revered authors

Gross Family argross at
Sat Mar 16 23:39:01 EST 2002

> >  > >
> >>  >Ros, about halfway through _TQ of A_ , and enjoying it immensely
> >I
> >>  >had to grit my teeth through That Scene earlier on...)
> >>
> >>  Have you got to the stairs scene yet???  :)
> >
> >What stairs scene?? "-)
> >
> >Obviously not yet!
> >
> >(But I'm now already three quarters of the way through. Could I have
> >something?)

Now Hallie replied:

> Oh dear - I can't identify it by what goes before or after, and
> anyway, you should finish the book and *then* I can explain it.  :)
> There's just one scene which takes place on - not a staircase, but a
> LOT of stairs, and I thought it was a gorgeous bit of comic relief in
> the middle of some pretty heavy emotional stuff!  (But not only comic
> relief of course.)
> Hallie (trying to figure out if we can expect a post from you SOON to
> say you've finished it, or if it's too late.  Are you 11 hours ahead
> of English/Irish time do you know?).

As fate, or the gods, would have it, I was unable to receive or send email
for a couple of days after I sent my last email, and wasn't able to reply
immediately! (BTW, I *think* we are either about 12 hours or so ahead of US
time (depending on daylight saving and what area) but I don't know how
English/Irish time fits in with that.)

I've now finised _TQofA_. The stairs scene came a little after I last
wrote--a bit after three-quarters of the way through--and I agree it was a
wonderful scene, telling the reader so much in such a subtle way. In fact, I
found the whole book to be written in this subtle, understated style, so
much the more moving and powerful for its restraint, for what it *doesn't*
tell us as much for what it does. What a marvellous character study, of both
Gen and the Queen. I absolutely loved the book, and can only thank everyone
who recommended it, especially everyone who encouraged me to read it after
seeing That Spoiler.

IMO,  _TQ of A_ says much about the potency of restraint and subtlety in the
creation of character in writing. It was so moving at the end (for me,
anyway) because of the painstaking and intricate portrayal of the
personalities of both the central characters, and because, although I did
guess at the unltimate outcome, I felt that it was not at all a foregone


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