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Book 2: Avempartha > **BEWARE: Avempartha and TCC Spoiler Discussion**

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message 1: by Michael (new)

Michael (michaeljsullivan) | 347 comments Mod
What was left on Archibald's lap while he slept in the Gray Tower?

What does Valentryne Layartren mean?

Unless you know the answers to BOTH of these questions, you should not read any farther. This is a thread for those who have COMPLETED reading both THE CROWN CONSPIRACY and AVEMPARTHA.

**You have been warned!**

message 2: by Robin (new)

Robin (robinsullivan) | 268 comments Mod
So I've been dying to have someone to talk to this about...well other than Michael - he's no fun to discuss it with....

One of the best things I like about book 2, and no one has brought it up that it completely rewrites book 1. I hear from so many people who say....oh it was far to easy to figure out who was behind Amrath's murder. I knew Braga was responsible all along -- but then when you read book 2 it turns out that Arista, Braga, and the Church were all maniputlated by Esrahaddon to get Alric to free him. I thought it really played up on the "unpredictability" of the plot - "Things are never what they seem in this series" and really let you know that Esrahaddon is very "ends justify the means" kind of guy.

Now when I hear people saying how "cliche" it is to have the chancellor be responsible for the king's death I just have to bite my tongue and hope they read the second one!

I also think it was cool that Esrahaddon was able to "arrange for this" while tightly locked up!!

message 3: by Jim (new)

Jim (jimmaclachlan) I'm glad to see this topic, but I REALLY don't need another group. (Oh, heck. What's one more?) I've been biting my tongue in a lot of the discussions about TCC. It's all your fault for letting me read Avempartha first! (Thanks!)

Reading the two out of order didn't ruin the suspense for me. I was quite pleased to find that out & lay it to the way Michael filled in the story from the previous book. No wordy prologue, just enough hints to let me know it had happened, not really how though. Tough line to walk, but you managed it. Congrats!

message 4: by Robin (new)

Robin (robinsullivan) | 268 comments Mod
So glad to hear it Jim - and thanks for being a gienna pig and doing them out of order. The hope of course is that you could read them out of sync -- and my thought was if you read 2 you would want to read one to find out what you missed ;-)

It will be interesting to see what others thing now that the signing tour has started. There may be some in that who pick up 2 first. Although I think so far most people are either buying both or starting with TCC.

message 5: by Libby (new)

Libby | 30 comments Oh my - finished Avempartha, read it in three days. What a ride! I don't know how I'm going to wait until October for the next book! Now that I've read Avempartha, I can't wait to re-read TCC. It's like putting puzzles pieces together - you think you know how they will fit, but, then again. . .

The lingering mystery for me in book 2 is who let that bad boy out of the tower? And wasn't it just perfect how that situation brought the two people Esra needed to help him out? Hmm. . .

All that said, I was quite sad to see the loss of some great characters. I know it only strengthens my emotional ties to Elan but it was still hard to let some characters go - especially Fanen.

Great reintroduction to Hadrian and Royce - just when I think of them as lovable, oh, by the way, they still are thieves and killers. Perfect blend of humor and suspense. Great characters - it's like I've found new friends who I can't wait to know better.

Also, I really like the situation Thrace is left in - poor child has been left emotionally destitute - so many terrible things can grow out of that.

When it isn't past midnight I'll put all of this into a more coherent book review for posting but I just had to get it all out!

message 6: by Jim (new)

Jim (jimmaclachlan) I think Hadrian is defined. He's a descendant of the other protector of the last, young emperor. His fighting skills pointed to that in TCC. His close ties to Royce, their mutual respect & affection, point to Royce being the long lost heir, as does Royce's dagger, BUT we still have the Elven thing going on.

It's been made clear that men took the lands from the Elves who oppressed them. Now man oppresses Elves or half Elves that are in their kingdom. Royce shows signs of being Elvish. His eye sight, nimbleness & hatred of those who oppress the Elves. Could it be he is just a better man who hates to see any of 'his people', including even half-Elves, beat on? Could he be both half-Elven & the heir?

I don't see Royce as being the heir, though. His current character doesn't fit the part. Also, the wizard doesn't recognize him as that, but he might recognize Hadrian for what I think he is...

Just thinking out loud until somebody gets that third book out... (Hurry up, Michael! Inquiring minds want to know!)


message 7: by Libby (new)

Libby | 30 comments Jim - absolutely agreed as to Hadrian. I'm 99% sure he's the protector except that I fear Michael likes to twist and turn his plots - seems like there is always something more to it.

I also don't think Royce is the heir but I'm clueless as to who it is. I've got some re-reading to do to look for clues.

I really enjoyed hearing a part of the Elves history in Avempartha. Very interesting. Love how they are watching and biding their time.

message 8: by Jim (last edited Apr 11, 2009 05:02AM) (new)

Jim (jimmaclachlan) I think the Pickering family could be the heirs. Depending on how twisty Michael gets, Hadrian could be the Heir & they could be the protectors or they could be related, both descended from the protector. Their fighting skills & honor point to close ties & they are all designated protectors of the kingdom at this point.

From what I recall about the Emperor, he was powerful magically as well, but I don't recall or it wasn't clear if that was from an innate talent, training or a special weapon. I think at one point, a weapon was pointed to, but I don't think that's the entire story. Royce seems to have innate talents that could make him a good candidate, but I think it's likely we haven't met the Heir yet.

Unless Royce's personality undergoes a lot of growth/change, he's not the Emperor type, IMO. It wouldn't be too huge a step for his personality & there are 4 more books in which to make the move. We've seen that he can lead, he's ruthless & caring enough. The new king made a larger change when he took over from his father...

Obviously, I'm clueless. It is fun guessing, though.

message 9: by Danielle (new)

Danielle (queentess) | 14 comments I'm also completely clueless about the heir. I'm wondering if Hadrian is descended from "the" Protector - the one who ran off with the heir was given the amulet - but if the Pickerings are descended from the other Protectors, the ones who stayed behind. (iirc, they weren't killed off, were they?) It could explain the difference in dedication to the fighting style that was passed down to the Pickerings and Hadrian.

The book states that the heir is a well known somebody, so I think that implies it's someone we've already met. I just wish I had an idea as to who!

Michael: write faster!! :)

message 10: by Libby (new)

Libby | 30 comments Danielle wrote: "I'm also completely clueless about the heir. I'm wondering if Hadrian is descended from "the" Protector - the one who ran off with the heir was given the amulet - but if the Pickerings are descend..."

Danielle - good thought about Hadrian the Pickerings! I like that idea.

Since the heir is someone they all know - how about Myron? Just a wild guess. My only reservation about any of the noble families is that they would have long family histories and would likely know if they descended from the Emperor - wouldn't you think?

I'm still very sad about the loss of Fanen :-(

message 11: by Danielle (last edited Apr 12, 2009 10:58AM) (new)

Danielle (queentess) | 14 comments I initially thought Myron too (trying to think of "minor" characters that it could be), but he just recently came out of the monastery (not "well known"), plus he's the third born (hence the monastery...) so one of his elder brothers would technically be the heir.

My next guess was someone not famous in the TCC world, but instead just someone with whom Royce is acquainted. The actual wording of the sentence is a little ambiguous. "Funny, I {Royce} expected the heir and his guardian to be unknown farm boys from some place - well - like this I suppose. Someone I never heard of."

So technically speaking, maybe it's not someone "famous", maybe it's just someone well known to Royce. After all, Hadrian (assuming he's actually the guardian) is lumped into this sentence.

So perhaps it's someone from the brothel they hung out in? Or a lesser noble who maybe came upon his/her title through sheer luck? Maybe Archibald (who I hate so)? I started re-reading the first book (I know - I wanted to wait to October, but I want so badly to put the pieces together *now*) and there's a brief mention of Degan Gaunt, the leader (?) of the Nationalist movement. Also supposedly the person that Alenda (Myron's sister) was having an affair with. The thing that caught my eye was the sentence that reads "...(Degan) is a mere commoner without a single drop of royal blood in his veins." And this secret meeting was also the entire reason the monastery was burned to the ground. Is there more of a story here? Or am I jumping at shadows? I don't know, but it's fun to speculate :)

message 12: by Elise (last edited Apr 17, 2009 11:45AM) (new)

Elise (ghostgurl) | 56 comments I just finished Avemparthayesterday and thought it was miles above The Crown Conspiracy. I was totally hooked! I liked reading about all the new background history.

I was so sad when Fanen and Theron died. I actually had a feeling at least one person was going to die, but I wasn't sure who.

My favorite scene is probably when Hadrian was teaching Theron how to sword fight. I thought all the sword fighting and action scenes were well described.

The Gilarabrywn was an awesome creature, but I'm biased since I like dragon-like creatures. It was downright scary too!

I kinda knew Esrahaddon was going to be more of a gray character. Wasn't even shocked when admitted to Arista he was responsible for killing the king. I do think that somehow by the end of the series he's going to turn out for the good, but perhaps the means in which he gets there won't appear to be so for the good side. He definitely knows more than he lets on. I'm very curious as to what he's up to with finding the heir and everything. I'm sure there's more than meets the eye about him.

I have no idea who the heir is actually going to be, maybe Hadrian, but I don't think that's likely. It could be someone we haven't seen yet.

I expect we might see more elves too. Now that we know Royce's origins he might try to reunite with them. At least it's hinted at towards the end, when Royce thinks he sees some figures through the trees. Maybe learn some more about his family perhaps? I also liked seeing Royce's more ruthless side coming out. He himself has some shades of gray because he won't hesitate to kill someone, if he really wants to.

I don't think we've seen the last of the Nyphron Church what with Thrace becoming empress and all. I think she's going to be in some deep trouble. I'm expecting the church will be the main bad guy throughout the series. Maybe there will even be a war at the end with humans and elves fighting against the oppressive church. Who knows?

Anyway, now I can't wait for book 3!

message 13: by Kathy (last edited Apr 21, 2009 11:28AM) (new)

Kathy | 56 comments Danielle wrote: "I'm also completely clueless about the heir. I'm wondering if Hadrian is descended from "the" Protector - the one who ran off with the heir was given the amulet - but if the Pickerings are descend..."

You all are writing like Hadrian is the protector, like it's set in stone!

I clearly recall Esrahaddon stating prior to the scrying (or whatever you called the spell) stating that there were amulets given to both the protector and to the heir at the time of the rebellion to hide them from everyone but Esra. Now, the heir may have loved studying The Art, but he also loved to study the art of combat. The protector and the heir had a ton of time with one another--what makes you think that the current heir is inferior in combat than the descendant of the protector?

One of a million other questions that I have: does possessing the magicked amulet automatically mean that a person is either the heir or the protector? Not quite, but Hadrian's response to Royce leads me to believe that whoever Hadrian really is, that he is legit. I vote "heir" for Hadrian, but would not be one bit surprised if he was a protector after all. Think back to TCC where he and Royce are floating down the river wondering what to do with their lives if they stop thieving... Maybe the answer just smacked us all in the head!

No way is Royce either the heir or the protector. I think that he has a grander part to play in the elf kingdom than he would in being the heir. Wouldn't he have had some kind of heart attack or something if he found out he WAS the heir? I mean, three people in the world of Elan know who the likely heir is: Esrahaddon, Arista, and Royce. By virtue of this, I just don't think that it's either Royce or anyone in the Essendon line.

By process of elimination, I don't think that Thrace is the true Empress b/c why would Esra leave the area if she was nearby, as well as Hadrian, if he was going to find the heir?

This whole question is going to drive me nuts until October, I swear. I like the Degan Gaunt theory, but wouldn't that be a bit obvious, too?

message 14: by Kathy (new)

Kathy | 56 comments Stupid question, but I totally missed this answer:

What does Valentryne Layartren mean?

I remember in another thread talking about Royce's horse's name, but I totally blanked about this, as I finished Avempartha a couple of weeks ago and my memory is already fading a bit... :)

message 15: by Libby (new)

Libby | 30 comments It's the place they go to do the spell and discover the heir - so frustrating because it's sitting right there on the edge of my brain and I can't think of it! It's a magic seeing place in the tower- uggh - I'll have to look at teh book when I get home.

message 16: by Michael (new)

Michael (michaeljsullivan) | 347 comments Mod
Kathy wrote: "What does Valentryne Layartren mean?"

Perhaps I should provide easier clues?

BTW, I love all the speculation--sadly I can't join in.

message 17: by Libby (new)

Libby | 30 comments Oh you and your "artistic vision" - sadly, we all can't carry the book everywhere we go

message 18: by Danielle (new)

Danielle (queentess) | 14 comments Kathy wrote: "I clearly recall Esrahaddon stating prior to the scrying (or whatever you called the spell) stating that there were amulets given to both the protector and to the heir..."

You're so right! It didn't even occur to me that he could be the heir because of his supreme fighting skills. Hrm.

message 19: by Libby (new)

Libby | 30 comments Danielle wrote: "Kathy wrote: "I clearly recall Esrahaddon stating prior to the scrying (or whatever you called the spell) stating that there were amulets given to both the protector and to the heir..."

You're so ..."

Nope - I'm keeping my money on Hadrian for protector. I know it seems too obvious but I'm going with Occam's razor here - the simplest explanation is usually the best one.

I'm pretty interested to see where Gaunt's story goes but I don't think he's the heir. Frankly, I'm baffled on that one.

message 20: by Kathy (new)

Kathy | 56 comments Well, it's likely a 50-50 shot, so we can talk and talk and speculate all we want--to the ROTFL response of the author--but it's way too much fun not to.

Libby--I don't carry my copy around with me everywhere, either, but I do remember the part with the amulets. Don't have one of those Kindle things to save a million books to, but it might be worth the investment if I don't get any more good bookshelf space at home...

message 21: by Kathy (new)

Kathy | 56 comments Michael wrote: "Kathy wrote: "What does Valentryne Layartren mean?"

Perhaps I should provide easier clues?

BTW, I love all the speculation--sadly I can't join in.


Yeah, what about Royce's horse's name? That one was easy to remember, at least.

message 22: by Libby (new)

Libby | 30 comments Mouse! Loved it!

Kathy - I know that Kindle is a great way to carry tons of books with you but I'd be sad without actual pages to turn - I love the physical book. However, my house is also slowly being taken over by towers of books crammed everywhere ;-)

message 23: by Adam (new)

Adam Franklin | 8 comments Wow - there is a lot in this thread that needs to broken into seperate ones .... I want to go back and address each thing mentioned but I don't have enough time right now.

Hadrian definitely the guardian but its obvious to me that Royce is not the heir. Several reasons for this 1 - He's an elf and
2 - Esrahaddon runs off to find the heir

I love Thrace and will be interested to see where thigngs go with her being used as a puppet for the New Empire - she is just strong enough to be able to turn the tables on them and I'm interested to see where that will go.

I found it interesting that Esrahaddon was the catalyst for getting the king in book 1 killed - he is very Machavellian (sp) and I'm still not sure if it is is a good or bad thing that he is "on the loose".

Fannen...I was so sad to see him killed - I love the Pickerings (especially Mauvin) who is always so cocky. Some of my favorite scenes in these books are Mauvin and Hadrian sparing.

I'll come back and post more later.

message 24: by Michael (new)

Michael (michaeljsullivan) | 347 comments Mod
The sparing scenes are some of my wife's favorite scenes too.

message 25: by Robin (new)

Robin (robinsullivan) | 268 comments Mod
yes they are ;-) And any scene where Hadrian draws a sword - even if he doesn't use it.

message 26: by Heather (new)

Heather (ham1299) | 232 comments Adam ~ I so wanna comment, but I've read 'em all so far, so I won't. I don't want to spoil anything for you. I will say, though, that you are very perceptive!

message 27: by Robin (new)

Robin (robinsullivan) | 268 comments Mod
Then you are going to love Percepliquis ;-)

message 28: by Robin (new)

Robin (robinsullivan) | 268 comments Mod
You and me both...I actually became depressed the first time I read Percepliquis - I was in a funk for about 3 weeks.

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