This week, I read from page 32-40
So I only read Chapter Five and it follows Laia and her search to find the Resistance. I’m trying to read more in the next couple of weeks, but I’m not sure. I’m thinking about trying to make time to read two/ three chapters per week.
- The Catacombs of Serra
What’s happened so far? CONTAINS SPOILERS
- LAIA is in the catacombs. She wanders around for hours, but isn’t too worried. It isn’t until night time that Laia realizes how stupid she was by coming in the catacombs, but she motivates herself to continue. But she finds them, however, a patrol approaches and Laia is forced to follow the Resistance.
I never noticed this before, but there are so many instances where Laia gets scared, and I just really appreciate that. Many books now have snarky heroines who know no fear and can do no harm. It’s a nice change to have a narrator who messes up and isn’t so perfect.
Personally, I find the setting to be the best part of any book, and Tahir shares the world perfectly. Society-wise, it models ancient Rome, but she brings in aspects of South Asian culture and Middle Eastern myths and I just really like the diversity.
On page 39, Tahir wrote, “Izzat means many things. Strength, honor, pride. But in the past century, it’s come to mean something specific: freedom.” So Izzat is basically the motto of the Resistance and that’s how Laia figures out its them. But going back to how Tahir brought in south-asian culture- Izzat literally means respect in Hindi. I know it’s like a really small detail, but it’s just so cool to see non-Latin or non-Greek words in fantasy literature.
So that concludes my thoughts on Chapter Five, and I’m just going to include some quotes I really liked.
“Stop Laia. No such things as ghosts. As a child, I spent hours listening to Tribal tale-spinners weave their legends of the mythical fey: the Nightbringer and his fellow jinn: ghosts, efrits, wraiths, and wights.” (p. 35)
“Sana. A Scholar name, short and simple. If she were Martial, her name would have been Agrippina Cassius or Chrysilla Aroman or something equally long and pompous.” (p.37)