**spoiler alert** 5 Questions I have About "And I Darken"SPOILERS AHEAD
1. Why is Radu so illogical in his jealousy? When Radu is jealous it causes him**spoiler alert** 5 Questions I have About "And I Darken"SPOILERS AHEAD
1. Why is Radu so illogical in his jealousy? When Radu is jealous it causes him to think and act illogically. Radu blames Lada for not being able to be with Mehmed, even though Mehmed is straight (and it wasn’t her fault Mehmed liked her). Believe it or not, this is the reason why Radu decided that he hated Lada. Every time someone overlooked Radu (his father, Mehmed, etc.) it was always Lada’s fault for standing out too much. He also blames Bogdan for his nurse not loving him as her own son, even though Bogdan IS the nurse’s son. Basically, Radu hates people purely for existing and getting in his way. I can't help but think every single time - "Well boo, hoo. Get over it."
2. Why does Mehmed have so many double standards? Mehmed gets mad at Lada for being happy to see Bogdan, her old friend who she hasn't seen in years, and lashes out at her. Meanwhile, Mehmed has an entire friggin house (aka Harem) dedicated to girls he has sex with on a regular basis, 2 infant sons, and a wife! ALL the while giving Lada the impression that she is special to him at the same time? No Mehmed. Your so called “duties” are not forced on you as a Sultan. You do not get a girl like Lada by treating her like she is no different from the concubines.
Also – asking Radu not to tell Lada that her father and brother died. Bad move, Mehmed. You lost your remaining likability.
3. Where was Mehmed during the fight scene with Illyas? Mehmed’s name is hardly mentioned in that scene even though he was in the room when Lada got stabbed. Here Lada is – bleeding to death and fighting to save him. And what did Mehmed do to help? Absolutely N O T H I N G. Even Radu came over to help. Like, what the hell? All those times Mehmed went off to battle did he also just stand there and pick at his nails the whole time? I found that extremely strange and telling of his character. He didn't even have a dialogue tag the entire scene - which means he stood there and said nothing when Lada was fighting to protect him.
4. Why did Lada make that stupid law proposal at the end of the book? Lada complains all the time that her father left her and Radu to die. She's annoyed at her dad for choosing his position over his children's lives. BUT then she tells Mehmed to make it a law that his sons must fight each other to death? Even when a Sultan heir doesn't want the throne or pose any threat, their lives would still be at risk. I’m pretty sure there was another solution – but Lada would rather take the easy way out and insist that an infant’s murder was necessary for the greater good. When you start making trade-offs like these, where does it stop? She wouldn’t risk her brother's life for this "greater good". Why should Mehmed risk his son’s lives? (It's bad enough she said Huma killing Mehmed's infant half brother was the right thing to do)
5. What happened to Lada/ Radu’s older brother Vlad? I know they don’t speak about him because he’s illegitimate – but why mention him if his character was going to be insignificant?
What I want to see happen in the sequal: I hope Radu gets over himself, stops worshiping Mehmed and begins to see what kind of person Mehmed really is. Mehmed, as far as I can tell, is an awful human being - he lets all the power get to his head, he uses people’s emotions to get them to do his bidding, he won’t let Lada go with him to crusades, he uses the women in his Harem like tossed tissues, and he’s so self-indulged that he wants people to sacrifice their lives to fulfill some stupid "prophecy" and stroke his huge ego. Also - he should have thanked Lada for scheming to save his life, not get angry at her. If he was a 12 year old Sultan he would have been in danger every single day.
Our only hope for a love interest: I really hope that Nicolai changes his mind about his feelings for Lada....as long as it's no longer Mehmed.
Note: I do not see this book as feminist, Lada automatically hates any girl who she thinks is pretty, weak, or too feminine. That to me doesn't seem feminist at all. Also - the one stereotypical female trait Lada was able to keep was constantly thinking of other women as competition or hating them because they might be a threat to her love interest.
Q: How old were the characters by the end of the book? I wasn't keeping track.
Also: Who is Hyundi and why do they keep on mentioning him without explaining why he's so feared?...more