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 Post subject: Characters who do and don't last the distance
PostPosted: 29 Mar 2018, 09:49 
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Rescuing a Junior from the lake
Rescuing a Junior from the lake
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Joined: 15 Oct 2004, 13:57
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Thinking about the series as a whole, it's interesting how many characters are there for nearly the entire series without ever getting a major storyline, and also which of the characters from the early days are there at the end and which aren't. After reading the first few books, would anyone have thought that Rosalie Dene and Sally Denny would still be at the school 25 years later, whereas Madge would have been reduced to playing a bit part and Gisela and Juliet would pretty much have vanished? And, of all the girls who were at the school in Tyrol, would anyone have picked Nancy Wilmot as a probable future headmistress? Or Stacie Benson and Hilary Burn as Joey's future neighbours?

Obviously EBD had to bring new people in, and she couldn't have kept up with all the original characters, but it's quite strange who goes, who's brought back and who lasts the course – especially as so many people (Karen, Anna, Mlle de Lachennais, Matey, Miss Denny, Mr Denny) are there for so long without ever getting to be right at the heart of the action. Or is that just life? You have friends at school whom you think you'll be tottering around on zimmer frames with when you're in your 90s and then drift apart from in your 20s, and there are other people who always remain part of your life when you might not have expected them to, and people who – although the CS people didn't have social media! – you find again after years apart?

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 Post subject: Re: Characters who do and don't last the distance
PostPosted: 29 Mar 2018, 10:57 
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Sub-prefect!
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I think this is a really interesting topic Alison and that you are right when you ask whether it is very like real life.

Looking back at my life from a perspective of 76 years, this is very much how things have gone. The one great exception in the case of EBD is the relegation of Madge and Jem to such a minor role, which given both Madge's position as the founder of the school, and the closeness of the two sisters, doesn't make a whole lot of sense.

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 Post subject: Re: Characters who do and don't last the distance
PostPosted: 29 Mar 2018, 12:13 
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Having Miss Annersley for Civics
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Joined: 21 Jul 2012, 16:53
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The question of who gets brought back is one of the ones that has generated much comment previously, usually because people are disappointed that the 'returners' are, with the main exception of Grizel, either people who are only present in a minor way, like Hilary Burn and Stacie Benson, or are previously near invisible people like Nancy Wilmot, Winifred Silksworth and Irma Ancokzky.

I remember that I was disappointed about this as a young reader, but having tried to follow the characters through just the Tyrol and UK books, have come to realise the likely reason for it. People who have either not much back-story or not much front-story (as it were) are so much easier to write about - and perhaps if you're an author, more interesting, too...


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