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Author Topic: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)  (Read 276 times)

Offline Hawkbit

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Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« on: July 28, 2018, 12:41:42 AM »
Discussion topic for chapters 1-5 once you have read them.  :hawkbit2

Offline Acacia Heartstrings

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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2018, 07:37:18 PM »
First I want to see your comments.     :blackberry3

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Offline Chibiscuit

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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2018, 02:56:30 PM »
I'll break the proverbial ice then ;) I just read chapter 1 which in my copy is only 5 pages yet I have a surprisingly large amount to say about it.

Okay so, it has been about 7 years or so since I read the novel and I have a very poor memory (I remember impression instead of facts) so there will undoubtedly be a lot more  I've forgotten and which will surprise me.

First off, I love it when books use quotes at the start of their chapters. It looks cool, I think.

Secondly, the use of *+note to explain concepts about the rabbit's world: I love that too. It's a nice way to explain concepts about the world you're creating without interrupting the flow of the book - if you're rereading and know these things, you can easily ignore them and carry on. For others, they provide useful information.

Thirdly, the note about Owsla: I had no clue Owsla rabbits weren't always fighters! I always had the image of a militaristic Owsla in mind but the note clearly states that this isn't always the case. I find this interesting, really.

Fourthly, this line:
Quote
[...]'Unless you feel it isn't safe?' he added.
The way in which he asked suggested that he did in fact think that Fiver was likely to know better than himself, and it was clear from Fiver's reply that this was accepted between them.
I like it a lot. I think, right of the bat, it shows the bond of trust the brothers have. 'Tis nice.

And thousand-ly, I wonder if cowslips being a rare, exclusive delicacy for rabbits played a part in naming Cowslip :cowslip exactly that?
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Offline Chipster-roo

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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2018, 08:00:40 PM »
Currently two chapters in.  The last time I read the book entirely was near the end of 2016 (I re-read a few isolated passages since then, but not the whole thing).

I like the way the book begins.  A few paragraphs are spent describing the area around Sandleford, it really feels like you're there.

I kinda like Toadflax.  Sure, he's a big jerk and a bully :toadflax but he's also an interesting character.  I'm kinda disappointed we see so little of him (but then, there's absolutely no way Hazel could have convinced him to leave).  He does get a pretty great moment in many chapters though.

Thirdly, the note about Owsla: I had no clue Owsla rabbits weren't always fighters! I always had the image of a militaristic Owsla in mind but the note clearly states that this isn't always the case. I find this interesting, really.
This is also something really interesting; I had forgotten it too, possibly because the series chose to depict pretty much all owslas as armies, or varying skill.

This kinda reminds me of a passage in TFWD where Flyairth expresses trouble figuring out who is in the owsla and who isn't, with Hazel explaining that "we're all in the owsla, really".

And thousand-ly
:hannah4

I wonder if cowslips being a rare, exclusive delicacy for rabbits played a part in naming Cowslip :cowslip exactly that?
This is an interesting possibility I hadn't thought about.  Cowslips (the plant) are considered flayrah, and the rabbits in Cowslip's warren have a lot of it, so...this might be the case :cowslip

(interestingly the film changes the cowslip stolen by Toadflax to a coltsfoot; not sure why)

I'll post my thoughts on chapter 2 soon :prince-rainbow
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Offline Hawkbit

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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2018, 01:47:49 PM »
Ok. :) I have gotten my copy from my place at last so I can start reading.  I honestly probably haven't read the book since FHC was started...so we're going on seven years since I've actually sat down to read it.  Scary that a forum member who says the book is his #1 hasn't read it in so long. :hawkbit

Anyway:

Chapter 1 - What I admire most as the chapter begins is the way Adams describes the English countryside.  I've heard the best way an author can present what is going on to stir the imagination, is to paint pictures with words so that you can totally understand what is going on in the scene.  This is what I get as I read about the area surrounding Sandleford.  When we are introduced to Hazel and Fiver, you quickly realize that Hazel would be one of those young handsome rabbits just the way Adams describes him.  Fiver, a scaredy runt.

What also I noticed that I haven't noticed in a long time is how much of the movie dialogue has been lifted right from the book.  Pretty much the entire part up to the notice board of the film--all the dialogue the rabbits are given came right from the book.  I assume that other chapters will follow as I go along.  Just surprised as I often know movies adapt the screenplay, but so far its written nearly word for word as it is in the book.  Never picked up on how much before. :)

Offline Hawkbit

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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2018, 02:57:56 PM »
Ok...Chapter 2 is very short.  It gives us a bit about the Chief Rabbit, Threarah, but you get the sense he's just old and doesn't care to move about anymore.  Lazy fat rabbit maybe! :hawkbit2 He isn't interested in killing these two for suggesting such crazy talk but he certainly isn't up for "traipsing around" as he put it.

As I noted for chapter 1, much of the movie dialogue is pulled right from the chapter.  If you watch the movie scene and then read chapter 2 you'll see that much of what Threarah says he says in the film, in the same "I don't care" attitude.  I suspect as I continue to read, I will find much of the movie dialogue pulled right from the book.  As I said, I never realized they just lifted it from the book.  That doesn't always happen with adaptations!  Most impressed.

Offline Chibiscuit

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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2018, 05:12:49 PM »
I like the way the book begins.  A few paragraphs are spent describing the area around Sandleford, it really feels like you're there.
Chapter 1 - What I admire most as the chapter begins is the way Adams describes the English countryside.  I've heard the best way an author can present what is going on to stir the imagination, is to paint pictures with words so that you can totally understand what is going on in the scene.  This is what I get as I read about the area surrounding Sandleford.
I agree - the opening scene describing the countryside is very well done and it does a good job of activating the imagination. I could see it play out like a scene in a film. Very nice.

On a note of things I DO remember: being confused by all the different plants and flowers and such. Also some words for the landscape. It can be a challenge when English is not your native language!

This kinda reminds me of a passage in TFWD where Flyairth expresses trouble figuring out who is in the owsla and who isn't, with Hazel explaining that "we're all in the owsla, really".
The philosophy that they're all Owsla seems to be in line with his remark in chapter 1 after Toadflax bullies them. He basically wants every rabbit to be the nobility.

The film does lift a lot straight from the book but then...
(interestingly the film changes the cowslip stolen by Toadflax to a coltsfoot; not sure why)
...why this odd change...? :snowdrop2
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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #7 on: July 31, 2018, 05:44:50 PM »
Chapter 2!

Again a thing I had forgotten: the meaning of Threarah's name or even the fact that it was NOT just his status but his actual name.
I must say though, I viewed the Threarah as a rather lazy bunny who was leader for some unknown reason but reading about his exploits in his younger days makes him very interesting. I wouldn't have minded a prequel about him and early Sandleford.

Quote
'Oh, Hazel! I was dreaming. It was dreadful. You were there.'
:hazel2 "Never thought of myself as nightmare fuel before..."
(idk this amused me)

Interesting to see how Fiver's dream :glowingfiver predicts the key events to come but then all mixed together. Pretty sure I hadn't realized that before.

Imagine if they'd called  :bigwig3 'Furhead' throughout the book...!  :hannah4 :bigwig

Just like in the film I enjoy the dialogue between Threarah, Hazel and Fiver. It has a very clear atmosphere. I like how the Threarah clearly doesn't care for Fiver's warning but he remains, as the book described him, cool and calm.
...really I think if that prequel existed I would really love the Threarah  :woundwort

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Offline Chipster-roo

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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2018, 02:02:40 AM »
What also I noticed that I haven't noticed in a long time is how much of the movie dialogue has been lifted right from the book. [...]
That's something really interesting, I hadn't noticed either.  I paid close attention to the differences, (such as the coltsfoot, Cowslip telling the poem instead of Silverweed, etc.) but I never noticed these similarities.  It's really nice :pipkin I need to watch the film again...

On a note of things I DO remember: being confused by all the different plants and flowers and such. Also some words for the landscape. It can be a challenge when English is not your native language!
I've experienced the same issue :fiver2

Anyway, about chapter 2.  It's a pretty good chapter.  Like Chibiscuit mentions, Fiver's dream includes elements of many things to come, something I hadn't noticed until maybe my third reading.

But the chapter is mostly notable for the Threarah.  Outside of a few brief flashbacks when Holly retells Sandleford's destruction, he won't be appear again.  What we get, though, is really nice.  He can't really be blamed for refusing to act on Fiver's vague warning; there's no way he could have led everyone away from the warren.  At least the siblings didn't give up so easily though :hazel2 And several passages, including how the Threarah keeps refering to Hazel as "Walnut", were funny :dandelion

I must say though, I viewed the Threarah as a rather lazy bunny who was leader for some unknown reason but reading about his exploits in his younger days makes him very interesting. I wouldn't have minded a prequel about him and early Sandleford.
@florapaw wrote a fanfic about this, actually.  It is set in Sandleford several seasons before the events of the book, and a young Threarah, before he becomes Chief, is a major character.  It was really great :)


I read chapter 3 tonight; I'll post my thoughts on it in the morning.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2018, 02:05:06 AM by Chipster-roo »
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Offline Hawkbit

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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #9 on: August 01, 2018, 02:58:43 PM »
Chapter 3 - very short chapter, but it shows the amount of discontent within Sandleford warren, that captains like Bigwig or smart bucks like Blackberry could be convinced to leave the warren for the dangers of the unknown.  It isn't known how bad things are, but it must be quite bad for them to quickly just side with Fiver and Hazel without really knowing them.  It seemed to just happen quite quickly.  They just take Fiver at his word.  Reading it again, I'm surprised it was such a short transition.

Offline Chipster-roo

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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #10 on: August 01, 2018, 06:20:23 PM »
Chapter 3 provides the first introduction of Dandelion, although he doesn't get much character development yet.  What I find really interesting is Blackberry; while he briefly appeared in chapter 1, here we get the first glimpse at his ability to think outside the box.

Quote
...had listened carefully to Hazel's description of the notice board, remarking that he had always felt sure that men left these things about to act as signs or messages of some kind, in the same way that rabbits left marks on runs and gaps.
He's not wrong :blackberry-buck

We also get a bit more character development for Bigwig.  He expresses dissatisfaction with the warren, and the paragraph where Hazel thinks about his sudden decision to join them is really interesting.

One last thing: I really like this passage.
Quote
The Threarah doesn't like anything he hasn't thought of for himself.
Have you considered making each day count - doing something meaningful each day - instead of letting the days and weeks and months and years fly into oblivion? --Bright Side

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Offline Chibiscuit

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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #11 on: August 01, 2018, 08:40:59 PM »
Chapter 3  :hazel2

Quote
'No one will steal lettuces soon' said Fiver quietly
:pipkin-oh Ominous... and they all just casually ignored this remark. :fiver3

Quote
'I don't care if he is in the Owsla,' thought Hazel. 'If we get away from the warren, I'm not going to let Bigwig run everything, or why bother to go?'
This is again much in line with Hazel's idea that they should all be Owsla and it's clear he's not willing to live in a warren again where the Owsla have more privileges than outskirters.

Quote
'But anyway, there are too many bucks in this warren, and it's pretty poor fun for any rabbit that's not in the Owsla.'
:blackberry-buck Not enough does eh...? :blackberry3

Quote
'The funny thing is that you feel terrified to stay and I feel terrified to go. Foxes here, weasels there, Fiver in the middle, begone dull care!'
Foxes to the left of me, weasels to the right, here I am, stuck in the middle with Fiver!  :fiver

It's obvious that the main reason any rabbit will follow Hazel and Fiver is because of discontent with current affairs in the warren and not because they truly believe Fiver -- it seems like they're using it as an excuse more. I mean Bigwig was convinced because he believes in messages as he himself states but Blackberry isn't entirely sure why he goes. Bigwig also states the other members won't go because of Fiver but because of discontent.

One last thing: I really like this passage.
Quote
The Threarah doesn't like anything he hasn't thought of for himself.
I liked that passage too. Reminds me of certain types of bosses...
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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #12 on: August 01, 2018, 08:44:20 PM »
I must say though, I viewed the Threarah as a rather lazy bunny who was leader for some unknown reason but reading about his exploits in his younger days makes him very interesting. I wouldn't have minded a prequel about him and early Sandleford.
@florapaw wrote a fanfic about this, actually.  It is set in Sandleford several seasons before the events of the book, and a young Threarah, before he becomes Chief, is a major character.  It was really great :)

Ohhh that looks interesting! Thanks for mentioning it, Chipster. I've put it on my to-read list  :pipkin
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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #13 on: August 02, 2018, 08:05:08 PM »
Chapter 4  :dandelion

We get introduced to a bunch of new characters this chapter. I must confess I don't recall much of most of them nor what they'll do later on so that'll be fun to experience again.

Silver  :silver being the nephew of the Threarah really surprised me though! As well as Hazel's thoughts on Hawkbit:
Quote
a rather slow, stupid rabbit whose company for five snow-bound days underground had been distinctly tedious.
:hawkbit :hawkbit2

Quote
'Who's there?' he said. 'Dandelion?'
'No, it's Hawkbit'
I am really curious whether this was intentionally used as a joke or if I just find it funny. Because the flowers hawkbits are often confused for dandelions? ...no?

Hazel once again shows that he has no intention of letting Fiver and Pipkin getting the 'thin end of the stick', as he puts it, again, and it's interesting to see that despite just setting off, Hazel is already taking such future issues into consideration. Aside from perhaps Blackberry, I don't think the other rabbits are thinking that far ahead.

On a different note, the comparison to swallows gathering on telephone wires made me a bit sad because it reminded me that I almost never see this anymore. 15 years ago, things were much different... :(
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Re: Chapters 1-5 Discussion (July 30-August 5)
« Reply #14 on: August 02, 2018, 08:24:03 PM »
Quote
'No one will steal lettuces soon' said Fiver quietly
:pipkin-oh Ominous... and they all just casually ignored this remark. :fiver3

Quote
'But anyway, there are too many bucks in this warren, and it's pretty poor fun for any rabbit that's not in the Owsla.'
:blackberry-buck Not enough does eh...? :blackberry3

Quote
'The funny thing is that you feel terrified to stay and I feel terrified to go. Foxes here, weasels there, Fiver in the middle, begone dull care!'
Foxes to the left of me, weasels to the right, here I am, stuck in the middle with Fiver!  :fiver

Quote
The Threarah doesn't like anything he hasn't thought of for himself.
I liked that passage too. Reminds me of certain types of bosses...
I found these passages funny :buttercup

I read chapter 4, which gives us our first glimpse at Silver, Buckthorn, Acorn, Hawkbit, Speedwell and Holly.  As far as I can remember, none of these, except Silver and Holly, get much character development.  Unless you count Hawkbit in the series.  But in the book, he doesn't really get much more than a few sentences:

Quote
Hazel could recall Hawkbit - a rather slow, stupid rabbit whose company for five snowbound days had been distinctly tedious.
I kinda feel like writing a fanfic describing these five days

Buckthorn, Acorn and Speedwell don't really get much info.  Also it's interesting how it's Dandelion who brings Hawkbit along, while the other three were chosen by Blackberry.  Perhaps that explains their bromance in the series? :hawkbit2

We don't see a lot of Silver so far, but we see that he is a discontented owsla officer.  There might be truth to the rumours that he got the job because of Uncle Threarah, but he is still a really useful and nice rabbit.  Too bad he doesn't do much in the film :silver

The part of the chapter I find the most interesting would be that with Holly and the two others.  If I remember correctly, when Holly turns up at WD many chapters from now, it will be revealed that Bluebell was one of the other two; I don't think we ever find out the third one's identity.  It's really interesting how these two go from being hostile to Hazel and the others, to joining them after Fiver is proven right.

On a different note, the comparison to swallows gathering on telephone wires made me a bit sad because it reminded me that I almost never see this anymore. 15 years ago, things were much different... :(
Sad but true :( The wilderness is being destroyed, along with the creatures living there... :(
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