"The Falls", Part I/ Honeymoon

#99: Sept. - Oct. 2011 (Fiction)
User avatar
Suzanne
Book General
Posts: 2517
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2009 10:51 pm
Location: New Jersey

THE FALLS
Joyce Carol Oates

Part I
Honeymoon
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

Jeff has my disks at his computer - so, I'm just reading from Amazon's 'preview' of the honeymoon chapter ...

(There are a lot of pictures of Niagara Falls on that link I gave, btw. It will get you in the mood for this book - and you'll see what a waterfall nut I am - ha ha!)

Goat Island ... yes, it would be the most treacherous point. And it truly is beautiful and enthralling. Often, when I stand there on the upper avenue (I think it's called 'Fallsview', not sure), I look at that area, the rapids, just before the big 'drop' and wonder what it would be like to stand out on that island. Or, the little one where the birds perch.

Oates describes this scene very well here.

A good account of this area is given in the movie with Marilyn Monroe. I think that's called 'The Falls' too.

There are a lot of books and movies about Niagara - the history is fascinating.

In this first chapter where the gatekeeper is alarmed by this man's behaviour, I can really get the feel of it all. I can well imagine the gatekeeper's feelings on this. It must be hard to carry images of suicides in his mind, of which he has seen several.

The chaos of a nightmare.


OMG! I'd quit my job as gatekeeper after the first suicide - I'd be that upset.

... the strange metallic taste of the air of the industrial city sprawling east and north of The Falls ...


Well, at present, you wouldn't get that 'industrial city' feeling. Niagara Falls has been inundated with hotels and/or casinos ... the town always did have a 'commercial' feeling to it. Everywhere you turn there's an opportunity to spend your money.

Click here for more 'Amazon preview'.

http://www.amazon.com/Falls-Novel-Joyce ... 0060722282

I'll return when I'm ready to listen to the book. Soon.

:-)
lindad_amato
Intelligent
Posts: 557
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2010 1:13 pm
Location: Connecticut

@WildCityWoman....the movie with Marilyn Monroe is awesome. I've watched it a dozen times. I think it is one of her best performances. It does seem to capture on film the feeling that Oates was describing. I'm looking forward to reading the book with you.
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

It's a terrific movie, lindad ... when you get into collecting photos of waterfalls, you realize how many movies have them.

Ian Rankin, btw, has a book called The Falls. It might be interesting to do that book after we're finished with this one.

There are so many books themed around waterfalls.

I go online to search them out in other countries. I've done the whole of Japan, and India. People in India love them - you can see a lot of videos on you tube and often you see a bunch of guys having a great time splashing around at the foot of them.
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

I've got one book to finish - it's an audio version of The Dead Tossed Waves. It's the sequel to The Forest of Hands and Teeth. Ridiculous and slanted toward teens, but I love it.

I'll start listening to The Falls when I'm finished that. Probably tomorrow night.
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

Looks like I lied - started earlier tonight.

A SPOILER - don't be reading this if you don't want to know what happens in this chapter beforehand ...

..................

........................

...............................

....................................

........................................
So it turns out the groom is the fellow who jumped over the falls. Didn't like his wedding night much. And, from what we see in this chapter, which deals mainly with his new bride's thoughts, she didn't like it either.
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

I finished the second disk last night. It's really good ... both the bride and the groom are nutbars - ha ha!

Oates makes it sound amusing, in some ways, but when you really think about the situation, it's kinda depressing.
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

Image
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

I'm wondering if the book will include anything about that old skiff that's out there on the rocks. It's been there forever.
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

Image
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

I'm wondering about Dirk Burnaby ... I've never heard of this guy. He was a daredevil - a tightrope walker who performed over the falls.

I notice there is a skydiving centre at the falls - it is called Skydive Burnaby ...

http://www.skydiveburnaby.com/learn-to- ... skydiving/

I'm wondering if that was named for Burnaby.

The Hill family is also famous - for going over the falls in a barrel - I don't know if any of them did the tightrope.
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

Chapter 5 on more or less places the activity on the American side. I see now, it had to be the US side where he jumped in.

I cannot find anything specific on 'The Rainbow Grand'. I suppose this fictional hotel was supposed to be The Grand Hotel - probably on the 'Rainbow Room'.
WildCityWoman
Genius
Posts: 759
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:09 am

It's funny how Dirk brought wildflowers when he visited Oriah to announce his love for her.

I remember taking wildflowers to my mother once - when I was an adult. Not as a child's offering. I was walking toward her nursing home when I saw the wildflowers in the scrub by the sidewalk on Gerrard Street and picked some.

She thought it was silly.

I wonder what people have against wildflowers - guess that's what they think of as weeds.

In my opinion, weeds are plants growing where you don't want them growing.
lindad_amato
Intelligent
Posts: 557
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2010 1:13 pm
Location: Connecticut

WildCityWoman wrote:I'm wondering if the book will include anything about that old skiff that's out there on the rocks. It's been there forever.


Wasn't that shone in the Marilyn Monaroe movie?
User avatar
Suzanne
Book General
Posts: 2517
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2009 10:51 pm
Location: New Jersey

Wow, 10 pages in, and the husband has gone over the edge! Can't wait to find out why! :mrgreen:
Post Reply