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Nesting Dolls Discussion (Winter Quarter - Week 4)

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message 1: by Matt (new)

Matt (mlabrake) | 95 comments Mod
Welcome to the week 4 online discussion of Nesting Dolls. Please feel free to respond to one, some, or all of the discussion questions listed here. In your post, label each response with the question number you are responding to. Please respond to others and engage in discussion!

1) Who, if anyone, deserves forgiveness/redemption within the novel? Why or why not?

2) Why do you think Caroline made the decision she did that impacted Theresa's life? What was her true reason for making that choice?

3) Was Bill a very weak or a very strong person?

4) Do you believe that any action in life is truly unforgivable?

5) What was Valentine's greatest struggle to overcome to get her where she finally ended up in life?


message 2: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Question 1: I think just about every character needed forgiveness or redemption and that makes this book very real. It was a reminder that as humans, we make choices and mistakes, and those actions may bring about undesirable and unforeseen results.


message 3: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Question 2: I was shocked at what Caroline did and I think her decision was to spare her own life. I understand that Caroline had a lot of stress and drama in her marriage and didn't need any more, but to send Theresa away like that was beyond cruel.

Caroline was big on appearances and Theresa was a blot on her track record as a mom. And that was very sad.


message 4: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Question 3:I see Bill as weak and the end of the story shows just how much he lost by his silence and not standing up to what is right.


message 5: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Question 4: I believe that everything can be forgiven but not everything can be forgotten. In this story, certain decisions led to horrible results and while the people involved can be forgiven, other lives were tragically ruined.


message 6: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Valentine needed to step away from all the bad decisions that had been made in her family and move forward into the life she has. She is an intelligent woman and very caring, (as seen in her relationship with her brother). I think she needs to step outside of the circle of tragedy and into a life that she will have the power to create for good. For Valentine, the past cannot be changed but the future holds a lot of potential.


message 7: by Jessica (new)

Jessica | 5 comments Questions 1-3
I would say Theresa deserves some forgiveness because her mother just abandoned her when she was a child essentially. I say some forgiveness because up to a certain point she became responsible for her own actions, such as when she kept dating terrible men. You would think after a while she would just say she's better off alone. Caroline simply sent Theresa on her way because she didn't want Theresa to ruin her happiness. She was finally free because the Abigail and Patrick were already on their own. It was just Theresa that was left and Caroline sacrificed Theresa's future so she could have some happiness with Bill. I feel that Bill was quite strong. He told her to choose him, and there was even foreshadowing regarding Bruno's true character; yet Caroline went with the first person that asked her simply because she didn't want to be an old maid... at twenty, which I completely understand was the societal mentality of that time; I still feel Bill was stronger because he waited all those years 'Love in the Time of Cholera' style and asked her what he could do. The only weak thing about him I would say is how quick he gave up on Theresa.


message 8: by Joyce (new)

Joyce I also see the idea of nesting dolls as so important because Caroline's decision 'nested' in Theresa's life which 'nested' in Valentine's life. Although this book looked at some negative decisions, I think this idea would be equally effective when there is a line of positive decisions in a family as well.


message 9: by Sfc (new)

Sfc Taylor Gang | 2 comments question 4: I wouldn't say any action in life is truly unforgivable it depends on how bad the situation is for us a people to move on we should forgive but that doesn't mean we should just for get about it you never want to hold on to something for to long it can put stress on your body


message 10: by Sharon (new)

Sharon | 3 comments Perhaps subsequent "nests" will proceed positively--- if the book were to continue.


message 11: by Salena (new)

Salena | 3 comments Jessica wrote: "Questions 1-3
I would say Theresa deserves some forgiveness because her mother just abandoned her when she was a child essentially. I say some forgiveness because up to a certain point she became r..."


I think he was weak for giving up on Theresa so quickly, too. I wonder what his motivations were, but then sometimes I think he was so one-track-minded about Caroline that he was willing to give up anything.


message 12: by Matt (new)

Matt (mlabrake) | 95 comments Mod
Joyce wrote: "Question 1: I think just about every character needed forgiveness or redemption and that makes this book very real. It was a reminder that as humans, we make choices and mistakes, and those actions..."

They all “needed” forgiveness, but specifically in Caroline’s case, is it deserved?


message 13: by Matt (new)

Matt (mlabrake) | 95 comments Mod
Joyce wrote: "Question 2: I was shocked at what Caroline did and I think her decision was to spare her own life. I understand that Caroline had a lot of stress and drama in her marriage and didn't need any more,..."

Hi Joyce. I have such a tough time with this one. As Theresa was beginning to look more and more like Bill, I understand how she would want her away from her violent husband. However, as you say, part of Caroline’s reasoning may have been not wanting her public appearance to be affected. Either way, what she did was terrible. There were other solutions, and she chose to make the one she did.


message 14: by Matt (new)

Matt (mlabrake) | 95 comments Mod
Joyce wrote: "Question 4: I believe that everything can be forgiven but not everything can be forgotten. In this story, certain decisions led to horrible results and while the people involved can be forgiven, ot..."

Wow, that’s powerful – “Everything can be forgiven, but not everything can be forgotten.” So true, but so tough. It would take a strong person to forgive Caroline for what she did.


message 15: by Matt (new)

Matt (mlabrake) | 95 comments Mod
Jessica wrote: "Questions 1-3
I would say Theresa deserves some forgiveness because her mother just abandoned her when she was a child essentially. I say some forgiveness because up to a certain point she became r..."


Hi Jessica. Great points. Interesting that you perceive Bill’s character as strong. In looking at both sides of the coin I’m still not sure what I believe. I can see where you are coming from that it took strength to hold out for Caroline. However, you could also look at the situation as Bill being strung along for years by a women who wouldn’t commit, which in my opinion would be a weak characteristic.


message 16: by Matt (new)

Matt (mlabrake) | 95 comments Mod
Sfc wrote: "question 4: I wouldn't say any action in life is truly unforgivable it depends on how bad the situation is for us a people to move on we should forgive but that doesn't mean we should just for get ..."

Interesting perspective. So then, putting yourself in a similar situation as Theresa, you would forgive Caroline for what she did?


message 17: by Matt (new)

Matt (mlabrake) | 95 comments Mod
Sharon wrote: "Perhaps subsequent "nests" will proceed positively--- if the book were to continue."

I wonder Sharon… It does seem like Val is well on track to having a positive life.

I guess it would really depend on the individuals and the situation. All it takes is one life-changing event, positive or negative, to turn the cycle around.


message 18: by Cari (new)

Cari Medina | 8 comments Question 1: I believe that they all deserve forgiveness/redemption for everything they have done and been through even Bruno. All of these characters were so lost and in such a dark place. As much as they wanted to be free from the life they were living they weren't strong enough to make the decision. In the end we are responsible for the choices we make in life. We can either choose to keep the cycle going or break it for the next generation to come. We all handle difficulties and hurt in different ways. For some people hurt and struggles makes us stronger and for others it makes them weaker. I truly felt their pain and felt so sorry for each and everyone one of them.


message 19: by Cari (last edited Jan 28, 2015 10:21AM) (new)

Cari Medina | 8 comments Question:2 First of all it surprised me that Caroline sent her daughter off the way she did. Not only did she send her away but literally disowned her. I believe Caroline made her decision based on saving herself from her abusive husband. Maybe, just maybe she was also saving her daughter from her husband but I think it was more to save herself.


message 20: by Cari (last edited Jan 28, 2015 10:42AM) (new)

Cari Medina | 8 comments Question 3: I believe Bill was so in love with Caroline that having some of her was better than not having her at all. He knew in his heart that Caroline really did love him as well and wanted to be with him but she was afraid for her life and her kids. Bill was so hopeful and never gave up on them. Bill could of had any other woman but he chose to wait for Caroline. Some may call it weak and yes he did deserve better but you too have to be strong person to see the woman you love go through so much pain and respect her decision enough not to get involved even when you don't agree.


message 21: by Cari (new)

Cari Medina | 8 comments Question 4: I can speak for myself in regards to this question. I believe for me that forgiveness is the best medicine. Some people in life are going to hurt you but it's up to you what you do with that hurt that's more important. You can either choose to take it as a lesson and learn from it or have a pity party for the rest of your life. Granted, some actions lead to a more significant outcome than others but we all process hurt differently. I believe when you forgive someone you are not just forgiving that person who hurt you but you are also letting it go so you can move on to a better you.


message 22: by Cari (new)

Cari Medina | 8 comments Question 5: Valentine is a great example of someone who decided to break the cycle of abuse and drug addiction despite her being raised around that environment all her life. Valentine worked really hard in school so she can have a chance at a better life for her and her little brother. She knew if she went down the same road as her mom her little brother would suffer a great deal. The last thing she wanted was for her little brother to suffer more than he already has. Valentine's determination for a better life not only saved her but also the life of her brother. Sometimes we all get to a point in life when Enough is Enough!


message 23: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Matt wrote: "Joyce wrote: "Question 1: I think just about every character needed forgiveness or redemption and that makes this book very real. It was a reminder that as humans, we make choices and mistakes, and..."

Matt, when it comes to forgiveness, I don't think anyone ever deserves it. That's what makes forgiveness so extraordinary. Caroline will never in a thousand lifetimes 'deserve' forgiveness but for those people in her life right now, forgiveness is really the only way to move forward and break the destructive bonds that her decisions caused.


message 24: by Patty (new)

Patty Torres | 4 comments 1. Both Theresa and Valentine deserve redemption. Their life was caused due to Carolyn’s bad choices. I don’t really think Carolyn does. Her bad choices not only ruined her own life but she ruined her children and grandchildren’s lives.


message 25: by Patty (new)

Patty Torres | 4 comments 2. I think Caroline was a selfish woman and her decision to abandon her youngest daughter when she most needed her, was pure selfishness. She knew this was an opportunity to run off and live with Bill.


message 26: by Patty (new)

Patty Torres | 4 comments 3. Bill strikes me a strong man. He tried to fight for what he wanted and he came back for Carolyn regardless of whether she was married or no. After Bruno found out about the affair he kept coming around and calling but Carolyn shut him down. I think Bill didn’t fight for his daughter because he didn’t want Carolyn or his daughter to get hurt by Bruno. It takes strength to wait for someone.


message 27: by Matt (new)

Matt (mlabrake) | 95 comments Mod
Cari wrote: "Question 1: I believe that they all deserve forgiveness/redemption for everything they have done and been through even Bruno. All of these characters were so lost and in such a dark place. As much ..."

Hi Cari. You make some great points about how we are all responsible for our own choices. I agree that regardless of one’s past, their future is in their own hands. One decisive moment can break the cycle.


message 28: by Matt (new)

Matt (mlabrake) | 95 comments Mod
Cari wrote: "Question 4: I can speak for myself in regards to this question. I believe for me that forgiveness is the best medicine. Some people in life are going to hurt you but it's up to you what you do with..."

It takes a strong person to be so forgiving! What an excellent way of looking at things: “I believe when you forgive someone you are not just forgiving that person who hurt you but you are also letting it go so you can move on to a better you.” Powerful message!


message 29: by Matt (new)

Matt (mlabrake) | 95 comments Mod
Patty wrote: "3. Bill strikes me a strong man. He tried to fight for what he wanted and he came back for Carolyn regardless of whether she was married or no. After Bruno found out about the affair he kept coming..."

Hi Patty. Great points. I’m torn when considering whether Bill was a weak or strong man. Personally, I would think someone weak who allowed themselves to get strung along for so many years, and gave up on their daughter so quickly. However, when you think about it in the way you mention, it could also be perceived as strength.


message 30: by Lana (new)

Lana | 3 comments Question 1)
-In my opinion I honestly thing Caroline and Theresa deserve forgiveness.

Both struck with heart ache and regret.
Caroline stuck in a marriage to just be there for the money and having a great life for her children.
and Theresa being pregnant at such a young age and having to defend herself ad raise a child by herself.

2)Bill was a knight in shinning armor from day 1! he had many chances to take advantage of Caroline when she was drunk and such but he didn't. He loved her from day 1 and he was my favorite out of all of them. Even after all she put him through he was still there for her and loved her very much.


message 31: by Alessandra (new)

Alessandra | 5 comments 1. In my opinion, Theresa is the one that deserves both forgiveness and redemption. She became what she was because of her mother’s pressure and lies. She could have been saved, I believe. Theresa’s aunt could have helped her while her heart was still pure and hopeful, but because of Caroline’s lies Theresa was abandoned to herself.

2.I believe Caroline was scared and this fear - which was constantly present in her life - due probably to her husband or maybe to what people could have thought of her, made her take that terrible choice of abandoning her pregnant teenager daughter. Maybe she was scared of losing everything: her wonderful house with her well-kept garden, her social reputation, and a “secure” lifestyle.

3.I think Bill was a bit of both: weak because he was not able to get the girl he loved, strong because he waited for the love of his life, and weak again because he did not fight for Theresa, his own daughter.

4.If it impacts a person’s life in such matter of destroying it, especially if whoever made that action did not make any effort to fix things, than probably yes: there are certain actions in life that are truly unforgivable. I would have never forgiven Caroline if I was in Theresa’s shoes, but as I think I understood her character, than probably Theresa would have forgave her mother even after 30 years because of the great love she still had in her heart for her.

5.In my opinion, Valentine’s greatest struggle was abandoning her mother. In her heart, I am sure, she knew her mother needed help and she loved her from the bottom of her heart; but at the same time she could have never let Theresa do with Jonathan what she did with her.


message 32: by Alessandra (new)

Alessandra | 5 comments Lana wrote: "Question 1)
-In my opinion I honestly thing Caroline and Theresa deserve forgiveness.

Both struck with heart ache and regret.
Caroline stuck in a marriage to just be there for the money and havin..."

Hi Lana!

I agree with you when saying that Bill was your favorite character. I loved him since he first entered the scene as well. The only thing I can say is that I was personally disappointed when he let Caroline marry and when later on he did not fight for Theresa. At the same time though, I admired how he kept going back to Caroline and waiting for the love of his life! I always felt heart-broken when they had to part and Caroline had to go back to her husband.


message 33: by John (new)

John Cedeno | 1 comments Matt wrote: "Welcome to the week 4 online discussion of Nesting Dolls. Please feel free to respond to one, some, or all of the discussion questions listed here. In your post, label each response with the questi..."

Question 4: "Do you believe that any action in life is truly unforgivable?"
In life there are absolutely things that are unforgivable. A few people have previously mentioned how people should always forgive but not forget. That is entirely spot on. However, there are certain things that are better to merely "let go" of. That does not necessarily mean that one is forgiven, nor are they or what they did, forgotten. Whatever the situation was, the person effected has merely moved on. At the same time though, forgiving someone is more helpful to one's self opposed to whoever is being forgiven.
A few years ago someone whom I thought was a best friend of mine betrayed me. Of course I was furious, and held a grudge, until I came to realize one thing. That anger, that hate, the resentment I felt for that person, was only hurting me. The other person was not being directly effected. So I merely "let go." I stopped caring. For the most part, we forgive because we care about a person, and even though they hurt us, we don't want to lose them in our lives. That love, that desire to have them around, is why few things in the world are truly "unforgivable," but some things are unforgivable.

In all honesty I applaud Val for overcoming the many obstacles she faced.

I also applaud Ms. Salena Fehnel for having the writing ability and talent to keep me interested in reading her book when I am not the most fond reader in her class.


message 34: by Joyce (new)

Joyce John, I liked your idea of 'letting go' as the answer to whether something can truly be forgiven. 'Letting go' gives power to the person who has been hurt and that's a good thing.


message 35: by Jorge (new)

Jorge Morocho | 5 comments Question 1: In my opinion if someone deserves redemption and forgiveness would be Theresa. I say this because she was left alone at a very young age. She made a lot of bad decisions and mistakes but because she didn't have somebody to guide her.


message 36: by Catherine (new)

Catherine Ospino Iturcios | 1 comments Question 1)
The one who I think deserve most the forgiveness and the redemptions with in the novel is Theresa. Theresa, she did fall in love for a boy who treat a really sweet even though she and him skip class to get ice cream and such ... He did leave with her at the end with an older women. Yes, she mother walked in on her when taking a shower but her mother Caroline should of spoke to her about what she has thought about during the situation.
Question 2)
I think that Caroline made that decision which impacted Theresa life, because she felt that if she helps Theresa or even if Theresa keeps her own baby she would be a failure through her own husband eyes and her own self. She also tell her own family lies about her daughter.


message 37: by Jorge (new)

Jorge Morocho | 5 comments Question 2: I was shocked when Caroline made the decision that she did. I believe the reason why Caroline made that decision is because she was scared of her life, of how her young pregnant daughter was going to ruin her life and reputation among other people. I believe her true reason is that she wanted to save her daughter from her abusive husband.


message 38: by Jorge (new)

Jorge Morocho | 5 comments Question 3: I feel like Bill was a very strong person. I support this decision because Bill could of picked any other person to spend the rest of his life with but instead he chose the love of his life after a really long time of not being together.


message 39: by Jorge (new)

Jorge Morocho | 5 comments Question 4: Yes, i do believe that there are some actions that are unforgivable. I believe this because actions such as killing or raping or things related to violence are unforgivable in life.


message 40: by Jorge (new)

Jorge Morocho | 5 comments Question 5: I think Valentine's greatest struggle was leaving her mother after she had enough of seeing a lot of domestic violence in the house. She was a strong woman and obviously didn't want her little brother to live all the violence that they were already living at their home. She decided that she wants a really good future for both of them and that's how they ended up in her new life.


message 41: by Joanna (new)

Joanna | 1 comments 1) I think Theresa deserved forgiveness. I believe everyone deserves a second chance and at the beginning she did have good intentions just came upon negativity in her life that brought the worst out of her.
2)I think Caroline was just embarrassed by the fact Theresa became pregnant at such a young age and did not want her around so people wont judge her family.
3)I believe Bill was a strong person for making the decisions of being with the person he wanted to no matter her bad decisions and he did not care about nothing else but her.
4)No i do not believe that any action is truly unforgivable. People make mistakes that hurt and can permanently affect someones life , but if they truly forget and forgive there should not be a problem as long as they work out the problem or seek professional help.
5) I think her greatest struggle was keeping herself focus on what she needed to do to be successful. The fact she had to face difficult times but still go to school and watch over her brother was a very brave thing to do. Not that many people have that strength.


message 42: by William (new)

William Jimenez | 2 comments 1)I believe Theresa deserves the most forgiveness. How she became is all due to negative aspects of her life. In the end she should be forgiven.
2)I believe Caroline was scared of what would come next. Being judged and ridiculed by others and the fact that her daughter got pregnant at such a young age.
3)Bill is an inspirational character. He chose love over anything. He waited and did not give any thoughts to the negative things that have occurred but to what he wants and went for it.
4)I believe most actions are forgiveable. Their are some that have no morals and are despicable but still one can be forgiven.
5)Valentines greatest struggle was leaving when she did. Enough was enough and she left for a better life for herself and her brother.


message 43: by Kaitlyn (new)

Kaitlyn | 3 comments 1) I feel as though Theresa deserves the most forgiveness, as most of the things that occurred, came from a rough start in a family dynamic that's truly no good for anyone. She as the plot plays out depicts how her intentions were good, but came out with a very faulty execution in the end. And at the end of her part she shows the true remorse for everything she let happen to her kids due to her bad habits. She knows what she did wrong and though she may not have solved them in the best way, she did wish she could have fixed everything in the end.

2) I felt as though there could have been two main reasons as to why Caroline had done what she had done. One of which was being concerned that Bruno, as abusive as he was, would find out not only that Theresa was pregnant, but that she wasn't truly his daughter. Which in turn would have ruined his ideal of a perfect family and lead to potential harm for herself and Theresa. The other I feel could be from her not being able to handle the spitting image of the man and the life she could have had.

3) I believe that Bill overall was a very strong person in the fact that no matter how difficult the situation may have become, he was truly always there for both Caroline and Theresa because he truly loved them both. He would power through the hardest of days and rather have himself be completely lonely than find himself with anyone else. He still underneath all of his pain and being unable to see them, managed to stick it out no matter how hard, to keep them both safe and happy. Even though by doing this he putting his wants and needs far after that of his family.

4) I believe that actions can usually be forgiven if the person can feel remorse about the situation and truly be sincerer about it. Though it may always be about what and who, I feel that given time and a true feeling of remorse toward the situation, anything can heal, even if it leaves a scar, and even if the forgiveness is never spoken of.

5) I believe that in the end, the hardest thing for Valentine to truly get over, was the loss of her mother. This being the case as; the abuse was never directed toward her and unlike her mother and grandmother, was never heavy on the alcohol, she was able to shut most things out taking care of her brother, her brother was never really a hard kid to take care of, and school was never a problem as she was straight A's with honor role, and lastly she had discovered more family and still had friends by her side. The hardest thing I believe about her mother dying was that it was so final, that she couldn't call her and hear her voice again, she couldn't see her face again because her body was as good as gone, and that they never truly got any chance to discuss any of the problems that plagued them. Neither of them got a chance to apologize, neither of them got a chance to forgive, and though they both may have been able to do so in their heads, due to the circumstances, they were unable to do so in person. Unfortunately, things that need to be said in some cases are very hard to get over. This I feel is the one situation where it was the only thing really standing in her way. Everything else, very quickly happened, and happened so consistently and often that it rolled off her shoulders, but this is the one and only thing she seems to dwell upon because at its core I feel as though it bothered her that she didn't get to say what she needed to and see her one last time to say goodbye.


message 44: by Zaniah (last edited Feb 02, 2015 12:14AM) (new)

Zaniah Ruiz | 2 comments Matt wrote: "Welcome to the week 4 online discussion of Nesting Dolls. Please feel free to respond to one, some, or all of the discussion questions listed here. In your post, label each response with the questi..."
1. Theresa deserves redemption, period. Although Valentine suffered her hardships and the repercussions and back lash of the decisions that her family history has done, she still made and found a future for herself. Theresa really was dealt the shortest straw because her one, common might I add, major mistake left her completely alone with no knowledge of how to fend for herself considering she always, as her mother said had her "head in the clouds". Which if you ask me, is the best trait other than her eyes, she inherited from her father because without it she would of probably killed herself sooner. Theresa's mother Carolin suffered because of her own doing and all her decisions after her eldest children had grown and moved on in life she was completely ready to give up parenting the one thing she secretly hated most, Theresa. Yes Theresa dug herself into a hole as well, but really being thrown into the wolves before you can even finish puberty takes a toll on one. That stage in her life she was beginning to find herself and being around delinquents for so long aided her into becoming the person she was when she died. My mother was a victim of this common poor parenting mistake and found herself in California, ironically, pregnant with me at the age of 16. That's why I feel so close in a way to Theresa because she's an exact example of what my mother could of been.
2. Plain and simple, Carolin was done. She even admitted to not even looking at her daughter after she hit 9 years old because it reminded her of what she gave up. To see her daughter, the one she gave up happiness for, in such a situation that doesn't have many options for escape it sent her into the deep end. Seeing Theresa in that state of maturity when she hasn't yet fully matured and hearing how she was well prepared to hand off the responsibilities to her aging tired and afraid mother annoyed her and made it even more clear she needs to be sent away and forgotten. Personally I don't agree with any of what she did in handling the pregnancy. When you have a child, sadly to say, no matter how bad they screw up and grow up they are always the your main responsibility. Carolin wanted out of a life that she didn't want to be a part of from the beginning, and to see that her precious youngest, the one that breaks her heart with every glance exchanged has now found a way to keep this façade going inside the home she so desperately wanted quits from terrified and upset her. Watching her reason for continuing on end her life of innocence so abruptly was the last straw. Her true reason was just that, to finally escape the life she forced herself to live and the only way she thought she could achieve that goal was to lie her way to the top.
3. Bill was an extremely strong person for waiting for his love, anyone who views this as weak needs to take a step back and see all that he dealt with and place themselves in his mind and thoughts. The very woman he loves was stolen away from him by a man that can give her the world like she's used to having. Then as he finally lets go he finds himself finally in a place in his life where he can provide for her. With all the excitement in his body he painstakingly walks into the home of the his love and her husband to share good news. As time flies by his heart longs for her but he respectfully steps back and listens to her to keep away but hearts that meet one another, if it is true love, cannot leave forever because forever is a long time. What made him even stronger is the fact that he held his composure and protected her from a far from the monster she married, and although every bone in his body tells him to rescue his damsel in distress, he knows that at that point it wasn't only her to worry about. He was strong in providing a safe haven for a woman that long ago stole his heart and he knew that all his love wasn't unrequited and in knowing that he continued forth in his daily journeys. Weakness in him would have been him settling down with someone and never being able to give his whole heart, because he'll forever would have not learned to fight for what you want even if all odds are against you. His love was strong for Carolin and in turn it made him strong as a man, to know that the love of his life is laying with someone else. I truly believe that anyone can be with anyone, but only one can have the heart and that is enough to fuel the human soul and break all limits on every aspect of human capabilities.
4. In theory there are acts in life that are truly unforgivable, but in reality and in the mind set of a happy healthy living everything is forgivable in the land of the unforgotten. Everything done, every action that has hurt intentionally and unintentionally leaves people with scares that seem to enormous to begin to heal, but in all actuality in order to move forth (and all those who have so in their life will agree) that it isn't impossible to forgive what haunts us is the memory of the emotion felt during the time of disappointment. In my eyes honestly forgetting is a word that is best described as an unlearned lesson. I believe that we should all forgive and move on and gain the technique of remembering without harboring any emotions toward those memories besides gratefulness that you live another day to help others and or just be wiser to save yourself for the next time.
5. Valentines biggest hurdle was her mother's presence. Valentines constant worry for her mothers life made her grow up to fast mentally because she always had to be on her feet to be aware in the time her mother was not. Her mother was her down fall, she doubted her mother's capabilities to prove and handle her responsibilities because of what she went through as a child and seeing her fail and time after time letting them down. Sad to say, her mother dying was good for Valentine because although now she and her brother are orphans with the death of her mother came family, family she so desired for so long.


message 45: by Joyce (new)

Joyce Question 3: I wanted to add a little bit more about why I consider Bill to be a weak person. He was one of the few characters who could make a real decision. Most of the characters had life foisted on them by other people's actions/decisions: Caroline (husband) Theresa (mother) Valentine (all of the above).

But Bill could have chosen a better way. He could have carved a path through all the turmoil. But to do that he had to be strong because, yes, it involved fighting forward. He could have created a better life but he didn't. And he lost out on a lot himself.

Also, many of the characters in this book were in the 'victim' category; it would have been wonderful to see Bill step up to the 'victor' spot.


message 46: by Elijah (new)

Elijah | 1 comments Question 4). Do you believe that any action in life is truly unforgivable?

I believe in certain cases there are a lot of cases that are unforgiving. Things like murder of a loved one. The act of a man abusing a woman. I would have to say that I would believe some actions are unforgiving.


message 47: by Jessica (new)

Jessica | 2 comments Q 4.

I believe that not any action is unforgivable, of course some actions might be grater and more life changing than others, but we hold the power of choice. The choice to let the action make us hate or be resentful to someone for an action that may have cause us pain, or the choice to learn from it and move on, forgive but learn that not every action will be good. Still we move on and we free our soul and heart for the negativity that not forgiving someone will bring to us.


message 48: by Eric (new)

Eric Rios | 3 comments Question 1: About every character needed forgiveness and/or redemption but Theresa deserves some forgiveness because her mother just abandoned her when she was a child basically and she kept dating terrible men. You would think after a while she would do better. Also she should redeem herself for what she went through. .
Question 2: I was shocked at what Caroline did and I think her decision was beyond selfish and she only thought about herself and her own life. No amount of stress should’ve have resulted in sending Theresa away like that.
Question 3: I see Bill as so weak because he did not standing up to what is right and at the end of the story you can see how he lost by his dead silence.
Question 4: I believe that not everything can be forgiven. Even though we must always forgive, it is very hard when you constantly are reminded.
Question 5: Valentine’s greatest struggle was abandoning her mother. Valentine needed to get away from all the bad decisions and move forward into her own life. It is very difficult to leave your own mother but sometimes it’s for the best.


message 49: by Camila (new)

Camila (crocha21) | 1 comments Question 4: I don't think anything in life is truly unforgivable. Forgiveness is growing and being able to move on. At the moment you may think that forgiveness will never happen but eventually time heals all.


message 50: by Catherine (new)

Catherine Cramer | 1 comments 2) I believe Caroline made the decision to make Theresa leave her home when she found out that Theresa was pregnant because she did not want her husband to find out and I do not think she wanted her to “ruin” their family name. I think Caroline is awful for kicking her daughter out of her house while being pregnant at the young age she was. I think her true reason for making the choice Caroline made was because she was embarrassed and ashamed of her daughter and scared of her husband.

4) Yes I do believe there are actions in life that are truly unforgivable. Some being the actions that went on with the characters in this book. Such actions in the story, as the man that shot Valentine when she was a little girl or the man that beat up Valentine’s little brother Jonathan. These actions are not forgivable.


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