Week 3: The Cloud Roads Read-Along

The Cloud Roads Read-Along banner

We’re starting a new Read-Along this week, with The Cloud Roads by Martha Wells! If you’re interested in participating, visit the SF/F Read-Along group for more information and to join the discussion.

With thanks to Anya for the read-along banner!


Moon has spent his life hiding what he is — a shape-shifter able to transform himself into a winged creature of flight. An orphan with only vague memories of his own kind, Moon tries to fit in among the tribes of his river valley, with mixed success. Just as Moon is once again cast out by his adopted tribe, he discovers a shape-shifter like himself… someone who seems to know exactly what he is, who promises that Moon will be welcomed into his community. What this stranger doesn’t tell Moon is that his presence will tip the balance of power… that his extraordinary lineage is crucial to the colony’s survival… and that his people face extinction at the hands of the dreaded Fell! Now Moon must overcome a lifetime of conditioning in order to save and himself… and his newfound kin.

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Week 1 – Wednesday September 7th: Chapters 1-5 – hosted by CoolCurry (Sarah)
Week 2 – Wednesday September 14th: Chapters 6-10 – hosted by Lisa
Week 3 – Wednesday September 21st: Chapters 11-15 – hosted by Anya
Week 4 – Wednesday September 28th: Chapters 16-20 – hosted by Imyril


1. Things between Pearl and Jade are getting even more tense. Do you think Pearl is lying about Jade using Moon? How do you think this conflict will end?

Mogsy: I don’t think Pearl is necessarily lying about Jade, but rather she senses how vulnerable and confused Moon is right now and sees this as the perfect opportunity to screw with him, taking advantage of these uncertain times to plant seeds of doubt in his head. I feel that Jade’s feelings towards Moon are sincere and she genuinely cares for him, but there are plenty of good reasons why she might not want to take him as a consort at this time (least of all the reality that they all might soon be killed by the Fell).

2. We found out a lot about Moon’s past with the Fell. What do you think of Kathras’ statement that the Fell would have loved Moon?

Mogsy: That line did strike me as strange at the time, but I think I just dismissed it as a taunt to get Moon riled up. But now that you mention it, I’m thinking back to the demands that Pearl said the Fell made of her regarding the breeding of their two species. Since consorts are the only ones capable of having clutches with queens, and Moon is a consort, the implications behind Kathras’ statement become much more awful and telling.

3. Speaking of Fell, it sounds like they have some strange powers that haven’t been seen before. What do you think is going on there?

Mogsy: Something’s definitely going on with the Fell, but I’m not sure what it is yet. I’ve always known they have their “hive mind” powers, but this is clearly a time of great change for both the Raksura and the Fell and I’m curious to find out the cause of all this upheaval.

4. The Fell poison seems like the last chance Moon has of saving Indigo Cloud. Do you think it’ll work? How do you think the final conflict will play out?

Mogsy: Using the Fell poison seems like a sound idea, but you know what they say about best laid plans. I have a feeling the poison will still come into play, but things are going to go awry and the Raksura will have to deal with some hitches along the way. You just know it can’t be that easy.

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