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Gone with the Wind
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Gone With the Wind > Gone With the Wind: In Progress (No Spoilers)

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Adelaide Blair | 1043 comments Mod
This topic is for those who wish to discuss the book in progress. No spoilers please.


Cheryl | 920 comments I just got it from my library. What a huge book! I'll start it tonight or tomorrow.


Cheryl | 920 comments I just finished the first chapter. From descriptions and names of places in the story, I think it's set in the current Jonesboro, Ga area. If you look on Google Maps, you can see a Tara Road in that town. No plantations are there, but there is a Gone With the Wind museum.


Sarah (sarahmott) | 362 comments Cool - I wonder if Tara is entirely fictional or based on a real place?


Cheryl | 920 comments I really liked chapter 3. It tells the background story of Scarlett's parents, how they met, how Tara came to be.


Cheryl | 920 comments I found the first 100 pages hard to get through. The writing was uneven, like the author was trying to find her style. The dialect of the slaves - not to mention their frequent use of the "n word" - was hard to read.

After Scarlett gets to the barbeque, I thought the book greatly improved. I was going to abandon it, but now I'll continue reading. I think the book could've used a better editor, though.


Sarah (sarahmott) | 362 comments I’m about a quarter of the way through, now, and feeling pretty guilty about how much I am liking the story. Maybe it’s because you guys forewarned me of the more deplorable aspects of the novel.

Anyway, I like how despicable Scarlett is. She’s a rather refreshing protagonist. I’m soooooo tired of reading about the reluctant hero whose experienced something devastating in their distant past. I also think the author did a great job describing teenage heartbreak. It brought back a lot of memories from twenty years ago that make me giggle now.


message 8: by Cheryl (last edited Jan 08, 2018 05:20AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Cheryl | 920 comments I have to remind myself, at least in the early section I'm reading, that Scarlett is still a teen. How she goes on about Ashley makes more sense, then.

My favorite character so far is Rhett. He's pretty refreshing in that he speaks his mind without sugarcoating things, and sees the folly in going to war that the other "gentlemen" do not.

I'm not a fan of Scarlett, but I do see that the author is doing a good job in writing her character. I could never get through Jane Austen's Emma, because I just could not spend that much time with tbe main character. (I did see the film, though. 2 hours or less is my time limit with Miss Emma.) I kind of feel that way about Scarlett. It's the other characters that are getting me through the book.


Sarah (sarahmott) | 362 comments Have you seen Clueless? It’s actually a pretty entertaining remake of Emma - written by the young actress herself. Emma is much more believable character as an air headed Beverly Hills teenager.


Cheryl | 920 comments Sarah wrote: "Have you seen Clueless? It’s actually a pretty entertaining remake of Emma - written by the young actress herself. Emma is much more believable character as an air headed Beverly Hills teenager."

Oh yeah, I liked that movie. That version of Emma was pretty good.


message 11: by Cheryl (last edited Jan 08, 2018 04:05PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Cheryl | 920 comments I enjoyed chapter 9, with Scarlett at the charity bazaar to raise money for the war. That Rhett, though. Wow! What chemistry between the two of them.

I think Clark Gable was the perfect choice for Rhett in the movie. He was quite the sexy "bad boy" of 1930s Hollywood, and that image fit so well with this character.


Sarah (sarahmott) | 362 comments Yeah - that character is completely hot, and I second your comment about Mr. Gable.

I just read up to the burning of Atlanta. Of all the main characters we’ve read, I think Scarlet would be most likely to survive a zombie apocalypse.


Cheryl | 920 comments Sarah wrote: "Of all the main characters we’ve read, I think Scarlet would be most likely to survive a zombie apocalypse ."

Hah! In hoop skirts, of course.


Cheryl | 920 comments I'm in part 3 now, chapter 18. I know the war is coming to Atlanta and I don't really want to go through it with them. I need a break! I need something light right now. Maybe I'll put the book down for a day or two and go back to it.

Those gentlemen of the Confederacy make me so mad. They put their women and children through this hell for nothing - no, for their egos. Ugh!!!


Adelaide Blair | 1043 comments Mod
I've started and am in far enough to know I'm hooked again. The book is well written and Scarlett is fun because she is so awful.

I'm also seeing stuff I hate, like when the slaves "deserved" to be punished. WTF. They are all just lucky Mammy doesn't murder all the white people in their sleep.

I haven't gotten very far because I am halfway through another book that I started before this came from the library. (Military sci fi by Tanya Huff.) I should probably finish that so I can have some focus.


message 16: by Cheryl (last edited Jan 10, 2018 07:13AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Cheryl | 920 comments Adelaide wrote: "They are all just lucky Mammy doesn't murder all the white people in their sleep."

Ha! Mammy sure has strong opinions about everyone and how they should act. I was a bit shocked by her using the "n" word for the slaves and "po' white trash" for the poorer, less sophisticated whites. (I guess the plantation owner whites were class bigots, too, since they put down the poorer whites alot. Who did they think they were?)

I think the family had a standard to uphold, and Mammy was there to maintain it. She really was the one in charge. The same goes for Uncle Peter at Aunt Pittypat's Atlanta house.


Sarah (sarahmott) | 362 comments True. I’m at the point where Scarlett is a business woman. The author is trying to show in a scene how the Yankees can be even more racist...That it’s not enough to give someone equal rights if you don’t also afford them the respect they deserve. I’d agree with that.

Holy Cow - I am unable to put this book down. What am I going to read after this and IT? I’ll have to go for some trashy historical fiction as a rebound. Then I think I’ll dive into the Practical Magic books. Been meaning to get to those...


Sarah (sarahmott) | 362 comments True. I’m at the point where Scarlett is a business woman. The author is trying to show in a scene how the Yankees can be even more racist...That it’s not enough to give someone equal rights if you don’t also afford them the respect they deserve. I’d agree with that.

Holy Cow - I am unable to put this book down. What am I going to read after this and IT? I’ll have to go for some trashy historical fiction as a rebound. Then I think I’ll dive into the Practical Magic books. Been meaning to get to those...


Cheryl | 920 comments I live in an Atlanta suburb that's not that far from Jonesboro and the area where Tara is in the novel. Every time I drive to my town's main road, I have to drive past an old cemetary. On the end, next to the road, are old Civil War graves that always have little Confederate flags in front of the tombstones. I always feel very conflicted when I see them. On the one hand, I do not like what the Confederacy stood for at all. But on the other hand, I think what these soldiers had to go through in the war.

I've visited the Atlanta History Museum and seen many early photos there of battlegrounds and of Atlanta after the Yankees had gone through. Those photos reduced me to tears. No matter what side the soldiers - and civilians near battlefronts - were on, it was totally brutal.


Cheryl | 920 comments I'm at chpt. 26 now. I love Grandma Fontaine!

"Well isn't this generation soft and ladylike! Let me tell you, Miss, when I was a girl my father lost all his money and I wasn't above doing honest work with my hands and in the fields too, till Pa got enough money to buy some more darkies. I've hoed my row and I've picked my cotton and I can do it again if I have to. And it looks like I'll have to."


message 21: by Cheryl (last edited Jan 11, 2018 06:19PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Cheryl | 920 comments Chpt. 37: lots of talk about the hordes of "trashy free issue" ex-slaves of the field-hand class terrorizing the white women, supposedly encouraged by the Yankee soldiers. The Ku Klux Klan is talked of in a positive light. Yuck. I did not like that part in the movie, either.


Cheryl | 920 comments Sarah wrote: " The author is trying to show in a scene how the Yankees can be even more racist...That it’s not enough to give someone equal rights if you don’t also afford them the respect they deserve."

I just got to that part. So there is racism on both sides.


Adelaide Blair | 1043 comments Mod
One of the things this book does well is show the racism that both the North and South flourished on. It sucks that the book itself is racist. It's just a big old love letter to the confederacy.


Cheryl | 920 comments Adelaide wrote: " It sucks that the book itself is racist. It's just a big old love letter to the confederacy."

I think Scarlett's descriptions of how well her family treated their slaves were certainly biased. In the early section, it never showed her out among the field slaves, so how could she know how they were treated, especially by the overseer? (She does give the qualifier that field slaves were the lowest type of slave, so maybe they don't deserve fair treatment? ) And her mother was firing the overseer due to his lack of morals (sex with poor white trash women), so couldn't this lack of morals carry over into his handling of slaves? And her father whipped a slave once for not wiping down a horse - or is that all he'd admit to in front of the family? Scarlett only had her mother's example of treating their own house slaves to base her opinions on.

I had to laugh at the author's dig at Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin in chpt. 38. The Yankees were always asking about the use of bloodhounds to find runaway slaves, when Scarlett had only seen one bloodhound in all her life and it was a small mild dog. No slave ever wanted to run away from Tara. Yeah, that's why almost all left after the Yankees came through.


Cheryl | 920 comments To be fair, though, I equally disliked how the Northern government used the freed slaves as a political tool. Promising them forty acres and a mule from the plantation owners properties and dangling voting rights before them, only to later take it away, was disgusting.


Cheryl | 920 comments This book keeps going from a 4 star rating to a 2 star rating for me, because of passages like the one below:

Chpt. 44: "As for the negroes, their new importance went to their heads, and, realising that they had the Yankee army behind them, their outrages increased. No one was safe from them."


Adelaide Blair | 1043 comments Mod
Yeah, whenever anyone talks about how well slaves were treated they are missing the forest for the trees. It's usually not really true, and it doesn't matter. Just the act of owning someone is horrific and the repercussions of it last for generations. It poisons everyone, slaves and owners alike.


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