Luke and Astrid

Irina Rempt ira at
Thu Jul 6 03:15:08 EDT 2000

On Thu, 6 Jul 2000, Ven wrote:

>  Jessie wrote

> > I always thought Astrid's wistfulness was because what happened between
> > Siegfried and Brunnhilde was something which matched her own dreams,
> > somehow; the idea that love and the demands of love could be so beautiful
> > as to make any amount of unhappiness worthwhile.

That's something that's also passed my mind. What Astrid needs is
someone who makes her feel worthwhile, which she doesn't get in the
household she lives in - there's a whole culture of making other
people feel worthless there. I get a feeling that Astrid is there
more or less by mistake: she may even have married Ronald because she
thought that she could change him, or his situation.

> and Mary Anna shuddered at the thought of Astrid being involved 
> with someone of Luke's apparent age.

Hmm. As a woman married to a man eleven and a half years my junior, I
think I'm entitled to comment :-)
When we first meet Luke, he indeed seems to be in his mid-teens, but
at the end of the book he has matured considerably, and I'd give him
an apparent age of twenty at least. Astrid would be, what,
thirty-five? Does it say anywhere? And she's only had the wrong man
until now, so I can imagine that the age difference is not important
to her as long as the man is the right one (or at least *a* right

> I've collected some more support for my interpretation. Taking the 
> age objection first (something which struck me the first time I had 
> the idea) l think Luke's age is rather elastic, that he projects 
> himself to people how he wants them to see him. 

Exactly. Also, when he's no longer scared out of his wits he can be
more himself.

> The first time he 
> appears "he appeared a year or two older than David" which would 
> make him in his mid teens (I'm sure David is twelve but I've lost  the 
> reference). 

I don't think his exact age appears anywhere, but as he's just
started to do some serious growing, he's presumably in his early
teens. Certainly no younger than twelve and no older than fourteen.

> However Aunt Dot refers to him as "that charming and 
> nicely spoken child." p72. 

Aunt Dot seems to be the type of old woman who calls everybody under
thirty a child :-)

> The real turning point comes after Astrid has 
> guessed who Luke is -- as well it might. 

Ah, when she knows he's not a teenager, and his flattery may well be
serious, not boy's play.

> Going on to some of Jessie's comments I do think Luke is that 
> amoral and I'm not sure he is still in a relationship with the red 
> haired girl. 

Well, he *is* that amoral and he may have two things going at once...

> I agree on the reasons why Luke is tired of course but I still think 
> the "urgently" needs explaining. And why didn't he just got back to 
> Valhalla for some R&R?.

I can imagine that he still doesn't feel safe there. As for the
"urgently", have you ever gone without sleep for considerably more
than a day? After more than 40 sleepless hours when I came back from
Canada, I needed to go to sleep urgently!

> All IMHO of course, but is there anyone out there who agrees with 
> me? Please?

Parts of it :-)
> Here's a by the way, my friend and Dwj fan Sarah bought a copy of 
> Power of Three for 39p in a Bridlington junkshop. I said I'd post it 
> and make people jealous.  

The Puffin one with the proper picture on the cover? I have a copy,
fortunately, but it's the ugly new one. Yes, I'm jealous :-)


           Varsinen an laynynay, saraz no arlet rastynay.
irina at (myself)

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