Ile de Rien

minnow at minnow at
Sun Jun 8 17:40:39 EDT 2003

Hallie answered Anna:

>>I have only a short acquaintance
>>with Wells' books (though I'm in the process of reading further), but
>>London is one of the few ancient European cities that I don't find echoes
>>of in Vienne. Mostly I see Vienne as being part of some alternate-Italy,
>>maybe alternate northern Italy, though I'm not sure what exactly gives me
>>that impression, it's just the way I read it...
>Italy?  That's interesting.  I'd only felt sort of French from the
>Three Muskateers type feel to _The Element of Fire_ and the names.
>Though there is Ravenna or Ravena or however it's spelled, right?

Knowing nothing whatever of the books, if I read a back-cover blurb that
said they were set in Vienne I'd assume Vienna.

It's a place I have never been to and about whose history I know very
little (apart from it being a place it was Bad News if the wrong people
conquered it, and they held a Congress there in 1814 or so), so unless
there is really obvious Londonness about the city in the books I probably
wouldn't think "of course!  London!", I'd just carry on assuming Vienna in
happy ignorance.

Would that mean I got a very surreal idea of what's going on, in the books?


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