Book: The WindflowerAuthor: Laura London (a.k.a. Tom and Sharon Curtis)
Page left off at: 412/spoiler level: HIGH HIGH HIGH. DANGER DANGER
The last part especially WILL ruin the book for you.
Part of the Windflower World TOUR!
Sorry, I know I am now hitting the wall of my allotted two weeks on this book, but it is very dense and rich!
I continue to not know what to think about it. I've become way more fascinated with the secondary characters than the main characters, which I suppose could be a bad sign, but these are some of the best secondary characters I have ever read in any romance/fantasy sub-genres.
I think that's because part of the deal with this book is that the center of gravity isn't the romantic pair. To me, The Windflower is more a sweeping, almost epic portrait that simply includes the pair. In more recent genre offerings, nearly everything orbits around the romance, and you may get quirky secondaries or whatever, but nothing at the richness and depth of these. I think there's a sort of 'deliver the goods' mentality out there today that I'm not immune to, but it doesn't exactly increase quality.
My great moment from last night was between Cat and his estranged father, Cathcart. I loved this. They are both so tentative with each other in their own ways. Cathcart "had learned to keep his phrases simple. In the past, anything more had sounded surprisingly insincere, even when it was meant from the heart."
Some ways into the conversation, Cat starts crying, and you really get how upset he's been about Merry, and that generally he's this young boy who's led a pirate life where you can't cry.
"Of all times, of all places for this to happen - he thrust his face into one callused palm with a sound somewhere between a gasp and a groan. In a moment he felt himself being drawn into the warm oval of his father's arms. He would have cast off the hug because he usually hated being touched, but this clasp was startling in its strength and tenderness, and the darkness around him began to recede though the sobs came harder, painfully racking contractions in his esophagus. He murmured, "This is so bloody embarrassing."Later in the hug...
"He [Cathcart] felt the slight gather of tension in his son's well-muscled shoulders, and he stepped back, gently releasing the boy, not with regret but with grateful wonder that he had had this brief first chance to hold his unchildlike child."And later...
"As he [Cat] took the comfortable chair Cathcart offered and settled into its velvet upholstery, it occurred to him that there was one thing Cathcart offered the people around him that Morgan never gave to anyone. Peace."SUPER SPOILER BELOW
Seriously, it will RUIN the book for you.
Which brings us to Morgan, who is such a complicated and delicious character. There's one point where somebody mentions that all along, Morgan has just been performing a pirate's version of matchmaking, and that was so interesting, to sort of think of him as the pirate's parallel to some old dowager trying to get a couple to cross paths at teatime, only he does it all in a sort of brutal piratey way.
And I know I made him seem sort of harmless in my 'memos' post, like he's all image, but it really isn't true. I think it's a testament to the authors' skill here that he is so compelling - you're drawn to him, but you know to be wary of him. Like one of those weird creatures at the bottom of the sea, so colorful and unique and amazing, but with a painful sting.