This week's reading has confirmed my feelings on my three most memorable characters. I continue to love Old Bailey even though he can 'bitch and moan’. When he’s really needed, he comes through. The marquis deC … the marquis deC! I am so unsure of him … I have a sinking feeling when he leaves the Earl’s Court … is that SOB going to double cross and sell out poor Lady Door and hapless Richard? Hunter? I’m not worried about her. She’s a mercenary and has reconciled her life and life expectancy long ago, but is she what SHE seems to be? I somehow think that her future and Richard’s will entwine … it’s all about those dreams he has of a beast … and she IS a hunter, right?
6 begins with Richard chanting the mantra, “I want to go home.” How do you
feel about Richard and his reactions at this point to the unexpected
adventure he finds himself on?
To answer this, I’m going to tell a story … a true story. When I was 9 years old, I needed to have surgery. My parents took me to
- The marquis de Carabas was even more mysterious and cagey during the first part of this week’s reading. What were your reactions to him/thoughts about him as you followed his activities?
He’s a scoundrel! He leaves them on the train at Earl’s Court with such bravado, and is almost vindictive when he encounters Lear, knee-deep in coins and half-mad people. He’s a trickster … a classic in folklore. And I don’t like him, but I know he has a huge place in the overall structure of the story. THEN! He sacrifices himself to Vandemar and Croup. His future doesn’t look good, as his head bump, bump, bumps its way up the staircase below Marble Arch and bad goes to worse …
- How did you feel about the Ordeal of the Key?
Never having questioned my sanity, I rooted for Richard to recognize the ‘trick’ of the ordeal. I actually felt that the ordeal was so obviously manipulative that it was laughable.
It was clever of Gaiman to bring the little crystal bead that belonged to Anaesthesia into play, but that section was a big yawn for me. I knew Richard would come through the ordeal and I guess I wanted something with more pizzazz.
- This section of the book is filled with moments. Small, sometimes quite insignificant, moments that pass within pages but stick with you. What are one or two of these that you haven’t discussed yet that stood out to you, or that you particularly enjoyed?
My big moments that made me stop and either shudder or chuckle or re-read were the passage when Old Bailey and the marquis have the exchange about the silver box and the marquis refuses to take it back – why? What purpose does it have? I wondered why Lady Door was so scared of Serpentine and finding herself under Serpentine’s roof. The scene in the museum and walking into the Angelus door was surreal and stuck with me – what an image! And then … that crucifixion … yuck!
- Any other things/ideas that you want to talk about from this section of the book?
Well, it has taken a decidedly Christian bent here … and I’m wondering about our Islington and the sorrow that the Blackfriars have when they lose the key to Richard and Door. The statement, "God help us all" is very telling. What was supposed to be a good thing suddenly has a dubious outcome … is Islington a good angel or a bad angel? I have a really bad feeling here ...