The Thirteenth Tale: Middles (SPOILERS)

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The Thirteenth Tale: Middles (SPOILERS)

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Jan 31, 2011, 7:37am

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Feb 7, 2011, 9:10pm

Still reading this section...but I'm intrigued by Hester & the Doctor. Their "well-meaning" twins experiment makes me think of Dr. Frankenstein...scientific experimentation at the expense of others...very strange. Although her disappearance is seemingly causing Angelfield's continued decay, I was glad to see her go. Wonder if Margaret will be able to find her...

Feb 8, 2011, 5:59pm

I just finished this secton. Is it just me or does anyone else see the connections between all the classic books she mentions and her story? Bits of Jane Eyre, The Turn of the Screw and (even though I haven't read it yet) The Woman In White are teasingly part of the plot. I keep thinking that this book could very well have been written by one of the Bronte sisters.

The last section is quite short and I can see that once I pick up the book again I won't be putting it down until finished.

So much has been revealed, now I am eager to see how it all fits together.

Edited: Feb 8, 2011, 11:46pm

I just finished Middles myself. While I appreciated the 'experiment' Hester and the Doctor conducted on the twins from a purely psychological lab study perspective, I was put off with the self serving purpose of the experiment - not that scientific research has changed all that much in real life **sighs**.

You are right Judy, I see a number of connections with this story and the classic books mentioned. I did get a huge kick out of the prescription Dr. Clifton prescribed to Margaret:

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Case-book of Sherlock Holmes. Take ten pages, twice a day, till end of course. LOL!

Is it just me or did Middles have more of a rainy day mystery feel to it and less of the gothic? I am not complaining, loving mysteries like I do but I was wondering if the whole Charlie and Isabelle thing in Beginnings had conditioned me against milder gothic elements. Yes, the inclement weather is there along with the overall dark feel of the story but it is like it lost its punch for a more subdued impact.

I hope to finish Endings soon. I already have two co-workers interested in reading this one as soon as I finish it!

Feb 9, 2011, 9:14pm

I definitely feel that this is as much a mystery as a gothic tale, with Margaret thrust into the role of a detective trying to decipher a mind-boggling puzzle of family mysteries. Kind of like a Gothic Sherlock Holmes! ;-)

Feb 9, 2011, 9:37pm

Just finished Middles. In a word... underwhelmed. It's not as captivating as the first part. Still interesting but not as magical. I wholeheartedly agree, more mystery and less gothic.

Feb 10, 2011, 2:47pm

I'm not quite sure what to make of Hester. Good name, though ;-) I suspect she was added primarily in order to provide a bunch of detail about the situation from a different point of view, information that couldn't be provided through Vida's narration. The experiment serves to illustrate the depth of the connection between the twins. The tone becomes more mundane with the change of narrator.

Feb 10, 2011, 4:57pm

Jim - I know what you mean about Hester. I'm not sure if the reader was supposed to like her or not...but I know I definitely did not like her. She just seemed too wrapped up in her own ambitions and passions without truly caring about the human consequences of her actions.