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nook_newbieLS
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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

Clara tells Gloria, "I'm no more expert on the subject than any other girl. But this much I know: Love is worth everything. If you really love someone, you'll have no regrets. Even if it turns out badly." Do you agree? How might this impact the characters in this story? How do you feel about our star-crossed lovers chances of success? 

 

Gloria and Jerome have a lot of things working against them - not only the bi-racial relationship in 1920's America, but the fact that they will have no choice but to rely on the mob for employment. That rarely turns out well.

 

We also learn that Lorraine did not reveal Gloria's secret to Bastian, even as she does expose Clara's reasons for New York. Did either of these revelations surprise you? Did they change the way you feel about any of the characters?

 

It was actually consistent with Lorraine's behavior. She has been desparate to keep Gloria's affection, so it makes sense that she sabatoged Clara (who she has deemed a threat) and protected Gloria.

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dhaupt
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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

 


Sarah-W wrote:

 

I'm still trying to figure out how Lorraine did all the work to discover that there had been a baby? Who do you suppose knew? Who did she ask? 

AnnieBook wrote:
 
I'm still on the fence about Lorraine.  She's trying so hard to be a good friend to Gloria but you definitely see her evil streak when it comes to Clara.  Her revelation of Clara's past w/ Haris really blew me away!  I did not see that coming!  I'm curious if Clara ever told Haris she had his child?  Or did she hope to hide it and escape NY for a fresh start?

 


I remember reading on page 353 where a drunk Lorraine is announcing to the crowd at the party that she contacted some people from Barnard in New York and she specifically mentioned a friend Shelly who told her all about Harris Brown and his playboy ways. So I'm assuming that Clara made quite a name or shame for herself in NY.

 

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Atreyu59
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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

 And Lorraine reveals Clara's secret to everyone---including the press---at Gloria's engagement party.

 - - - - I felt bad for Raine at the engagement party because she made a total fool of herself & it was evident to everyone what type of person she has become.  She looks like a streetwalker and then her drunken attitude reveled more of her then any of us wished to see.

 


 

If you really love someone, you'll have no regrets. Even if it turns out badly." Do you agree?

- - - - In my life I find that this outlook is somewhat true, yet it becomes life shaping as an experience but for many of us women - we do move onward and forward; learn from our past lost loves and MOVE on! Sometimes you must have those experiences to make you realize loves gift.  Love can be full of regrets.  There are things in this scenario that Gloria will be regretful about; a forbidden love, a lost that will haunt her for a long time if she chooses to stay with Jerome because of the cultural issues; she will likely regret many things that "could have been" but due to taboo she will not be allowed to enjoy the luxury and novelties others her age will indulge in. If she is not strong enough it will not last or become something she will embrace.

 


 

How might this impact the characters in this story?

- - - -She will likely be unable to continue their relationship (friends, acquaintances with her society folks)due to pressures of the society, culture and fear from rejection due to social stigmas. Gloria may choose to be with Jerome yet her other friends will likely not associate with her as time goes forward.  The life she once knew will have to be left behind until society changes or embraces diversity- and that is unlikely to happen in her lifetime-as we know from history.

 


 

How do you feel about our star-crossed lovers chances of success? 

- - -I once read a washington post story of two lovers, mixed race marriage, from the 1930's and how they were celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary or something; and they told their story of how housing was unavailable, jobs were hard due to who they were married to, friends were far & few in between- yet they endured each others love and made it to more modern times to share with others.  It can be done; yet the issue becomes who strong is the character to put up with the prejudice of society and turning of their friends, family and co-workers to sabotage their relationship.  These two are likely not to survive the burden.

 


 

Did either of these revelations surprise you? Did they change the way you feel about any of the characters?

- - - -I can't say I was surprised; anyone of the characters can be considered depending upon which motive you assume is being played out in the storyline.  I was surprised of who really was the rat because it shows who had the power and in the end money makes everyone talk even amongst family issues.  I expected a stronger family tie and in these times folks just didn't trust what they called "the man". I felt pretty much loathing of Bastion in the beginning and still feel that way, I liked Vera & now I not so sure about that anymore.  I think that Clara should have been more open but then we wouldn't have a book because it would be boring.  Marcus is all around stable and I still feel the same about him

 


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dhaupt
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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

[ Edited ]

 


thewanderingjew wrote:

I have been thinking about the characters in the book. Everyone seems to be a kind of bully, even Gloria's mom. Is there any character that anyone feels has redeeming qualities? They all seem preoccupied with lying, cheating, stealing, sneaking around and/or forcing their will upon others in order to achieve, among other things, security, independence and popularity.

At first I thought, it is the stage of life but Gloria's mom has certainly passed that stage. Then I had this awful thought; Is it that all of us have the potential to be bullies?

 

 


 

Ah twj you always make us look hard at ourselves and you're right about these characters and in today's climate of looking really hard at bullies and what can happen as a result we forget that in years past bullying was not always considered a bad thing and I remember my parents telling me that standing up to a bully and taking the punishment if I had to would make me a stronger person. Personally it only made me scared to death, but that was then. And unfortunately you're right about us all having it in us to be bullies and I have a time or two to my regret.

 

But to answer your question I think that of all the characters Clara is one with the most redeeming qualities, she's trying to reinvent herself and become a better person than she was in NY, I think initially she just wanted to stay out of reform school and be a basic pain in the butt, but as the novel draws to a close I think she really likes the person she's become here under the scrutiny of her aunt and I think it's Marcus who has made her want to be that better person and that's why she revealed to him her secret even though she knew it could very well end very badly with them as a couple. She's far from perfect but she's the most honest about what she wants here to me anyway.

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Atreyu59
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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

thewanderingjew wrote:

I have been thinking about the characters in the book. Everyone seems to be a kind of bully, even Gloria's mom. Is there any character that anyone feels has redeeming qualities? They all seem preoccupied with lying, cheating, stealing, sneaking around and/or forcing their will upon others in order to achieve, among other things, security, independence and popularity.

At first I thought, it is the stage of life but Gloria's mom has certainly passed that stage. Then I had this awful thought; Is it that all of us have the potential to be bullies?

 


 

Hey twj:

 -- - - - I didn't consider this as a "bully'n" by everyone - -I did see the character development as strong personalities and weak personalities, the have's & the have'nots, which is exactly what happens in real life.  People with influence exert pressure or influence upon others to have them see their way of life. It is very difficult to compare todays standards (free, open & say anything society & share all) with the era of the 1920's; you couldn't even sit down and talk marriage, sex or boys with your parents openly or after marriage without the taboo feeling.

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DSaff
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Stand out sections

These two sections really stood out to me in this week's reading. I will be interested to hear what you all think or add.  :smileyhappy:

 

pg. 277 "All I did was sing. Is that such a crime?" Gloria glared at Malinda, then at every girl in the room.

"It's not that you sing," called a voice from the back -- Angela Desmond, that greasy haired cow -- "But whom you sing with. And that you lie about it. Because everyone knows there'd be only one reason to lie about singing love songs with a colored man --"

"That's quite enough, class," Miss Trimbal said, ringing the tiny bell she kept on her desk. "I will remind you not to air your dirty laundry in public. Doing so only makes the sinner feel self-important and--"

I know this was the attitude of the times, but I was really angry with the teacher. It is easy to see why the girls acted the way they did!

 

pg. 303 "And for the first time in her life, Clara had a true kiss -- one that wasn't about someone taking advantage of her, wasn't about her lying with her lips. It was about wanting to kiss no one else in the world. It was a kiss that shook her to her foundation and woke her up again, shook her alive."

Clara truly felt honest with this kiss and that it was reciprocated.


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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

Clara tells Gloria, "I'm no more expert on the subject than any other girl. But this much I know: Love is worth everything. If you really love someone, you'll have no regrets. Even if it turns out badly." Do you agree? How might this impact the characters in this story? How do you feel about our star-crossed lovers chances of success? 

 

I do agree because if you don't try you'll never know. I think that if you get hurt you'll heal, but if you never know and you always wonder and possibly regret not trying then you'll have those thoughts much longer than you might be heartbroken. I think the situation is in this story is very extreme for the time period. I'm not sure what I would have done if I were Gloria. It seems like their life together will be difficult always. Even if they find a place to live where they are somewhat accepted. 

 

We also learn that Lorraine did not reveal Gloria's secret to Bastian, even as she does expose Clara's reasons for New York. Did either of these revelations surprise you? Did they change the way you feel about any of the characters?

 

I didn't think Lorraine told Bastian about Gloria so I wasn't surprised there. Also, I don't think I was surprised that she put Clara in the hot seat. That girl needs to learn to love herself. She is so desperate to be loved and have attention that she'll throw anyone under the bus. I never really liked Lorraine, but after the little show she put on I did feel sorry for her because she is such a train wreck. 

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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

With the example of Tiger Woods "following his heart", I think he was possibly following another part of his anatomy! 

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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

How can these lovely ladies have "happy ever after lives"?

Well, Gloria and Jerome will move to Paris where he will blossom and so will she.

Lorraine will settle for a dull life as a bankers wife.

Marcus will convince Clara to wait for him. He graduates finally with a PhD in anthropology.

Aine

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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

In this section of the book, I was really disappointed in Lorraine.  I see her spiraling out of control and she really needs help.  I think that her display at the party was a major cry for help.  However, I don't know that she will be seen that way.  I am proud of Clara for coming out and telling her story even though it could hurt her in the short term.  I believe it shows what strong character Clara has and of all of the girls I think she will be the one to come out a stronger person.  Gloria needs to wake up and smell the coffee....Bastian is no good and I have my suspicions about his dealings in business, something tells me he is not as clean as he likes to try to be.

 

I agree with Clara in that love is worth everything.  I myself have been in this situation where your heart is torn in two between what is necessary and what you feel you have to.  I hope she makes a better decision than I did.  My advise to Gloria, go for love because you will not be happy with the other decision...believe me I know from experience.  If she follows her heart it will not be an easy journey but I think it would be a better decision than staying with Bastian where she will have sacrificed nothing and will end up miserable because of it.  If Gloria goes with her heart it may be tough and it may not work out but it would be better than wasting her life thinking what if.....

 

I never thought Lorraine betrayed Glo's secret.  However, I still feel as though Lorraine is week of character and needs to have her head set straight before she is completely ruined.  She can still be redeemed at this point but she is falling fast and will end up dead if she isn't careful.  I still don't like Bastian but I do like Clara.  She has finally found herself and I hope that she gets all her heart's desires because she deserves it.  Glo needs to go with her heart.  If she does then I will have some respect for her...otherwise she will be compromising herself and I will loose any respect she has gained.  While I think it is admirable to put your family first....don't compromise yourself in the process.  Of course that is easier said than done in real life...but this is fiction ;-)

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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355


Sarah-W wrote:

 

Part II starts with a quotation from Zelda Fitzgerald, "I don't want to live, I want to love first, and live incidentally." Love is a major theme for this part of the book. Gloria admits her feelings to Jerome and they start making plans to runaway together. Clara tells Marcus about part of her past. And Lorraine reveals Clara's secret to everyone---including the press---at Gloria's engagement party.

 

Clara tells Gloria, "I'm no more expert on the subject than any other girl. But this much I know: Love is worth everything. If you really love someone, you'll have no regrets. Even if it turns out badly." Do you agree? How might this impact the characters in this story? How do you feel about our star-crossed lovers chances of success? 

I agree that you won't have any regrets if you really love someone.  I think love and regret will have a big impact on the characters.  I think Gloria was having regret at the begining, before she met Jerome, but then I think she really realized that she truely loved Jerome and no one can take that from her.  He will always be in her heart no matter what happens.  By her going to New York with him I kind of think it seals their love for each other and that they are willing to stick it out and try and fight the odds.  They know the odds are against them.  I hope that they do end up staying together and beating the odds, even in the 1920s.

 

 

We also learn that Lorraine did not reveal Gloria's secret to Bastian, even as she does expose Clara's reasons for New York. Did either of these revelations surprise you? Did they change the way you feel about any of the characters?

 Clara and the baby surprised me but other than that no.  I feel sorry for both Clara and Lorraine.  Clara because I think she is a good person.  I hated what Lorraine did to her at the engagement party.  It made me cheer Clara on even more.  Lorraine, well she is a hard character to like.  She is in a downward spiral and it just keeps getting worse.


 

:smileyhappy:
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LerBear
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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

Part II starts with a quotation from Zelda Fitzgerald, "I don't want to live, I want to love first, and live incidentally." Love is a major theme for this part of the book. Gloria admits her feelings to Jerome and they start making plans to runaway together. Clara tells Marcus about part of her past. And Lorraine reveals Clara's secret to everyone---including the press---at Gloria's engagement party.

 

Clara tells Gloria, "I'm no more expert on the subject than any other girl. But this much I know: Love is worth everything. If you really love someone, you'll have no regrets. Even if it turns out badly." Do you agree? How might this impact the characters in this story? How do you feel about our star-crossed lovers chances of success?

 

I love Clara’s quote about love!  I whole heartedly agree!  Most people go through life looking for love, for that special someone to share their life with, some people find it and some people don’t, but most everyone is in search of it at some point in their life.  As Clara says – love is worth everything and then some (true love that is).  In my opinion the only regret to be had would be that of not pursuing love and giving it a chance.  What a complete tragedy it would be to pass up true love because you did what others wanted you to do rather than following your own heart. 

 

I truly hope Gloria can find in herself the strength to overcome the pressures that are being put on her by her family and society to be happy and share her love and her life with Jerome.  I think it will definitely be a very difficult journey, especially when you take into consideration the era in which they are living.  It will require complete dedication to one another and their lives together, because they are going to face obstacles, ridicule and hatred from others.  My head tells me the chances are slim and that the pressures of life will get the best of them and eventually tear them apart.  My heart on the other hand tells me they can make it, that love can prevail and even though it will be a constant struggle, it will be worth it in the end.  After all, what’s life without love, and isn’t it worth fighting for something you want? 

 

We also learn that Lorraine did not reveal Gloria's secret to Bastian, even as she does expose Clara's reasons for New York. Did either of these revelations surprise you? Did they change the way you feel about any of the characters?

 

Okay, so scratch my last discussion about how Lorraine was redeeming herself and I was starting to feel sorry for her and blah blah blah… she’s baaaaack… the Lorraine we all love to hate that is!  I didn’t ever suspect Lorraine as the one who told Bastian about Gloria’s secret, so that part wasn’t surprising, but I was surprised (although I’m not really sure why) at Lorraine’s tacky outburst at the engagement party.  I was completely appalled at her outburst and utter humiliation of poor Clara at the end of this section!  I can honestly say (again) that I do not like Lorraine!  What she did is unforgivable, she doesn’t even grasp the severity of what she is doing and the lives she is ruining, she deserves everything that’s coming her way.

 

I was completely shocked and caught off guard at the revelation of Clara’s past!  I never saw this one coming - way to go Jillian!  I was in complete shock and at the same time my heart was breaking for poor Clara.  This revelation is something that is truly life shattering for her.  I am so scared for her and what this will mean and how it will change her life.  Marcus doesn’t deserve this heartache either so I find myself feeling very sympathetic for him as well.  I am so worried about her and Marcus’ relationship, which I believe to be the real deal.  I am afraid that he will see her differently now and that they will be torn apart by this.  I so want Clara and Marcus to end up together and now I fear they will not be able to get past this.  I was a bit apprehensive about liking Clara at the beginning of the book, but she has now become my favorite character.  I now believe she is genuine, sweet and caring and I so hope that her story ends well! 

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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

Yes, I totally agree with you about Tiger Woods following another part of his anatomy, very good!!!!!

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dhaupt
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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

 


AIRKNITTER wrote:

How can these lovely ladies have "happy ever after lives"?

Well, Gloria and Jerome will move to Paris where he will blossom and so will she.

Lorraine will settle for a dull life as a bankers wife.

Marcus will convince Clara to wait for him. He graduates finally with a PhD in anthropology.

Aine


Loved this thank You

 

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maxcat
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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

Sarah-W wrote:

 

I'm still trying to figure out how Lorraine did all the work to discover that there had been a baby? Who do you suppose knew? Who did she ask?  AnnieBook wrote:
  I'm still on the fence about Lorraine.  She's trying so hard to be a good friend to Gloria but you definitely see her evil streak when it comes to Clara.  Her revelation of Clara's past w/ Haris really blew me away!  I did not see that coming!  I'm curious if Clara ever told Haris she had his child?  Or did she hope to hide it and escape NY for a fresh start

 

If I'm not mistaken, didn't Lorraine go to Gloria's house to pretend she had left a book or something there and the maid allowed her to go upstairs to find it? I think she went to Clara's room and started rummaging around and found a picture of her in a flapper dress and it was dated 1922? in New York. With more looking around, she found all the info she needed to blast Clara.

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Bonnie_C
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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

Karla1717 wrote:

With the example of Tiger Woods "following his heart", I think he was possibly following another part of his anatomy! 


Touché Karla!

Let's not confuse true love with lust.

 

Bonnie

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Bonnie_C
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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

I'm not so sure that Lorraine's scene at the engagement party will make Clara a more sympathetic character as some readers have suggested.  The attendees at this event are all high society snobs.  I can't imagine that Clara's plight will generate any sympathy that will enter their diamond encrusted hearts.

 

I'm interested in finding out just what kind of man Marcus will be.  If he truly loves Clara, will he be willing to follow his heart and accept her now that the high society rose is off the bloom?  It seems he has the same decision to make as Gloria. 

 

Gloria is in an awful situation.  Being married to Bastian would be nothing short of a nightmare.  She may as well take her chances with the mob.  But If she follows her heart her future with Jerome will be fraught with struggles.  Plus she would be leaving dear Mother out in the cold.  Which I would find somewhat humorous, but I think the guilt would eat Gloria alive.

 

Bonnie

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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

I was not too shocked to hear of the baby. After Clara confided in Marcus, she did say "She was holding back, but the rest of the story she would never tell him -- never in her life."  I had a sneaking suspicion that she might have gotten pregnant. I feel so badly for her, the poor girl is trying to turn her life around, has done so and found a decent guy. I'm so aggravated with Lorraine right now!

 

I'm also really enjoying the Gloria and Jerome plotline. I can honestly say, I have no idea how this will turn out. If I had to guess, Gloria kills Bastian, her and Jerome move to New York.  :smileyhappy:

 

I feel so much for Gloria and Clara. I am dying to know what is going to happen.

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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

 


Sarah-W wrote:

 

Clara tells Gloria, "I'm no more expert on the subject than any other girl. But this much I know: Love is worth everything. If you really love someone, you'll have no regrets. Even if it turns out badly." Do you agree? How might this impact the characters in this story? How do you feel about our star-crossed lovers chances of success? 

 


 

I agree with those who have said it was in this section that they started to really like Clara's character.  What I like about her is her strength and pragmatism.  Even though she tells Gloria this, at the same time she is strong enough to have left her New York love, and to be forging a new life and a new image for herself.

 

I love happy endings as much as the next person, but the feminist in me hates it when an author starts happily pairing everyone off, or promotes really unhealthy ideas of love (e.g., fighting = love and romance, hurting or being hurt by someone you love is okay, that kind of thing).  So I really loved Clara's character for the strength she showed in dealing with Harris.

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Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

Clara tells Gloria, "I'm no more expert on the subject than any other girl. But this much I know: Love is worth everything. If you really love someone, you'll have no regrets. Even if it turns out badly." Do you agree? How might this impact the characters in this story? How do you feel about our star-crossed lovers chances of success? 

I think that love is worth fighting for even when there are some bad times along the way. When relationships end I don't think that people should regret them, people (myself included) do get really upset though and sometimes think the relationship went all wrong. This is mostly just because a person is deeply upset and they are only remembering the negative aspects of the relationship. I feel that all of the characters in the story should fight for the one they love. Gloria should fight to be with Jerome no matter the cost of being from different races and I really hope they make it! Clara although she does have her faults should fight to be with Marcus because he really does seem to care about her.

 

We also learn that Lorraine did not reveal Gloria's secret to Bastian, even as she does expose Clara's reasons for New York. Did either of these revelations surprise you? Did they change the way you feel about any of the characters?

 

I don't think any of this surprised me, I saw these coming when Raine got the picture of Clara out of her dresser. Plus you knew something more was going on with Clara than what she was telling us about her past, since she was trying to keep much of it hidden. I don't feel any differently about Clara but I'm not really liking Raine. I hope her character shapes up a little better before the end of the book.

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