dwj-digest (Diana Wynne Jones) V1 #334

Philip.Belben at powertech.co.uk Philip.Belben at powertech.co.uk
Wed Jul 25 13:42:47 EDT 2001

Sally, so long ago that I've no idea whom she's quoting:

>> proposed, exactly, but suspect, maybe) that deep secret, dragon reserve
>> home eight, and hexwood are in the same universe.
> A Sudden Wild Magic is certainly in the Deep Secret universe. Rupert
> mentions someone who was "stripped" (like Maree) and survived for years.
> This is obviously Mark/Herrel (is that the name?) in Wild Magic.

Ooh.  That's a very confident "Certainly", Sally - and I don't think you're

Notable differences:

In DS, the multiverse is quite an orderly place, with well-defined ayewards and
naywards directions, in the shape of an infinity symbol.  In SWM, the multiverse
is a hopeless tangle in loads of dimensions.  They all take several goes to
visualise it, they all get different pictures, and nobody sees the infinity

In DS, time relationships between universes are fairly constant (and they didn't
even seem to be in different time zones).  In SWM, the time relationships are
notoriously "capricious" or even "chaotic".

Other things that I don't think quite fit:

I can't believe that the Magids would have allowed Arth's exploitation of Earth
to go unchecked for so long (argument from silence - my apologies)

I don't think Mark/Herrel is the stripped person who survived for years.  ISTR
(I haven't read DS recently) that the world he lived on was mentioned, and it
wasn't ours...  Also, the effects of stripping were different: yes, Mark did
have the colourless, washed-out look, but not to the same extent.  There was no
evidence that he had only half his mass, as Maree did.  (OK, it's another
argument from silence, but I think this would have been noticed, probably by
Zillah, and put in the narrative.)

> Mark is a little like Rupert in some ways,I think, but Zillah is not really
> much like Maree.

Agreed.  The computer guy who turns out to be a magic user...

On the other assertions:

Hexwood and Dragon Reserve:  I don't think so.  Hexwood is very much a
spacefaring universe, while I think DRH8 is a multiverse, although the Slavers
seem to be spacefaring.  According to the notes in Minor Arcana, DRH8 was
related to preliminary work on Lives; certainly worlds in the "Home" series are
referred to as analogues of each other.  She certainly took names from DRH8 for
Hexwood, which I think was a pity, since I was hoping for a novel _really_ in
the DRH8 universe, and I now think we won't get one :-(

Deep Secret and Dragon Reserve:  I like it!  I'd put the Home and Cath manifolds
a little way ayewards of Earth.

Deep Secret and Hexwood:  My comments about spacefaring again, only moreso.


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