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 Post subject: Re: Seven Scamps
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2018, 04:16 
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I felt sorriest for Britta, who goes from undivided attention from her mother to being shoehorned into a large family in a foreign country. None of the Willoughbys seems to consider she might be struggling to adjust, and no one seems to care enough to make that point.
That's really interesting - I'm still coming off the Eustacia experience, and Britta's situation is amazingly parallel to Eustacia's (previously the sole focus of her parent(s), totally unable to cope with the social dynamics of a large united group of other children, moved to a foreign country, tells tales, is ostracised...)

Which makes the Willoughby family an odd sort of shadow-Chalet School, I suppose! Instead of the new girl being brought into line, it's the Willoughbies en masse who are "schooled". I'm sorry, though, that when she rewrote the theme, EBD moved away from the sympathy/inclusion she offered Britta.


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 Post subject: Re: Seven Scamps
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2018, 14:06 
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Housemate wrote:
Quote:
I felt sorriest for Britta, who goes from undivided attention from her mother to being shoehorned into a large family in a foreign country. None of the Willoughbys seems to consider she might be struggling to adjust, and no one seems to care enough to make that point.
That's really interesting - I'm still coming off the Eustacia experience, and Britta's situation is amazingly parallel to Eustacia's (previously the sole focus of her parent(s), totally unable to cope with the social dynamics of a large united group of other children, moved to a foreign country, tells tales, is ostracised...)

Which makes the Willoughby family an odd sort of shadow-Chalet School, I suppose! Instead of the new girl being brought into line, it's the Willoughbies en masse who are "schooled". I'm sorry, though, that when she rewrote the theme, EBD moved away from the sympathy/inclusion she offered Britta.


I didn't consider the comparison with Eustacia; that is interesting. When the Willoughbys remove all their stuff from their "glory hole," there is some authorial condemnation via Sigrid, who tears up. That is missing from Eustacia.

I think the difference is that EBD wrote Seven Scamps with an eye to reforming the Willoughby children whereas the Chalet School is above reformation.

Is there a seminal moment that causes Britta and the Willoughby children to get along? Was she involved in the donkey incident? I can't remember anymore.

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 Post subject: Re: Seven Scamps
PostPosted: 24 Jun 2018, 19:04 
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They like her even more when she puts something nasty into the curate's tea.

Why do the Willoughby family think that the cook is overworked when they appear to have salad for dinner followed by cold stewed fruit for pudding. even I could manage that every day.

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 Post subject: Re: Seven Scamps
PostPosted: 05 Jul 2018, 07:49 
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I got this book last Saturday, for my birthday, and finished reading it by Sunday. I enjoyed it but oh my gosh, five year old Tim's baby talk just made me cringe. He sounds more like a toddler still learning to talk!

Vaguely related but if Nan Blakeney marries David Willoughby, doesn't someone say something about "that will make her Aunt to Blossom Willoughby"? But David and Blossom are cousins so how can that make her an aunt?
Just an EBD-ism or have I got them mixed up with some other characters? :D

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 Post subject: Re: Seven Scamps
PostPosted: 05 Jul 2018, 15:16 
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RubyGates wrote:
I got this book last Saturday, for my birthday, and finished reading it by Sunday. I enjoyed it but oh my gosh, five year old Tim's baby talk just made me cringe. He sounds more like a toddler still learning to talk!


Ugh, yes, he reminded me of my 2-year-old niece. I found it quite annoying!

RubyGates wrote:
Vaguely related but if Nan Blakeney marries David Willoughby, doesn't someone say something about "that will make her Aunt to Blossom Willoughby"? But David and Blossom are cousins so how can that make her an aunt?
Just an EBD-ism or have I got them mixed up with some other characters? :D


No, you're right. Sir Piers and Nigel are brothers, so their children are cousins. I don't know if that's an EBDism or the speaker was talking about Nan being an honourary aunt. Most likely an EBDism though.

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 Post subject: Re: Seven Scamps
PostPosted: 05 Jul 2018, 15:52 
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mynameisdumbnuts wrote:
RubyGates wrote:
Vaguely related but if Nan Blakeney marries David Willoughby, doesn't someone say something about
Quote:
"that will make her Aunt to Blossom Willoughby"
? But David and Blossom are cousins so how can that make her an aunt?
Just an EBD-ism or have I got them mixed up with some other characters? :D


No, you're right. Sir Piers and Nigel are brothers, so their children are cousins. I don't know if that's an EBDism or the speaker was talking about Nan being an honourary aunt. Most likely an EBDism though.
I think the remark about 'that will make her aunt to Blossom Willoughby' is made about Beth Chester when she gets engaged. Still not sure how it works, mind, especially as we're never told who it is!


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 Post subject: Re: Seven Scamps
PostPosted: 05 Jul 2018, 16:32 
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Yes, it's about Beth. The most logical explanation is that Beth is marrying Noel Atherton, Blossom's maternal uncle, who is a childhood friend of hers - they were both part of the wedding party at Janie and Julian's wedding - but we're never actually told, which is odd. There's a reference to Beth going home for a summer wedding, but the bridegroom is never named, and there are no mentions of the various nieces, sisters and cousins at the school being bridesmaids together.

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 Post subject: Re: Seven Scamps
PostPosted: 05 Jul 2018, 22:15 
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Wonder if there was actally more detail in original draft and publishers asked her to cut it down a bit? She gives the impression of thinking she's told us more than she has


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 Post subject: Re: Seven Scamps
PostPosted: 05 Jul 2018, 22:16 
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I know the Chalet School has a bigger cast, but I find the La Rochelle folk much harder to keep track of. Everyone seems to have half a dozen siblings and they all become in-laws.

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 Post subject: Re: Seven Scamps
PostPosted: 05 Jul 2018, 22:27 
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ivohenry wrote:
Wonder if there was actally more detail in original draft and publishers asked her to cut it down a bit? She gives the impression of thinking she's told us more than she has
Quite possibly - but I also have a theory that EMBD didn't always write a book in straight order. It sometimes reads to me as if she's paused at one point in the text to write some other bit that's tugging at her sleeve, as it were, and then gone back to fill in the intervening bits. It would certainly account for some of the inconsistencies...


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