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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2255 Posts

Posted - 07 Sep 2018 :  05:17:25  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
I have mixed feelings about this book. I was pretty content with Hero being the end of this long-running series, even though there were some burning questions, and characters (like Doum’wielle), that we don’t know the whereabouts of. I think an entirely new series focusing on other characters could be started.

That said, I know people have been clamoring for a Jarlaxle and Zaknafein novel. I was reluctant about the idea at first, because I really wanted to know the fate of Zak’s soul (the “good place” he was in). Now that he is back in the land of the living, I feel better about finally getting a backstory, but one burning question that I really want to know the answer to was where was Zak’s soul? It’s doubtful it was with Lolth. It was implied throughout the series he was in a good place, and Lolth admitted herself in Hero that she didn’t have him. I *really* want to know lol. Timeless didn’t answer it, but perhaps the next two will, since it is rumored to be a trilogy. Though we do find out who resurrected him, which raises even more questions, especially because it was defiance.

I was a bit disappointed that Zak didn’t remember his time in the afterlife. It felt like a way of dodging the question of where his soul was residing. I mean, I guess it’s normal for resurrected souls not to remember their time in the afterlife, but in other Forgotten Realms novels, they sometimes have vague memories. Like Fflar Starbrow from the Last Mythal trilogy. The memories weren’t clear, to be sure, but he remembered being in Arvandor. Also, Drizzt says it was the elves of the Moonwood (?) who confirmed Zak was in a good place, but wasn’t it Cadderly who summoned Zak’s spirit, and Zak spoke to Drizzt personally? I seem to remember this from Passage to Dawn.

I was pleasantly surprised by the reference to Eilistraee, veiled though it was. I really wish Bob would mention the other drow gods more. Drizzt being treated as *the* beacon of hope goes against all the work Eilistraee and Vhaeraun have done. Sure, Menzo is a Lolthite city, but E and V are still a large part of drow culture, even if they have to be secretive. But Bob seems to avoid mentioning them, and the gods in general, other than a selective few. Whatever one’s real world beliefs, the gods are a real and active force in the Realms. Not every novel has to deal with them, obviously, but Bob is basically representing the Realms at this point. It wouldn’t hurt to provide more lore.

I have heard Bob doesn’t like Eilistraee, thus why I was pleased by the veiled reference. I wonder if Zak was with her, and the priestess was placed in his path to teach him and remind him. But then why not have any memories? I realize this might be a long shot, but I’m throwing it out there.

I have always loved Valas Hune, and it was great to see him again, though Zak had some issues with his ancestor, so there may be conflict between them. Jarlaxle is…well, Jarlaxle lol. I love that guy, and he was the same in his younger years. Speaking of which, it was cool to learn about the early stages of Bregon D’earthe. Again, this would be a good instance to bring up Vhaeraun.

Yvonnel is as mysterious as ever, especially at the end. What is Lolth herself up to? Some deaths towards the end, and they seem to be going with the new trend in fantasy of happening “off screen”. And oh man…poor Kimmie. What is going to happen to him? How does that even happen to someone who basically can have tea with mind flayers?

There are some other inconsistencies and things that bothered me, but I won’t go into them. I know it seems like I am tearing this book a part. I love Drizzt, and Bob is great, but as a Realms fan, I wish he would pay more attention to being *in the Realms*, rather than just using it as a backdrop. But if you’re looking for action and adventure, it’s a great read, and Zak is back (which you already know if you’ve read Hero). Speaking of which, I felt that, while perhaps realistic when dealing with prejudice in the heat of the moment, Drizzt’s reaction to some things his father said was a bit childish and out of character for him.

But, if you’ve been reading the Drizzt books from the beginning, definitely read this one. It has its issues, but it’s Drizzt lol.

Sweet water and light laughter

Seravin
Senior Scribe

Canada
852 Posts

Posted - 07 Sep 2018 :  10:29:45  Show Profile Send Seravin a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oh great, Bob finally decided to take a bite out of Kimmuriel in this? Glad to know so I can skip it.
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
2983 Posts

Posted - 07 Sep 2018 :  10:58:39  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
How can you know that it was ref to Eilistraee? I mean, I sure hope so, but from what I'm told, she wasn't even mentioned. It's just "another goddess". It may very well be something like Shar, or Kiaransalee, or even Zinzerena (given that they are both back as well).

It would have been a veiled reference if the priestess carried some musical instrument with her, a silvery sword or crescent pendant, or if she liked to dance, or her magic manifested as moonlight or something, but (that I know) nothing like that is in the book.

To all Facebook-using FR fans, you might be interested in checking out this page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/450517575051806/

Edited by - Irennan on 07 Sep 2018 11:46:25
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Eilserus
Master of Realmslore

USA
1390 Posts

Posted - 07 Sep 2018 :  14:38:20  Show Profile Send Eilserus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I rather enjoyed the novel. I like how Zaknafein is portrayed as having a hard time coping with everything in the present. Definitely looking forward to the next novel. :)
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2255 Posts

Posted - 07 Sep 2018 :  17:31:13  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Seravin

Oh great, Bob finally decided to take a bite out of Kimmuriel in this? Glad to know so I can skip it.



It is unclear what his fate is yet, but at the end of the book...well, let's just say things weren't going very well for him. I hope that changes.

Sweet water and light laughter
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2255 Posts

Posted - 08 Sep 2018 :  05:03:11  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Irennan

How can you know that it was ref to Eilistraee? I mean, I sure hope so, but from what I'm told, she wasn't even mentioned. It's just "another goddess". It may very well be something like Shar, or Kiaransalee, or even Zinzerena (given that they are both back as well).

It would have been a veiled reference if the priestess carried some musical instrument with her, a silvery sword or crescent pendant, or if she liked to dance, or her magic manifested as moonlight or something, but (that I know) nothing like that is in the book.



I'm not 100% sure, no (thus the veiled factor), but it seemed that way, given the context. Here is the direct quote:

He looked back at the two dark elves trailing him, Braelin Janquay and Jeyrelle Fey, one of the few women in Bregon D'earthe and a priestess of some goddess who was,remarkably, not Lolth. Zaknafein had asked the beautiful amber-eyed drow for some details regarding her deity, but she had just scolded him and told him to take the point position as Jarlaxle had instructed.
That had only made Zaknafein more attracted to her, but that wasn't really all that surprising, as a drow woman with the courage to take her clerical skills to a goddess other than the Spider Queen was about as attractive as anything to Zaknafein.
(pg 211-12).


So no, it isn't certain, especially because E isn't actually mentioned, but again, it seemed like it was her, given the context, and, while, not impossible, a drow worshipng a non-drow deity is rare. Not unheard of (Liriel took to Mystra, after all), but not common.

Sweet water and light laughter
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
2983 Posts

Posted - 08 Sep 2018 :  05:29:04  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Meh, it's completely generic. It could be any goddess, really. Even among the drow deities, you have Zinzerena, who would fit Bregan d'Aerthe much better. There's also Kiaransalee.

To all Facebook-using FR fans, you might be interested in checking out this page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/450517575051806/
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2255 Posts

Posted - 08 Sep 2018 :  05:46:33  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Yeah, but I feel like those are even less likely than Eilistraee at this point lol.

Sweet water and light laughter
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
2983 Posts

Posted - 08 Sep 2018 :  05:51:37  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
If RAS doesn't like Eilistraee, then no, they aren't less likely.

To all Facebook-using FR fans, you might be interested in checking out this page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/450517575051806/
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
31516 Posts

Posted - 08 Sep 2018 :  14:50:52  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
It occurs to me to wonder why this priestess missed a clear opportunity to extol the virtues of her deity. This makes me doubt she's a priestess of Eilistraee.

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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
2983 Posts

Posted - 08 Sep 2018 :  18:20:53  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Priestesses of Eilistraee don't always preach. If they deal with drow who are already free of Lolth, they have no reason to.

To all Facebook-using FR fans, you might be interested in checking out this page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/450517575051806/
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TBeholder
Master of Realmslore

1728 Posts

Posted - 08 Sep 2018 :  19:58:29  Show Profile Send TBeholder a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by CorellonsDevout

and, while, not impossible, a drow worshipng a non-drow deity is rare.

Still, not unknown. In Underdark, but outside Sshamath, the non-drow goddess venerated by a drow priestess is most likely to be Shar.
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

It occurs to me to wonder why this priestess missed a clear opportunity to extol the virtues of her deity. This makes me doubt she's a priestess of Eilistraee.

As opposed to?
I mean, this could be said about a priestess of any other deity as well.

People never wonder How the world goes round -Helloween
And even I make no pretense Of having more than common sense -R.W.Wood
It's not good, Eric. It's a gazebo. -Ed Whitchurch
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
31516 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  00:12:29  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I should think that a priestess of Eilistraee would welcome the chance to speak of their deity to any drow that didn't worship Lolth. You're not trying to give the drow another way if you don't tell them that way exists.

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Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
2983 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  00:57:12  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
True, but this priestess was talking to someone from Drizzt&Co (Zak), they already know very well that they can choose whatever they want in life. Assuming that she was a priestess of Eilistraee (which I doubt), she wouldn't really need to talk anyone into abandoning Lolth's BS.

To all Facebook-using FR fans, you might be interested in checking out this page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/450517575051806/
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2255 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  01:19:00  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Even though it could easily NOT be Eilistraee, my reasoning for it being her was that I feel any of the other drow goddesses are even less likely than Eilistraee. If it wasn't a Drizzt book, maybe, but I feel like, if Eilistraee isn't going to be included, the chances of it being someone else are even less likely.

Sweet water and light laughter
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
31516 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  01:51:44  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Irennan

True, but this priestess was talking to someone from Drizzt&Co (Zak), they already know very well that they can choose whatever they want in life. Assuming that she was a priestess of Eilistraee (which I doubt), she wouldn't really need to talk anyone into abandoning Lolth's BS.



I'm not saying try talking them into abandoning Lolth -- I'm saying to try to convert them to Eilistraee. It's a primary mission of pretty much all FR priesthoods to get more converts, and Eilistraee in particular welcomes those who turn their backs on Lolth and her ways.

Telling a potential convert to piss off is not a normal thing for any deity, and it's even further from the norm for a worshipper of Eilistraee to say that to a drow.

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Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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Irennan
Great Reader

Italy
2983 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  01:59:43  Show Profile Send Irennan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I guess you have a point there. RAS probably tried to dodge having to deal with other deities specifically.

@CD Why? She could easily be a follower of--say--Shar, or even of a god like Mask (we're talking about a member of a band of rogues here). Zak assumes that it's a goddess, but that's because probably in his mind deity=female due to Lolth. Though I obviously hope that it's actually a ref to Eilistraee.

To all Facebook-using FR fans, you might be interested in checking out this page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/450517575051806/

Edited by - Irennan on 10 Sep 2018 02:00:15
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Squifurgie
Acolyte

6 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  02:02:25  Show Profile Send Squifurgie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I just finished Timeless a couple hours ago. I have mixed feelings on it as well. I liked some things and disliked others.

Some of the interactions between Zak and Drizzt seemed awkward and out of place. Like neither one of them was behaving in accordance with their character.

I am also very tired of all the sword fights. Do we really need the overly descriptive sword fights when the opponents are just some regular drow henchmen? We know how it's going to go. There are a few too many tedious sword fights in this book.

A few neat plot lines came out of it though.

The most interesting plot line to come out of this is Kimmuriel's predicament at the end. If/when Jarlaxle learns about that, I imagine he will spare no expense in rescuing his psionicist.

Athrogate, the poor guy can't catch a break. I don't know what this is going to do to him.

It was cool to see Valas Hune again.

Yvonell is very interesting. Her motives are a mystery still. She claims she is kind of good now but I don't buy it just yet. Neither does Jarlaxle, Drizzt or some of the others.

As a side note, I really think it's about time that Liriel Baenre is acknowledged in a Drizzt book. I am not saying she should show up and be a huge part of a story or anything like that. Just an acknowledgement that Drizzt is aware of her existence. Surely he has heard of her? Gromph is pretty closely involved with the companions now and he most definitely knows about Liriel since she is his daughter and he took special interest in her when she was young. Jarlaxle also likely knows about her because, well, Jarlaxle always knows these things. Surely she would have come up in conversation by now. I dunno, it's a little peeve of mine. She should be mentioned at some point.
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2255 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  02:03:25  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just my guess/reasoning. I could be wrong *shrugs* hopefully not though :P

Sweet water and light laughter
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Lord Karsus
Great Reader

USA
3193 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  03:55:29  Show Profile  Send Lord Karsus an AOL message Send Lord Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Squifurgie

As a side note, I really think it's about time that Liriel Baenre is acknowledged in a Drizzt book. I am not saying she should show up and be a huge part of a story or anything like that. Just an acknowledgement that Drizzt is aware of her existence. Surely he has heard of her? Gromph is pretty closely involved with the companions now and he most definitely knows about Liriel since she is his daughter and he took special interest in her when she was young. Jarlaxle also likely knows about her because, well, Jarlaxle always knows these things. Surely she would have come up in conversation by now. I dunno, it's a little peeve of mine. She should be mentioned at some point.



-If I am not mistaken, she has a reference (or two?) in Drizzt Do'Urden's Guide to the Underdark. Given that it is supposed to be written by Drizzt, he would have to have at least be aware of her existence when he wrote it.

(A Tri-Partite Arcanist Who Has Forgotten More Than Most Will Ever Know)

Elves of Faerûn
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Vol. III- Spells of the Elves
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2255 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  04:58:51  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Squifurgie

I just finished Timeless a couple hours ago. I have mixed feelings on it as well. I liked some things and disliked others.

Some of the interactions between Zak and Drizzt seemed awkward and out of place. Like neither one of them was behaving in accordance with their character.



Yes! Exactly, especially Drizzt. Sure, maybe it was realistic in regards to dealing with prejudice family members, but I expected better from Drizzt. His reaction was childish and out of character.

Sweet water and light laughter
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sno4wy
Learned Scribe

USA
303 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  06:56:24  Show Profile Send sno4wy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I personally found Drizzt's behavior to be consistent. I thought that Timeless showed him in a really unflattering way, but he's always been pretty intolerant, for all that he preaches about acceptance and empathy. I think we all expect better from Drizzt this time, because it has to do with Zaknafein. I dunno, some people apparently think that Drizzt's behavior with Zak was great and totally relatable though, so I'm hesitant to say more on this subject.
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BenN
Senior Scribe

Japan
354 Posts

Posted - 19 Sep 2018 :  04:04:34  Show Profile Send BenN a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I just finished it. On the whole, I liked it more than I expected to, and am looking forward to the sequels.

One thing that struck me is that RAS really has a thing for male characters who like nothing more than killing priestesses of Lolth (Drizzt, Zak, Jarlaxle, the Hunes, Entreri etc). The priestesses are almost invariably one-dimensional, cartoonishly evil with little to no nuance. Yvonnel is of course the exception, but we don't know who/what she really is.

Drizzt was as boring as ever, with added Gary Stu-ness from his new monk powers. I'd like to see him have a nasty accident or lose a fight, whereby he loses a limb (or something similar), rather than 'the same invincible Drizzt as before, now with added powers!!!1".

Jarlaxle was fun as ever; he really seems to be the Jack Sparrow of the Realms, with slightly less insanity.

One thing I noted towards the end; one of the minor characters got executed in a particularly nasty way, and it seems that RAS has been reading some real-life history:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scaphism

Ouch!

Edited by - BenN on 19 Sep 2018 04:05:28
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2255 Posts

Posted - 19 Sep 2018 :  04:28:56  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BenN



Jarlaxle was fun as ever; he really seems to be the Jack Sparrow of the Realms, with slightly less insanity.




Haha I have thought this, too!

Sweet water and light laughter
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