Reply
Contributor
LorettaP
Posts: 15
Registered: ‎10-05-2010
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

My own experience with love makes me agree with Clara's statement. I think this will make Gloria listen to heart and choose Jerome not Bastian. I hope that Gloria and Jerome can make it. In the era that this book was written a relationship such as theirs was virtualy unheard of. I am sure that they will be met with many obstacles.

 

I was so sure that Lorraine told Bastian of Gloria's secret. I was surprised to find out that she didn't. Lorraine never liked Clara and never tried to get to know her. I am not surprised that when she found out about her past that she revealed everything. I still do not like Lorraine. I think that she would do anything to be the center of attention. I am starting to like Clara more than I did originally. Hearing about her New York life in detail made her seem more real. Gloria is still my favorite character and I am rooting for her and Jerome.

Wordsmith
literature
Posts: 499
Registered: ‎10-19-2006

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

 

Lorraine has been troubling me a lot in this book.  Even though her family is well off, she really got a bum deal having everything at her immediate disposal, but lacking any real bonding with her parents.  She was a lost soul and being so close with Gloria their whole childhood, sharing everything, filled this void in her life.  The trouble started when Gloria became engaged to Bastian, then Clara came to live with Gloria and Marcus paid too much attention to Clara and didn't give Lorraine the attention she yearned for.  Then Gloria gets a chance at singing and starts up a relationship with Jerome.  She felt it was always about what Gloria wanted and got.  Lorraine felt left out of Gloria's life and acted out in some very mean and malicious ways, but deep down I don't think she was a bad person.  She was a child who grew up without parental guidance, never being instilled with confidence, and turned out to be more a person to be pitied than hated.  She felt deserted by Gloria, ignored by Marcus, lacked any real genuine friendship with anyone other than Gloria, and felt put out when Clara's entrance complicated her wannabe relationship with Marcus.  She may have had all the money and means to live an extravagant life but didn't possess the confidence, social graces and the know how to do it. 

 

She goes to Bastian's apartment on two different occasions, but had to be drunk to do it.  She makes a grand "uninvited" entrance at Gloria's engagement party completely drunk.  Things were going steadily downhill for her and she lashed out the only way she knew how to, with random and sporadic behavior masked by alcohol.   Everything was coming at her from all different directions and not only did she not know how to handle it, but felt discarded and unloved and I think she was on the verge of a nervous breakdown.  In retrospect she felt guilt and remorse about her actions but intellectually knew she had to protect Gloria but just didn't know how to do it.  What she didn't figure in the equation was that just because she felt remorse with her past behavior, didn't mean that anyone had to forgive her.

 

I hope that Lorraine gets the counseling she needs, gets the love and guidance from her parents that she's been lacking, goes off to Barnard and does well there.  Ingenue, where are you?

Reader 2
ojinaga1
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎10-05-2010
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

I like Clara's character a lot. I think Lorraine wants closeness to Gloria so badly that she'll do anything to get it.  I also think that she might be torn between her devotion to Gloria and her own desire for attention.  That is going to cause Lorraine trouble later on.

Contributor
AWVA
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎05-03-2010
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

If you really love someone you’ll have no regrets. Even if it turns out badly.

Do i agree?

Not completely. I totally believe in regrets, it’s simply how you deal with them in the end. It’s like Mary Chapin Carpenter says in Almost Home “there’s no such things as no regrets but baby that’s alright”. I’m totally with her in that. There are also different levels of “badly”; there’s badly in that things will be a struggle and hard and then there is Lorraine hanging out with gangsters and getting into an abusive situation. In saying that we have to remember that the book is based in the 1920s and that Gloria and Jerome especially have a hard future ahead of them because he’s black and she’s white. So personally I guess of all the characters they will be most affected by this statement on love, I feel that they have a soul mate true love story ahead of them, even though it’ll be hard to remember that at times. Individually though this is how I see the story developing…if I may be so brazen to put my opinion of Jillians great writing and twists into my simple words…Gloria and Jerome: they will struggle and question their love and lives but in the end they will prevail. Clara and Marcus…I’m not sure how they will progress…perhaps they will become great friends and he will love her more…and then eventually they will become great loves or she will move on and he will always love her. As for our good friend Lorraine…that poor girl…she needs to love herself before she can love anyone else – as cliché as that sounds.

It absolutely did not surprise me that Lorraine didn’t spill the beans to Bastian. I didn’t think she did to begin with…I thought Vera did it…and she did. That’s what I love about Lorraine…even as bad as she appears to be; she’s just sad and lonely. She doesn’t truly want to hurt anyone or ruin anyone’s life, she just wants to be loved and belong somewhere. That’s why I fear for her and this mob connection she’s developing…she’s going to get caught up in that and get in a lot of trouble. I’m not happy about that story line but it’s perfect for the book…I’ll just be that girl cringing as I read Lorraine’s parts of the story.

By the end of the book my feelings for Lorraine changed and developed. I like to think it’s because I began to understand her better. When she came to Gloria’s engagement party my heart broke for her…

 

Thank you!

Contributor
WyattMills
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎10-19-2006

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

 

 

Well this portion just cemented my love for Clara. I really liked her from the start, and of all the characters was drawn to her the most, but this section just reinforced that for me. I do have to agree with her statement that "If you really love someone you'll have no regrets", but I am a hopeless romantic as well :smileyhappy: I do have to say though, the star crossed lovers have a long tough road ahead of them especially in the time period this book is written in. It's one thing to be a white singer with a black pianist, it's a totally different story to be having a love relationship with that same pianist. I am pulling for them of course because I want love to win out, Just like I am pulling for Clara and Marcus but reality has to set in sometime and I think it will hit Jerome and Glo harder than the other characters and maybe even harder than they expect, I worry if Gloria can handle it.

 

I wasn't really surprised that Lorrained didn't squeal on Gloria, but it still had the wheels turning in my head trying to figure out who did and what  connection Bastian had to the speak easy in the first place. I admit that because of this I just had to finish the book, I won't spoil it for anyone else though. But finding this out still doesn't really change how I feel about Lorraine, as much as I try to tell myself she just needs someone to believe in her, to help her, then she turns around and sabotages herself again and doesn't seem to even care anymore. I can't really seem to bring myself to invest in this character. I'm curious to see if she'll dig herself out of the hole she's put herself into or just dig herself deeper into it, but I'm not really pulling either way like I am for the other characters.

 

Gotta say though fav characters are Clara and Marcus, can't really stand Bastian, Lorraine simply needs help and Glo and Jerome have my hope that they make it in the real world.

Contributor
blue_sunshine
Posts: 9
Registered: ‎10-12-2010
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

I think the quote at the beginning of Part II was perfect for the book. We have to remember that these are teenagers we are dealing with in the story so they are experiencing what they feel is love for the first time and I do believe that they have to accept wherever that takes them and learn from their mistakes even if things don't always turn out how they planned it. So I agree with Gloria's comment about love. Love isn't always a smooth road, there will be bumps in the road and I think Gloria and Clara need these experiences to help them grow and really experience love at its core. Gloria's situation with Jerome is a complicated one due to being inter-racial, which wasn't really accepted well back in the 1920's. Also trying to run away with him will also add more problems. Clara's relationship with Marcus isn't going to be all peachy either, she has a past with the guy from New York and who knows how he will interfere in her life again to complicate things even more. So love will definitely cause problems/character conflicts in the future as well. I think Clara and Marcus's relationship will last. I'm not so sure about Gloria and Jerome's relationship, but I hope it lasts.

 

I kind of predicted that Lorraine didn't tell Bastian Gloria's secret so I wasn't surprised when it wasn't her. I totally thought it was Clara who told Bastian but Clara said it wasn't her, so it's hard to know who to believe. I wasn't surprised that she exposed Clara's reasons for New York because as the story progresses, I am learning how sneaky, jealous Lorraine is, so by that point in the story I knew something had to break. After these incidences, I am disliking Lorraine more and more. She's not to be trusted.

Correspondent
jabrkeKB
Posts: 164
Registered: ‎11-15-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355


Sarah-W wrote:

 


 

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'm not surprised that Lorraine was not the snitch, but I was surprised by Clara's baby.  I know other readers suspected it, but I didn't pick up on it.

Wordsmith
babzilla41
Posts: 252
Registered: ‎05-04-2009
0 Kudos

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? 

 

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?

 


Chance of success:  I think that Gloria and Jerome have no chance.  There's no place they can really go to find acceptance as a bi-racial couple.  Gloria's "world" would NEVER accept them as a couple and we've seen the same reaction from the people at the skating rink.

 

I'm still not sure about Clara and Marcus.  I'm not yet convinced that he's not playing her.  He seems to truly care for her but I have this nagging feeling that he's in love with Gloria and is still working on executing their "plan".  

 

Revelation:  I wasn't surprised that Lorraine wasn't the person who tipped Bastian off to Gloria's singing debut; I thought that would be too obvious.  I was somewhat surprised that she told Clara's secret at Gloria's party; I guess I wasn't expecting that, although given her inebriated state and desperation to get back into Gloria's good graces, maybe not so surprising. 

 

I have to say that stopping at this point was really an exercise in determination not to read off schedule!!

 

b

"I love books. If I could eat them, I would. I love their scent and often put my nose in to inhale their aroma." - Kathleen Grissom
Wordsmith
babzilla41
Posts: 252
Registered: ‎05-04-2009
0 Kudos

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 thought she got her information from a friend at Barnard.  She was probably like a dog with a bone once she found the picture of Clara and Harris and just kept asking questions.

 

b


 

"I love books. If I could eat them, I would. I love their scent and often put my nose in to inhale their aroma." - Kathleen Grissom
Distinguished Correspondent
Lil_Irish_Lass
Posts: 163
Registered: ‎11-21-2008
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

Once I started, I couldn't put Vixen down and now I'm impatiently waiting to be able to read the next book in the series so I can found out what happens!!!

 

I'll be honest, I signed up for this book because it was free, I didn't think I was going to really like it, but man was I wrong! The story sucked me in on page one and even now that I've finished it still has me in it's grasp.

 

The characters were well developed and I could easily picture them jumping off the pages and in to real life. My only critique would be that they act and carry themselves MUCH older than their ages and I don't know how realistic that would be for that era and their age group.

 

My favorite story line is Clara and Marcus. Both are judged by their past actions, which aren't who they truly are. It seems fitting that they are finally able to be themselves only around each other.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"No sensible man ever engages, unprepared, in a fencing match of words with a woman." - The Woman in White
Wordsmith
babzilla41
Posts: 252
Registered: ‎05-04-2009

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355


Sarah-W wrote:

 

I was wondering who would be the first to bring this up! Gloria certainly seems to be feeling this way, even if she has the most at risk in terms of monetary value!

ponkle wrote:


This is totally random but as I read the earlier questions and answers the link from a song sung by Janis Joplin and written by Kris Kristofferson keeps going around in my mind :"Freedoms just another word for nothing left to lose"


 


I  wonder if Gloria and Jerome take the risk to be a couple whether they would, in the end, be miserable due to all of the societal pressures, loss of family and friends, and inability to fit in anywhere.  When you give up everything for someone, you often end up feeling resentful and that ends up seeping into every facet of your relationship, destroying what you started out with.    I also  think that it would be more difficult on Jerome to be in a relationship with Gloria.  Just think about how Bastian referred to him as "boy" and how he treated him.  I certainly don't think that Bastian would be in the minority as far as those matters are concerned.  Sometimes true love is letting someone go because that's what's best for the other person.

 

b

"I love books. If I could eat them, I would. I love their scent and often put my nose in to inhale their aroma." - Kathleen Grissom
Contributor
Lycan731
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎09-09-2010
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

Well, I've just been spoiled. Anyway, I was surprised to learn that Lorraine did not have sex with Bastian. I'm glad she didn't, at least there is the chance of redemption for her. I never liked Bastian, but the fact that he is so heartless made him more despicable to me. I'm not liking the Clara-Marcus relationshio much, beacuse I don;t like Clara much.  She is , probably the most clicehd character in the story. And Marcus, he fell for her so fast! There was no trace of the scheme they had planned there at all!! And why did Gloria did not like her to begin with?

I'm still halfway thorugh the book, but I hope there is some big twist at the end. I don't think I would like a happy ending for this story.

Moderator
Sarah-W
Posts: 526
Registered: ‎10-29-2009
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

Excellent thinking! There are more surprises to come.

Moderator
Sarah-W
Posts: 526
Registered: ‎10-29-2009
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

 

I like this, too! But I want to see Clara go to Paris and meet her literary heroes.

ponkle wrote:

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."


ponkle wrote:

This was wonderful to read first thing in the morning, brought a big smile to my face :smileyhappy:


 

 

Moderator
Sarah-W
Posts: 526
Registered: ‎10-29-2009
0 Kudos

Re: Stand out sections

 

I'm ready for some happy endings, too!

thewanderingjew wrote:

Even though Clara's advice was to "follow your heart" and the rest would take care of itself, when she followed hers, it ended in disaster.

Perhaps she feels if it had worked out well, she would have been the happiest of people, but it didn't. I think her biggest regret was the loss of the child, not the pregnancy. She no longer wanted Harris which contradicts her advice that "love conquers all". Not only didn't it conquer all it didn't last long enough. It was romantic advice but not mature advice.

You know, it is a novel, maybe the author will make it all end well, when the series is complete. I am kind of ready for some happy endings.


 

Moderator
Sarah-W
Posts: 526
Registered: ‎10-29-2009
0 Kudos

Re: Stand out sections

 

Thanks Jillian! As always we're so lucky to have you able to join us for First Look.

Jillian-Larkin wrote:

 


Sarah-W wrote:

I also marked the spot where Clara kisses Marcus, he asks if she loved Harris Brown, 

 

"I don't love him," she says. "I don't think I ever really did. I didn't know what love was, back then. I think I wanted to feel things just for the sake of feeling them. But now I have a much better idea."

 

This is after she's told Gloria, "If you love someone, you have no regrets."

 

So does she or doesn't she regret what happened in New York? Did she or didn't she love Harris Brown? I know it's possible to love more than one person. And that even when someone loves another person very deeply that is possible to feel regret. Still, this stood out to me as a kind of contradiction, a sort of 'do what I say, not what I did' moment. 

 


Hi there--I thought I'd comment on this. I'm not sure Clara's being contradictory, exactly. We have to remember that it has not been very long since Clara's romance with Harris Brown. I don't think you can really be sure whether or not you loved someone until you've had some time to get a little perspective. Clara's starting to get that, but she's not quite there yet. What she knows now is that whether or not she loved Harris, she doesn't regret the relationship and what she learned from it.

 


 

Inspired Contributor
shmy
Posts: 71
Registered: ‎05-10-2010
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

 


babzilla41 wrote:

Sarah-W wrote:

 

I was wondering who would be the first to bring this up! Gloria certainly seems to be feeling this way, even if she has the most at risk in terms of monetary value!

ponkle wrote:


This is totally random but as I read the earlier questions and answers the link from a song sung by Janis Joplin and written by Kris Kristofferson keeps going around in my mind :"Freedoms just another word for nothing left to lose"


 


I  wonder if Gloria and Jerome take the risk to be a couple whether they would, in the end, be miserable due to all of the societal pressures, loss of family and friends, and inability to fit in anywhere.  When you give up everything for someone, you often end up feeling resentful and that ends up seeping into every facet of your relationship, destroying what you started out with.    I also  think that it would be more difficult on Jerome to be in a relationship with Gloria.  Just think about how Bastian referred to him as "boy" and how he treated him.  I certainly don't think that Bastian would be in the minority as far as those matters are concerned.  Sometimes true love is letting someone go because that's what's best for the other person.

 

b


I think this is why I didn't want to become invested in Jerome and Gloria, it would just be really hard for them to be together because of the era. I love the way you phraise it. :smileysad:

 

Moderator
Sarah-W
Posts: 526
Registered: ‎10-29-2009
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Nothing left to lose?

I just found this passage from the section where Gloria goes to visit Jerome to tell him how she feels:

 

Jerome: "You've already lied to me once. What makes you think I would trust you?"

 

Gloria: "Because before, I had everything to lose," she said. "But now that I've lost everything there's nothing left to hide."

Moderator
Sarah-W
Posts: 526
Registered: ‎10-29-2009
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

 

I hope to discuss this topic more when we get to the end of the book, but here are my thoughts:
* How much have things changed with regard to attitudes to race then vs now?
* Do you think things would have changed if people didn't take these kinds of risks?

shmy wrote:

 

I think this is why I didn't want to become invested in Jerome and Gloria, it would just be really hard for them to be together because of the era. I love the way you phraise it. :smileysad:

 


 

Moderator
Sarah-W
Posts: 526
Registered: ‎10-29-2009
0 Kudos

Re: Vixen Discussion: Part II thru p. 355

I keep wondering if Lorraine will get her chance at love?

 


SSDailey wrote:

I am a hopeless romantic myself so I will always hold to the belief that if it is a true love then it will last for eternity. But I also know that we all have to have a few speed bumps on the path to finding that true love. I can't regret any of the heartache in my past because it is what led me to where I am now, in a very happy relationship with my best friend.

 

Then there's Lorraine. Yes she is jealous and it has turned to maliciousness and she's all over the place, but I'm hoping that eventually (maybe in Ingenue...) that she'll get into a situation that will help her to grow up and change her ways. Though I don't like her much now, I do want to see all of these characters succeed in their lives. Lorraine is kind of the underdog in all of this. No one really expects much from her. I think if she stopped with this obsession with trying to act all mature and worldly then she could really surprise us all with how great she truly could be.

 

We haven't even finished this book and already I find that I am wishing that Ingenue was coming out really, really soon. I hate it when I fall in love with a book and then realize I have to wait a while for the next one.