In which Zhena Trelu has guests for dinner.
This seems like a good time to mention again that I do appreciate the emotional and character aspects of the Liaden stories, and in fact they’re a big part of why these are some of my favourite things to read, but I’m not very good at appreciating them verbally. So instead you get observations like these:
In the local calendar, the year is somewhat after 1475, which indicates that local civilization’s been going for a while. Whether it’s actually been going longer than the Standard Calendar, which is only up to Year 1392, depends on how long the years are.
The technique of illuminating a word’s pronunciation by describing the efforts of someone unfamiliar with it gets an extensive workout in this chapter, both for words new to our protagonists, like “Borril”, and words long familiar, like “Korval”. It’s largely thanks to this chapter that I got a strong grip on the correct pronunciation of “Korval” — but I’ve just realised on this re-reading that I’ve been mispronouncing “Borril” for years.