Author Topic: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11  (Read 6485 times)  

Offline Archer

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Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
« on: March 26, 2010, 02:17:24 pm »
On April 1st, we'll begin our Alterran adventure. I will divide the book into several parts (based on where the plot naturally breaks), and work out a list of questions to stimulate conversation.

The questions are just suggestions...you can ask questions of your own at any time. You can embrace my questions or ignore them! This is YOUR Klub.

OKAY, Here goes:

Part one: Introducing the World and the Characters! Chapters 1-11

CHAPTER ONE:
1. What is your initial impression of Gaelen and Nelwyn? What differences do you see between them?
2. We really haven't 'met' Gorgon yet, but what is your initial impression of him? What sort of creature do you visualize in chapter one?

CHAPTER TWO-THREE:
1. Do you believe that Gaelen really had anything to do with saving Orogond's life? Do you believe he would have survived without her?
2. You have now 'met' the four main protagonist characters. At this point, what four adjectives would you use to best describe each one?
Gaelen
Orogond
Nelwyn
Galador

CHAPTER FOUR-FIVE:
1. Okay, so NOW we've met Gorgon. What is your impression of him now? What questions do you have about him?
2. What do you think of the Elvish italics? Does it bother you?
3. It is rare that anyone sways Gaelen's course, yet Orogond manages to strike a 'bargain' with her. Galador could never have accomplished this. What qualities does Orogond have that allow him to persuade Gaelen?

CHAPTER SIX:
1. What is the first sign that Galador might actually have a sense of humor?
2. Ulfar, though disgusting, might be of some economic use. Can you think of products that might be sold by 'Ulfar Unlimited'?

CHAPTER SEVEN-EIGHT:
1. Here we see the goings-on in the Greatwood. What is your impression of Llewellys' attachment to Gaelen? Do you see him as a future threat or as a future friend to Orogond?
2. Why do the Elves not approve of romantic attachments between themselves and mortal men?
3. Ri-Aruin obviously does not approve of Llewellys' attachment to Gaelen. Why not, do you think?
4. Gaelen's attitude toward her hair is obviously very different from Galador's. What does it say about each of them?

CHAPTER NINE:
1. If you were lost in a mountain blizzard, which of the characters would you prefer to have as a companion?
2. Do you identify with any of the characters you've met so far? If so, in what way?
3. We've seen a few small examples of 'magical' objects in Alterra, including the blue lamps and Orogond's ring. Do you find these examples plausible, or do they force you to 'suspend belief'?

CHAPTER TEN:

How do the horses in Alterra compare with the portrayals of horses in other fantasy books? You'll see a lot of them throughout the series. I've noticed that many readers enjoy them, but that some do not! Which side of that fence do you come down on?


CHAPTER ELEVEN:

Galador's tale is tragic, and it explains a lot about his attitude toward Nelwyn (and toward life in general). The belief that the souls of the Elves are forever separated from all mortal races has caused quite a lot of angst throughout this trilogy (in fact, it is responsible for much of the story, as you'll learn once you have completed Ravenshade). What is your reaction to this particular point of Alterran cosmology? Eventually, we will visit this question again.

Now that you have read Galador's story, has your opinion of him changed at all? How did you react to this revelation of his past?





« Last Edit: April 02, 2010, 04:59:28 am by archer »
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    Offline Archer

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #1 on: March 31, 2010, 04:54:28 am »
    This is a test...I want to see if posting in a topic changes its position in the 'list'. This is only a test!

    Edit: Yep. It does. No point in trying to arrange them, then, is there?  :)
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    Offline Winter9

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #2 on: April 01, 2010, 07:52:03 am »
    Off we go then?!
    Proud Kindle-owner since 2.February 2010 (15.22)
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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #3 on: April 01, 2010, 10:24:41 am »
    I have read the trilogy earlier. This time around I had my K2 read to me while I was driving as I am in the middle of another book. The following are what I recorded after reading each section.
    CHAPTER ONE:
    1. What is your initial impression of Gaelen and Nelwyn? What differences do you see between them?
    2. We really haven't 'met' Gorgon yet, but what is your initial impression of him? What sort of creature do you visualize in chapter one?
    1. Both are capable and self reliant. Galen seems more confident and decisive while Nelwyn is more cautious and possibly more realistic.
    2. Gorgon does not value the lives of others and definitely does not like elves. At this point it is not clear why.
    CHAPTER TWO-THREE:
    1. Do you believe that Gaelen really had anything to do with saving Orogond's life? Do you believe he would have survived without her?
    2. You have now 'met' the four main protagonist characters. At this point, what four adjectives would you use to best describe each one?
    Gaelen
    Orogond
    Nelwyn
    Galador
    1. I think Gaelen made a difference as she provided a way for Orogond to save his energy for getting well. I doubt he would have survived otherwise but it was possible.
    2. Gaelen - intensely concerned
    Orogond - not sure at this point but tough and steady
    Nelwyn - young and cautious
    Galador - abrupt
    CHAPTER FOUR-FIVE:
    1. Okay, so NOW we've met Gorgon. What is your impression of him now? What questions do you have about him?
    2. What do you think of the Elvish italics? Does it bother you?
    3. It is rare that anyone sways Gaelen's course, yet Orogond manages to strike a 'bargain' with her. Galador could never have accomplished this. What qualities does Orogond have that allow him to persuade Gaelen?
    1. He has an intense hatred of Elves that sustains him. Why? What kind of creature is he. He does have a personal code that he follows as he kept his promise to Gelmyr.
    2. The Elvish italics do not bother me when I am reading. However this time I let my K2 read to me while I was driving. It reads the initial single quote character as 'backquote' but does not read the following single quote. Sometimes this is annoying as it seems as if the person is addressing someone named 'Backquote'. :D I eventually tuned it out as an audio signal that someone was speaking. Also, the K2 reads each letter of words in all CAPS as if it is an acronym. Again OK when read but somewhat annoying when the K2 is reading.
    3. He is quiet, practical, logical, and steady. He is not confrontational but persistent. He engages her in thoughtful conversation. This matches an effective way of dealing with my willful youngest granddaughter who has always had a strong view of how the would be and of her response to it. She has a strong view of right and wrong but she often comes to different conclusions than the ones expected.
    CHAPTER SIX:
    1. What is the first sign that Galador might actually have a sense of humor?
    2. Ulfar, though disgusting, might be of some economic use. Can you think of products that might be sold by 'Ulfar Unlimited'?
    1. Laughing at silly things.
    2. Glue and tanglefoot
    CHAPTER SEVEN-EIGHT:
    1. Here we see the goings-on in the Greatwood. What is your impression of Llewellys' attachment to Gaelen? Do you see him as a future threat or as a future friend to Orogond?
    2. Why do the Elves not approve of romantic attachments between themselves and mortal men?
    3. Ri-Aruin obviously does not approve of Llewellys' attachment to Gaelen. Why not, do you think?
    4. Gaelen's attitude toward her hair is obviously very different from Galador's. What does it say about each of them?
    1. He sees the relationship differently than she does; I think he is more romantically inclined. I think he is currently more a future threat.
    2. They are too different and have different lifespans. Hearts are sure to be broken.
    3. Rank and status
    4. She rates practicality far higher than appearance while he does the reverse.
    CHAPTER NINE:
    1. If you were lost in a mountain blizzard, which of the characters would you prefer to have as a companion?
    2. Do you identify with any of the characters you've met so far? If so, in what way?
    3. We've seen a few small examples of 'magical' objects in Alterra, including the blue lamps and Orogond's ring. Do you find these examples plausible, or do they force you to 'suspend belief'?
    1. Not sure. Orogond would have more knowledge of what a human would need (ex. snowshoes) while Gaelen is great at finding shelter.
    2. Gaelen as she is independent and more focused on results than appearances. Orogond next for similar reasons.
    3. The 'magical' objects so far seam reasonable.

    Offline Archer

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #4 on: April 01, 2010, 01:54:38 pm »
    Winter: Off we go!

    Anna: I, too, thought of 'Ulfa-glue'. The new 'miracle leg-waxing treatment'--ouch!  :D
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    Offline Winter9

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #5 on: April 01, 2010, 02:24:39 pm »
    I'm so torn right now!

    My sis need to read Hamlet for school before she can start Elfhunter. I really should wait for her. Luckily it's the start of April, and I have the reading game and the rest of Saving Sailor I can do. Really looking forward to stepping into the world of Alterra though! Wiii  ;D I have lots do dig into :D It's just so exiting being on this board, having a Kindle :D
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    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #6 on: April 01, 2010, 02:38:17 pm »
    Anna: I, too, thought of 'Ulfa-glue'. The new 'miracle leg-waxing treatment'--ouch!  :D
    Ouch! I would be worried that might take too much skin with the hair!

    My "tanglefoot" idea would not work if the Ulfa-goo is not sticky after it dries. If so, that would not prevent insects climbing up trees from getting stuck in it.

    I was wondering if Ulfa venom is poisonous when consumed. If so, then it might provide a poison for rats. "Rodents a problem? Use Ulfa-bait to get them out-a your storerooms." Otherwise I suppose assassins might use Ulfa venom to coat darts and blades.
    « Last Edit: April 01, 2010, 03:48:11 pm by Annalog »

    Offline Archer

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #7 on: April 01, 2010, 03:04:27 pm »
    Their venom is actually quite mild...more like a rather snarly, dreadful hallucinogenic anesthetic. You have to get bitten by a large number of them to suffer death. The reason the little buzzards are so dire when they bite men is that their mouths are incredibly septic! (Sorta like Komodo dragons.)
    The venom might actually have some medical use if properly sterilized and refined. I think I'd pass, though...  :P

    Add: When taken internally, Ulfa-venom has much the same effect as licking a Cane Toad.
    (groovy, man...)
    « Last Edit: April 01, 2010, 03:49:17 pm by archer »
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    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #8 on: April 01, 2010, 03:53:11 pm »
    Their venom is actually quite mild...more like a rather snarly, dreadful hallucinogenic anesthetic. You have to get bitten by a large number of them to suffer death. The reason the little buzzards are so dire when they bite men is that their mouths are incredibly septic! (Sorta like Komodo dragons.)
    The venom might actually have some medical use if properly sterilized and refined. I think I'd pass, though...  :P
    That makes sense. I suppose another use might be to use ulfas in the water in defensive moats. However it would be important to make sure that nothing would fall in the moat by accident. Their use would also prevent using the water in the moat for other purposes. Also the ulfas would need to be fed. Can ulfas be used to clean the inside of hides or would they eat the hide but not the hair?

    Offline Archer

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #9 on: April 01, 2010, 04:09:38 pm »
    They would eat the internal organs and maybe some of the subcutaneous fat. They might clean hides...but again, because of bacterial contamination you'd have to salt the heck out of 'em...

    (I did create myself a disgusting critter, didn't I?)  :D
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    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #10 on: April 01, 2010, 04:25:30 pm »
    Yes you did! I think that only Lord Wrothgar would use ulfas in moats.

    I wonder if future scientists of Alterra will find powerful antibacterial substances in the flesh of the ulfa? ;)

    Offline Archer

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #11 on: April 01, 2010, 04:56:47 pm »
    Yes you did! I think that only Lord Wrothgar would use ulfas in moats.

    I wonder if future scientists of Alterra will find powerful antibacterial substances in the flesh of the ulfa? ;)
    Hmmm...interesting idea, Watson!  :)
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    Offline stacydan

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #12 on: April 01, 2010, 05:36:49 pm »
    CHAPTER ONE:
    1. What is your initial impression of Gaelen and Nelwyn? What differences do you see between them?
    2. We really haven't 'met' Gorgon yet, but what is your initial impression of him? What sort of creature do you visualize in chapter one?

    They each obviously have different talents and Nelwyn seems to be able to keep a clear head while Gaelen is often ruled by emotion and without thinking things through clearly, she seems impatient and ready for action while Nelwyn is more cautious.

    My initial impression of Gorgon from chapter one was either flesh-eating demon or shapeshifter.

    Offline stacydan

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #13 on: April 01, 2010, 05:47:16 pm »

    CHAPTER SEVEN-EIGHT:
    1. Here we see the goings-on in the Greatwood. What is your impression of Llewellys' attachment to Gaelen? Do you see him as a future threat or as a future friend to Orogond?
    2. Why do the Elves not approve of romantic attachments between themselves and mortal men?
    3. Ri-Aruin obviously does not approve of Llewellys' attachment to Gaelen. Why not, do you think?
    4. Gaelen's attitude toward her hair is obviously very different from Galador's. What does it say about each of them?


    1.  Llewellys seems to want more than friendship from Gaelen and he is jealous of Orogonds relationship with her.  I could see him being a threat in the future.

    2.  since Elves are immortal and mortal men are not, it would be very difficult for them to have a relationship with a mortal knowing they would die in a very short time.  The Elves' disapproval is a form of emotional self-protection.

    3.  I think he considers Gaelen a common wood elf, not fitted for the son of a king.

    4.  Galador seems more typical of an Elf, his hair is not only a source of pride (and vanity!) but also identifies him as Elven.  Gaelen doesn't care what others think of her short hair, she cut it for practical reasons.

    Offline Archer

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #14 on: April 01, 2010, 05:52:06 pm »
    From Stacy:
    since Elves are immortal and mortal men are not, it would be very difficult for them to have a relationship with a mortal knowing they would die in a very short time.  The Elves' disapproval is a form of emotional self-protection.

    That certainly is one huge down-side to being immortal.

    from Stacy: My initial impression of Gorgon from chapter one was either flesh-eating demon or shapeshifter.

    Cool! I hadn't thought of a shapeshifter, but I can see how one might go there...
     :)
    « Last Edit: April 01, 2010, 06:44:54 pm by archer »
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    Offline ibrewalot

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #15 on: April 01, 2010, 07:11:11 pm »
    I don't know...I wrestle with the whole quandary they make out of the immortal/mortal relationship.  If I was Orogond and I fell in love with Gaelen (the obvious choice of the two elves!  She's far more fun and far less staid than Nelwyn), I wouldn't worry about it being a "short" time.  If he fell in love with a mortal woman it would be for the same amount of time, right?  If you find someone you fall in love with, it's ALWAYS going to be too short a period of time you have with them.

    From Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem In Memoriam:27, 1850:

        I hold it true, whate'er befall;
        I feel it, when I sorrow most;
        'Tis better to have loved and lost
        Than never to have loved at all.

    Offline Archer

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #16 on: April 02, 2010, 04:01:24 am »
    Ibrew:
    very apt observation.

    That poem by Tennyson is exactly Orogond's point to Galador. He can either love her for the time allotted and then part from her forever, or he can live all his life in longing for her and then part from her forever. He's willing to suffer the latter to enjoy the former, as he'll suffer the latter no matter what. The part of this that is most painful, however, is the complete, presumably eternal separation after death. As we know, though, such presumptions are always open to speculation and challenge.

    Just because 'it is written' that Aontar forever segregates the spirits of the Elves after death does not make it so. Orogond still has hope--some believe that all the races will eventually be reunited.

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #17 on: April 02, 2010, 08:32:31 am »
    I think horses this far into the story are depicted similarly in other stories...the key being this far into the story.  It's obvious the people rely heavily on their horses and have a "connection" to them, but I think that is true even in the non-Alterran world from what I know of people that have horses. 

    To me, the horses REALLY took on a new light once I got into Fire-heart and they began to interact with each other.  Elfhunter lays that foundation so it makes more sense when it's expanded on later.

    Offline drenfrow

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #18 on: April 02, 2010, 05:33:34 pm »

    CHAPTER ONE:
    1. What is your initial impression of Gaelen and Nelwyn? What differences do you see between them?

    My initial impression is that while very different, they complement each other.  Like many good relationships, their differences actually strengthen their relationship.


    CHAPTER FOUR-FIVE:
    2. What do you think of the Elvish italics? Does it bother you?
    I have to confess, I find the italics distracting.  I'm mostly through the book and it still seems to me when I see the italics that I'm going to hear a characters thoughts instead of dialogue.  It doesn't seem to add anything to the story to know that they are speaking high elvish.

    CHAPTER SEVEN-EIGHT:
    1. Here we see the goings-on in the Greatwood. What is your impression of Llewellys' attachment to Gaelen? Do you see him as a future threat or as a future friend to Orogond?
    2. Why do the Elves not approve of romantic attachments between themselves and mortal men?
    3. Ri-Aruin obviously does not approve of Llewellys' attachment to Gaelen. Why not, do you think?
    4. Gaelen's attitude toward her hair is obviously very different from Galador's. What does it say about each of them?

    1. It seems like he would like to be with her but maybe knows he can't.  He doesn't feel like he will be a friend to Oragond.  At this point I see him not being really bad, but maybe mucking up the works at some point.
    2. Those elves, they always think they're better than everyone else. ;)
    3.  I think Ri-Aruin thinks Gaelen isn't good enough for Llewellys.  I find this aspect of the elves interesting.  I don't usually think of there being "classes" of elves.  This adds an interesting spin.


    CHAPTER NINE:
    3. We've seen a few small examples of 'magical' objects in Alterra, including the blue lamps and Orogond's ring. Do you find these examples plausible, or do they force you to 'suspend belief'?
    I love the magic.  Bring it on.

    CHAPTER TEN:

    How do the horses in Alterra compare with the portrayals of horses in other fantasy books? You'll see a lot of them throughout the series. I've noticed that many readers enjoy them, but that some do not! Which side of that fence do you come down on?
    I'm in the pasture on this one!  I really enjoy writings that show connections between humans and animals.
      


     
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    Offline Archer

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #19 on: April 02, 2010, 05:57:40 pm »
    That's what I love about our Kindlefriends. You guys are so smart!
    drenfrow, you'll be glad to know that my italics obsession diminishes as the trilogy progresses, mostly because the characters are more comfortable all speaking Aridani (there are a lot more non-elvish folk introduced).
    I did away with them altogether in the new series (book one of which has been written).

    Guess what, guys! I am working on the second book in the Undiscovered Realms Alterran series!

    I have returned...resistance is futile.  ;)
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    Offline mom2karen

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #20 on: April 03, 2010, 07:23:45 am »
    Woot!  Another Archer book in progress!

    We're in the process of adopting a dog and it occurred to me that a relationship between an elf and human is similar in some ways to one between a dog and human.  As a human we know that our time with our dog will be short and we will grieve their loss, but we allow ourselves to fall in love anyway.  The affection, love and companionship we have during their short lives makes it worthwhile.  The perspective of the human to the elf might be different though because growing old while your love stays the same would be very hard.  I doubt that occurs to a dog however.  ;) 

    Offline Archer

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #21 on: April 03, 2010, 07:50:45 am »
    Mom2: I think dogs look at us more as very young children look at their parents. All good things (should!) stem from us...we protect them, train them, and fulfill their needs. In return, they give us affection and loyalty, they work for us, and they protect us. Animals who normally live in packs make great pets! :-) I hope you get your Adolfo...keep us posted!

    Incidentally...Gaelen panics every time she sees a new grey hair on Orogond's head. She knows them ALL. To her, Orogond's lifespan is truly a brief, yet wonderful, flash in the pan. The first time she sees a REALLY old human, she turns away with tears of horror and sympathy in her eyes. Orogond helps her to realize that it's only one more challenge he must overcome--aging gracefully and accepting his ultimate fate. Gaelen has almost more admiration for men than her little body can hold (and she is rare among Elves for that reason among many).

    I have just finished a really nifty chapter about events which occurred during the Time of Mystery--the origins of men and Elves. I LOVE writing Alterran cosmology/history. L-O-V-E it!
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    Offline stacydan

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #22 on: April 03, 2010, 08:29:10 am »
    CHAPTER TEN:

    How do the horses in Alterra compare with the portrayals of horses in other fantasy books? You'll see a lot of them throughout the series. I've noticed that many readers enjoy them, but that some do not! Which side of that fence do you come down on?


    I actually like the sections on the horses, it shows their intelligence, which I think most people underestimate the intelligence of animals.  And it also shows they are capable of bonding with their humans, wanting to be with them, not only for companionship, but also to protect them and to help them however they can.  I know animals have thoughts and feelings too, and they can sense our moods.  when I was home for a week after my gallbladder surgery, my little dog stayed in bed right beside me the whole time, he knew something wasn't right and he wanted to make me feel better.

    Offline Archer

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #23 on: April 04, 2010, 07:45:47 pm »
    Gallbladder surgery? Ouch!  :-\

    Dogs are wonderfully sensitive to our emotions as well as physical pain. Most people don't realize that horses can be, as well. In my experience, mares tend more toward this behavior. I had an Arabian mare years ago who actually lay down in the stall with me when I was sitting in the corner, depressed and weepy. She actually dropped into the straw right beside me and placed her warm neck against me. She kept me warm and cheered me up at the same time.

    Another mare I used to compete in endurance used to get depressed if I was too tired and sore. When my spirits fell, so did hers. On one memorable very hilly fifty-miler in summer heat and humidity, she actually lost two shoes on two separate legs of the ride, necessitating my walking about fifteen miles on foot. I was knackered! She got really depressed. Well, I couldn't have a depressed horse, so I started singing. Sure enough, she perked right up! Trouble was, the only thing I could think of to sing was the theme from 'Casper the Friendly Ghost'. After about the twentieth run-through, it started gettin' a little old. Did the trick, though!
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    Offline ibrewalot

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    Re: Part I: Farath Talam! (Welcome to our realm)--Chapters 1-11
    « Reply #24 on: April 05, 2010, 05:19:02 am »
    Casper?  That's one I had to go look up to remember how it went, although I remember watching it a lot when I was a kid.  I found it right next to the theme from Captain Kangaroo!   :D  They don't make 'em like that anymore, that's for sure!  My kids watch Bakugan and Pokemon for cartoons.

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