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Keddi [userpic]
The Disorderly Knights
by Keddi (luisadeza)
at April 4th, 2008 (11:59 am)
current location: Bonn
current song: John Paul Jones - Snake Eyes

I finished The Disorderly Knights about two weeks ago and grace_poppy  asked me to post about my thoughts on it.
Since I was on holiday I didn't get around to it earlier.
So, what did I think (besides OMG! the writing of that woman is amazing):

So, she fooled me. I really liked Gabriel and also Joleta at first. I couldn't stand Jerott, just like she probably intended...

The whole Oonagh story was a bit lost on me, I fear. I couldn't really sympathise with her for some reason, and I didn't believe for one second that she was dead, because I know Dorothy Dunnett's little tricks by now! ;)
At least a little, because Will's death took me completely by surprise, and how could she kill Sir Wat, too? And Tom Erskine! By now I fear she's as heartless as C. S. Forester (little Hornblower reference here, sorry) and will just kill all the characters you really got to like... *clings to Richard*
How Lymond bore the accusations against him and the fact that Buccleuch believed them, showed so much of his strength and sensitivity (hm, that's not quite the right word, maybe empathy?) though!

Oh, and the Strozzis make an appereance! :D I really have to get the Niccolò series after I finished this one, because Renaissance Florence is love! (For some reason I imagine Leone looking just like King Richard in Disney's Robin Hood by the way, how ridiculous is that? XD )

I must say once it was clear that Joleta was pregnant and had been in the past already, I kinda guessed at the incest bit, but as I said, from the beginning of it all I'd never have guessed that there was this cesspool of iniquity hiding behind the saintly appearance of Gabriel. (Gabriel, one of my favourite names, too. It made it so much easier to fool me. XD )

Oh, and just because it has to be said: Philippa has grown on me so much now. You go, girl!
And that whole idea of that fighting force was so very modern. Mercenaries with an ethic. I still don't think Machiavelli would have approved.

This was all oh, so very tragic in the end! I didn't really want Lymond to kill Gabriel there in that church, but neither did I want him to escape!
That fighting scene was breathtaking! I really don't know how she does it! I can't recall any book that could describe a fight so vividly that it actually had me gasping at one point as you would maybe do when you watch a fight scene. I recall feeling like this during the fight between Richard and Lymond in the first book, and I really can't say which of these scenes impressed me more.

And what can I say about Lymond's son? Do I need to mention it was heartbreaking how he reacted to the news? God, I so hope he can keep that promise, no, the oath, he made to his son in front of that shrine!

And because I'm already about halfway through Pawn in Frankincense (those books are far too addicting, although I try not to read as fast as my flat mate who is already on page 200 or so in the last book, so it will last a bit longer), another little doubt:

So, that scene in which Jerott confesses his love to Marthe and all goes horribly wrong (Poor Jerott! I really like him in this book, but he stands in his own way quite a lot, doesn't he?): Is that comment about Lymond smelling of sweet basil and spikenard rose a direct hint on somebody that I just didn't get or is it one of these allusions Mrs Dunnett likes to make that get resolved later or not at all?
Of course I know what it's hinting at, but I'm wondering if at this point I should just guess or already know...

I also squeed a bit about them being in Germany. XD


Posted by: bluekaty (bluekaty)
Posted at: April 14th, 2008 01:29 pm (UTC)

I really liked Gabriel and also Joleta at first. I couldn't stand Jerott
It was the opposite for me, I didn't like those two but I was really developing a weak spot for Jerrot (I could never resist blak hair and aquiline features!), thanks God he is not a monk any longer.
Is that comment about Lymond smelling of sweet basil and spikenard rose a direct hint on somebody that I just didn't get
I was wondering about that too. Since it happens after Marthe's allusions about Jerrot and Lymond's homosexual inclinations, I thought it may be a reference to Lymond having some kind of intecourse with the Aga Morat ( Jerrot also calls him "stinking catamite"). However it seems unlikely to me...

Posted by: Keddi (luisadeza)
Posted at: June 14th, 2008 09:05 am (UTC)

XD Yes, thank God.
He's so much more likeable in Pawn in Frankincense, although he stands in his own way most of the time.

One day I'll reread all the books and work it all out. XD

Sorry this took me so long.

Posted by: lapislazuli67 (lapislazuli67)
Posted at: September 10th, 2008 06:12 pm (UTC)


this entry is already a bit older, but I couldn't resist here. ;-)

Is that comment about Lymond smelling of sweet basil and spikenard rose a direct hint on somebody that I just didn't get

Yes, it's a hint in direction to the Aga Morat. But you know that probably by now? :-D
I thought it was rather obvious when the Aga didn't let them go on to Djerba and Lymond went with him into his tent.

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: January 1st, 2011 05:22 pm (UTC)

You will know exactly how Lymond got that smell on him if you look back for a previous mention of it. To save you going backwards and forwards through the book, here's how I read it: it is the Aga Morat who uses a spikenard and basil perfume. In the scene where they are intercepted and all of the Knights of Saint John accompanying them are massacred, the bargain tacitly struck by Lymond with the Aga Morat is that he goes with him to save Jerott's life. Jerott is unaware of what exactly is going on in his befuddled state after the fire. Lymond continues the relationship while they are all in captivity. Why? He answers that question himself: all the usual reasons.I would say that 1. he found it expedient, and 2. it gave him a degree of sexual release, even if all the evidence is that he wasn't attracted to the Aga Morat. You also have to remember that by the time of the exchange in the garden, he has been deliberately addicted to opium and is beginning to show the effects.

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