out.

  279. Jen says:

    I think Brid­get­te’s right that the familiar needs a name so it won’t go haywire. One of Bertolle’s brothers tells her after Evarrim summons the fire elemental that if she doesn’t name the familiar, it will be like one of the elemen­tals unleashed. When the water was released it nearly drowned Elantra; the fire elemental would burn every­thing in its path until it consumed all. It’s not that the water or fire elemen­tals are “bad”. They simply cannot control them­selves. They are at least partly chaotic. 

    The drag­on’s breath bears out this hypoth­esis. Kaylin says it looks like a minia­ture shadow storm. The shadow storms are gener­ated by the chaos at the heart of Ravellon. So Kaylin’s familiar is a crea­ture of chaos that must be named (ordered) to be safe. 

    That seems to be what the names DO for immor­tals – they order them. Without their names, or if their names become corrupted by Shadow, they lose their shapes. In the case of the Barrani, they become Ferals like those they met in the forest. 

    That’s why giving up your true name (like Tara’s old Barrani master tried to do), is a trap. The name anchors immor­tals and makes them exist. Without it, they are lost to chaos. 

    Order and chaos exist inde­pen­dently of good and evil. You could be lawful and bad (Evarrim) or chaotic and yet sympa­thetic (Wilson and his brothers). The name doesn’t prevent you from becoming bad, or good. The name protects immor­tals from returning to chaos. 

    Although chaos is neither good nor evil, life cannot exist if chaos runs free. Life IS order – cells that work together, time’s arrow pointing in one direc­tion, gravity holding us to the planet, etc. If all natural laws were suspended, life as we know it would cease. Crea­tures like the elemen­tals and Wilson would run free. But it would not be a universe conducive to the survival of human beings, or even most immor­tals. So the elements are bound in the garden, the immor­tals get names, the mortals get stories made from true words, and enough order is main­tained that life can endure. 

    I assume that the Shadow is chaos person­i­fied. Kaylin and her friends oppose it because they want to preserve life. Unscrupu­lous mortals and immor­tals (Iber­ri­enne, Donalan Idis, Makkuron, Tara’s old Barrani master) are tempted to try to use chaos for power. While chaos may not be inher­ently evil, those who try to use it usually are. They are willing to take huge risks – usually not with their own lives – for power. 

    I’ve made a lot of assump­tions, but this is what I’ve gleaned about how magic and names work in Sagara’s universe. It’s a very inter­esting moral order, in that it has more than one axis. There isn’t just good and evil, there’s also chaos and order (or law). I’m still trying to wrap my head around all of it.

  280. Jen says:

    There’s some­thing I’m curious about. Do you think Kaylin is done facing and under­standing what happened with Barren? 

    I’m rereading and recon­structing from memory what I can’t find on the page, trying to relate what happened in as close to chrono­log­ical order as I can. Kaylin has given us quite a lot, but in several different books, and not in order. So you have to piece it together. 

    I think this is what occurred:
    –Kaylin delib­er­ately botched the assas­si­na­tion of Paul Moroes. After­ward, she was summoned to the White Towers of Barren to answer for her failure.

    –Part of her penance was having sex with Barren. It is unclear if she was merely threat­ened into the rela­tion­ship, or phys­i­cally forced. Regard­less, since Kaylin was 13 and didn’t want to sleep with Barren, it was not consen­sual sex.

    –The rela­tion­ship was rape in the classic sense – it was as much about power as desire. Barren wanted power over her; he wanted her know how power­less she was. He didn’t kiss her or try to make it plea­sur­able for her, either.

    –It is unclear how long it lasted. More than once, not longer than six months. She stayed in Barren even after the rape, though, which is part of why she feels self-loathing and shame. 

    Let me know what I missed – I’m sure I over­looked some details. 

    Kaylin hasn’t completely recov­ered from this. She’s still afraid to try anything sexual with Severn or Night­shade. She has night­mares. I don’t know what will happen next, but I feel like she’s not quite “done” facing this part of her past yet. Although she has obliquely told both Night­shade and Severn what happened, she hasn’t relived any memo­ries. She hasn’t told anyone else. She hasn’t had any cathartic expe­ri­ences, or over­come her shame. It doesn’t feel over yet, the way Steffi and Jade’s murders by Severn, or her time as an assassin for Barren, feel over.

  281. Mark Galpin says:

    So, I’m re-reading the Cast series for Cast In Peril (I got behind at work and haven’t had time to read, so sorry for not having it finished reading on release night!) but I ran across an odd mention in book one that there are SIX races in Elantra (before the new ones come later) one of which Kaylin had never encoun­tered “given their racial agora­phobia”. I don’t recol­lect that we ever meet these guys. Gnomes? Dwarves? What? Are they ever mentioned again? I keep thinking about it, and I could swear we only hear about Tha’Alani, Dragons, Barrani and Leon­tines (in addi­tion to humans)

  282. Kate says:

    Angelae (sp?)

  283. Jen says:

    The Aerians, like Clint and the Hawk Lord, are the sixth race. 

    The race with agora­phobia is the Tha’alani, though. They don’t like to go outside of their enclave in the city because they get bombarded by others’ thoughts. Also, other people don’t exactly like their minds read, so there’s a lot of hostility toward them. 

    A seventh race came to Elantra through a sort of inter-space portal in Chaos. They are mortal and humanoid, but freak­ishly tall and resemble Barrani. They live in Tiamaris’s fief. They are called the Norannir (I hope I’m spelling this right).

  284. Bridgett says:


    The only thing you miss is that in CiP Kaylin tells Severn that Baren was not the only one. So I’d say that as punish­ment for the botched murder she was raped by Baren and then any of his guard that wanted her. When she is talking to Severn she made it sound like Baren raped her more then once. It sounds like to me that when she was called to answer for not killing Paul, Baren raped her and then let as many guys as wanted to have at her, kind of a gang or train rape. So yeah she’s going to be really messed up.
    I think she is afraid of any one that she sees desire for her phys­i­cally on their face or in their eyes. It is a by product of seeing it on all those different faces when they hurt her.

  285. shauntel says:

    re: different races

    I asked this ques­tion before:
    1. Humans
    2. Barani
    3. Dragons
    4. Thalaani
    5. Norrinar (new)

    So what are the last two, I think one of the names was hinted in a prior book, I just can’t remember the name, but the sixth race was never named. So my ques­tioning mind has not stopped wondering.

  286. shauntel says:

    Sorry I didn’t add the Ariens. so here is the list again minus the missing sixth
    1. Humans
    2. Barani
    3. Dragons
    4. Ariens
    5. Thaalani
    7. Norrinar (new race)

  287. Paul Howard says:

    You’re missing the Leon­tine (the Lion Men).

    Remember Sergeant Marcus Kassan (Iron Jaw)?

  288. a.e says:

    Re: Barren wasn’t the only one who abused Kaylin.

    That convo with Severn was a bit confusing, and there is debate that when she said ‘Barren isn’t the only one [between us]’ that she was actu­ally refer­ring to Steffi and Jade. Supporting evidence is found i the convo she has with Teela when she spends the night with her (don’t have my book on me or i’d give a page number). But i agree with you on the rest of your comment.

  289. Amelie S says:

    There is also another one, the one with the racial agora­phobia wasn’t the thaalani but another one that we haven’t seen yet. (The passage is when Kaylin met Sanabilis, Diamart and Emmerian for the first time after they saved Catti in Cast in Shadow). So we have no infor­ma­tion about them.

    The ques­tion was asked on Michelles’ Tumblr :

    Q : are there any other races that we haven’t been intro­duced to yet? Living races?

    A : The short answer is yes. The longer answer is: there is one mortal race that doesn’t live within the bounds of Elantra, and at this point, I don’t have a story for them — but they were one of the orig­inal races I conceived before I started writing Cast in Shadow.
    The longer answer is also yes, but that one’s a spoiler :D

  290. Bridgett says:


    That could be. That wasn’t how I under­stood it. I have reread it a few times and it seems to me that since Severn knows Kaylin so well he would know she would not bring the names up at all. After all She thinks about telling Teela but wont due to his having asked her not to talk about them. In the case of the seen where they are sharing a room in CiP he asks her not to name them for the night. To me it seems as if that would not have anything to do with those two. He knows she does not talk about them and tries never to mention them espe­cially around him. But I could be wrong.

  291. Sarah says:

    Jen — That’s a very coherent expla­na­tion of how the Cast universe works. Nicely done! I also concur with Brid­gett’s hypoth­esis. It’ll be inter­esting to see how that story­line develops. 

    That is defi­nitely one of the things I like the best about this series — not only is it full of inter­esting char­ac­ters and plenty of adven­tures, but it is set up so that one can actu­ally contem­plate the nature of the universe and how good/evil and chaos/order interact and impact Kaylin’s world. Whether the answers a reader comes up with are the same answers that Michelle has really doesn’t matter; the fact that she encour­ages us to exer­cise our brains is what counts! Best of all, even if one doesn’t choose to dig deeper, the story is still awesome and enter­taining. Love it!

  292. shauntel says:

    oops! yep I forgot the leon­tines this means eight races. 

    Amelia is right! She is quoting what I remem­bered reading too.
    So as follows:

    1. Humans
    2. Leontines
    3. arien’s
    4. Barani
    5. Dragon
    6. Thaalani
    7. Norrinar (new race)
    8 ???(very secra­tive race)

  293. Jen says:

    I wonder if we’ll get the story for #8 at some point. It seems like we have so much plot already on our plates (shadow wolves, Aerians) that there may not be room for the eighth race. Unless Michelle’s contract gets extended again (crossing my fingers).

  294. Hilda says:

    Bridget, I like the idea that the famil­iar’s name is the word he took from Kaylin; she knew enough to give it to him, but it’s not thinking about it for his name. Maybe when she sees the Arkon again, she will remember. He asked for a record of her marks to compare., or rather to see what was missing. The problem is waiting that long. The little dragon needs it now. I love the way he is with her; not only protec­tive, but lovable. At least, NS didn’t kill him. I wonder if they will become friendly.

  295. Hilda says:

    Sorry about this late response. I would like to add here that I was always left with the impres­sion that it wasn’t only Barren who raped Kaylin; I think some of the other guards raped her too. Why I can’t under­stand( and I raised it after one of the earlier books), it’s why didn’t K kill them by just touching them. She knew she had that power. Soon after she started going with the Hawks, she killed the people that had a pros­ti­tu­tion ring of chil­dren; they burned inside out or some­thing like that. No one ever mentions that. She knew she had that power but never used it in Barren.

  296. Hilda says:

    I went back to these earlier messages and found yours which had left me thinking. You may be right in the example of a rein­car­nated goddess of sorts; she is like one in a billion and ages in between. Remember the statue of the Barrani in the Arkon library that had the same marks; he almost destroyed the dragons (I think) and the world. But even if immortal, he is gone. So the rein­car­nated goddess concept is not that far out. So, she has a mission to acom­plish given by the Ancients and then she will dissappear.
    I still think that the Ancients in Castle NS will have some­thing to do with her. After this WM trip, Kaylyn needs to go back to the heart of Castle NS; even though he threat­ened to kill her “reluc­tantly”, he did invite her in Chaos to go back to it. Maybe we will find what the purpose for her life is.

  297. Hilda says:

    I go again to my previous ques­tion. Why K didn’t kill all those men and Barren who raped her. She could incin­erate them from the inside out as she did later when she is angry. She has an incred­ible power in her hands; she also heal with the heat they have. That’s why she is wearing the bracelet. Could this be why she doesn’t forget?

  298. Edward says:


  299. Jen says:

    Hilda, my under­standing is that Kaylin had almost no control over her powers even when she first joined the Hawks (several years after Barren). The man she killed was the first time she ever used her powers. He had abused chil­dren. She killed him without even real­izing what she was doing because she was so angry. Even in Shadow she had very little control. She acted on instinct and emotion. 

    That’s why she wears the bracer – to prevent her doing some­thing cata­strophic before she learns to control her power. That’s why learning to light the damn candle is such a mile­stone. Kaylin IS getting better at control­ling her magic. There were several instances in this book where she used it consciously and with control.

    But at 13, when Barren hurt her, I don’t think her power was devel­oped enough to fight back. I don’t think she even knew she HAD magic.

  300. Jen says:

    Oh, I just checked out Michelle’s Tumblr (which I am now following). She mentions that she has defi­nite plans for a book on the Aerians. YES! I love Clint and the Hawk Lord, and I’d love to learn more about them. 

    She’s also trying for a book on the Shadow Wolves, but the plot hasn’t come together yet. She said that because Kaylin isn’t a Wolf, and the story is limited to her POV, it keeps morphing into some­thing else. But she’s hopeful.

  301. Edward says:

    Okay off topic, does anyone know if the the correct name of the Empire is called the Empire of Karrazon (Cast in Shadow pg. 9) or the Empire of Ala’on (Cast in Chaos pg. 219)?

  302. Mark says:

    [quote] But at 13, when Barren hurt her, I don’t think her power was devel­oped enough to fight back. I don’t think she even knew she HAD magic.[/quote]

    I disagree. I think you’re ignoring two key points of Kaylin’s person­ality (and thus her power) first, at that age Kaylin was very depressed and didn’t believe in herself. Basi­cally she didn’t fight back against barren because he was only hurting HER and part of her believed she deserved it for failing steffi and jade and the other fieflings in Barren. Second, of course, we have NEVER seen Kaylin use her power in defense or offense of her own life (although in CiP she indi­cates she may be able to heal herself, which is odd). Had Barren tried to rape [another] child in front of her, I think Barren would’ve been a crispy critter. But he simply attacked her, and that’s never been enough to make Kaylin angry enough to kill with magic (or, really, kill at all.)

  303. shauntel says:

    I agree with the state­ment, about kayleen using her powers for others and not herself. She really didn’t know anything about her power except when she healed by acci­dent. Her rage in Cast in Moon­light is the first she used to destroy.

    Although has anyone noticed that she is starting to be able to use her power even with the bracer (a little power).

  304. Jen says:

    Mark, I think you misun­der­stood my reply. I didn’t mean that Kaylin did not possess the power to kill Barren and his men. If she grew angry enough, sure, she might have uncon­trol­lably zapped him the way she did the child molester in Moon­light. But she wasn’t aware of having that power, nor did she have the control to use it consciously, in Barren. She is only devel­oping that conscious control of her power NOW, and it’s hit or miss even today. Seven years ago, it would have been impossible.

    It’s not a ques­tion of raw power. Kaylin has plenty of that. It’s a ques­tion of using that power to do what she wants, control­ling it, instead of bad things happening when she loses her temper.

    I think you are right about Kaylin’s mental state in Barren, though. She was caught in a web of self-loathing, anger, and shame. She didn’t believe she deserved any better than what Barren did. That doesn’t mean she wasn’t angry, but it wasn’t the kind of pure rage that could fuel an uncon­trol­lable burst of power. She felt too complicit in what happened to manage that pure anger at Barren. 

    Yes, Kaylin doesn’t kill people for attacking her. I don’t regard that as completely posi­tive, though. It’s a sign of her own self-loathing that she doesn’t view herself as worth enough to protect. I like her unselfish­ness in protecting the weak at great risk to herself; I worry about her self-hatred. All of us deserve not to be raped, wounded, or killed. Kaylin has a right to fight back. Her unre­solved anger at Barren, and herself for working for him and permit­ting his abuse, is part of why she can’t have a rela­tion­ship. She went rabid when she tried, and broke her part­ner’s jaw. That speaks of a lot of repressed rage.

  305. Bridgett says:

    Michelle’s Tumblr? Where is that? I’d love to fallow it.

  306. Bridgett says:

    I highly doubt it. He seems to instinc­tively know who is truly K’s friend and who is actu­ally there with less then steller plans for her.

  307. Meagan says:

    Not neces­sarily Brid­gett… The familiar has also shown dislike to Teela and a couple other char­ac­ters who are people Kaylin considers friends. I think it’s more of a jeal­ousy thing than anything else right now.

  308. Meagan says:

    Edward I noticed that differ­ence as well. All of my Cast books are now out on loan, or I would go back and look through them again to see if I am missing some­thing. Glad to see someone else picked up on that.

  309. Bridgett says:

    The only time I remember him showing anything like that for Teela was when she was scolding Kaylin. And the same with the Hawk­lord and Marcus. So maybe his “dislike” or what ever it would be called is actu­ally off of Kaylins reac­tion and not instinct.

  310. Jen says:

    What is the thing with magic and Kaylin’s blood? When she visited Castle Night­shade the first time, the Barrani guardians who had lost their names were VERY inter­ested in her blood. Night­shade warned her not to bleed in the lake of life in Court­light. Now her familiar prevents her from giving the Hallionnes her blood like everyone else in Peril. So what’s the big deal about Kaylin’s blood (or anyone’s blood)? Does it give power over the person?

  311. Jen says:

    Her tumblr is msagara. She doesn’t post that often, so your dash­board won’t be flooded if you decide to follow her. You can always just visit it if you prefer not to join tumblr. There are fun tidbits of info – and frankly I need any clues I can get into what she’s thinking!

  312. Meagan says:

    If it was power over the person I cannot really see the Barrani giving their blood will­ingly — espe­cially since Teela told Kaylin they don’t stay in inns because of the fact they have to sign their common names, and if enough people know they it can be a danger. 

    Maybe it’s because Kaylin’s the Chosen?

  313. Jen says:

    I assumed the Barrani didn’t like giving their blood, but put up with it because it was the Hallionnes – they could be trusted, and if you wanted to stay there was no other choice. Plus, everyone is equally disad­van­taged who stays. 

    What struck me was how vehe­ment the familiar was that she shouldn’t give the Hallionnes HER blood. The familiar also almost attacked Bertolle when he was in water dragon form. This may relate to your and Brid­get­te’s discus­sion further up the page – how reli­able are the famil­iar’s inti­ma­tions of danger? Like Brid­gette, I initially thought the familiar had some special inside knowl­edge – it knew who was trust­worthy. But its hostility to the Hallionnes has made me rethink that assump­tion. Some things it defi­nitely knows more about than Kaylin, but some­times it seems to be as fallible as she is. Maybe Sorrow will clarify this a bit. 

    About the power of blood – maybe it’s used to track people within the Hallionne? Is the blood a personal offering – like giving a name? Those name­less Barrani in Night­shade were almost vampiric in their reac­tion to Kaylin’s blood. Could they sense all the ancient name magic in her blood, and they wanted it? From her tutors, Kaylin knows that death magic exists. It was what was used in Shadow to try to warp the marks. It makes sense that blood magic would also be a thing. 

    It’s really too bad Kaylin didn’t pay more atten­tion in school. I get the feeling “everyone” but Kaylin knows about not giving your blood away to powerful, magical beings (Night­shade was frus­trated when he real­ized she’d been foolish enough to let her blood fall on the table full of names).

  314. Hilda says:

    Just to comment on the matter of Severn having met the Emperor. Although Michelle hasn’t said it like that (that I remember), it seems clear to ME in many books that he is conver­sant with the etiquette of the court. He knows what they do; he teaches K. One time he held her hands away from her iears because he said she needed to get used to the volume because in front of the Emperor she could not cover her ears. I believe he has even reported to the emperor.

  315. Hilda says:

    We have guessed a lot about the secret names, so maybe Michelle will clarify before the end of the following book. In thinking about it, it became clear to me that if the Lady and the Lord the WM, and other Barrannis, called Calar­nenne publicly by that name it is because that was his real name, his public name, known by all before he became Outcast. The same will be for the other Barranis. So, to use the name to exer­cise control over the Barrani, must be some otherway of using it; perhaps using some mind power.
    NO! It won’t work. Now I remember when K went to the past, she stopped his carriage; if I’m not mistaken she said NS and he knew she has called him with a name he didn’t yet have. Later, she called him mentally by Calar­nenne, and he almost killed her. And I thought I have figured it out.

  316. Jen says:

    Hilda, she didn’t actu­ally call him Calar­nenne in Silence. She spoke to him mind-to-mind. That sort of commu­ni­ca­tion is only possible because she holds his name. That’s why Severn can speak mind-to-mind to Kaylin, because she gave him HER true name. When she mind-spoke him Night­shade suddenly perceived that she held his name. He felt threat­ened and attacked, but Tiamaris protected her.

    The point is that she didn’t call him Calar­nenne to reveal she held his true name. Calar­nenne may just be a collec­tion of sounds unless it’s spoken by someone with a deeper knowl­edge of him and his name. 

    I’m just guessing, though, based upon what we’ve seen so far in Peril. Like you and the other posters, I really don’t completely under­stand what this change means.

  317. Bridgett says:

    I was reading some of the above posts about the possi­bil­i­ties of books Michelle has talked about and how she is writing them. Like the book about the Wolves, or the Arien’s. I was just wondering if any of you feel the same as I do.…. I find I do not want to hear about the Wolves and Arien’s from Kaylins perspec­tive. I would like the book about the Wolves to be from Severn’s perspec­tive like The Sacred Hunt books. I would like the book about the Arien’s to be from Clints perspec­tive or the Hawk­lords. I want to see Kaylin from their eyes, see their people from their eyes and see the world and empire from their perspective.
    I love Kaylin, and I love the books but I think that the change in perspec­tive would be really cool. I loved the short stories and books Michelle has written for The Sun Sword legacy. The other perspec­tives are great. Also, Kaylin has never been a Wolf or an Arien, in the story she has far less inter­ac­tion with them then the Lion­ties and the dragons, even the mind readers she has been part of their memo­ries. I think a book about the Barrani from Tain or Teela’s point of view would be cool too. I think the whole world from Kaylin’s point of view would be a bit.…… I don’t know.…. much. Her story is her story and I love it. But the Wolves isn’t her story it’s Severn’s.… tell it from his eyes. To see Kaylin from others view point would be way cool I think. 

    Not that I have any say in the matter but I just thought I’d get that out there.

  318. Krylia says:

    I think if Severn was pushing Kaylin so that she could heal, he would have done so with Steffi & Jade, or with her time as an assassin. Instead, Severn actively tells K he doesn’t want to know about her time in Barren. This isn’t, in my eyes, for her sake. He’s inse­cure — up against a beau­tiful, powerful, immortal — and he’s pushing. He could wait for another tower-variety test, since she’s gone through two over the past few months, there’s no reason to assume she won’t face any others. He’s not waiting, he’s anxious for her to heal NOW, possibly while he feels he still holds an advan­tage over NS

    And I don’t think NS is entirely comfort­able with Severn around — he asks Andellen about Severn in CiCourt­light, when K tells him he could come by her apart­ment (I can’t remember which book that was in), he comments some­thing like ‘not, I think, while the wolf prowls’, he even spec­i­fies that no other Hawks are to go to WM, clearly to get her away from Severn.

    I thought it was very inter­esting in CiChaos p.497 – 498 where she distin­guishes between the world the dragons occupy (one of legend) and the one she & Severn belong to (the ordi­nary). It will be inter­esting to see if she is able to bridge those two worlds, or if she will be forced to choose. The romantic aspects pick this up — Severn, strong though he is, is a fief orphan & Emper­or’s assassin, while Night­shade, Outcaste though he is, is almost mythic (CiCourt­light, p.58). K clearly believes that she belongs in the mundane world, but the most powerful people around — High Lord & Lady, Arkon, etc, do not seem so sure about that.

    Has anyone besides me noticed that K’s vision appears to be changing? In the short story CiMoon­light, K can only see the mage signa­ture when someone is casting for it. — even in CiFury (p.242 – 243) this is true. Then in Peril she can see them without anyone drawing them out — in her apart­ment, on the door, in the forest, etc. Also, Bellusedo cannot see the sphere protecting them (p.30) & Tiamaris does not see the marks as purple (p.71). There was also talk in CiCourt­light about the High Court looking different imme­di­ately after she takes her name (p.333). I’m also wondering if everyone saw the late High Lord pass the mantle, or if only people who could carry the mantle (yes, I know K does not include herself in that list, but she clearly under­es­ti­mates herself) could see it… Even the ring the Lord of the WM gave to her has changed in her eyes — Severn does not indi­cate whether he can see the change or not (CiSi­lence, p.193). There are several times in Peril when K is reading the Barrani’s emotions, but cannot actively iden­tify why she feels that they are nervous, etc. In CiChaos, K can see that she only has gorwn into part of her name (p.418), so by Barrani stan­dards she is a child still growing into her name (and there­fore a big risk for the recita­tion), but a human could spend their whole life growing into their name. (I don’t know if that last part makes sense to others — it’s just, humans never stop changing, whereas Immor­tals more or less do — so if she spends the full of her mortal life trying to grow into her name…) If K is under­going some sort of trans­for­ma­tion, I expect she will be crazy powerful at the end, but what else? How will she end up seeing the world? 

    I agree with whoever was talking about her becoming a mortal/Immortal emis­sary, but would take it a little further than that. The elements are seeing things from her perspec­tive (and scale), she holds the names of multiple Barrani, but they are currently using that to watch her (and are there­fore aware of her perspec­tive on things). She has friends or family amongst all of the races, except the Nomanir (so far) and she values the exis­tence of all of the races. I think she is meant to bring all of the races into a more cohe­sive (& under­standing) whole.

  319. Hilda says:

    What about a short story on the Hawk­lord? What made he work for the Emperor? In one early book we learned he is a great mage. Is he the only one in his race? Do they have their own internal govern­ment and ranking? He is also a fighter. Why?
    What are the female aerians; appar­ently there are no Haws.

  320. Hilda says:

    There are always lots of simi­lar­i­ties between Kaylin in the Cast series and Jewel in the Sun Sword series. Both have a concern with their blood. With Jewel is clear she can’t give her blood or let it fall on the ground (Avandar would have a fit) because the Demons can find her with it. With Kayliin, there are no demons and no need to find her with it; Kaylin does not have Jewel’s problem. I guess even­tu­ally the little dragon will show why using her blood care­lessly is dangerous​.So, we have to wait and see why Michelle does not want K“s blood spilled. As things are now, I can’t imagine any being tracing it to harm her.

  321. Hilda says:

    To get the Wolves story from Kaylin’s POV, maybe Michelle. can have Severn or another Wolf telling K their story. Kidnap K and have S and Lord NS working together to save her, and telling her how they did it.

  322. Laura says:

    At least once, the Arkon’s eyes were silver, and Kaylin didn’t know what that meant.

  323. Hilda says:

    OK. You all summa­rized some of these roads, but not all could be the Outlands. It’s possible (we haven’t seen yet) that the West March is an ancient city, not yet a ruin. (I wonder how Michelle is going to describe it). Hope­fully, it will have a city with male and females, and maybe other visi­tors. Then, we also have Ravellon; in the middle of the fiefs, appar­ently there are no roads going to it because one passes from any and all the fiefs to it. I think, there was a city there, because it had great knowl­edge and great libraries (if I remember well). Then, we have the gray ways where K got lost when she left the Keeper, where the Devourer used to roam, that were the ways used by those who knew to travel between worlds (not cities, but maybe worlds is the same).
    There are also the estates that belong to the Barrani fami­lies; they must be some­where. Also, when the previous Lord of the Barrani called the Bs to come, they came from long distances (across the seas, beyond the moun­tains), in quan­ti­ties to affect the Emperor.
    In the first or second book, when K came back to the office from a visit to NS (I think), Marcus was terri­fied that she had gone to “the Ruins”. We haven’t heard yet anything more about those “Ruins”. Since then, I have always wanted to know what those Ruins are.
    So the waste­lands must be partic­ular places where certain groups created by the Ancients Lords exist in condi­tions like we are seeing in C in P.

  324. shauntel says:

    I don’t know about it being from anoth­er’s perspec­tive (besides kaylin) the entire book.… doesn’t go with the series. I wouldn’t mind an occa­sional para­graph or chapter from anoth­er’s perspec­tive, but that’s all.

    Sorry I really, really like kaylins perspec­tive. (please don’t change) The Sunsword series has too many subplots. ( I had to re read each sun sword book over and over to get the whole thing or connec­tions i missed.) 

    That’s why i love the Hidden city books, it’s primarily from jewels perspec­tive with the people around her thrown in.

  325. Hilda says:

    I’m assuming that she would have fought back if she were going to be raped. In fighting back her power would have come out. What you are presenting, however, makes sense. She prob­ably thought it was ok to be punished for her action in betraying Barren. Hard for me to accept that because she is a fighter, and I assume she would fight. She was a kid though despite her latent power, with a lot of baggage, but a kid. Also raised in the culture that the powerful can do anything, mostly bad for the others. I hope she can get out of it if she woud like a happy future, and I think she does.

  326. Hilda says:

    A short story on any other group could be from someone else’s point of view; from what someone else’s knows or observes. If K comes out at all it, she could be a secondary char­acter. The story could be told based on someone else’s, maybe not even having K as a character,

  327. Jen says:

    On her old website, Michelle has some posts that are perti­nent to this discus­sion. Basi­cally, her Sun Sword and Hidden City books kept getting longer and longer. Some readers also complained about too much complexity, requiring the reader to do too much reading between the lines. She decided to limit the Elantra series to one POV in an attempt to shorten the books and create a more approach­able universe. So while getting multiple perspec­tives would be fun, I’m not sure we’ll ever get more than the epilogues in any other char­ac­ters’ POV. The whole series was conceived as an exer­cise in writing from one char­ac­ter’s point-of-view. It’s become a hall­mark of the series.

    I can’t see Michelle writing a whole Elantra novel from any perspec­tive other than Kaylin’s. She admitted she hadn’t even thought of it. Perhaps, someday, a short story? 

    With these limi­ta­tions, and the very real problem that Kaylin has little to do with Shadow Wolves except Severn, you can see why she’s having a few prob­lems plot­ting the Shadow Wolf book. I would like to read it, just to fill in the gaps on Severn’s char­acter. He’s so quiet and so like Kaylin (on the surface) that I forget how little we know about his back­ground before he and Kaylin reunited. The Shadow Wolves are obvi­ously a huge part of that story.

  328. Jen says:

    Krylia, that’s a very inter­esting thing you noticed – the contrast between the ordi­nary world and the legendary one. Kaylin is kind of suspended between the two worlds. Although she is human and mortal, the marks and her gifts link her to the super­nat­ural world. It’s one of the more satis­fying things about the series’ struc­ture that her two romantic inter­ests are divided just like her nature. So as she tries to choose between Severn and Night­shade, she’s also choosing between the mortal and immortal (or ordi­nary and magical) parts of her self. 

    This is what leads me to think that she needs both men right now, and it suggests why Kaylin hasn’t chosen between them. She is both ordi­nary and touched by great magic. Each suitor repre­sents a part of herself. She can’t give up one without relin­quishing that part of herself, and as you also pointed out, she appears to be an emis­sary between the two worlds, and the various races that inhabit them. She can’t be an emis­sary if she’s wholly a part of either universe, cut off from part of her nature. 

    I love how the romance isn’t just a romance, but paral­lels the larger choices Kaylin is making about her life and her purpose. It elevates the whole Severn vs. Night­shade debate above who’s hotter or who’s nicer, and into ques­tions about Kaylin’s ulti­mate role in the universe. Will she choose ordi­nary or legendary life? The Shire or sailing off to the west and the undying lands? (to draw on Tolkien, one of Michelle’s inspirations).

  329. Rene says:

    My take on other Barranni using Calar­nenne was that it had some­thing to do with his being Outcaste-as though his right to use the name was given up, he is barely admitted as being Barranni. So, the Lady calling him his Barranni name was defying his outcaste-ed-ness and recog­nizing him as a Barranni Lord. Remember, she doesn’t know why he is Outcaste. I also get the impression…for no easily explained reason…that he chose Night­shade himself, maybe in defiance.
    I like the idea that the name we read isn’t really the True Name-it seems to fit.

  330. Hilda says:

    Friends, THE COVER OFBATTLEIS SIMPLY MAGNIFICENT. LORD CELLERIANT READY TO BATTLE. I went to Amazon and found it in my account; it’s there ready to be received December 31. Did I miss any announce­ment by Michelle. I have looked all over her website, but haven’t found anything about BATTLE. I tried her new website, searched all over, but can’t find anything. She usually sends an e‑mail announcing it, but I don’t have it. I don’t know well how to navi­gate her website, but I keep trying. Where should I go? Can someone tell me?This means that we may receive her first chapter in 3 or 3 weeks. “I HOPE”!!!! THANKS.

  331. Hilda says:

    Brid­gett, in Michelle’s website go to Michelle’s comments of June 20, for Commments/spoilers, City of Night, she goes very exten­sively on how and why she writes from different point of views, and why she does it as a writer. It’s very inter­esting to see why and how she decides.

  332. shauntel says:

    I saw it to0, I don’t think she posted either.

    It looks like cellerant, but it could be Mellorine to0.

  333. Shaima says:

    Ok so I just finished reading Cast in Peril (was unfor­tu­nately lying here for a while before I had a chance to read it)…ahhhh Night­shade why must you be so scary at times?? >,< lol Although I have to admit that it doesn’t diminish my love for him at all XD I absolutely loved this book! I do say that for all the Cast books ^^0 but this one made me laugh from begin­ning to end. My favourite moment? Kaylin’s familiar biting Night­shade’s hand lol and…am I the only one who nearly fainted waiting for Lord of the West March to appear???! Why Michelle? Why must u torture us so? lol ^-^ I’m looking forward to the naming of Kaylin’s ‘little dragon’ should it happen, and obvi­ously now the antic­i­pa­tion for Cast in Sorrow is gonna kill me for another year T‑T

  334. Will says:

    I know what the readers want and feel typi­cally have no effect on the author (you write where the story takes you) but how many of you want Kaylin to end up with Nightshade?

    With Severn?

    I’m more of a Night­shade fan because his feel­ings for Kaylin are more in line with that of a would-be lover. His ‘courtship’ is unin­ten­tially hilar­ious because why his moves would undoubt­edly work well with a fellow Barrani, they don’t exactly trans­late well when courting a human. 

    Severn, his love for Kaylin is almost naked but it feels almost parental…and creepy. He prac­ti­cally raised her from the age of 5 to about 12ish. Sagara was careful to write that Kaylin ran away before she was 12, other­wise, we would have had to read about Severn teaching Kaylin about the repro­duc­tive process. 

    So I’m a Team!Nightshade.

  335. shauntel says:

    I’m team night­shade, although I don’t find severne creepy.

    I’m 60>40 Night­shade, depending on how she builds Severne (If his back­ground is as awsome as I think) If she is going to make it different from anything we’ve read (they never speak of his child­hood before Kaylin remember he was 10 yr’s old and alone when he found her) How did he survive and when did he become alone in nightshade????

    Severne is very posses­sive although he is more quite. He killed for kaylin so his love is strong, and always has been. I don’t even know if he felt like she was his blood family, I think his feel­ings were always deep.

    I love Night­shade because he’s immortal, magical, and powerful. (what else can you say) :))))))

  336. Jen says:

    Will, we share a lot of similar opin­ions on who Kaylin should choose. I’m pretty strongly in favor of Kaylin ending up with Night­shade. It’s not that I dislike Severn, but I find the sexu­al­iza­tion of their rela­tion­ship uncom­fort­able, too. He’s like family. Kaylin loves and trusts him, but she doesn’t want him. 

    Night­shade behaves like a poten­tial lover, and Kaylin responds to him that way. She is acutely aware of HIM – the way he looks, moves, sounds, and feels. This phys­ical aware­ness has become a sort of fasci­nated attrac­tion. Night­shade acts equally drawn to Kaylin, although he conceals it better in public. In private, though, he can’t stop himself from touching her (even with the familiar threat­ening to breathe clouds of dangerous magic on him). 

    His courtship would work better if there were fewer displays of strength and more open­ness and vulner­a­bility. But you were right when you pointed out that he is wooing her like a Barrani. Barrani despise weak­ness and admire strength. So his attempts to impress her often fall humor­ously flat, as she is either appalled, or frightened. 

    But they are still really enter­taining to read about. When they interact, sparks fly. I can never tell what Night­shade will do next, or how Kaylin will respond. This unpre­dictability is exciting. 

    I have no idea what Sagara’s plans are for the future. I used to think there was no chance of a Nightshade/Kaylin pairing because he was not human, and he had some ethical … prob­lems (she thought he was the devil incar­nate, she was terri­fied of him, and she disap­proved of his behavior). But even though Night­shade is still scary, inhuman, and amoral, he’s also a fasci­nating char­acter and his role in the story is only expanding. So I live in hope!

  337. Chris says:

    This reply is to Jen and a.e., unfor­tu­nately there was no reply button to their indi­vidual responses. 

    The idea of Night­shade “passion­ately losing control” was brought up above by Donna MacEwen, and that’s how I got onto this conver­sa­tional track. I did not bring it up as an example of his “mindset”. I don’t neces­sarily think it likely that he *will* lose control, but her wanting that as an outcome is some­thing that I did take issue with. And the rest of my reply was tailored specif­i­cally to Donna MacEwen’s initial statements. 

    That said, I do think that everyone does have a breaking point on losing their control. It may be very very hard to reach in some people, but I think that it is there. Once that happens, then I do think that people in such a mind-set can hurt and abuse the people around them. They may not, but how can the rest of us truly say until after someone has reached their breaking point?

  338. Chris says:

    Susan E.,

    I thank you for your sensible reply and can’t really disagree with anything that you’ve said. What I said was very much informed by what Donna MacEwen said, and as such, was designed to be emotional and an example of some of the dangers of “passion­ately losing control”. 

    I don’t actu­ally think of NS as “evil”, though I do think that his person­ality, desires, refer­ences, etc. are too far from Kaylin’s for them to ever make a healthy rela­tion­ship work. He’s espe­cially not someone who can help her get beyond her past, afaic. And I really would like her to find someone who can help her to do *that*, much moreso that I’m inter­ested in seeing her find someone to sleep with.

  339. Chris says:

    And I would say that your reply evidences a “shallow” analysis of my initial replies. If you re-read the, in the context of the conver­sa­tion, and try to think of the various moti­va­tions for why I wrote the way that I did, it may help you to more clearly see my reasoning, rather than the more “shallow” analysis that you used at the time that you wrote this.

  340. Chris says:

    Severn is like an appendage and if Kaylin does anything romantic with Night­shade, her rela­tionship with Severn is ruined forever, isn’t it? ”

    Not neces­sarily. Severn may feel that his love is “true” enough that he might get past it if Kaylin & NS slept together. It would defi­nitely take some effort on his part, and even then he may NOT get past it, but I think that the possi­bility exists.

  341. Chris says:

    That should have said “If you re-read the replies that I wrote, in the context…”.

  342. Chris says:

    Bobbie Kirk­land,

    I think that you wrote a very good post and made a lot of great points. I defi­nitely enjoyed reading it, thank you. 

    At one point you said “Our knowl­edge of Severen is, once again, limited by what Kaylin knows” and while that is true, I think it worth mentioning how often the different people in Kaylin’s like approve of Severn. It’s usually in very brief comments, but it does keep happening. Including by people such as Kayala and Marrin, who I think would be less inter­ested in how he makes her profes­sional life better and would be more concerned with how he affects her personally.

  343. Chris says:

    It’s possible that giving us Severn’s pov, or just more info about him, might give away something(s) that we just can’t yet know as readers. Some other possibilities:

    It may have to do with the way that Michelle needs one or more of the char­ac­ters story arcs to evolve?
    Making him the clear love interest might be frowned on by Michelle and/or the publisher, as they might think that it will cause too many readers from the opposing “team” to stop buying the books?
    I believe that Michelle has said that romance is not her forte, this may be evidence of that?

    And it’s not like there aren’t other areas where we’re very unin­formed, like the rest of the fiefs, the Arcanum, the Emperor, the Aerian and Human Castes (we can assume we know about humans, but their reality here could be a surprise).

  344. Chris says:

    Actu­ally, she DOES share a room again with him. On page 282 it says that she is led to either him or Teela, and that she is comfort­able with both.

  345. Shannon says:

    I have also noticed the strong bonds Kaylin seems to create with powerful male char­ac­ters. I’ve even enter­tained the Kaylin-Tiamaris or Kaylin-Andellan possi­bil­i­ties, but I think these are a stretch. I think a Kaylin-Hawk­lord rela­tion­ship is even more unlikely. I’ve always been on Team Severn although I find his surety unset­tling at times.

    As long as we’re talking about Kaylin’s rela­tion­ships with powerful char­ac­ters, she’s amassed quite of few powerful female friends as well: The Consort, Ybelline, Bellusdeo, Tara, and not to mention Teela. She is quickly becoming the most powerful person in the world and she’s still only a Private.

  346. Hilda says:

    We discussed K not using her powers when she was raped as a teen ager. In C in P she also failed to use a power she already has and should have used. In fact, in rereading I discov­ered she had it and could have used it in defense several timees, and wonder “why didn’t she?”. Of course, I’m refer­ring to Lord Sana­balis medal­lion. The way the story goes, I think even Michelle forgot about it. So many times, it would have been perfect times. Can you imagine Lord Evarrin jeal­ousy if K had pulled and used the medal­lion? She even walked hand-in-hand with the Elemental Fire; Evar­rine could have died. Well maybe next time. Let’s submit names for her tiny dragon.

  347. Edward says:

    Name: Wilson!!!!

  348. Edward says:

    As I did not know what a fimilar is. I may have found a way to find out.

    http://​www​.amazon​.com/​F​a​m​i​l​i​a​r​s​-​K​r​i​s​t​i​n​e​-​K​a​t​h​r​y​n​-​R​u​s​c​h​/​d​p​/​0756400813​/​r​e​f​=​s​r​_​1​_​31​?​s​=​b​o​o​k​s​&​i​e​=​U​T​F​8&​q​i​d​=​1352788097&​s​r=1 – 31

    The inter­esting thing is that Mrs. West is an author of the book.

    Famil­iars [Mass Market Paperback]
    Kris­tine Kathryn Rusch (Author), Jody Lyn Nye (Author), P.N. Elrod (Author), Von Jocks (Author), Andre Norton (Author), Laura Anne Gilman (Author), Josepha Sherman (Author), Michelle West (Author), Denise Little (Editor)

  349. Bridgett says:

    So very true… And the Funny thing is she doesn’t even know it. She would never take advan­tage of those friend­ships the way many other races and humans would.

  350. Bridgett says:

    So just to clarify. I want all the “Cast in .……” books from Kaylin’s point of view. You can’t have them any other way. That would suck. A little chapter at the end like in CiP from the Consorts point of view was really cool. But that is all I would want. 

    I just don’t see how a book on the Wolfs is really a “Cast in.…” book. It is an exten­sion of the Elantran world. Just as a book on the Arians would be. Like Jewels story and the Hunts Lords stories are to the Sunsword novels. I would like to see just those two books written from the perspec­tive of Sever and Clint or the Hawk­lord. I would like those two books to be only from one persons perspec­tive just as the “Cast in.…” books are always from Kaylin’s. I do not want the confu­sion or really long add on that comes from multiple view points. Kaylin doesn’t even have to be in the books but I would like it if she was and we go to see the persons real internal view of her, but kind of at a glance. Like she is not the only Hawk to the Hawk­lord, She is not family to Clint other then she is a Hawk and saved his wife and child. And possibly the wolves could be with Severn during the 7 years she did not know he was there so you see him catching her at odd times and seeing her grow but staying away. 

    I just thought those would make for some really neat perspec­tive and stories.

  351. Bridgett says:

    In CiP when Kaylin is given the medal­lion by Lord Sana­balis he tells her that to use it would pretty much be commit­ting suicide. That it is only there as a deterant and not for her use. With all the other things going on she prob­ably did not even think about it. But I did several times through the story. I know that if she had though it would have caused major prob­lems. Letting the court know she talks with the elements was a big bad thing to do. Talk about making herself look dangerous.

  352. Hilda says:

    I always thought “famil­iars” are small animal that are “witches” compan­ions. Didn’t know they could do magic, only the “witches“could.

  353. Joanna says:

    Yes! Hail fellow Nightlin shipper! We have a whole big discus­sion about what exactly is creepy about Severn/Kaylin ship­ping. (on our fansite, fansofmichellesagarawest.wordpress).

    We’re actu­ally starting an online book club tomorrow, 4pm EST — a handful of us are getting together in the chat room to discuss, in real time, the first half of “Cast in Moon­light”. We figure if we take the books in chunks each week, we will prob­ably have just finished reviewing the lot before “Cast in Sorrow” is released and it will make the wait less painful. :)

    But we also are working to review the other books and get discus­sions going on the other series and the short stories so we can read more of MSW in the mean­time as well.

  354. Edward says:

    Okay so here is a ques­tion I am tring to figure out and need help.

    The creator — is god, but was sundered apart by the elements
    The elements — then were controller by theor creations
    Lords of law and chaos — created the hallion and shadows
    The chosen — not created by any of the above.

    So here is the ques­tion, what is a fimilar as the fire said it is elemental, but not a known one. What is its purpose?

  355. Jen says:

    The purpose of Kaylin’s familiar seems to be to protect and serve Kaylin, judging by its behavior. This is in keeping with the tradi­tional role of a familiar. A familiar was a magical crea­ture who served a witch or mage. In the Tempest, for example, Ariel is a sprite (air elemental) who serves Pros­pero. In Howl’s Moving Castle, the wizard, Howl, is served by a fire elemental named Calcifer. I have read other stories where the familiar took the form of a black cat, or some other animal. In all cases, though, the familiar is a magical, not natural, crea­ture, and it is not free, but tied to the mage who summons or captures it.

  356. Hilda says:

    I think you also need to consider the “Ancients”, who I think have to do with the creations (or conver­sion from normal beings) of the Chosens. Some of them are still active, at least in some room in Castle Night­shade. Also, and this is more my recent conclu­sion, Michelle has given a lot of simi­lar­i­ties to her main char­ac­ters in both series, Cast and Sun Sword/House: Jewel and Kailin. Jewel now has 2 giant cats that defend her and are magical, Kaylin has her very small/cute but aggre­sive familiar (dragon?). In both series, readers can’t help but to love them; they are enchanting.

  357. Lizeth says:

    I think Severn is the most under­de­vel­oped and intriguing of all the char­ac­ters. Among the things that need to be clar­i­fied are:
     — His sudden appear­ance in the fiefs as a child of 10. How can he not only survive but actu­ally keep three other chil­dren alive in such a dangerous environment?
     — Why does everyone (partic­u­larly the orverly suspi­cious and compet­i­tive Barrani) just accept S pres­ence and abil­i­ties without comment or ques­tion? (i) He goes to the high court with a lame excuse, becomes a Lord of the court without a true name, and the Barrani just accept him as part of the Court; (ii) He carries and uses a magical weapon but seems to have no magic of his own. Yet, there seems to be at least one event in each book where he does at least one thing that should be impos­sible for a human/mortal yet he is totally unaf­fected and his actions pass unre­marked (i.e. he is able to stop K from destroying the outcast dragon and he is able to put the manacle on her without getting burnt to a crisp; he goes with K an T to the past through a shad­ow­storm; he goes to what appears to be a different level of the outlands with K through the little dragon and he finds his way back with Iberrum who innex­plic­ably accepts him as an equal, at least insofar as he leans on S to get back to the Consort); (iii) NS slaps Severn in Shadows and pretty much told him to keep his place but in a later book refuses to walk K home “while the wolf hunts” thereby admit­ting that while he can chal­lenge S within NS, he is not sure S will not just kill him outside of NS. Yet, in most situ­a­tions NS just ignores S, which seems out of char­acter for NS. (iv) An’Teela appears to be sexu­ally attracted to him, but just accepts his pres­ence despite the fact that she knows nothing about him and is unable to get any real reac­tion out of him. (v) S appar­ently plans to attend the regalia and as far as the Barrani can tell he does not have a true name. If the Barrani are concerned, it seems out of char­acter for them not to at least pick an argu­ment with K over it. If they are not concerned, why not?
     — How did he become a wolf? He is supposed to be an illit­erate 18 yo when he leaves NS, but somehow he gets to the elite force known as the Wolves and convinces them to train him. This is partly explained when K has a vision of him explaining to someone, presum­ably the Wolf Lord, that he needs to be able to protect someone, undoubt­edly K. S pretty much tells K that part of his job as a wolf was to keep the Wolf Lord informed on K’s progress and abil­i­ties. He makes it sound as if he created the reports Lord D showed her. The logical conclu­sion would be that S got in and got in by “telling” on K, but this seems way out of char­acter for S.
     — How is it that the T’aalani can read him, but the Hallione can’t (and Tara prob­ably can’t either – she refers to him as a “dark­child”)?

    It seems obvious that he is not merely human/mortal, but he cannot be a half-breed of any of the known races because some trace of power or a char­acter trait should have given him away by now. Also, making him anything other than mortal/human seems unrea­son­able since K has healed him and should have noticed any differ­ences. I can’t wait to see how she will resolve this char­acter and how she will explain the other character’s reac­tions (or lack of reac­tion) to him. Not all can be satis­fac­to­rily explained away by K’s inability to see things until she gets hit over the head with the facts.

  358. Bridgett says:

    That is the best way to have put S that I have seen. Yet. I love his char­ictor and am waiting for the next book. All the ques­tions are such good ques­tions. The one about the mind readers reading him but not the magic build­ings. Easy, at each time it said that he LET them into his mind volen­tar­ialy to get where he needed or wanted to go. Other then that I have no answers.

  359. Lizeth says:

    I think it likely that he is still a Shadow Wolf, and not just seconded to the wolves to hunt Ibarrum (sp?). He failed to make his kill in CiP and, given what he told K about the rate of success of the wolves, he prob­ably won’t want to go back to the City until he succeeds. I think his wolf-mentor is likely to make an appear­ance and maybe he will tell K (and us) some of the things S will not share.

  360. Lizeth says:

    Thank you, Bridget! I don’t know how I missed that. I went back and listened (audible is great:)) to the first book again and you are right. It seems very clear that he allowed Yballin (sp?) to read him, at least as much as neces­sary to qualify to be a Shallow Wolf. As both, Yballin and Severn are very discreet, it is unclear if she saw anything surprising about him or his past.

    One other thing I am looking forward to hearing about is Severn’s rela­tion­ships with the Dragons, partic­u­larly the Arkon. In the first book, S and Tiamaris seem to dislike each other initially but are friendly by the end, after T decides to be in favor of K staying alive. In a later book, Severn casu­ally mentions to T and K that he visited the Arkon to ask him somthing. In CiF, Severn opens the Library door, which won’t open for Cere­bellus, because K is injured, yet neither he nor the Arkon indi­cate by word or action that they know each other. The Arkon actu­ally makes it a point to ask S and K if they are familiar with the rules of the Library. In later books, their behavior toward each other is even more distant, until the Arkon decides in CiR that S should carry the magic crystal S and K need. Despite this show of trust, which the Arkon belit­tles by indi­cating that this is the lesser of two evils, neither one says or does anything in any of the books to indi­cate that they know each other. I wonder if the Arkon was one of Severn’s immortal mentors and if the weapon S carries came from the Arkon’s hoard.

  361. Scott says:

    Okay, so I delayed my getting the book due to a backlog of others, but finally got around to it…

    Enjoy­able read, as the rest of the series has been, but this one felt some­what unfin­ished. So much buildup about the regalia, and the ending stops short. On top of that, there are several refer­ences to naming the familiar and resolving issues from Teela’s past, neither of which have been finished. There are further hints about Night­shade’s past and Severn’s, but nothing that strikes me as a reve­la­tion there. Really, the only plot­line that felt concluded was Kaylin’s missing persons case, and that stum­bled across along the way to West March rather than actively pursued. Overall, this install­ment felt to me like it was lacking any real closure.

  362. silentmum says:

    Am on Team Severn now — was not sure before but my reading of the Peril was that NS wants K for WHAT she is..the Chosen, etc whereas Severn loves her for who she is — if she did not have the words on her skin, he would still love her — he loves her for her humanity whereas I get the impres­sion NS ‘puts up with’ her human nature.…barely..He finds her amusing but will not let anything stand in his “barrani’ way.
    Anyway — how many months until the next one??

  363. xandra says:

    Although, the glass drag­on’s breath reminded Kaylin of shad­ow­torm, I don’t think that’s what it is, my read was that it was different than shadow storm. I also have this feeling that it’s arrival during the close­ness of the Devourer is more than simply magic flux. I think that it might have the same elemental prop­er­ties of the Devourer before it was split from the other elements.

  364. xandra says:

    Night­shade has been playing a very long game. In terms of him being called Lord Carlenenne, by the Lady, this is not a True Name calling. We don’t really know enough of his past at this point to know if Night­shade is a title or not, but it very well may be. From what I remember of Book 5, Night­shade was not outcaste at that point. But given what night­shade is, and given that he had a close rela­tion­ship with the past High Lord, he might have played the role of court assassin. I absolutely do not trust his inten­tions for Kaylin. To say she is his Consort, in addi­tion to the fact she has touched the water of life, well, it’s a little too parallel to the High Lord & the Lady for my liking. Add her status as Chosen into this, and his hinting at her possible immor­tality, well I’m not sure what to think.

  365. Bridgett says:

    I have no problem with you doing that.

  366. Wendy Good says:

    I have a theory about why the Dragons keep allowing events to post­pone Kaylin’s intro­duc­tion to the Eternal Emperor: I think the Dragons perceive the Emperor as young and are concerned she will have a bad influ­ence on his use of Barrani etiquette and Courtly propriety. 

    I think they are a lot less worried that he will be offended by her igno­rance and discour­tesy and a lot more concerned that he will like her too much!

    What do you think?

  367. Wendy Good says:

    Just to explain a little in case you didn’t already know, but this book was the result of the actual story being split into two books. It got too big for the price of a normal sized book, and Michelle needed more time to finish the rest of the story. She published the first part of the story as Cast in Chaos and will publish the rest in Cast in Sorrow, due out this August 2013. The lack of complete­ness in the story arc is delib­erate, or at least is a natural result of the story being split in half. Of course, half of one of Michelle’s stories is easily as long as a regular book! It’s one of the things we hope for and love about her. The more time spent in Elantra (for most of us), the better.

    Hope this helps.

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