starting Abhorsen discussion

Melissa Proffitt Melissa at Proffitt.com
Tue Apr 22 02:37:10 EDT 2003


On Mon, 21 Apr 2003 10:02:40 -0600, Robyn Starkey wrote:

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>>On re-reading _Lirael_ I was more annoyed by the length.
>
>I didn't mind the length from a plot point of view, but I did notice that 
>it wasn't as richly written as Sabriel. I think it could have been shorter 
>if someone had imposed a restriction on Nix, but since (from what I 
>understood and heard) he was being given the opposite ecouragement - ie 
>make it longer - the writing is not as dense at the sentence-level.

>Abhorsen is much worse as far as unnecessary wordage is concerned. I 
>noticed that there were a lot of sentences of the Babysitters Club style 
>exposition in the book (Lirael remembered that Sabriel, Sam's mother, was 
>her own sister, that kind of thing), which he never would have written in 
>Sabriel. I was speculating that maybe he got a different editor with a very 
>different agenda or something. Reading the 3 books close together makes the 
>style change much more obvious.

I find it difficult to notice the style in any of these books when I'm
reading them the first time.  Except to think that perhaps the 2-volume
split of the Lirael/Abhorsen text really could have been handled better.
But this also gives me something to look forward to...sort of.  (I do
remember the sentence you referred to above.  It really stood out, which was
very bad.)

>The Nick/Lirael thing just ticked me off. Why was it necessary? Why did Nix 
>go to all that trouble to show all those women of the Clayr who were above 
>needing romantic relationships, and then have Lirael (who was supposed to 
>revere them) go all goopy over pathetic Nick?

Oh, brother.  I said I saw this one coming way too early, and because it was
in _Lirael_ I really expected it to be the result of the two meeting and
getting to know each other in the normal way.  (Or even, heaven forbid, her
nursing him back to health--shudder.)  Did Nix really have to resort to
pairing them off like that?  That was the only disappointing bit of the
ending.  I could have understood if she didn't follow the Clayr women's
pattern of being very self-sufficient, given that she felt like such an
outsider (you know how that usually works, where the outsider either breaks
all the traditions or becomes the ultimate example of the society she's not
a part of) but she barely even knew Nick.  I wanted to believe in it, but it
felt like too much closure.

I don't know.  I can't decide if Lirael seemed like someone who would have
been satisfied with short-term relationships, Clayr upbringing or no.  It
wasn't really touched on much.  And so it's equally hard to say whether she
would have fallen into some kind of romance with Nick.

Melissa Proffitt

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