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Archives > BotM 2016 - [August] The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaiman - Part 2 (Spoilers)

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message 1: by Zaz (new) - rated it 5 stars

Zaz | 2978 comments Part 2 Questions

Section of book: 26-50% (around 1:55-3:50 for the audio)

Notes:
- Each member is asked to end with a question for the next member.
- If the person above you forgets to pose a question then just pick a different one from above (make sure you indicate which one you're answering!)
- If some other question from above moves you then feel free to answer as many as you want. It is a discussion after all! ;)


1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?


5. Answer the question posed by the person above you!


message 2: by Zaz (new) - rated it 5 stars

Zaz | 2978 comments 1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?
I’d pick a famous woman, so it’d be difficult to choose. Agatha Christie could be a good choice, plenty of talent and imagination on how to murder people (yes, I’d be a creepy ghoul).

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?
I was surprised at first by the idea because I thought unconsecrated ground was randomly far from graveyards and not in graveyards. It was silly that the ghosts put lines between good and bad people depending on where they were buried as obviously the rule isn’t used since a long time and bad people aren’t always judged by law before dying. I liked how Bod crossed the border and then decided to cross another forbidden border. It showed that some rules were important while others were silly. I also liked that he made a friend like this.

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?
You-know-who (yup, I’m sure he’s around there since a long time and mistook Bod and Harry).

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?
I don’t remember what the reasons were, so… a money stuff, like inheritance maybe?

My question: If you had to haunt a place, which one would you choose?


Marina H | 1314 comments I'm not finding it easy answering these questions. It's been years since I participated in a real book discussion and this genre is way out of my comfort zone, but here goes:

1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?
I'm thinking I would pick a name after a strong historical female, and there's been a couple of bad-ass queens in England, so probably one of them.

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?
Since this is a childrens book I'm wondering if Gaiman uses this separation to illustrate that people can be quick on judging other people and that you can't judge a book by it's cover.
I liked that Bod went over there even though he was told not to. He was told to stay away from the ghosts over there, but ended up with a new friend.

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?
Honestly I have no idea. It seems to be protecting something from people, but Bod is allowed to take the brooch. Maybe it has something to do with greed or wanting to steal from the grave.

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?
That's what I would like to find out. And also who or what Jack is.


5. If you had to haunt a place, which one would you choose?
Hmm, maybe the Edinburgh Vaults. I could help the man with the boot scare the turists.

My question: Why do you think the author let's Bod grow up among creatures we normally see as bad or evil?


Anna | 975 comments 1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?
To be a ghoul I would have to eat somebody, and that's a no go for me ;)

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?
I think that it is/was barbaric and uncharitable to separate burial grounds this way. I found it gratifying that Bod made a friend from that part of the cemetery.

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?
An ancient Druid maybe?

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?
No idea.


5. Why do you think the author lets Bod grow up among creatures we normally see as bad or evil?
Because they aren’t bad or evil, it is just a prejudice we have to overcome. In fact they leapt to his defense when Bod was in trouble.

My question (which is not really a question): Quote something from this part of the book that caught your attention.


message 5: by J (new) - rated it 5 stars

J Austill | 661 comments 1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?

Phil Lynott.

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?

I think it is used perfectly in the story as it sets up an in group and an out group. Then it shows us that not everyone in the out group is good and not everyone in the out group is bad.

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?

Silas. I don't really have a lot of reason or even belief in this assertion, but I think he's one of the few characters that we have seen, up to this point, which could be.

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?

I think it is about money or inheritance. By eliminating an entire family he would shift the inheritance to someone else (his employer, presumably.)

5. If you had to haunt a place, which one would you choose?

A library. Anywhere else would get real boring, real quick.

6. Quote something from this part of the book that caught your attention.

Gotta be honest, this was a hard question. I specifically remember seeing a good quote in this section and not being able to highlight it, since I chose to not read this on the Kindle, but got a physical Library copy (and was too lazy to fetch a paper and pen). Then I come to your question and wish I had it.

But I went back and found this one:

"In the twilight of the graveyard there was a silent implosion, a flutter of velvet darkness, and Silas was gone."

This was the exact point in the book where I felt that I knew what Silas was. Previous scenes gave hint and later ones strengthened my resolve, but this one was integral to my decision.


Rachel A. (abyssallibrarian) | 2816 comments 1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?
No idea. I'm not creative like that when it comes to coming up with nicknames/screennames for myself. In the book, I think it said that ghouls are named for the last thing they ate...so in that case, I'd be Chocolate Chip Muffin, which hardly seems very ghoul-like.

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?
I think the separation was used to show how even in a society that is already "outcasts" there is still discrimination against others. The ghosts don't like others from the unconsecrated ground because of their reputation as criminals, witches and suicides and stereotype them as a result. I liked that Bod ignored this and ended up making a friend there, thus proving that not everyone in a group can or should be viewed the same way.

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?
I'm still a little confused about the whole Sleer thing in general. I'll chalk that up to trying to listen to the audiobook, which is not usually how I read. I get that they are guarding something and that Bod took the brooch from them, but beyond that, I really don't understand what's going on. I would guess that Silas might be the master, just because he seems to be quite important but very mysterious.

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?
I have no idea. Inheritance of some kind would make sense since he's trying to get rid of every family member, but there haven't really been any clues about his motive either.

5. Why do you think the author lets Bod grow up among creatures we normally see as bad or evil?
I didn't notice a question in the post directly above mine. The previous person asked for a quote that caught my attention, but it's hard for me to remember specific quotes from the audio. Instead, I'll go with the last question that was asked.

I think he let Bod grow up among creatures we see as bad or evil to show that things that are different are not necessarily scary or bad. We tend to assume that ghosts are evil/harmful, but in this case they treat Bod very well and take good care of him.

New question: Why was it so important to Bod to make a headstone for Liza?


message 7: by Beth (last edited Aug 11, 2016 09:58AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth | 134 comments 1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?
I like the idea of having a "the" in my name, like "the famous writer Victor Hugo". Maybe "the sharpshooter Annie Oakley" or "the frontierswoman Calamity Jane".

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?
I agree with J. It establishes the in crowd and the outcasts. And, as in life, those divisions aren't necessarily based on who is good and bad.

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?
I don't know, maybe an ancient Celtic priest? Although, I do wonder if it could be Silas. The fact that the master is able to leave the grave means that he isn't your average dead person.

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?
I got the impression Jack was hired to murder them. As to why someone wanted them dead, an inheritance of money, or perhaps a title, seems possible.


5a. Why was it so important to Bod to make a headstone for Liza?
I think because she is his friend and not having a headstone makes her unhappy. Of course, she is a witch, maybe that is part of what makes her so compelling to him.

5b. If you had to haunt a place, which one would you choose?
I think I would like to haunt a university (or Hogwarts, lol). Provided I had the run of the place, there would be a library, classes to sit in on, people doing scientific research, and new students each term to keep me abreast of what's going on in the world.

New question: What will Silas do with the man Jack's calling card?


message 8: by Zaz (new) - rated it 5 stars

Zaz | 2978 comments Beth, what's your question for the next member? :)


Beth | 134 comments Zaz wrote: "Beth, what's your question for the next member? :)"
I just realized I forgot, lol. Editing now :)


Aglaea | 371 comments 1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?
Like Anna I'm not too big on the idea of eating another person ;) But if I were made it against my will, I'd pick something strong womanish. I just hate the idea because to me there seems to be quite a bit of egocentricity in even ending up in that place.

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?
Gaiman grabs the chance to show how it is ridiculous to separate people. I'm thinking of EU borders and migrants, some religions being better than others (I'm even worse with no religion at all), discrimination based on sex/gender and race etc. I'm happy he writes with a conscience, as children form the basis of theirs in early years.

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?
Something bad. Silas as suggested above doesn't seem bad like that.

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?
No idea at this point but it must be something darker than random murder. (I've just finished the story so I do know!)

5. If you had to haunt a place, which one would you choose?
The presidential palace to remind the leader of the country never to get too big a head.

6. What will Silas do with the man Jack's calling card?
I think he pocketed it for a good reason. Silas seems like the quiet but efficient type throughout the book. Loyal as well.

Q: What did you think of Miss Lupescu incl. her name (gave you any hints?) at first versus later?


°~Amy~° (amybooksit) | 3278 comments 1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?

My Answer: Sgt. Pepper

Step-son's Answer: The Archangel

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?

My answer: It seems a bit dark for a children's book.

Step- son: Thinks it needed to be used to bring Lisa Hempstock into the story properly.

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?

I thought the man speaking to Jack in the interlude spoke in a manner similar to the Sleer. My step-son thinks Jack or Silas may be the Master.

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?

I don't think he knows, he was doing what he was paid or told to do. My step-son says he did it because Bod's parents are connected to supernatural beings or powers.

5. What did you think of Miss Lupescu incl. her name (gave you any hints?) at first versus later?

We both thought at first she was a horrible cook and kind of mean but at the end she was a savior. We did not guess that she was the dog in the graveyard.

Q. Do you think Bod's feelings were hurt that no one would discuss the dance with him because he was living?


Pamela | 1113 comments 1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?
I'm another vegetarian here and I don't think I would want to be a ghoul, they sound ick. However, I would pick someone with a title!

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?
The basic fact that the division is a traditional part of graveyards and I know Gaiman is a big fan of them (a friend ended up standing next to him while they were both looking at a cemetery and she said although he was talking to his companions, she still eavesdropped and it was fascinating what he knew). But it is also a way to expand Bod's world as he grows up. He doesn't leave the graveyard, so you need to leave somewhere for him to expand to as he grows yet stays inside.

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?
I find everyone's Silas idea interesting. I was kinda thinking there is no master, the Sleer is guarding something long gone but doesn't know it

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?
I thought inheritance or something but now that there is a supernatural element to Jack, I wonder if it is more. I was not pleased to see him back!


5. Do you think Bod's feelings were hurt that no one would discuss the dance with him because he was living?
Yes, but I also think that they have been remarkedly open and welcoming to him and there are some things you can't know until you're ready. Silas also isn't included.

What was Silas doing in San Francisco- is it related to Bod?


Molly (mollyrotondo) | 57 comments 1. If you were a ghoul, what would be your name?

It does seem that ghouls get their names from the people they eat. I do not want to eat anyone so I won't pick a name :)

2. The ghosts don’t like the ghosts from the unconsecrated ground (criminals, suicides, witches, etc). What’s your opinion about this separation and the way it’s used in the story?

The ghosts are definitely judging those that reside in the unconsecrated ground section of the graveyard. This section teaches the lesson that we can't judge people before getting to know them. Lisa turned out to be a very nice witch, and helps Bod escape from the pawn shop.

3. Who/what do you think is the master of the Sleer?

I think it is very interesting that readers believe the master is Silas. We do not know a lot about him so it is possible. But the man Jack could also be the master.

4. Why do you think Jack murdered the family?

After hearing from the two men in the pawn shop, I think the man Jack was really after Bod, but needed to kill the whole family to keep everyone quiet. I think Bod has more abilities that could threaten the master of the Sleer.


5. What was Silas doing in San Francisco- is it related to Bod?

I do not think it was related Bod. I think Silas has other "work" to do other than taking care of Bod.

My question: How did the pawnshop owner meet the man Jack?


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