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The Story of Edgar Sawtelle > PART I: Forte's Children WARNING: Contains Spoilers!

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message 1: by Karey (last edited Oct 08, 2008 11:09AM) (new)

Karey (kareyshane) | 162 comments Mod
Thanks for everyone's input on how to go about this. It looks like if we break up the discussion into looking at one PART per week, this will make the discussion a five week endeavor. This first week takes us up to page 133.


message 2: by Diane (new)

Diane  (dianedj) I have been waiting for today to start discussing.


Edgar's muteness most impacted me when he called the Operator trying to help his father. The communication between Edgar and his family and the dogs had always been so seamless. I never imagined there would be a situation when Edgar was not able to communicate. It was heartwrenching.

Naturally, I suspect Claude poisoned Gar (reference the Prologue when Claude was in Korea many years prior), but I have a nagging question in the back of my mind....what made the vet (who was the one who discovered Edgar so distraught over his father) happen to drive by the house during that brutal snow storm? Also, did Claude hold onto to poison all those years....or had he used it before? or am I wrong in presuming it was Claude in the Prologue?

Looking forward to provoking discussion.....

message 3: by Karey (new)

Karey (kareyshane) | 162 comments Mod
Spoiler alert up to page 133. Like you, Diane, it was heartwrenching when Edgar couldn't phone for help. When his mother touched her head to his, and he wondered if he was to blame, these words couldn't have been put more beautifully: "At her touch, a flame rose in him and ate him alive, and when it was gone he was left sitting hollowed out in her arms."

It's interesting to me that Gar, at the moment of his passing, was just as incapable of communicating to Edgar. Poignant.

It didn't even occur to me that Claude might have poisoned Gar. It will be interesting to see if that plays out in the story. (I've thought it was Claude in the Prologue, like you.)

My thoughts about Doctor Papineau showing up in the snowstorm are that the operator must have made an educated guess since it was a small town, and someone making a distraught call, slamming on the phone just might be Edgar.

The image that lingers in my mind is the wild dog that Edgar has named Forte, like the dog that was shot. Any thoughts about what it might be a presage of? Perhaps it just gives us a glimpse into the compassionate heart of Edgar.

message 4: by Diane (last edited Sep 30, 2008 05:21PM) (new)

Diane  (dianedj) SPOILER ALERT UP TO PAGE 133 -

I love your reference to Gar not being able to communicate to Edgar; poignant is right!

Regarding Claude poisoning Gar - although I talk like it is definitely Claude in the prologue, it is me just making a presumption. However, Claude was in the navy, and the person in the prologue was in the navy. The timeframe also fits.

Reference page 76-77 when Claude tells Edgar that Gar would let Forte fight other dogs (something i personally despiste). I don't believe that to be true nor do I believe Gar shot Forte as Claude claims. I feel that all of Claude's tales are going to "unravel" at some point in the story, maybe at the climax?

Onto more beautiful moments - I found it very touching when Iris was giving birth and Gar was teaching Edgar about this as it was going to be Edgar's litter. The way Gar kept his eyes closed and instinctively explained everything to Edgar, step by step...

As far as the "wild Forte" - I don't think we've heard the last of him. I feel he is going to play a role in Edgar's life somehow.

message 5: by Karey (last edited Feb 25, 2009 03:31AM) (new)

Karey (kareyshane) | 162 comments Mod
It's late and I'm headed off to sleep, but I had to see if you'd posted any more comments on The Story of Edgar Sawtelle, Diane. I enjoyed reading what you had to say. Thanks. I'm really enjoying being able to discuss this wonderful work of literature with you.

message 6: by Diane (new)

Diane  (dianedj) And I am enjoying discussing with you (good thing since we are the only two - LOL!)
after a good night's sleep, I'll look forward to your posting! (what page are you on now?)

message 7: by Karey (new)

Karey (kareyshane) | 162 comments Mod
I'm on page 223, and the suspense is mounting! You? I should have anticipated Claude's nefarious nature...but part of me just likes to push those hunches aside so that the story is completely new to me. I'm at the part where the narrator exposes the fact that he'd killed two dogs at Dr. Papineau's office.

He is now driving Trudy to the doctors, after having stitched up the two dogs.

message 8: by Diane (last edited Oct 03, 2008 08:14PM) (new)

Hi Karey - I am on page 367. Since you are so close to finishing part 2 (or maybe you are by now), do you want to start the new folder on it? I'd love to talk to you about what you posted above and other scenes if you're ready to open Part 2 folder. Want to copy in your post that he killed the 2 dogs at Page's office into the Part 2 Folder?

message 9: by Carla (new)

Carla | 5 comments Sorry about your cat, my daughter's cat was 19 years old, and he passes away on Monday.

message 10: by Diane (new)

Diane  (dianedj) Julie - I think there were so many sentences throughout the book such as the one you selected above. Great posting. I will have to search through my copy and see what I can come up with.

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