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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Waterfall Wednesdays Read-Along (Chapters 12-17)


Waterfall Wednesdays, a read-along of Waterfall by Lisa T. Bergren, is hosted by Tina at Tinasbookreviews, Joy & Serena at Edgy Inspirational Romance, Nic at Irresistible Reads, Jenny at Supernatural Snark, and Missie at The Unread Reader.

Hi all! Welcome back for this week's post. Feel free to join in the discussion by leaving your comments at the bottom. Enjoy!

Discussion Questions for Chapters 12-17

1. In Siena, on her way to the ball at Palazzo Pubblico, Gabi likened her experience to being on the red carpet at the Academy Awards, the goal being "to see and be seen." If you were a peasant, watching from the crowd, what would you be thinking as this procession passed by?

If I were a peasant watching from the crowd, I would probably only watch for a little while and lose interest very soon. I’ve never been one to fawn over celebrities or the rich, in this case, as I don’t think they’ve really done much to deserve my admiration and respect. I would surely wonder what it would be like to be born into such privilege and not have to toil daily to earn a meagre income and barely survive. I would admire the pretty dresses worn by the ladies and wish to be on the arm of such a fine gentleman like Marcello *wink* but I wouldn’t let myself ponder over it for too long and would soon move on to the concerns of daily life and my present reality.

2. Though quite nervous about dancing at the ball, Gabi discovers a strange feeling of connection to the time, the people, and the society through the unified beauty of the dance. Have you ever been in a position where you felt out of your element, but, in one, pinpointed moment, became a part of or connected to something bigger than your fear?

A roller-coaster ride? That’s the first thing that came to mind after reading the question, so I think that deserves a mention. But I think it’s the same for many people. When you try out a new and frightening experience, your unfamiliarity with that situation causes you to doubt your own ability to adapt and feel comfortable with it. I think that, with Gabi, it was also who she was with that made the difference and made her feel a part of things. You never know what you’re getting yourself into when you’re trying something new, but it could be an experience that brings out something lying dormant inside of you, something just waiting to be coaxed out of hiding and brought out into the open so that you realise that you always had it in you and all that was needed was a little push to bring it to the surface and let yourself shine. Hope that makes sense...

3. The kiss. Oh, the kiss. When Marcello finally kisses Gabi, he believes the experience to be proof that they are meant to be together. What did you think about his assumption? Were you surprised at Gabi's reaction to it? Have you ever experienced a kiss that seemed to be prophetic in a similar (or opposite!) way?

I thought it was a little too soon for him to jump to that conclusion, but then I realised that he knew what he was looking for when he kissed Gabi. He had a theory and he wanted to test it so that, judging by his own reaction and feelings about the kiss, he could tell whether it meant more to kiss Gabi than it did to kiss Lady Rossi. I was a little surprised that Gabi was able to think rationally and keep her wits about her after that kiss with Marcello, but I was glad that she had enough sense to realise that it was wrong kissing a guy who was betrothed to another (even if he seemed to have no such qualms) and although her protests ruined the moment, I couldn’t help but respect her for it.

4. Many go through their teen years with a subdued sense of immortality. Do you think Gabi has a sense of this teen feeling? And did you think Gabi's converse observation, "Sometimes death came hunting and there was no way to cut it off at the pass." was informed more by the experience of losing her father, her self-admitted closet hypochondria, or the forced maturation of being transported to a different time? How does this observation show Gabi's growth as a character?

I think Gabi has a sense of this feeling and this is most evident in her sometimes reckless sword-wielding and wall-climbing ways. I think her observation that death sometimes came hunting and you couldn’t cut it off at the pass had more to do with the loss of her father and the obvious dangers of the time she found herself in. I don’t think it actually had much to do with being a hypochondriac. Being transported back in time and dropped into the midst of such a treacherous and uncertain period in history has forced her to grow as a character in an effort to accept and adapt to her reality so that she could make it back to the twenty-first century alive.

5. In the span of a few moments, Gabi goes from sword-wielding teen beauty to man-killing warrior. Did you think her realization of the finality of death -- and her justification for its necessity -- was realistic? And, in her slippers, could you have done the same?

I was particularly impressed with how this aspect of the events was handled. I think that the full reality and finality of death doesn’t hit most of us until we see it happen before our eyes. I thought that the portrayal of her inner battle to convince herself that she wasn’t a cold-blooded killer but merely someone forced to kill in order to protect herself and the people she cared for was a very realistic one. If I were in her slippers, I doubt I’d have had the courage and bravery to do what needed to be done. I don’t think I would be strong enough to deal with the after-effects and psychological trauma of knowing that I’d taken a life, no matter how justified my actions were perceived as being at the time.


Hope that was interesting! Now it's time for you to you to tell me what you think. Until next week! :)

13 comments:

Jenny

Fantastic answers! I would have struggled with the death-as-necessary situation as well given that it's such a drastic departure from my current life. Gabi continually surprised me with how she reacted to everything in that time period and her maturity was enviable. I probably would have been an emotional mess and gotten myself carted off to some dungeon for the insane, babbling about cars and television and the internet:)

Lisa

I completely agree that anytime you are in a new situation you have a bit of fear and feel uncomfortable. You just have to go out there and try it. It may be completely insane but it could also be amazing...you'll never know unless you try! Great answer!

Julie

Very well thought out answers! I agree with your answer to #1! I'm not into the whole rich gawking and fawning thing either.

Tina

Loved your answers!! I think your right...no matter what the circumstance it would be hard to be involved in violence, death or war.....

Lesley @ My keeper shelf

I think I would be too poor and hungry to be fawning over rich well dressed ladies, it would probably be the last thing I would be thinking of!

Melissa @ Melissa's Eclectic Bookshelf

Love your answer for #3 and I agree completely that the inner battle (and Marcello's help) made her struggle with killing very realistic.

♥ Melissa @ Melissa's Eclectic Bookshelf

Missie

Blahahaha, Sarah! Yeah, it was a bit surprising that she was able to think clearly after that kiss with Marcello.

You know, I don't really follow celebrity new either. I think it is so overrated. My view on it is, they don't care what is going on in my life so why should I care what is going on in theirs? LOL

Great answers!

Jacinda (The Reading Housewives)

I don't fawn too much over celebrities now, but for some reason I feel like back then I might want too, idk...I'm crazy!

You explained the kiss and how Marcello felt the way he did perfectly! You made an awesome point that I couldn't make myself...YAY!

Lisa Tawn Bergren

For a confused adolescent, I'd say your answers are brilliant. Thanks for taking part in WW...I appreciate you!

BURIED IN BOOKS

I'd feel the same about watching the procession. I'd like to see the dresses and stuff, but then I might start to resent them so the natural reaction is to turn away so I don't have to see it anymore.

Great answers!

Heather

Nic @ Irresistible Reads

Fantastic answers! I don't think I would be able to keep my wits if Marcello kissed me. I admire that Gabi did too :)

IdentitySeeker

Thank you all for dropping by:) I'm glad you liked my responses and it feels good to know that you agree with me on certain points, especially the fawning over the rich thing (Julie, Missie and Lesley)- so glad Im not the only one! It often seems expected of me to show such people some level of deference.

Jenny and Tina- I also admired the way Gabi faced up to her fears and didn't cave in. Death, war and violence are a nasty business and I hope none of us ever has to experience anything like it.

Lisa T Bergren- Thank you:) That's a major compliment! I appreciate your appreciation:)

Sarah

IdentitySeeker

Melissa- I think that Gabi's reaction after killing for the first time was a little mild compared to the shock and trauma she will experience in the rest of the series. I'm glad you agree that Marcello's helping her through it made it more realistic:)

Melissa and Nic- Glad my interpretation of that kiss made sense. Yup, I'm still astonished at Gabi's presence of mind in that situation.

Heather- I would feel the same. I suppose a large part of my reason for turning away would be the jealousy.

Thanks for visiting:)

Sarah

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