Friday, April 17, 2009

Three Dog Night

  1. Is Martin's hostility to introduced plant species justified?
  2. Is Martin more sinned against than sinning? Is he a likeable narrator?
  3. Does Marin unconsciously collaborate with Felix's seduction of Lucy?
  4. Are Felix's actions in any way defensible?
  5. What motivates Lucy? Is it credible that she and Felix become lovers?
  6. How far do you think the characters' actions are influenced by their bodies? How much does the body determine behaviour and personality?
  7. What do you make of Goldsworthy's portrayal of the Warlpiri?
  8. Is Felix's death heroic?
  9. Does Martin murder Felix? If so, does he deserve imprisonment?

Friday, April 10, 2009

The Verge Practice

Discussion Questions

  1. How would you characterise the relationship between Brock and Kolla?
  2. Maitland introduces many more or less peripheral characters into the novel, but who nevertheless, play a considerable role. Analyse the contribution of one or more of the following characters: Suzanne Brock, George Todd, Madelaine Verge, Paul Oakley
  3. Maitland's plotting talents have been noted. As one example, see if you can find the clues to the evential revelation of the way in which Charles Verge has changed his appearance. (A starting point might be p53)
  4. Do you find the eventual revelation of Luz Diaz's true identity credible? Is there anything prior to the last chapter which offers the readers a clue? For instance, consider Kathy's thoughts of p72 about the similarity of the ways in which Charles Verge and Leon Desai have been brought up (by dominent mothers)
  5. Would this novel havelost anything if al the episodes relating to the Crime Strategy Working Party had been deleted? Trawl through them and see for yourself.
  6. Why does Kathy suddenly decide to go to Barcelona? 'This time, right or wrong, she would set the agenda.' (p267)
  7. What is the significance of the book, The Complete Works of Luis Domench i Montaner?
  8. Maitland wrote in the interview quoted earlier that he believes 'crime fiction often leads sthe way in dealing with issues of comtemporary life. The investigation allows the detectives to open door and probe any life, and for this reason I think the crime novel is a particularly good vehicle to explore current ideas and relationships.' How far do you think this is true of this novel in particular and of the genre in general?