fire and hemlock people
Dorian E. Gray
israfel at eircom.net
Sat Aug 20 14:06:27 EDT 2005
> The same feeling as in F&H is in *Time of the Ghost* and *Hexwood*: really
> nasty people (or godlings) choosing victims. It ought to be there in *The
> Homeward Bounders* as well, but somehow it isn't, and I think that may be
> because the They lot are universally victimising everyone, rather than one
> or two chosen and viewpoint or near-viewpoint individuals. The larger the
> nastiness and the wider it is spread, the less one identifies with
> individuals being picked on through no real fault of their own.
I think you may have just put your finger on why "The Homeward Bounders" is
one of my less-liked DWJs I never could figure it out before, because the
book contains a lot of elements I love, but remains for me unloved.
And now that you've said it, I think it's that non-personal thing. Jamie is
a random victim (that's even stated in the book), and he never manages to
become anything other than random. Which may well be what DWJ intended, but
I think I prefer fictional antagonism to be a bit more
I'm also now thinking, in F&H and in "The Time of the Ghost", the protags
actually fight against the antags. They get up and do stuff. ("The
protagonist must protag.") Jamie has a strong tendency to "go with the
flow", and merely react to what happens around him, whereas Polly and Sally
both initiate things.
And again with "Archer's Goon" - Howard reacts. He doesn't initiate
much...no, he does initiate, but it doesn't seem to accomplish much when he
does. He complains that his father is a passenger, but I think he is too.
"Archer's Goon" is a fun-and-fluffy book, but it doesn't kick me in the gut
the way F&H or TotG does.
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