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The Drowning Girl - Chapter 3 
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Post The Drowning Girl - Chapter 3
The Drowning Girl - Chapter 3



Tue Oct 01, 2013 1:35 pm
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Post Re: The Drowning Girl - Chapter 3
Imp is definitely odd. All those obsessive compulsive rituals that need to be repeated 17 times.

She raises the question "Do crazy people have the ability to perceive order and commotion in ways closed off to the minds of 'sane' people?" There was a TV show a year or two ago about an autistic boy who had a supernatural connection to events all over the world--this author isn't the first to suggest the idea that what appears to be 'crazy' is a different kind of sanity. I tend to agree with Imp, though, that the answer is "No." The brain is an organ of the body like the heart or the lungs, and a cancerous tumor is not an enhanced way of experiencing breathing.

The Drowning Girl: the title of the painting seemed paradoxical at first. How can the girl in the painting be drowning when she's standing ankle deep in the water? Then there is the evolving discussion of Saltonstall's history.... Could this be a painting of a ghost? Is The Drowning Girl the one who is drowning, or is she one who causes others to drown?

One of my favorite lines:
Quote:
History is a slave to reductionism.

I'm still not sure if this book is a realistic novel exploring sanity or a fantasy novel about supernatural creatures. I enjoy not knowing. That doubt feeds into my compassion for Imp--this book puts me a little bit in the same place she's in, not knowing what is real and what is unreal. I don't even know what is "factual" in the story. Did Eva really know Imp's and Abalyn's names? Did Eva really exist, even, or could she be a construct Imp created to explain Abalyn's leaving?

Did Perrault and Saltonstall both really dream of a woman dressed in red? Is that factual?



Thu Oct 10, 2013 3:58 pm
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Post Re: The Drowning Girl - Chapter 3
Strikes me there are several ways to interpret the painting and its title. I hadn't thought of the 'girl who drowns others' interpretation. I guess this might be simplistic, but I keep feeling that Imp is 'drowning' in her own inability to separate fantasy from reality, to know the facts and be sure they are correct. I think its definitely the authors intention to create doubt in the reader's mind as to what is real/truthful/factual, not just in the novel but in one's own life, and in that way we might not only empathize with Imp but somehow experience in a personal way the problems of insanity.



Sun Oct 27, 2013 6:26 pm
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Post Re: The Drowning Girl - Chapter 3
Imp's description of the Athenaeum was fascinating. Last Saturday, my wife and I spent three hours as volunteer docents at the Heritage Museum in a neighboring town. The building was originally a Carnegie Library, a lovely old two-story classical brick building with "HOMER" and "VIRGIL" (and of course "CARNEGIE") emblazoned on the front. I could imagine how it originally looked with its high ceilings and stack of books, rolling ladders and reading table. I mentally compared it to the new "bookless" library in Bexar County (think of San Antonio), Texas. Everything is digital, with workstations, laptops, e-readers and tablets (available for checkout if you don't have your own), but no books. While I love my Kindle, somehow this 'new' library gave me goosebumps.


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Mon Nov 04, 2013 6:09 pm
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