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Book Club: Golden Lily 23 & 24

The Golden Lily cover
Book Club Disclaimer:
Spoilers ahead! I'm not recapping these chapters in Bloodlines and The Golden Lily, but I do refer to some things that happen in them. These posts are to give some commentary and behind-the-scenes info for people who want to read along (or re-read) with me or walk down memory lane. If you haven't read the books, you might have some surprises ruined. So maybe go grab a copy and read along as we count down to The Indigo Spell! :)

THESE POSTS ARE NOT ABOUT THE INDIGO SPELL! You're safe if you've read the first two books in the series.

The Golden Lily, Chapter 23 & 24

Oh my gosh, you guys. We did it. We made it to the end of The Golden Lily. When I started this project last month, I thought I was taking on an impossible task. But here we are, with commentary on every book in the Bloodlines series (well, aside from Indigo). So. Let's get moving.

Assorted things happen in 23, but for me, the highlight is Brayden breaking up with Sydney because she's too "volatile." It's so silly (to me, at least) because we know Sydney's such a stable, reliable person...but I suppose in Brayden's eyes, after he's been pushed around and cancelled upon because of the whirlwind events in her life, she might truly seem like a bad relationship choice. Even Sydney realizes in this scene how crazy it is that she's being categorized as unreliable, and it's so absurd and unexpected...she loves it.

But let's move on to the main event in 24, which is probably the reason a lot of you have hung in there through these posts. We start of with Adrian's "intervention" in finally and openly calling out Sydney's eating and body obsessions. He's hinted at it before, but here's the first time he's basically like, "Look, this isn't funny. It's a real problem." Sydney hasn't pushed her body to a life-threatening level, but you don't have to be that far gone to still have a problem. Even if you aren't endangering yourself physically, there's still a lot of mental damage you can do by constantly judging yourself.

And then...there it is. It starts with Adrian's adorable confession about the Mustang. Were you guys able to figure out before this that he'd been faking it? It's so hard striking the right balance when I seed these little surprises. I think it's fun if you guys can put clues together, but sometimes I worry it'll be so obscure that I over-foreshadow and make it obvious.

This leads us to The Kiss, which has Sydney reeling--in more ways than one. The power of description isn't always in just specifically explaining the physicality of what's going on. In this scene, a huge part of the impact is describing Sydney's reaction. I purposely made this contrast with the earlier kisses with Brayden, which were pretty mechanical in nature. But here, we don't just have the excellent and well-excecuted (because it is Adrian, after all) kiss itself. We have all of Sydney's thoughts and feelings, how she responds physically and most startling of all for her--how she stops thinking, at least for a moment.

I said at the end of Bloodlines that Adrian had firmly fallen for her but wasn't quite able to accept it as a real thing. Here, he's able to do that. He acknowledges it and, despite all the complications and taboos, is willing to act on it. Sydney's a book behind him. All her feelings have been brewing behind that logical mind of hers but haven't reached that place where she can articulate them, let alone admit them to herself. And that's why she's just so floored here. There aren't many things she doesn't figure out on her own, so this is BIG. Add to that all the hang-ups she's had instilled in her, and you can understand why she's so brutal. Poor Adrian. For such a ladies man, he certainly has trouble with women. But, don't worry. He takes it in stride, at least if the first two chapters of The Indigo Spell are any indication, and something tells me from the way that Sydney keeps thinking of him and gets flustered around him that her heart is in for some serious self-analysis.

And there we go! Are you guys ready for Tuesday? Some copies have crept out early, but I know most of you will be waiting for release day! Whatever side you're on, be careful sharing spoilers if you've read it, and be careful reading comments if you haven't read it. The Indigo Spell is pretty powerful--and hot, did I mention that?--and I hope you guys love it!


Feb. 11th, 2013 12:43 am (UTC)
"Sydney isn't in the full throes of anorexia or anything like that, but you don't have to be that far gone to still have a problem."

Anorexia is not a size, and "that far gone" could be EDNOS. Eating disorders are mental conditions and Sydney seems pretty stuck with her rituals and routines (the no sugar, has to be diet soda pop, all that) and argues with herself over what she can't eat that I almost wish you would address these issues with a bit more force in the books. And eating disorders are about control (which I think Sydney lacks in her life, she might seem like she has a lot of control but it's all based on what people allow her to do, need her to do, tell her do fix, but when it comes to her own life, she has no control over that) not physical appearance. The dieting is the symptom of an eating disorder, not the cause. It upsets me a bit that Adrian tells her she'll never have Jill's body and that she should gain weight for her appearance. People with eating disorders usually aren't trying to lose weight just to be a certain size or look attractive to people, that might be a factor, but by the time you're stuck in the disorder, it's all about losing weight, not about being attractive. Still, when Adrian pointed it out to her and expressed in his own way that it was a problem, I nearly cried I was so happy because someone noticed Sydney's body image issues and did something.

I don't really know what I want to say, express here, except that I think Sydney has a bigger problem than really realized or stated in the books when it comes to her eating. I really hope that it's addressed more so than just Adrian saying something or Sydney eating a bit more, I'd like Sydney to actually get help from someone.

I guess what I really mean to say is: It is not a requirement of an eating disorder to be emaciated. You should seek help as soon as possible and people need to realize that even people who are thought of as a "healthy" size can be in the midsts of a life threatening eating disorder.

(By the way, I have read The Indigo Spell all ready - I couldn't resist, I got it early and I was too excited to not read it. I loved it - plenty of laugh out loud moments, suspense, and a generally amazing read - and I'm really looking forward to the next one!!)
Feb. 11th, 2013 05:38 am (UTC)
These are excellent comments, and I changed my wording to reflect the point I meant, which I didn't do as clearly as I should've. :) You're absolutely right that anorexia is as much the mental state as the physical one. There's a really well-done paranormal ya called HUNGER by Jackie Morse Kessler that delves into anorexia and doesn't pull any punches. It was really good..and really hard to read. Anyway, thank you for reading and for sharing your thoughts!
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