Thursday, May 18, 2017

Daemons Discuss - Podcast: Take 16! | Chapter Discussion about the All Souls Trilogy; Ch 11-15 of A Discovery of Witches

We map our journey in A Discovery of Witches; ch 11-15
Take 16 - The One With the Owl

Description: Originally this was to be called "The One With the Dates," but hey. We're Daemons. We change our minds sometimes. We talk about start of the whirlwind courtship that eventually — in about +/- 70 chapters — culminates into the Bishop-Clairmont scion. Let's not get too far ahead of ourselves, though! This is the beginning of a new era, so we will take our time to savor the moments (Matthew-style, even though he was annoying us with his teasing!) From snowflakes to Sept-Tours, this is the episode containing the stuff in between.

SPOILER ALERT! We (The Daemons) approach this podcast with an assumption that the listener has read The All Souls Trilogy, including A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night, and The Book of Life.  If you haven't, and you don't mind, we certainly don't mind!  😊  Let's do this.


1. Show notes:

For newcomers to the series:
- We'll start with the basics: The books in discussion are A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night and The Book of Life.  Together they make The All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness. 
- Our Daemon Guides to the All Souls Trilogy are available for download: ADOW, SON, TBOL
Deb's newsletter; subscribe on her website
- If you'd like a ready-reference from the author herself, be sure to download the All Souls Real-Time Reading companion (free e-book at online booksellers via Penguin and Headline books).
- Deborah Harkness usually conducts a real-time reading on her Facebook Page (starting in September), and shares her posts across social media.  Check out her website for all of her social media links, and of course all that she has to offer her readers!  Be sure to sign up for her newsletter while you are there!
- To see what's available on the web as far as the All Souls universe fandom, check our links page.

In this episode:
* (00:27) - All Souls Con info:
Passes: $79, virtual passes: $0 (! --> thanks goes to Penguin Books for sponsoring the live stream)  All early bird prices end the 15th of June, 2017 — Virtual passes will remain absolutely free!  Regular passes will go up to $99. 
* (00:59) - We’re sorry, or you’re welcome (depending on who you are!) This is a longer episode (we normally like to keep regular episodes between 35-55 minutes – all bets are off with the special editions), but sometimes in post-production we get really attached to the audio, because we don’t want to cut things we think add overall value for the listener’s benefit (information and/or entertainment). Weigh in with your input on the short survey below! This is to feed our curiosity about listener preferences:

survey service

* (02:30) - Thank you, Discussers! Shouts out goes to Stephen, Lisa, & Karina!

a. Chapter 11
* (06:23) - Snowflakes!
"When Matthew came into the Selden End, without warning or sound, no icy patches announced his arrival. Instead there were touches of snowflakes all along my hair, shoulders, and back, as if he were checking quickly to make sure I was all in one piece.
My fingers gripped the table in front of me. For a few moments, I didn’t dare turn in case it was simply Miriam. When I saw it was indeed Matthew, my heart gave a single loud thump."
* (06:56) - I understand there has been some excitement (in Valerie’s heart!)
He dragged his eyes from the witch and strode to my side. When I frowned uncertainly at his fierce expression, he gave me a reassuring smile. “I understand there’s been some excitement.” He was so close that the coolness of his body felt as refreshing as a breeze on a summer day.
* (07:56) - Matthew Clairmont's patience. Matthew: “Can it wait?” Angela, Jean & Valerie: “NOOOOOOooooo!”
Can our conversation wait—just until the end of the day?” he asked. Matthew’s fingers strayed up to touch a bump on his sternum that was visible under the soft fibers of his sweater. I wondered what he was wearing, close to his heart. “We could go to yoga.”
* (09:01) - More creature myths busted . . .
“Because some things shouldn’t be discussed in mixed company,” he said with a touch of impatience. “Do witches tell creatures who aren’t witches that they’ve just returned from four days of casting spells and boiling bats?”
“Witches don’t boil bats!” I said indignantly.
“The point remains.”
* (09:35) - Valerie says Aly’s episode is the “next episode.” It was at the time of recording, but in publishing reality, it’s actually the previous episode. It can be found here:

* (09:46) - Amira has to drag these two inside. Others are starting to notice the Matthew/Diana connection.  We assume that Amira,  – being an empath – knew from the first class they attended together.
“Are you two coming in, or are you going to practice out here on the drive?” Amira called from the doorway.
* (10:15) - The Ampulla
A "replica" of Matthew Clairmont's Ampulla from Trilogie

* (10:19) - That damn owl! We discuss spirit animals, signs, Easter eggs, the placement of the owl, the owls being messengers, association with death, or was it just a way to show Matthew’s being protective or attentive.

* (12:57) - The ride home. The talk. The establishment of “friendship”
Is that what we are, then? Friends?” Matthew asked.
“I think so. Friends tell each other the truth, even when it’s difficult.” Disconcerted by the seriousness of the conversation, I toyed with the ties on my sweater.
* (13:29) - She asks him to dinner.
Would you like to come to dinner tomorrow?” I asked him, my voice low. “We could talk about what happened then.”
Matthew froze, confusion flitting over his face along with something I couldn’t name. His fingers flexed slightly around the pilgrim’s badge before he released it.
“I’d like that,” he said slowly.

b. Chapter 12
* (14:38) - Shopping for dinner. Jean and Angela thought the dinner may have been delicious. Valerie lives in the one of the seafood capitols of the world (also with a world-famous covered market — fish-mongers and all), yet doesn’t enjoy fish, or game really. Oh well. As long as Matthew enjoys it.

Oxford's covered market
* (17:07) - Diana’s getting ready for this dinner was charming. From contacting a zoologist, to picking out the wine and finding clothing to wear.

* (18:44) - Did Rebecca use a cloaking spell? Valerie thinks it could be possible, but Jean took it as how Diana interpreted the love on her mother’s face.
My mother’s face stared back at me from the mirror. I thought of how beautiful she’d looked when she sat down to dinner, and I wondered what  she’d done to make her pale eyebrows and lashes stand out the way they did and why her wide mouth looked so different when she smiled at me or my father.
* (19:58) - Jean thought this book, maybe written a few years later, Diana would've been watching a YouTube makeover tutorial. Kandee Johnson has a YouTube channel, perhaps Diana could’ve benefited! Val's personal favorite makeover channel: Pixiwoo.

* (20:55) - Like a prince in a fairy tale… more creature myths. Matthew is just being polite!
When I pulled the door open, Matthew stood outside looking like the prince in a fairy tale, tall and straight. In a break with his usual habits, he wore unadulterated black, which only made him look more striking—and more a vampire.
He waited patiently on the landing while I examined him.
“Where are my manners? Please come in, Matthew. Will that do as a formal invitation to enter my house?” I had seen that on TV or read it in a book.
His lips curved into a smile. “Forget most of what you think you know about vampires, Diana. This is just normal politeness. I’m not being held back by a mystical barrier standing between me and a fair maiden.” Matthew had to stoop slightly to make it through the doorframe. He cradled a bottle of wine and carried some white roses.
* (21:27) The comet. This chapter is Easter egg laden, and this is the first time Valerie Googled something for this book.

* (22:00) - Château d'Yquem - Jean says it’s everything that’s your particular favorite in a glass.

© AFP | Vineyards surround Château d'Yquem in Bordeaux, southwestern France
* (22:49) - Matthew’s aquiline nose. Valerie and Jean have expressed that they love the look on people. Those of you blessed with this regal nose, please . . . skip the surgery!
adjective: aquiline

    like an eagle.
        (of a person's nose) hooked or curved like an eagle's beak.
        synonyms:    hooked, curved, bent, angular, Roman; beaklike, beaky
        "an aquiline nose"
* (22:32) - The power of smell.  Smell is a huge factor in this book. This chapter is basically smell and taste.

* (24:27) - Matthew is 1500 years old!
“I believe that my body is nearly thirty-seven years of age. I was born around the time Clovis converted to Christianity. My parents remembered that, or I’d have no idea. We didn’t keep track of birthdays back then. It’s tidier to pick the date of five hundred and be done with it.” He looked up at me, briefly, and returned his attention to the candles. “I was reborn a vampire in 537, and with the exception of Attila—who was before my time—you’ve touched on most of the high and low points in the millennium between then and the year I put the keystone into my house in Woodstock. Because you’re a historian, I feel obligated to tell you that Machiavelli was not nearly as impressive as you all seem to think he was. He was just a Florentine politician—and not a terribly good one at that.” A note of weariness had crept into his voice.
* (25:15 ) - The list of events while Diana was trying to guess Matthew’s age:
“I’m a historian. If somebody tells me he remembers when chocolate was introduced into France or a comet passing overhead in 1811, it’s difficult not to be curious about the other events he might have lived through. You were alive in 1536—I’ve been to the house you had built. Did you know Machiavelli? Live through the Black Death? Attend the University of Paris when Abelard was teaching there?”
He remained silent. The hair on the back of my neck started to prickle.
“Your pilgrim’s badge tells me you were once in the Holy Land. Did you go on crusade? See Halley’s comet pass over Normandy in 1066?”
Still nothing.
“Watch Charlemagne’s coronation? Survive the fall of Carthage? Help keep Attila from reaching Rome?”
Matthew held up his right index finger. “Which fall of Carthage?”

“You tell me!”
* (25:45) - See our Tumblr link-->  Huang's World

Eddie Huang in Burgundy
* (26:15) - Diana smells of the forest in spring. She’s associated with the maiden early. Jean brings up the fact that clove pinks and that were used in wedding bouquets as a symbol of fertility.

* (27:57) - Matthew’s interest in Ashmole 782.  It started when he got an Advanced Reader’s Copy of Origin, by Charles Darwin.

* (28:45) - That kiss . . . in the slow French manner. Valerie thought it was the European version of “kiss kiss” not the mouth grab, Angela and Jean were swayed by the full on mouth grab. You are the reader, you decide!
Matthew studied me. When I showed no sign of hysteria or an inclination to make a run for it, he leaned toward me and kissed me slowly once, twice in the French manner. His face skimmed over mine, and he drank in my scent of willow sap and honeysuckle. When he straightened, Matthew’s eyes looked smokier than usual.
* (29:58) - Sarah blows up Diana’s answering machine immediately after the dinner. Angela and Jean: “Go away, Sarah!”
Moments later, leaning against the closed door, I spied the blinking number one on my answering machine. Mercifully, the machine’s volume was turned down.
Aunt Sarah wanted to ask the same question I’d asked myself.
I just didn’t want to answer.
c. Chapter 13
* (30:13) - We meet Marcus Whitmore!  He reminds Jean of an old movie called Real Genius (according to Jean, Val Kilmner’s character is essentially Marcus in this scene.)

* (31:15) - The Vampire murders again:
“Let’s hope we can do a better job keeping it than we have done at hiding this.” Matthew slid the file toward me.
Three sets of vampire eyes watched me attentively as I opened it. VAMPIRE ON THE LOOSE IN LONDON, the headline screamed. My stomach flopped over, and I moved the newspaper clipping aside. Underneath was the report of another mysterious death involving a bloodless corpse. Below that was a magazine story accompanied by a picture that made its contents clear despite my inability to read Russian. The victim’s throat had been ripped open from jaw to carotid artery.
There were dozens more murders, and reports in every language imaginable. Some of the deaths involved beheadings. Some involved corpses drained of blood, without a speck of blood evidence found at the scene. Others suggested an animal attack, due to the ferocity of the injuries to the neck and torso.
* (31:32) - Angela fears for Diana’s safety because she didn’t know Marcus. Jean and Valerie felt Marcus presented himself as rather harmless (and casual).
“We can taste it, too. Adrenaline makes blood even more delicious,” Marcus said. “Spicy, silky, and then it turns sweet. Really good stuff.”
A low rumble started in Matthew’s throat. His lips curled away from his teeth, and Marcus stepped backward. Miriam placed her hand firmly on the blond vampire’s forearm.
* (32:00) - An American Werewolf in London! The SCENE (not embedded, cause it's pretty gruesome!)

* (33:44) - Matthew’s plea for Diana to come to dinner with him.
At the bottom of my staircase, I faced Matthew, still holding his hand. “Thanks for taking me to yoga—again.”
“You’re welcome.” He tucked my impossible piece of hair back behind my ear, fingers lingering on my cheek. “Come to dinner tomorrow,” he said softly. “My turn to cook. Can I pick you up here at half past seven?”
My heart leaped. Say no, I told myself sternly in spite of its sudden jump.
“I’d love to,” came out instead.
d. Chapter 14
* (34:00) Dinner at Matthew’s place – Angela: “Masterpiece.”  We’ve come to the conclusion (as an aside) that the two dinners could be combined for the television production.

* (35:27) All Souls College:

"All Souls College was a masterpiece of late Gothic architecture, resembling the love child of a wedding cake and a cathedral"
* (36:33) - The meal + wines
  • Oysters, champagne, —1961 Dom Perignon — a salad with greens, nuts, berries and a vinaigrette made with champagne vinegar, finished off with Diana's "Birthday wine".
  • Stew made with veal and apples (recipe from Normandy), served with Château Margaux --> this is the wine that got Diana in a bit of trouble, because it supposedly tasted like Matthew, and she asked the question "what would I taste like?" EEK!
  • The evening was closed out with some old malmsy from 1795. 
* (37:16) - Matthew’s background:
“Let’s get this over with,” he said, holding up his hands and beginning to tick off colleges. “I’ve been a member—once—of Merton, Magdalen, and University colleges. I’ve been a member of New College and Oriel twice each. And this is the first time All Souls has paid any attention to me.”
* (37:54) - “What would I taste like….?”
Matthew shot to his feet, his face white and furious. His napkin fell, unnoticed, to the floor. A vein in his forehead pulsed once before subsiding.
I had said something wrong.
He was at my side in the time it took me to blink, pulling me up from my chair. His fingers dug into my elbows.
“There’s one legend about vampires we haven’t discussed, isn’t there?” His eyes were strange, his face frightening. I tried to squirm out of his reach, but his fingers dug deeper. “The one about a vampire who finds himself so bewitched by a woman that he cannot help himself.”
* (38:29) - They decide to go back to the Bodleian and try to retrieve Ashmole 782.
“I’ve made a decision, Matthew. On Monday I’ll be recalling Ashmole 782.”
The vampire sat down abruptly.

e. Chapter 15
* (38:45) - “Pew-pew!” 🔫🔫 refer to: 😂! Hint: “you’re the one”

* (38:57) - Matthew was at New College! They have breakfast, he drops Diana off at her rooms, then they meet once again at the Bodleian with the intent of recalling Ashmole782

That New College scarf we were talking about ... made to look old.  Knitted by Maro Hogan. Photo © Maro Hogan
* (40:06) - No luck with Ashmole 782. Not only was it lost, but it had been missing since 1859.
Mr. Johnson consulted a book on his desk, running his finger over lines scrawled by generations of reading-room supervisors. “Ah, yes. Ashmole  782. That’s been missing since 1859. We don’t have a microfilm.” Matthew’s chair scraped away from his desk.
“But I saw it a few weeks ago.”
“That’s not possible, Dr. Bishop. No one has seen this manuscript for one hundred and fifty years.” Mr. Johnson blinked behind his thick-rimmed glasses.
* (40:59) - Diana burned a hole in Matthew’s rug, and Diana needed some “handling.” For the record, Angela’s inner voice broke at this point: “I loved that!”
“No, I don’t imagine you do,” he said, “but it is interesting just the same. Now let’s turn to another topic.” His mouth drifted toward my ear, and I tried—unsuccessfully—to pull it away. “What is this nonsense about my not being interested in anything but an old manuscript?”
* (42:24) - It was decided that Diana needed to hide out for a while at Woodstock at the Old Lodge
You’ll stay at Woodstock until Peter Knox leaves Oxford.”
My face must have betrayed my dismay.
“It won’t be so bad,” he said gently. “You’ll have all the yoga you want.”
With Matthew in bodyguard mode, I didn’t have much choice. And if he was right—which I suspected he was—someone had already gotten past Fred and into my rooms.
* (43:32) - That envelope . . .
The mail contained nothing but bills and a large brown envelope with my name typed on it. There was no stamp, indicating it came from someone within the university. I slid my finger under the flap and pulled out the contents.
A piece of ordinary paper was clipped to something smooth and shiny. Typed on the paper was a single line of text.
Hands shaking, I pulled off the slip. The paper fluttered to the floor, revealing a familiar glossy photograph. I’d only seen it reproduced in black and white, though, in the newspapers. This was in color, and as bright and vivid as the day it had been taken, in 1983.
* (44:11) - Matthew rushes in at vampire’s pace…the porter knew about vampires? Maybe?
Matthew moved so quickly that Fred had to know he was a vampire. He crouched in front of me. My teeth chattered with shock.
* (45:40) - “I’ve got you, girl”
“No matter what she said, I will not let Knox or any other witch harm you. I’ve got you now.” Matthew’s voice was fierce, and he bowed his head and rested his cheek on my hair while I cried. “Oh, Diana. Why didn’t you tell me?”
* (46:00) - The Chain … no, not the Fleetwood Mac song, — although the lyrics are very apropos to Diana and Matthew’s relationship — but Diana’s chain. Check out the Fleetwood Mac lyrics (just because the writer of today’s show notes adores that song -- also? Check out this new remix from Guardians of the Galaxy 2! Love it! Ok, damn. My bad. Distracted writer of show notes!), oh … and the pertinent quote from the book because this is what we actually were talking about:
Somewhere in the center of my soul, a rusty chain began to unwind. It freed itself, link by link, from where it had rested unobserved, waiting for him. My hands, which had been balled up and pressed against his chest, unfurled with it. The chain continued to drop, to an unfathomable depth where there was nothing but darkness and Matthew. At last it snapped to its full length, anchoring me to a vampire. Despite the manuscript, despite the fact that my hands contained enough voltage to run a microwave, and despite the photograph, as long as I was connected to him, I was safe.
* (46:27) - When did that chain appear….?  It was so rusty, so it had been there for a while.  Was this a time loop thing? We try not to think too hard about it here in order to keep our relative sanity. Here is the passage that relates to the chain in Shadow of Night -- if it's a time loop thing, just think about it for a second, and let it go! It's the only way! 😂
Deep within me the chain that I had somehow forged out of love and longing for someone I had yet to meet flexed between us and became fluid. It was thick and unbreakable, filled with a life-giving sap that flowed continuously from witch to vampire and back to witch.
* (48:10) - The end of this five. The next five will take us on a journey to France! Yay! 🙌🙌🙌 To meet Ysabeau!👏👏👏 Aaaaaand ... MUPPET ARMS!

Kermit flailing! via Cheezburger on GIPHY
* (48:30) - Knock-knock … housekeeping! FYI, we put these emails in this category, because they’ve been sitting in our inbox for a while, and it’s time to address them and clean off our figurative desks. Thanks go to Stephen and Lisa for sending us their thoughts via email.  Subjects: Jack’s Daemonic tendencies, UK vs. US English, and Diana’s territorial display in the Bodleian.

* (53:37) - Promo break, scroll down, or click here to get a hold of us and/or become a Discusser.

* (55:11) - Jean’s last thought: She wants to hear about other’s first time reading the Trilogy.

* (56:17) - Valerie, strangely (with this read), finds herself with things in common with Diana . . .

* (58:38) - All Souls Con is creeping up!  Be there or be square! 23rd of September 2017 in New Orleans! We’ve started shopping for plane tickets for All Souls Con! Still side-eyeing United Airlines, but for the right price we may forgive…

* (1:00:28) - Jo Malone’s cologne Wood Sage and Sea Salt. It smells great! This particular fragrance supposedly (according to Deb) smells like Gallowglass. TREAT YO SELF! We offered a travel sized version to the winner of our Spring 2017 giveaway. Winner, please describe the scent to Angela!

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Special Edition, The One With the Yogini

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