Belmanoir's Reviews > Kushiel's Justice

Kushiel's Justice by Jacqueline Carey
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Aug 14, 2007

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Read in August, 2007

SPOILERS below (although I've tried to keep them minor):

You know, I LOVED, I mean LOVED, the other books in the Kushiel series. This one, I just liked. I even got really bored partway through, because Imriel had been wandering around in the snow for what seemed like HUNDREDS OF PAGES. In a lot of ways this book felt like set-up for the next one. Despite the political implications of Imriel's marriage and quest and everything that was going on in Russia, it felt like the stakes for the whole second half of the book were entirely personal, and not even that great.

Also, I was once again frustrated by how Carey has set up this supposedly amazing transgressive universe where the only commandment is "Love as thou wilt," and yet she consistently shies back from anything ACTUALLY transgressive, like genuine polyamory, alternative family structures, even a MAJOR CHARACTER BEING GAY OR EVEN BI WITH A PREFERENCE FOR THE SAME GENDER. Dude, who was the last gay character? Remy or Ti-Philippe or someone? Whoever it was, I think they died like two books ago. And are you telling me that in this whole country of people who love whoever they want, there's not a single menage-a-trois? Because we ain't seen one yet, in FOUR BOOKS.

Where is the guy-on-guy action? I get that Carey is in love with her OTP, but Phedre/Joscelin was very OTP too and Phedre still got to have sex all over the place, frequently with chicks, because that is how D'Angelines roll, supposedly. Sidonie even gets to have sex with a chick. But Imriel STILL HAS NOT SLEPT WITH A SINGLE GUY. Not only do I feel cheated, but I think Carey is breaking the rules of her own world, and I don't understand why. I guess I'll have to hold out for some m/m in the last book (or just write my own, I had a cool idea for a Mavros/Imriel story), but things don't seem to be going that way. And then she had a chance to do something really interesting with an alternative family structure and instead she took the easy way out.

This was still entertaining; I was just expecting a lot more.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Jessica Not that I don't agree that the series is ridiculously heteronormative given the central premise, Imriel has slept with a guy--Lucius, in the previous book. And wasn't there something with a male adept of Valerian house earlier in this book? I don't recall, it all gets lost in the boring haze of his relationship with Sidonie.

Vanessa I think he only kissed Lucius. I don't think he slept with the adept, either, but I could be wrong. I don't really remember even though I read it a month or two ago.

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