Foreigner Series: Spoiler Alerts: Page 2

I’m giving the page a second section because page 1 was starting to behave oddly.

As always, wait at least 30 days from issue of the book before starting to discuss. And give our overseas friends some extra leeway: the distribution system doesn’t reach everywhere as fast!


  1. scenario_dave

    I always assumed that Jago came from the same region as Banichi, although that’s not for sure. I always wondered if Banichi had something to do with raising Jago.

    • Neco-ji

      It is quite possible. CJ herself said that a Guild mother (assuming Jago’s mother is Guild) is likely to cede the child to the father. How that works if the father is Guild, I dunno.

      And Machigi did comment on Bren’s accent, and Bren said it was because his aishid’s accent was more Southern. Having spent his earliest days with Banichi (the known born Southerner of the team) and Jago, it is likely Bren picked up their accent simply from close contact, and possibly not even consciously.

    • chesty

      In light of Ilisidi’s southern agenda and connections, I have wondered if she had some part in getting someone like Banichi and Jago assigned to the Paidhi’s guard. I remember the tension between Cenedi and Banichi early on, though. So, maybe not. But one can’t help being suspicious.

      • Neco-ji

        Peacemaker says that Banichi was… not in disgrace, but in some difficulty with Assignments due to his conflict with Haikuti. His earliest assignments were probably pretty unfortunate in one way or another… or at the very least, “unglamorous”. He was probably looking at a long career of difficult and unflattering jobs, until Tabini somehow got a hold of him and got him assigned straight to his own personal guard, which would have been a HUGE promotional achievement for him at the time.

        When Jago joined him as a partner, we don’t know. I still hold up a little hope that we might find out more about Banichi and Jago (well, and Tano and Algini too, of course).

        Even after all of my own rereads, I’m having difficulty piecing together all the subtleties, and the dynamic between Cenedi and Banichi in Foreigner is one of those bits. I think (and this is after umpteen dozen rereads of Foreigner) that Tabini was technically sending Bren to Ilisidi, and Banichi and Jago were there mostly to keep him out of the worst of trouble, but not to interfere when Cenedi and Ilisidi made their move to get the information they wanted. In their escape from Malguri, Bren running to save Banichi threw things a little for a loop, and that created further tension. Plus Banichi had just broken his ankle, and knew he was at considerable disadvantage. I can’t imagine that was helping his frame of mind.

    • rylarkin

      Jago is Banichi’s daughter, per book 3? (I think.) On the station, before they take it.

  2. Rigeldeneb

    I suppose Braddock on Mospheira might work, unless the nearly-defunct Heritage Party overcomes its quarrel with the Pilots Guild and seeks to resurrect itself with Braddock to rally around. Braddock and the Heritage Party are both xenophobes. The Heritage Party, represented by Deanna Hanks (how long ago that history seems!), once swallowed its racism long enough to ally with atevi politicking against Tabini; I can see its members swallowing animus against the Pilots Guild long enough to once again attempt to push their humans-first-and-only agenda.

    Let the politicking begin. . .

    • rylarkin

      I can’t imagine a single place for Braddock that he wouldn’t cause major trouble. Anyone who would do what he did (implants, ugh!) to his own security without their knowledge and consent is beyond redemption.

  3. Rigeldeneb

    On the query of when Damiri first comes into the story: I think she is mentioned in Foreigner, part of a discussion between Tabini and Bren about their non-political lives during that vacation at Taiben, and I think her first appearance is in Invader. I may be wrong. A good reason to re-read both books, yes?

    I do remember that Tabini calls Damiri “Miri-ji” and “Lily-daja” in the earlier books and “Dami-ji” in the later books.

  4. scenario_dave

    The Heritage Party is generally disliked because the people believe that they wrecked the economy. The Pilots Guild is almost universally hated by the people of Mospheira. The two of them linking up would not be a very good political move.

    I’m sure that they can find some kind of legitimate charge to put Braddock in prison for a couple of years. By the time he gets out, the stations problems will be on their way to being solved. He would just be one more fringe personality that no one listens to.

  5. rockwestfahl

    Just finished Tracker. What a nice bit of storytelling. I assume that CJ is planning to write another quadrilogy (Is that a word?)for this part of the saga. It has a more cliffhanger ending than some but that would fit in with it being part of a sub series. Lots of new characters and more development of the old ones. The arc of the story seems to be the integrating of Atevi and Human culture. I await the next installment with delight. I drive my local librarian crazy checking on it. I have all but demanded they buy every book in the series. Also am a fan of the Finisterre stories and would love to see them continued. Any chance?

    • CJ

      Finisterre had a publisher fall out from under them, and it’s kind of in the back of my mind what happens next, but I have several more commitments. Maybe someday I’ll do one. Or a short story.

  6. chesty

    Two things have lately been nagging at me, posing a question in their twofullness. I mean Ilisidi’s odd question about submarines and her apparently long term plan for a southern trade sea route. Are these things connected? I suspect they are, and I know Ilisidi is a past master of all things related to power. What sophisticated engines would she expect the Paidhe might suggest to power these merchant submarines? That would not be idle curiosity on her part.

    Wouldn’t it be nice to see the Atevi vault past all the polluting sources of power to the kind of clean power that humans of our time keep insisting is right around the corner? Cold fusion, matter converters, or whatever. Surely, people who can make FTL drives will know how to produce that sort of thing. Will they not? Okay, now imagine that the devices for rendering such power must be made in the free-fall of space. Oh, wouldn’t that be interesting?

  7. scenario_dave

    Humans and atevi are interacting with each other more and more as they become scientific equals. It’s happening first on the station. It will probably happen on the planet soon. Humans and atevi should only interact 3 ways, Lord to Lord, in narrowly defined work situations or though specially trained guild members. But how do we train the guild when humans and atevi don’t mix? This is where I think Toby could help.

    Give Toby permission to visit Bren’s estate at any time, whether or not Bren’s there. This allow him to improve his language skills. Have him continue to act as go between between Tabini-aiji and the President. Also allow him to interpret for Lords in disputes with humans when Tabini-aiji wants to keep it low key. And allow him to bring humans for two or three hour visits to carefully prepared parts of Bren’s estate. The humans get off the boat to a tent set up on the dock where they have a meal served by servants who talk Mospheiran and later they can buy stuff from merchants who also speak Mospheiran. Toby doesn tell any of them that all of the atevi that they meet are guild members and that everything that they do is recorded. The whole purpose is to have a controlled supply of new humans for the guild to practice talking to.

    • chesty

      Like the Station, where Humans and Atevi can expect to interact on a regular basis? This is a very interesting idea. Not just the Guild. I’m thinking of actual tourists among the security agents, maybe from both sides? Could be good training for the “guides”. 😉

  8. scenario_dave

    My impression is that interactions between Humans and Atevi are very limited on the station. There certainly aren’t any bars or other businesses that both go to.

    The tourist idea is so the guild can have new humans that they can observe and interact with on a regular basis. Humans get a legitimate and safe way to interact with Atevi and the Atevi get to train guild agents so that they are in a better position to handle Atevi/Human contact. The fact that they are guild is not a secret, just not mentioned. If someone asks, they say something like, of course they are guild, what did you expect?

    For 200 years, Atevi were the big bad guys for most Humans and Humans were the big bad guys for most Atevi. People coming for a visit either way on purpose were pretty rare. Now that they share the space station peacefully, the demand for interaction will get stronger. Humans and Atevi can interact peacefully and productively but it would go much better with trained guild agents around.

  9. scenario_dave

    How did trade between Humans and Atevi work before Bren? I assume that Human companies sent requests to the Presidents office who sent it to the Aji’s office. I’m guessing that the Mospheirans had a form letter.

    Standard polite opening.
    We would like, 3 of these, 7 of those and 15 of the other in exchange for 15 of something else.
    Polite close.

    Atevi had something similar or had the Paidhi write it.

    All of the trade items were on a list of authorized trade products.

    But how were they delivered? If they were on Atevi ships, then Atevi were regularly on Mospheiran land. Did they have a drop off island somewhere in the middle? Did they deliver only to one specific port? Did the Atevi sailors allow humans on their ship to take the goods off?

    If Atevi sailors were regularly on Mospheiran land then there has been regular contact between the species and not just through the Paidhi.

    • Hanneke

      I’d think the delivery would be organised the way it’s handled for airplanes and the shuttle (and the hand-off on the station), which we’ve had small glimpses of.
      Communication would be limited to stock phrases, queries and answers, pre-translated by the paidhi and his predecessors. People who would need to have contact with the other side would need to learn these phrases by heart before getting a job where they would be needed; or maybe a lot of them could be pre-programmed under specific walky-talky buttons.
      The visiting crew doesn’t leave their ship; any onshore jobs (like attaching a fuel hose) are done by the local crew without boarding the plane or ship.
      There probably was a specific harbor and berth/jetty where they would be allowed to tie up, and that would be equipped with whatever is needed to offload and load with minimal contact. Maybe something like modern containerships: everything packed in standardized crates or containers, that can be manipulated by a crane-operator either from a shipside crane or one on shore, depositing the load in marked-off locations. From that point it can be taken on by the opposite crew, without further contact or communication being necessary.

    • Hanneke

      I’d think the delivery would be organised the way it’s handled for airplanes and the shuttle (and the hand-off on the station), which we’ve had small glimpses of.
      Communication would be limited to stock phrases, queries and answers, pre-translated by the paidhi and his predecessors. People who would need to have contact with the other side would need to learn these phrases by heart before getting a job where they would be needed; or maybe a lot of them could be pre-programmed under specific walky-talky buttons.
      The visiting crew doesn’t leave their ship; any onshore jobs (like attaching a fuel hose) are done by the local crew without boarding the plane or ship.
      There probably was a specific harbor and berth/jetty where they would be allowed to tie up, and that would be equipped with whatever is needed to offload and load with minimal contact. Maybe something like modern containerships: everything packed in standardized crates or containers, that can be manipulated by a crane-operator either from a shipside crane or one on shore, depositing the load in marked-off locations. From that point it can be taken on by the opposite crew, without further contact or communication being necessary.
      You’d need a harbor that can be entered without needing a pilot, just straightforward sailing instructions. I don’t think a pilot’s job could be done without direct contact and with nothing but stock phrases.

    • CJ

      Trade has been orchestrated by the paidhiin, to Port Jackson, and to Dur and some coastal towns. When airplanes started to make the trip, designated landings were at the Shejidan airport, but crews could go no further, and ditto in Port Jackson, same restriction.

  10. Rigeldeneb

    Hey, can we begin to discuss “Tracker” in detail now?

    • Neco-ji

      I was going to say, we seem to be suspiciously silent when it comes to discussing Tracker…

      That said, I’m definitely looking forward to where CJ takes things for Irene. She’s a smart kid; I’d like to see her be the next paidhi. To be Cajeiri’s paidhi.

  11. scenario_dave

    I would think that things have changed and Cajeiri will need more than one paidhi. At least one for the island, one for the ship and one for the station. There’s a lot more face to face contact between Humans and Atevi now.

    There are now four species involved now instead of two. He’ll probably need two more of different species. The Kyo are big on precedent. They’re probably going to want to exchange paidhis with the Humans and with the Atevi.

    • joekc6nlx

      Have I missed something? Atevi, human, kyo…….there are four parties, Mospheiran human, Ship/station human, kyo…..I doubt that station atevi are going to be considered a separate party, as well, since their man’chi will remain with the aijiinate in some manner.

      • ektus

        Atevi, Human, Kyo… and the yet unnamed people on the other side of Kyo space. But there might be more, if it turns out it’s impossible for humans from ship, station and island to speak with one voice

        • joekc6nlx

          IIRC, the unnamed people on the other side of kyo space don’t play nice…kind of like “Shoot first, sift through the bodies, and then ask questions”, if you take the kyo’s word for it…..there may be no negotiating with them……and maybe they’re really not that much of a factor to atevi/humans.

          • scenario_dave

            We don’t know what happened between the Kyo and the outsiders. As I understand it, the Kyo rely a lot on precedent. They also seemed to have combined into one government years ago. When it comes to government, they would probably use precedent and assume that they should be in charge. They could have easily stumbled into a war. The Humans and Atevi did and they have many years of experience dealing with outsiders, within their own species.

            I think that the Kyo got so badly burned by their contact with the outsiders that they decided that the precedent they set was a bad one. When they saw the Atevi and humans working together, they decided to see if they could use that relationship as a new precedent.

    • Tommie

      Oh my! Now Bren gets to set up a new guild. Oh, the paperwork!

  12. Neco-ji

    General question:

    Peacemaker mentions the hiring of Guild members (in the prologue I think, the excerpt from Wilson’s papers).

    Does a lord’s aishid get paid a salary? It’s never mentioned, but Banichi and Jago do purchase a “very florid shirt” for Algini in Defender as a sort of gag gift.

    Does Bren pay them, or do they fall under the “paid for by the atevi government” because Bren (used to) fall into that category? Or is it more complicated?

    • joekc6nlx

      OOH, good question!

      1) They’re paid by the Assassin’s Guild based on their relative rank within the Guild (plausible, not necessarily true), because only the Guild knows the true rank of their members.
      2) They’re paid by the atevi government through Tabini’s office, although that would exclude the Guild in the East and in the Marid, since they didn’t recognize Tabini’s Guild as having authority over their regions.
      3) They’re paid directly by their lord. I find this to be the most plausible, although I’d wonder if a lord is a penny-pincher, would the relatively low salary paid to the bodyguards be enough to overcome man’chi to that lord? I know man’chi is emotional, but man’chi also changes suddenly as we see in the machimi, and Algini’s man’chi has changed from wherever it was before to Tano, and Tano’s man’chi is to Bren. The salary would be set by the lord based on the perceived value of the bodyguard? Would there be a pay scale for junior security, as Tano and Algini are junior security to Banichi and Jago, or does the lord make the decision on how much to pay them? Could be tricky…….
      4) all expenses are paid by the lord to whom they declare man’chi. So, even if Banichi were to buy something for Bren as a gift, the money would come out of Bren’s account as a lord. The fact that Bren has a ton of money from the Mospheiran government for his salary probably doesn’t even enter into the equation, as I believe there was a reference to him not wanting to draw that salary, especially since he considered himself to be working no longer for the State Department.

    • CJ

      Once in a lord’s service on permanent assignment they’re pretty well paid by the lord—most anything they want, within the discipline of their guild. Their equipment generally comes from the Guild, at Guild expense, and the Guild makes money off of small private assignments and gets funds from the government for its work in security. The Guild, unlike Transportation, eg, pretty well gets what it wants, but its members almost never wear other than uniforms, and their room and board is supplied by their employer.

      Bren is, in a word, rich. He has more money than his lifestyle lets him spend, and most everything he ‘owns’ is on loan from the government in one sense or another: he’s never bought so much as a teaspoon—you saw Cajeiri pick out his own furniture. Most things are that way in the Bujavid and in estates. Everything is a work of art, there is very little throw-away and a whole lot of storage until some new occupant wants it. Presentations are made, likewise usually of artworks, and those also go into an estate’s storage over time. Flowers and food are popular gifts, however, and entirely ephemeral.

      • Neco-ji

        Does Bren’s aishid sometimes wear other than their uniforms, when they’re off duty? (Are they ever off duty long to want to wear other clothing? :P) Or is it really always the variations on a black theme that seems to attend their uniforms?

        How many different uniforms do they have? It’s been mentioned that they have various light to heavy duty jackets, “operational blacks”, “fatigues”, and a very nice black and silver knee length coat that Jago was wearing sometime in Inheritor. It sounds like a typical Guildsman’s closet can be a little crowded.

        Do they have to purchase their own uniforms (it was mentioned in Deceiver that they had to cut up one of Jago’s “very expensive jackets” to make the vest for Bren) or is that provided for them by the Guild as part of their gear?

        • tulrose

          I seem to remember that Tano was given an extremely loud shirt by Banichi and Jago as a joke because he only ever wore old uniform T’s.

          • Neco-ji

            That was Algini, but yeah.

            “Banichi and Jago turned up, at the distribution of gifts, both fresh from showers and ready for dinner- they came to present Algini their own gift, a very, very florid shirt, to laughter and applause from the servants, because Algini had a penchant for his old black uniform tees, in his rare moments off duty. Algini accepted it in good grace, shed his uniform jacket and put on the shirt over the black tee to general laughter.”

            Defender, paperback, page 95.

            It’s one of my favorite scenes in this book. 😀

      • Neco-ji

        Bren’s aishid must be pretty wealthy in their own right by now, wouldn’t they? They have about as much opportunity to get out and spend it as Bren does (well, if the books are any indicator of that sort of thing).

  13. Neco-ji

    Do atevi farm eggs? There is mention of “egg gathering”, but they seem to do A LOT with eggs: baking, pickled eggs, eggs for breakfast, etc, and I kinda find it hard to believe that you can just go out and gather eggs from a reserve somewhere and have enough to supply that habit for everyone- unless most of the eggs go toward the lordly houses? Thus leaving the “lower classes” to eat something else, like goda (the boiled grain dish Tano mentions in Precursor; it sounds like porridge? They put fruit jelly or fish sauce on it.)

    • Tommie

      I imagine that if one were to make conditions ideal for egg layers, and only take a certain percentage of the clutches, that would be proper. One might also sell the vast amounts of manure thus generated. The creatures, being encouraged rather than captive might also be hunted elsewhere seasonally.
      Chicken eggs, rinsed but not scrubbed and kept cool can last about three months. This allows us to eat eggs all through the moult, when chickens do not lay.

  14. Neco-ji

    Please pardon the barrage of questions; I’ve been thinking about these for a while.

    In the Conspirator/Deceiver/Betrayer trilogy, they start with them sending someone to the hospital for a broken arm (or something) but the nearest hospital was, apparently, in Separti township, further south. But by Betrayer, Najida estate seems to have its own well equipped clinic, what with nand’ Siegi taking Tano and Lucasi for x-rays, and him treating Vejico for a wound resulting in considerable blood loss.

    DOES Najida have a clinic, or did the wounded get packed up and hauled off to Separti? Because it sure didn’t feel like they were being transported for medical treatment.

    • joekc6nlx

      I can imagine that an estate would have a clinic, even if it’s for those little injuries incurred in the kitchen, or gardening, or getting a nasty splinter in one’s finger while building the new addition and garage.
      Then, considering that an estate “might” be under seige, such as with Tirnamardi by the Kadagiri, it would be difficult to get emergency medical care into the estate, especially if the estate is isolated and is surrounded by opposing forces. Doesn’t Ilisidi’s physician, Nand’Siegi travel with her, even if it’s not always mentioned? I would presume that Tataseigi also has his own personal physician, as many other lords would, as well.
      Now, does Bren have a personal physician? It seems to me that he does not, and relies on the services of other physicians, notably Siegi, when he’s been injured. Nand’Siegi seems to be conveniently at hand whenever something happens to Bren, though…..anticipation of services needed? 😉

      • Neco-ji

        Ages ago in the books I remember a vague reference that Bren might have had a physician in Shejidan. It was never mentioned again, and I cannot remember which book I saw it.

        And yes, it seems that Ilisidi takes her physician everywhere. He’s a handy fellow to have around.

        Also, humans and atevi must be put together pretty much the same way, as he didn’t seem to have an issue putting Toby to rights after he’d been shot. It seems that humans and atevi must share some medications as well, as various painkillers and anesthetics were used in those books for our favorite humans, prescribed by atevi doctors.

        • paul

          One should think effective repairs from peripheral projectile wounds would be relatively straightforward: remove the object, stop major bleeding, prevent sepsis, close the wound.

        • scenario_dave

          After the Bren’s poisoning incident, I would bet that Ilisidi made sure her doctor knew how to treat humans. Knowing her, she has a very good doctor.

          • Neco-ji

            That was also what made me wonder about it. Banichi had it together, giving Bren the injections and stuff, and putting his head under the water (what WAS the point of that exercise, btw?) But you’d expect him to know what to do, since he’s around Bren more.

            How did the doctor know how to treat him (the glass of milk, three times a day)? Presumably he hadn’t had to deal with humans before that time, unless he had contact with some other paidhi prior to Bren. Was he just sort of guessing his way through a treatment, thinking that, Well, Bren survived the first night, so maybe we CAN just wait for it to leave his system?

            If he’s atevi, with a naturally alkaloid tolerant metabolism, how would he know the symptoms to poisoning in a human? Unless atevi frequently poison themselves on alkaloids?

          • scenario_dave

            There’s probably a medical book or two on humans in Aveti made either before the war or afterward to assist the former Paidhi’s. Poisoning is a constant worry. You would figure that the physician assigned to the Paidhi would have known how to treat a known danger.

          • Tommie

            I should think that she saw to that before the incident.

      • chondrite

        An excellent point. Like other retainers, I expect that, depending on circumstance, an estate would have its own medical facilities, including trained staff. The Guild also receives medical training I’m sure; one cannot always count on a friendly doctor being available when on assignment and knowing at least some first aid is probably vital to the profession.

        This leads to an interesting question: Humans have the Hippocratic Oath, which can lead to doctors treating opponent forces on the field of battle, and ER physicians treat first, ask questions later. Atevi doctors must have a more difficult time of it; are they free agents, do they go where directed like the Guild, or do they develop man’chi, and would this cause problems with rendering aid where needed? Or some combination of the above?

        • paul

          One rather suspects atevi Lords have a practical perspective, including of one’s reputation. As we see in human hospitality in hostile environments, there are generally longterm mutual benefits to rendering aid when necessary. Or as we used to say, “back in the day”, “What goes around, comes around.”

      • Teasel

        One physician that seems to have faded out is Toby. When first identified in Foreigner Bren’s mother had “taken the community allotment he’d left when he won the paidhi’s place and … combined it with her savings from her teaching job, and lent his family-bound and utterly respectable brother the funds to start a medical practice on the north shore” [Foreigner p.123]
        As far as I remember there is no further mention of a career until Toby becomes a boater. Nor does he throw himself into any first aid role in any of the sticky situations he finds himself.

        • CJ

          The boat is the proceeds from whatever he had left after the marriage breakup. He doesn’t have a practice or a job, unless you count that he’s not too surreptitiously working for the government.

          • Neco-ji

            Is Toby paid by the government then? I’ve always wondered where he gets the income to just be a boater all the time.

    • scenario_dave

      They almost certainly have some kind of clinic. Hasn’t Bren been spending money in the district. Maybe he upgraded the clinic in the last few years.

  15. CJ

    The Physicians’ Guild has a code of ethics as do the Assassins. They’re non-combatants and will render aid except under active exchange of fire. If there’s a medic on the other side, he would treat under a cease-fire. The catch is—if an order has been given for assassination, outright, which for the atevi is a judicial process involving attempts at resolution short of that–ie, with due consideration, there is no ceasefire granted.

    • chondrite

      That makes sense; do the atevi have an equivalent of Red Cross/ Crescent, signalling noncombatants who may go in harm’s way?

      • joekc6nlx

        and for those atevi who are not lords, cannot afford their own personal physician, is there an equivalent of Blue Cross to cover the costs of their care?

        • tulrose

          I see a community centre providing such services. A bit like the minor emergency centres that we have around town with the ability to perform triage and support to a larger facility.

          • CJ

            And the Guilds and clans. There are very tiny clans, but these usually have a relationship to one of the larger ones, and it’s a case of looking out for their own. An ateva outside of all relationship to a lord or guild is not a mentally healthy ateva. Either he is an aiji with downward relationships and responsibilities, or he is not able to form them.

            This is one reason Ilisidi and Cajeiri’s parents were very anxious to get the lad into an environment where he would have atevi contacts and a response to his feelings. It’s another reason why Ilisidi declined to forbid the association with the children…it was, in her opinion, risky, but it was seeming to answer a need. The craziness in the year since, with Cajeiri trying to reintegrate with his family and showing signs of making healthy connections has still been a matter of letting the boy be close to those he wants to be close to. Ironically, because of the unsettled politics after the coup, it is politically dangerous to bring in children of some clans—a sensitive and touchy issue, as to who of rank HAS children of the right age, and of what district. If the aishidi’tat had remained stable, there might have been an opportunity to arrange something, but there has not been, and Tabini, realizing he had a narrow window left to establish a relationship with his son, has been very reluctant to allow Cajeiri to pursue his relationship with human children aloft. Once the boy seemed to stabilize, and in the approaching birth of a second child, which might provoke resentment—(not even mentioning the tension between Tabini and Damiri, with the problems in Damiri’s troubled clan and Tabini refusing to let Damiri take the lordship of that quarreling mess)—both elevating the boy to a much stronger political position AND allowing him his association with the children on the ship seemed a good way both to secure an heir brought up by Ilisidi as he (Tabini) was—and to keep that heir happy and focused on issues other than sibling rivalry…with a daughter Tabini is now determined will NOT become entangled in Damiri’s clan politics either. Tabini values Damiri for her good qualities, including resourcefulness, independent thinking, and stubborn loyalty to him—which occasionally conflicts with her stubborn loyalty to her birth clan— interspersed with her frustration with both. She is a force with her own agenda, but she was also the partner who endured outlawry with him, and they are a life partnership that keeps him grounded, never mind her relatives.

            Nothing is ever simple in that household.

  16. paul

    The Kyo remind me a bit of the Hulag.

    • Raesean

      Paul, who are the Hulag? I don’t remember that name. Is it a reference to another of CJ’s books or to something outside of her universes?

      • paul

        @Raesean: You’ve never read the Faded Sun trilogy? Oh, you should!

        • Raesean

          Ah, I had forgotten about that series which I read years and years ago.

    • Jcrow9

      Paul, I think you mean Regul, of which Hulagh were a doch, or clan.

    • Jcrow9

      Paul, I think you mean Regul, of which Hulagh was a doch, or clan.

  17. Jcrow9

    Oh bilge! :-/ Damn latency….

  18. Rigeldeneb

    Cajeiri’s attempts to bond with his mother is an intriguing glimpse into atevi family life. On page 200 in hardback Tracker (well, the book is not yet out in paperback), Tabini tells Cajeiri that “Man’chi goes both ways” and urges him to go carefully with Damiri. Mother and son seem to persistently misread one another. I liked that Damiri makes an effort–touching of her to visit her son during the thunderstorm in case it reminded him of falling bombs.

    Also, interesting that Tabini seems determined that mother and son will bond–I guess he wants peace in the family.

    Earlier books noted that Bren has never found out much about atevi parent-child relationships, because the atevi are close-mouthed about that part of their lives, so this glimpse into the dynamics of man’chi between parent and child is interesting.

    Of course, I have been muttering at the pages, “Just give each other a big hug, why don’tcha!”

    Maybe one day we will get more information about Banichi’s and Jago’s parent/child relationship?

  19. Teasel

    I find it interesting how cover artists have portrayed the atevi. We have print descriptions of their height, build, skin and eye colour, hair and hairstyles. There are general descriptions atevi features; and we can safely infer such things as number of digits because if atevi didn’t have the 4-fingers-and-thumb arrangement, humans would have made a big deal of it. However all cover artists have portrayed atevi as having pointed ears, and I can’t remember any textual reference to atevi ears except that their hearing is more acute than human hearing. Does anybody recall any mention of pointed ears or is this just some sort of cultural meme for “humanoid alien”?

    • chesty

      I remember when Jago stuck her tongue in Bren’s ear, and I think there may have been some mention of her ears at that time, but the details escape me.

  20. chesty

    If Cajeiri ever meets Toby’s kids and their friends, which it suddenly occurred to me is entirely probable, he could gain another pin in his map. A connection to Mosphieran kids might be politically valuable, the way things are going.

    • Xheralt

      Unless Toby’s ex (don’t remember her name) has filled her kid’s heads with all kinds of bile regarding Toby – a task made easier by Toby’s own absences and other behaviors. They could even be Heritage Youth Guard (or whatever the Party’s youth wing is called) now!

      • chesty

        That’s an interesting idea. I’m sure they won’t fool the young gentleman for long, though. He’s no fool, and he’s got some skills. I’m very curious how he’d manage the situation. Something to ponder while patiently waiting for the next book. Thank you. 🙂

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