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Okay... (spoilers, obviously, and yes it is gruesome). Legolas Send a noteboard - 01/07/2010 12:30:28 PM
What does it mean? I haven't read the series beyond the first book and part of the second, so I'm curious. It seems to have caused a few readers to quit the series.

In the earlier parts of the book dealing with the Barghast (a tribal warrior nation), various mentions are made of the "hobbling" custom. It consists of hacking off the toes, or even close to half the foot, from both feet of a woman, and then cauterizing the wounds. The victim is then obviously barely able to walk anymore, and after this process is considered the lowest of the low in the camp. She is gang raped and thereafter expected to have sex with any "man, woman or campdog" (one would hope the last part isn't meant literally) who wants to - which evidently isn't considered adultery or anything of the sort.

True to the old Chekhov adage of having to fire the gun in the third act if you've shown it in the first, Erikson then proceeds to have this happen to one of his characters, Hetan. Who wasn't exactly a major character, but among the better and more interesting characters at least. After the hobbling itself and the gang rape, she is depicted as dead inside and barely worth saving anymore (as her brother is trying to do), which only adds insult to injury. As it happens, the saving fails in any case, and she dies. Exit Hetan.

So yeah, one can see why people would give up the series in disgust... even by Erikson's standards, Hetan's end is particularly brutal.
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Erikson's Dust of Dreams (no real spoilers) - 01/07/2010 12:21:07 AM 5493 Views
Excellent review. Strengthens my resolve to reread at least part of TtH before starting. Thanks. *NM* - 01/07/2010 02:08:40 AM 1082 Views
You don't need to reread TtH, actually. Reaper's Gale is much more relevant. - 01/07/2010 09:44:43 AM 1462 Views
But I didn't like Reaper's Gale. *NM* - 02/07/2010 02:30:01 AM 821 Views
I feel your pain, then. *NM* - 02/07/2010 09:46:24 AM 802 Views
Good review, thanks! *major spoilers* - 01/07/2010 05:34:59 AM 1798 Views
What enraged me was the blatantly sexist treatment of... (Spoilers!) - 01/07/2010 06:09:21 AM 2077 Views
Yes, that was the main thing I was getting at with the "strong stomach" comment. - 01/07/2010 09:58:14 AM 2006 Views
The thing is... - 01/07/2010 04:51:22 PM 1583 Views
I keep hearing about this 'Hobbling of Hetan'. - 01/07/2010 12:16:39 PM 2340 Views
Okay... (spoilers, obviously, and yes it is gruesome). - 01/07/2010 12:30:28 PM 1843 Views
OK I see. *edited for spelling* - 01/07/2010 12:41:16 PM 1534 Views
Re: OK I see. - 01/07/2010 12:52:27 PM 1603 Views
Re: OK I see. - 01/07/2010 01:09:30 PM 1544 Views
Maybe your thesis is just a little too simple, then. - 01/07/2010 01:20:01 PM 1613 Views
It's not really a thesis statement. - 01/07/2010 01:33:03 PM 1542 Views
I knew I was forgetting something... - 01/07/2010 04:57:16 PM 1558 Views
Yeah, agreed. - 02/07/2010 09:50:57 AM 1558 Views
It'll be re-reading that starting in the next couple of days - 01/07/2010 10:11:42 AM 1427 Views
Waiting for Part Two - 28/07/2010 02:47:00 AM 1529 Views

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