I'm very excited for this post! This is by far one of my favorite series set in the Tortall-verse. All of the characters are well executed and the setting is gorgeous. There's no need for a long introduction - here's our discussion on Tamora Pierce's Tricksters' Duology.
Who was your favorite character?
Liz: I loved the darklings; they were far and away my favorite characters from the series.I loved the rampant humor they had, the way the characters interacted with them, it was all fabulous.
Brittany: Appearances by the Graveyard Hag always make me smile. I know she’s an avatar of death, but it’s a good time when she’s around.
How did you experience the book? Were you immediately drawn into the story--or did it take you a while?
Liz: It did take me a little bit to be drawn into the story. I kept looking for Alanna and the characters from other series to appear and rescue Ally. I was a little disappointed at first just to read about Ally for so long, but then Ally grew on me, and other fantastic characters started showing up with this big conspiracy and suddenly I couldn’t get enough.
Brittany: The first time I read the story, I knew nothing about it. I also expected to see more of the old crew, but really enjoyed that the story became just about Aly and the island cast, which is very different from the Tortall cast.
Liz: At times, most definitely. There were a few moments where I almost believed her to be too smart or have her wits too much about her for a young lady who was trained but didn’t come across as having a lot of first hand experience. However, she was cautious when appropriate which kind of balanced the overall affect of her character to me.
Brittany: She’s much more like her dad than her mom, so it was interesting to have that kind of character (cunning instead of strong, sassy instead of… not sassy) in a female character. Aly is very good at planning, but I would have loved to see more of the plans go off with hitches. She seem too perfect at times.
Who in this book would you most like to meet? What would you ask—or say?
Liz: Kyprioth, the trickster. I would just like to try and hold a conversation with him or an hour just to see what would happen. I think it would be interesting just to see more of how his mind works.
Consider the ending. Did you expect it or were you surprised? If you could rewrite the ending, would you? In other words, did you find the ending satisfying? Why or why not.
Liz: I didn’t find the ending satisfying because I wanted more to the story. I wanted to see the exploits of Aly as the spymaster and what the isles become after everything had somewhat settled down. When the series ended, I felt like the story hadn’t really ended; there was much to be said and done.
Brittany: I would also love to see more from this area of the world. There’s a short story involving Aly and Nawat in Tortall and Other Lands, so that does bring a little closure to the story. It’s not enough, though. I want to know more about Dove’s reign as queen!
If you were to talk with the author, what would you want to know?
Liz: Could you write more books about the Isles? Ehhh???