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Archived 2011 Group Reads > Mists of Avalon 13: 655-712 (Chapters 1-5)

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message 1: by Stephanie (last edited Nov 15, 2011 03:40AM) (new)

Stephanie It seems that this book is turning into a soap opera and I can't decide who I'm supposed to think is right.

Of these characters who do you find to be most true in action and thoughts?

Is Morgaine really doing what is right? In some ways I say yes, and in others it seems that Viviane's death has had too much of an influence on her actions and she is only doing what she thinks might be best for Avalon.

And, I can't help thinking that the way one generation was raised (thinking Lancelet, Arthur, Morgaine, Morgause, Gwen) influenced how they have raised their children (adoptive or otherwise) and said children have grown up to be horrible people I have a hard time reading or caring about...I suppose that's true of any destiny...

Thoughts?


message 2: by Catherine (new)

Catherine (catsmeeow) I still find myself siding with Morgaine. I find that compared to others she is the "most true in action and thoughts." Morgause is also pretty steady and reliable in her actions and thoughts.

Arthur vowed to side with Avalon and is now essentially Christian. Gwen is the most annoying to me since she acts so pious and judgemental (such as judging Morgaine and Accolon) when she herself has lustful thoughts and is jealous of the relationship between Arthur and Lancelot. I find she has the greatest disconnect between her actions and inner thoughts.

I definitely have a harder time caring about the children of the story. Gwydion seems almost evil. I noticed all the comparisons of Morgaine and Gwydion to felines again after you pointed it out last time haha.


message 3: by Amanda (new)

Amanda I still sympathise with Morgaine, but she seems to have transformed into Viviane since her mentor's death. It is as though she now feels that these duties now fall on her and she behaves in a way counter to her best judgement because it is the right thing to do. I found the young, morally independant Morgaine easier.


message 4: by eHawk (new)

eHawk I agree with folks above.

Everyone is doing a lot of "well, I think this is wrong, but look at all the bad crap I've done. I can't really talk." Only then when it comes time for action there's a reversion to knee jerk reactions.

The penance/punishment themes are a bit heavy handed, I'm interested to see if some of the distance brings back some of the independence, especially in Morgaine.


message 5: by Catherine (new)

Catherine (catsmeeow) Amanda wrote: "I still sympathise with Morgaine, but she seems to have transformed into Viviane since her mentor's death. It is as though she now feels that these duties now fall on her and she behaves in a way ..."

Yah she's definitely more like Viviane. I think Morgaine was the best when she was still an Avalon priestess. After she left Avalon and was in Camelot without any power, it felt like she wasn't that interesting and independent. So although she seems more hardline now, I'm glad she's gaining some power back at least.


message 6: by Catherine (new)

Catherine (catsmeeow) In addition, I was thinking about all the spinning and weaving that took place in the book and how Morgaine hated that shw often had visions from The Sight while spinning/weaving such as when she was weaving the green and brown pattern in this section.

First of all, there is the connotation of "spinning a tale" which is how Mists starts - Morgaine says she'll tell the story, but she believes the Christians will end up telling the more definitive version.

Secondly, there is the connection to the Fates, the three old crones that controlled destiny. They would spin thread that represented each person's destiny. One would spin the thread (start life), one would measure the length, and one would cut the thread.

The spinning does seem to connect to destiny and fate. The Sight shows what is happenning or will happen and the viewer does not always have a chance to change it. As Morgaine often says, what the Goddess wills will happen, and I think at one point she even questions why she should bother trying since it will happen anyway. I think Morgaine hates spinning in large because it reminds her that she's locked in her destiny (to see the fall of Avalon?).


message 7: by Amanda (new)

Amanda I think you are absolutely correct, Catherine. I hadn't thought too hard about this subject, so thanks for bringing it up! I left it as a conveniently monotonous, yet seemingly harmless task used by Bradley to explain entry into a trance-like state, but I like the concept of a dual meaning of women's craft, both magical and ordinary.


message 8: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie Catherine wrote: "In addition, I was thinking about all the spinning and weaving that took place in the book and how Morgaine hated that shw often had visions from The Sight while spinning/weaving such as when she w..."

i love this1 i love that i didn't even notice all of this, but see things differently now! thanks catherine! :D


message 9: by Catherine (new)

Catherine (catsmeeow) Thanks guys, I was worried I'd be brushed off as a lunatic for reading too deeply but everyone in the group has seemed pretty inviting of ideas so far =)


message 10: by Amanda (new)

Amanda Ideas are what we want, Catherine, the crazier they sound the better!


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