The Ill-Made Mute

10Fev11

Note: Green text means it was written by Jen7waters. Orange means Quigui. Black means common to the both of us (because we’re both mourning some great character.)

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A joint review book commentary by Quigui of Spoilers and Nuts and Jen7waters of Cuidado com o Dálmata. We decided to make this review together because a) it would be fun; b) we suffered through this book together and c) I have been recently bitten by a dog, and can join Jen in her warning (and thus be allowed a post in her blog) to beware of the dog (not a Dalmatian in my case, but a tiny, tiny dog that the only thing that he managed to do was to rip my last pair of stockings. Tiny little bastard.) Told’ya, but you never listen. BTW, hello everyone! *Jen waves her hand*

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Author: Cecilia Dart-Thornton

Publisher: Warner Books (2002; 1st ed. 2001)

Pages: 554

Synopsis: In a world where creatures of legend haunt the lands of men, and to be caught outside after dark means almost certain death, the inhabitants of Isse Tower are amazed when a mute, starving foundling is discovered outside their gates. With no recollection of her name or past, the girl soon realizes that her only hope of happiness lies in distant Caermalor, where a wise woman might be able to restore her memories. To get there, Imrhien must survive a wilderness of endless danger. Lost and pursued by unhuman wights, Imrhien is saved by Thorn, a mysterious, handsome ranger who becomes her protector-and the object of her hopeless love. But unknown to them, a dark force summons the Unseelie, and malignant hordes amass in the night.

Opinion:

(The spoiler free version)

A book about a foundling that can’t talk and is ugly as hell (therefore being ill-made and mute), that goes on a road trip to cure her disease. A very long and boring book, with one character that is awesome and doesn’t appear as much as he should. Unless you are really curious about it, skip it. If you are curious, proceed with care and be prepared to be bored out of your wits. I have nothing to add. Humph.


(The spoiler version: Beware, Here be Dragons. And Spoilers. And Ranting. And Snark. And we’re sorry. No dogs and nuts in sight, though.)

In a place with a very tall tower everyone dislikes a mute and very ugly foundling. Lots of boring stuff happens. (Really, if one can get to chapter 4, can read the whole book, otherwise is better to drop it.) It is boring, but more than that: it’s descriptive. To the point of telling you about every single piece of food on the table! Enumeration is really this author’s strong point.

He/she/it goes away/flees (I don’t know. Quigui explains: She finds out by overhearing some people talk that she can find a cure for her ailment on the Big City, so she runs to the city. Ooooh, okay, thank you, quigui. That helped a lot, still boring though) and meets Sianadh a.k.a. The Best Character of The Book Who Didn’t Deserve To Die-You S*** Cecilia Dart-Thornton (breathe, Jen, breathe). *Jen cries* *Quigui gives Jen an handkerchief* *Jen blows her nose with it – may I keep it?* *Please do. I have no business with your snot.*

Anyway…he gives him/her a name and teaches him/her sign language. They travel a lot and find a treasure. A lot of boring stuff happens again (and there is a minor rip-off of The Lord of the Rings, sans hobbits, ponies, and the word Friend as password, but close enough to make me cringe), although Sianadh lightens up things being The Best Character of The Book Who Didn’t Deserve To Die-You S*** Cecilia Dart-Thornton. BTW, was there any point to the chess-but-not-chess game? Mmm…don’t think so. Because there is so much time devoted to our main character learning to play the game, and then playing the game, but at the end, all she had to do was press the right button. No, wait, I remember now…it was to BORE US JUST A LITTLE BIT MORE. Ooooh, I see. Cecilia: Mission Accomplished! With A+ grade (O_O).
They reach Sianadh’s home and everyone dislikes the foundling there too. Then, all of a sudden, without a good or proper reason, Sianadh DIES (NOOO) and the story loses all its interest immediately. (And I still believe that he is alive: think about it, we only know he is dead because a guy that was with him told another guy that wasn’t there, that in turn told our main character that Sianadh is no more. Without a body I don’t believe it. You’re in a place called Denial. I’m afraid. And I’m loving it here! I understand…you have to be…after all you still have 2 books in this series to read WITHOUT SIANADH…that’s tough business.)
Another roadtrip starts, and it goes horribly wrong, with more people dying, but none that really matter (because after Sianadh, no-one does). He/she/it (and by this time we should really not being bothered with spoilers and say it is indeed a She) travels with Sianadh’s nephew, who is a very poor replacement. They travel, they despair, they travel a bit more. Until…
He/she/it finds herself alone again until a tall, dark, handsome, mysterious guy shows up and makes her feel butterflies in the stomach. (HOW COULD YOU, IMRHIEN!? SIANADH WAS THE MAN!) Who, by the way, dyes his hair (which means I’m secretly hoping he turns out to be either a) Sianadh or b) a wight and thus a very unsuitable match). They travel together for a while, until he snatches (without warning, idiot) 3 hairs from her scalp to make himself a fancy ring, kisses her ugly face, and goes away. At this moment the only thing I wanted was to finish the book, but this part did get a reaction out of me: “WTH? Is that any way to treat a lady? And she still likes you?”
She finds the only person who can help her get her uncursed/whatever face back.
She becomes pretty. She can talk.
The end.

I have no interest whatsoever in knowing what happens in the next books of this series. I am still a bit curious, namely because of the whole “HE IS NOT DEAD” state of mind I’m in, and also because I already have the other 2 books and would feel like a twat if I just relisted them on Bookmooch without reading. But on the positive side, they are smaller than the first one. I’ll be pointing my finger at you the whole time, saying AH-AH! YOU’RE READING THE OTHER 2 BOOKS! And I’ll be telling you the entire time that Sianadh is still alive and kinky kicking. Mwahahahah! No way, he’s D-E-A-D. No Body = Not Dead! Keep dreaming, my friend 😦
Rating:
before Sianadh appears: X( – 1.5/5
while Sianadh appears =D – 5/5
after Sianadh disappears BUT before Thorn appears – 😥 1/5
after Thorn appears – x_x 0/5
Overall = 1.875/5 (a 3 or a 4 in my rating method)

P.S.: YOU S*** CECILIA!!! Yep, you do. Also, you should change your name. Your not worthy of either the name Cecilia or Thornton. You can keep the Dart (and throw it at Thorn).


Goodreads ǀ  The Book Depository UK ǀ The Book Depository.com


19 Responses to “The Ill-Made Mute”

  1. 1 p7

    OMG, this sounds awful. Actually, this sounds a lot like my reading of “The Swan Maiden” by Jules Watson. POSSIBLE SPOILER AHEAD Over-description? Check! Of the most decent characters in the book dying? Check! (Altough I can’t be 100% sure about this one. I didn’t finish the book, but I came pretty close to it. It’s just that I knew where it was heading and I just was interested in reading it anymore.) A very disappointing female protagonist? Check!

    I’m sorry for the rant. I guess now you know how I felt after reading “The Swan Maiden”. At least you finished this one. 😛 And got a literary crush. 😀

    And I just love that this was written by the two of you. 😉

    • Oh…tell me about it! You know I had The Swan maiden in my wishlist until I heard someone important dies in it (I think it’s the hero…? right?) – not on my wishlist anymore O_O

      That’s okay, we are allowed to rant when a book disappoints us!

      Thank you, we had a lot of fun doing it xD

      • 3 p7

        I think it’s the hero.

        POSSIBLE SPOILER AHEAD (I’ll just sum up the story.) The girl is to be married to the local king, but she doesn’t want to and runs away with the hero. The king gets very mad and sends people to chase them away, they roam around and then the king changes his mind and tries to make peace with them. And then the king changes his mind again and tries to kill them. I stopped reading here but I peeked ahead. The hero dies. (END OF THE STORY’S SUM UP)

        At this point I got so frustrated with the story and the author’s writing that I had to stop. I was reading 400 pages books in 2 days in last summer, but this book took me a week just to read 500 pages. I don’t what happened, maybe it just wasn’t the right time for me to read this one. :/

      • “The hero dies.” That’s my number one fear when I pick up a book. O_O I just get all emotional…and depressed…and just want to curl up in a dark corner to cry 😥

      • 5 p7

        That’s pretty much what happened to me. I was expecting a different story and got really depressed and annoyed at it. :/

  2. I guess I’m a masochist but reviews like this makes me want to read the book just to get a laugh! Even if in the process I would be bored to death! 😀

    • For your sake my friend, don’t do it! xD
      It’s a really boring book. Sianadh was the only good thing in it. 😦

  3. 8 quigui

    We were really mean. We should do this again! 😀

    • LOL, I’ve no doubt that we will. We will. xD

      • 10 p7

        How about you do a joint review for a book you actually liked this time? 😛 Might be funny. 😀

      • Great idea! We can’t keep thrashing books like this everytime we make a joint review, we need to show some love to a book and author 😀

      • 12 quigui

        Seems like a good idea. You haven’t reviewed Jane Eyre yet. Since I’m reading it, it might be an option 🙂

      • Funny, I’m reviewing “Jane” like..right now, and keep thinking I need to review “Jane Eyre”. It’s pretty shameful that I haven’t done it before. We have to negotiate this. :p

  4. 14 slayra

    This one sounds pretty fun… or maybe it’s just your snarky and (thankfully) condensed version of it. Thanks for the warning!

    WTH, a random guy runs off with her hair to make a ring (a ring, WHA?)? That’s creepy almost up there with Edward watching Bella sleep in her room. :p UGH.

    Oh no, The Swan Maiden is bad? Darn, I have the portuguese translation (which means it cost a LOT, grrrr) here to read. Awww.

    • Oh no, it’s no fun slayra (only Sianadh had a sense of humor really). O_O

      Yep, the guy (Thorn) takes 3 of her hairs to make a ring. I have no idea how that thing holds on, maybe she has superman-kind-of-hair (strong as steel!)

      *Pat-pat* There, there, you can do it, you can read The Swan Maiden. If you have the book already (and the portugu€s€ edition) there’s no turning back. Just take a deep breath and dive in. *.*

      • 16 slayra

        Lol, that’s why I prefer your snarky, condensed version… thanks to you I don’t have to read the book anymore, I know what it’s about and I had fun reading your… synopse? 😀

        Oh, I just thought of the new Rapunzel (Entranced? I don’t remember the title) movie when I read your comment… I don’t know if you’ve watched it yet, but she’s always using her hair as a rope to pull stuff and move around and tie up guys. Maybe the girl in this book has smooth, goldy locks? Naah. O_O

        I only bought it because everyone was saying it was like Juliet Marilier! And… and since editors and book labels in Portugal are so picky (ony teh “good” books may be published) I thought she had some talent. At least some. Jules, you’ll be hearing from me. And Bertrand that book is damn heavy! O_O

      • 17 p7

        Slayra, at least try to read the book, you might like it. 😉 (Please don’t read the story’s sum up I did up here in the comments.) Maybe if go into reading this one with less expectations than I had, you’ll be able to enjoy it more.

        I had heard about the comparisons with Juliet Marillier, and the setting is pretty Juliet-like, however Jules’ writing is more descriptive and the story is less “magical à lá Juliet”.

        Just don’t go into reading expecting “Juliet Marillier” and maybe you’ll be okay. 😉 And don’t focus on how much the book cost. xD

      • Tangled!! It’s one of my favourite movies ever!xD It’s so cute. And Flynn Rider is my cartoon crush. *teehee* Well if Imrhien (the mute girl in the book) has hair as strong as Rapunzel’s, then a ring made of it will hold for sure. Still, it was domestic violence. And Thorn (the guy) is still a creep. He probably took the hair to make a voodoo doll of something.

        Btw, I have to confess something…I wanted to read this book because it’s recommended on the Daughter of the Forest Library Thing page. (And quigui too). There are a few similarities in the story (mute-cursed girl travels with a stranger, who takes her to his home, blablabla), but it was worthless. It’s a waste of time to try to find something similiar to Juliet’s books. I have learned my lesson. xD


  1. 1 Spoilers and Nuts: The Ill-Made Mute by Cecilia Dart-Thornton

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