The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon // Third Discussion

Wow, I think we’ve hit the major meaty parts of this book. This third section of the book was probably the most packed with a ton of reveals, a ton of twists and turns, and a lot of stuff going on at once. Whew, it’s time to unpack this.

As stated before, this post is filled with a ton of spoilers, so make sure to have read this section (pgs. 406-610) before reading this blog post. And as always, you’re more than welcome to react to my thoughts so far, answer the questions, or comment with your own personal thoughts and reactions. This is the laid back read along, so no rules to play by.

Let’s get into it!

I’ve got a lot to say about this section because this is probably the part that made me like this book a little less. Let’s rattle off my completely incoherent thoughts about what happened:

I loved the journey to find the Lady in the Woods. I wasn’t sure what to expect with this story, but I didn’t expect it to be the biggest reveal in the entire book. There was heavy mention of the magic in this book and how it works and how it’s connect to the orange tree. OMG, I was living for this part. Finding out about the siden (coming from the earth and the magic that exists in the orange tree) vs the serren that comes from the stars. I love a story that incorporates ideas like earth and stars and natural magics that exist in the world. It also made a ton of sense and fit perfectly with the Nameless One and his existence and the existence of things like Ascalon.

The jewels were probably the most interesting part to come out of that story. I loved that there’s these ancient artifacts that Ead and the gang need to find in order to stop the Nameless One. However, I wasn’t happy with how easily everything sort of came together.

For example, Ascalon (the sword that was made by Kalyba to fight The Nameless One) has been lost for over a thousand years. But lo and behold, it just happened to be in Loth’s family’s backyard in some small underground spot that no one would find. I don’t know, that seemed so bogus that the sword was so easily found. It was missing for a thousand years. A THOUSAND YEARS. I thought there would be some journey to Komoridu to find that and the jewel.

But Komoridu, let’s talk about that. I loved that Ead hears the story about Komoridu and how the jewel is probably there under one of the magical trees. And then you hear Niclays deciphering the last piece of info that Jannart shares with him and it turns out to be the missing map leading to Komoridu! I hope that this somehow plays out in the final 200 pages of the book because their connection is so close, but still so far.

But then the whole jewels story is kind of thrown out for me. One, because Ead steals the jewel from the current Prioress’s possession and the other jewel was somehow inside Tane. Both of these reveals were shocking, but it was kind of a let down. I thought there would be this great journey to Komoridu, but now I feel like that’s not going to happen. I hope it does. We still have 200 pages of book left.

I loved Ead in the Priory. I felt like she was a different person there and even Loth mentions how much she glowed after eating the fruit than how she looked when she was in Inys. But geez, the power system there is just as messy as it is in Inys. Gotta love a story where everywhere you go there’s a misuse of power and everyone struggles. LOL.

When Ead goes back to Inys and talks to Sabran about what’s happening and how Igrain is behind the attacks on her and Aubrecht. Whoa, I didn’t see Igrain being the culprit in all this. And then again, she quickly admits to doing it, imprisoned, and then they already start the journey to fix all the things she did? Why is everything happening so quickly? I thought Igrain would put up a much bigger fight especially since she’s all about pomp and circumstance and having the right queen on the throne and I’m pretty sure I’ve read more villains who were relentless about power and claiming it. I’m just so surprised this moved so quickly.

But then Sabran and Ead’s relationship and how that escalates. We all knew there was a little something between them, but then they spend the night together and wow. I love them as a power couple and I really hope that works out for them. Of course it will take a little bit of work because all of their beliefs are usurped when Ead finds out about Kalyba’s connection to all of this.

Finally, the biggest reveal of the entire story was right at the end of this section. Kalyba is actually Sabran’s family! The whole story with Galian and Kalyba was interesting, but then it gets morally grey when Kalyba and Galian have sex and produce the first queen of Inys. IDK, but raising someone from a child and then having sex with them feels weird. Holy cow that reveal was shocking. It totally destroys the religion that was created. It actually throws off any belief that the Berethenet line is holding The Nameless One back from returning. Honestly, this reveal is the most twisty thing I’ve ever read!

So far at this point in the book, the entire thing feels messy. There’s so many weird twists and turns and a lot of threads that need to come back together. Our entire knowledge of this world is completely thrown or at least it is for me. No questions in this part of the discussion because there’s just so much to talk about so share what you like!

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