Tag Archives: Podesta

The Gathering Edge – Chapter 31


In which Bechimo‘s crew consider their next move.

It looks like we’re heading into the big moment now, whatever it is; the book’s starting to do that thing where the chapters get shorter and closer together which is such a great trick for increasing the pace and sense of urgency when the reader isn’t reading them one chapter a day.
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Dragon Ship – Chapter 30

Velaskiz Rotundo

In which Bechimo‘s crew increases.

The revelation at the end of the chapter is ambiguous, since there have been two Joyitas in this book, but it makes sense that it’s B. Joyita, because that’s the one Theo would definitely recognise and more importantly if the norbears don’t know about Bechimo’s copy they’ve got no reason to wonder whether Theo knows the original. So the implication I take from this is that Hevelin managed to notice and get an impression of Bechimo and Joyita despite them keeping quiet while there were passengers on board – and that the norbears, in an echo of Theo’s thought earlier in the chapter, consider B. Joyita to be a person.

That said, it would be interesting if Sinaya actually did know Jermone Joyita, either personally (how old do norbears live to? I’d say not that long based on how aged Hevelin is, but we don’t actually know how old he already was when we first encountered him) or through some version of a memory passed from norbear to norbear. (It would also be another point in favour of Bechimo‘s creation being during-after Jethri’s lifetime, since “Out of True” suggests that it was in Jethri’s lifetime that shipboard norbears became a thing.)

Speaking of Joyita, this chapter has another mention of the number of rings on his hand, currently still holding steady at three.

Meanwhile, in the far reaches of the plot, the Uncle is off to check on a mysterious project of which we have not previously heard, and he’s taking Daav along for want of a safe place to leave him. Which offers the tantalising possibility that Daav will resurface in good time to learn something about this mysterious project himself.

Dragon Ship – Chapter 29


In which Theo seeks a relief of tension.

This is one of those chapters where I’d probably have something to say if I were reading it for the first time, but because I’m re-reading I’m just nodding along going “Yes, I remember that bit” and nothing’s jumping out at me as remarkable.

I do kind of wonder if Hevelin’s intense interest in Theo’s mental picture of Daav was all on Daav’s account, or if some of it was due to her including the Tree in the picture.

Dragon Ship – Chapter 28


In which Bechimo leaves Codrescu.

There are some intriguing hints in Bechimo’s flashback. Joyita being removed from the project early. The Uncle seeing things differently from the Builders (and perhaps an implication that he too has been removed from the project?). Another mention of that subetheric communication method. And, more prosaically, the origin of Bechimo’s habit of referring to “mere ships”.

This is not an occasion for petty point-scoring, so if anybody noticed it’s wise of them not to say so, but it amuses me that Eylot Control call Theo “First Class Pilot Theo Waitley”, when in less fraught circumstances they would likely have said that they don’t recognise Theo’s qualification.

Dragon Ship – Chapter 25


In which Theo is reunited with with two old comrades.

The fact that cadets from Anlingdin are actively involved in the action against Codrescu brings back the worry of Theo having to be in direct conflict with somebody she knew personally. Although, after two years during which most of Theo’s age-mates would presumably have graduated, if the authorities didn’t get them out of the Academy some other way, I’m not sure how many friends she’s likely to still have in the current student body.

There’s a moment, when Theo is suggesting to Hevelin that he stay put and out of the way, when her speech pattern sounds like Rig Tranza’s. Which makes sense, and probably indicates that on some level she’s drawing on a memory of him as a model of politely but firmly suggesting a course of action.

Dragon Ship – Chapter 24

Codrescu Station

In which Theo consults with the Guild Master.

It occurs to me that the publication dates of Dragon Ship and “Skyblaze” are close enough together that the authors were probably working on them around the same time. The reason it occurs to me now is that the reaction of the pilots at Tradedesk brings to mind the discussion in “Skyblaze” about the phrase “somebody ought to do something”, and the idea that some people feel that their responsibility ends once they’ve uttered the phrase, while others feel that uttering the phrase gives them a responsibility to be the somebody.

Landed Alien

In which Kara ven’Arith takes a very long tenday tour.

I take note of the way Kara’s mother and Kara’s delm are always mentioned in this story in the same breath, and the way those mentions are worded, and in addition consider the similar mention of Kara’s mother early in Saltation, and the conclusion I draw is that this is one of those Liaden melant’i situations where “mother” and “delm” are two hats worn by a single person but spoken of separately because the same person might be required to consider a situation differently depending on which set of eyes she’s regarding it with.

The Station Master is another addition to the list of characters for whom the authors of have chosen not to provide gendered pronouns. I might not have found it worth mentioning, but that there’s a sentence near the end of the story which attracted attention by going somewhat out of its way to avoid a pronoun.

Tomorrow: Agent of Change

Saltation – Chapter 27

Codrescu Station
Eylot Nearspace

In which Theo is involved in a salvage operation.

Guild Master Peltzer, with his historic Eylot name, stands as a reminder that Guild pilots have much in common wherever they hail from, and that not all pilots from Eylot are like the Young Pilots of Eylot. Mind you, he’s seen more of the wide universe than the Young Pilots, if — as seems likely — he’s the same Pilot Peltzer from Mouse and Dragon, who first gave Hevelin a job with the Pilots Guild many years ago and many light years from Eylot. (Or is it too obvious to say that a pilot who’s achieved Guild Master has seen more of the wide universe than a young pilot still in the academy?)

Firegems have been mentioned before, but I think this is the first time we’ve had such a detailed explanation of their place in the economy of the galaxy.

Saltation – Chapter 26

Codrescu Station
Eylot Nearspace

In which Theo becomes a Guild member in good standing.

The bit about Hevelin being more directly inquisitive and seeming to understand more than the norbears in Vashtara‘s pet library accords with what I remember from their respective previous appearances. It’s also interesting, although there isn’t enough information to be sure what it means, if anything. Is it because Hevelin is older than the pet library norbears? Or because they’re “hothouse norbears”, raised in a comfortable environment (by people who think they’re just clever animals) while Hevelin’s been making his own way in the universe? Or perhaps the line of causality runs the other way, and Hevelin’s intellect and personality led him as a young norbear to choose a wandering life instead of settling for a cushy spot somewhere.