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DSaff
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7 (My thoughts)

Nice post, Amanda. I'm glad you have the Library to post from, and hope that your line is fixed soon.  :smileywink:

 


Amanda-Louise wrote:

 

Amanda (who had her contractor cut her internet line and is writing from a library computer so all mistakes are totally not my fault this time!)


 

 

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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LeeKNY
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

I agree that Mike's actions and life is tied up with that of his past experience with his father.  It seems as if Mike wants to balance the cruelty of his father towards nature by being a protector of  same.  Mike seems to have problems giving himself credit for his own actions as if he is continually trying to atone for the sins of his father and cannot quite do so.

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Zyna
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7


What is Mike Bowditch like? What about his father?

 

Mike is an honest guy, who loves his job and spending time in the wilderness. He is sort of an introvert, who prefers being alone rather than expecting others to understand his affinity for nature. I feel that at times, he is very naive when it comes to certain people and situations. His father, on the contrary, is a tough and sometimes wild man who nobody except Mike doubts is capable of murder. 

 

What are the romantic relationships like that have been described this far into the novel? What was Mike's relationship with Sarah like?

 

So far in the novel, Mike's relationship with Sarah and Jack's relationship with Mike's mother have been described. I think that the two relationships are very similar to each other in the sense that both Mike and Jack enjoy being outdoors, much to the lack of understanding from their respective counterparts. Sarah had much disdain for Mike's choice to become a Game Warden rather than becoming a lawyer, and this resulted in their split up. Mike explains that this is probably why he, like his father, enjoys drinking so much. 

 

How do Mike's attitudes so far seem similar to and different from the people around him?

 

Like the other Game Wardens, Mike is very determined and dedicated to his job. He clearly enjoys his work (you'd have to to be willing to work for that salary!). While everyone else in the novel seems to be convinced that Jack Bowditch is completely capable of murder, Mike is the odd one out. In comparison to everyone else, he is somewhat naive in this sense, and I feel that because of this, he is just waiting to be let down time and time again by those he thinks he can look up to. Benedict Arnold, a childhood hero of Mike's, is a perfect example.

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poirotNY
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

 I think Mike is driven to suceed on his own terms. He wants to do well in spite of the future others want for him. He really is more like his father than he would ever admit or realize, but wants to succeed in spite or to spite him.

 

I agree that is seems that Mike became a Game Warden to make up for what his father had done in the past to at make up for the mistakes of the past.

 

I also think Mike has tried hard to do what he perceives is the right thing all his life, and may find peace with nature. 

 

I think as the story goes on, there will be a lot more going on.

 

Donna

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LastWord
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

What are your early expectations for the story? What has shaped your sense of what to expect?

 

I had no idea what to expect. I'm enjoying the book, even though it is not the kind of mystery I typically read. I usually go for mysteries in urban settings (Michael Connelly, Lawrence Block) but I'm finding this a refreshing change.

 

I'm intrigued by the story of the missing German POW and I assume that since this appears in the opening, it will come up again later in the book. The one thing I was surprised about was the fact that the author keeps the reader at a real distance from the murders. Mike only hears about it secondhand, which made it feel pretty remote to me. But I suppose that the story is really about Mike and his father. 

 

I have to say that I absolutely love the bear subplot. That is my favorite aspect of the book thus far.

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gincam
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

What is Mike Bowditch like? What about his father?

 

Mike carries the weight of his damaged father and distant mother's disastrous marriage heavily on his shoulders. She later remarries someone as unlike his father as possible. Mike is a good person, but he feels detached from everyone around him, especially those who care the most about him. Unlike his rogue father, Mike follows the rules to the letter, trying to find a meaning and structure for his life. Despite the harsh realities that he has observed, Mike tries to hold on to good thoughts about each of his parents.

 

What are the romantic relationships like that have been described this far into the novel? What was Mike's relationship with Sarah like?

 

There is little normalcy in these relationships. There are dependents and enablers. What is between Mike and Sarah is real, but very fragile.

 

How do Mike's attitudes so far seem similar to and different from the people around him?

 

Mike refuses to accept the possibility that his father is much more of a monster than he ever imagined. He is holding onto a child's image of his parent, and therefore he is outcast from almost everyone with whom he has contact.

 

What are your early expectations for the story? What has shaped your sense of what to expect?

 

This is a very well-paced story which propels the reader forward without lagging. The characters are nicely defined and fit snugly into the story line.

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Zia01
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

What is Mike Bowditch like? What about his father? He's a loner, a solidary kind of guy. His father I think is nearly the same kind of guy but a lot rougher around the edges.

 

What are the romantic relationships like that have been described this far into the novel? What was Mike's relationship with Sarah like? It seems most of the relationships in this story have ended badly. Sarah wanted Mike to change and in the end left him because he didn't

 

How do Mike's attitudes so far seem similar to and different from the people around him? Everyone around him seems agitated and brash. Mike seems very laid back and calm.

 

What are your early expectations for the story? What has shaped your sense of what to expect? I don't feel I've read enough to really form any expectations just yet. After the reading the 7th chapter it still feels like I've just started. I do expect to be learning a bit about the Maine wilderness though :smileyhappy:

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brennalee
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

What is Mike Bowditch like? What about his father?
Mike comes across to me as a man with a detached yet moralistic view of his life. He does not want to seem to be closely connected with anyone for fear that it will deteriorate and/or destroy any relationship that exists. A prime example of where he would get this kind of view on life is from his father, who is a very rough man, troubled and prone to very destructive to himself and in his brusque demeanor destructive in his relationships with others. I think Mike avoids being involved with others in an attempt to avoid being destructive to others like his father, which in turn ironically is self-destructive and makes him isolated and a loner by choice.

 
What are the romantic relationships like that have been described this far into the novel? What was Mike's relationship with Sarah like?
At this point though there is trouble I feel there may still be a chance for these two to repair the hurt between them. However Sarah would have to make a major concession in not wanting to 'keep up w/ the Jones's' in material concerns and be content with a simpler life. Mike strikes me as a more honest and simple man than some, and I cannot see him leaving his post and following big dreams of being a lawyer. He just does not seem the type.
 

How do Mike's attitudes so far seem similar to and different from the people around him?

Mike seems to have this disconnect from other's around him, as in his sense of duty to his job does not allow him to connect with others. He seems more at ease alone, and not so much in the company of fellow men as his duty is first and foremost to the law. As such, Mike has to behave in a certain manner and present himself as his job and commitment first to everyone. He cant really be 'just Mike', he always has to be the game warden.
 

What are your early expectations for the story? What has shaped your sense of what to expect?

I think knowing Mike never had a close relationship to his father I think he will try anything he can to help him, thereby getting approval from his father for the career path he chose. Maybe this will bring the two of them together and give them a common ground and beginnings of a relationship. I keep believing there will be some self-realization, if not for Mike alone then perhaps his father too.

"Books may well be the only true magic." Alice Hoffman
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T-Mo
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

What are the romantic relationships like that have been described this far into the novel? What was Mike's relationship with Sarah like?

 

The romantic relationships thus far have been tragic, including those of the minor characters such Bud Thompson. What’s unfortunate is that Mike has, as he so pointedly stated, “chosen to be alone.” His emotional disconnect, and the complete disregard he held for his wife’s fears and dreams is sad. I can’t help but wonder why he even bothered getting together with her in the first place. I can understand following your own dreams and living a life that makes you happy but I don’t understand doing it at the expense of your partner. Based on what we have learned thus far regarding Mike and Sarah’s relationship and her leaving, it seems that Mike was completely unwilling to understand and connect with her thoughts and feelings. Further, he just seems too complacent with her leaving. This attitude of Mike’s cast him in a bit of a negative light with me. However, that is not to say that I am completely turned off by him. I’ll be interested to see how the rest of the relationships in the book play out. 

 

What are your early expectations for the story? What has shaped your sense of what to expect?

 

At this point, I’m not sure what I expect of the story. I think maybe Mike and his father will try to build a better bond. And perhaps that will reflect on some of the other relationships in the book. It would be nice if Mike and Sarah could patch things up, but maybe that’s just me wishing for a “happy-ever-after” ending. I certainly finished chapter 7 and had to fight myself to put the book down. Like so many others, I was drawn-in and dying to find out what happens next. I’m curious to see if or how Lieutenant Malcomb will perceive the situation with Jack and in turn, that of Mike erasing the message. 

 

 


Rachel-K wrote:

 

What is Mike Bowditch like? What about his father?

 

What are the romantic relationships like that have been described this far into the novel? What was Mike's relationship with Sarah like?

 

How do Mike's attitudes so far seem similar to and different from the people around him?

 

What are your early expectations for the story? What has shaped your sense of what to expect?

 


 

 

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Lildove3
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

Mike is a very advetnurous kind of guy,which is atributed from his father due to being a true outdoorsman.

Mike can be somewhat soft at times,but calused about otherthings in his personal life.

 

Sarah was the love of Mike's life,but she couldn't handle the fact of Mike's devotion was more to his job than their marriage,which drove Sarah away.

 

Right now it's sort of difficult to determine much expectations,except the hunt is on for Mike's dad, and

he is so determined to prove his innocents of the charges intended. He is not a fan of that Maine police

department.

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T-Mo
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

I too am intrigued by the story of the missing German POW. I think you make a good point in stating that Mike hears about the murders second-hand. And up until this point still doesn’t really have much information about what truly happened. Further, when he tries to talk with Sheriff Hatch to get an idea of what is going on with his father, it turns into an interrogation, with the Sheriff implying that Mike was guilty of destroying evidence. Like I said in my main post, it’ll be interesting to see how Mike’s Lieutenant adds to the situation. 

 


LastWord wrote:

What are your early expectations for the story? What has shaped your sense of what to expect?

 

I had no idea what to expect. I'm enjoying the book, even though it is not the kind of mystery I typically read. I usually go for mysteries in urban settings (Michael Connelly, Lawrence Block) but I'm finding this a refreshing change.

 

I'm intrigued by the story of the missing German POW and I assume that since this appears in the opening, it will come up again later in the book. The one thing I was surprised about was the fact that the author keeps the reader at a real distance from the murders. Mike only hears about it secondhand, which made it feel pretty remote to me. But I suppose that the story is really about Mike and his father. 

 

I have to say that I absolutely love the bear subplot. That is my favorite aspect of the book thus far.


 

 

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EiLvReedn
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

Early chapters,  I was starting to think that Mike Bowditch was a very unlucky guy. His Dad was/is a loser, his Mom moved away from what he knew, his wife has left him and he can't seem to get a break even from the people he works with. He seems like someone who has the inner struggle of wanting to be loved, wanting to belong but has had such a bad experience in life he can't. He also seems to be sort of bull headed as there was some good advice given him and he won't listen. I can see why his relationship with Sarah is so hard. Of course it seems like she didn't fully understand what to expect either and they didn't work that out b/4 they were married. Big mistake. My sense of what to expect is that Mike is going to get deeper and deeper into trouble even though deep down he really is a good guy and has seen the bad example of his Dad so should want to try to do the opposite of him and he should just turn his Dad in, but he can't because he also wants to be loved so much. I feel sorry for Mike as so many people are judging him to be like his father.

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vpenning
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

 


nbmars wrote:

What is Mike Bowditch like? What about his father?

 

Mike has a love of the Maine woods that I think is conflated with his love of his father.  The only time he ever spent with his father, whom he had idolized as a child, was in the woods.  To me the father seemed like a not very nice person, but to Mike, even when he saw his father do less than admirable things, he made excuses for him, and emphasized traits that conformed with his hero worship.

 

Mike, unlike his father, seems to have grown up to be the man he wanted his father to be:  someone with a fierce love and appreciation of the wilderness but combined with a strong morality and sense of responsibility.


 


I agree with this statement. I think that Mike is trying to be like his father, but at the same time, he still wants to be different from his father.

 

I think that is one reason that Mike does not believe his father is capable of the murder, but does think that there is more behind the anger and the events that have transpired.

 

I am curious as to who the man in the bar was that raised his glass and the father went over to speak with...I feel this will come into play later as the mystery unwinds.

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ms_linda
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

I like many others on here had a hard time putting the book down after chapter 7 but I'm determined to keep to the schedule! I think Mike is similar to his father although he sees himself as opposite. He talks about becoming a game warden to make up for what his father has done. Mike also seems to view himself as an outsider and more comfortable by himself as in his scene with the locals in the restaurant. As far as his relationship with Sarah, I don't think he ever felt it would really work out since he knew from the beginning that he never had any intention of being a lawyer. I think Sarah had hoped for him to change and compromise but that was never going to happen.

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emmagrace
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

In these first chapters, Mike seems like a loner. He seems to appreciate the simple life. I could tell that he enjoys his job even though it is sometimes tough. He has a rocky relationship with his father, but he wants his fathers love and respect.  I am not sure about Mike's father just yet. We have not met his character in the first seven chapters, but from Mike's descriptions, I get the impression that he is angry and bitter, most likely from his stint in the military.

 

Mike, like many others so far want to preserve the land and animals and does not want to see any of it sold and developed.

 

I am really excited about this book and I am already finding it hard to stay on schedule! I am dying to find out what is going on! I wonder if we will get to see more of Sarah in the coming chapters?

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nhawkinsII
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

There have been several "romantic" relationships described in the opening chapters of The Poacher's Son.

 

1.  the on-again off-again relationship between Mike's parents over nine years of marriage...the breakdown of their marriage followed by Jack's retreat into the woods and the remarriage of Mike's mother to "a better man than my father could ever be".  

 

2.  the breakup between Bud Thompson and his wife who "had moved out for a while.  But she'll be back before too long"...But when Bud pleads with Mike "You don't need to talk to her, do you", you know Bud's

wife is never returning and there is nothing left of that relationship...not Bud's choice...    

 

3.  Mike's own relationship with his wife Sarah...they don't share common objectives (She wants Mike to be a lawyer..he's happy as the game warden...She wants money...poor is OK with Mike...) Mike knows all of these differences as he tells us his story; yet he is not as honest with Sarah...And I believe Mike expects his marriage will fail...he doesn't "deserve" a home and a life with Sarah.

 

Mike describes his return home from Bud Thompson's as he opens a beer..."two womenless men dousing loneliness with alcohol..I had chosen to be alone...am empty house was what I'd wanted all along even if it had taken Sarah years to realize it."  What he really wanted was to avoid the emotional reality of marriage and to avoid looking too deeply into his own heart/soul. 

 

4. Dot Libby of the Square Deal Diner whose husband had died of cancer...the joke around town was that her husband died of exhaustion trying to keep up with her all those years... 

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Eckwell
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

Mike is a young idealistic lover of the outdoors.  His father has not been a good role model except for helping to instill in Mike the love of the woods.

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JoanieGranola
Posts: 172
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

What is Mike Bowditch like? What about his father?

Unfortunately, Mike is more like his father than he wants to admit. He's happy being a loner living in near exile in the Maine woods. He is guarded because of the conflict in his parents' relationship while he was a child. He's a nice guy, but he has skeletons that he keeps hidden very deeply. His father is selfish and wants people around him to live by his rules. He's not a bad person, he just behaves badly most of the time.

 

What are the romantic relationships like that have been described this far into the novel? What was Mike's relationship with Sarah like?

Mike's parents' relationship was detrimental to both mother and son. It was probably best that his father left, but it created deep scars. Those scars had a role in the deterioration of Mike's own marriage. His guardedness and general nice-guy personality kept him from telling Sarah exactly what he wanted - unfortunately, what he wanted and what she wanted were different things. He's not exactly sad how things turned out, and when the right person comes along, he'll most likely have a successful relationship.

 

How do Mike's attitudes so far seem similar to and different from the people around him?

Mike seems to have a general laid-back attitude and appears not to judge. But we all judge - we just don't always give a voice to our opinions. I have a feeling that he secretly judges certain people and - later in the novel - we'll see the consequences of his judgment in actions he has to take.

 

What are your early expectations for the story? What has shaped your sense of what to expect?

At this point, I'm not sure what to expect. I finished Chapters 1-6 over a week ago and am trying to recall what I read to answer these questions. Based on what I can recall, I'm guessing that it's going to be a long journey for father and son.  Their relationship is based on blood alone because Mike hold no illusions as to his father's character. He is the man he is today because of his father - he wants to be better than him, but secretly knows that they are also similar in some respects. I believe those similarities will come out in the future.

CAG
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CAG
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7


CAG wrote:

I think Mike is a good man who seems somewhat lost. I think he is still stuck on the childhood experiences that shaped him. He wants his father's acceptance and love. He is closed off emotionally with those he cares about. Yet he loves his job and the kind of life he has because of it. He is interesting and complex. I like him.

 

Mike's dad seems to be a difficult man. He is totally into himself and shows little concern for others. I think his problems stem from the war. I don't like him or at least I don't like the way he lives his life.

 

The romantic relationships so far have been negative. Mike is still recovering from his breakup with Sarah and having a hard time understanding what she really needed from him. I think he is very lonely. His parents didn't have a healthy marriage.Their divorce was probably for the better but it has left Mike with certain feelings that are hard for him to deal with-fear of betrayal, trust issues, closing off his emotions, etc.

 

My early expectations for the story are will Mike be able to mend his relationships with Sarah and his father. I want to know more about his father and wonder if he will ever accept Mike for who he is. Mostly I am just curious about the story line and where this is going.


 

I just wanted to add one of the best parts of this book for me is the contrast between Mike and his father. I love the way Paul Doiron tells this story-Mike the Game Warden and law enforcer v. his father the poacher and law breaker. Both characters love the wilderness but treat all that the wilderness is, differently. For example, Mike wants to protect the bear but also the people it comes in contact with and his father seems to view his desire to take from the Wilderness (and society) as his right. I just find that all very interesting and it is one of the things that keeps my interest.

 

Mike's belief that his father is not a killer does not surprise me. I think it would be hard for most of us to see a family member as guilty before we even have a chance to talk to them. For Mike it must be even a stronger urge to defend his father because many seem to assume he is guilty without much thought. I see Mike drawing further and further away from his friends, co-workers and law enforcement until he has found out directly from his father what the truth is.   

CAG
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tab1997
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Re: The Poacher's Son, Early Chapters: 1-7

I have enjoyed the book very much so far, and had a hard time stopping a chapter 7.

 

I think Mike is a lonely person, who likes to be outside and enjoys his job.  Mike likes to be alone, but also misses sarah at the same time.  No matter what anyone tells Mike, he believes his father is innocent.  I would like to know what is up with the escapee also.  So far the relationships have not been good at all, hopefully mike and his father will start a relationship by the end of the book.