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KxBurns
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Hope

Hope is an evolving concept in this story. The hopes of Kim's family and friends (for Kim as well as for themselves) change dramatically over time. What does hope mean to different characters at different points?
 
What form does hope take as the story comes to a close?
 
-Karen
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crimefighter4444
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Re: Hope

this entire novel is based on hope. the mother hoping for the return of her daughter is the main hope of the story. the hope for forgiveness is also interlaced throughout as is evidenced by the refusal of the mother to speak to certain friends of kim. hope plays a big part in the life of kim's sister as she tries to become her own entity as opposed to being referred to as kim's sister. the father is hoping that his wife stops drinking and the wife hopes her husband awakens from his deep sleep. my only hope is that mr o'nan is penning another novel that is so engrossing and believable.
rich bielecki
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Everyman
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Re: Hope

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

Emily Dickinson
_______________
I think, therefore I drive people nuts.
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thekoolaidmom
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Re: Hope

this entire novel is based on hope. -Crimefighter4444 
 
I agree.  I think the one major hope in the book is that there's a hope it could have all been prevented, or predicted, which we find out in the end it was utterly random.  It was definately easier to think Wooze had something to do with it, which would have meant they could have saved her.  A random crazy stranger is unforseeable.
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pheath
Posts: 82
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Re: Hope

At the highest level we see a shift from hope for Kim's safe return to hope for being able to go on with life without Kim.
-Philip
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WhiteHouseQuartet
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Re: Hope



I agree.  I think the one major hope in the book is that there's a hope it could have all been prevented, or predicted, which we find out in the end it was utterly random.  It was definately easier to think Wooze had something to do with it, which would have meant they could have saved her.  A random crazy stranger is unforseeable.


Well said!  It had to bring hope to Ed and Fran to think that maybe she was right there in town...right under their noses.  As a mom, it would be hard to keep hope alive thinking about how vast the world is with a missing child.  She could have been, literally, ANYWHERE...in the whole world.  As I tried to step into the character's shoes, I felt utterly hopeLESS to be honest.
 
Stephanie
Oklahoma 
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ELee
Posts: 418
Registered: ‎10-26-2006
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Re: Hope



Everyman wrote:
...
And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.
...     Emily Dickinson

Hope is the "shock-absorber" for the soul.  Even when you know in your heart and mind that something has gone from you and will never return, hope allows you to paint "what if" pictures until you can deal with the cold reality of its absence.
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DSaff
Posts: 2,048
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Hope



Everyman wrote:
Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

Emily Dickinson

I love this poem! Thanks, Everyman.  :smileywink:
DonnaS =) " Reading is a means of thinking with another person's mind; it forces you to stretch your own." Charles Scribner
"A book is like a garden carried in the pocket." Chinese Proverb
My blog: http://bookworm56.blogspot.com
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DSaff
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Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Hope

Hope is a strong emotion; a living, breathing thing. Dictionary.com defines it as: "the feeling that what is wanted can be had and that events will turn out for the best," and "to feel that something desired may happen." I think that in the beginning, the hope we see is lined with dread. While they are all hopeful that they will find her, there is an impetus to get it done quickly - before something can happen. No one can let hope die because that would mean that they are giving up on Kim. Ultimately, I think that her family simply wants to bring her home. That is a hope lined with grief and reality.
DonnaS =) " Reading is a means of thinking with another person's mind; it forces you to stretch your own." Charles Scribner
"A book is like a garden carried in the pocket." Chinese Proverb
My blog: http://bookworm56.blogspot.com
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kiakar
Posts: 3,435
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Hope



WhiteHouseQuartet wrote:


I agree.  I think the one major hope in the book is that there's a hope it could have all been prevented, or predicted, which we find out in the end it was utterly random.  It was definately easier to think Wooze had something to do with it, which would have meant they could have saved her.  A random crazy stranger is unforseeable.


Well said!  It had to bring hope to Ed and Fran to think that maybe she was right there in town...right under their noses.  As a mom, it would be hard to keep hope alive thinking about how vast the world is with a missing child.  She could have been, literally, ANYWHERE...in the whole world.  As I tried to step into the character's shoes, I felt utterly hopeLESS to be honest.
 
Stephanie
Oklahoma 


You are right. No other word in the dictionary would do!   H O P E.   That could be the title.
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jawilt26
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Registered: ‎10-30-2007
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Re: Hope

Hope becomes something different to the characters in the book there is that initial hope for Kim to come back and her friends and family wanting to do things different and express feelings that they could not do before the disappearance. Hope does evolve though out the book and changes for the main character's.
Jodie A Wilt
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Jennd1
Posts: 75
Registered: ‎01-28-2008
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Re: Hope

In the beginning everyone is hoping to find Kim or that she will come home. As time goes on they hope for new leads or new possibilities, as the search progresses they aren't sure what kind of closure they hope for but they want some and ultimately they hope to find a way to move on with their lives. Kim's friends move on with their lives but Kim becomes sort of unreal to them as time goes on and their lives continue, and they all feel guilty about it in different ways.
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djohns64
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Registered: ‎04-10-2008
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Re: Hope

Hope really is the whole meaning in this story. The hope of finding Kim safe and ready to go to college. Hope changing into how it all could have been different. Maybe they should have kept a closer watch on her life style, her friends and acquaintances. But still the hope of finding her alive. Then the hope of just finding her to say goodbye and have a sense of closure. So they could move on in a stronger marriage and Lindsay growing independent  from her sisters shadow.
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bentley
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Registered: ‎01-31-2007
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Re: Hope


KxBurns wrote:


Hope is an evolving concept in this story. The hopes of Kim's family and friends (for Kim as well as for themselves) change dramatically over time. What does hope mean to different characters at different points?

 

What form does hope take as the story comes to a close?

 

-Karen





Hope is all anybody has in terms of what tomorrow will bring. We all hope for the best in terms of our own lives, the lives of our children, etc. Working hard and preparing for life makes hope easier and maybe a little more predictable. You improve your chances of your hopes being realized. Living in Kingsville was like putting your hopes on autopilot.

If you lose hope in what tomorrow might bring; your soul loses its own life and purpose and drains your energy and inner flame. When hope eternal's flame goes out, many folks just fold up their tent and die. Keeping hope alive that Kim would show up and that everyone would go along as before binds everyone together. They all have a purpose and a reason to get up in the morning.

The problem that could occur is that Fran and Ed could make it more difficult for other family members to grow beyond this life changing event. This could end up killing Lindsay's own spirit and desire to flourish and grow past a horrible life changing event. Lindsay does not need to be destroyed or blocked emotionally.
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vivico1
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Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Hope


KxBurns wrote:


Hope is an evolving concept in this story. The hopes of Kim's family and friends (for Kim as well as for themselves) change dramatically over time. What does hope mean to different characters at different points?


What form does hope take as the story comes to a close?


-Karen



Well this is certainly written as an "end of the book" question Karen lol :smileywink:. I started to read some but when I read about how their hope changed to a different kind after....I stopped! I don't want to know what form hope takes on as the story closes on the first day of discussions! lol! But I will say this about what I think about hope and what they are going through right now. In the book some of us read last month, Belong To Me, this young boy asked a man why this girl would try to kill herself and he says, I don't know, maybe she lost the "ability to hope". I thought that was a fantastic line in that book. Hope is an ability, not just something you have, because you have it. Its an ability you have to exercise to strengthen it, or you can lose it. So, as the book progresses, it will be interesting to see how each character deals with their "ability to hope" and how hope plays out in the story. There, I will stay away from this thread until I finish the book now :smileywink:. Its iffy with the threads on the characters not saying early impressions of Fran or Ed. etc, cause some are talking about them in terms of the whole book I think. Must be cause there are things there not in the first part of the book. But I will "hope" for the best in that area lol.
Vivian
~Those who do not read are no better off than those who can not.~ Chinese proverb
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noannie
Posts: 21
Registered: ‎02-04-2008
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Re: Hope

Hope keeps people going from one minute to the next and one day to the next. Hope keeps love alive. All the characters loved Kim in their own way and they all hoped for her safe return. Hope gives people strength and out of a terrible tragedy the family grew closer.
 
noannie
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mom2alexmegcoop
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Registered: ‎04-12-2008
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Re: Hope

I think in this instance hope was all they could cling to. I found myself hoping through out that things would turn out okay Kim would be found and everything would be fine.
The greatest gift is a passion for reading. It is cheap, it consoles, it distracts, it excites, it gives you the knowledge of the world and experience of a wide kind. It is a moral illumination.~Elizabeth Hardwick
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bookhunter
Posts: 322
Registered: ‎06-09-2007
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Re: Hope

[ Edited ]


KxBurns wrote:
Hope is an evolving concept in this story. The hopes of Kim's family and friends (for Kim as well as for themselves) change dramatically over time. What does hope mean to different characters at different points?
 
What form does hope take as the story comes to a close?
 
-Karen


Ok, stepping out on a limb here and will try hard to be repectful and not offend anyone. 

My experience and definition of hope is tied closely to my Christian faith and my belief that God has plans we cannot understand or see.  That is what allows you to move forward after tragedy--knowing that somewhere, somehow, some good may come of it.

Mr. O'Nan includes the family's church and priest in many of the events in the story.  While I was encouraged to see that the church was reflected as part of the family's life and the small town community, I was a little disappointed that the faith (or lack of, or struggle with) of the family was not dealt with.  There are a few times it is mentioned that Fran or others are praying for safe return, but the whole concept of religion was treated as no more of a plot point that the Giant Eagle.

In my reality, especially my small town reality, my Hope is tied to my faith and my version of this story would show the spiritual struggle of wrestling with God's intent in this whole event.

I guess I really should be glad that the author chose to include the church as part of the community and the search at all!

Another small point of religion in the book is the butterfly necklace.  Butterflies have a strong symbolizism in Christianity and othe faiths as symbols of change and resurection, new life, new hope.  The scenes involving the butterly necklace are especially poignant when read with that in mind.

I know many, many people go through this type of trauma without faith and a faith community at their side, so this is perhaps a reflection of a reality.  Also it is the reality of folks who are part of the church for activities and social connections without a real "relationship" that can bring hope and comfort.

Please don't see my comments as me trying to suggest that you ALL reading this need to repent and turn to God.  That is up to you! :smileyhappy:-
 
Ann, bookhunter


Message Edited by bookhunter on 06-03-2008 02:02 PM
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bookhunter
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Re: Hope

SPOILERS IF YOU HAVEN'T READ THE WHOLE BOOk!!
 
 
What happens when hope ends and has to move to acceptance of the worst?  Is there still hope after that? Someone suggested that HOPE could be a title of the book, but doesn the term apply to the ending chapters?  What hope, if any still is there for the people in the novel?
 
My first answer....the hope that this experience...Fran's activist work in particular...may prevent it from happening to someone else.  That is not hope within the family, maybe, but within the local and larger community.
 
Ann, bookhunter
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KxBurns
Posts: 1,006
Registered: ‎09-06-2007
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Re: Hope

Hi Vivian -- Sorry if that took you by surprise. As you might have read on the Spoiler thread (or in the post with the schedule), the only threads that  do not encompass the whole book are the ones dedicated to groups of chapters: Early Chapters (up now), Middle Chapters (to be posted next week), and Final Chapters (posted on 6/16).
 
All other threads are spoiler alert-free zones. This was an effort to please those of you who expressed last time that you would have preferred to read the book quickly and then discuss it as a whole. The chapter-based threads are for those who like to read in increments and want to avoid spoilers.
 
Hope this clarifies things!
 
Karen
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