Back to DWJ (was: Re: Elitism was Tam Lin)

Kyra Jucovy klj at
Thu Sep 14 09:13:23 EDT 2000

> I find this interesting because as I read _Power of Three_ it seemed that
> the others' reactions to Halla are reasonable.  I went back to the book for
> this, though, and now I'm impressed all over again with how talented DWJ is.
> (Keep in mind I'm not trying either to prove Kyra's point or refute it;
> these are my usual fumblings in the dark.)

I'm not going to "argue" or even discuss this with you, not just because
A) You are Always Right and B) To some extent we will just be getting into
completely subjective issues that are very boring to discuss
("But... but.. that's just the way it _feels_ to me!"), but also because
C) I don't have the book (grr...) ;-).

> Moril is a different case.  He's an ideal example of an unreliable or naive
> narrator: we see events through his eyes, but his perception is limited and
> can't be taken as absolute truth.  Although Moril puts his own internal spin
> on everything that happens, we still see the actual events, and the
> disparity between what Moril believes and what the reader sees is a way of
> characterizing Moril.  DWJ doesn't have to say "Moril still has a lot of
> growing up to do," she shows it through his own perceptions.  You could turn
> the story around, tell it from Brid's point of view, and it would be the
> same.

Yes, this is quite true and I agree with you very much, but, somehow, I
could never take that, neither in this book, nor in _Drowned Ammet_... I
was disappointed by the Dalemark series until I got around to
_Spellcoats_, which I think is wonderful.  I don't think I had trouble
understanding what type of story DWJ was trying to tell - both books _are_
about someone who is quite flawed and at the same time very talented
learning about some of his own flaws (I'd say "or her," but given _Crown_,
I'm not sure if Hildy counts), but I just couldn't enjoy either story very
much because the flaws that were being solved came through as so
glaring... I know I'm going to garner some animosity by saying this, but,
no, I really couldn't stand Mitt.  I'm sorry.  I think that both boys
remind me a little too much of some people I know who are very difficult
to be around, and that comes through into my reading of the book.  After
all, I absolutely hate "perfect" characters far more than I do those who
are flawed... especially the many characters I come across who are bloody
hypocrites, but the author never once seems to acknowledge this in the
book, and instead droops fawningly over them throughout the book... which,
fortunately is something DWJ never does.


> Melissa Proffitt
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