Jump to content
Objectivism Online Forum
Sign in to follow this  
intellectualammo

Sparrowhawk: Book One

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

Caution there are spoilers in this...and don't spoil it for me either, since I am only just over 200 pages in...

I am not sure I understand two comments that Redmagne makes in Book One of the Sparrowhawk series by Edward Cline.

As those who have read it may know, he had published his novel titled Hyperborea, and the first comment he made I think I understand somewhat better than a second comment he makes later. His novel was doing well, and went into a second edition printing, and was working on a third, and then he says to Skelly that "the best news of all, it has been paid the supreme compliment - it has been pirated!" (p.158 hardcover ed.) When I read that, my take was that perhaps he was delighted that they couldn't make enough editions fast enough for the demand of the book, and so it was being pirated? I'm not convinced I understand that comment correctly, so does anyone care to comment on what they think that that means?

The second comment he made about his novel, was when his publisher didn't want to press a third edition of Hyperborea. He says, "'Thank God for pirates!'" (p.208 hardcover ed). My take on that is that, if others weren't pressing this novel illegally, it wouldn't "see the light of day" as he had said about his novel in the cave, before it was first published, which seems to be much more important to him, rather than not being able to get any of the money from those sales, just getting his novel out there. And again, I am not totally convinced I understand that right, so if anyone would care to comment, do so.

This novel is what I had thought that it was going to be when I had started reading the first few page of it: Romantic Realism in the historical fiction genre, and I have never read anything of the like before, a real page turner, and wished I would have read it sooner. I would have missed out on some amazing characters, like Frake, Redmagne, Skelly, Miss Morley... oh man! not to mention the way Cline pulls you into an action scene, or the way he says things... there are some really nice quotes, as well as passages in this novel. Great dialogue too! I was blown away at how well written the dialogue and scene was between Redmagne and Miss Morley when they were traveling!

How many of you have read this novel and loved it? <-- Is that even a question? One seemingly follows from the other... :confused:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
... "the best news of all, it has been paid the supreme compliment - it has been pirated!" ... so does anyone care to comment on what they think that that means?
They say imitation is a form of flattery. Pirates don't waste their time copying books that have no prospects. So, as much as one might be hurt by someone pirating your book, yet, it normally means it's in demand. Edited by softwareNerd

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First, I love this series. I'm just about finished with Sparrowhawk 2: Hugh Kenrick. The heroes are affirmable, the historical period is one of the most fascinating (to me, at least) and the action and dialogue keep me on my seat. I find myself laughing a great deal too, for the right reasons.

Like Snerd said, it's because of the prospects. Since it's considered a value in society, the pirates are willing to invest the time to pirate it. It's a great compliment in Redmagne's mind.

I gathered that Redmagne's value rested in the fact that people found his book to be of great interest and value, and if another printing was not possible, at least there's pirates out there supplying the people with this great work of art!

For many artists, money is not the goal. In this context and period of history, it was not possible for Redmagne to attain the wealth he may have demanded for such a piece, without being tried for sedition and blasphemy, among other things. He knew this, which is why he used the nom de plume. Besides that, creating a piece of art that is of immense value to oneself and shared by others is even more rewarding.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
First, I love this series.

:)

I'm just about finished with Sparrowhawk 2: Hugh Kenrick. The heroes are affirmable, the historical period is one of the most fascinating (to me, at least) and the action and dialogue keep me on my seat. I find myself laughing a great deal too, for the right reasons.

Oh, that's so wonderful to hear! I'm on the lookout for Book 2, but they are all checked out or in transit at the libraries around my area. I might order them, but first, does anyone know if there is a boxset of these books? or one that is planned?

Like Snerd said, it's because of the prospects. Since it's considered a value in society, the pirates are willing to invest the time to pirate it. It's a great compliment in Redmagne's mind.

I gathered that Redmagne's value rested in the fact that people found his book to be of great interest and value, and if another printing was not possible, at least there's pirates out there supplying the people with this great work of art!

Alright! Thanks, West! I was understanding more than I had myself convinced that I was understanding afterall.

For many artists, money is not the goal.

Yes, and in my writing specifically, money is more like a side effect of my goal, which is done so creatively in my novoulette, and hard to explain without it's context.

Besides that, creating a piece of art that is of immense value to oneself and shared by others is even more rewarding.

Yes, that is definitely in line with my take on Redmagne's comment, that it seemed getting his novel out there, was more important, or rewarding as you say, then the money would ever have been from those novels.

And sNerd used the same word I did "demand". For a writer to see their words in demand, at least a writer like Redmagne, is a hell of a lot more important to them, than seeing the currency. That demand was concretized more for Redmagne in the form of pirated copies, than in those first two editions of Hyperborea, with a third edition of it pending.

I thank both of you for your helpful comments.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Caution there are spoilers in this...and don't spoil it for me either, since I am only just over 200 pages in...

Now, I'm just under 300 in, so the cautions still apply both ways.

Another question: Anyone know what this looks like exactly?:

"It's a Customs jack, Major, with His Majesty's arms removed by white paint."

It was a flag hung over one of the entrances to a cave in the Skelly hideout, and I can't even begin to imagine what it looks like, because I don't know what the "Customs jack" looked like.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Maybe the crown counts as "kings arms", and there was a white circle there. But, maybe it was a different flag altogether. Perhaps you could ask Mr. Cline.

Thanks, sNerd. I didn't see your reply until now. I found these too. I would email him, if his website was there (edwardcline.com), but unfortunately it is not. It's still unclear what "His Majesty's arms" means so... If there is any way that you can think or know of, to contact Cline, please let me know. I really what to see this flag!! At least I have more of an idea of what it may look like.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks, sNerd. I didn't see your reply until now. I found these too. I would email him, if his website was there (edwardcline.com), but unfortunately it is not. It's still unclear what "His Majesty's arms" means so... If there is any way that you can think or know of, to contact Cline, please let me know. I really what to see this flag!! At least I have more of an idea of what it may look like.

Ed Cline blogs along with Nick Provenzo at Rule of Reason.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Maybe the crown counts as "kings arms", and there was a white circle there. But, maybe it was a different flag altogether. Perhaps you could ask Mr. Cline.

Indeed, I took the opportunity to do just that, hoping that it wasn't a frivelous question to ask him, and I gather that it looks much like this Cusoms jack below, but the crown might have looked more like yours in your image sNerd, but "His Majesty's arms" was a crown nonetheless, as you had mentioned it might have meant. I tried to use white paint on it, but I can't edit the image on my laptop, but now I know what it looked liked:

gb~crvic.gif

In the novel it said that the arms was "removed by white paint". Not sure if that would be circular as you had mentioned, sNerd, or what, but what I know now's good enough for me :thumbsup: . Thanks to Mr. Cline! Thank you for providing your email address here and answering my question. Just reaffirms why I value this forum as much as I do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
How many of you have read this novel and loved it?

i stayed up all night last night and read the last 200 pages... I LOVED ITTTTTT

Cline is my favorite author, second to Rand. Finally I have found a book with affirmable, heroic characters (and my ability to enjoy them is not stunted by some sort of moral grayness on the characters part). The philosophy is united: not overwhelming, but always there. And talk about EXCITING! wowowow, I am so so excited to read the rest of the series!

I loved S1:JF, and am voraciously digging into S2:HK

:thumbsup:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Cline is my favorite author, second to Rand. Finally I have found a book with affirmable, heroic characters (and my ability to enjoy them is not stunted by some sort of moral grayness on the characters part). The philosophy is united: not overwhelming, but always there.

That is a very good point that needs emphasized. That's the beauty of this novel - showing the practical side of our kind of morality in action, our philosophy applied to reality; the choices these characters make reflect our kind of philosophy, all of this set in a particular historical period, through a plot that's primarily driven forward by these heroic characters choices, rather than being all didactic or way too explicit about the philosophy itself.

I loved S1:JF, and am voraciously digging into S2:HK

:D

Already! You'll be working your way through the series before I will. My library only had Book 1 and I have to order (that one) and the rest. In the mean time I am working my way through Kay Nolte Smith novels, which her characters are affirmable (I like how you and West say that, in the sense that you do) to me, at least the one that I had read, and am reading. Cline uses words I had to look up (or didn't stop to look up, because my eyes wouldn't let me leave his lines :thumbsup: ) but Smith's don't (as far as I have read). Hers are so simple, yet complex by the conflicts and plot and not to mention her great characterization. She's fantastic, but Cline...Cline IS romantic realism in historical fiction par excellence.

I'm glad there is a definite buzz about his series here. There should be. People here always search in literature for good writers to read after having read Ayn Rand, and they are very hard to find, especially and particualrly ones that are very consonant with the philosophy itself. Here's some help. Read Cline.

Edited by intellectualammo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That is a very good point that needs emphasized. That's the beauty of this novel - showing the practical side of our kind of morality in action, our philosophy applied to reality; the choices these characters make reflect our kind of philosophy through a plot that's primarily driven forward by these heroic characters choices, rather than being all didactic or way too explicit about the philosophy itself.

i completely agree! Rand's works occasionally turn off readers because of their heavy-handedness with the philosophical speeches. Cline does not use such devices, but still delivers a philosophically sound novel in the same vein, with the same merit and Romanticism.

Already! You'll be working your way through the series before I will.

West read 1 before I did, and I bought him 2 (used) for Xmas. We have found used (hardback) copies of 2, 3 and 4 all for under 7 dollars. THAT is certainly a great deal for books that deserve a space in our library, forever!

Cline...Cline IS romantic realism in historical fiction par excellence.

I'm glad there is a definite buzz about his series here. There should be. People here always search in literature for good writers to read after having read Ayn Rand, and they are very hard to find, especially and particualrly ones that are very consonant with the philosophy itself. Here's some help. Read Cline.

I agree whole-heartedly. Many Oists read Hugo, Quo Vadis, etc because AR mentions them in her writings, but Cline's fiction fulfills me in a way those other writers cannot. Cline is the REAL THING!! NO malevolent universe, NO lapse in philosophic unity, NO mind-body dichotomy in the heroes... I just wish I had read it sooner

I cannot recommend it enough!!!!!!!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I agree whole-heartedly. Many Oists read Hugo, Quo Vadis, etc because AR mentions them in her writings, but Cline's fiction fulfills me in a way those other writers cannot.

Interesting comment. I think that is why I am so fond of Kay Nolte Smith. So far her novels are consonant, for the most part, with Objectivism (she having played Karen in a production of Rand's Night of January 16th, a student of NBI, mentioned in both Branden's books et al, and has been called an Objectivist writer) she fulfills what I was looking for in a novel right now, which I don't get with AR or Cline. I still have yet to find a way to describe what exactly it is. It's too bad I found these so late, for she has no longer been with us for almost a dozen years or so, but does live on in a way through her novels, but not in the same way I will with my novoul, when I pass, hence the portmanteau, but enough, more about Cline!! :thumbsup:

Cline is the REAL THING!! NO malevolent universe, NO lapse in philosophic unity, NO mind-body dichotomy in the heroes... I just wish I had read it sooner

I cannot recommend it enough!!!!!!!!!!

You got it! This is a novel that I wanted to mark up and highlight so much, but it wasn't my copy, but one of the libraries. Book 1 is a novel where you don't want to give back, until you have your own copy, or just pretend you lost it, and buy it off the library. I was close to doing that with Lessing's play Emilia Galotti, because it's hard to find. I of course had to tame my literary impulses, but it's hard with these ones! So what I do is just keep renewing my books, until I can afford to buy, or be able to find them. What? :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a question about Book Two, now that I have finally been able to check this one out of the library. I'd ask Mr. Cline, but it may very well be deemed frivolous.

But often I try to listen to the music that the characters listen to in a novel, and I wanted to find Vivaldi's "Echo" Concerto for Two Violins, but am not exactly sure if I had found it or not. Those of you who have read the novel might remember this, let me quote it:

He liked the "Echo" Concerto so much that he persuaded his father to pay the musicians to perform it again after the theater had emptied of other patrons. The novelty of the answering, off-stage violin appealed to him for a reason he did not know.

Anyone know more about this, or where I can find this Concerto to listen to?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't be sure, but I don't think Mr. Cline would see that question as frivolous. It is a good-faith question that would lead you to better appreciate his work. Plus, he's probably heard it somewhere and could likely point you in the right direction.

I love this series, too. I'm going to re-read the first five books before reading number 6.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I can't be sure, but I don't think Mr. Cline would see that question as frivolous. It is a good-faith question that would lead you to better appreciate his work. Plus, he's probably heard it somewhere and could likely point you in the right direction.

Perhaps I will wait and ask the questions I have in this thread, then if I'm not satisfied, I'll email him like with my question about the Skelly flag. Plus, this brings more due attention to this series itself I think.

I love this series, too. I'm going to re-read the first five books before reading number 6.

I have just requested all of the novels in this series, since they are finally all available from the library. I certainly have every intention of owning this series in the near future, along with many other books that I have been reading that are not mine.

From Google, it would seem that tracks 17, 18 and 19 on this disc are what you;re looking for.

Thanks, SoftwareNerd. I was thinking that it was the A minor not the A major Concerto movements. I'll try to give the A Major ones a listen soon. At least I have it narrowed down some. Plus, I was thinking it would be kind of hard to distinguish with the accompanying orchestra an off-stage violinist in the ones I was listening to, but still imaginable nonetheless. I imagine that you could hear at times that a violin would be playing yet none of those on stage were playing, at least in some parts in the movements if I can recall from what I heard/saw.

I think Hugh liked this so much, because of the answering involved. The two violins are able to speak a certain musical language together, perhaps something he was missing from his own life. I think his parents saw him and could not tell if it was joy or loneliness on his face: it was probably a mixture/both: joy in seeing such an exchange and wanting that kind of exchange in his own life from some unseen equal or one he could admire.

The language and dialogue used at times in this book is remarkeable to me, like the first. I just have trouble with understanding what's taking place in that period historically, which is not the fault of the author for I'm reading this book not for that, but more for other elements. It's my fault for overlooking it for that which I'm looking for in it.

So, since I'm going through the series now while I'm on a reading binge rather than a writing one for the moment, I might as well wait to see if I have more questions and then save up all for just one email, if need be.

Here's one: The Kenrick family motto: Vires facit veritas means what? I don't think it was translated from the Latin in the novel, and Googleing it didn't help me.

Edited by softwareNerd
typo fix

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Here's one: The Kenrick family motto: Vires facit veritas means what?
It is about force/power (vires) and truth (veritas). "Facit" is about "making", as in Darwins's "“NATURA NON FACIT SALTUS" (Nature does not make a leap).

Maybe "power makes truth"?

Was the motto portrayed as a negative or a positive?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Maybe "power makes truth"?

Was the motto portrayed as a negative or a positive?

It's referred to back on page forty-five. I think that that may be close to what it means then, thank you.

I think in an implied negative way it was portrayed, perhaps. From page forty seven: "'Is not our motto noble enough for you, dear nephew?' asked the Earl"

this was in repsonse to young Hugh suggestion that the motto for his "Pater" or father be "O Fortunatas Mercatores!" Meaning "Oh, happy traders!" from page forty six.

Edited by intellectualammo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While I was reading tonight on my break, I came across yet another reference to this "Echo" concerto in Book Two. The performance this time is described in this manner: "One of the violins played the 'echo' portion from a second-story balcony of the house, the other remained with the ensemble."(p.274) Hugh was enjoying this with Reverdy. It does have to do with communicating, the speaking between souls as Hugh says. This is the moment Reverdy understands his take on their relationship, too - she asks him which of them is the echo, he answers her with a question of whether it matters. I was told by somone that in the later books, there's even more attention to romantic relationships. I hope that's true, because the moments I have read about in the last two novels are amazing! The way he has them speaking to each other, treating each other in such relationships, is so romantic! I want to finish this novel before sunrise, so I better go...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Adding Edward Cline to my list. I look forward to reading Sparrowhawk after I'm finished with Sword of Truth.

Ed Cline, you may be swamped with Objectivist email now!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Adding Edward Cline to my list.

He's still on my list too. The last three of the books in the series arrived at the library a few days ago, but I am reading some Ibsen right now and I'd like to finish some more of his plays and a biography on him first, before I settle back into Cline's series.

Edited by intellectualammo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
He's still on my list too. The last three of the books in the series arrived at the library a few days ago, but I am reading some Ibsen right now and I'd like to finish some more of his plays and a biography on him first, before I settle back into Cline's series.

I'm already into Book Five already! I came across another jack that I am wondering what it looks like on page 79-80. What's this cross on the flag with the stripes? Never saw one before. Also I want to look more into Etain's name, because I suspect it's meaningful in some way, perhaps chosen because of that as well. Anyone know more about either, please comment on. I'll go back to both details later, along with looking up Etain's repertoire, but for now I want to read on. I can bother with such dtails later.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×