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Osprey's Tale

I see that some of you are power readers and have already dashed through Secrets, or are getting there fast!

So! Osprey's tale! Talk to me about it. (And the Old One's story...)

There may be spoilers in comments.

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( 56 comments — Leave a comment )
kaviiq
Aug. 16th, 2012 05:24 pm (UTC)
All of the flashback sequences were hard to read, especially Ashes'. I had a feeling that his meeting with Rissa wouldn't end well, but I still wanted him to not cave in to the Laws of Drama. His rage at the Lanteans makes much more sense now, though.

Also, Wind's background wouldn't happen to be a nod to Xandros, would it?
jo_graham
Aug. 16th, 2012 06:52 pm (UTC)
Melissa wrote Ashes' sequence. Yes, that was hard to read. I knew it had to be, and I still hoped it wasn't going to end that way.

Oh yes, Wind is very much a Wraith Xandros! :D Very, very much so! I would love to do another story with Wind and Osprey.
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tielan
Aug. 16th, 2012 09:25 pm (UTC)
Also, Wind's background wouldn't happen to be a nod to Xandros, would it?

Oh, good, I wasn't the only one thinking this! :D
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mkatlantis_13
Aug. 16th, 2012 09:38 pm (UTC)
The story and the reason for the Wraith (as told later by one of our heroes) was PERFECT! I loved the idea that the Wraith started out as misunderstood and eventually "failed" lab experiments. Lab experiments who went to the City of the Ancestors to try and learn more about the world, the universe. The idea that the Ancients were benevolent wise elders never quite sat right with me after seeing again and again how the Ancients (even when ascended!) had to impose their will on a trusting universe.

And Alabaster's treatment of her "people" as favored dogs was bang on. Loved it.

Love the name Hyperion. Was that just chosen because it sounded cool? Or did it have some deeper meaning? (or reference?)
kaviiq
Aug. 16th, 2012 09:44 pm (UTC)
Most of my knowledge comes from Age of Mythology, so take my word with a grain of salt, but I believe that Hyperion is one of the Titans, and the Titan of the Sun at that. I'm not sure how that ties in to him being a scientist, though.
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jo_graham
Aug. 17th, 2012 10:45 am (UTC)
I'm so glad you liked it! It seems like this is in character for the Ancients -- we've seen them do this over and over under different circumstances, and it makes sense that you run final medical trials on creatures that are "almost human." And in doing so created their own doom.

I'm glad you think the dogs thing works. As Rodney says, most people want good things to happen to their dogs! They care about their dogs and take them to the vet and feed them right and teach them to behave appropriately. Working dogs learn their jobs and are very valuable, and some people consider their dogs their best friends. But they're still dogs.

Hyperion was one of the Titans, the elder gods who are long gone and who are mysterious to those who live in the age of the Olympians, so it seemed an appropriate name for an Ancient.
emm1978
Aug. 16th, 2012 11:12 pm (UTC)
Wow! Secrets is without a doubt the best book of the series so far.

I could write an essay on everything I loved about this but I'll stick to the highlights:

1) Osprey's story. Tragic, horrific, inevitable.....it just made such perfect sense with regards to the Wraith and gives the Wraith a real moral voice in the story

2) Rodney and Jennifer's break up. Thank you! (I know it might be temporary, but still, thank you)

3) John's flashback. I love his mother and the sense that she knows he has a special destiny, even if at that point he couldn't see it; I'm just sorry she's not in the picture any more as I would love to have seen more of their relationship. I also love how both Teyla and Guide recognise John's ancientness, not just his gene but the way he thinks and deals with situations. Much more than O'Neill or Beckett or any of the other gene carriers when we see John's darker side I think we get an insight into the way the ancients were.

4) My hopeless shippy heart is so happy that Lorne and Cadman had a date (even if it was a poker default)

5) The Old One..........Even more than Osprey his story broke my heart, boy does he have a reason to hate the ancients!

I can't wait for the next book!

Edited at 2012-08-16 11:36 pm (UTC)
jo_graham
Aug. 20th, 2012 11:29 am (UTC)
Thank you so much! I'm delighted you enjoyed it!

1. Osprey's story -- that's my section and I'm very proud of it. It seems to me the most likely origin of the Wraith, given what we know about the Ancients, and how absolutely impossible it is for a human/insect hybrid to evolve in ten thousand years without a lot of help!

2. Poor Rodney. He's been through so much. But that was not the time! That was so not the time. For Rodney, the Commodore James Norrington Award for worst proposal ever.

3. I'm glad you like the little story with John's mother. I liked her in the flashback I did in Death Game, and I wanted to explore that relationship a little more. It seems to me that somewhere John had a good, positive strong relationship in the past, and it wasn't his father or his brother or Nancy. So, his mom. I think if his mom had still been alive when he got back from Afghanistan his life might be very different. But she would be so proud of him now. And it's from her that he gets his flexibility and empathy.

4. Well, this is (at least in my mental timeline) the first time they've been in the same place since she was directly under his command! But now she's on the Hammond, reporting to Sam instead of him, so the situation's a little different for Evan. But what about Carson? Or rather, Carson's clone? Would she want to get back together? He has no idea. So you know. Hang out and see what's up with Laura... :)

5. He does. He certainly does. That's Melissa's section and it's wrenching. But I also love Osprey through his eyes.
thesistersweb
Aug. 17th, 2012 07:56 am (UTC)
oh i love everything in this book, very detailed but a bit hard to read with ashes (?) past. but then were seeing it from his point of view so his emotion's would be raw when he talked about it.

very well done and such a shame i read it in one day.
please keep up the good work
jo_graham
Aug. 20th, 2012 11:30 am (UTC)
Thank you! The section with Ashes is hard. That's one of Melissa's, and it's really raw. But it has to be. I'm very glad you enjoyed the book!
jansma
Aug. 19th, 2012 02:11 pm (UTC)
This book has cemented my attitude regarding the Ancients as a bunch of arrogant, amoral bastards who felt nothing for anyone, least of all their 'children'. It's always been my feeling they were reprehensible, and created the Wraith for nefarious reasons. Can you imagine the havoc a Wraith with abilities equaling that of an Ancient could wreak, so it's a good job the two never got it together imo.

I loved the development of the Wraith, except for one small point i.e. humans as pets. It bothers me because I don't think Guide sees them that way, and surely, after so long, neither should Alabaster? Sure there's no telepathy, but humans are intelligent, at least as smart as Wraith, who would also not be sophisticated if they didn't have the benefit of advanced tech.
jansma
Aug. 19th, 2012 02:23 pm (UTC)
(Comment in two parts because LJ spazzed out on me... )

Maybe some will continue to view humans as mere templates from which their superior race was evolved, but to do so would affect any alliance, now or in the future. They are going to have to get past their prejudice, just as the other humans of Pegasus will have to. After all, there's no reason why, with the retrovirus, both species couldn't find common ground – if you'll pardon the term.

Btw, do I see foreshadowing with Torren and Darling?

Great stuff, great read, thank you.
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jo_graham
Aug. 20th, 2012 11:53 am (UTC)
I think the pets part is also a function of the short life span of humans relative to Wraith. I mean, how attached are you going to get to a hamster who may live two years compared to your eighty? Its entire life plays out in what to you is such a short time.
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jarodrussell
Aug. 19th, 2012 07:34 pm (UTC)
I kind of figured Rodney and Jennifer breaking up was coming, but it still kind of stings actually seeing it. Here's hoping The Inheritors has a surprise twist.
jo_graham
Aug. 20th, 2012 11:57 am (UTC)
That was really, really not the moment to propose! I don't think it would have gone so badly had Rodney picked a better time. And of course he's hurt and if she says no, he's moving out. Which she didn't ask him to. But of course he's hurt. And I don't think Jennifer really understands how messed up he is, having never been there herself the way John has. Fortunately, Rodney has good friends to lean on through this.
tielan
Aug. 19th, 2012 09:59 pm (UTC)
There is so much more in here that I missed while reading the drafts; it's a pleasure to find the bits that I didn't read, and to re-read the bits that I saw in the draft.

I haven't reached the Old One's story yet, but Osprey's story is a huge kick in the gut. And Teyla waking and having to deal with her memories and John and everything - OH!

I've been too busy and too tired to do more than read a few chapters a night lately, but I'm still enjoying it like a crazy crazy thing!
jo_graham
Aug. 20th, 2012 11:58 am (UTC)
I'm so glad you like all the new bits!

Osprey's story is one of the best things I've ever done, I think. Absolutely. And Teyla -- it's just John, not some guy ten thousand years ago, but it's hard not to recoil. (Though in terms of personality, John is much more like Wind....)
krazyk8ie
Aug. 20th, 2012 02:15 pm (UTC)
first time
I wish to thank you (and co-writers, editors, advance readers, etc.) for the SGA novels, particularly these five with one more to come (any hope for more???) SGA led me to this site, which led me to your other books ... thank you!

I thought Osprey's story was beautifully told, to me it was poetical without resorting to hyperbole.

The Old One's anger and hatred is a perfect foil to Ronon's anger and hatred. I hope Ronon find's his own "door into summer." The friendship of John and Ronon has never been made clearer than the scene on the cliffs overlooking the sea!

"Kairos knew" ... Osprey's acknowledgement of his wanting to know everything the Ancestors had to teach and the taste the knowledge had cost him, to me, was so well written ... the futility and the loss so clear in so few words. Bravo!

Kairos/Ashes returning to Rissa was hopeful, tragic and heart-breaking. Two wraith feeding on the women they love/loved is an excellent plot-line to the complexities of the Pegasus Galaxy. I am sure we will know what happens with Rodney, but will we ever find out what happened to Ashes? (OMGosh, just re-read last chapter ... Ashes is the Old One?)

Will we ever know the past/future relationship of Radek and William? Will we ever know what William is doing with the datacrystals and other crytals he scavenged from Sateda?

Regretfully, a squirming-in-my-chair-but-stern criticism. My husband achieved the rank of Chief Master Sergeant in his 20th year of his 26 year career in the Air Force. Walter Harriman should be afforded the respect his rank deserves. CMSgt Harriman or Chief Harriman should never be referenced as "Sgt/Sergeant Harriman."

Eagerly anticipating The Inheritors!
jo_graham
Sep. 1st, 2012 10:43 am (UTC)
Re: first time
Thank you so very much! We love doing the Stargate books, and I'm delighted that you found my other books and liked them! Thank you!

The scene with John and Ronon on the sea cliff is mine, and I hope with John that Ronon does find his door into summer. It's so easy to become the thing you hate, to be consumed with revenge and wrong. John can't really give him anything there except that he doesn't want Ronon to become that guy. And maybe that's enough.

Ashes is indeed the Old One! He's the counter example, a life consumed by bitterness for the (very real) wrongs inflicted upon him, until he becomes as monstrous as his tormentors. Which to give Rodney all credit, is not Rodney's temptation. He's not angry that way.

There would be far more about the relationship between Radek and William if we could tell it! Needless to say there are scenes that have been cut in edits. :(

Thank you for the heads up on that! I appreciate it! I hate to make mistakes.

Jo
Rosanna Dacanay
Aug. 26th, 2012 11:16 am (UTC)
Secrets
OK. I zipped through Secrets...I could not put the book down! (Neglected all my chores). So, my heart leapt when the healer turned out to be Alabaster. I thought it was cute when Torren and Darling were playing quietly to find out that they were communicating all the time! (Teyla being speechless). I look at Rodney in a different light now. And...Osprey's story is wonderful. November is too far away for the next book!!
jo_graham
Sep. 1st, 2012 10:49 am (UTC)
Re: Secrets
I'm so glad you liked it! Thank you! And I'm truly glad you liked Osprey's story.
hiveshipmist
Sep. 1st, 2012 07:15 pm (UTC)
My paperback arrived yesterday and I finished reading it today. :) I haven't seen anyone ask this yet: What are the 6 symbols of truce (on page 202)?
jo_graham
Sep. 3rd, 2012 01:43 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you liked it!

My thinking was that since each hive is independent, or at least part of small alliances historically, it has often been necessary for hives to meet and make treaties. Sometimes this is on neutral ground, like the worshippers' world we saw in The Lost, and sometimes it's on a ship. When a diplomatic party is coming aboard, there are symbolic gestures that make it clear that this is ritually neutral ground, that make this a place between like a neutral world even if it's actually a room on someone's ship. So the six symbols of truce are the things that make this "a neutral world" rather than a reception room!
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hiveshipmist
Sep. 1st, 2012 07:29 pm (UTC)
Another question: Why does Jennifer think of and fear the Classical pomegranate seed story? Does she fear she will want to become a worshipper, to be some sort of Persephone, because she has been fed on 2x?
jo_graham
Sep. 3rd, 2012 01:45 pm (UTC)
I think Jennifer is very much a Persephone archetype, young Persephone, the maiden undescended. And, like many young Persephones, she both fears and craves the Descent. It's scary and it's attractive at the same time. What would it be like to go further into this world? It's frightening and yet she's interested, she's fascinated. She keeps asking questions, keeps trying to learn more about the Wraith. Jennifer wants to know. And that's dangerous.
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