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Amanda_R
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Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions

[ Edited ]
Discuss your first impressions of the main characters. Who did you like best initially, and why?


Note: This discussion topic is particularly suitable for the earlier chapters of Burning Bright.

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Message Edited by Amanda_R on 04-24-2007 04:00 PM

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jardine
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions

I'd say Maggie Butterfield insofar as she's a bit of a rebel who does not beat about the bush. She has to fend for herself in a family who has trouble living decently and yet, she does not become a petty criminal - as one would have expected considering her father and brother's attitudes. At times arrogant maybe - when addressing William Blake - she knows what she wants and also helps the people she feels close to. Maggie is a mixture of contraries and she perfectly embodies this theme throughout the novel.
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maxcat
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions

I agree with Jardine; Maggie is a real independent woman but knows her way around. She really looks for trouble and tries to pull Jem in her schemes.
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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Mariposa
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions

It is hard for me to write now about first impressions because I have already finished the book, but...looking back I am going to say the character that I felt closest to at the beginning of the book was Anne Kellaway. She had just lost her son and now she was being asked (told?) that she had to move away from where her memories of him were strongest. Now it might be said that moving would be a healthy thing to do, because one has to let go of those who passed on, but that is not such an easy thing if you have suffered the loss of a child. So she is being pulled away into a totally different world from the one she is used to and she is being pulled away from all the places that awaken the memory of him in her. That is no easy thing.

Lizabeth
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MsGourmet40
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions

Though I just finished the book - Maggie is my favorite character. She is spunky, a fighter, does not want to conform to what her family wants her to do or cares what other people thimk of her especially the Kelloway's landlady Miss Pelham and she has an air of mystery until close the end when all is revealed. I hoped there would have a little more of Mr. William Blake's Character maybe the next book?
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Choisya
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions

Yes, Maggie is my favourite character too for the same reasons and I agree that more could have been made of the William Blake connection. When she went into their garden after leaving home I hoped they would adopt her!



MsGourmet40 wrote:
Though I just finished the book - Maggie is my favorite character. She is spunky, a fighter, does not want to conform to what her family wants her to do or cares what other people thimk of her especially the Kelloway's landlady Miss Pelham and she has an air of mystery until close the end when all is revealed. I hoped there would have a little more of Mr. William Blake's Character maybe the next book?


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PoseiBoateng
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions

[ Edited ]
I was also hoping they'd adopt Maggie! She was a great character; the book really brought her to life. As for William Blake, I think his minimal presence in the book added to his character. I feel like if he had been a more central character it would have taken away from his depth, it would have been harder to explain how he was a brilliant man that kept to himself, but impressed and (at times) intimidated those he met when he happened to pop up. I think these qualities were expressed through his presence (and at times lack thereof) in the book.




Choisya wrote:
Yes, Maggie is my favourite character too for the same reasons and I agree that more could have been made of the William Blake connection. When she went into their garden after leaving home I hoped they would adopt her!



MsGourmet40 wrote:
Though I just finished the book - Maggie is my favorite character. She is spunky, a fighter, does not want to conform to what her family wants her to do or cares what other people thimk of her especially the Kelloway's landlady Miss Pelham and she has an air of mystery until close the end when all is revealed. I hoped there would have a little more of Mr. William Blake's Character maybe the next book?




Message Edited by PoseiBoateng on 05-01-200710:23 AM

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jardine
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions

I may be wrong but I feel that if Tracy Chevalier had had Maggie adopted by the Blakes, she would have diverted the course of history (I mean Blake's biography). It reminds me of what she explained with "Girl" - when some readers were kind of frustrated with the end. I like it when endings are not conventional because this feeling of expectation goes beyond the book and makes us think about the story long after we have finished it whereas if our "appetite is satisfied" so to speak, we tend to forget the plot quickly. After a few months, it amounts to a blurred thing which we can sum up only in terms of start, middle and end. That is why I really admire Tracy Chevalier : she manages to convey feelings through scenes and images that are so vivid that we are still under their spell after a long time. There's a sentence Philip Astley says to William Blake in the book and I think it could be adapted to what Tracy Chevalier does in her novels : "You capture an essence, sir." And I find that this is one of the most difficult things to do in literature.
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LizzieAnn
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Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions

Jem is probably my favorite character. There's something about him that strikes a chord - that makes me care about him. The way he deals with the upheavals in his life, changes in his family, and his new surroundings make him interesting.

There's also something compelling about Blake, particularly when he "talks" to his brother Robert. Philip Astley is also a vibrant character, as is Maggie.
Liz ♥ ♥


Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested. ~ Francis Bacon
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kiakar
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions



Amanda_R wrote:
Discuss your first impressions of the main characters. Who did you like best initially, and why?




Note: This discussion topic is particularly suitable for the earlier chapters of Burning Bright.



Click on "Reply" to post your thoughts about this discussion topic, or click "New Message" on the main page to start a new topic thread.

Message Edited by Amanda_R on 04-24-200704:00 PM





Yes, my first impressions on my favorite character was of Jem. It was something so gentle about him. And then the braveness of his actions when looking out for his sister several times in the beginning. And he was so sensitive to the feelings of others.
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TinaSChang
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions

[ Edited ]
I personally like to sit in the frame of one character's perspective. Since Jem is the most common viewpoint at the beginning, I tend to immerse myself in him. I appreciate the way characters like Jem's father, Mr. Blake, Maggie and her family are described, seeing them through Jem's eyes. Somehow his father seems the most like me: a craftsperson who is caught in his work and glazes over with the love of it but is somewhat out of touch with people.

Message Edited by TinaSChang on 05-13-200712:50 AM

Message Edited by TinaSChang on 05-13-200712:52 AM

Tina S. Chang
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MegM
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions



Amanda_R wrote:
Discuss your first impressions of the main characters. Who did you like best initially, and why?




Note: This discussion topic is particularly suitable for the earlier chapters of Burning Bright.



Click on "Reply" to post your thoughts about this discussion topic, or click "New Message" on the main page to start a new topic thread.

Message Edited by Amanda_R on 04-24-200704:00 PM



I really think my favorite character is Maggie because she seems to have sensitive side hidden under the independent character that she shows to the world. She seems to be more three-dimensional than Jem (although I really like him too) and Maize. I have a feeling that I may feel like I'd like to have known more about Maize as I go on but I'm only about 80 pages in so far. Jem seems to be the only one that picks up on her sensitive side so far--except for maybe Mr. Blake. I'm looking forward to the ending that others have mentioned.

MegM
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kiakar
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Re: Early Chapters Discussion Topic: First Impressions



MegM wrote:


Amanda_R wrote:
Discuss your first impressions of the main characters. Who did you like best initially, and why?




Note: This discussion topic is particularly suitable for the earlier chapters of Burning Bright.



Click on "Reply" to post your thoughts about this discussion topic, or click "New Message" on the main page to start a new topic thread.

Message Edited by Amanda_R on 04-24-200704:00 PM



I really think my favorite character is Maggie because she seems to have sensitive side hidden under the independent character that she shows to the world. She seems to be more three-dimensional than Jem (although I really like him too) and Maize. I have a feeling that I may feel like I'd like to have known more about Maize as I go on but I'm only about 80 pages in so far. Jem seems to be the only one that picks up on her sensitive side so far--except for maybe Mr. Blake. I'm looking forward to the ending that others have mentioned.

MegM




I really loved Maggie. She wasn't given the best of worlds by a long shot. But she picked herself up most of the time and went for the gusto. And she flashed her heart all over the place showing she was one fine human being.
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