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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 23 Aug 2017, 11:58 
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I don't have a problem with the idea of Robin becoming a nun, but if she'd wanted, EBD could have easily kept her in the frame by having her take Beth Chester's role as governess to the younger children until they go to school.

As for brats, to me the word means badly behaved children, while EBD uses it to refer to children generally, which is why it jars. Plus she uses it obsessively in this book, much like the word moke in Three Go.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 23 Aug 2017, 12:33 
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Quote:
if she'd wanted, EBD could have easily kept her in the frame by having her take Beth Chester's role as governess to the younger children until they go to school.


I'm glad she didn't do that. I just wish she hadn't written her out so completely, but left open the possibility of letters and visits.

Robin's too old and too highly educated for the role of mother's help/nursery governess. So is Beth, but I'll come to that when we discuss Barbara


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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 23 Aug 2017, 13:28 
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JayB wrote:
I'm glad she didn't do that. I just wish she hadn't written her out so completely, but left open the possibility of letters and visits.


I doubt we'd have seen her again regardless, except for maybe Reunion. We get little news even from Madge from here on so I doubt Robin would have got a look-in either. There's very much a sense of the board being cleared of all the major UK era players in this book: Robin, Daisy, the Russells, the Bettany girls. I think EBD definitely wanted the focus on the La Rochelle clan and Mary-Lou's Gang in school, and the Maynards outside it, for this next era. Then once ML leaves, the way is clear for the triplets to become the main protagonists.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 23 Aug 2017, 18:51 
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It was a great shame EBD removed Robin's father when she did, presumably to clear the way for Robin to live with Jo.

If EBD had left him, he could have gone to England to get a job before the San re-opened and Robin could have gone to live with Jo anyway to keep her company when Jack went to fight.

Ted could then have gone to work at the San when it went to England or done war work. Robin could still have been with Jo until she finished school.

Surely Ted could then have managed to get some kind of tiny house to live in so that Robin would have had a home? Robin could have done all the other stuff but then gone to Carnbach or somewhere else in England to teach so she could still be quite near her father.

A convent is so extreme for a girl who had never before shown any inclination for the religious life.


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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 24 Aug 2017, 01:56 
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Audrey25 wrote:
It was a great shame EBD removed Robin's father when she did, presumably to clear the way for Robin to live with Jo.


I wonder if EBD ever thought "darn! wish I hadn't killed XX off because I need them now!" :D

She wrote Capt Humphries deathbed scene so she couldn't even have him MIA. She could say he had fallen down a crevice, been presumed dead, but was rescued when he fell into a cave and was found by another mountaineering party. He lost his memory so he has been living as a mountain guide all this time. But one day he falls into the same crevice and whacks his head and ends up back at the same place where he originally fell. He remembers everything about his past life but only to the point that he fell. So the world is still in the 1920s to him and the CS people including Robin have to rehabilitate him.

Quote:
A convent is so extreme for a girl who had never before shown any inclination for the religious life.


At least with Margot there are hints of it. And the fact the first thing Rosalie thinks when there are comments about a change in Robin's life is she is about to get married, shows not everyone took the "she shouldn't get married" advice to heart.

JayB wrote:
She has an Oxford degree; she didn't need anything more. It wasn't necessary to have a teaching qualification if one had a degree back then. And she joined a teaching Order, so she must have had some interest in teaching.


I completely forgot she went to Oxford! So yes, she could have taught. What if she showed up at the CS as a teacher and totally ignores Joey's advice :D

Cheers,
Joyce

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Last edited by Joyce on 24 Aug 2017, 05:08, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 24 Aug 2017, 03:47 
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Okay, I've posted the start of the Robin story at

http://www.annersley.co.uk/viewtopic.ph ... 194#p16194

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 24 Aug 2017, 14:57 
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I think EBD didn't know what else to do with a grown up Robin, I've always wondered just why she couldn't get married? Poor health doesn't stop people and by all accounts, by the time she is 26 she seems pretty sturdy.I've no idea but surely being a nun is not something for those in poor health either?


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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 24 Aug 2017, 16:12 
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I think EBD thought that Robin the angel-child was too pure and lovely for the rigours of sex and childbirth so being a nun was the perfect solution, but not a very sensible one if she still was delicate. No-one in the Order would cosset her or forbid her to go out in the rain!


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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 01:54 
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Because my first (and, for several years, only) CS books were Eustacia and Does It Again (and I liked Eustacia the better of the two), Goes To (from the library) was a favourite of mine. I like Reunion for the same reason.

The reunions with Joey's friends, the adult Robin and Daisy, and Primula getting a front seat for once were all important factors for me.

As I read it around the age for which the CS were intended, I didn't think twice about why Joey might not know where her friends were living (oddly, with the Internet age, it's become completely possible not to know where a friend lives!). I have never found the remark to Simone offensive. It is how people talk among their friends - it's a very "real life" touch"

The one thing I find odd as an adult is that the CS is also moving in (and presumably has to be ready for x number of girls at a specific date) yet they can spare staff to look after Maynard children. I wonder how Karen felt about that! The CS staff being expected to help at Freudesheim remains an oddity for the rest of the series.


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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 04:02 
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Victoria wrote:
The one thing I find odd as an adult is that the CS is also moving in (and presumably has to be ready for x number of girls at a specific date) yet they can spare staff to look after Maynard children. I wonder how Karen felt about that! The CS staff being expected to help at Freudesheim remains an oddity for the rest of the series.


I think Joey just thinks of herself as part of the school so she calmly appropriates them whenever she needs help.

Later on in Reunion, when there is an accident and the floor in the dining room needs cleaning, she asks for one of the maids from the school to come and help Anna. I know it's the holidays, but she just says it very matter of factly, so you get the feeling it's normal procedure for her.

I wonder how she would react if Miss Annersley asked her to lend Anna for the day in return!

This is also the book where we get a proper explanation of what Freudesheim looks like. I wonder - has anyone ever tried to do a design layout of the house based on what Jack describes?

Cheers,
Joyce

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 07:17 
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In this book, the rooms in Freudesheim are as follows:

Ground Floor

Entrance Way
2 big rooms (one for Saal, one for Joey's study)
1 small room (Jack's study)
Kitchen premises (presumably kitchen, pantry and dining room)

Second Floor

3 large bedrooms (triplets bedroom, night nursery, Jack and Joey's room)
5 smaller bedrooms (Stephen/Charles/Mike, Beth, Barbara, Primula, Jack's dressing room)
1 small room accessible by a ladder (Anna's bedroom)
3 bathrooms

Third Floor

7 bedrooms (unused)
2 bathrooms

Top floor

Large room (playroom)
assorted small rooms and closets (storage)

But later, it's described at one point as having had twelve bathrooms, and later than that as a main house plus two wings, one of which is used by the family, and one by Stacie Benson.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 08:06 
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Die Rosen is the same. It's originally described as "a chalet". OK, a chalet can be any size, but that doesn't suggest a mansion. By the end of the Tyrol books, it's got umpteen bedrooms and even a billiards room! Madge and Jem were presumably hoping to have children, but they wouldn't have anticipated having all the Bettany and Venables children there as well, so they wouldn't have provided for that many people. Maybe they built extensions in the gaps between books!

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 08:51 
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Joyce wrote:

I wonder how she would react if Miss Annersley asked her to lend Anna for the day in return!


Since as far as I can see there is nothing in any of the books to suggest that Joey is anything but extremely generous, I have no doubt that she would have been the first to offer such help if needed, let alone wait to be asked.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 09:45 
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jennifer wrote:
In this book, the rooms in Freudesheim are as follows:

Ground Floor

Entrance Way
2 big rooms (one for Saal, one for Joey's study)
1 small room (Jack's study)
Kitchen premises (presumably kitchen, pantry and dining room)

Second Floor

3 large bedrooms (triplets bedroom, night nursery, Jack and Joey's room)
5 smaller bedrooms (Stephen/Charles/Mike, Beth, Barbara, Primula, Jack's dressing room)
1 small room accessible by a ladder (Anna's bedroom)
3 bathrooms

Third Floor

7 bedrooms (unused)
2 bathrooms

Top floor

Large room (playroom)
assorted small rooms and closets (storage)

But later, it's described at one point as having had twelve bathrooms, and later than that as a main house plus two wings, one of which is used by the family, and one by Stacie Benson.


I have always been surprised that Freudesheim did not have more reception rooms. I seem to remember a comment in Joey Goes to the Oberland about getting a couple of sitting rooms ready in the new house but we only ever hear of the main sitting room.

Joey's study must have been massive bearing in mind that this room was also a contender to be the main sitting room.

Even the Maynard home in England had at least a small morning room as well as the drawing room but in Switzerland all we ever hear about is the salon.


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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 10:05 
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cestina wrote:
Joyce wrote:

I wonder how she would react if Miss Annersley asked her to lend Anna for the day in return!


Since as far as I can see there is nothing in any of the books to suggest that Joey is anything but extremely generous, I have no doubt that she would have been the first to offer such help if needed, let alone wait to be asked.


It was a joke! I realise humour is difficult to interpret at times especially when it's impossible to see the person face to face, but clearly I was kidding.

Back to the size of Freudesheim, we are also told in Reunion that the 'wing' given to Stacie had 6 rooms - two upstairs and four upstairs plus a bathroom. Jack also puts up a divider wall to separate it from the main house, which makes it sound like the house has separate wings or extensions, rather than being one large building.

Quote:
1 small room accessible by a ladder (Anna's bedroom)


How would this have worked? It's above the kitchen right? I always imagine Anna clambering into a bunkbed-like room every night.

I've heard people criticise the fact Anna gets such a small room when Freudesheim is so large, but she chooses it for herself as soon as she sees the house and naturally she would want to be on hand to the kitchen.

Having lived in HK for so many years where the "maid's room" is basically a cupboard (that's when there is one - I've seen places where the maid slept on the floor of the children's room) by comparison, it's generous to give Anna room to herself, let alone allow her to choose.

Cheers,
Joyce

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Last edited by Joyce on 25 Aug 2017, 10:32, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 10:31 
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Joyce wrote:
cestina wrote:
Joyce wrote:

I wonder how she would react if Miss Annersley asked her to lend Anna for the day in return!


Since as far as I can see there is nothing in any of the books to suggest that Joey is anything but extremely generous, I have no doubt that she would have been the first to offer such help if needed, let alone wait to be asked.


It was a joke! I realise humour is difficult to interpret at times especially when it's impossible to see the person face to face, but clearly I was kidding.


Sorry Joyce, as you say it is sometimes not possible to tell, and since there is so much negativity around about Joey now it is very easy for those of us who are fond of her, and cannot understand it, to misinterpret what is being said.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 11:15 
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I would have to agree about the negativity surrounding Joey, cestina, but I feel there's just as much negativity re Robin becoming a nun. Why on earth shouldn't she? Yes, there were other options for her, but I always felt there was a certain serenity in her character, and a self-containment that spoke of a vivid interior life. It doesn't matter that there's never been any intimation of a vocation. It can happen very suddenly. I read recently of one nun who was literally called by God as she wrote to her fiancé re their wedding. That Loreto nun is still going strong as an octogenarian.

EBD couldn't keep all her characters on stage all the time, so some inevitably had to fade into the background - though I could wish she hadn't done that with Madge, who is just as vivid and important a character as Joey.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 11:30 
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cestina wrote:
Joyce wrote:
cestina wrote:
Joyce wrote:

I wonder how she would react if Miss Annersley asked her to lend Anna for the day in return!


Since as far as I can see there is nothing in any of the books to suggest that Joey is anything but extremely generous, I have no doubt that she would have been the first to offer such help if needed, let alone wait to be asked.


It was a joke! I realise humour is difficult to interpret at times especially when it's impossible to see the person face to face, but clearly I was kidding.


Sorry Joyce, as you say it is sometimes not possible to tell, and since there is so much negativity around about Joey now it is very easy for those of us who are fond of her, and cannot understand it, to misinterpret what is being said.


I can appreciate how you feel about Jo because I am a great fan of Mary Lou. They are both meant to be 'good' characters but EBD's writing goes a bit over the top at times, especially as she grows older. Also, who would have expected her books to be scrutinized so closely by adults? Some books nearly 100 years later in a very different world.

I started reading the books around 1964 as a 10 year old and kept on reading them. It wasn't until I joined forums around 15 years ago that I realised the extent to which people had favourite characters. I know it is a strange thing to say but I cannot think of a single character back then that I particularly liked - they were all just there. Curiously enough I was never particularly fond of Len. I thought she was unbelievable because she was totally perfect. It's only since joining the forums that I have thought more about the characters as opposed to only the books and their stories.

Edited to add - just seen your comment Mary and I am afraid I am one of those who did not particularly like the Robin storyline but you are quite right in what you say. Also, as regards Madge. She was a marvellous character in the earlier books.


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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 12:40 
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I think part of the problem with Robin is that we don't see any of the decision-making. She doesn't really play a big role after Highland Twins, as Jay B said, so we don't really know what's going on with her, and we hear of her decision second-hand, from Jack. She does tell Jack, in Joey Goes, that it's something she'd been thinking about for many years, and that she'd probably have entered a convent sooner had she not felt a sense of responsibility to the Maynards, but it's the first that the reader's heard of it.

And, because she enters a convent in Canada and, as far as we know, none of the CS characters ever go to visit her, it's hard not to get the sense that she's being shoved out of the way - that's probably the bigger problem. Canada is an absolutely lovely country, and I love both Toronto and Montreal (it's never very clear who's based where!), but I don't see why Robin couldn't have entered a convent somewhere within easy visiting distance of the Maynards. Surely there are plenty of convents in Alpine areas with "healthy" climates :D.

The original "family four" of Madge, Joey, Juliet and Robin are in four different countries from this time onwards. OK, life takes people in different directions, and families and friends get scattered, but I find it sad that Robin, and, even more so, Juliet seem to be all but forgotten. I'm sure they weren't, and Joey does name Cecil after Robin, but we don't hear about them. Mind you, Madge and Joey's aunts were completely forgotten after out the first two years :lol: .

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 Post subject: Re: Books: Joey Goes to the Oberland
PostPosted: 25 Aug 2017, 12:48 
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Robin does get a story line, two in fact, in Adrienne and the Chalet School.

Incidentally, if anyone has read Aging with Grace - the Nun Study (a fascinating book) they will know that there are definite advantages, health-wise, to becoming a nun....

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