Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Waterfall Wednesday 3: Chapters 12-17

Discussion Questions:

1. In Siena, on her way to the ball at Palazzo Pubblico, Gabi likened her experience to being on the red carpet at the Academy Awards, the goal being "to see and be seen." If you were a peasant, watching from the crowd, what would you be thinking as this procession passed by?

I would probably be thinking, "I wish I could go." *big sigh* and that I would love to wear a dress like that. Gabi really did wear a gorgeous dress to that ball. I also would be checking out all the hotties going in and I would be trying to find a way to get into that ball.

2. Though quite nervous about dancing at the ball, Gabi discovers a strange feeling of connection to the time, the people, and the society through the unified beauty of the dance. Have you ever been in a position where you felt out of your element, but, in one, pinpointed moment, became a part of or connected to something bigger than your fear?

This one's a toughie...

I guess the first one that comes to mind is when I went to New Zealand. See, I ended up flying over there alone because my friends had gotten an earlier flight and it was booked when I tried to get my flight (it was a flight deal so it filled up fast). This also meant I had to leave New Zealand three days LATER than they did. So, I was in New Zealand by myself for three days. It's kind of disorienting to be so far from home AND all alone. But, I decided it was worth it. Well, I was kind of scared out of my freaking brain because, HELLO, other side of the world and I knew no one.

Lucky for me I was in Aukland and in this giant hostel. I was just kind of sitting there in the main lounge, reading a book I'd picked up from a bookstore around the corner, trying to pretend I wasn't alone in some foreign place, when I looked up and around and realized...EVERYONE was from somewhere else. It was kind of like this moment when I realized being alone didn't mean I was REALLY ALONE, it just meant I had to make my own friends for the next 3 days because there were hundreds of people in that hostel. So, I ended up making friends with this group from Israel, mostly this guy who I'd kind of met before my friends left (he'd been "hanging" out with one of the girls in my group). He went with me whenever I had to go out late so that I wasn't alone at night. I also met a guy (freakishly hot, might I add) from LA, California - of all places - who took me out during a couple of the days before he had to leave. Once to the beach and once out to lunch.

I'd say it was one of the best experiences of my life. I learned that even on the other side of the world I could be who I wanted and do what I wanted. It was kind of liberating.

3. The kiss. Oh, the kiss. When Marcello finally kisses Gabi, he believes the experience to be proof that they are meant to be together. What did you think about his assumption? Were you surprised at Gabi's reaction to it? Have you ever experienced a kiss that seemed to be prophetic in a similar (or opposite!) way?

That kiss was body melting. I guess I was a little surprised at Gabi's response, but then again, my hormones have ALWAYS been my guide. This people, is NOT a good thing. I would never say any of my kisses were prophetic, but I could say they were the opposite. I mean if I kissed a guy and felt nothing, save the lip on lip contact, then he was a dud in the future department. But, I don't believe in soul mates (I suppose that makes me a cynic) so I don't really do prophetic in regard to relationships. However, when I read, I'd like to think that two people are far better suited than any other in the story. I suppose I prefer the fairytale in my head, but not in real life. I think it's because I've never seen the fairytale in real life.

But, that kiss was one of my favorites. I like when the guy takes control for that first kiss and you can feel every emotion through the words on the pages, like it's your body on the receiving end of the kiss, feeling all the need and want and spark flowing off the man in front of you, causing your heart to beat against your chest so hard you fear it may break away from you. *big sigh* I think I may go reread that now.

4. Many go through their teen years with a subdued sense of immortality. Do you think Gabi has a sense of this teen feeling? And did you think Gabi's converse observation, "Sometimes death came hunting and there was no way to cut it off at the pass." was informed more by the experience of losing her father, her self-admitted closet hypochondria, or the forced maturation of being transported to a different time? How does this observation show Gabi's growth as a character?

Except for a select few, I feel that most people have an innate sense of immortality. Even the death of a family member doesn't necessarily bring it on. I think it would have to be very close to home, like the death of Gabi's father. I think teenage years bring more of a "nothing and no one can hurt me" sense rather than a "I can't die" sense. Even in my twenty's I still feel like I'm a bit immortal. It's hard to see sometimes because so many perspectives are skewed in their own way.

I think Gabi totally felt like nothing would harm her. I think that's why she threw herself into danger as much as she did. I think that times she would look back at life and it would temporarily hit her because of the death of her father. It could be a car on the road to take a life rather than a sword through the back. Still, I don't think it penetrated her deeply. I felt that she still had this sense of being untouchable for most of the book.

5. In the span of a few moments, Gabi goes from sword-wielding teen beauty to man-killing warrior. Did you think her realization of the finality of death -- and her justification for its necessity -- was realistic? And, in her slippers, could you have done the same?

No, I don't think her realization of the finality of death was realistic. I think it was because she still couldn't feel it herself. I'm glad she did have a moment when it was rough. I mean, she could see others die, and that affected her, but not as deeply as it may have a lot of people. However, I agree with her justification for its necessity. I'd kill to protect my family and myself. Say whatever you want about me, but if someone is coming at me to kill me and it's a fight that will mean their death or mine...I'll choose theirs most every time. Yes, I'm harsh I suppose. But life is a fight to the end.

The Author: {Lisa T. Bergren}

The Books:


  1. Can you believe it? Yes, I got the books (postmen are a bit afraid of me) but I don't have time to read!!! Grrrrr....roll on weekend.

  2. Oh the kiss was perfect! It made me melt too. And watching the ball I would be definitely checking out the handsome knights. Oh and the pretty gowns :)

  3. I seriously need to go reread that kiss again. And all the ones that follow. Especially in Torrent ;-) I had a similar experience with being alone in Italy for a few days before I flew home from a school-sponsored photography program and it was definitely strange to look around and realize I knew no one. Not one person. But, like you, it forced me to go out and make a few friends and I had a great time.

  4. Thought provoking questions this week. But of course the one I focus in on is the first because, yup, I'd be right there with you ogling the dresses and the guys and trying to find a way in :P

  5. Good answers! And WOW for you being so far from friends and making new ones in a foreign country. I especially like your answer to #5.

  6. I flew to Germany and back by myself because I was meeting my friend and her family there. I got to know her through an exchange program but I wasn't part of the group who went over. I stayed with her family who only spoke German and at first it was terrifying and I called home every night, but as soon as I got used to the situation I had the most amazing time!

  7. LOL- You and me Jen we must be blog sisters...:) I dont believe in soul-mates either, thats why I love the whole YA and Romance novels for the fantasy aspect of fated soul-mate love!!!

    I think for me and my hubby- it was infatuation which was all that lusty stuff....then the love grew and became mature. I think you make it work with the person your with. I guess maybe my husband is my soul-mate- so now I have to eat my words about not believing in soul mates....LOL

  8. So jealous that you went to New Zealand, I've heard its beautiful.

    In response to number 5, I don't know that she needs justification it was a kill or see your friends killed situation. In fact I don't know that she was even thinking "kill" when she attacked. It was just an instinct to "stop" the attackers.

    But heck yeah, if someone is trying to kill me...I'm so going to try and take them down first. I just need to work on my sword skills a little bit, lol.

  9. Love your answer for number 3--you are such a romantic!!

    ♥ Melissa @ Melissa's Eclectic Bookshelf

  10. Great kiss. At that moment, I knew I wouldn't be able to stop with the assigned chapters. I had to finish.

  11. I suck so bad for not having done this with everyone!!! *tears*

  12. @Anachronist - I hope you were able to keep the stabbing to a minimum. Although, maybe he wasn't that good of a postman. Maybe he needed a good stabbing so an EXCELLENT postman could be found. *counts minutes until weekend* I do love the weekend.

    @Nic - I have dreams about those pretty gowns. I wish we had a good excuse to do that kind of thing now-a-days. Although, there aren't too many medieval balls going on.

    @Jenny - I do love meeting new people while in totally different places. I always tell my family what they are missing out on by not doing the same thing. It feels good to know I can survive. :D

    @Small - I know right!! I'd be testing all the entrances to see if they were *secure*. I would probably have bribed someone for a dress and I would have so ended up inside looking hot. I most likely would have stole the show, LOL! Fantasies a many!

    @Julie - Thanks, Julie! Sometimes I think people with think I a little looney and then I realize I'm okay with that. LOL. New Zealand was AWESOME! I don't think I could ever fully explain the amazingness of it all. It was gorgeous, too.

    @Lisa - LOL, I TOTALLY flew to Germany by myself, too!!! I was meeting my friend there who was an au pair over there. I loved the whole atmosphere and just kind of tried to meld myself into the environment.

    @Tina - Hahaha! It's true, we must be blog sisters! I am married and while I still love the hubby, I still don't believe in soul mates. Wow, I sound so negative, LOL! But really, life is so crazy and not quite what I thought it would be. My perspective has now been skewed!

    @thelibrarianreads - New Zealand is very beautiful! And I totally agree with you on No.5. I also need to practice my sword skills. LOL!

    @Melissa - It's funny because I'm really only a romantic person when it comes to books. It's like there are 2 of me in my head. The one that believes in the mushy gushy and the one that can't handle it in real life, LOL! I'm conflicting myself. :D

    @Amy - To be honest, I gave up the ghost before that. Ha! I just couldn't help myself. I've read 2&3 now. They were just too good!

    @Ashley - *pats on back* don't cry! *hands a tissue* Think positive get to read the posts about the sexy men from the books. *pictures included* :D LOL! (besides...not everyone can rock the coolness as I do ;D)

  13. LOL! I have to disagree. Letting your hormones guide you is a very good thing. :)

    When I went to study abroad in London, I often when out on day treks on my own, and it was a liberating feeling to know that I was doing just fine on my own, of course, I knew in the back of my mind that I could always meet up with the group back at the hotel, so I really admire you for truly being out on your own.

  14. Of course you would be checking out the hotties!!!

    I look up to you in regards to question #2...I'm not good at making friends and I don't like traveling alone...I don't even like to go to the grocery store alone...pathetic!

  15. Mmmm...your example of the hostel is a PERFECT one for what I was trying to describe. Thanks for getting it, and for sharing that experience. I don't think everyone has, and the opportunities to do so seem few and far between...

    WW hugs! LTB

  16. I don't think it's harsh for defending yourself and your loved ones from someone that's threatening to kill them. It's survival. You'd be guilt ridden the rest of your life if you didn't do everything in your power to protect your family including kill that person. Let's hope you aren't ever in that position!

    You make me want to go back and read that kiss scene again too! I'm led by emotion and I know Gabi was feeling for something for Marcello even if he was taken and she was leaving. There were sparks! That was the best kiss!!

    Yeah, I have to go read that part again!


  17. I finally read two first parts. I must say I am conflicted but I'll postpone my judgement untill the third part (yes, I do have it too - I am mad, I know).

    I don't believe in soul mates so here we think alike Jen. Hormones might say one thing but real life is a tad more complicated.


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XOXO Jen the Bibliophile

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