introduction etc (was DWJ in Israeli newspaper)

Hallie O'Donovan hallieod at
Wed Feb 18 18:15:38 EST 2004


With her usual impeccable timing, Becca (my 17 y.o. daughter, Ika, 
who used to post here from time to time, and may again) came out with 
a very relevant remark.  I got bumped off the computer earlier, and 
she discovered something quite disturbing about a friend.  A little 
bit after she'd told me, it occurred to me that this threw new 
wrinkles onto a plan which I'd already thought fairly horrendous. 
When I mentioned this to her, she moaned 'Oh, please don't, I'm 
*repressing*!'  :)

>Hallie (hello, Hallie) added to my list (hmm - do two examples constitute
>a list?) of favourite DWJ Types:
>>  You forgot the Awful Boyfriend - verified as spot-on by a few of us!
>Eep! Examples, please - I'm drawing a blank, apart from Seb in F&H...

Also Julian in TotG.  Those were the two discussed.  Possibly we 
could slide in Robbie, isn't it? from Deep Secret, though I'm not 
sure he counts as we mostly just see the after-effects he's caused.

>That's sort of scary. Ooh. My brain just skittered off to Tacroy, who I
>hadn't considered before but who is an early example of The DWJ Splendid
>Selfish Boy, though probably quite a good boyfriend.

By the end?  Yeah, I think he'd be grand.

>Sorry. My mind is like a flock of birds today. Thanks for reminding me of
>Nick's "boil" analogy, which is *exactly right* and reminded me of (or
>gave me an excuse for posting about) the line that I use to explain DWJ to
>those who know not thereof, which is from the Dark Lord of Derkholm, and
>concerns elves:
>"They were all nearly seven feet tall. Derk found them a bit much."
>I can think of whole *novels* on the exquisiteness of elves that can be
>boiled down to those two sentences. Oblique, spot-on, and not lingered
>over or show-offy.


>Love, Ika
>PS: re Cynthia Voigt & the Tillerman books:
>>  and aside
>>  from the inadequate or abusive parents, there's Maybeth as well.  She
>>  breaks my heart every time, and I'm convinced (on no evidence mind),
>>  that Voigt based  her on a student she encountered while teaching.
>I hadn't thought that before, but it's instantly convincing - and it would
>mean I could add the Tillerman saga to Anne Fine's _How To Write Really
>Badly_ as books which put school in a wider context and demonstrate that
>children who fail there can have worth outside and after school, which is
>so important - and particularly nice from a teacher or ex-teacher, who can
>be* too prone to assume the student's life revolves around what goes on in
>the classroom.

Oh, we loved HTWRB in this house as well.  That's a list that would 
warrant expanding, maybe?  There have certainly been moments when 
it's an idea that *good* books showing would be nice to have to hand. 
(That last sentence is a mess but I'm too tired to repair it.)

>*by which I mean I can be. No aspersions cast on persons living or dead etc.

Didn't think there were.  My cousin visited from the States a few 
years ago, and I found out then that he'd had Cynthia Voigt for High 
School English - a treat he certainly hadn't appreciated at the time! 
I was very jealous, as I'd just missed having her, though I did know 

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