Judah and his sister communicate telepathically. Judah says he has to be away for a little while to learn who he is going to be. He reassures Aurora not to worry.


Things start getting pretty fucking weird. Media bitches about having to “work all this crap out”, which is significantly more complicated that dealing with the normal post-war ramifications. She’s helping Enyo make geographically correct maps to show the newly formed continents. Wait. Continents?

The ground had split apart when the Hell Gates collided with the earth. Can anyone say pangea? (loc. 4149)

Uh…are you referring to Pangaea? Is this story seriously supposed to be providing an explanation for why the supercontinent split up 200 million years ago?

Media talks Enyo into eventually renaming himself Ferdinand Magellan, but to wait until the 1400’s to use the name. Yeah, that’s a big help when you’re 200 million years away from that time.

Volcanoes are erupting from the oceans and the wars have shifted the tectonic plates. I assume these characters know about tectonic plates because they’re from the future and shit, but if that’s the case, then along the same lines, why haven’t they be anticipating everything that has happening? Then again, it’s probably too much to hope for an internally consistent time travel method.

A proclamation was declared that all of the events that had occurred were to be erased from histories and the use of Xanthippe’s friend Jazpare’s time system was implemented (loc. 4153).

Hopefully you don’t want to know why, because no explanation will be forthcoming. Media is sent out to spread false rumors about “Sun Gods and Water Spirits” being responsible, again, for reasons that aren’t clear. Why are these time-travelling douchebags trying to deliberately mislead humanity?

Religion began to prosper, led in part by Xanthippe who found his belief in “God” over whelming to his already slighted blood lust (loc. 4160)

I have no idea what this sentence means.

The All knowing:

Aurora asks Darian to tell her a story about her mother. Aurora’s hair is done up in a French braid which is interesting considering this is 200 million years before France exists, but we are in the POV of the All knowing, or sometimes the All Knowing.

Darian begins a story when Harlow was about twelve years old. It’s a little challenging for him to figure this out because they’re using ‘years’ to calculate time now, which makes sense. Sure, humanity started using the Gregorian calendar of ‘years’ during the 1500s, a full 200 million years later than this story is set. Then again, homo sapiens didn’t fucking exist 200 million years ago, so I probably shouldn’t be quibbling about the calendar.

Anyway, Darian shares a story about picking flowers that has no point. It makes Aurora laugh, though, and Darian puts her to bed.

Meanwhile, something strange became of Harlow who had been lain to rest now nearly a four months ago in the new time system; something strange indeed (loc. 4182).



Yep, not really dead. She comes to.

My eyes slowly adjusted to room with virtually no light (loc. 4185).

No, you’re buried underground, in a coffin. Virtually has no part in this. There is no light.

Harlow freaks out a bit and feels around, to satisfy herself that she is really in a coffin.

I thought logically. I felt to the side crevices until I found the hinges (loc. 4189).

Hinges are usually on the outside.

I picked out the pins in both of the hasps with my bloody splintered fingertips (loc. 4189).

I don’t think that’s actually possible. I’ve attempted to pick a lock or two in my lifetime, and fingernails, generally speaking, are not strong enough to turn a screw in a hinge. And, if this is a pin that was hammered in, a fingernail is certainly not strong enough to pry it loose.

Eventually Harlow starts punching the coffin door. It’s not clear whether she has successfully picked the hinges or not. But through continued punching, she manages to break through and start digging through the dirt, much like the Bride escaping the coffin in Kill Bill.

She reaches the surface and spends a few minutes reflecting on the past. Finally she gets up and walks towards a castle and busts through the doors. The music and conversation stops and everyone turns around and stares and Darian flips his shit and yells her name and runs over to grab her in a hug and, remarkably, nobody freaks out because they think she’s a ghost. Aurora is happy to see her and then Roswell walks up.

Our gazes met for only a second I sat down my lovely daughter as I wrapped my arms around the one man I had ever truly desired and kissed him with such passion I thought I might explode (loc. 4211).

They give her food and catch Harlow up on recent events, and finally she goes to bed with Roswell. Instead of having sex they “cocoon”, which I assume is an ancient, pre-spoon version of spooning, while Harlow angsts about her past, and wonders why she didn’t just have Jafar’s children.

In the morning Roswell asks if he gave her something – like a small wolf carving – would she consent to marry him. Harlow “stairs” at the ring. No, Breeanna, that is not the right word. Harlow agrees to marry him, though. They decide to get married in August because there’s a lot of flowers blooming in August.


August was here before we knew it. I was being fitted for my tux only three days before the date. It was to be the thirteenth of the month (loc. 4254).

The modern tuxedo had its origins in the 1880s, how did it also exist 200 million years ago?


Walking into the hall where we were to be married, I shuttered with anticipation (loc. 4260).

At times I feel like I’m beating a dead horse with this, but seriously, what the fucking actual fuck, Breeanna? Finding proofreaders is not all that hard, and when it comes to self-publishing, they’re really fucking important. Shuttered =/= shuddered.

There are five more typos in this paragraph alone, and we get into the wedding. Nothing really happens, although for Harlow, it’s pretty fucking awesome. Afterwards, it’s even better:

He pushed me onto the bed, fierce, but genital (loc. 4276).

I’m guessing that she intended the word to be “gentle”, to which I can only say: Best. Typo. Ever.

As he did so, I ripped off his shirt and slipped off my white booties (loc. 4276).


They hook up and it’s pretty awesome. Two weeks later, Rowan and Darian get married as well. They look amazing.

The morning after, a note was found in the room they were meant to share, telling their tale. They had slung weights over their shoulders then hand and hand walked into the oceans formed by the Second Demon War. One hundred feet under they sat chained to the sandy floor, wrapped in each other’s arms, together for all eternity (loc. 4292).

I can only assume this is plagiarized from something, because if not, it’s an idiotic suicide pact completely out of left field without any buildup or character development to suggest its occurrence.

Harlow has another son, Demetrious. Aurora doesn’t like him because he’s a dick, although Harlow doesn’t understand why until they’re both teenagers and Demetri almost shoves Aurora off a cliff. Hmmm. You’d think Harlow would notice previous attempts at siblicide, but apparently she’s not the sharpest knife in the drawer. She yells at Demetri, but he doesn’t have an excuse.

Aurora decides to become an immortal, and becomes close friends with Demetri which is great considering he tried to murder her. Then Demetri dies from a sickness that has no name. Roswell and Harlow grow old together and eventually he bites the dust. Seven years later, Harlow’s son visits her for the first and the last time.

Drinks: 55

Tagged as: ,


  1. LoneWolf on 14 May 2014, 02:43 said:

    See? I told you that we haven’t finished with the weird stuff yet!

  2. yaay, a Ñämé on 14 May 2014, 07:37 said:

    This went past weird into the “what the hell is that no don’t get closer nope nope” zone of “IDKtheF-ck is going on”.

  3. swenson on 14 May 2014, 09:14 said:

    Somewhere along the way, I lost what this story is even about. Is it about anything? I’m really unclear.

  4. LoneWolf on 14 May 2014, 10:54 said:

    It started as a usual soap opera about a young woman kidnapped by an evil prince in a quasi-medieval setting, but quickly, um, expanded its scope to time-traveling teams, mystical books of evil, background villains with names of mild-mannered accountants who cause a strangely-minimalistically described war with demons from hell, and more.

    What I also find somewhat intriguing is the slightly melancholy mood in the whole narrative. This makes it all even stranger.

  5. sanguine on 14 May 2014, 19:42 said:

    I’m with swenson on this one. It’d be nice if I could get a grasp of the genre, never mind the characters. Who the hell is Judah? Is Xanthippe a person, a place, or a unit of time? Can Xanthippe get to Xanthippe in a Xanthippe? Where the hell are they? What is the plot?

  6. LoneWolf on 14 May 2014, 21:43 said:

    Judah is Harlow’s son and Aurora’s brother.
    Xantippe is a person. He’s the leader of the time-travelling team, who collected people all over the timeline in order to defeat the Forces of Evil ™.
    They are on Pangaea, which has just split because of the demon armies of hell, who invaded the world (their invasion has some sort of connection with a horrible tome of evil, which Xantippe wanted to destroy, being destroyed… I’m not sure of the details).

  7. sanguine on 15 May 2014, 01:25 said:

    Okay, thanks for clearing that up. I’m assuming you read the book yourself. By the way, have they always been on Pangaea? How and why does anything in this story happen if they’re on Pangaea, and when is the true setting revealed?

  8. LoneWolf on 15 May 2014, 04:07 said:

    No, I’ve only read the sporking and some excepts available at Google Books.

    Yes, all the action in the story (except flashbacks-to-the-future which show the time travelers collecting the special people) takes place on Pangaea. The main plot (with Harlow, and Jafar, and Roswell and such) begins in mythical pre-history, millions of years ago, on Pangaea, before the continents got themselves divided. Apparently, in the universe of this book, Pangaea was inhabited by humans and had its own civilization.

    I think the setting taking place on a mythical version of Pangaea is revealed only on this chapter, as a sort of surprise (else Rorschach would’ve mentioned it before). As you know, this book isn’t big on explaining things.

  9. VikingBoyBilly on 15 May 2014, 08:36 said:

    So is that the end? We just saw Harlow’s marriage (which we didn’t need to, because the main plot was done), Demetri got manifested into the story only to die on the next chapter (he was such a necessity to the story)… the continents split? I guess that’s the big climax it’s been building up to, that and Harlow rising from the dead because the story absolutely needs her to be alive to give birth to demetri who just dies? Okay. And she gets old and Roswell dies. So what’s left? Why does Harlow wonder why she didn’t have Jaffar’s children when she did? That makes no sense.

  10. The Smith of Lie on 16 May 2014, 07:45 said:

    I think that the most underlying part of the problem with At First Glance is that the plots don’t really mesh together, at least as they were shown here (and I’ve read enough or Rorshachs sporks to trust his summation).

    Harlow’s (by the way, I finally tracked the source of my nautical association – Harlaw isles from ASOIAF) story has no logical crossing point with time travel plot through too much of the book and when finally the plots meet, they don’t converge but instead collide.