Please update your status accordingly whenever it changes.
Discussing anything is fine, be it about language questions, about the contents or about real historic events! Please state clearly which chapter (or roughly which percentage) you’re referring to, and please hide spoilers. Also, don’t forget the forum etiquette, of course.
Buying the Book
If you’re planning to buy the book on Bookwalker or Amazon and if you’re outside of Japan, you will need a VPN to buy them. Afterwards, you can download it to the app without the need for a VPN. I think you cannot read it in the browser without VPN, though.
The book mentions a lot of real (as far as we know ) historical figures and events. Here are some information resources on them. (Please be aware that if you want to go in 100% blind, these lists will contain some spoilers for you)
Please add Chapter, Page, if possible, when something is mentioned in the story.
Sure, sure, no rush! I’m also planning to catch up with my other book clubs before continuing this series (this time for real, hopefully!). Also, some studying for JLPT might be in order…
I just figured I’d already put up the thread so that I cannot forget later on
I would have done the same for sure. Then I saw you had actually finished it and got curious. I think you should just do you! Whether that is studying more seriously, or just enjoying your reading and sharing your thoughts with us - it’s all fine really! ^>^
I’m very thankful for you helping out with filling in all the names in the last volume. It got me into a mode where I just didn’t check things out anymore, until I saw you had given me some answers already.
Let’s keep the team-working going in this next volume!
Can totally relate! There were just soooo many names and places While I was a bit like that for the chapters that were set in Spain (like, omg yet another crazy Spanish name, nopenopenope ) on the English side of things I got really curious. And the more difficult it was to figure out who might have been the person behind that string of katakana, the more curious I got But I must confess I couldn’t figure out all of them - still it’s an impressive list already. So please help yourself and enjoy!
So, I finished vol 4 finally. How are you feeling about starting in on vol 5? I don’t know if I’ll read anything more today. But, maybe a bit would be fun. That cliffhanger from vol 4 is eating at me. XD
I wonder how many F&B books we can finish by the end of the year. A minimum of one per month would be 7 total finished, but I could see an extra or two sneaking in there if we start partway through a month.
…I couldn’t keep myself from opening up the volume. So, I’m on chapter 2 all of a sudden. But, I doubt I’ll keep this up for long. We’ll see. My energy for reading comes and goes usually.
Chapter 1 thoughts
Jeoffrey desperately tries to ease the fate of Kaito and he manages some of it. Rather than being thrown into the infamous Newgate prison, Kaito is instead sent to The Clink, which at the time mostly held heretics. Jeoffrey also buys some time for Kaito, during which he’s to find witnesses disputing the murder claims. It’s a race against the clock before Walshingham gets to use torture to force a confession out of Kaito.
it’s very interesting that you can pay to get food and drink into the prison, which Drake is willing to do to ensure Kaito isn’t wasting away in there.
Chapter 2 thoughts
This chapter is from Kaito’s perspective as he’s incarcerated at The Clink. It’s certainly a very unpleasant experience all round. He also goes into introspection mode about his fears of being left behind if Jeoffrey’s desire for him ends up being sated.
The chapter also reads almost like a thriller, in that there’s much tension about what’s going to happen to Kaito. dun dun dun
But, yeah, things just got much much worse for Kaito! Walshingham isn’t shy about ignoring a direct order of the queen and has sent in a torture expert to interrogate Kaito. (just hurt him in places you can’t see! )
So I read some of your spoilers because I’m also pretty excited for volume 5, and I have to ask: is there any actual torture shown here? Or implied? Or held off until next chapter? I’m super squicky about stuff like that; it’s really hard for me to read. :< I want Kaito to be okay…
There is description of exactly what he went through, though in the end, the chosen method is sleep deprivation, so it’s not of the super icky kind, thankfully. Chapter 2 is still pretty difficult to read regardless, due to the feelings of horror. You can skip it of you want to. And maybe ask more questions about it and I’ll try to give you some more details about stuff that might be interesting to know about Kaito’s time at the Clink in this chapter.
Back to Jeoffrey’s POV. The lack of urgency in the beginning here didn’t land well with me: what are you doing?! Get on a horse and go to the rescue already! >:c Well, turns out they do need a bit more thought behind their actions to actually get Kaito out of the Clink. But yeah, having just read about what Kaito goes through makes me immediately want someone to rescue him. Y_Y
To be honest, I can’t keep track anymore of all these historical people!
I do wonder about what people at the time read into artistic works. Whether its probable for anyone to make a connection, such as the one Jeoffrey makes for Astrophel and Stella? In this case, the reading of Philip Sidney and Penelope’s possible relationship into the work is only speculated about in current historical research. Would people at the time be any wiser? Knowledge has certainly disappeared, but people also weren’t very scholarly or knowledgeable about things due to the lack of easily available information. And I guess, who encountered sonnets like this might be something to consider, i.e. I’m assuming the upper classes. Most works of art were not public or readily accessible.
In any case, after much plotting and scheming, trying to figure out how to best manipulate the people of the Elizabethan court, making them play into their attempt to save Kaito, Nigel and Jeoffrey finalize their plans. …
…Only to have a real heart-to-heart moment! Some honest revelations are shared and things become much more clear as to the current dynamic of this trio. I’m glad Jeoffrey and Nigel can have a conversation like this. That it doesn’t seem like it will undermine their friendship. I really love Jeoffrey and Nigel and so I don’t want to see Kaito become a wedge between them
I was planned to watch anime this week end, but this book-series is a black hole and I’m beyond the event horizon! Halp! XD
Chapter 4 thoughts
Major spoiler again
I had a major moment of confusion as I started reading this chapter, but it’s really quite brilliant! This chapter isn’t about Kaito, as you might think as you start with the descriptions, but we’re jumping in time and space, and now we’re finally learning of the fate of Katsuya. Like Kaito, he’s incarcerated for the suspicion of murder: the murder of Kaito! Poor Katsuya! :C
Continuation of spoilers…
He’s having a very hard time with the police not believing his story of the events. There’s even a witness who saw him hit Kaito back in volume 1, when Kaito said he didn’t think of Katsuya as a real friend (that Katsuya merely stayed around because of their fathers). It all doesn’t add up for Katsuya, and there is no explanation for Kaito’s disappearance than Katsuya saying he was gone when he got back after calling for an ambulance. Things aren’t looking good for him.
More spoilers, and some speculation
After the interlude of Katsuya’s situation, we’re back to Kaito’s fate at the hands of the interrogator. It’s not going well for him. But, interestingly, it seems Kaito was dreaming of the fate of Katsuya, as in, he’s made aware of his situation (I take it all happens actually to Katsuya and it’s not a simple dream meaning there is some mystical connection between Kaito and Katsuya.
Okay, now is a good time to pause things. Mid-chapter 4 lol. (I just worry about Kaito alright, but now I also feel like lots of stuff has to sink in before continuing. )
Well, I finished Ch 4. Jeoffrey really need to hurry up here. :C
Alrighty, I have officially started volume 5! \o/ I’ve finished chapter 1, and after thinking it over, I think I want to skip chapter 2 for now; chapter 3 looks like a Jeoffrey chapter, so it’s probably safe. Could you tell me if there’s anything important that happens I need to know about in chapter 2, @ekg? I really appreciate it.
In happier news, I noticed an incredibly important detail in the full color pictures of this volume: Blackie finally makes his illustrative debut! He’s looking incredibly cute, just as anticipated. I’m hoping he’s okay during all this mess with the bishop dying.
Jeoffrey commenting that Kit’s been in an out of prison enough he probably knows the gaolers well also made me smile.
I think the introspection part was the most interesting thing to keep in mind, that is: Kaito’s insecurities about his relationship with Jeoffrey. He seems to think that if he gives into Jeoffrey’s advances, and let’s him sate his desire by having sex, that would be enough for Jeoffrey who’d then leave him. I think this is a very strange view of sex, as I’ve hinted at before, which is very BL imo. After all, I think of sex as a natural part of any relationship which you’ll wanna do often. XD It’s nothing you need to build up to as such, not even the first time.
Also, about the reward Kaito got from the queen, that’s been settled as well (the discussion how much he got, if it was just one gold coin or several). Basically, Kaito uses part of his money to bribe the guards into allowing him a candle in the cell. I think there was something more he also payed for, but yeah, good thing he got all that money!
Also, we now know Walshingham never intended to keep to the Queen’s orders of no torture during Jeoffrey’s investigation time. He immediately made his move, ordering Kaito’s sleep deprivation torture, so there would be no evidence.
I think those are the main points from the chapter.