(urth) Silk/Horn in the Matachin Tower
dstockhoff at verizon.net
Wed Feb 6 10:05:26 PST 2013
I think you have a point. Blue and Green are more open in a sense, since they are after all merely earthlike planets. The narrator need not "leak" the concepts of shadelow and nightside, and so on. As a result the narration is perhaps less interesting in a way: none of the narrators are in quite the box Severian and Silk's biographers are in.
I don't see this as a loss, however. The mysteries are there nevertheless. It may be that our fixation with understanding the Mother and the Neighbors are a little too conditioned by the previous books, and the reader should "reset" to a narrated world like our own ancient one in which there may well be gods, demigods, and monsters---who knows? It's not like the planets were scanned by exogeographers of the Federation of Planets. Horn lives on a tiny island near a tiny town, and that's 100% of the Blue he knows before his travels. So Blue is both tiny/closed/intimate and vast/open/unknown. Hard to capture that.
Think more of Latro and the Greeks the way Wolfe would write them---also likely to come from a tiny town on a tiny island, only to wander the Mediterranean or Asia, with gods just out of sight and monsters in the forest.
> From: Antonin Scriabin <kierkegaurdian at gmail.com>
>To: The Urth Mailing List <urth at lists.urth.net>
>Sent: Wednesday, February 6, 2013 10:34 AM
>Subject: Re: (urth) Silk/Horn in the Matachin Tower
>The number of mysteries doesn't make it more mysterious. Also, the more dreamlike cadence and flow of Short Sun lessens the impact. The very slow, realist approach in Long Sun makes the pervasive mysteries more forceful, to me. It's as if in Short Sun all bets are off, so nothing is as impressive, on the mystery front. In Long Sun, I felt like I was in a real world for 1200 pages, and it's mysteries were my mysteries.
>On Feb 6, 2013 10:29 AM, "Marc Aramini" <marcaramini at yahoo.com> wrote:
>I always say, stop, Marc, you know how this ends ... but anyway, I can't.
>>Way more mysteries in Short Sun. The transmogrification of liana into inhumi, the presence of the vanished Gods, the identity of that stiff legged bird like fellow at the top of the cliff, the presence of Silk and Oreb in the stories of the past, the grabbing of Hyacinth's spirit in dream travel, the actualy identity of the narrator at any given point in the story, the fate of Urth (real horrorshow like); Auk's ghost, a Chenille ringer, and the ring that changes color and shape in Dorp, etc.
>>Lots of stuff. And of course there's time travel shennanigans.
>>--- On Wed, 2/6/13, Antonin Scriabin <kierkegaurdian at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>From: Antonin Scriabin <kierkegaurdian at gmail.com>
>>>Subject: Re: (urth) Silk/Horn in the Matachin Tower
>>>To: "The Urth Mailing List" <urth at lists.urth.net>
>>>Date: Wednesday, February 6, 2013, 6:38 AM
>>>Perhaps "tacked on" was a bit too harsh. Let's just say that I find Short Sun to be quite a bit less mysterious than its predecessors, and the insertion of Nessus, the Matachin Tower, etc., adds to that impression. Starting off Long Sun for example, mysteries abound. What is the Whorl? What time is it? Who/what are the gods? Cards? The Writings? How big is the Whorl? Etc., etc., etc. It took a lot of time, allusion, and build-up to get there, so when the "Typhon is Pas" moment did come, it completely blew me away. By the time the Short Sun rolls around, however, we know all these things, and additionally we know the connection between the Red Sun Whorl and the rest of the elements of Long Sun. The mysteries of Blue and Green are never presented in a way that made me beyond eager to find our their solutions ... they seem less fun in comparison to the other works, partially because we seem to spend quite a bit less time on them than
we did on board the Whorl. I suppose the focus of Short Sun is intentionally much different, so perhaps it is my fault for expecting more Long and New?
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