Thursday, 5 June 2014
Book: The Spring by A Ka
Eostre is a young postulant living in a nunnery in Switzerland and she's been living in more realities than she can keep track of. In one her only problem is that the other nuns think that she is badly cut out for life in the convent, but in another the world is suffering from the Delirium, and Eostre has to watch her only friend, Ingrid, die. All the while Eostre is having strange dreams of the Four Together, where the cryptic messages that she is given only confuse her more. All leads her to a choice; whether to drink the Golden Bridle or carry on with the nightmare she has been living.
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The Spring is part 2 of Issac the Fortunate and follows The Winter, however the stories are only linked in very small ways, and it took me quite a while to figure out what those ways were (other than the mentions of the cure for the Delirium). The links are subtle, and I found that that greatly added to my enjoyment of the story. They have also led to a theory about Eostre's role in the story as a hole, but I'll have to wait to find out if I'm right!
I liked the fact that there was a friendship between Eostre and Ingrid in the nunnery, it felt much more real that Eostre had a friend, especially because Ingrid would ask questions that made Eostre question her spirituality and how much or how little she believed in God. Again, this was a theme throughout the book, with several characters questioning their beliefs, including some high up nuns.
This was aided by the rich history and context that the author gave to the book; considering that most of the story was set in a nunnery the main context was that of the reforms going on around Europe and the rise of the protestant faith (with notable references to Calvin and Luther). I thought that it really helped to move the story along and to made it have more depth.
The Delirium, which was one of the focuses of The Winter, played a small part in The Spring, it was definitely there and I am looking forward to reading more about the Delirium and the characters that A Ka has created.