The shape of SCOTTISH PRISONER
It's a very _balanced_ book, I'd say. I told my UK editor that it's shaped like a ziggurat, with a double rainbow over it. <g>I always find these descriptions of the "shapes" of Diana's books fascinating. Some of you may recall that we had an in-depth and very interesting discussion about the caltrop on ECHO's cover on Compuserve about a year before that book came out.
Which is to say, Jamie and Lord John each has a complete arc. The motivations--and hence the arcs--are different, but they support each other.
So, what's a ziggurat? I picture it as looking something like this:
(That's the Ziggurat in Sacramento, California. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.)
Something like a pyramid, only constructed in stages, with each successive layer smaller than the last, like the tiers of a wedding cake.
I like this image a great deal as a metaphor for Jamie and Lord John's friendship, which will have to be rebuilt literally from the ground up in THE SCOTTISH PRISONER, after what happened between them in the stable scene near the end of BROTHERHOOD OF THE BLADE.
My first reaction is that a ziggurat is a structure with a solid foundation, built to last for a very long time -- much like John and Jamie's friendship. <g>
It also occurs to me that a ziggurat is not as smooth as a pyramid -- there will no doubt be problems, conflicts, misunderstandings, arguments along the way <g> -- but it's still solid and enduring.
Not sure what to make of the rainbows, yet, except as two separate story arcs, one for Jamie and one for Lord John.
What about the rest of you? Any thoughts on what this shape might mean? The discussion on Compuserve is here if you're interested.