‘The Way of Kings’ Read-Along (Week 6)

Posted 5 February, 2014 by Lianne in Books / 4 Comments

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Anya from Starships and Dragonwings and Nrlymrtl from Dab of Darkness are hosting a read-along starting in January for Brandon Sanderson’s The Way of Kings. Please check out THIS POST for more details on how to participate, the schedule of chapters covered and how to learn more about a giveaway that Tor is hosting.

Happy Wednesday! How time is flying by, it’s already week 6 of the (re-)read-along xD Just a heads up that we are currently hosting a book giveaway for a chance to win copies of The Way of Kings and the upcoming installment, The Words of Radiance, courtesy of Tor.com and fellow read-along hosts. Be sure to check it out! 🙂

Anyway, this week we are looking at Chapters 33 to Chapter 42, the questions kindly put together by Nikki @ There Were Books Involved. As always, SPOILERS ahead! 🙂 I will especially try my best to answer the following questions as I’m actually a bit ahead right now in the book and I’m starting to recall more and more details (oops *blushes*)

1. Both Kabsal and Jasnah have spoken to Shallan about stealing the Soulcaster, and both have done so in a pretty lighthearted manner, considering how serious it would actually be to steal it. Do you think Kabsal was telling the truth when he brushed off Shallan’s questions about his plan to steal the Soulcaster? Is he still interested in stealing it? Does he have other, deeper motives??
I think I mentioned a few weeks ago that I didn’t entirely trust Kabsal. I mean, it’s nice that Jasnah has someone else to talk to and I sense a bit of chemistry between the two (or is that just me?) but to mention something like that so casually, it’s as if he wants to throw Shallan–and the readers in the process–into a false sense of security (ugh, again, I blame tricksy writers for making me so suspicious of such activities =P). But what would be his deeper motives, maybe something to do with his (and his order’s? Don’t remember if his presence there was of his own volition or if he was ordered to) attempts to convert Jasnah? What do you guys think?

2. By the end of the section, Shallan has found out that she’ll be able to return home in one week, but she’s torn between wanting to continue her studies, and being able to take the stolen Soulcaster home. So far it looks like her theft hasn’t been detected, but do you think she’ll be found out before that time? Do you think she should leave, or might decide on her own to stay? Could something else happen to make her stay?
Gah, tension like this always kills me because anything could happen in a span of a week. She could be discovered during that time, she might have a change of heart and decide to stay, maybe even return the Soulcaster out of guilt, maybe something else will happen while she is working with Shallan…

3. How much do you think Jasnah actually knows about the theft of her Soulcaster? Is it even remotely possible that Jasnah is still in the dark about it? If she knows, did she in fact dupe Shallan with a fake, as Shallan theorizes? Or did Jasnah let her steal it? Why??
Okay, memory is a little hazy at the moment but Jasnah’s philosophy lesson out on the street already occurred at this point, right? If so, I remember thinking at one point that it could be the latter, that Jasnah does know about Shallan’s plans and allowed Shallan to steal it a part of Shallan’s on-going education. But then the way that Jasnah goes about with her ongoing project and the way she’s acting, she could still be completely oblivious of what Shallan has done…I know, I know, I’m arguing for both sides for the past few questions but I’m trying to be spoiler-free and I was going back and forth between the two options when I was reading the chapters 😉

4. During the Highstorm, Kaladin experiences a lull during which the wind and rain stop, he feels no more pain, and he sees an enormous “face of blackness, yet faintly traced in the dark”. The face is described as, “Inhuman. Smiling.” Was Kaladin just hallucinating? If not, do you think this being had something to do with recharging the sphere? With Kaladin somehow feeling better before the storm kicked up again? Or could this being be malevolent? Thoughts/theories??
This was a pretty crazy, epic moment. There’s been a slow build-up concerning Kaladin and his remarkable abilities, his “luck”, and this event certainly points to something going on with Kaladin. Like Dalinar, there’s something about the highstorms that…well, he experiences something. Was that figure really there or was it a shadow from the past? Thinking about it now and basing it from where I am in the book right now, I think I have an idea but I’m not sure…

5. Before Kaladin is forced to endure the Highstorm, he tells his men to come out after the storm is over; he says he’ll open his eyes and look back at them, and they’ll know that he survived. Kaladin obviously survives, and everyone in Bridge Four is really glad about that. But we haven’t yet seen a reaction from anyone other than Kal’s men. Do you think Kaladin’s survival could have a wider impact than just giving his own group of bridgemen hope?
I think so because he was sentenced to endure the Highstorm by the Prince Sadeas. His survival, while providing hope to his bridgemen, may not necessarily be looked upon favourably by the High Prince or by others from that strata. They might just brush it off as luck or a trick, but others might look at it with distrust too, not in a “This is a sign from the Almighty!” but maybe even in a “This guy is weird and trouble.” Kaladin’s lucky to have kept whatever strange abilities he’s developing contained within his own ranks but if word gets out, things will end badly for Bridge Four and Kaladin.

6. We learn quite a bit about Teft in this section… kind of. But pretty much everything we learn just leads to more questions. What do you think about these “Envisagers” Teft mentions? How much do you think Teft knows about Kaladin’s ability to use Stormlight? It seemed like Teft became wary of Kaladin after he recovered – why? Do you think he’ll tell Kaladin about what he knows?
I thought that was an interesting chapter as others are beginning to notice that there’s something strange happening to Kaladin (the description of what happens to Kaladin kind of reminds me of a Time Lord who’s just recently undergone regeneration in the new Who =P). I remember thinking in this chapter that maybe the Envisagers that Teft was referring to was some kind of order who knew a lot about…whatever this sort of business is (“The Envisagers were gone. Dead, because of what he had done. If there were others, he had no idea how to locate them.” — OMG, Teft is a rebel Time Lord! =P). I think he’ll be important later on, especially once Kaladin comes to his own about…whatever is going on with him =P

…And those are my thoughts for this week on The Way of Kings! What did you think of these chapters? It feels like things are slowly starting to come together and we’re getting some answers but they could be more crystal clear =P

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4 Responses to “‘The Way of Kings’ Read-Along (Week 6)”

  1. Yeah I’m suspicious of Kasbal as well. I really want to like him, but he kind of seems to be checking up on Shallan, trying to figure out where her head is at. I agree that anything can happen in a week. I think when she tries to leave, this whole situation is going to blow up in her face, and chances are it won’t be in the way we expect. One theory I have about Kaladin’s survival is this: The being in the storm might be responsible for recharging the spheres. Kaladin can absorb the energy of the spheres. So maybe the being recognized that ability in him and spared him. Either way, I agree that this incident and the voice in Dalinar’s visions must be related. It’s all about the high storms! 😀

  2. I was getting really weird vibes about the way Kabsal brushed off the ardent’s interest in the Soulcaster as well – like maybe he’s working alone? Or at least not with the ardents, but with some other group?? GAH. I totally feel the chemistry between Kabsal and Shallan though, they are ADORABLE. Which makes me even more afraid that something bad will happen.

    Yes, this is the section where Jasnah went out looking for those robbers/murders and killed them in “self-defense”. I’m favoring the “Jasnah allowed Shallan to steal the Soulcaster FOR PHILOSOPHY” theory right now, haha.

    I’m definitely worried about Kaladin’s reputation among the lighteyes after his survival of the storm. But I’m also really curious to see how this idea of the “miracle survivial” might spread, probably first through the bridgemen… and then who knows?? Teft seems to know something pretty important about Kaladin, sort of in the vein of Kaladin maybe gaining hero-status eventually? Erm, I don’t know how to word it. It just seems like Kaladin is obviously destined for Really Big Things, and his survival might just be the first step to gaining him a reputation for those Big Things. Yay/AHHHHH.


  3. Time Lords! Yes, that must be the explanation. Kaladin regenerated with the same face, though… vanity problem? 😀

    I definitely think Kaladin’s miraculous survival and recovery are going to attract some attention.

    Another idea someone else proposed on Jasnah and Shallan was that maybe Jasnah was soulcasting from innate abilities, and the soulcaster wasn’t really necessary. That would explain why it doesn’t work for Shallan, and why Jasnah doesn’t seem to notice the switch. I’m going back and forth between that and believing Jasnah is letting Shallan agonize over the theft as a lesson. If that’s the case, I’m sure she won’t let Shallan run off home.

  4. This is a reread for me, but I do remember my first time through and I couldn’t tell if Jasnah had set Shallan up with a fake, or was testing her in some way, or was oblivious. We’ve seen Jasnah do a handful of big things, and then a few tiny things, but i don’t have the impression that Jasnah uses the fabrial weekly. I remember being tormented by this tension, really felt like I was in Shallan’s shoes.

    Teft, such a mystery. I wonder what happened to him to make his so closed mouth? Maybe it was part of his upbringing to keep himself to himself?

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