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clarepayton
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Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

Eloise's ambitions are, she tells us in the first chapter, chiefly academic -- to do her research and complete the elusive Ph.D. But her sensibility seems to be more than usually imaginative -- do you think it's her destiny to remain a researcher?



Note: This discussion topic is particulary suitable for readers who have only read through chapter 7 of The Deception of the Emerald Ring. If your post includes a revelation from a later point in the novel, please include the word "Spoiler" in the subject line of your post.

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maxcat
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

I think she is destined to be a researcher. Look at all she has uncovered so far; the Pink Carnetion, the Purple Gentian. And I do believe she is enjoying what she is researching. What better way to get into a novel or story than to research notes in a library and go from clue to clue.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep - Robert Frost
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LeeAnn92
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

Eloise is starry-eyed. She's in love with the idea of the English spies and has romantised Colin. As she reads the spies, her world expands from seeing them as men in black capes to strong women capable of playing a deadly game.

Eloise is very much a modern rendition of the women she reads. Unfortunately, the women don't seem to mature much as they marry (as witnessed in Amy and Hen) which makes me wonder about the author's ideas on marriage. If the author's vision of married life (women seem to stop maturing and maintain their dreamy-eyed innocence) is carried over into Eloise's life, I suspect she isn't destined for growth beyond that of a starry-eyed dreamer.

I had hoped that by book 3, we'd be seeing stronger heroines. Instead, Jane seems to be the only character who's growing in any way.
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LaurenWillig
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

Hi, LeeAnn!
You raise a number of wonderful points, but there are two topics in particular I'd really love to discuss. First, I was very struck by your description of Eloise as a modern rendition of the women she's reading about. Which leads me to ask... how much do we become what we read? And is this a good thing, or a bad thing? One sees this a fair amount in grad school, where people spend so much time immersed in the papers of a particular era or persons that they begin to internalize that time period. One historian I knew complained that the biggest problem in writing biographies is the loss of objectivity that comes of being immersed in someone else's life. That historian was more concerned about the deleterious effect of loss of objectivity on the scholarly work, but what do you think about the effect on the scholar? (In this case, Eloise).

Second, I was also intrigued by your point about Amy and Henrietta not seeming to grow through marriage. Okay, I lied-- this is actually two topics here about character growth, not one. First, how much are people capable of change? Are some people more capable of change than others? There's a wonderful line in Diana Gabaldon's "Outlander," where a wise old horse trainer describes another character as being the sort who "will still be a girl at fifty" (which I think also describes Amy wonderfully well). In my own life, I've known people whose lives have been touched by all sorts of disaster-- death of loved ones, illness-- and have yet remained essentially unchanged by it. On the other hand, there are those who seem to mature even without outward stimulus. What makes a person grown and change? And why do some do so while others don't?

Finally, I was fascinated by the notion of marriage as an impetus for personal change. Does marriage necessarily lead to a maturation process? Is there something about the nature of marriage that deepens or matures peoples' characters? Does it depend on the type of couple or the type of marriage? In the context of the historical characters, do you think that Miles and Hen having known each other so long and so well before marriage changes the amount of adjustment they have to go through as a married couple? I'd also be interested in hearing whether people think that the impact of marriage has changed at all in the modern era, now that people often live together before marriage.

If others would like to jump in on any of these points, please feel free!

Lauren




LeeAnn92 wrote:
Eloise is starry-eyed. She's in love with the idea of the English spies and has romantised Colin. As she reads the spies, her world expands from seeing them as men in black capes to strong women capable of playing a deadly game.

Eloise is very much a modern rendition of the women she reads. Unfortunately, the women don't seem to mature much as they marry (as witnessed in Amy and Hen) which makes me wonder about the author's ideas on marriage. If the author's vision of married life (women seem to stop maturing and maintain their dreamy-eyed innocence) is carried over into Eloise's life, I suspect she isn't destined for growth beyond that of a starry-eyed dreamer.

I had hoped that by book 3, we'd be seeing stronger heroines. Instead, Jane seems to be the only character who's growing in any way.


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SaraleeE
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

All right, I'm game...

I can see that Eloise is a modern version of the historical characters she's reading about, but isn't that because human nature just doesn't change all that much over the years? Young women will always have hopes and dreams, high aspirations and a longing for love. As for internalizing the time period you're reading about, I bet that could be a problem if you think everyone else knows the same stuff you do--you lose the ability to explain it all.

Actually, you can see a little of that in Eloise's growing relationship with Colin -- the two of them share information about the Pink Carnation that other people don't know. For better or for worse, outsiders can get shut out of their discussions.

And I think the most interesting characters grow and change as they face the challenges of life. A person's essence might remain the same, though, even if their wisdom and understanding grows. I think that Letty grows over the course of the story. She gets hurt and scared, and she understands that things could get bad. But she doesn't run away, she finds the bravery to move ahead--I think that's growth.

Growth doesn't necessarily mean a loss of innocence. Innocence isn't the same thing as ignorance--a person can be wise, and yet still good and still hopeful.

Finally, I don't think that any circumstance in a person's life (e.g., marriage, bodily peril, or outwitting French spies) can automatically be said to lead to a maturation process. A person has to be capable of change.

Saralee
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MaryKay
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

I have a few thoughts regarding the questions Lauren raised concerning Amy and Hen's questionable growth through marriage as well as the question as to what the impetus is for change/maturation in marriage.

First, and it might just be clarification, but don't the 3 books take place fairly close together in time? Geoff mentions at one point that Hen and Miles were still in the newlywed stage and in the "...initial phase of insufferable gooiness...." That being the case, they haven't had time to do much growing--either personally or as a married couple. Additionally, the last time that I remember seeing Amy and Richard--in the second book--I seem to recall that they had not been married long. And wasn't Amy fairly bored in the country? (Sorry if I am mistaken, it's been awhile since I read the book.) Growth in marriage just doesn't happen overnight. While I am not certain of the timeline of the books, I do believe that not enough time has passed for anyone to do much in the growing and maturing categories. I think that, given time, all of the couples will grow and mature. Isn't Letty only around 19? We can all remember being 19. I think that the age of the characters also has to be taken into account when looking at their behavior.

Second--"marriage as an impetus for personal change. Does marriage necessarily lead to a maturation process?" Hmmmm. I would definitely have to say that a successful marriage either leads to or is led by a maturation process. Hen and Miles, even though they have known each other a long time, must still learn how to interact with each other as a couple instead of as 2 individuals within their relationship. (Don't misunderstand, I am NOT insinuating that there is no room within a marriage for individuality, there is. I just mean that there is a new element to be dealt with and that element is being part of a married couple.) Within any long-term relationship, whether husband-wife, parent-child, even within friendships, the playing field is never static. Even just the aging process brings different issues to a relationship. Add to that outside forces and events, and the players must learn how to relate to each other differently. To fail to do so would mean that there is no communication. On a different train of thought (stream of consciousness, you know)--my question is would Letty and Geoff and even Amy and Richard have an easier time adjusting to marriage (once Geoff decided that he really does like Letty) since they really only know each other as a spouse than Hen and Miles would--since their relationship was almost sibling-like before. Different roles are introduced and must be learned. And, add in the tension with Richard and Miles....Family dynamics can definitely add a problematic element to a relationship. Just a thought.

Last, regarding Lauren's question as to whether the impact of marriage has changed in the modern era, the answer would have to be most definitely and not so much. How sweet and chivalrous of Geoffrey to marry Letty b/c he compromised her virtue with a kiss. Isn't that what K-Fed had in mind? But, marriages were not always, nor often I guess, love matches. So, which is better, marriage as a contract and an obligation or marriages made for love (one thinks) and broken with abandon? To me, it seems that marriages at one point in history were made to strengthen family position and take care of women and now they are made to legitimize children and confer benefits on a couple. Marriage, as a concept, is very romantic. However, marriage as a reality is definitely more of a business proposition than we are all led to believe...even as we get married. So, maybe marriage isn't so different 200 years later. The reasons for marrying might be different, but the outcome is the same. The only difference is how easily it is to dissolve a marriage now.

I'm stepping off of my soapbox...
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LaurenWillig
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

Hi, MaryKay!

I have to say, I very much enjoyed your soapbox. : ) Especially what you wrote about outside factors, in particular family dynamics, impacting a relationship. All I can do is nod my head and echo vehemently, "How true!"

And (as I wander off on a tangent) I think there's also a great deal of truth to what you say about marriage still being something of a business proposition, not just in terms of the legal benefits and obligations conferred by marriage (which have sparked so many recent political battles), but also the attitude people bring to it. Seeing the trailers for reality tv shows that encourage women to compete for the affection of a "millionaire", one can't help but wonder if our attitude towards marriage is any less practical or mercenary than that of our predecessors.

Lauren






MaryKay wrote:
I have a few thoughts regarding the questions Lauren raised concerning Amy and Hen's questionable growth through marriage as well as the question as to what the impetus is for change/maturation in marriage.

First, and it might just be clarification, but don't the 3 books take place fairly close together in time? Geoff mentions at one point that Hen and Miles were still in the newlywed stage and in the "...initial phase of insufferable gooiness...." That being the case, they haven't had time to do much growing--either personally or as a married couple. Additionally, the last time that I remember seeing Amy and Richard--in the second book--I seem to recall that they had not been married long. And wasn't Amy fairly bored in the country? (Sorry if I am mistaken, it's been awhile since I read the book.) Growth in marriage just doesn't happen overnight. While I am not certain of the timeline of the books, I do believe that not enough time has passed for anyone to do much in the growing and maturing categories. I think that, given time, all of the couples will grow and mature. Isn't Letty only around 19? We can all remember being 19. I think that the age of the characters also has to be taken into account when looking at their behavior.

Second--"marriage as an impetus for personal change. Does marriage necessarily lead to a maturation process?" Hmmmm. I would definitely have to say that a successful marriage either leads to or is led by a maturation process. Hen and Miles, even though they have known each other a long time, must still learn how to interact with each other as a couple instead of as 2 individuals within their relationship. (Don't misunderstand, I am NOT insinuating that there is no room within a marriage for individuality, there is. I just mean that there is a new element to be dealt with and that element is being part of a married couple.) Within any long-term relationship, whether husband-wife, parent-child, even within friendships, the playing field is never static. Even just the aging process brings different issues to a relationship. Add to that outside forces and events, and the players must learn how to relate to each other differently. To fail to do so would mean that there is no communication. On a different train of thought (stream of consciousness, you know)--my question is would Letty and Geoff and even Amy and Richard have an easier time adjusting to marriage (once Geoff decided that he really does like Letty) since they really only know each other as a spouse than Hen and Miles would--since their relationship was almost sibling-like before. Different roles are introduced and must be learned. And, add in the tension with Richard and Miles....Family dynamics can definitely add a problematic element to a relationship. Just a thought.

Last, regarding Lauren's question as to whether the impact of marriage has changed in the modern era, the answer would have to be most definitely and not so much. How sweet and chivalrous of Geoffrey to marry Letty b/c he compromised her virtue with a kiss. Isn't that what K-Fed had in mind? But, marriages were not always, nor often I guess, love matches. So, which is better, marriage as a contract and an obligation or marriages made for love (one thinks) and broken with abandon? To me, it seems that marriages at one point in history were made to strengthen family position and take care of women and now they are made to legitimize children and confer benefits on a couple. Marriage, as a concept, is very romantic. However, marriage as a reality is definitely more of a business proposition than we are all led to believe...even as we get married. So, maybe marriage isn't so different 200 years later. The reasons for marrying might be different, but the outcome is the same. The only difference is how easily it is to dissolve a marriage now.

I'm stepping off of my soapbox...


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LaurenWillig
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

p.s. you're absolutely right, too, as to the timeline-- the first book takes place in March through May of 1803, the second book in May through June, and the third book June through July, so the entire series thus far covers the space of four months. The characters are really only just embarking on their lives as couples and they're still very much in the honeymoon stage. I have a feeling that Amy and Richard, in particular, are going to have a number of growing pains.

On the topic of marital growing pains, I was re-reading "Little Women" over Christmas (something of a personal tradition. The chapter on the early snags in Meg's and John's marriage is still one of the most thoughtful depictions of the ups and downs of two people learning to live with one another that I've ever come across-- it's like looking at a seventeenth century Dutch genre painting, all the little domestic details so faithfully depicted.
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LeeAnn92
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

Hi Lauren!

When I worked towards my degree in History (hence my love of the novels), I definately changed as I worked with historical documents. Reading first-person accounts of those who were unjustly incarcerated at Manzabar definately changed how I viewed America's reaction to Japanese-Americans. Also, reading about their daily lives made me think twice about how I respond to unpleasant events in my own life. So I can see that Eloise would be influenced by what she's reading.

As I read the books, I keep in mind, she's reading original documentation and not the narrative we're reading -- we're reading what she's visualizing and not what she's actually reading. At least, that's my take as it's pointed out in her narrative that she's having to read Mile's or Amy's terrible handwriting and she's reading letters and such.

One of the things I love about Eloise is that she does change. This is a girl who seems to have been the "mature one" in her realationship with Pammy and even with her former fiance (whom I call "what's-his-name"). As her relationship with Colin grows, so does her self-confidence...but I may be reading into that especially since we meet her only just before Colin does and I'm having to imagine based on her own self-description what she was like before Colin.

In regards to Amy and Hen -- both whom I love as my fictional kid sisters -- I see them both as being a tad...well...flighty. However, they mean well and they boldly go after what they want, something that women of that era just didn't do. In regards to their lack of growth, I have -- and I may be in error of this -- assumed that some time has passed between each of the books. Also, both have experienced some rather intense situations. I think I expected them to be a tad more world-wise when we run into them again in subsequent books (Jane comes off as growing more world-wise, so I'm suprised that Amy and Hen don't mature in the same manner). It could be that Amy and Hen will continue to traipse blithely through life, charging through situations like a bull in a china shop...and one can't help but envy that.

As for marriage changing a person? You bet.

I married late at the age of 36 and I'm not the same person I was back then. I married my best friend very much like Miles married his. Hen and Miles are so much alike in their seemingly innocent eagerness to embrace espionage (I loved how clueless they were that people were trying to harm them way before that wild carriage ride), that I enjoy them far more than I do Amy and Richard. Despite their Hen and Miles are helpmates - their personalities compliment each other and both respect one another for who they are. They see each other clearly and are probably very close in that aspect to my husband and I (though Hen and Miles had the advantage of "living" together thanks to Richard's parents and my hubby and I did not live together). I do expect them to grow: they were best friends before and I expect them to far better ride out the problems that arise in marriages than Amy and Richard.

I love Amy and Richard and I'm certain they love each other. However, Richard seemed far more in love with Amy's bosom than her intellect and Amy loved the romance of Richard's secret occupation almost more than his reality. I wonder how they'll weather Amy's first pregnancy and those lovely hormone flucuations. Will he be able to tear his eyes off of her bosom long enough to worry about the odds of her surviving childbirth? Will she be understanding when he runs and hides at her first irrational emotional outburst thanks to those oh-so-wonderful hormones? I don't doubt that they'll weather it well as they have a lot in common, but they have a long way to go in getting to know each other and I imagine that it will be a major growth process.

By the way -- I think that the reason I expected them to change as a result of marriage is that both books, more or less, end with the marriages. The intense situations they lived through happened either right before (Amy) or right after (Hen) their weddings.

Thanks for responding!

Lee
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clarepayton
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the timeline and the heroine's journey

[ Edited ]
Thanks, Lauren, for reminding us about the timeline. I, too, imagined (apparently) a longer timeframe for these characters to have lived through. Our expectations about the character's "journey" are lessened by remembering it is all happening almost in the present. The matter of a character's journey, though, is interesting. We have come to expect our protaganist to journey, to experience new things and to grow from them, either to be physically or emotionally emancipated in some way. The Hero's Journey is what Joseph Campbell calls it (doesn't he?) and it's very much a part of Western literature, even today.

Some of us have already remarked about the course of Eloise's journey. What do some others think?

Message Edited by clarepayton on 01-11-200711:51 AM

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MaryKay
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****SPOILER

With respect to Eloise's personal journey--I feel as if she is just beginning
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MaryKay
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Re: ****SPOILER****

Don't you hate it when you slip and hit the wrong key!!!!

Anyway, with respect to Eloise's personal journey--I really believe that she is just beginning some sort of personal growth as The Emerald Ring ends. We know by reading the previous books that she is in England doing research, but also "getting away" from some personal problems in the States. The research she does definitely enables her to develop in her own mind some fairy tale type (possible) romance with Colin that echoes the back and forth relationships of the heroines in the books. Just as the heroines in the stories think more about what is going on with themselves instead of what the heroes of the story are experiencing, Eloise doesn't think about what might be going on in Colin's life. As evidenced by her realization that she'd "...been wrapped in my own self-centered mantle of wounded ego..." upon learning of Colin's mother's accident, a small shoot of personal growth occurs as she recognizes that the world is NOT revolving solely around Eloise. Now, speaking ONLY for myself, there have definitely been times--especially regarding boys (How old is a male when he is considered to be a man? I've been married almost 14 years and I definitely married a boy, who thankfully is now a man...but I digress)that I have been totally self-centered. And, upon realizing the other's perspective, I can say that there was definite personal growth. So, to me, the a-ha moment for Eloise is the beginning or her emergence from her egocentric wallowing. (We can all identify with that kind of wallowing I am sure--nothing to fault her for!) And, what a great bonus that, upon her epiphany, she gets a date with the cute boy!! I look forward to reading of her continued growth as well as the fleshing out of Colin's character. (Keep your minds out of the gutter, you know what I mean--the DEVELOPMENT of Colin's character.)
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LaurenWillig
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Re: ****SPOILER****

Hi, all! Sorry to be so long in responding to such wonderful and thoughtful comments. It was One of Those Weeks at work (one of the sort you so well summarized in your introduction, MaryKay!).

Anyway, I just wanted to pop back in and say that I really appreciated your insight, LeeAnn, on the various couples (and your personal reminiscences). As you pinpointed so well, Richard and Amy are the couple I worry about the most. They may not be youngest age-wise, but they're definitely youngest emotionally. It's something that's come up a good deal for me recently as I've worked on the new book, and watched the characters thrown together again. Miles, interestingly enough, is the character who seems to be most growing into himself (Henrietta's version of growing into herself is to become her mother), while Richard, once away from the dashing escapades that gave him purpose for so long has become-- well, a bit petty and petulant. And, unfortunately, he's just enough aware of it to make him feel guilty and thus even more ill-humored. I wonder if the dramatic circumstances of their marriage left Richard and Amy less equipped to deal with adulthood than otherwise. All of the circumstances surrounding their courtship happened so quickly that they never really had time to get to know each other, or grow together, or contemplate what would happen afterwards, and now they're both floating around at loose ends, with no clear vision of where the future is supposed to take them. I sense trouble ahead there.

MaryKay, I loved your comments about Eloise-- they're very prescient! The bits I'm working on just now, in the new book, all deal with Eloise's shock on realizing that Colin has-- gasp! horrors!-- concerns of his own, that don't necessarily tally with her dramatic imaginings (or all revolve around her). As you so aptly put it, there's a lot of "fleshing out" involved. : )
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politikgirl
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Re: ****SPOILER****

Wow. I've really enjoyed reading everyone's thoughts here; some of these things have popped into my head a few times while reading the books as well.

Something I wanted to join in on: Eloise. With Eloise, I feel that while she may not be as mature as she could be, she is growing as she witnesses both the things that are happening to the people that she's researching (for example, learning that the heroic, male Pink Carnation that she 'worships' is, in fact, female, and instead of being a dashing rakish man, is actually a very intelligent and brave young woman - the ultimate prototype for a more "progressive" heroine) and getting to know Colin. I cite these two things mainly because they are the primary subjects of the books (the historical part and the Eloise-Colin relationship) and therefore, form the basis of what we as readers can evaluate about Eloise's character. I really enjoyed seeing Eloise get to know Colin in the 3rd book outside of her own, somewhat self-centred concerns, and I think the gradual move towards a romantic relationship between the two characters reflects two things: (1) Eloise becoming less self-centred and "obsessed" (I use the term very loosely) with her research, and thus more "ready" for a relationship and (2) Colin becoming more trusting and open with Eloise.

That said, I love the character of Eloise - I see so much of myself in her - and am perhaps just a *tad* biased.
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Vinh
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Re: ****SPOILER****



politikgirl wrote:
I really enjoyed seeing Eloise get to know Colin in the 3rd book outside of her own, somewhat self-centred concerns, and I think the gradual move towards a romantic relationship between the two characters reflects two things: (1) Eloise becoming less self-centred and "obsessed" (I use the term very loosely) with her research, and thus more "ready" for a relationship and (2) Colin becoming more trusting and open with Eloise.






Well, said.

I like Eloise, it must be wonderful being that passionate about something.

I admire that in the later books that she can step back from it and take notice of things outside of her and her research. Perhaps, at the end of all this research what she will find is not the end of the mystery but instead discover who she really is and what she is capable off.
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SoniaW
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Re: ****SPOILER****

I think Eloise's devolpement is well done. We only see snatches of it, but in a sense, her development matches that of the protagonists in each book.

Amy is the youngest one of them all emotionally. She's a girl with big dreams and almost no basis for realtity, even though with what Richard went through in the first book, she should have gotten a nice big dose of it. She and Richard are still children. They have spent so much of their lives immersed in espionage, practicing and otherwise, that they have left no growth for anything else. This is a mirror for Eloise and Colin (well what we've seen of Colin). Eloise is obsessed with her history books and her historical men, I get the feeling that she's not the most social of women, which is perfectly fine. She has a bit of a one track mind: Who is the Pink Carnation? and she won't stop to consider what the consequences of her actions could be, i.e. intruding upon people's lives when they don't want to be intruded upon.

Henrietta is the next step. She is a bit more wordly than Amy is, but she's still quite sheltered due to her position in society. Furthermore, like Amy, her notions of espionage is still a little romanticized, her and Miles both. Even though Miles has got a pretty good idea of the dangers of espionage, he for awhile, didn't take into account how all of his espionage could have somehow affected Hen. They are just truly learning about each other as they get married, not as best friend's sister and older brother's friend, but as individuals. I don't think they've quite gotten past that by the end of the Masque of the Black Tulip. Eloise is at the same point, like others have mentioned, she has some inkling about the effect she has on the lives of others, but not really. Her self confidence is rebuilding after the fall it had taken with Grant. Her interaction with Colin flows more, and feels more natural.

Letty is a baby step. Of all of the main protagonists (I want to stick Jane on the ideal pedestal for now), she is the most realistic so far. She's the plain girl, always overshadowed by her sister. She never really truly fits in anywhere, and is more comfortable alone than with others. Geoff is Letty's mirror. We see throughout the book that Letty gains more and more self confidence to act around Geoff, or at least be strong enough to quash her feelings when she needs to. I feel that her character is an anticipation of what Eloise's character could be as her relationship develops with Colin.

Ok...that was a little muddled, but I don't know how to explain it better. It just seems that as the historical females become more and more developed and worldly, so does Eloise.
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politikgirl
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Re: ****SPOILER****

That's a great analysis. I hadn't thought about the parallels that way, but I really agree with you.
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dianeh
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

I believe that Eloise is destined to remain a researcher because of a couple of reasons. 1) She gets too caught up in the letters and journals, which tells me that she absolutely loves getting into the lives of the people she is researching. 2) She had a gorgeous man with her in an empty house (Black Tulip) and she totally forgot about him even before he left the room! That screams "RESEARCHER" to me. She's into details, and that seems to be a prerequisite for researchers. Of course, this is just my humble opinion.
Diane
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SoniaW
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

I agree! But Eloise also has a spirited imagination, I can easily see her applying her research into a book or twenty. She strikes me as one of those people who just have to get their idea out; as much as Eloise enjoys being lost in the Napoleonic era, she enjoys sharing her findings.
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dianeh
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Re: Early Chapter Discussion: A Dreamy Student

Yes, I do have to agree with you there, Sonia. It was very evident in Pink III that, on the date with Jay, she loved being able to tell Colin how clever she was in finding out about Letty and Geoff (I'm pretty sure this isn't a spoiler). In fact, if you're going to go to all the trouble of reading thousands of pages of letters, journals, etc., it stands to reason that you would want the research for a specific reason; ie., book, Ph.D. dissertation, what have you. So I definitely have to agree with your assessment.



SoniaW wrote:
I agree! But Eloise also has a spirited imagination, I can easily see her applying her research into a book or twenty. She strikes me as one of those people who just have to get their idea out; as much as Eloise enjoys being lost in the Napoleonic era, she enjoys sharing her findings.

Diane
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