characters in ‘Gone With the Wind’ that aren’t in the movie

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I recently re-read Gone With the Wind and watched the movie.  Even though the movie does an excellent job of adapting the book, several characters were necessarily chopped out (sounds gruesome, doesn’t it?).  And I’m going to talk about them today.

~Grandma Fontaine – Apparently Tony Fontaine is in the movie, but I don’t remember him.  At any rate, Grandma Fontaine is a great character who absolutely owns the two major scenes she’s in (both of them involve her talking to Scarlett and giving her advice and so on).  I would have paid money to see even one of those scenes make it into the film.

~Will Benteen – Yay for Will!  My favorite ‘deleted character’ in GWTW.  He comes to Tara one day as a sick, wandering soldier and, after the family nurses him back to health, becomes a vital part of Tara.  But there’s more to Will than his ability to work hard – you’ll have to read the book to find out what I’m talking about. 😉

~Archie (no last name because he’s a murderer and doesn’t want to share it) – Archie’s another favorite character (actually, all the characters that were cut are favorites of mine…*sigh*).  Yes, he’s a murderer but he has a much higher moral code than Scarlett (who is also a murderer).  Margaret Mitchell never wrote a dull, one-note character and Archie proves that over and over again. (Jeff Bridges would be perfection in the role, btw.  Just sayin’.)

~Dilcey – Dilcey is Pork’s wife (and in case you didn’t know, Pork is Gerald’s valet) and Gerald buys her so that she and Pork can be together (Prissy is their daughter, fyi, and Gerald buys her as well).  It’s such a great character moment for Gerald!  And later in the story, Dilcey gets more characterization and she’s amazing.

~Mrs. Tarleton – What happens to her and her family is SO SAD. 😦  You don’t get to see much of Mrs. Tarleton, but she’s a good character nonetheless.

~Wade & Ella – A lot of people probably don’t know that Scarlett had two other children besides Bonnie (one from each previous marriage).  You hardly learn a thing about Ella (Scarlett often thinks of her as being a silly, scatter-brained child, though you never actually see evidence of that).  But I wish Wade had been in the movie because his interactions with Rhett are the sweetest, most adorable thing and would’ve advance Rhett’s character even more.  Rhett is the only one who comforts Wade when he (Wade) thinks that Scarlett’s dying (she’s really giving birth to Bonnie).  Rhett is the one who refuses to let Scarlett tarnish the memory of Wade’s father.  And Rhett knows just how to talk to Wade and get him to respond – like I said, it’s really sweet.

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There’s other characters, too, like the Elsings and the Calverts and Hilton who either don’t get much screen-time or don’t get any.  But I don’t much care about them.  I do hope this post inspires you to read Gone With the Wind if you haven’t already.  And don’t worry about the length!  The writing is so good and interesting that I bet you’ll fly right through it.

Have you read or watched GWTW?  Who’s your favorite character in either/both?

Eva

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the outsiders read-along: chapter 6

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Poor Johnny.  Poor Ponyboy.  Poor Dally.  Poor Darry.

*tears*

Chapter 6 begins right where the previous chapter left off – with Dally telling Ponyboy and Johnny how Cherry is helping the greasers in their turf war against the Socs.  She feels like the whole thing is her fault (Dally agrees) so she’s doing her best to make up for it.  Interesting that she’s clear-headed enough to see the right of things when her boyfriend was the one who got killed.  I really do like Cherry.

I realized while reading this chapter that all the characters in this book, with the exception of the adults and Darry, are younger than me. (And in less than a month I’ll be as old as Darry.)  It’s really sobering to think how young – and yet how old – they all are. 😦

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JOHNNY IS SO BRAVE AND SWEET AND GOOD.  When he asks about his parents…GAH.  My heart breaks for him.  And then he runs into the burning church to save those kids (don’t worry, I’m not forgetting Ponyboy’s heroism!).  Ponyboy tells us that it was the only time he’d seen Johnny without “that defeated, suspicious look in his eyes” (p. 92) – for once, Johnny can do something good and useful and do it well.  Maybe he even thought that it would balance the scales, so to speak (because he killed Bob).  But whatever was going through Johnny’s head, he’s awesome and a cinnamon roll and I love him.

 

That scene where Ponyboy and Dally reconcile?  It made me cry the first time I read the book and it’s done the same ever since.  This re-read was no exception.  It’s powerful, moving stuff.  I would like to point out, though, that I believe Hinton made a mistake.  She writes “In that second what Soda and Dally and Two-Bit had been trying to tell me came through” (p. 98) but it was more Johnny who talked to Ponyboy about Darry than Dally did, right?  Though Dally does say, in chapter 5, “Kid, you ought to see Darry.  He’s takin’ this mighty hard…” (p. 81)  So I don’t know…

Quotes I like:

No, it wasn’t Cherry the Soc who was helping us, it was Cherry the dreamer who watched sunsets and couldn’t stand fights. (p. 86)

Darry was the unofficial leader, since he kept his head best… (p. 89) – #goals

Discussion Question!

-Did this chapter bring you to tears?

Eva

follow-up to my rant

Ugggh.  I just want this whole thing to be over.

But since posting my rant about being asked to take down a negative review of an indie book, I’ve since been messaged by the author’s friend.  She explained that she, personally, believes that reviews shouldn’t be taken down just because they aren’t good.  It’s the author that asked her to message me about taking down my review (why the author didn’t message me herself, I have no idea).  So I’m just writing this quick post to clarify things and apologize to the author’s friend.  I had no idea her views and the author’s views didn’t align when I posted my original rant.

And so, goodnight.

Eva

time for a rant

A couple weeks ago, I requested – and received – a book for review.  (I’m not going to give you the title of the book or the name of the author because my rant centers around the author and I’d rather not draw attention to her.)

So anyway, I read the book and wrote a review on Goodreads (it was also published on Amazon).  It was a two star review, mainly because the book was pure romance (something I didn’t know going into the story) and I don’t much like romance novels.  However, I said very clearly – and more than once – that fans of fluffy romance would really enjoy the book. (And when I say ‘fluffy romance’ I don’t mean it as a put-down.)

All was well and good, I thought.  Until this evening when I arrived home from church to find a long message from the author’s representative in my Goodreads inbox, asking me  (but it was ask-ordering, I felt) to take down my review.  To quote her:

“…if you don’t enjoy the book and you’ve received it in exchange for a review, it’s better to just not review it. The reason the author gives out copies is to help their book get more and higher ratings, and getting a low one really beats the purpose of having reviewers read it. There’s kind of a general rule in the indie author world that if you get a book to review and your rating is 2 stars or lower, just don’t review it…you got a copy ( the author giving it to you so her rating could go up ) but instead it went down which beats the whole purpose of it.”

I took down my review from Goodreads and Amazon but my two-star rating still stands.  So now when people check out this book on GR, they’ll see my two-star rating but not my review which clearly stated that fans of romance would dig the book (it just wasn’t my cup of tea).

It strikes me as really unethical and bordering on dishonest to delete reviews that aren’t three stars or more simply because it lowers the book’s overall rating on Goodreads.  Personally, I’m very suspicious of books that have only four or five star reviews (which is pretty much what the book in question has right now).  And what’s up with that ‘general rule’ thing?  I’ve never heard of it and I know indie authors and…yeah.  It’s messed up, IMO.

What happened to “I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for my HONEST review”?

If you’re an indie author (or a writer in general), I’d love to get your thoughts on this!  Do you hold to that particular rule of reviews?  What do you have to say about this issue?

Eva

P.S. Nine times out of ten, I don’t think authors should respond to reviews of their work.  Thoughts?

the outsiders read-along: chapter 5

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So, in this chapter, Ponyboy and Johnny hang out at the church in Windrixville.  They cut their hair, read Gone With the Wind voraciously, and stuff themselves with barbecue sandwiches and banana splits at Dairy Queen when Dally comes for a visit.  Not a lot happens in terms of action but this is a great chapter for character development.

All the thinking Ponyboy does about how Bob died only last night…it really brings home the fact that the entire story takes place in one week.  I know it’s a short book, but so much happens that it’s kind of mindboggling.

They watched Gone With the Wind together!  I would’ve loved to see their reaction to everything. 🙂  And I love how they read and discuss it, too. (Ponyboy must have been reading almost non-stop to reach Sherman’s siege of Atlanta on the fifth day.)

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I know some people have said that it’s shallow and stupid for Ponyboy to be so worried about his hair at a time like this, but I think that’s ridiculous.  His hair is a part of his identity and, yeah, you’d hate having to give it up (especially with how awful it looks afterwards).  Like Ponyboy says…“Our hair labeled us greasers, too – it was our trademark.  The one thing we were proud of.  Maybe we couldn’t have Corvairs or madras shirts, but we could have hair.” (p. 71)

We get to see yet another side of Dally in this chapter – he really is quite a complex character, isn’t he?  As Johnny recalls… “…one night I saw Dally gettin’ picked up by the fuzz, and he kept real cool and calm the whole time.  They was gettin’ him for breakin’ out the windows in the school building, and it was Two-Bit who did that.  And Dally knew it.  But he just took the sentence without battin’ an eye or even denyin’ it.  That’s gallant.” (p. 76)

Also, Dally speaks up a bit for Darry but Ponyboy doesn’t even hear it. *sigh* (p. 81)

Quotes I Like:

I put the book down reluctantly.  I wanted to start it right then. (p. 71) [Pony Gets Me.]

I was glad I had to run away with [Johnny] instead of with Two-Bit or Steve or Dally.  That would be one thing they’d never think of – soap. (p. 72-73)

Dally was real.  I liked my books and clouds and sunsets.  Dally was so real he scared me. (p. 76)

Johnny shrugged.  “Yeah,” he said with a sigh.  “I guess we’re different.”
“Shoot,” I said, blowing a perfect smoke ring, “maybe
they are.” (p. 78)

Discussion Questions!

-Why do you think Johnny hero-worships Dally?

-What’s your interpretation of the poem ‘Nothing Gold Can Stay’?

-Why do you think Cherry is helping the greasers when one of them killed her boyfriend?

Eva

similarities between ‘fawkes’ and ‘glimpses of truth’

It’s no secret that I love Nadine Brandes’ newest release, Fawkes.  While I was reading it, I noticed a few similarities between Fawkes and one of my favorite Christian novels – Glimpses of Truth.  Now this is NOT to say that I think Nadine plagiarized Jack Cavanaugh or anything like that.  I have a tremendous amount of respect for her and I would never suggest that; I just thought the similarities were interesting.

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-Both books feature a main character named Thomas.  Both characters have serious problems with their vision – Thomas Fawkes’ left eye has turned to stone, Thomas Torr has black spots in his eyes that are steadily growing larger and impeding his vision.  IMO, this is the coolest similarity between the two books.  And the most obvious.

-Both Thomases have issues with their fathers. (Thomas Torr’s dad raped his mom and then tried to kill him.  Thomas Fawkes’ dad…well, just read the book.)  Both Thomases were raised by a man who is not their father (but who was basically a father to them) – Norwood and Howell.

-Both Thomases are in love with an awesome girl who is also being courted by a nobleman’s son.  Though that’s where this particular comparison ends because Henry is pretty horrid and Kendall is the SWEETEST BEST MOST BRAVE CINNAMON ROLL EVER.

-Both Thomases go back and forth in their convictions and beliefs, though Thomas Torr is much more certain of what he believes in than Thomas Fawkes.  Still, both wrestle with doubts relating to what side they’ll take in a religious power struggle. (I know that Fawkes is more of an allegory than a history, but you know what I mean.)

-And both books end with the Thomases and their lady loves watching their father/father figure be executed.  Both books leave me a blubbering mess because beloved characters die and other beloved characters have to see it happen and it’s horrible.  Nadine Brandes and Jack Cavanaugh are too good at messing with my emotions, tbh.

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So.  Have you read either of these books?  Do you see the similarities?  Or do you think I’m totally off my rocker? *grins*

Eva

the outsiders read-along: chapter 4

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This chapter is when things Get Real.  And I know I sound like a broken record, but if you’re new to The Outsiders, go read this chapter before diving into my spoilery thoughts!

Ponyboy and Johnny are threatened by five Socs at the local park.  It’s two-thirty in the morning, Ponyboy is emotionally unstable, the Socs are drunk, and Johnny’s scared stiff; it’s a recipe for disaster and disaster does strike.  When the Socs almost drown Ponyboy, Johnny stabs the leader (Bob) with a switchblade…and kills him.  With the fear of arrest, jail, and the electric chair hanging over their heads, Ponyboy and Johnny skip town with Dally’s help and head off to Windrixville.

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This is a heavy chapter and I’ve got a lot to discuss today so it’s best we just jump in.  For starters, I really love how Johnny’s first thought is to ask Dally for help and how Pony calms right down because, of course Dally will get them to safety.  They trust him, despite his dangerous side, and that trust isn’t broken.  We really get to see a different side of Dally in this chapter, don’t we?  Before, we’ve really only seen that’s he’s angry and dangerous and doesn’t much respect girls and that he has a little bit of a soft spot for Johnny.  But between his helping Ponyboy and Johnny and what Ponyboy says about how Dally rides honestly in horse races (p. 60-61), you can see that Dally is more than a one-note hood.

Can I just take a moment to say how sorry I feel for Johnny?  Only sixteen and he has a death on his conscience (because whether or not it was murder – more on that in a bit – any normal person would still feel guilty, even if it wasn’t their fault).  MY PRECIOUS CINNAMON ROLL DESERVES HAPPINESS. 

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And speaking of Johnny, I really got a sense of the age gap between him and Ponyboy in this chapter.  He’s so calm after The Incident (and Ponyboy’s freaking out), though that could be more shock than maturity.  And then when they jump off the train and Ponyboy’s like “Why didn’t you wake me up?” and Johnny says “I didn’t want to until I had to” – it’s something the Mom Friend would do. 🙂 (Not saying that Johnny is the Mom Friend of the gang.  But you get the idea.)

I feel so bad whenever I read the thing about Ponyboy and Johnny going to church…and then never going to church again.  I do hereby swear right now that I will never look back in church, no matter what I hear going on behind me.  Ugggh.  They’re so sweet, sitting in the back and “trying to get something out of the sermon” (p. 66) and then Two-Bit and Soda had to go and ruin it. *growls*

Quotes I Like:

Towheaded and shifty-eyed, Dally was anything but handsome. [And then they went and cast Matt Dillon in the movie!]  Yet in his hard face there was character, pride, and savage defiance of the world. (p. 59)

Dally handed me a shirt about sixty-million sizes too big. (p. 61) (This line always makes me grin.)

He messed up Johnny’s hair.  “Take care, kid,” he said softly. (p. 62)

I went to sleep in a hoodlum’s jacket, with a gun lying next to my hand. (p. 62)

There are things worse than being a greaser. (p. 65)

Discussion Questions!

-Do you view Johnny knifing Bob as murder or self-defense?

-What do you think of Dally at this point in the story?  He’s a complicated character and I’d love to know your thoughts!

Eva