Friday, September 28, 2007

Wind Follower - Something Totally Different

Not since I read Thief With No Shadow have I read a book with such a unique plot. I am about 1/5th of the way through WIND FOLLOWER and I have no idea where it is heading.

The story moves at a leisurely-yet-engaging pace through a hasty courtship and marriage. While fantasy is usually rife with romance, marriages usually take place at the end, if at all. This is one reason why this book is so different. I cannot recall reading a single other fantasy where a protagonist was actually married.

Another interesting and unique thing about this book is that while the wife was not willing to marry, she ends up loving her husband. Fiction often makes arranged marriages out to be living nightmares. However, my real-life experience in talking with people who come from arranged marriages is that they are generally as happy as anyone else. The reason can probably be found in WIND FOLLOWER, where the wife has apparently decided to love the husband. This is my own impression and may not have been in line with the author's intention.

"How easy it is to bend to the will of a husband one is willing to love! Yes, from that night, I began to love him, and the more I loved him the more unsettled I became."

It seemed like on that night, she decided to love her husband and be happy with him. It is not romantic in the traditional sense. There is a sex scene which is not very sexy, and I suspect that was intentional.

Shortly before their marriage, Loic has a vision where he is offered a sword from heaven. He is offered it three times before he finally accepts it. Loic has no idea what this vision means, but I suspect it heralds the destruction of his wealthy father's house. This is just a guess.

I made a discovery that I probably should have noticed before. This novel has a gazetteer! Yes, it has all the tribes, houses, clothing styles, places, customs, language and much more, going on for almost a dozen pages. In recent years, I had not seen gazetteers as often as I did in the 80s; are they making a comeback? If so, then this is a welcome development.

5 comments:

Carole said...

Hi there! Woman, I'm on pins and needles here!!!!! (hard being on these things for so long.)

Yep it has a glossary.

And definitely true about the DECISION to love Loic. I swear I wrote the book listening to lifetime TV, Christian missionary testimonies, and watching Tribal Odyssey and other anthropological stuff on Discovery channel. So folks in arranged marriages loving each other is part of my make-up and ended up in the book. Thanks for liking it....soo far. ::chuckle:: -C

Carole said...

PS: Forgot to add that the editor suggested the glossary. And I pretty much copied the pattern of the glossary from Quinn Yarbro's (A mortal Glamour) pattern.

Tia Nevitt said...

I hope I'm not torturing you!! I have been reading this more slowly than usual because it was a very busy week. Today I was on an Autism Walk and now my feet hurt so that's a great excuse to read.

I love your commentary as I go along!

Carole said...

Oh, an autism walk? Did you see my post on darkparables, my blog? My son was diagnosed as autistic 17 years ago and is non-verbal-- I'm praying for a miracle because with God all things are possible-- but the curious thing is that because of my son all my stories have at least one character who has an illness, a disability, or a challenge. I try to do that in every novel...as well as I try to do a pro-life statement in every novel or short story also. Amazing that all these stories don't get weighed down with all my "musts."

I don't know if you have a relative who struggles with autism or allergies but I appreciate your walk and am glad you were on the march.

Tia Nevitt said...

-Sigh- It seems that everyone knows someone with Autism these days. I have already encountered your disabled character and you portrayed her very well.