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Topic: November RAL - Stone Heart - Writing Style

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Subject: November RAL - Stone Heart - Writing Style
Date Posted: 11/10/2013 7:44 PM ET
Member Since: 11/11/2005
Posts: 5,238
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What did you think of the unusual way in this book was written?   No chapters, all in 2nd person and with Lewis and Clark's diary entires presented on the same page opposite Sacajawea's "journal" entries?

Date Posted: 11/10/2013 8:28 PM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2009
Posts: 929
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I had a little trouble going back and forth because the voices were so different.  I found myself wanting to continue on with one or the other. 

Date Posted: 11/10/2013 11:52 PM ET
Member Since: 11/11/2005
Posts: 5,238
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I've always had problems with books with no chapters.   Primarily because I'm a slow reader, and I need something like the end of a chapter because it helps me feel like I'm making progress in the book :-)   This book was short with LOTS of white space on the pages, so it didn't bother me as much.    And the 2nd person narrative bothered me at first, but I got used to it.      I'm still not sure why the author did either of these though -  the no paragraph thing and 2nd person narrative.   I could see several obvious places in the book where there could have been chapter breaks.   Does anyone see anything that either added to the book somehow?

As for juxtaposing Lewis & Clark's journal entires opposite Sacajawea's story, it was very interesting to compare the two..  It helped give authenticty to the story, because L&C's journal entries gave the facts that backed up Sacajawea's stories.    What did drive me a little nuts, though, was trying to figure out when the best time to jump back and forth between the two on the page was.   In all cases, I would have liked to keep reading Sacajawea's story as it was more interesting to me, but I knew that reading the journal entries were "necessary".



Last Edited on: 11/10/13 11:52 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 6:05 AM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2009
Posts: 929
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What did drive me a little nuts, though, was trying to figure out when the best time to jump back and forth between the two on the page was.   In all cases, I would have liked to keep reading Sacajawea's story as it was more interesting to me, but I knew that reading the journal entries were "necessary".

Yes, Lynne, that's exactly how I felt.  I think the Lewis and Clark entries authenticated what Sacajawea was saying but I wanted more of her!

Date Posted: 11/12/2013 11:50 PM ET
Member Since: 6/5/2007
Posts: 2,507
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I really dislike stream-of-consciousness writing, and found the second person narrative to be an odd choice. However, I enjoyed the Lewis and Clark journal selections - mostly because I was fascinated by the fact that not only was spelling not standard for English, but that there was nothing to keep one from spelling the same word more than one way in your own journal.

 

Date Posted: 12/3/2013 11:16 AM ET
Member Since: 5/31/2009
Posts: 2,914
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I found the writing style a bit trying until I became accustomed to reading it.  Sometimes the journal entries were quite unrelated to the dialog from Sacajawea and that bothered me.  All in all, though, it was a good read and I enjoyed it.  



Last Edited on: 12/5/13 10:31 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/4/2013 11:30 AM ET
Member Since: 4/27/2007
Posts: 8,514
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I'm finally taking a moment to chime in here! Better late than never!

I found the writing style of Stone Heart to be so distracting that I couldn't get into it. I tried several times to read it, but I just couldn't attach. It was too scattered for me. It may not be the book's fault, entirely, because I've given up on a handful of books in the past few weeks. My attention span doesn't seem to be the best, and if something doesn't grab me right away, I have a really hard time coming back to it.