Marlee Pinsker's Reviews > Among Others

Among Others by Jo Walton
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May 01, 2011

really liked it

Ever so often a book comes along that treats magic as something real in the world. I read this book as a book in which the magic is real. I accepted that Mori sees fairies and deals with them in her life. Many people have reviewed this book as one in which magic is used as a metaphor for psychological states, but I did not do that. It makes too many of the very concrete descriptions fall right away. Therefore, I wanted to know what the mother did that was so witch like. As it happens, that is the same question that the other reviewers mentioned as vital to a reading of the book in which elves do not really exist. What did the mother DO?

There is no answer to this question. She's just a bad one, perhaps a Lilith character with no ties to any children.

The book grabbed my attention and held it. Mori seemed active and engaged to me, and I was pleased that in the end she was helped by acupuncture. I wanted to throttle the doctor who put her in traction to so little good effect. Her love of the interlibrary loan is a lovely thing. The description of an adolescent sensibility that longs for a "karass" to belong to is touching, and the constant awareness of her disability is exactly what one feels when a part of the body just won't work right.

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Comments (showing 1-7 of 7) (7 new)

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Sarah This was definitely a pro-acupuncture book. I'm fascinated by the blurred line between fantasy and autobiography. Jo Walton put the poem she wrote for the contest up on her website.


Marlee Pinsker I'll go look up the poem. I'd like to know how this story was autobiographical. (Perhaps this would nurture a belief in fairies...?)


Sarah I think we're going to discuss it soon in the Alternative World group as well.


Marlee Pinsker That's good, because I'm still five in line at the library for the book they're discussing now. I'll read it after everyone has gone on to another book.


Lisa Vegan Marlee wrote: "That's good, because I'm still five in line at the library for the book they're discussing now. I'll read it after everyone has gone on to another book."

We love reactivated discussions so it's fine to contribute "belated" comments.


Marlee Pinsker Thanks, Lisa, I didn't know that!


Lisa Vegan Marlee wrote: "Thanks, Lisa, I didn't know that!"

Oh definitely. Feel free to look back through old discussions and chime in on any of them. Chances are, at least a couple members will post replies to anything you post.


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