The first chapter is intriguing enough; Garander and Ishta are likeable characters. The thing Ishta found does look more like sorcery than wizardry, but I reckon we’ll need to see more of how it behaves to be sure.
I found myself googling “league” to remember out how many leagues in a mile so I’d understand the distances they’re talking about. Which actually makes me wonder what the point of putting the distance in leagues rather than miles is, since they’re both presumably “translations” of whatever units they use in Ethshar. I guess “leagues” feel more fantasy-like?
Which by the way, if the closest armed authority is fifteen miles away and they belong to Sardiron, I sort of see Grondar’s point.
I like the dynamic being established where Garander clearly doesn’t like his father and he’s our viewpoint character so we don’t long Grondar either, but Grondar isn’t actually being unreasonable.
Hmm, the Earth mile is from the latin for 1,000 and is roughly 1,000 full paces (two steps each). Roman surveyers did in fact pace out distances.
From your use of “paced out” I assume the Ethsharic mile has a similar origin, so how many steps to get roughly 5,650′? Is it still 2,000 and they just have a slightly longer pace due to better childhood nutrition or something?
I just received my copy of Sorcerer’s Widow yesterday, I cant wait to reread it and see how it varies from the first online draft. I am looking forward to the new story and reading each chapter as they come and hopefully seeing the completed novel.
Ah, but many people are CONFUSED by Verne using leagues. I’ve encountered people who thought the 20,000 leagues under the sea was the DEPTH the nautilus could reach, not the total distance they traveled, and consequently assumed a league was a fairly short distance.
I’m mildly curious about differing units, and am perfectly willing to convert furlongs per fortnight to feet per second. (Roughly 0.000545635 ft/sec in one furlong/fortnight for anyone who cares.) Thus I’m curious about Ethsharitic units, which sometimes seem deliberately odd and sometimes not.
For example IIRC the Ethshartic week is 5 days, but they still have a 14 day fortnight, which confuses even them. I keep wondering if the units tie in with the origin of the world, it’s fairly obviously a construct, but who made it and how and why are all still obscure and I look at units as possible hints.
What? The Ethsharitic equivalent of a week is a sixnight, and the equivalent of a fortnight is a twelvenight — there’s nothing remotely inconsistent there. All months are thirty days, or five sixnights; the days of a sixnight don’t have names, just numbers, and the numbers reset every year during Festival, so the first day of a month is ALWAYS the first day of the sixnight.
Absolutely consistent and simple.
(The month was originally set by the larger moon’s cycle, but that’s actually a little under thirty days, and Festival messed it up further, so the months don’t always start on the new moon the way they were meant to. The smaller moon’s cycle is something like fifteen hours, which gets so complicated in relation to the days that no one in Ethshar bothers to keep track of it.)
Anyway, a league is three miles, same as it used to be in England. (Continental leagues varied all over.) It’s just a slightly longer mile.
Doug Lampert: I think you might be thinking of Steven Brust’s Dragaera. The Dragaerans have a week of five days, if I recall correctly, and the immigrant Easterners have adopted the five-day “week” but still use a fourteen-day fortnight, a vestigial trace of the seven-day week they used in the old country.
I got my copy of _The Sorcerer’s Widow_ in the mail a couple of days ago; it looks good.
Maybe you need to think about doing your next book as a scientific journal on the conversion of Ethshaic Weights and Measures to American and Metric. You could probably streach that out to about 50 chapters….@ $125/chapter… that could be quire profitable. And clearly it’s an item of great need…to some…
Sheesh. Most of the units are deliberately so similar to ours as to be not worth distinguishing. Yeah, the mile’s longer, and a lot of people don’t know what a league is beyond “a long way,” but really…