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paula_02912
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

Karen, I think that the first chapter definitely brings forth a lot of questions about what will happen in the book as we go through the chapters...I also notices how the narrator made reference to time and wondered what kind of role it would play...I also wondered why Vivi left home and has been gone for 40 years...

I think the mentioning that she does not look at herself in the mirror, might be an indication that she does not like the person she is, physically...maybe...or she can't accept who she is...I got the sense that she was a reclusive type because she always talks about watching what is going on outside..
Peace and love,
Paula R.

"Adversity causes some people to break, but causes others to break records."

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LizzieAnn
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

I wonder if that is just Ginny's doing.  It could be indicative of her holding herself aloof from emotions.
 


MelissaW wrote:

 
I also wondered why Ginny and Vivian called their parents by first name and not Mom and Dad. 



Liz ♥ ♥


Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested. ~ Francis Bacon
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HannibalCat
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Registered: ‎10-25-2006
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out



Everyman wrote:
The very chapter heading interesting. (And even more interesting is that you chose to hyphenate it in the subject line, whereas in the book it's the single word.)

Lookout. Look-out. Look Out!

It offers me multiple meanings all of which may inform the story as it moves forward.

Lookout refers to the physical location of the lookout position, which is physically described for us with suggestions of an ancient lookout tower such as might have been used before the days of radar, radio, telephones, etc. to watch for an enemy coming across the ocean or the moors.

It refers to the act -- really the process -- of looking out for her sister.

But there seems to me also an undertone -- or perhaps an overtone -- of "Look out" as in watch out, something bad is about to happen. What one shouts when a car is bearing down, or a tree is falling, or a foul ball is sliced into the crowd. A sense of imminent danger requiring some defensive action.




Great observation. I certainly noticed the use of that word, but did not dissect it as you did. Certainly opens up avenues of thought. Look out also reflects the fact that she has not been outside of her home often. She has to look out of the window to view the outside world. Plus, I agree she seems to be afraid of something. Why does she feel she is about to be judged? So she is looking out for her sister, Look Out! for her sister. Makes me wonder what she has to be afraid of from her sister?
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Laurel
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

Not much surprises me any more about how people act. If you just read the human interest stories in a newspaper you see many real-life things odder than this.

Everyman wrote:
. . . What person just decides to move back to a home they left fifty years ago and it seems haven't been back to since? . . . This aspect of the story seems unrealistic to me. I am willing to suspend disbelief when reasonably required, but I'm finding it hard to swallow this as a realistic way human beings act.




"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
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Laurel
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Which sister?

Nice point, Peppermill.

Peppermill wrote:
I am curious as to which sister is going to turn out to be "The Sister" of the title -- or whether that will remain ambiguous.


"Truth must of necessity be stranger than fiction, for fiction is the creation of the human mind, and therefore is congenial to it." ~~G.K. Chesterton
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dhaupt
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

Karen,
my first thoughts of the book were how well it's written. I think it's obvious that our author isn't a novice at the art, and also I like the way she tells the story.
I also wonder what the significance of time will prove to be in our story.
I get the feeling that our narrator is just a little "off", I guess we'll find out later if I'm right.

Deb
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Peppermill
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

[ Edited ]

Everyman wrote:
What do people make of the comment that their childhood was "in perfect balance"? (page 5) I don't know what this phrase might mean -- what is an unbalanced childhood? What is she implying? Why is this point made here?


I found the phrase awkward. For me, a clue is in the following words "so I'm wondering what it was that came along and changed everything," seemingly implying that things that were okay are going to become "unbalanced" -- whether in childhood or later, I don't yet know. For me, the words left a feeling of foreboding. This is also where I don't know whether to trust the narrator -- were things EVER really okay becomes a question below the surface.

Message Edited by Peppermill on 03-03-2008 02:11 PM
"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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kmensing
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

This opening chapter left me wanting for more.  If this sister is the more level headed, why is she worried about being judged by Vivi?  Is this sister a hermit?  and why?  What shames her so much she doesn't look into a mirror often, or is this just something she gave up after years of being alone.  I like the fact that her family has been in the house for generations, and am looking forward to hearing more about the house's history. 
 
Pg 5--"it was a childhood of perfect balance...."
 
So why the 50 year separation??????
 
Let's read on....
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carriele
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

I had just a couple of thoughts about the first chapter.  The first was I am really curious as to why Vivi is now coming home for good.  I wonder what exactly has happened that has prompted this action.  The narrator seems to insinuate that she is used to and more comfortable being alone which would seem to indicate that it is Vivi's choice to come home.  Could it actually be that there is something wrong with the narrator that we are as of yet unaware of that enticed Vivi to come home?  Also, I am bothered by how nervous the narrator is by the arrival of her own sister.  I wonder why she is in such fear of being judged?  Finally, I can't wait to find out why the narrator believes that the incident at the bell tower might have been the one thing that "came along and changed everything". 
 
Carrie E.
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LisaMM
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out



dhaupt wrote:
Karen,
my first thoughts of the book were how well it's written. I think it's obvious that our author isn't a novice at the art, and also I like the way she tells the story.
I also wonder what the significance of time will prove to be in our story.
I get the feeling that our narrator is just a little "off", I guess we'll find out later if I'm right.

Deb




I so agree. Poppy Adams is brilliant. Also agree that our narrator is a bit off.
www.lisamm.wordpress.com
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paula_02912
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

Melissa, I wondered the same thing as I was reading...
Peace and love,
Paula R.

"Adversity causes some people to break, but causes others to break records."

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ELee
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Registered: ‎10-26-2006
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Re: Time frame



Laurel wrote:
"...you could easily end up living in a completely erroneous time frame." --p. 4

I'm wondering whether that is what she is already doing.

I would tend to agree with you.  She seems very concerned with living her life in actual time.  Oddly, the very reasons she gives for needing to be sure of the correct time - living alone in a house one rarely leaves that is more rarely visited - would seem to be the very reasons why it would not be important to be so conscious of time. 
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ginger81
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

I agree. I believe Vivian, throughout her life, has played the role of being the person on the outside looking in.
 
I had not thought about the title of the chapter - LOOKOUT! I believe that Ginny's coming home is going to involve all three meanings of the word.
 
Will we find out why they did not nor do not call their parents mom and dad?
 
 
GW
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paula_02912
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Re: Time frame

ELee wrote: "I would tend to agree with you. She seems very concerned with living her life in actual time. Oddly, the very reasons she gives for needing to be sure of the correct time - living alone in a house one rarely leaves that is more rarely visited - would seem to be the very reasons why it would not be important to be so conscious of time."

ELee, I agree with you...this preoccupation with time is very puzzling...she has clocks, at least two, in every room of the house, so she can always know what the correct time is...does this obsession with time mean that sometimes she "loses" time and has to figure out what is going on when she "finds" it again? Do you think that the narrator lives alone by choice or because of circumstances? Does this concern about living in actual time suggest that she often does not live in actual time? If yes, is it the distant past, a few months, weeks, days or hours ago?
Peace and love,
Paula R.

"Adversity causes some people to break, but causes others to break records."

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sbrinkley
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

 i also would like to know why the sisters call the parents by the first name. i am also wondering if maybe futher into the book if it would tell why it seems ginny stopped living her life, but got depressed to bad when vivi left home. and find out why the older sister lived through the younger sister
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trolycar
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

I personally find this first chapter hard to discuss after having read the second they go together like gloves to a hand. But honestly it seems she has made the house her life and the window in which she looks out is her eye to the world thus the reason she initially doesn't even notice herself.
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paula_02912
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

Everyman wrote: "What do people make of the comment that their childhood was "in perfect balance"? (page 5) I don't know what this phrase might mean -- what is an unbalanced childhood? What is she implying? Why is this point made here?"

Everyman, I think that their childhood being "in perfect balance" could mean that their lives were intertwined and one of give and take...they balanced each other out in the sense that they were both different sides of the same coin, so to speak...one was more serious (heads) and the other more playful (tails)...just a thought...it could also mean that they were in a home with a nuclear family, both parents playing the typical role that is expected...just tossing out ideas here...
Peace and love,
Paula R.

"Adversity causes some people to break, but causes others to break records."

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noannie
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

I feel that Ginny has lived alone for so long she is a recluse and very paranoid of other people. She likes to watch others but does not become involved in anyway with people around her. She is expecting her sister Vivi to judge her when she arrives at the family home. She is very eccentric. This book was a lot darker than I thought it would be, but once you start reading you cannot put it down.
 
noannie
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paula_02912
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out

trolycar wrote: 'I personally find this first chapter hard to discuss after having read the second they go together like gloves to a hand. But honestly it seems she has made the house her life and the window in which she looks out is her eye to the world thus the reason she initially doesn't even notice herself."


trolycar, I agree with you..it is hard to discuss once you have read all five chapters because so many initial questions get answered...I like the reading you made above too...the window seems to be her "protection" from the outside world...she wants to see, but remain unseen...makes you wonder why this is the case...has she spent her life, up until this point, living her life this way?

Going along with your reading of the house being her life, then the things inside the house would also be a representation of her as well...I think you should post this comment again as we get to the threads for 3 through 5...I think that the responses would be very interesting...
Peace and love,
Paula R.

"Adversity causes some people to break, but causes others to break records."

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Peppermill
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Re: Chapter 1: Look-out


sbrinkley wrote {ed}: ... I also would like to know why the sisters call the parents by the first name. ....

Since I am aware of a number of professional families where this occurs, please say more about why this seems so important to the story. Several have already called out this anomaly. Perhaps because, with other information, it may imply an estrangement of some sort from the parents? Or ....?
"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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