I thought that the dedication from Jude was sweet, although I wish that she'd dedicated it to all of the readers. I know several people, myself included, who are huge fans but not on the message board. C'mon Jude, we still love the books!!
The excerpt opened from the Outcast's POV. I have to say, this villain is FASCINATING! He sounds even more intense and dedicated than any of the other villains have been, and I can't help having a slight obsession with him. He sounds like he was really close to Grace.. Okay, this is probably crazy, but I have this theory - what if the Outcast...is Grace's husband?? They never really mention him throughout the series, and I just can't help but wonder. I remember in Jude Watson's post about the series, she said that the Outcast was a famous villain's brother. We also know that he's an Ekat. What if he's Bae Oh's brother?? Or an older step-brother to Isabel Kabra? (I added 'step' in there so that Ian and Amy could still be together, and the fact that he could be Ekat would make sense.) Just some thoughts. What do you think??
For the rest of the excerpt, we're reading about Ian. Now, I love Ian. He's always been a favorite of mine, and I've loved watching his character develop throughout the books. With that said.... I kind of feel like Jude took a step back with him in this chapter. I usually ADORE Jude's writing, especially from characters with a lot of depth like Irina or Ian. But I feel like in this chapter, Ian was almost....the way he was back in the earliest books. In series three, I was really happy with Ian, because he lost a LOT of his arrogance. The loss of Natalie really changed him, and I loved the development of his character. I'm hoping that he improves as the books go along, but I'm a bit worried.
I kind of think that this is partly because of Cara. When he was still infatuated with Amy, she gave him something to strive for. He became better because of her incouragment. He wanted to be better FOR HER. I don't get the feeling that Cara gives him that. I also think (and I could be wrong here), that he likes the IDEA of Cara better than he likes Cara herself. It's almost like he thinks, because they both had to escape from evil parents, they're SUPPOSED to be together, when in fact they shouldn't be. He even goes so far as to call her 'not his type' and 'incredibly annoying'. He also says, "she was his one true pairing...she just didn't know it yet." So maybe she doesn't care for him, either? I have to say...it kind of feels like Carian isn't going to work out, and I'm jumping for joy. :D
Despite my worries Ian's characterization, I do love how Jude did a good job with the Britishness, the arrogance was a little too strong for my tastes. The Britishness cracks me up..
Well, I hope that I didn't ramble *too* much in this post. What do you think of this excerpt? Comment!!! :) Oh! And FYI, I won't be doing a quote today because I spent so long ranting... ;)