(urth) This Week in Google Alerts: _Home Fires_, 1982 roundtable

Stephen Hoy stephenhoy at yahoo.com
Fri Jun 7 08:27:34 PDT 2013

Marc: Thanks for sharing your ideas that relate the six/seven Caribbean island characters to other characters in the book. I imagined the interlude was a bit like Wolfe's dream sequences in other works, but hadn't looked much beyond Vodoo's obvious parallel to mind overlays. The sequence can be read as an instance of Wolfe blending myth/legend with speculative science, providing credibility to each. Relating shadowed characters to revealed characters adds a layer of storytelling that I missed until you pointed it out.

A few months ago, someone on list wondered why Wolfe had to bring Sharia law into _Home Fires_, Sharia law provides a plausible basis for a handless character like Achille. Without this backdrop, a reader might be inclined to come up with a different reason for his handlessness. Then we might not have the great scene which recalls Aesop's fable of the mouse and lion.

 From: Marc Aramini <marcaramini at yahoo.com>
To: The Urth Mailing List <urth at lists.urth.net> 
Sent: Friday, June 7, 2013 8:52 AM
Subject: Re: (urth) This Week in Google Alerts: _Home Fires_, 1982 roundtable

One more detail- Rick Johnson the cyborg with Susan, Skip's secretary, is tall, lanky, and wears a tweed jacket.  The description of whoever stabbed Chelle's mother at the restaurant as a tall older well dressed man fits both Rick and Blue ( Vanessa only saw him from the back) but one would assume onlookers would mention Blue's extreme age.  Rick's gun is left handed and the wound in Vanessa's back is on the right hand side.  Frustratingly, Skip never asks if it is indeed Rick sitting at the table of the restaurant with Susan, just establishing their connection on the volunteer-mercenary rescue boat. He first says how unlikely it was that it was Rick, then says that his defense of rick was nonsense - as a lawyer, he can argue whatever side suits his interests at the time. 

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On Jun 7, 2013, at 6:40 AM, Marc Aramini <marcaramini at yahoo.com> wrote:

> Also, skip forgets about meeting "Charles Blue" on page 191 and at the start of chapter 4 and keeps trying to place him every time he meets him (he also keeps forgetting the last names of the girls who die in the explosion meant for chelle's mother, supposedly planted by Susan) When Blue returns to Chelle at the end he is going by the name Smeedy.  At the dinner, blue gives skip the number for Coleman Baum and this is what gets zygmunt killed.  Perhaps Skip is in someway Blue's "friend" Coleman Baum or that phone number lead Zygmunt to the submerged spy cell.  
> However, there seems to be no firm connection between "Blue" and East Asia; it is suggested he works for the Os and the Nau as a double agent. 
> Skip misplaced his walking stick somewhere.  Chelle seems to ask about it and Skip blows that question off. Any chance this is the explosive device?  Blue has a blackthorne stick as well. 
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