Kushiel’s Justice readalong: Week 7

Hi everyone! This week it’s chapters 47-56, though I admit, I wasn’t able to stop this week! I loved this week’s portion, but I don’t know why exactly. I mean, wandering around kinda hopelessly didn’t really work in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, but it worked here. Questions by Lynn.

1. Imriel seems to be having a lot of adventures by himself for the past few chapters. What do you make of his adventures and his character as the story progresses.

I feel like this answer is kind of tied in with my answer to the next, so I’ll answer them together.

Ok, so last week I made it known that I guess I kind of love Urist. Which I think is kind of strange because he’s not a character that we know a lot about emotionally. We know that he killed his brother, and that was a big reveal, and is protective over Dorelei (not just because it was his job), but we haven’t seen too many different sides of him. But he was an important character to drive Imriel. He got Imriel to Sidonie, so it helped him remember her and not obsess over vengeance. He admitted that he felt guilty about Dorelei’s death, which I think helped Imriel with his own feelings of guilt.

Anyway, so the shipwreck, this always puzzled me in the book. It’s this huge chunk where the plot doesn’t really move forward, and I always kind of wondered why it was there. It’s not really like we saw him learn a skill on the island that would be useful in finding Berlik. Other than Rus, of course. I think served to teach Imriel some Rus and to separate him from Urist in a non-dramatic way (like, without Carey killing him) so we can meet up with him again later. But I always feel like, even though it’s a good read, it’s such a detour from the main story. Maybe that’s the point.

But for some reason, I don’t really have this puzzlement with the imprisonment portion. I think there, Imriel learned compassion for Kebek (who is a minor character that I would like to know more about!). We also learned more about Vralian politics and history, which was interesting to me.

2. What do you make of Urist’s misfortune do you think he will play a further role in the story?

See above.


3. Berlik seems to be receiving a lot of help on his travels, he seems very sad and repentant – what do you make now of Imriel’s mission? Will he succeed or is he changing? And is this mission worth the price?

Ugh. Good questions. I’m not sure if I can answer. The book is titled Kushiel’s Justice, so I guess the question is how much justice considers repentance. If Berlik repents and atones, and Imriel spares him, will there still be justice for Dorelei? I think repentance can be considered in the administration of justice, but I don’t think it’s the whole thing. I’m not sure if this answers the questions. I guess just, Berlik’s feelings shouldn’t have a bearing on Imriel’s mission. At least, not at this point. If when he finds Berlik, Berlik is able to change his mind, my answer might change.

4. Joscelin seems to have become known as an ‘angel’ and Imriel as an ‘avenging angel’ – any thoughts?

This is just what D’Angelines need to feed their already massively inflated egos! 😉

The Vralians think Micah is doing Yeshua’s work with the help of Joscelin. Imriel thinks he is doing Kushiel’s. So I guess there’s some “truth” to it, if you’re religious.

5. The war that is looming – how do you see this affecting what is yet to come for Imriel?

At this point, I don’t know. I suppose travel through a country at war is more difficult, even if/after Imriel succeeds. We already saw him be mistaken for a spy. If Fedor and the Tartars win, then the allies Imriel has with Tadeuz and Micah will become liabilities.

6. What did you think of Imriel’s thoughts about the Gods and the fact that we sometimes change them by twisting the truth a little as time progresses?

I guess I kind of addressed that above, considering Joscelin and Imriel as kind of angels in that (it is believed) they are doing gods’ work. This has been a theme we’ve seen throughout this whole series–the Maghuin Dhonn’s story becoming one about feeding children to bears, Kazan’s story of an accident becoming one about how he killed his brother, Melisande becoming the Bella Donna and escaping so she can look for her son.

About emmawolf

I'm a freelance writer living in Baltimore with my husband, son, and two cats. I'm working on editing my first novel. I love reading, traveling, and the cello.
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2 Responses to Kushiel’s Justice readalong: Week 7

  1. @lynnsbooks says:

    I really enjoyed this week’s sections, the shipwreck, the jail – everything. It all kind of fell into place and I just found myself speeding through it and nodding along enjoying Imriel’s development.
    Lynn 😀

  2. Allie says:

    The shipwreck was kind of a major sidetrack, but I’m glad Urist wasn’t just killed off instead. I’ll add him to the list of minor characters I’d like to know more about.

    I get the feeling that this part is a lot about showing the struggle Imriel has to go through for his justice. He’s separated from his loved ones, from the governments of both countries, then from his men, and finally from Urist. Then he’s imprisoned, and finally sets out alone into the wild. Maybe this has to do with showing the cost of justice, as each of the events take more away from him?

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