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ponkle
Posts: 81
Registered: ‎01-30-2009
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

Knowing the ending: What effect does it have on your reading to open the novel with Mary's death presented to us first, and Cobb beginning to tell a ranger about her? Did this capture your attention or repel you, or both? 

"I took it in stride.  Having read too many mystery novels I awaited the potential twists and turns that did not materialize and learned this was a straight-forward telling of a sweet tragic love story."

 

Most love stories begin with complications and reversals, but the love story between Mary and Cobb is absolutely passionate and --relatively--psychologically uncomplicated from the first page. What effect does this have on  you? Do you believe in immediate true love like this one?

"Absolutely.  I am a true believer."

 

What do you make of Mary's nightmares?

"The mystery of the mind"

 

What do you make of Cobb's relationship with Henry David Thoreau? Mary respects his reason for being on this trip. Does she seem to embody any of what Cobb admires about Thoreau? Why do you think this writer is so important to Cobb?

"Cobb is trying to simplify his life.  Teaching and parents impose complications he tries to reject and searches for solace through Thoreau's travels and thoughts."

 

What do you make of the wedding that the Chungamunga girls arrange for them? How seriously do all of them take it?

"I love the Chungamunga girls.  What an awesome inspiration for us all.  Could we all be so lucky to have a tight knit group of support surrounding each of us? Wouldn't that be fantastic?"

 

What do you make of Mary's conditions for Cobb for continuing to be together? Could you know the test results without telling her?

"I despise conditions, rejecting them out of hand; a true dealbreaker."  Unfortunate."

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BambooMom
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Registered: ‎03-13-2009
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

I found that I liked knowing the ending right off the bat. I have been known to read the last few pages of a book before I get there, just to know what direction the author is taking me. By knowing the ending, I can enjoy the journey in between.

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Kittysmom
Posts: 124
Registered: ‎08-31-2009
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

I thought the wedding the Chungamunga girls prepared and carried out for Cobb and Mary was absolutely beautiful and I believe with all my heart that they believe it is true and "eternal on the water"!

 

As for Mary's conditions for her and Cobb to continue to be together, is very hard because I don't know how anyone can really love someone and know they are going to die and not have it show in some way without really meaning for it to!  It's not fair but if he really loves her he will find a way to do it!

"Open a book and the world is yours"
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Teddyree
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Registered: ‎08-12-2009
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

I've just finished chapter 8 and i must admit I'm captivated by the story.

 

Knowing the ending: What effect does it have on your reading to open the novel with Mary's death presented to us first, and Cobb beginning to tell a ranger about her? Did this capture your attention or repel you, or both?

 

 

It didnt bother me, I read a quite a few novels that open in that manner and all it does for me is open up a whole lot of questions so I'd have to say I was intrigued from the start. My initial thoughts on the direction the story was taking changed very early in the story.

 

Most love stories begin with complications and reversals, but the love story between Mary and Cobb is absolutely passionate and --relatively--psychologically uncomplicated from the first page. What effect does this have on  you? Do you believe in immediate true love like this one?

 

I thought the story was a little quirky and unusual to start with and then I got caught up in the descriptive writing and the love story and I'm loving it. Because you know the ending, at the moment, my heart is a little in my mouth about how much time Mary and Cobb are going to get together and how bad things are going to get. I think it's possible that their psychological complications will come as the possible reality of their situation evolves. But of course that's all based on where I am in the story right now and how I think it's going to play out. Yes I believe in love like this, it is probably rare but I like to believe it can happen.

 

What do you make of Mary's conditions for Cobb for continuing to be together? Could you know the test results without telling her?

 

I think Mary has the right to impose conditions, she is still compromising and taking into consideration Cobb's feelings, hence the test. I believe that even with the best intentions of not telling Mary the test results, you would inadvertently be giving Mary an indication of the test results even if it's just on a subconcious level.

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ponkle
Posts: 81
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

One thing I forgot to say before is I think love is unconditional, you love someone no matter what. Now you may not be able to stay with them for some reason but there are no conditions on love

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RNData_GK
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

Knowing the ending somehow heightened my awareness of the story of Cobb and Mary. It somehow made me more attentive to their characters, their relationship with each other, their relationship with others, and how they interacted with each other. It didn't spoil the ending for me. Instead, it helped me understand better the bittersweet relationship between them.

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milkamilka
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Registered: ‎08-24-2009
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

 


Peppermill wrote:

I haven't totally decided whether Monniger's failure to give us rounded characters (both the good and the not so good) in these early chapters (perhaps in the whole book, I'm not through yet) is a weakness or a strength of his writing.  I am inclined toward the latter, since we are listening to a grieving man tell his tale -- in real life, we would hardly expect someone who has had a loving relationship to be spinning out much negative at this point, would we?

 

 


milkamilka wrote:

I just finished with the chapter 8. I really liked these first 8 chapters even though there are some things which really caught my eye. I think that as characters, Cobb and Mary are too perfect. Mary's sickness is only at the background, at least I feel like it, and Cobb has nothing which would make him unperfect. I hope there will be something which will make Cobb a little "darker" character. Right now I just feel like Cobb is "unhuman" and that there are no guys like him in real life; he knows about Mary's sickness and still wants to be with her without doubt etc.

 

I really like the way this book is written. It is well written and at some points I feel like I am reading poetry since some of the words just fit together very well.

 

I am really curious to read on and see what will happen at Indonesia. :smileyhappy:


 

 in real life, we would hardly expect someone who has had a loving relationship to be spinning out much negative at this point, would we?

I did not think the situation like that, that is a good point Peppermill. I am still also wondering are the characters like Mary and Cobb a strenght or weakness, I am also going towards strong since I have liked the following chapters after 8 a lot more. :smileyhappy:


 

 

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Jo6353
Posts: 683
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

Knowing the ending: What effect does it have on your reading to open the novel with Mary's death presented to us first, and Cobb beginning to tell a ranger about her? Did this capture your attention or repel you, or both?

 

I loved the introduction. It intriqued me and I had to know the story of these 2 people.  Why did Mary need to die on the water so much so that her husband was willing to help her with that mission?  I had to find out!

 

Jo

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fordmg
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Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8


dg wrote:

I'm really enjoying the book but I feel like the kissing and lovemaking have become a little overstated.  I'm not sure I would feel that way if the story line was different.  In this story, once it is clear that they've established a physical relationship, it almost seems beside the point.


I think that is the only draw back on an otherwise wonderful book. I don't need a blow by blow description of all the kissing. Leave something to the immagination. MG
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Coffeenut
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

I like the kissing :smileywink: It's cute. IMO, people definitely don't kiss enough, esp. in books. They just go right into the rest.

Me :smileyhappy:
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LoBugs
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

Knowing the ending:It suprised me but I liked that it opened with the ending because it took away the feeling of knowing how the book would end. I thought it would end on a solem note and now I'm not so sure, it might just have an more up beat, feel good ending than I thought.  It also gave you a very unique view of who Mary was in life. What she would like or think, like being tied up like a roast.

 

Do you believe in immediate true love like this one? I think that immediate true love happens, but it is a rare thing.  

 

What do you make of Mary's nightmares? I think that not knowing about her Huntington's has a much bigger effect on Mary than she can admitt. She is constantly looking for signs, something to be wrong.

 

 

What do you make of the wedding that the Chungamunga girls arrange for them? I think that it is thoughtful and creative. How seriously do all of them take it? very seriously, Mary has tears in hers eyes.

 

What do you make of Mary's conditions for Cobb for continuing to be together? She is asking him to carry a very large burnden. I feel that Mary made a very controled life for herself and bringing someone else into it would mean change and chances. Chances that someone else could effect the way she wants to live her life.

 

Could you know the test results without telling her? No, I couldn't keep it to myself. First I've just never been good at keeping secrets and second that would mean that I would have to live life not knowing and I wouldn't be able to live that way. I am a person who likes to know what I'm dealing with and face it head on.

Lobugs
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jaa19221
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

I really like this book. I am usually a very choosy reader, but I was hooked by this book within the first few pages.  I knew it was a love story from the synopsis on the back cover, but from the way it started in the first few paragraphs I never would have guessed it.  I really like how Mr. Monninger draws the reader into the story. It felt like I was right there on the river with Cobb and Mary. There was too much description to weigh down the story, but just enough to include the reader on their adventure.  I am really enjoying this book and cannot wait to finish. I am definitely a fan of Mr. Monninger and any future works.

A room without books is like a body without a soul. ......Cicero





In the case of good books, the point is not how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you. ...Mortimer Adler
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literature
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Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

 


Peppermill wrote:

It is a feeling that started for me with page 1.


dhaupt wrote:

Peppermill wrote:

Did anyone out there not like Cobb?

 

Yes.


dhaupt wrote:

tdunham220 wrote:

I loved Cobb in this book. Even more than Mary. Mary introduces him to so many new experiences that most people would be unprepared for, but he accepts them so willingly because he loves her. I especially love how he never waivered in his desire to stay with Mary when she confessed her illness and the conditions she required of him to stay in her life. I think we all could use a man like Cobb in our life! Did anyone out there not like Cobb?


I LOVED Cobb, too and for the same reasons as you mentioned. He was an unfailingly loyal to Mary no matter the consequences to himself and his feelings about it.



 Ok Pepper, don't let us hanging. Why didn't you like him.


 


 

 

Dear All,

Cobb was very nice, agreeable, easy sort of guy, came across to me as a sort of sensual type and I adore him.  But...from the very beginning what bothered me most was the reason for his sabbatical.  I know he wanted to write about Thoreau and live the same existence that he had lived on the Allagash, but when does he write this paper?  Did he even take notes?  Maybe he did but it just wasn't important to the story or for the readers to know.  Like Thoreau, he wanted to live life simply.  No mention of any of this.  Cobb does mention his motto a couple of times "Hurry gradually" but how gradually before the paper is written?  Yes, there were references to Thoreau but that was it.  On page 28 Cobb said "But I think mostly because he sought something important.  He probably failed at it, but it never deterred him."  I think that Cobb was in a rut and just had to get away and a sabbatical and a Thoreau paper was the ticket. Mr. Monninger staged everything perfectly.  Cobb was on sabbatical, was going to follow Thoreau's life on the Allegash, Cobb was looking for a buddy to do this with but his friends were teachers and the semester had begun and along comes Mary, a perfect traveling buddy.  Cobb had no experience with camping, he had his doubts and even thought he might be out of his element..  He practiced setting up camp in his living room and kept repeating the basics to himself:  travel early, camp early, learn to pace yourself, think ahead.  Mary was an experienced camper, quite the outdoor person, and an environmentalist to boot.  Now he had his buddy.  How else would they get paired up?  Don't get me wrong, if Cobb showed up at my front door, I would take him in without hesitation!



 

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mediamissy
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Registered: ‎08-06-2009
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8


Knowing the ending at the start of the story compelled me to read more.  As I read the beginning I thought, what would bring a person to that point, to want to be let go.  How much love must it require to be able to let a person go, someone you loved so deeply?  Why there?  I was compelled to continue reading to hear a love so deep and so selfless began.    

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dhaupt
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

[ Edited ]

 


literature wrote:

 


 


 

 

Dear All,

Cobb was very nice, agreeable, easy sort of guy, came across to me as a sort of sensual type and I adore him.  But...from the very beginning what bothered me most was the reason for his sabbatical.  I know he wanted to write about Thoreau and live the same existence that he had lived on the Allagash, but when does he write this paper?  Did he even take notes?  Maybe he did but it just wasn't important to the story or for the readers to know.  Like Thoreau, he wanted to live life simply.  No mention of any of this.  Cobb does mention his motto a couple of times "Hurry gradually" but how gradually before the paper is written?  Yes, there were references to Thoreau but that was it.  On page 28 Cobb said "But I think mostly because he sought something important.  He probably failed at it, but it never deterred him."  I think that Cobb was in a rut and just had to get away and a sabbatical and a Thoreau paper was the ticket. Mr. Monninger staged everything perfectly.  Cobb was on sabbatical, was going to follow Thoreau's life on the Allegash, Cobb was looking for a buddy to do this with but his friends were teachers and the semester had begun and along comes Mary, a perfect traveling buddy.  Cobb had no experience with camping, he had his doubts and even thought he might be out of his element..  He practiced setting up camp in his living room and kept repeating the basics to himself:  travel early, camp early, learn to pace yourself, think ahead.  Mary was an experienced camper, quite the outdoor person, and an environmentalist to boot.  Now he had his buddy.  How else would they get paired up?  Don't get me wrong, if Cobb showed up at my front door, I would take him in without hesitation!

 

 


 

 

Yeah I'd take him too, but on the sabbatical part I respectfully disagree with you.

I think that Cobb had every intention of stepping in Thoreau's footsteps, and like you I'm not sure if he did finish the paper, but I disagree about the rut. If he did finish the paper then the author just didn't think it's completion wasn't an important part of the story line, but if he didn't I don't think it was because of boredom etc.. it was simply that life got in the way. He never saw Mary coming and she hit him like a ton of bricks and that's what waylaid the Thoreau paper. In fact I think that's the whole point of the book that life interrupts life.

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lrloveless71
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

Knowing the ending: What effect does it have on your reading to open the novel with Mary's death presented to us first, and Cobb beginning to tell a ranger about her? Did this capture your attention or repel you, or both?  I think it was a great way to start the story…Cobb tells the ranger the story because she is intuitive enough to ask the right questions…it is obvious to here that Mary’s death was not accidental and she is compassionate and understanding as Cobb relives the story of he ad Mary’s love.  I think that her death grabbed my attention right away and made me want to know why and hear more about Mary and Cobb.

 

Most love stories begin with complications and reversals, but the love story between Mary and Cobb is absolutely passionate and --relatively--psychologically uncomplicated from the first page. What effect does this have on you? Do you believe in immediate true love like this one?

I think that some people can find immediate true love, their “Yeti”…I think that it is not possible to find this when you are looking for it. In this story neither Cobb nor Mary where looking for love so there hearts and minds were open to the possibilities.

 

What do you make of Mary's nightmares?

Mary is most likely fearful for what her disease will bring. Her nightmares are representative of that fear of losing control and “forgetting”.

 

What do you make of the wedding that the Chungamunga girls arrange for them? How seriously do all of them take it? I think that Mary and Chungamunga girls took the wedding very seriously, which is why Wally repeats the verse during the “real” wedding.

 

What do you make of Mary's conditions for Cobb for continuing to be together? Could you know the test results without telling her? I respect Mary’s conditions; I would want to live without the fear of “when”. However, I think that that fear manifests itself in Mary’s nightmares. I believe that Mary does “know” somewhere deep insider her that she is positive for Huntington’s disease.

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dleigh
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

First the Chungamunga girl wedding - I found it very important and meaningful that these girls (and Mary as a Chunga girl) take the wedding so seriously.  For many of these girls, this will be the only wedding they get to plan.  The wedding also gives them hope to survive and beat their disease, because if Mary can live long enough to find her one true love, then maybe they can too! The final vow - "Eternal on this water" is so meaningful too. How beautiful that their wedding and love will always be true and immortal on the Allagash.

 

Knowing that Mary does not survive made this story suspensful to me. I couldn't put this book down because I had to know what would happen next or how it would go down.  This made the first 8 chapters very interesting for me!

DH
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dleigh
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

I like how you charactize Mary as "nature" :smileytongue:: therefore when Cobb finds her, he is finding his own personal Thoreau to learn from and to actively experience.  Mary constantly brings Cobb to a simpler way of life, a more Thoreau way of life!

DH
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kboston
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

Most love stories begin with complications and reversals, but the love story between Mary and Cobb is absolutely passionate and --relatively--psychologically uncomplicated from the first page. What effect does this have on  you? Do you believe in immediate true love like this one?

 

I believe in immediate true love, soulmates.  I think it's beautiful that he instantly falls for Mary and doesn't hesitate when he finds out more about Mary.

 

What do you make of the wedding that the Chungamunga girls arrange for them? How seriously do all of them take it?

 

It was a thoughtful, well planned event that the girls took very seriously.

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bookowlie
Posts: 177
Registered: ‎04-15-2008
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Re: Eternal on the Water: Chapters 1-8

Opening the novel with Mary's death certainly grabbed my attention so it's was a good plot device.  However, I am probably in the minority here since I was disappointed knowing right from the beginning that she was going to die.  I like reading a book where I don't know how it's going to end, to have some hope that things will turn out well.  The eternal optimist!

 

Right from the start, the love story between Mary and Cobb is pure and uncomplicated..  In some ways, it did seem a bit unrealistic, especially given their different personalities.  Still, I do believe they had immediate true attraction and the timing was right for both of them to fall in love.

 

I felt Mary's nightmares had everything to with her fears of her illness.

 

I think the Chungamunga girls arranging a wedding for them was very heartwarming.  They have such a tight circle of friendship and support and arranging the wedding was a further expression of their eternal circle of friendship and love.