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davos

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  • Birthday 10/29/1975

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  1. I would agree that this is a good place to start a reread. For someone wanting to shorten it even more, I would argue with beginning at Turn Coat rather than Changes. While the latter is structurally the watershed moment for the series, there is nearly as much important revelations and events in the former. We introduced to nemisis and the outsiders (actually I think outsiders had been mentioned before but this is where they become major players in Harry's story), Harry finds out that a number of assumptions he had about his history were not completely correct, and the Council gets a major shake-up. Additionally, if one is preparing for the release of Peace Talks, Turn Coat, is the last we see much of the White Council. Yes, they there is a brief scene early on is Changes where WC makes an appearance to show themselves to collectively be dicks even if individual members are cool and we do see several council members in more recent books (the Gatekeeper and McCoy). But, this is last real look at the state of the council as a group. Rashid told Harry that he would make sure his standing in the WC was made right after his return to life, but mostly Harry has been out of contact with the larger Wizard community for sometime. And I have a feeling that the WC is going to be prominent in Peace Talks and that a lot that happened in Turn Coat is going to be relevant.
  2. While Harry defeated Justin, there is a strong possibility that everything was not as it seemed. There was a lot going on that night. Harry was confused, scared, and angry as hell. We already know he assumed Elaine to be dead and was wrong about that. Given Harry's ability to solve complex mysteries but miss what is right in front of his face, there is likely a lot more about those events that he missed. Specifically the Morgan's journal microfiction linked to earlier suggests the possibility that the whole thing could have been staged to fake Justin's death. Though this was always a possibility, its now suggested outright in canon by Jim. Outside of Harry beating him in a fight, I don't recall any specific information that suggests Harry was definitely stronger than Justin (feel free to correct me on this point. I've been through the books twice but its been a few years). Even if that was the case, though, about 20 years, maybe a bit more, have passed. Justin, if still alive, could have taken steps to boost him powers. Scars on his arms could have been acquired during the fight with Harry or latter. I don't think we have enough evidence to eliminate Justin as a suspect for Cowl, though, there is at least one other equally strong possibility, and probably several outside candidates. Regardless of if he is Cowl or not, I am almost certain that Justin will make a personal appearance in the series at some point.
  3. As mentioned by others, he is a candidate for Cowl. Possibly the best candidate. Though his mentor also might fit what information we have on Cowl. And there are a few outside possibilities. What is certain is that there is a lot more to Justin's "death" that Harry is not aware of.
  4. It was well accepted that Magnus had the edge in the tie breakers. I didn't expect him to just dominate Fabi like that though. I haven't had a chance to look through analysis but Fabi may have had chances to at least tie in the first game. Magnus just proved sharper in an end game when both were in time trouble. Outside of that Magnus just was the better player in that format. He was sharp, he was aggressive, and locked onto any advantage available and just kept turning. From the light of right now, it would seem that Magnus was smart to play it safer most of the match and that Fabi needed to try to find more opportunities to press. Carlsen well understood both his strengths and his opponents weaknesses and played the match accordingly. The next cycle is far away, and perhaps Carlsen will slip in that time. If he retains his form, I'm hoping that someone who is more comfortable in shorter game formats is the challenger so that Magnus can't repeat this approach with the same kind of confidence.
  5. Shocked that Carlsen didn't press that position, especially given the kind of time trouble Fabi was in. He had an attack coming that would have been hard for white to find a way through. He's been the dominate force in chess for nearly a decade. He's won 3 world championship matches. You are the best player in the world with a meaningful advantage in a potentially decisive game, you almost need to play it out. To me, he's been a great champion but he's not the player he was 4 years ago.
  6. Game 12 is actually kind of interesting so far. 22 moves in and only 1 pawn from each side off the board. There is a lot of tension and a lot of complexity. There are going to be some fireworks at some point. Right now I like Carlsen's chances better, especially with Fabi being way down in time for having 18 moves to time control in a really involved position.
  7. Game six was insane, with Carlsen finally taking Fabi on in the Petrov. A crazy opening that was half Knight moves, solid middle game that ended with an piece sac give Carlsen a 3 pawn edge, and a intense end game in which Fabi apparently (according to a super computer) missed a 30 move forced mate that no one can quite understand. Still a draw but by far the best game of the match. Game seven was a solid, interesting, but uneventful draw. Fabi is playing well, Carlsen doesn't seem as sharp as he has been, but I still give the edge to the defending champ.
  8. After coming out swinging in the first game, it appears Carsen is now willing to grind things out. Just like working down a small but meaningful advantage into a winning end game, he knows that if it comes down the tie break, that being stronger in the blitz and rapid formats gives him a meaningful advantage. It will be interesting to see at what point Fabi takes a real swing to try to win a game and prevent that from happening. There are going to be fireworks at some point and it almost has to be from Fabi (unless of course Fabi makes an error that Carlsen jumps on).
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