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KxBurns
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PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

I enjoyed the juxtaposition of young and old Grace returning to Riverton, each confronting her past self: "Here and there, then and now, simultaneously, at the capricious whim of time" (p. 425). What are the parallels in their homecomings?

For the remainder of this chapter, we find out some of the terrible aftermath of the incident at the lake. Hannah and Emmeline diverge even in their suffering, but both die tragically soon after the event. The effect of Hannah's death on Grace illuminates her relationship with her own child even more:
"Afterwards, I was broken. Bereft. In an odd way, I had lost myself. That is what happens when you give your life and service to another person. You're bound to them. Without Hannah, I was without function. ...I had no capacity for feeling. Was emptied, just as surely as if someone had slit me open like a dying fish and scraped out everything inside" (p. 439).

Questions remaining after this chapter are:
- what role did Grace's lie of omission about knowing shorthand play in the tragedy?
- is Hannah's daughter Florence the source of Ursula's connection to the story?

Karen
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vivico1
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

[ Edited ]
sorry, edited this myself, talked about something that was actually the next chapter.

Message Edited by vivico1 on 01-14-2008 01:53 AM
Vivian
~Those who do not read are no better off than those who can not.~ Chinese proverb
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dhaupt
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

This chapter was a very emotional one for me, so many secrets outed and so many more not.
I thought it quite good to see that the old house is still taken care of by Mr. Hamilton and Mrs. Townsend and how telling is Grace's response to him that she's tired and he says not too long now. That almost made me cry.
In Hannah's ramblings during her delivery is she really blaming Grace for something and what.
I always knew not knowing shorthand was important in this book, but we still don't know do we.
I do think that Ursula's Florence is Hannah's daughter.
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kiakar
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

I dearly loved it when Grace saw Mr. Hamilton and spoke to him at Riverton, her last visit and he said it wasnt going to be long for Grace to rest.
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Tarri
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

I felt that Ursula was tied directly with the family since early in the book, so I believe that Grandma Florence is Hannah's daughter.

Ruth is happy. It makes me wonder what Ruth was really like.
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crazyasitsounds
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited



KxBurns wrote:

"Afterwards, I was broken. Bereft. In an odd way, I had lost myself. That is what happens when you give your life and service to another person. You're bound to them. Without Hannah, I was without function. ...I had no capacity for feeling. Was emptied, just as surely as if someone had slit me open like a dying fish and scraped out everything inside" (p. 439).



That's exactly what I was afraid would happen to Grace, but I didn't put it together with her experience as a mother until I read this chapter.
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bentley
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited



Tarri wrote:
I felt that Ursula was tied directly with the family since early in the book, so I believe that Grandma Florence is Hannah's daughter.

Ruth is happy. It makes me wonder what Ruth was really like.




Tarri, I felt that way too...especially when they described Grandma Florence. We never got to know Ruth very well in the book; but then Grace was the narrator and the tension she still had with her daughter showed through. However, she has Ruth to thank for Marcus.

Bentley
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GMorrison
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited



Tarri wrote:
I felt that Ursula was tied directly with the family since early in the book, so I believe that Grandma Florence is Hannah's daughter.




I think so as well, and I liked very much that Grace kept this to herself throughout her interactions with Ursula. This is a very different reaction than what one would expect from today's tell-all talk show culture, but very true to Grace's own moral compass. I appreciate that Ms. Morton didn't milk this for easy emotional payoffs, but remained true to her characters.
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Peppermill
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited


GMorrison wrote:

Tarri wrote: I felt that Ursula was tied directly with the family since early in the book, so I believe that Grandma Florence is Hannah's daughter.
I think so as well, and I liked very much that Grace kept this to herself throughout her interactions with Ursula. This is a very different reaction than what one would expect from today's tell-all talk show culture, but very true to Grace's own moral compass. I appreciate that Ms. Morton didn't milk this for easy emotional payoffs, but remained true to her characters.
I presume an implication of this would be that Ursula's son should not be at risk of inherited hemophilia, since Jemima (Gytha's mother), not Penelope (Hannah's mother), is the known carrier in the Hartford family?
"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
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Read-n-Rider
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

Right on, Pepper--astute observation!

Joan
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goingeast
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

[ Edited ]
Does anyone understand why on p434 Grace says..."I tried to talk her round, remind her it wasn't her fault, she couldn't have saved him, but she only looked at me, a bemused expression on her face. As if she didn't know of what I spoke or, worse, doubted my reasons for saying such a thing."

[edited for spoilers by moderator]

Message Edited by KxBurns on 01-16-2008 05:57 PM
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dhaupt
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

[ Edited ]

goingeast wrote:
Does anyone understand why on p434 Grace says..."I tried to talk her round, remind her it wasn't her fault, she couldn't have saved him, but she only looked at me, a bemused expression on her face. As if she didn't know of what I spoke or, worse, doubted my reasons for saying such a thing."

[edited for spoilers by moderator]



I think you have to finish the book before you understand this, it's one of the little tidbits Ms. Morton has continually fed us through out the book that at the end will answer most if not all of our questions. And if you read on pg 438 when Hannah says to Grace "you can't read shorthand" I think this is the most telling statement in the whole book.
Debbie

Message Edited by KxBurns on 01-16-2008 05:58 PM
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vivico1
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

[ Edited ]

goingeast wrote:
Does anyone understand why on p434 Grace says..."I tried to talk her round, remind her it wasn't her fault, she couldn't have saved him, but she only looked at me, a bemused expression on her face. As if she didn't know of what I spoke or, worse, doubted my reasons for saying such a thing."

[edited for sopilers by narrator]


[edited for spoilers by moderator]

Message Edited by KxBurns on 01-16-2008 05:59 PM
Vivian
~Those who do not read are no better off than those who can not.~ Chinese proverb
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goingeast
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

[ Edited ]


Message Edited by goingeast on 01-16-2008 11:52 AM
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goingeast
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

[ Edited ]
I apologize. Except for the remarks on the quotation, my comments above belong in The Tape, not in Riverton Revisited.

Message Edited by goingeast on 01-16-2008 12:13 PM
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BevS
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

The "ghosty" thing at the end of the book kind of turned me off, but still the ending was great and the book was great and I will recommend it to others!
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kiakar
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited

[ Edited ]

BevS wrote:
The "ghosty" thing at the end of the book kind of turned me off, but still the ending was great and the book was great and I will recommend it to others!




[edited by moderator]

Message Edited by KxBurns on 01-20-2008 10:29 PM
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kiakar
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited



Tarri wrote:
I felt that Ursula was tied directly with the family since early in the book, so I believe that Grandma Florence is Hannah's daughter.

Ruth is happy. It makes me wonder what Ruth was really like.





Ruth's character was not developed at all. Not enought for us to reconize at first, she wasnt really a cold person but was deep in thought probably about her son's disappearance.
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kiakar
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited



dhaupt wrote:

goingeast wrote:
Does anyone understand why on p434 Grace says..."I tried to talk her round, remind her it wasn't her fault, she couldn't have saved him, but she only looked at me, a bemused expression on her face. As if she didn't know of what I spoke or, worse, doubted my reasons for saying such a thing."

[edited for spoilers by moderator]



I think you have to finish the book before you understand this, it's one of the little tidbits Ms. Morton has continually fed us through out the book that at the end will answer most if not all of our questions. And if you read on pg 438 when Hannah says to Grace "you can't read shorthand" I think this is the most telling statement in the whole book.
Debbie

Message Edited by KxBurns on 01-16-2008 05:58 PM




So in a way, Hannah is saying to Grace with her bemused expression, you are at fault because you didnt know shorthand. She is blaming Grace for what happened. There was no sudden revelation of truth that hit Hannah before she died. She still didnt realize this was her doing.
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paula_02912
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Re: PART FOUR: Riverton Revisited (MAJOR SPOILER HERE!)

[ Edited ]
BevS wrote: "The "ghosty" thing at the end of the book kind of turned me off, but still the ending was great and the book was great and I will recommend it to others!"

Bev, could you explain why the "ghosty" think at the end turned you off? I am interested in hearing your take on the ending.

[edited for spoilers by moderator]

Message Edited by KxBurns on 01-20-2008 10:31 PM
Peace and love,
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