_The Thief_, with spoilers galore--extra long for your enjoyment

Gross Family argross at bigpond.net.au
Sun Mar 10 06:27:35 EST 2002

Anita wrote:

>Okay, I have read the books now, after steadfastly not looking at all the
>spoiler messages. So I really appreciated Melissa's summary of the
>discussion so far. I have to say, I agree with her arguments in a
>theoretical way. *Except* I was not taken in by Gen's deception. I guess it
>has to do with having read a lot of Dorothy Dunnett, who is always
>'cheating' like this, so you are constantly on the lookout, and she is
>heaps more subtle. I thought Gen's actions were quite heavily signposted,
>and I wasn't taken in for a moment. This didn't spoil the climax of the
>book for me, because I was on the inner with the narrator, rather than
>being surprised.

> Please note, I am not saying Melissa is wrong, but I am saying, here's
> another perspective: I am not at all sure that the reader was necessarily
> meant to be taken in. In my reading, the book works just as well if you
> not surprised. I also think there is a well-established pedigree of
> that encompasses this kind of cheating, so I don't agree that *by
> definition* it spoils the book.

I don't care about being "right" or "wrong", and find different perspectives
valuable, including yours. I'm impressed by the fact that you weren't taken
in by the misdirection! I must admit I've never come across a book that uses
precisely this method of misdirection; I'm interested to hear that you have.

> I liked both the books heaps. One of the best things about The Thief was
> the description of the landscape, which I found very appealing. I suspect
> this is because I am homesick for Melbourne in this horribly cold burst of
> Calgary weather. Also, I like that she used my daughter's name in Q of A.
> will definitely read more if she writes more.

Ha! You *miss* Melbourne weather??? :-)

My daughter has an ancient Greek name also: Zoe.


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