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  • Chris 11:42 am on October 18, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: We Have Always Lived In The Castle   

    We Have Always Lived In The Castle CH. 1&2 Discussion 

    It’s time to get this party started!! And by party, I mean this super creepy book. Well Ms. Mary Katherine sounds pleasant, doesn’t she? She opens the book telling us that she wishes she would’ve been born a werewolf, she dislikes washing herself and that everyone in her family aside from her and her sister are dead. I’m guessing we’re not considering Uncle Julian family since it’s by marriage or is he going to be some kind of ghost or something? And then things justΒ  get more and more bizarre as we learn that the whole town dislikes her and her sister. Or is it mostly in her head? Or is it a combination of the two? We certainly see Mary Katherine’s own imagination get carried away as she imagines the deaths of those that give her grief.

    But it’s in the second chapter that the meat of the story seems to be revealed. A murder…a poisoning with arsenic. Is it just me or did it sound like Constance and Uncle Julian were putting on a show almost for Helen Clarke and Mrs. Wright? I mean, this is a messed up family. That’s my first impression. And who is Helen? I mean yes, we know she’s one of the few townspeople that are “good enough” to come and visit the girls, but why? What’s her interest in them? And why bring Mrs. Wright?

    Wow…there’s just so much to talk about here. I was hooked by this book right from the beginning!! I’m so glad to be reading this one!! And I really can’t wait to see where it goes. So here are a few questions to discuss: What were your thoughts going into this novel? Is it anything like what you expected? Do you think that Constance put the arsenic in the sugar as of right now? Any hunch on what’s up with the family? There’s just something really off about them. Why is Helen so interested in the girls? What about the title of the book? And most importantly…are you hooked?!

    Can’t wait to meet everyone here next week!! Same time, same place πŸ˜‰

    • jennygirl 12:07 pm on October 18, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I so wish I could read this one with you guys! Poor planning on my part. Oh well, hopefully I can make the next read-a-long. Have fun πŸ™‚

    • vivienne 12:38 pm on October 18, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I am beginning to think it is a cover up by Constance and Uncle Julian. I am wondering if the crime was actually committed by Mary instead, but as she was so young (12 at the time) they wanted to save her from juvenile prison. That is why the family put on such a show – well that is what I think anyway. It is a weirder book than I expected but I am really enjoying it. I think Helen is just a busybody always trying to make people better than they are and sorting everyone’s problems.

    • Devourer of Books 1:32 pm on October 19, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I’ll be back with real thoughts either tomorrow or Thursday, last week just got away from me a little.

    • jendevourerofbooks 8:45 am on October 20, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Okay, I read this last night, and what the heck is going on?!? I think that the most interesting part was actually right after Helen and Lucille left, when Uncle Julian was asking whether or not the events he had just described had really happened. Not that the entire rest of it wasn’t WTF worthy, but that was particularly so. I did also wonder why Helen would have brought someone with her when she had to have known what would happen. Did she secretly want Mrs. Wright to ask all of those questions and only protested because it was the ‘polite’ thing to do?

    • Frankie 11:14 am on October 20, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Well I’m right with u Jen. Mrs. Clarke is nosey and brought a friend to do the dirty work. But I’m confused about how old the girls r and how long ago this murder occurred, why turn a sad situation into a joke? why stay in a town where u r hated? why r u wearing ur mother’s shoes?

    • alitareads 12:16 am on October 23, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I agree with vivienne – I think that Mary slipped the arsenic into the sugar, and the other two are covering it up. I am eager to find out what it was about that day – I guess even that visit with Helen and Lucille – that caused Mary not to be able to return her library books for over 5 months.

      I didn’t really get into the book much in the first chapter, but chapter two definitely hooked me. Part way through chapter two I took a short break and read The Lottery. I hadn’t read since high school but never forgot it thanks to that twist at the end. Now I’m looking forward to finding out what kind of twists Jackson has in store in this book.

    • Patti Smith 10:04 am on October 25, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I’m a little behind but hopefully will be caught up by tonight…I am absolutely hooked though…and everytime Merricat gets that chill, I find myself getting one too. πŸ˜‰ I wasn’t sure what was going on until Chapter 2 and then I started thinking about possibilities. I think it is very possible that Merricat was the actual murderer and Constance just covered it up. Merricat is obviously phycologically “messed up”…the parts about her imagining others dead and pleading for help is what gave it away for me πŸ˜‰ Constance has obviously been traumatized as well somehow and I’m guessing it’s because of witnessing her family’s murder, being arrested (falsely, I think) for murdering her family and the way the villagers treat her and her family. Right now I think all of that is real; I don’t think they are imagining the meanness from others. I’m wondering if Uncle Julian has some brain damage from his poisoning? He also seems evil to me…the way he taunted the ladies. I don’t think Constance is in on anything right now; I think she’s just trying to be her prim and proper mother. Can’t wait to find out what’s happening next!

  • Chris 3:59 am on October 7, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: We Have Always Lived In The Castle   

    Welcome To We Have Always Lived In The Castle! 

    Hey everyone!! My name is Chris, and I’ve been asked to host the Classic Reads Book Club in the fourth quarter read this year! I can’t tell you how honored I was just to be asked and then how terrified I was. You see, I really have no idea what I’m doing over here, so please be gentle :p I promise to try my best though!

    A little introduction, I blog over at Stuff as Dreams are Made on and have been doing that on one platform or another for almost four years now. When I started blogging, I read almost exclusively fantasy, sci-fi and horror, but my reading tastes have broadened tremendously since I’ve been blogging!! But there is always that special place in my heart for the previously mentioned category. So when I was asked to host this book club, my thoughts wandered over that way. And they fell upon this book by Shirley Jackson that I have been wanting to read for years now! And it’s quite a short book, but from what I’ve heard, it packs quite the punch in it’s slim volume.

    I can’t wait to discover what lies between the covers with you all! I’m really quite excited about this πŸ™‚ Here’s the schedule that I’ve worked out for us:

    October 18th – 24th: Read and Discuss Chapters 1&2

    October 25th – 31st: Read and Discuss Chapters 3-5

    November 1st – 7th: Read and Discuss Chapters 6-8

    November 8th – 14th: Read and Discuss Chapters 9&10 and Wrap Up πŸ˜€

    I’ll put the posts up over here on either the night before discussion begins or first thing in the morning. Since I’m not a morning person at all, it’ll likely be the night before :p Hope everyone enjoys!! Happy spooky reading to you all!!

    • Heather 7:07 pm on October 7, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Oh Chris, you are going to be awesome! Don’t be nervous; we don’t bite! πŸ™‚

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