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 Post subject: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2017, 10:49 
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“Spoiler Alert”. Please do not read any further if you do not want to know anything about the book. These discussions are completely open for discussion (hence the spoiler alert).

This was the very first fill in ever written for the Chalet School series and is published by Collins Publishers in 1995. The book focuses on visitors from the visiting school, Grange House mentioned at the Prefects meeting in Head Girl. A large portion of the book focuses on the visiting school and their viewpoint. The school starts off with Juliet making a new friend in London – Patricia. Patricia’s school is heading to the Tiernsee in Austria and they agree to look up the Chalet school. The school term starts with the news that French and German days will be started. A new school hall is built and Joey faces her first term without Madge being at the school. Miss Annersley and Matron Lloyd are introduced to the school and Bette Rincini is made Head Girl. Grange House arrives and due to a mix up at the Stephanie, the date they are expected is the 7 October, not the 4 October. The Chalet School soon comes to their rescue and agrees to provide meals for them. This cements friendly relations between the school and the Chalet School becomes the unofficial hosts of Grange House, providing evening entertainment and showing them around the area. The school have friendly matches with Netball and Hockey. Middles get up to their usual mischief and we follow Grange House as they travel to other parts of Austria. Joey invites Patricia to the Sonnelpe to spend Half Term with her and Patricia gets to discuss he long held dream to be a doctor with Madge and Jem and the difficulties she faces with her Mother not being supportive of the goal. After Half Term, Elisaveta hears the distressing news that her Grandfather is dying and she is requested to return home. And the school holds it usual Christmas Play.

So what did everyone think of the book? Given it is the first of the fill ins and published by Collins how does it compares to other fill in where the bulk are published by GGBP? The author makes it very clear in her foreword that she wasn’t attempting to write in EBD’s style. Does that jar with people or do people not mind the very different writing style (including referring to Mademoiselle Lepattre as Mam’sell)? Please discuss this and anything else you can think of.

On a side not, due to the poor responses to the discussion starters for the fill in books, I have decided not to continue posting them after this one. It doesn’t appear that people are interested in discussing the fill in’s, so therefore I will be stopping. Thank you to all those who took the time to write something in the previous threads.

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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2017, 11:36 
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Hi Fiona, I just wanted to say I've enjoyed reading the threads on the fill-ins. Apart from Juliet (and it goes back several years), I hadn't read any of the fill-ins you've been posting about recently but I had enjoyed the threads. Not intended to make you continue but just to let you know I've been reading them every week, thank you :)


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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2017, 11:45 
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Thank-you from me, too Fiona - it's a lot of work summarising a book. My reason for not posting is the same reason as roversgirl's - the only fill-in I've read is Lesley's Hilda Annersley, Headmistress - but I've enjoyed hearing about them. And yes, not said to make you keep going!


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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2017, 13:53 
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Another Thank you from me Fiona. I kept meaning to start a re-read of the series so I am better placed to comment and just haven't quite got around to it- and I am getting further and further behind. :lol:

On the subject of Visitors. This is actually one of my favourites of the fill ins. Perhaps because I first read it when I was a kid and still discovering many if the original books. I always loved the intro at the start as well... it made me realise I wasn't the only person out there who read EBDs books. On the other hand to me it doesn't read as an EBD, the style is slightly different, but I think because it is so focused on the other school that the change in tone actually works quite well.

I love the start of the book with Juliet and I do actually think that is quite a CS way to start a book, with a scene before school starts introducing the new girl.

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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2017, 14:37 
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I also really like this book, but to me it has too much about the visitors and not enough about the Chalet School. The first chapter in London is interesting and the scenes when Patricia does first aid is very true to life. I also enjoyed saying farewell to Elisaveta. The final chapter set during the war is moving. This always seemed to me to be the first book where Joey is starting to mature a little. There are some lovely scenes set in Die Rosen and I like the Guide hike early on. This book seems less in the style of EBD than most of the subsequent fill ins.


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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2017, 15:32 
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Just to say, thank you Fiona for your work, I've really enjoyed reading this thread but haven't commented because I haven't read any of the fill-ins.


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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2017, 19:28 
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Thank you for all your hard work so far: I've enjoyed the discussions on the fill-ins. This one isn't one of my favourites, though, because a lot of the focus is on Patricia, a character created by the fill-in author, rather than on someone we "know".

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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2017, 20:54 
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Although I haven't read many of the fill-ins I am enjoying finding out what the books were about and also reading the general comments.

A lot of hard work for you, Fiona.


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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 27 Mar 2017, 04:59 
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Actually I was about to ask what happened to Visitors so I'm glad to see the discussion here.

I loved this book and was very impressed at how the author was able to bring an an entire group of 10 extra girls, provide them with a personality, not ignore the girls at the CS, and yet give everyone some airtime and make it seem complete.

Patricia is such lovely character and it is a shame she cannot appear in any further books. I would have loved to see her working at the San years later. In fact, do we ever see any female doctors working alongside Jem and Jack?

Cheers,
Joyce

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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 27 Mar 2017, 12:00 
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I also enjoy the fill in discussions but don't contribute because I haven't read them.


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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 27 Mar 2017, 14:14 
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Didn't Helen Mclelland write it using some notes e.t.c that EBD left? I'm sure the forward mentioned it, but haven't got the book handy to check...........!

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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 27 Mar 2017, 15:08 
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fio wrote:
Didn't Helen Mclelland write it using some notes e.t.c that EBD left? I'm sure the forward mentioned it, but haven't got the book handy to check...........!


Yes she did. She says in the Introduction, pp I - II, that when researching for her book Behind the Chalet School, she found some notes from EBD suggesting that she herself had planned to write a story set in the term between Princess and Head Girl. Although Helen had originally had no intention of writing a sequel, she later wrote the much shorter Joey And Patricia in response to readers who wanted to know what happened to Patricia.


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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 27 Mar 2017, 17:25 
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I'm sorry that you won't be continuing this but I understand why not. I haven't commented although I do have all the fill-ins, mainly because I've only read them two or three times at the most whereas the cannon books I've probably read dozens of times! So I know them better. Sadly life is too short to fit everyting in.

I did think of asking Aquabird it we could have a cannon book every fortnight not every week as I don't have time to re-read. However it would take over nearly two years to finish the series. :lol: Her summaries (and yours) are very comprehensive and jog the memory well.

Many thanks for what you've done.


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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 27 Mar 2017, 17:36 
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thefrau46 wrote:
I did think of asking Aquabird it we could have a cannon book every fortnight not every week as I don't have time to re-read. However it would take over nearly two years to finish the series. :lol: Her summaries (and yours) are very comprehensive and jog the memory well.


Oh good Lord, I doubt I could keep it up that long! :shock: But I wouldn't worry about not being able to re-read a book a week, some of the threads are still active three or four weeks after I've started them, and others get a bump now and then after a week or two of inactivity, which isn't exactly necro territory.

Huge thanks to Fiona for doing these threads, I couldn't have run to them as well as the canon books as there are quite a lot of fill-ins that I don't have, especially more recent ones.

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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 27 Mar 2017, 19:13 
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Hemming sheets
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Aquabird wrote:
thefrau46 wrote:
I did think of asking Aquabird it we could have a cannon book every fortnight not every week as I don't have time to re-read. However it would take over nearly two years to finish the series. :lol: Her summaries (and yours) are very comprehensive and jog the memory well.


Oh good Lord, I doubt I could keep it up that long! :shock: But I wouldn't worry about not being able to re-read a book a week, some of the threads are still active three or four weeks after I've started them, and others get a bump now and then after a week or two of inactivity, which isn't exactly necro territory.

Huge thanks to Fiona for doing these threads, I couldn't have run to them as well as the canon books as there are quite a lot of fill-ins that I don't have, especially more recent ones.

Thanks for answering and you are quite correct about many of the titles still being active.

I've just noticed my spelling mistake. :lol: Apologies!


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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 31 Mar 2017, 09:04 
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Thank you for having undertaken this Fiona. I am not sure that lack of discussion means lack of enthusiasm. I have read the threads with interest but have an in-built dislike of discussing books per se so would very rarely post. I avoid book clubs like the plague.

I shamelessly enjoy reading others' ideas though :)

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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 08 Apr 2017, 10:01 
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One thing I have always wondered when reading this - why does one of the 'visitor' girls bring a kilt with her on the trip?

Was it just something regarded as normal to wear so she just brought one along in case there was a night out and it's like having an evening dress?

And how heavy are they? For some reason (mainly because I only see them on formal occasions complete with bagpipes) I think of kilts as made of very thick heavy material.

cheers,
Joyce

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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 08 Apr 2017, 11:25 
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Joyce wrote:
And how heavy are they? For some reason (mainly because I only see them on formal occasions complete with bagpipes) I think of kilts as made of very thick heavy material.
In the military/ ceremonial context, yes, and it is really a man's garment, but in the UK and some other countries lightweight versions were made from the mid-19th century onward for children and were ordinary wear for them for much of the 20th century (SLOC and I both had them as kids).

Not having read the book, I can't answer for this particular example, but it could be a quite normal thing to wear.


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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 08 Apr 2017, 13:29 
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Yes I had a kilt too and it was normal winter skirt weight. I loved it.... Most of my friends had one.

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 Post subject: Re: Visitors for the Chalet School "Spoiler Alert"
PostPosted: 08 Apr 2017, 14:47 
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This is one of the few fill ins I've read, and I did enjoy it. I thought the world-building for Patricia was very good, and quite realistic for many girls of her class, where the focus was very much on getting your daughters 'out' and married off.

I did think it lagged a little in places where it focused too heavily on the Grange girls to the exclusion of the Chalet School.

I loved the Grange House girl (Veronica?) who liked to pose as very cultured, but dropped clangers all the time, such as mistaking Chopin for Mozart. Nice little touch of humour


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