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  #301  
Old 04-29-2013, 10:47 PM
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suttree suttree is offline
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Originally Posted by Garak View Post
And sometimes, Suttree, I choose not to reply to some points because if I were to do so, it would require me to point out just how bad your logic is and I would rather not provoke YOU.
Yet again ignoring the fact that it's not me. Numerous posters have called you out on it. Guess the above applies to all of them as well? The majority of posters except for you have faulty logic. Might be time for a bit of introspection.

You said specifically

Quote:
t's a lapse in basic logic especially if you consider that Rand could probably shield her and roast her in the time she needs to blink.
Yet now you claim you were aware of the details surrounding the net? Care to logically explain that one? In addition when her net also disrupts weaves care to explain how he will attack the foundation of the house? More details you have down?

Look your last post containing attacks on RJ's work within the series cements your Brandon fan credentials.
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Last edited by Chosen; 05-06-2013 at 03:30 AM. Reason: off-topic, personal insults
  #302  
Old 04-29-2013, 11:04 PM
Garak Garak is offline
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Yet again ignoring the fact that it's not me. Numerous posters have called you out on it. Guess the above applies to all of them as well? The majority of posters except for you have faulty logic. Might be time for a bit of introspection mate.
Yes, in some cases it does apply to them. Again, I'm not saying that this is the case every time - mostly, it's just not having enough time to reply to everyone - but there have been times when I've had a response in mind but did not share it because I could not think of way of doing so that wouldn't rub people the wrong way. Moreso than just stating that I didn't like some aspects of the series.

I lost patience with you in that last post because you seem to be hung up on some little detail -the fact that Cads has a paralis net - and it distracts you from the big picture - the fact that provoking a person on the edge of suicide is stupid and anyone with two brain cells knows that.

But you see, this post is becoming inflammatory. And I don't want that to happen. That's not the way to carry on a discussion. So sometimes, I forego replying because I would rather not accidentally insult anyone and by the time I've thought of a better way to express my points, the thread has moved on and I'm willing to just let the point stand.

Sometimes, I don't reply because the subject under discussion really is a matter of personal taste and there is nothing I can say to change that. I think the bragging contest is funny. Lots of other people think it's childish but humor is subjective and I can't really say anything further. I can't say "You're right, it really is childish" because I don't actually believe that. And I can't continue to assert that it's hilarious because if you don't find it funny, my words aren't going to convince you. So, I just let the point stand. I figure, I've said my piece and everyone else has said theirs; there's nothing left to say on the matter, so let's move on.
  #303  
Old 04-29-2013, 11:10 PM
Garak Garak is offline
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As I said in a previous post, I don't think Brandon is the best person to assess his own strengths and weaknesses. A lot of authors are overly critical of their own work.

Now, this point has been brought up several times and you're right that I have ignored it in subsequent posts. I've replied to it once and I can't really say anything more without repeating myself. I think Brandon's dialogue is excellent and Brandon thinks it could be better. Maybe it could be but I think he sells himself short in that department.

I do think his prose needs work and he seems to be aware of that but again, this is ground we've already covered and I thought it best not to rehash the same argument over and over.

Last edited by Chosen; 05-06-2013 at 03:29 AM. Reason: off-topic
  #304  
Old 04-29-2013, 11:26 PM
Garak Garak is offline
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Suttree, are your posts changing after I've replied to them?

Several times tonight, I could swear that I replied to a short post of yours only to refresh the page and see that it had grown. At first I thought I was imagining it but you have been editing them.

There's nothing wrong with adding more to the post after the fact but you'll have to forgive me if I don't see it when I make my reply.

@Terez

I was going to ignore your post because there's nothing I can say to it other than "No, I'm not here for a flame war; I just have different opinions."

I've gone out of my way to avoid insulting anyone and I've apologized for cases where something I said could be taken in the wrong light. Sometimes it's best to let certain points go. Sometimes when I don't reply to something it's because I figure that particular discussion is at an impasse.

But I'm getting the impression that if I don't say something to every post directed at me, people will think that I'm doing it on purpose as some kind of slight or that I just don't see their replies.

I saw your post. I ackowledge its existence. I don't agree with it but there's nothing more to say.
  #305  
Old 04-29-2013, 11:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Garak View Post
Suttree, are your posts changing after I've replied to them?

Several times tonight, I could swear that I replied to a short post of yours only to refresh the page and see that it had grown. At first I thought I was imagining it but you have been editing them.
A sentence here or there or spelling in a couple of them, not enough to account for what you ignore and no NOT after you respond. Look at the time stamp, in one case there is a 40 min or so difference between the edit and your post. Really grasping at straws and deflecting. For instance in the last post I added.
Quote:
In addition when her net also disrupts weaves care to explain how he will attack the foundation of the house? More details you have down eh?

Look your last post containing attacks on RJ's work with the series cements your Brandon fanboi credentials. The reason you are here is obvious. You're not fooling anyone at this point.
You ignored the quote about Cadsuane which clearly shows you weren't aware of the details(which wasn't changed in the slightest) despite claims to the contrary. Others have already addressed the rest of the scene.
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Last edited by suttree; 04-29-2013 at 11:43 PM.
  #306  
Old 04-29-2013, 11:44 PM
Garak Garak is offline
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Originally Posted by suttree View Post
A sentence here or there or spelling, not enough to account for what you ignore and no NOT after you respond. Really grasping at straws. For instance in the last post I added.


You ignored the quote about Cadsuane which clearly shows you weren't aware of the details despite claims to the contrary. Others have already addressed the rest of the scene.
Rand can't form weaves within a certain radius around Cadsuane. Does that radius extend to the foundation of the house? If so, how was he able to form the weaves that killed the mydraal who popped into the window (The Arrows of Fire.)

So, how is the radius issue relevant? If his target is outside radius, what does it matter? And to be clear, I hated PoD - CoT before Brandon was even a published author.

Edit:
I'm not saying that you're deliberately changing the posts to make me look bad. I don't think you'd do that. I'm saying that I was confused.
  #307  
Old 04-29-2013, 11:58 PM
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Rand can't form weaves within a certain radius around Cadsuane. Does that radius extend to the foundation of the house? If so, how was he able to form the weaves that killed the mydraal who popped into the window (The Arrows of Fire.)
She can decide when to activate it else how would anyone ever channel around her. Weaves will not form if she is using it and close. Regardless this is a small part of it.

I repeat the quote:

Quote:
It's a lapse in basic logic especially if you consider that Rand could probably shield her and roast her in the time she needs to blink.
and my response:

Quote:
Yet now you claim you were aware of the details surrounding the net? Care to "logically" explain that one?
You had the details wrong and it's not the first time in this thread as others have clearly shown. Even in the face of something like this you still try and claim it's not that you "didn't know the details". I mean seriously?
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  #308  
Old 04-30-2013, 12:15 AM
fionwe1987 fionwe1987 is offline
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No. It is proof that people can recognize similar themes in certain types of stories. That the lines between genres are not so blurry as to make them indistinguishable.
Its about themes now, is it? Make up your mind. Is it one note emotions these books apparently exclusively invoke? Or is it themes that are exclusive to certain genres? What is a theme that can only be examined in a particular genre?

And this point right here, where you ignored the point I made about books from seemingly different genres not being all that different... that's what a ton of us are referring to. You ignored it (though you quoted it).

Quote:
Most authors have some idea of what genre they're writing in. And essentially... Yes. People writing in the fantasy genre will follow the tropes of that genre.
They will follow them? What the hell is that supposed to mean? I can name any number of fantasy authors who won't follow any trope that you care to name.
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They will give those tropes their own unique spin. Things like medieval technology and social structure, hard magic and epic quests: those are tropes and when you use them, you get fantasy.
Medieval technology shows up in historical fiction too. Epic quests can be a part of any novel, not just fantasy.

The point I'm trying to get across is that the existence of certain differences between piles of books doesn't mean those differences matter in criticism of those books.

Let me illustrate. The Wheel of Time novels are the only set of books where "quality of One Power battles" is a possible contributor to the reception of the novel. But would you agree that since this is a differentiating factor of these books alone, they deserve some kind of special treatment in literary criticism? Apart from questions of prose, characterization, plot, etc. must WoT be evaluated in terms of OP fights, which are distinct from Allomancy fights, which are distinct from magical fights in Harry Potter? Or would you say that despite the unique contexts of these books making for different specifics for such fights, their overall impacts are similar, and thus don't result in series-specific critiques of these books?

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Those are not the only way to get fantasy. For instance, if we switch to modern technology, we get urban fantasy.
How do you do this? How are you able to make such absurd claims? Let's imagine a book set in the Age of Legens. We have futuristic tech, but powered by the One Power. Does the series jump from Fantasy to Science Fiction now? Let's say we jump back to a time when One Power tech was only comparable to modern real world tech. Is this now an urban fantasy?

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But the two are close enough that the same standards would apply. However, if we throw quests and magic out the window and replace those tropes with a story centred around a budding relationship, we get romance. Or maybe we could combine the two and get fantasy romance. In that case we would use both the romance novel standards and the fantasy novel standards. The two can be combined.
They are almost always combined. Comb through any WoT messageboard and you'll find several threads deploring the poor romances in WoT. Since WoT isn't categorized by anyone as "fantasy romance", does the series get a free pass for having very few well developed romantic relationships?

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Listen to your heart (when he's calling for you.)
Spare us the homilies. Enduring the rest of your arguments is bad enough.
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My point about bookstores was not meant to be that bookstore definitions of genre should be taken as absolutes but rather to illustrate that people can and do recognize differences between genres.
Yes, there is some blurring.
And my point is that there is no factual basis for such differentiatiation and that is evidenced by books being shelved differently in different stores.
Yes, there is some blurring.

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That's a good point. And you might notice that I added "Good romance" to my analysis of Alloy of Law. Why? Because Brandon attempted (and succeeded imo) to tell a love story. If there had been no love story, that standard would have been irrelevant.
Ignoring the taste of puke at not rebutting a statement that Alloy had good romance...

What? So by merely having a romance, a novel is a romance novel now? But I thought you had to feel "love" for something to be a romance novel? And since almost every fantasy since Lord of the Rings has had a romance in it (good or bad), why is there a separate genre for "fantasy romance" and "fantasy"? Aren't they the same, by your definition?

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No.
Well, I'm floored. What a stinging reply. I've certainly learned my place...

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Straw man.
That has nothing to do with my point.
Straw-man:

3)a fabricated or conveniently weak or innocuous person, object, matter, etc., used as a seeming adversary or argument:

Unfortunately for you, the fact that bookstores put the newest books up front wasn't fabricated by me. Nor do I have the power to make them do so for the convenience of my argument. It was a preexisting fact. I pointed out to you that such a system exists. Don't chicken out of accounting for it.

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Well, perhaps you might want to argue with the things I've actually said. George R R Martin set out to tell a story that includes fantasy elements (a complex world with unique magic and culture).
A complex world with unique magic and culture? I recently read a book set in ancient India, replete with all sorts of unique culture and magic. Complex, too. I suppose I should credit the author with a work of fantasy, and dismiss the rather large list of historical sources he cites as nothing more than convenient D&D imaginings?

And there isn't anything particularly unique about either the magic or culture in Westeros. Or in any number of novels that get placed in the fantasy section of bookstores. They were miscategorized?

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If an author includes magic, then we can judge how effectively he writes about magic.
And if an author includes a talking gorilla, we can judge how effectively he writes about talking gorillas. Substitute "talking gorilla" and "magic" with any old thing. These things form part of the setting. And as such, setting is a criterion on which you can judge all books.

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How nuanced his ideas are and how well he articulates them. But we certainly wouldn't fault Pride and Prejudice for not having magic in it.
No, we wouldn't, because its setting is different. See?
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Criticisms about the nuance and complexity of magic do not apply to that book.
But the nuance and complexity of Austen's description of the social politics and etiquette does apply, and like the magic in aSoIaF, is very much part of the setting.
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You might say that we can develop standards on a book by book basis - and I know that will make you pull your hair out - but books in the same genre will generally employ the same storytelling devices and thus we will hold them to similar standards.
No! Stop shifting goalposts. Is a genre unique because of the one-note emotion it evokes, or is it unique themes, or unique tropes, or unique storytelling devices. None of these is unique to any one genre. There is no storytelling device in Susanna Clarke's work that makes it distinctly non-fantasy. Yet it does get shelved that way many times.

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Let me clarify. The prose can be measured on the same scale but the stories themselves cannot. .
Can the plotting? The characterization? The setting? Then what exactly is left?

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Assuming that we're not talking about the Dresden Files? Depth of the magic system (which would fall under world-building). If it's just a straight detective story with no fantasy elements, then we're not going to judge how well the author pulled off fantasy elements that he didn't use.
But we are going to judge how he describes detective work, the tools of the trade, the pitfalls, etc. Magic and sleuthing are not the same thing, but they serve the same function in the story. They're disparate in form, but not function.

And as is always the case with such things, it isn't the facts of a magic system or whatever that alter the quality of the work. Its the presentation of those things. Does the author use info-dumps, or is he clever at lacing the story with important facts so the reader learns organically? Is there internal logic to the way in which magic/sleuthing contributes to the plot climax, or does the author resort to last minute ass pulls?

These, and many other questions can be asked of both fantasy and mystery (or any other kind of) novels. Its why a work like Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell get legitimately compared to Jane Austen's work, despite the rather staggering amount of difference in their plots and aspects of their setting.

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You don't fault a book for its genre.
Precisely. You ignore the genre, and criticize a book based on objective criteria you use for all books.
  #309  
Old 04-30-2013, 12:17 AM
fionwe1987 fionwe1987 is offline
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It is a lapse in logic. It's a rather terrible lapse in logic for several reasons. First, if you believe that someone is contemplating suicide, the very last thing you want to do is provoke them. If someone is standing on a high ledge and it looks like maybe he's thinking about jumping, the very last thing you want to do is provoke him by threatening his girlfriend. Because maybe, just maybe, he'll freak out and fall off the ledge by accident.
Except Cadsuane didn't threaten Min. She created a circumstance where Rand would be reminded of his concern for Min. She clearly stated:

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I know that he bonded you, and you know I know.
She got the exact details wrong, but the important point was to mention the bond, and the cost to Min if the bond were to be broken...

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Logain said that Rand was holding as much of the Power as he could. So, from Cadsuane's perspective, how does she know that pissing him off won't cause him to draw just a little bit more, which could leave him burned out or dead? Given what we saw in Eye of the World, it might kill everyone else in the surrounding area as well.
But she didn't piss him off. She irritated him. There's a difference between those two things.

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Second because the Paralis Net won't help. The fact that Cadsuane can block weaves - even within a certain radius - is irrelevant to this discussion.
Not the way you led it.
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Can her paralis net prevent him from drawing enough of the Power to burn himself out? No? Then it's not really much help is it?
It is of help to the extent that it can prevent him from shielding/harming her, which was the objection you raised. Stop trying to imply that anyone said the net served a greater role than that.
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And I maintain that even if Rand could not channel at anything in the room, he could still attack the foundations of the house.
He would need to weave something to do that. And Cadsuane has a ter'angreal that can disrupt weaves others are making. It worked on Semirhage, who was considerably farther from Cadsuane than Rand.

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We just saw him slaughtering trollocs by the thousands not five minutes before this scene and the explosions he made were large enough to rattle the house to its foundations. So what's to stop him from setting off a Blossom of Fire on the lawn, outside the range of Cadsuane's ter'angreal?
The fact that the weave comes from him, which means it is within range of her weave-breaker?

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Common sense would dictate that Cadsuane should be trying to calm him down but instead, she antagonizes him.
Calm him down how? She knows for a fact that it isn't exactly Rand who is threatening suicide. She knows about the voices, about how they instruct male channelers. Trying to raise Rand's defensive nature regarding Min serves the following purpose: it forces Rand to focus on something that is inarguably a part of himself. Which makes it easier for him to ignore the thing that's trying to kill him: the voice.

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That is not subtlety; that is stupidity.
Its called knowing your target. Cadsuane being solicitous and kind is going to raise Rand's suspicions, not lull him into not committing suicide.
  #310  
Old 04-30-2013, 12:23 AM
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Rand can't form weaves within a certain radius around Cadsuane. Does that radius extend to the foundation of the house? If so, how was he able to form the weaves that killed the mydraal who popped into the window (The Arrows of Fire.)

So, how is the radius issue relevant? If his target is outside radius, what does it matter? And to be clear, I hated PoD - CoT before Brandon was even a published author.
Gods man, don't compound it. You claim you know all about the Paralis Net, yet reveal again that you don't:

Quote:
"No," Cadsuane replied grimly. "But I can do something about it. Once we're closer." Her golden hair ornaments swayed as she tossed her cloak back as though unmasking a sword.
"Stay behind me," he told Min, and to his relief, she nodded. Her face wore a small frown, and the bond carried worry. Not fear, though. She knew he would protect her.
Leaving the horses standing, he started toward the sul'dam and damane with Cadsuane and Nynaeve a little distance to either side of him. Logain, hand resting on his sword hilt as if that were his real weapon, strode along on the other side of Cadsuane, Narishma and Sandomere beyond Nynaeve. The small dark woman began walking toward them slowly, holding her pleated skirts up off the damp ground.
Abruptly, no more than ten paces away, she . . . flickered. For an instant, she was taller than most men. Garbed all in black, surprise on her face, and though she still wore the veil, her head was covered with short-cut wavy black hair. Only an instant before the small woman returned, her step faltering as she let her white skirts fall, but another flicker, and the tall dark woman stood there, her face twisted in fury behind the veil. He recognized that face, though he had never seen it before. Lews Therin had, and that was enough.
"Semirhage." he said in shock before he could stop the word, and suddenly everything seemed to happen at once.
Cadsuane is able to direct the effects of her ter'angreal, which specifically breaks particular weaves. It is distinct from the one that prevents direct weaves from touching her. Got it?
  #311  
Old 04-30-2013, 02:48 AM
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You may remember that it was Cadsuane who warned Rand about the voices in his head:



I think the argument SamJ is making is that Cadsuane was probably thinking that Rand holding enough saidin to kill himself is part of the voice-induced madness. She deliberately threatens Min to make Rand want to defend her, which makes it easier for him to decide not to kill himself. Remember that LTT wasn't really a separate person, but a part of Rand himself.
Late reply, but I'm just up and about this side of the ocean. Yes, this, but even more basically she is reminding him of the bond and that he would kill Min if he kills himself. I can see why others read it differently, but one of the things I like about RJ's use of POV is that it's so strict. It's up to us to interpret the behaviour of others - we are not told or spoon fed.
  #312  
Old 04-30-2013, 03:09 AM
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It's up to us to interpret the behaviour of others - we are not told or spoon fed.
thats one of several things I dislike about Sanderson as he tends to do the exact opposite.
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  #313  
Old 04-30-2013, 09:44 AM
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thats one of several things I dislike about Sanderson as he tends to do the exact opposite.
Yes - with RJ (to an extent) you get out what you put in.

I don't tend to sympathise with the 'things that are hard to read must be great' school of thought because, for example, there are books that felt easily devoured (Mantel's Wolf Hall, or Eco's Name of the Rose) that I find amazing and that are generally agreed to be great literature. However, I do find it hard to think of anything that doesn't leave the reader space as being really good. It's like the Sookie Stackhouse books, they are fun and readable, but there is nothing else there but what the story is telling us. I would put Brandon on a level with Charlaine Harris normally, with it clear he's growing above that level with time. RJ wasn't always successful but his work offers much more scope. It's not a fair comparison within WOT, but RJ vs BS is like the difference between a cathedral and a shopping mall to me. One I can read to admire, one I go to get through. I understand that others don't feel that way though.
  #314  
Old 04-30-2013, 05:35 PM
Garak Garak is offline
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You ignored the quote about Cadsuane which clearly shows you weren't aware of the details(which wasn't changed in the slightest) despite claims to the contrary. Others have already addressed the rest of the scene.
Okay, I wanted to get some rest and cool off before I posted anything further. I meant it when I said that I don't want a flame war and if that's what this degenerates into, I will leave.

One post at a time. So, this is my response to Suttree.

I can see how I've been unclear so, let me clarify. When I said that Rand could shield Cadsuane, I had forgotten about the Net. Then you reminded me.

When I said that I was aware of the details surrounding the Net, I meant that I recall the quote about how she got the Net in the first place. Specifically, I was replying to this:

Quote:
You said her actions were idiotic and there was a lapse in logic. This is false as not only does the net stop direct weaves it also disrupts flows within a certain radius. Her not be intimidated by male channelers for that very reason was driven home from the very first time we meet her. She goes on later to talk about how different her life would have been with out it.
Once you reminded me about the Net, I recalled the quote about how she got it. That's what I meant by “aware of the details.” So, yes, you are correct that I had forgotten about the Net. The point that I was trying to make is that it does not matter. The Paralis Net is not relevant to the issue of why Cadsuane is a fool for provoking Rand.

My comment about shielding her and burning her to cinders was an off-hand remark along the lines of “Do you really want to provoke a guy who can level buildings with a wave of his hand and who might just be a little unstable?” But that is not the crux of the argument.

Provoking a man on the verge of suicide is stupid for two reasons. The first is that he might lash out and hurt someone else. But the second is that he might just go through with it and kill himself. You seem to have missed the part where I pointed out that Cadsuane's Net could not have stopped Rand from pulling in more of the One Power than he can handle. Provoking a man on a ledge is a good way to make him jump.

However, even if this scene had taken place in Far Madding with Rand cut off from the One Power and trapped in a straight-jacket to boot, it would have still been stupid. Even if there was no conceivable way that he could himself or others, provoking him is still stupid. Cadsuane's stated goal is to get Rand past his paranoia and mistrust, to make him show proper respect to his companions and to help him get in touch with his emotions. And yet she acts in a way that is guaranteed to put him on the defensive.

Provoking Rand can only increase his paranoia and mistrust of Aes Sedai and Cadsuane ought to know this. And the novels do support his point because when Tam so much as mentions Cadsuane's name, Rand goes ballistic. When it came to achieving her goal of improving Rand's mental state, Cadsuane failed miserably. And for reasons that ought to have been obvious to her.

That is the crux of the argument.

Cadsuane did something stupid and the Paralis Net doesn't make it any less stupid.

You are correct that I had forgotten about the existence of the Net but that doesn't change anything. For a while there, I was baffled as to why you kept bringing up the point; I get the impression that you think being wrong about this minute detail makes my entire argument invalid. It doesn't. The reasons to not provoke someone on the edge of suicide go well above and beyond what he might do with the One Power.

Cadsuane failed in her task and for a very simple reason: her only concern was getting the Dragon to the Last Battle. She didn't care two figs about Rand as a person. The notion of befriending him would never occur to her because Cadsuane only thinks about the world in terms of how to dominate it. Even her moments of kindness are really just tools to serve her own ends.

Such as this:

Quote:
Patience was not one of her strongest traits but sometimes it was required with Samistu. The Yellow was observant and intelligent and strong-willed most of the time, not to mention the best alive at Healing – at least until the appearance of Damer Flinn – but she could suffer the most astonishing collapses in confidence. The stick never worked with Samistu, but pats on the back did and it was ridiculous not to use what worked.
No empathy. No concern. She makes it quite clear that her motivation for boosting the other woman's confidence is to get Samistu out of her hair and back to Cairhien. Suttree, you brought this up to me a few weeks ago and I didn't reply to it then because we were discussing sexism in WoT and I didn't want to go off topic with a Cadsuane character study. But here's what I would have said.

You consider this evidence of Cadsuane's subtlety. I consider it to be evidence of the fact that Cadsuane sees the world as a chess board and the people in it as her pawns. In the real world, we call people like that sociopaths. People who think like this are limited in their perceptions. They cannot solve problems that require them to actually care about others and that is why Cadsuane failed with Rand.

And I was mistaken when I said that RJ did a lousy job with Cadsuane. I take that back. When I listen to people on Theoryland talking about how subtle and clever Cads is, I picture RJ sitting down to write a clever, well-thought-out character and coming up with a thug. But it's quite clear to me now that RJ intended to create a thug. Cadsuane was meant to be the thing that pushes Rand over the edge. And RJ pulled that off quite well.

So, he deserves some props for that.

Again, having Cadsuane be the relentless harridan that she is is not a criticism of the story. These kinds of characters need to exist as foils to the main cast.
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Old 04-30-2013, 05:49 PM
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To Fionwe.

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She got the exact details wrong, but the important point was to mention the bond, and the cost to Min if the bond were to be broken.
Interesting point. Are you saying that Lews Therin released the Power because of Rand's love for Min?

You might have something here. However, I think that if this were her point, she would have said something like “Careful, Rand. Imagine what happens to the girl if you hurt yourself.” We didn't get her POV at the time but her actions seem more concerned with dominating the situation.

Your interpretation has some merit, however.

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But she didn't piss him off. She irritated him. There's a difference between those two things.
My point is that Cadsuane should have been delicate with him and instead she used a bludgeon. “Don't toy with me girl, you know the cost of that.” “Well, well, the boy shows some teeth. Just don't show too many.”

If we accept that Cadsuane was genuinely concerned that Rand might be poised to kill himself, her usual brand contempt mixed with derision would not have been appropriate. She should have been trying to convince him of why he might want to live. Again, you may have something above.

I discussed the Paralis Net in my response to Suttree, so I will direct you to that rather than repeat myself.

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Calm him down how? She knows for a fact that it isn't exactly Rand who is threatening suicide. She knows about the voices, about how they instruct male channelers. Trying to raise Rand's defensive nature regarding Min serves the following purpose: it forces Rand to focus on something that is inarguably a part of himself. Which makes it easier for him to ignore the thing that's trying to kill him: the voice.
I don't think we can attest to what Cadsuane knows at this point. But calming him down would have been saying things like “Rand, think clearly. If you get hurt, Min will suffer for it.” In a case like this, direct is better than implied. Even if we grant that the implication was intentional.
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Old 04-30-2013, 06:04 PM
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Actually itr goes farther than just "forgetting about the net". Your subsequent answers showed clearly you were not aware of how it functioned either. Don't let that get in the way of your spin though.

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Originally Posted by Garak View Post
Cadsuane failed in her task and for a very simple reason: her only concern was getting the Dragon to the Last Battle. She didn't care two figs about Rand as a person.
Failed in her task?

ToM
Quote:
"I was broken," Rand said, hands behind his back. "And then, remarkably, I was reforged. I think he almost had me, Egwene. It was Cadsuane who set me to fixing it...
Yes it took a lucky break at the end but that doesn't change the fact she was spot on in her analysis of Rand's character and how he needed to be approached. She had his back harder than just about anyone in the series and saved his life multiple times over. She swore to do what was best for him, not herself or the WT.

WH
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She had promised the boy that whatever she did would be for his good, not the good of the Tower or anyone else's...
Far from being just a bully we see her use a variety of tactics with different people and treat everyone almost unfailingly based on their actions. A defining aspect of her character is trying to better those around her, precisely because she does care, hardly the actions of a pyschopath . As RJ said she is "remarkably adaptable" and you seem to have missed most of the subtleties of of her character. Here is a good breakdown if you are interested.

http://13depository.blogspot.com/201...t-7-about.html
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Last edited by suttree; 04-30-2013 at 06:26 PM.
  #317  
Old 04-30-2013, 06:13 PM
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I don't think we can attest to what Cadsuane knows at this point. But calming him down would have been saying things like “Rand, think clearly. If you get hurt, Min will suffer for it.” In a case like this, direct is better than implied. Even if we grant that the implication was intentional.
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The woman looked at the battered tea things as if she had all the time in the world. "Now you know," she said at last, calm as ever, "that I know your future, and your present. The Light’s mercy fades to nothing for a man who can channel. Some see that and believe the Light denies those men. I do not. Have you begun to hear voices, yet?"
She knows exactly what is going on as of KoD. Oh and btw if you think she was just trying to get Samitsu out of her hair I suggest yet again you go back and read the whole section and put it in context.
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  #318  
Old 04-30-2013, 06:29 PM
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Its about themes now, is it? Make up your mind. Is it one note emotions these books apparently exclusively invoke? Or is it themes that are exclusive to certain genres? What is a theme that can only be examined in a particular genre?

And this point right here, where you ignored the point I made about books from seemingly different genres not being all that different... that's what a ton of us are referring to. You ignored it (though you quoted it).
I don't know if I'm just not expressing myself clearly enough or if it's something else. So, let's try again. Books in any genre do not evoke one single emotion. They evoke many. But they are written with certain goals in mind.

Epic fantasy is supposed to draw you into a strange world and get you invested in an adventure, horror is supposed to leave you scared and uneasy, romance is supposed to get you interested in a relationship. That does not mean that there is no bleed-over between these and the many other genres. But you seem to be saying that genres don't exist. Different books have different goals and use different storytelling methods to achieve them. Judging the effectiveness of those storytelling methods requires that we understand what the book is trying to do.

For instance, if it's a book full of thrills and suspense and nothing dangerous happens to the characters, then the book has failed to do its job. However, romance books don't necessarily need to put their main characters into situations involving danger and suspense. That doesn't mean they can't – as you said, fear often furthers a love story – but it is not the backbone of the story

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They will follow them? What the hell is that supposed to mean? I can name any number of fantasy authors who won't follow any trope that you care to name
Everything an author writes is a trope in some for or another. Sometimes it's a subverted trope or a trope that has been turned on its head. For instance Game of Thrones, the first book in the series is structured to make it look like the author is setting us up for the classic Hero Trope. The story slowly builds Ned Stark as your typical fantasy main character.

Then it kills him.

This is called subverting the trope.

Quote:
Medieval technology shows up in historical fiction too. Epic quests can be a part of any novel, not just fantasy.

The point I'm trying to get across is that the existence of certain differences between piles of books doesn't mean those differences matter in criticism of those books.

Let me illustrate. The Wheel of Time novels are the only set of books where "quality of One Power battles" is a possible contributor to the reception of the novel. But would you agree that since this is a differentiating factor of these books alone, they deserve some kind of special treatment in literary criticism? Apart from questions of prose, characterization, plot, etc. must WoT be evaluated in terms of OP fights, which are distinct from Allomancy fights, which are distinct from magical fights in Harry Potter? Or would you say that despite the unique contexts of these books making for different specifics for such fights, their overall impacts are similar, and thus don't result in series-specific critiques of these books?
Yes, the quality of the One Power fights is a relevant issue to judging the quality of WoT. This is because WoT is set up to be a story that relies – at least to some degree – on action. It's the story of good versus evil an that will mean direct confrontation. Since that confrontation will include the One Power, the quality of those battles matters.

This falls under the “Good Action” standard.

Quote:
How do you do this? How are you able to make such absurd claims? Let's imagine a book set in the Age of Legens. We have futuristic tech, but powered by the One Power. Does the series jump from Fantasy to Science Fiction now? Let's say we jump back to a time when One Power tech was only comparable to modern real world tech. Is this now an urban fantasy?
No the Age of Legends book is still Fantasy because magic is the driving force.

Regarding the modern-day tech, that could be urban fantasy but it would depend on how deeply the society resembled modern, twenty-first century society.

None of these distinctions would have a very big effect on the standards we use.

Quote:
They are almost always combined. Comb through any WoT messageboard and you'll find several threads deploring the poor romances in WoT. Since WoT isn't categorized by anyone as "fantasy romance", does the series get a free pass for having very few well developed romantic relationships?
No, it does not.

Please note that I included Good Romance as a standard for Alloy of Law. If a story has romance in it, then we can judge how effectively it portrays that romance. If the story has nothing to do with romance, then that would be an irrelevant standard.

Please recall that I did say that some standards have to be decided on a book by book basis and that genres only provide a general picture of what those standards would look like. (Most things in the fantasy genre will have world-building as a relevant standard. Not necessarily everything in the fantasy genre)

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Spare us the homilies.
That was a joke.

“Listen to your heart, when he's calling to you.” That's a song by Roxette. My point in making the joke is that pinning down a book's genre with laser-like accuracy is not necessary.

If a book includes fantasy elements we can judge how well it portrays them. That's my point. Not all books include fantasy elements and that is why it is not a universal standard. All books – or almost all – include characters.



Quote:
Ignoring the taste of puke at not rebutting a statement that Alloy had good romance...

What? So by merely having a romance, a novel is a romance novel now? But I thought you had to feel "love" for something to be a romance novel? And since almost every fantasy since Lord of the Rings has had a romance in it (good or bad), why is there a separate genre for "fantasy romance" and "fantasy"? Aren't they the same, by your definition?
If a story includes romance, we can judge how well it portrays that romance. The books in the romance genre will include romance so “Good romance” is a standard that applies to that genre. Not all books in the fantasy genre include romance. If they don't that standard is not applicable. You can have good fantasy without romance. BUT if it includes romance then the quality of the romance affects the quality of the overall story.

Quote:
Straw-man:

3)a fabricated or conveniently weak or innocuous person, object, matter, etc., used as a seeming adversary or argument:

Unfortunately for you, the fact that bookstores put the newest books up front wasn't fabricated by me. Nor do I have the power to make them do so for the convenience of my argument. It was a preexisting fact. I pointed out to you that such a system exists. Don't chicken out of accounting for it.
Your argument is a straw-man because I am not saying that genres are defined strictly by the ways that books are organized in a book store. I have never said that. I have said the opposite of that several times now.

Originally you asked me what separates books set in a town in our world from books set in their own created world and I took this to mean that according to you, genres are indistinguishable. They are not. The fact that we can organize books into genres tells us so.

But we could also reorganize genres. For instance, we could make a genre called “action” that contains all the books that include action whether they be set in fantasy worlds, modern-day USA or the distant future. However the standard that all these books would have in common is how effectively they use action. However the books that don't include fantasy/sci-fi elements would not be judged on their world-building.

Genres provide a guideline for what standards apply but there is some variance. Guideline, Fionwe. Not absolute.

Quote:
But we are going to judge how he describes detective work, the tools of the trade, the pitfalls, etc. Magic and sleuthing are not the same thing, but they serve the same function in the story. They're disparate in form, but not function.
Yes but while a detective story and a story of an epic quest will be similar in the sense that they both involve a main character trying to complete some task, the nature of the task is different enough that the writer must use different tools (different tropes) to show it. Good Action would probably apply to both.




Quote:
And as is always the case with such things, it isn't the facts of a magic system or whatever that alter the quality of the work. Its the presentation of those things. Does the author use info-dumps, or is he clever at lacing the story with important facts so the reader learns organically? Is there internal logic to the way in which magic/sleuthing contributes to the plot climax, or does the author resort to last minute ass pulls?
All true.

Quote:
Precisely. You ignore the genre, and criticize a book based on objective criteria you use for all books.
But those criteria will change depending on the type of story and genres are examples of different types of stories. Some things will be common to all stories but some are specific to certain types of stories.
  #319  
Old 04-30-2013, 06:29 PM
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I don't tend to sympathise with the 'things that are hard to read must be great' school of thought because, for example, there are books that felt easily devoured (Mantel's Wolf Hall, or Eco's Name of the Rose) that I find amazing and that are generally agreed to be great literature.
Lord, this made me laugh out loud. If you asked me to pick two books which I am told are "great" literature, and which I found to be almost brutally difficult to get through (for whatever reason), these two would be at the top of my list. Goes to show that appreciation really is subjective, no? Easily devoured...ROFMAO.
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  #320  
Old 04-30-2013, 06:34 PM
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She knows exactly what is going on as of KoD. Oh and btw if you think she was just trying to get Samitsu out of her hair I suggest yet again you go back and read the whole section and put it in context.
The fact that she knows men who channel hear voices does not mean she knows that Rand is hearing one at that particular moment.
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