Friday, July 20, 2007

ACACIA Review - Character Impressions

One device I see a lot in any sort of fiction is that when a character has a "gut feeling", often he or she is right. The gut feeling is rarely a red herring; instead it is a foreshadowing.

One thing I am finding about ACACIA, is that you should expect the unexpected, and just like in real life, gut feelings are often not to be trusted. Leeka, the down-to-earth, tough-as-nails general, was convinced that he found his reason for existing, and that his reason for existing was to bring word of an impending attack to his countrymen.

Another character, the preteen Princess Mena, had a gut feeling that she could trust a guardian that was sent to protect her.

Whose gut feeling do you think was accurate? You don't really expect me to say, do you?

I love being surprised. When I encountered a chapter featuring a new character named Spratling, I admit that I felt a bit impatient. Not another viewpoint character, I thought. Well, I turned out to be wrong. Spratling has another identity, one that I was familiar with and that I didn't expect at all. And so now I have a new favorite character.

I only have misgivings about one character. There are two female viewpoint characters in ACACIA, and I'm wondering if Durham means for his readers to dislike one of them. She is now a captive and seems to be falling in love with her captor. It reminds me of a similar situation in Guy Gavirel Kay's Tigana. So far, the character in ACACIA is remaining strong, but I dearly wish she would develop more of a backbone. At the very least, she could stop being so obedient to her captor. I would be elated if she managed to escape. However, I am going to reserve judgment until the end of the book, because she certainly has plenty of time to redeem herself.

I am hoping, now that I've reached the part where the four royal siblings are scattered about the globe, that the viewpoints focus more on them. So far, so good.

1 comment:

John Dent said...

Oh ho ho ho!
Spratling is indeed a great character, as is Leeka Alain. You can't even trust gut instincts at this stage, Tia.