This month I’m participating in the Wyrd & Wonder read-along of The Ninth Rain by Jen Williams. I’m really excited the gang behind Wyrd & Wonder decided to put this one on because I’ve had the book for over a year and this finally gave me the push I needed to read it. The Ninth Rain is the first book in The Winnowing Flame trilogy. I’ll put the book blurb at the bottom of the post if you want to know more. Wyrd & Wonder is an online collaboration and celebration of all things fantasy in the month of May. I’ll add links about it at the bottom too.
On Thursday’s from now till the end of the month we’ll be posting responses to questions about the book. The questions come from the book gods (this week that would be goddess Lisa). I’ll try my best not to include too many spoilers, but it IS a read along and at some point there’s bound to come a time where I can’t avoid it. Hopefully if you’ve read the book you’ll get some enjoyment out of this. If you haven’t read the book I hope it sparks some interest for you and you’ll decide to pick it up.
OK, enough of that…on to the questions.
An island prison. A religious leader. A witch-powered steam train. Giant bats. I think it’s time we talked about the Winnowry! What do you think creates a fell witch? Where does their power come from? Why are they all women? Is the Winnowry a despicable organisation profiting from controlling women or keeping the world safe?
Oh wow I’ve been wondering about all of this!
- What creates a fell witch? I have no idea. Or at least no firm idea. Part of me was thinking maybe it had to do with some fall-out from the eighth rain but then I couldn’t remember if they existed prior to the eighth rain or not. But do their powers somehow come from the tree god? I don’t know. But I really like the fell-witches…I’m just waiting for them all to rebel.
- Where does their power come from? See above.
- Why are the all women? No clue. Like none.
- Is the Winnowry a despicable organisation…? Yes. Yeah I don’t have any good thoughts or feelings about The Winnowry. Even if they were once established to be a good and peaceful haven for fell witches I think it quickly turned into something else. I don’t really think it was ever a noble institution though. The ONLY thing I like about it are the bats and the steampunk train. I kinda dig steampunk elements.
“There’s a world in there.” Ravening insectile hordes, battle moons (or Death Stars, if you prefer), fertiliser to drive you Wild – and this week we venture inside a Behemoth. What do you make of the weird and creepy world of the Jure’lia?
Weird…just flipping weird. They really do seem totally alien. The Behemoth’s seem like they’re are alive even if they aren’t completely sentient. Organic at minimum. But what’s really weird is how diverse the various Jure’lia seem. From the beetle like bugs who turn people into zombies, to the mother-spider things to the worms spreading varnish that acts like trapping bugs (or people) in amber (though it’s green) to the organic spaceships, to the queen who is always described in more human like terms. They just don’t seem to follow a pattern other than weird and alien.
Then there’s that liquid that makes things mutate and grow. What’s the purpose of it? Are they trying to colonize and terraform? And where’s their planet. Do they travel to and from worlds with those crystals like this is a portal fantasy? So many unanswered questions and plenty to keep you wondering. I’ll just have to agree at this point it is weird and creepy and our adventuring party needs to watch out.
I do have this sneaking suspicion the parasite spirits are spirits of the old beasts who fought alongside the Eborans. Somehow they are trapped in this form and can’t escape. The aren’t really from the Jure’lia at all. And Noon’s tapping into their power will help awaken them. Maybe this will be the new role for the witches…conduits for the parasite spirits to harness their power.
Where do you think Vintage has gone? …and what do you think is going on with Noon?
I’m guessing at this point Vintage is off in search of her former Eboran lover. How she knows where to look for her I have no idea. There’s a hint she knew where she was at at one time but how many years ago was that and is there any expectation Vintage will find her? To those last two questions I have no idea. And just WHY Vintage has gone off in search of her (or whomever) I have no idea. It was rather sudden.
Two siblings determined to save their god. What do you think is going to happen in Ebora?
This is where I see the big clash coming. Hest is going to pull something with all the humans in time for Tor to show up and confront her. Bad things are coming I think. I’m starting to really believe the Jure’lia queen has somehow switched places with the tree god and Hest is gonna awaken her and usher in something really terrible. Tor and Noon will be there to confront her but maybe they will be too late. Maybe Tor spreads some of that new found liquid on the tree roots and that awakens the queen and Hest becomes a conduit. I don’t know. I just think it’s gonna be bad and the book ends on a cliffhanger there.
Well that’s it for week three. Have you read the book? If so what are your answers to the questions? Answer in the comments. If you haven’t read the book but are now intrigued let me know.
Want To Join In?
It’s not too late to join in the fun! If you’d like to dive in with us DO IT! We’d love to have you. Or at least I would.
Right now fellow readers include:
- imyril at There’s Always Room For One More
- Lisa at Dear Geek Place
- Sarah at Dragons and Zombies
- Nikki the Bibliophibian
- Mayri the bookforager
Our reading schedule is as follows:
- THURSDAY 9th: Beginning through end of Ch10
- THURSDAY 16th: Chapter 11 through end of Ch23
- THURSDAY 23rd: Chapter 24 through end of Ch36
- THURSDAY 30th: 37 to the end
You can find more on the discussion on the Goodreads group page here.
You can follow along with Wyrd & Wonder all month on Twitter as well. Find their Twitter handle @wyrdandwonder. There are two read-alongs and a slew of other ways you can participate including reviews, giveaways, challenges, features and more. See more about what all’s going on in imyril’s post Quest Log The First: the party gathers.
The Ninth Rain, by Jen Williams
“The great city of Ebora once glittered with gold. Now its streets are stalked by wolves. Tormalin the Oathless has no taste for sitting around waiting to die while the realm of his storied ancestors falls to pieces – talk about a guilt trip. Better to be amongst the living, where there are taverns full of women and wine.
When eccentric explorer, Lady Vincenza ‘Vintage’ de Grazon, offers him employment, he sees an easy way out. Even when they are joined by a fugitive witch with a tendency to set things on fire, the prospect of facing down monsters and retrieving ancient artefacts is preferable to the abomination he left behind.
But not everyone is willing to let the Eboran empire collapse, and the adventurers are quickly drawn into a tangled conspiracy of magic and war. For the Jure’lia are coming, and the Ninth Rain must fall…” – Blurb from Goodreads.