Tea and Tales with Cate and Allison discussion

The Snow Child
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Buddy Reads > Buddy Read: The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey

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Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
@pagesandcup and I discussed that we'd like to do a buddy read for THE SNOW CHILD during the month of December. If you'd like to join us, please do! We'll discuss under this thread.


Shelby Azure | 3 comments Aw I just read that book about a week and a half ago! But I will chip in on some of the discussions!! It was definitely a wonderful read and now one of my favourite books.


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
Shelby, we'd love to hear your thoughts! So excited to discuss this book.


message 4: by Allie (new) - added it

Allie  | 131 comments Mod
Ohhhh, this one's been on my TBR for forever. Maybe a buddy read is just what I need to finally get to it!


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
Allison, you must join us! It has been on my list for quite some time now too. And this was definitely the nudge I needed to start it.


Pages & Cup | 41 comments Hey Catie! I'm still finishing up Lair of Dreams, but hope to start The Snow Child right after. Are you already done reading it?


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
I haven't. I'm finishing up a book myself and then planning on starting it. So, it sounds like we are on the same page. :)


message 8: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments Can I just say how much I am loving the Snow child? like I want to look up the author and if he's anywhere under 70 years old marry him. Even if he's already married. Hell, he doesn't even have to be under 70.


message 9: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments OMG I just looked up the author and discovered it's a she not a he! I know an Irish guy with the name spelt like that and assumed the author was male. That is too funny! Well I'd marry her anyways.


message 10: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments That was supposed to say it's a he not a she


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
LOL! Lisa your comment cracked me up. Although, my dear the author is a woman in this case... ;)

I like the idea of a Sean Connery look alike. I'd take him!


Pages & Cup | 41 comments LOL!!!!!!!!!


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
If it's any consolation, I thought the author was a man too! Always thought Eowyn was a boy name. Lisa, you just made my night. :D


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Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments And that makes my night! :)


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Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments Oh my goodness this is so good! I can't put it down!


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
I feel the same way! Did either of you ever read Uprooted by Naomi Novik? It was my top read for this year. The writing style and retelling of a fairytale are very similar. And the imagery!


message 17: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments Unfortunately my library doesn't carry it on audio. Boo. Maybe I will get it on audible next month!


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
I truly did love it, afterwards I kept thinking to myself, "I wish I could write like this..." Novik has some mad writing skills. :)


message 19: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments I think I would read anything you recommended, so I will definitely go for it!


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
LOL! That puts A LOT of pressure on me, but I'm absolutely flattered you'd say this!


Pages & Cup | 41 comments Haven't read Uprooted yet, but I do own a copy.


message 22: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments I just finished. So beautiful!


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
I finished last night and can't stop thinking about the book. I really do love magical realism.

You both have to read Uprooted, I think you'd loved it.


Pages & Cup | 41 comments Finishing the Poirot mystery. I got sucked in to the story. :)


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
I loved Hercule Poirot's Christmas! I think it was such an interesting story, then again I'm kind of a big fan of Christie. You'll have to watch the adaptation starring. David Suchet. I believe they have them on Netflix or Amazon Prime.


Pages & Cup | 41 comments I will have to look for it. I loved the book! The ending caught me off-guard, but made sense.


message 27: by Jill (last edited Dec 19, 2015 03:40PM) (new)

Jill (jillglove) I loved the book and had no idea it was a movie. Off to Netflix now!


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
It caught me off guard too, which I loved.


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
Jill, it is really great! And David Suchet is a perfect Poirot.


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
Jill and Minerva,

I checked Netflix and they do have the Christmas episode. It is Season 6 Episode 1. I hope you enjoy it! :)


message 31: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments Oh goody! I know what I'm watching tonight!


message 32: by Jill (new)

Jill (jillglove) Found it. I just needed to search under "Agatha Christie" .


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
Lisa and Jill, you'll have to let me know what you think. I really love both the Poirot and Miss Marple series the BBC did.


message 34: by Jill (new)

Jill (jillglove) It was okay.....kind of a quick telling of the book. Maybe because I already knew the ending, it didn't really "hit" me. Entertaining video though.


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
They left out a bunch, but I've always loved comparing the film adaptations to the books. See the creative license they take or changes they make to fit the time frame. I agree about knowing the ending. Loved the surprise ending in the book. Great Christie twist!


message 36: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments I actually haven't gotten around to watching it yet, but I will let you know when I do!


message 37: by Jill (new)

Jill (jillglove) They did leave out quite a bit. Before I knew it the mystery was solved......still a good episode.


Pages & Cup | 41 comments Finished The Snow Child. So stunning! The ending left me sad, yet hopeful. I'm ready to discuss it whenever you all are. Thanks for your patience. :)


message 39: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments How does it end again? I've already forgotten! What is wrong with me?!


Pages & Cup | 41 comments The ending is a mystery. There's closure, and yet there isn't. ;)


Catie (catiebutler) | 225 comments Mod
I have so many thoughts and comments about this book and thought these questions would be great to get the discussion going. I'm so glad I finally picked up this book!

1. When Mabel first arrives in Alaska, it seems a bleak and lonely place to her. Does her sense of the land change over time? If so, how?

2. Why are Jack and Mabel emotionally estranged from each other in the beginning of the novel, and how are they able to overcome that?

3. How do Esther Benson and Mabel differ in temperament, and how does their friendship change Mabel?

4. The first time Garrett sees Faina in person is when he spies her killing a wild swan. What is the significance of this scene?

5. In what ways does Faina represent the Alaska wilderness?

6. Jack and Mabel's only child is stillborn. How does this affect Mabel's relationship with Faina?

7. When Jack is injured, Esther and Garret move to their farm to help them. How does this alter Jack and Mabel's relationship?

8. Much of Jack and Mabel's sorrow comes from not having a family of their own, and yet they leave their extended family behind to move to Alaska. By the end of the novel, has their sense of family changed? Who would they consider a part of their family?

9. Death comes in many forms in The Snow Child, including Mabel giving birth to a stillborn infant, Jack shooting a moose, Faina slaying a swan, the fox killing a wild bird, Jack and Mabel slaughtering their chickens, and Garrett shooting the fox. Why is this one of the themes of the book and what is the author trying to say about death?

10. What do you believe happened to Faina in the end? Who was she?


Pages & Cup | 41 comments Really great questions, Cate! I have one more: Why did the author not put any of the dialog between Faina and others in quotes? I kept wondering if the relationship really was all in their heads. Or wondering if Mabel was dreaming everything, including Jack, Esther and Garret's interaction. Anyway ... What are your thoughts?

I did love how Mabel and Jack's marriage seemed to grow stronger once they saw they could create life again. They created Faina, Mabel created art through her sketches, and they both had a hand in cultivating their farm and seeing crops grow.


message 43: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Brocklebank | 57 comments Sorry it's taken me so long to respond. Still recuperating from the holidays! That's interesting that Faina's dialogue was not in quotation. I missed that with the audio. I love your suggestion, @pagesandcup that it may indicate the possibility that it was, after all, in Mabel's imagination. I'd love to know what you all think about who Faina was and what happened to her. I think that there was something otherworldly about her, and yet she was clearly a human being. I don't think we are supposed to know, which is what makes the story so compelling. In a way, she is no more fantastical than the landscape, and creatures around her, as the novel depicts them. For example, to Mabel at first, and to her relatives back east, the animals that she draws are strange and alien beings. I think she also represents the power of deep, sustained desire to manifest the object of longing.
And I agree with @pagesandcup about how creation seems to beget creation. And there's the notion of cultivation, too. Mabel and Jack try to cultivate and tame the wild landscape through their farming. Mabel tries to understand and capture the creatures through her art, which we can see as a type of cultivation. And, of course, those around her, and ultimately to some extent she herself, try to cultivate Faina, with ambiguous results.
The episode in which Faina kills the swan intrigued me. Why a swan? It reminded me of the myth of Leda and the Swan, in which Zeus takes on the form of a swan and ravishes a fair maiden. Maybe a reversal of the myth?
A few thought for now. The novel is still haunting me so I may have more later!


Amanda | 5 comments Ok, so December did not go as I had planned. I envisioned this cozy Christmas break snuggled up reading but unfortunately two cooped up kids in the house did not make that possible for me. I need to finfish up my last three challenge reads for 2015 and then I am going to read this and Winter Garden. BTW, I am ecstatic that school starts back up in the morning. Win for mommy!!


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