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Ask Maria > Why is the commander being a girl in the book important?

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message 1: by Book (new)

Book (readingislove) | 5 comments Hi.

I have book group tomorrow and I know this question is going to come up. I think only Maria can answer it, but one lady in my group wanted to know why did that bit need to be in the book? Could the book have been just as good without that spin?


So, I ask you all that question. Opinions welcomed!




message 2: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly | 37 comments Why not? You could ask why is Yelena magical, or why is Valek such a good assassin. I think it is important to know that the commander has 2 souls inside of him, he isn't cross dressing and thinking he is a male when he is a female or vice versa he/she is both. To me it was a matter of a different world, a magical world, and it was important because Yelena was a soul finder and so she could see inside of a body and see the right soul in that body. Maybe it didn't have to be in the book, but it was a matter of her power. She was a soulfinder, she just didn't see through his disguise, she saw into his soul. I think it added depth to the character. But maybe Maria could answer it better, since it was a question for her...


message 3: by Reema (new)

Reema | 142 comments Isn't the whole point of it to add to the reason why he/she doesn't like magic, because that happened to him/she?!
If that makes sense?


message 4: by Alethea (new)

Alethea A (frootjoos) | 481 comments Mod
Moving this thread to "Ask Maria"--hopefully she answers soon!


message 5: by Peanut (new)

Peanut | 12 comments For me it didn't really matter. It was more important to the story that s/he "magical". Maybe there was a reason but I forgot by now.


message 6: by Reema (new)

Reema | 142 comments Wasn't he magical because he had his mums spirit in him? Which adds to the reason why he doesn't like magic? I'm going to have to go back and read them all again!


message 7: by Alethea (new)

Alethea A (frootjoos) | 481 comments Mod
I never could figure out which couldn't let go--his mother's ghost of him, or he of her spirit. Or maybe it was both. You're right, I need a re-read!


message 8: by Maria (last edited Aug 22, 2009 08:33PM) (new)

Maria V. Snyder (maria_v_snyder) | 186 comments Interesting discussion :) The Commander's dual personality surprised me when I was writing the book, and I like to be surprised and I think my readers enjoy a nice unexpected twist ;> I don't think the book would have been the same without it - I think it adds to the story and characters.

Also like Reema said, the Commander's fear of magic makes more sense because of the extra soul. He's afraid a magician will unmasked him (so to speak) and how can you trust a Commander who's been lying to you? Plus he knows he's a man trapped in a woman's body, and to acknowledge the female would be to reject his own soul.

He didn't know magic was the cause of his problems - not on a conscious level anyway.

The mother couldn't let go of the son. Magicial powers don't manifest until the person hits puberty - complicating a life already confused and hormonally out of control ;>

I hope this helps :)


message 9: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 175 comments I think I'm still confused. If the mother couldn't let go of the son and her spirit was infused with the son, wouldn't it have been a female and male spirit in a male body?


message 10: by Maria (new)

Maria V. Snyder (maria_v_snyder) | 186 comments Rachel - the mother dominated, and the female body is a magical illusion - but since the magic is part of the soul, it's very hard for any other magicians to pick up on it. The Commander wrestled control of his mind when he grew up, and now he either needs to take control of his body or have his mother evicted :)

Does that help?


message 11: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly | 37 comments Wow, Maria, is that a hint as to something that may come up in a future book?


message 12: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (javallone23) | 11 comments I think that would be awesome to read about in a future book. I think it's a great concept and adds another magical element to the story. We have learned so much about the Commander through others and it would be awesome to read about the Commander through his perspective and how he's dealing with his "two souls".


message 13: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 175 comments Maria- Thank you very much. That helps a lot! I hope the Commander can take back control over his body. I wouldn't ever want that to happen to me- talk about over-bearing parenting. :)


message 14: by Maria (new)

Maria V. Snyder (maria_v_snyder) | 186 comments Rachel - glad it helped :)

Kimberly - maybe ;>

Jennifer - I would love to write about the Commander and Valek before the take over and during it. Although I'm not sure how I would work in a love interest ;>


message 15: by Kyle (new)

Kyle Borland (kgborland) I think a book focusing on the Commander would be awesome :D

Out of all the characters him and Valek interest me the most. Though I think the Commander wins out over Valek ;D


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