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Linda Hilton

Reader, Writer, Merciless Reviewer and Incurable Romantic


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Currently reading

Inventing a Christian America: The Myth of the Religious Founding
Steven K. Green
Progress: 67/328 pages
Significant Others
Sandra Kitt
Progress: 34 %
Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right's Stealth Plan for America
Nancy MacLean
Progress: 134/574 pages
The Secular Scripture: A Study of the Structure of Romance
Northrop Frye
Progress: 43/200 pages
All the President's Men
Carl Bernstein, Bob Woodward
Progress: 73/383 pages
Women's Gothic and Romantic Fiction: A Reference Guide (American Popular Culture)
Kay Mussell
Progress: 17/157 pages
The Looking-Glass Portrait
Linda Hilton
Really Neat Rocks: A casual introduction to the rocks & gems of Arizona and the lapidary arts
Linda Hilton
Progress: 61/61 pages
Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith
Jon Krakauer
The House of the Spirits
Isabel Allende

Reading progress update: I've read 291 out of 383 pages.

The Summer Tree - Guy Gavriel Kay

I'm forcing myself to continue out of some demented sense of obligation, either to the book or the author or myself.


There's a new creature, the urgach, kind of like a gorilla only it has a sword.  My first thought was the Uruk-hai of Tolkien -- large, evil orcs.


There's another animal, a cerne. that we don't get a real description of other than it's 

proudly horned like the god for which it was named,

Kay, Guy Gavriel. The Summer Tree (Fionavar Tapestry Book 1) (p. 256). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition. 

So we're into serious Celtic mythology here with Cernunnos, the Horned God, I guess.



And later


Gereint rose in the night to address the tribe, his voice was the voice of power. He spoke for Ceinwen and Cernan, for the night wind and the dawn wind, all the unseen world.

Kay, Guy Gavriel. The Summer Tree (Fionavar Tapestry Book 1) (pp. 276-277). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

So, is Cernan the horned god, and is he only god of the dawn wind?  You see now why all of this is so confusing?  And every time this sort of thing happens, I'm pulled out of the story.  I get frustrated and don't even want to continue.


The worst of the frustration is that in some, albeit rare, instances, the confusion is soon cleared up, sort of.  But most of the time it's not.  Later on the same page


Cernan, thought Ivor, god of the wild things, of wood and plain, Lord of the eltor, brother and twin to Ceinwen of the Bow.

Kay, Guy Gavriel. The Summer Tree (Fionavar Tapestry Book 1) (p. 277). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

Cerridwen is another figure from Celtic (Welsh, precisely) mythology.  She has a monstrously ugly son, Morfan. Her husband is Tegid Foel -- and Tegid is another, though minor, character in the book.


And then another unidentified, undescribed creature.


With an effort, then, a very great effort, he stretched himself out, mind and soul, to the impossible creature that had come for him. It did not exist, this exquisite thing that stood gazing calmly back at him in the strangely hued night. It did not exist, but it would,

Kay, Guy Gavriel. The Summer Tree (Fionavar Tapestry Book 1) (p. 286). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

Is it a dragon?  A nazgul?  A pteranodon?  A flying monkey? The reader isn't allowed to know.  Nice description of the night, but the thing that appears?  Nope, not allowed.