[DWJ] Family (was Doctor Who and DWJ's non-family books)

Kyla Mackay-Smith kyla at sccs.swarthmore.edu
Sat Apr 21 08:39:46 EDT 2007


On Sat, 21 Apr 2007, Ika Willis wrote:

> Oh, damn, though, I really like *Magicians of Caprona* and that's a
> highly family-embedded book.  Back to the drawing board....

Perhaps it's got something to do with how the families are presented as
all the town that matters, and there's the family-of-choice bit in
breaking away from believing everything your own family says about the
other, and banding together with members of the other family?

> Kyla wrote:
>
> > Hm. Like Deborah, I love families of choice (see: Angel, end of season
> > 1). But my top two are Hexwood and Deep Secret, and while they're not
> > family-based, the way, say, Time of the Ghost is, I love the family
> > dynamics and connections there.
>
> Can you say more about that? I'm interested, because Hexwood and Deep
> Secret don't feel very family-dynamic-y to me (apart from Hume and his
> family-of-choice), so I don't immediately see what you mean.

I was thinking about Ann, and her loving fights with her mother, and how
Martin is both annoying and helpful. And Vierran's supportive parents, and
her mother saying "but he's not ours?" And the Vierran-Siri dynamic, which
feels a bit more like sisters, with Vierran feeling inferior. With Deep
Secret, it's the very strong relationship between Maree and Nick, and then
Rupert and his brothers and their casual sort of relationship. I guess I
think of families as giving people some place to come from, and while you
can get away from your family, it would probably seem odd to me if
no one in a book had any connection to their families, unless it were some
castaways-on-an-island type of setup. In the case of Deep Secret, it's
when we get to see how deeply Maree cares about Nick that I, at least,
thought, "oh, wait, she can't be this totally horrible creature Rupert
thinks." The relationships don't have to be family ones, but they are in
this case.

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