How John Taylor Surprised Me With His Beliefs About Good and Evil -- A Review of Paths Not Taken (Nightside #5)

— feeling shocked
Paths Not Taken - Simon R. Green


My Thoughts


The first instance ever that I have read the words jet-black describing the MC's mom's hair. The thing with jet-black is that while I have heard it used quite often in my family, I haven't heard it or read it anywhere else. We use it to describe a shade of black darker than black and shiny. Maybe I found this word because this book was written by a British author and not an American one. Could be that this word is one of the vestiges left behind by the British from their time in the Subcontinent.


New word learned: Suppurate

When I looked it up, it meant:




I also made the mistake of searching for images associated with this word. My advice to you? Never be that stupid! *shudders for the tenth time*


"...Lilith frowned, concentrating, and spoke another Word. ...Lilith gave birth to the Nightside through a single effort of Will and determination."


I don't know about the other religions but in Islam, when God wanted to create the world, He spoke one word. He said, "Be" and so the world was. Which is why, it was unsurprising that the scene with Lilith's creation of Nightside seemed quite familiar.


Some parts of the book read beautifully. A few of my favorites, with some background for reference, follow:


"Because Good and Evil and consequences have a way of creeping in, whenever people get together." That is why, according to John, Lilith seeks to destroy the Nightside she created.


According to the angels who show up, they take forms that human minds can comprehend. The pair in question shows up when the MCs go back to a time when humans had yet to be born.

 "Neither angel had much of a personality, as such. Presumably that would come later, after centuries of interaction with Humanity."


"To stay would be contrary to our orders," said Gabriel. "And in many ways, we are our orders.

This is pretty close to what I have been taught about angels.


"I couldn't let her die because of something she hadn't done yet and might never do.... Making decisions like this is what Humanity is for."


There was a whole bit at the end about Good and Evil that I found really fun to read. It fit in nicely with my mood these days since I was also reading Plato and a Platypus Walk Into a Bar: Understanding Philosophy Through Jokes at that time.


What was just a teensy bit off-putting was the romance between John and Suzie Shooter.



Since I had done some snooping before, I did know that it was going to happen. It isn't that they don't make a good couple either. I guess it still managed to surprise me.  



The trademark humor was a part of this book in the series too but it was still darker than the previous ones. A favorite scene with the unflappable Cathy:


"Oh, Security!" said Cathy. A closet door I hadn't noticed before sprang open, and a huge and impressively hairy hand shot out of the closet and wrapped itself firmly around both the invading Eamonns. They struggled fiercely against the great gripping fingers, but with their arms pinned to their sides, they were both quite helpless. They shouted and cursed until I strolled over and gave them both a brisk warning slap round the back of the head. A thought struck me, and I looked back at Cathy.

"Can I ask what's on the other end of this thing's arm?" "I find it best not to ask questions like that," Cathy said, and I had to agree with her.


I did enjoy returning to Nightside. Can't wait to read the next one!