Fire and Hemlock Epub Á Fire and PDF/EPUB or

Fire and Hemlock ⚡ [PDF] ✍ Fire and Hemlock By Diana Wynne Jones ✵ – fr Fire and Hemlock Jones Diana Wynne Livres Not Retrouvez Fire and Hemlock et des millions de livres en stock sur fr Achetez neuf ou d'occasion Fire and Hemlock ebook ePub Diana Wynne Jones Fire and fr Fire and Hemlock Jones Diana Wynne Livres Not Retrouvez Fire and Hemlock et des millions Fire and PDF/EPUB or de livres en stock sur fr Achetez neuf ou d'occasion Fire and Hemlock ebook ePub Diana Wynne Jones Fire and Hemlock Diana Wynne Jones HarperCollinsChildren’sbooks Des milliers de livres avec la livraison chez vous en jour ou en magasin avec % de rduction Fire and Hemlock ebook ePub Diana Wynne Jones Fire and Hemlock Diana Wynne Jones Firebird Des milliers de livres avec la livraison chez vous en jour ou en magasin avec % de rduction Fire and Hemlock Autres Achat Livre | fnac Fire and Hemlock Des milliers de livres avec la livraison chez vous en jour ou en magasin avec % de rduction Fire and Hemlock eBook de Diana Wynne Jones Lisez Fire and Hemlock de Diana Wynne Jones disponible chez Rakuten Kobo In the mind of a lonely imaginative girl who can tell where fiction ends and reality begins An epic fantasy spanning Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones Goodreads As nineteen year old Polly is packing to go away to college she looks at a picture on her wall called Fire and Hemlock a mysterious image of flame and smoke; suddenly new memories begin to enter her mind memories that reveal a childhood full of fantasies yet full of dangers a childhood in which she met a man named Thomas Lynn In order to figure out what's happened to her Polly must delve deeper and Fire and Hemlock Literature TV Tropes A novel by Diana Wynne Jones based on the stories of Tam Lin and Thomas the Rhymer with a s setting While staying at her grandmother's Polly Whittaker wandered onto the grounds of an old neighbouring mansion Hunsdon House and met a man called Thomas Lynn with whom she struck up a peculiar friendship Fire and Hemlock couk Jones Diana An epic fantasy spanning nine yearsThe Fire and Hemlock photograph above Polly's bed sparks memories in her that don't seem to exist any Halloween; nine years ago; she gatecrashed a funeral party at the big house and met Thomas Lynn for the first time Despite the fact that he's an adult they struck up an immediate friendship and began making up stories together stories in which Tom is a books to give you hope Fire and Hemlock by Diana fr Fire and Hemlock Jones Diana Wynne Livres Not Retrouvez Fire and Hemlock et des millions de livres en stock sur fr Achetez neuf ou d'occasion Fire and Hemlock ebook ePub Diana Wynne Jones Fire and Hemlock Diana Wynne Jones HarperCollinsChildren’sbooks Des milliers de livres avec la livraison chez vous en jour ou en magasin avec % de rduction Fire and Hemlock ebook ePub Diana Wynne Jones Fire and Hemlock Diana Wynne Jones Firebird Des milliers de livres avec la livraison chez vous en jour ou en magasin avec % de rduction Fire and Hemlock Autres Achat Livre | fnac Fire and Hemlock Des milliers de livres avec la livraison chez vous en jour ou en magasin avec % de rduction Fire and Hemlock eBook de Diana Wynne Jones Lisez Fire and Hemlock de Diana Wynne Jones disponible chez Rakuten Kobo In the mind of a lonely imaginative girl who can tell where fiction ends and reality begins An epic fantasy spanning Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones Goodreads As nineteen year old Polly is packing to go away to college she looks at a picture on her wall called Fire and Hemlock a mysterious image of flame and smoke; suddenly new memories begin to enter her mind memories that reveal a childhood full of fantasies yet full of dangers a childhood in which she met a man named Thomas Lynn In order to figure out what's happened to her Polly must delve deeper and Fire and Hemlock Literature TV Tropes A novel by Diana Wynne Jones based on the stories of Tam Lin and Thomas the Rhymer with a s setting While staying at her grandmother's Polly Whittaker wandered onto the grounds of an old neighbouring mansion Hunsdon House and met a man called Thomas Lynn with whom she struck up a peculiar friendship Fire and Hemlock couk Jones Diana An epic fantasy spanning nine yearsThe Fire and Hemlock photograph above Polly's bed sparks memories in her that don't seem to exist any Halloween; nine years ago; she gatecrashed a funeral party at the big house and met Thomas Lynn for the first time Despite the fact that he's an adult they struck up an immediate friendship and began making up stories together stories in which Tom is a books to give you hope Fire and Hemlock by Diana.

About the Author: Diana Wynne Jones

Diana was born in London the daughter of Marjorie née Jackson and Richard Aneurin Jones both Fire and PDF/EPUB or of whom were teachers When war was announced shortly after her fifth birthday she was evacuated to Wales and thereafter moved several times including periods in Coniston Water in York and back in London In her family finally settled in Thaxted Essex where her parents worked running an ed.

10 thoughts on “Fire and Hemlock

  1. Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ says:

    Polly is a capable young woman who has lived a completely ordinary life Or so she thinks until one day she's cleaning out her old bedroom and starts to remember in great detail; it takes up most of the book a different life a second set of memories revolving around a somewhat older man Thomas Lynn who had been her friend while she was a child and with whom she shared some very strange otherworldly experiences Polly realized view spoilerthat she was in love with Thomas when she was sixteen hide spoiler

  2. Jessica Jessica says:

    Pre 1985 Dianna Wynne Jones is my absolute favorite writer of all time Since I've gotten this far with cataloguing much of my reading history I had to make sure this fact is recorded here somewhere I actually haven't read this one my favorite in years mostly because I'm terrified I'll discover it can no longer do for me anything like what it did when I was a kidI really wish I could read anything now that would give me the kind of experience I had as a child reading Ms Jones's books Somewhere she has an essay or an interview where she talks about the difference between writing for kids and writing for adults What she says is that you don't have to explain every little thing to kids the way you do to grownups because they just intuitively understand the unwritten logic of the world you're describing which I really think is true It's because she exploits this that her books are so amazing they hook into some kind of childhood mental processes and content so that much of the story doesn't need to be written and is actually being told in collaboration with the wee developing mind on a much vivid and intensely personal level than would be possible just from reading a regular book if that makes any sense I guess as you get older all that fluid multicolored unlimited swirly stuff in the immature brain dries up and whatever's left gets dammed and filtered into these confining narrow crusty little channels I can't engage with fiction at all the way I did when I was a kid which is the chief reason why I don't read much any now that I'm grown Now I sit there and think Here I am reading this book or This book is well written or that doesn't seem plausible How deeply unsatisfying is that?Dianna Wynne Jones's best books follow one brilliant pattern which I'm not really going to get into here except to say that the endings are always the same huge chaotic messy implosions in which the characters time space and a thousand different worlds all reach some frenetic pitch and then collapse in on themselves with a hugely satisfying crash Hooray When I was younger my dream was to travel to England in an effort to meet Dianna Wynne Jones I sort of let go of that dream though when I realized I couldn't think of anything to say Maybe now I could tell her Oh screw Harry Potter And then I could thank herThank you Ms Jones

  3. Spencer Orey Spencer Orey says:

    This book is wonderful It's a cool remix of two old fairy stories in an 80s setting It's also a coming of age story about a girl Polly who gets pulled into some magical drama because of a dude she meets when she accidentally crashes a funeral If it's magic at all? There's a great tension around whether anything is really going on It's also a story about surviving bad families Polly's parents are haunting great characters with depth that change in little waysMy one real negative is that one thing that didn't feel right was the romance I like a good romance In this one there's an age difference that never feels uite right I'm not sure how it landed at the time but it felt pretty creepy to me in the here and now Like plot wise it made enough sense but other than that hm Maybe if Polly had started the book much older? It definitely would feel very creepy in a book today It isn't written to sound creepy Yeah I dunno about all thatAnyways Some of the scenes with Polly and her family will really stick with meIt's one of those books that after reading it I was suddenly aware of some of its rippling influence especially The Bone ClocksLooking forward to reading a LOT by Diana Wynn Jones What are your favorites?

  4. Elena Elena says:

    I had a lot of fun reading Fire and Hemlock and if you like DWJ don’t miss it I won’t review it but I’d like to make a reading guide that will allow me to remember how things work The mechanics are not simple but the book doesn’t need the exposure of its guts to be enjoyed Except perhaps for the ending That bit is confusingFor DWJ's thoughts on her book read her essay on heroics in Fire Hemlock I rehash lots of what she says thereLet’s start with the underlying myths 1 Tam Lin and Thomas the Rhymer 2Hero and Leander and 3 Cupid and Psyche Those three myths give how the plot should be read on the emotional level It is a story of a female Hero in a personal relationship Tam Lin gives the basic plot a previous attachment to the ueen of the Fairies solved by holding on to true love Cupid and Psyche suggest that the Hero will commit a fault Like in the myth it’s spying as it signifies holding on too much it is a departure from Tam Lin and must afterwards seek her beloved; it introduces the theme of the seeker Tom has Cupid’s attributes think the bow from the cello and his deficient eyesight and shows Laurel as Venus the powerful source of his gifts It’s also important to understand that like Cupid’s allegory of profane and divine love Polly’s journey is that of locating in herself the heroic bits and living up to their standard That’s essentially why she can never withdraw what she says at the end despite a priori being free from Laurel’s influence It would mean the failure of her heroic journey The story of Hero and Leander gives the rhythm of Tom and Polly’s relationship they meet time and time again but are each time separated and it suggests that he must go to hell at the end and that she’ll follow him there One is reminded of the myth of Orpheus another musician who must seek his beloved in Hades and loses her due to lack of patience But the timing is off he’s the musician but she’s the seeker and the fault is earlier in the plot and thus was already committed when the lovers are in hell It's completely different to go to hell for your sins than to stay there being previously innocent Here her betrayal frees him Orpheus doesn’t give plot points but we recognize the common themeThe structure and tone are from 1The Odyssey 2 TS Eliot’s Four uartets 31001 Nights The Odyssey gives its structure as heroic travel told in flashbacks It also goes back to the hell theme Odysseus must go to Hades after leaving Circe the witch goddess who murdered her husband Of course Laurel is a witch goddess who murders husbands TS Eliot is the underlying music that is either turned up or down when DWJ needs it It gives the garden the pond the string uartet and the final wordplay It also gives the literal key to the resolution and the general obsession with the passage of time I would argue that of the multiple references Four uartets is the first and most important driving force of the narrative because it gives the tone Lastly 1001 nights introduces the idea of storytelling as lifesaving mean the blur between reality and imagination of which Eliot says “human kind Cannot bear much reality” and the idea that the female character is fated to save the male character That appears also in Tam Lin It's so problematic that you better throw in the weight of as many myths as possible to make it palatable By now it should be obvious that Fire Hemlock strongly relies on trinities First the trinity of the setting based on the permutations of “here” and “now” from the vases The “here now” where Tom is an adult cellist and Polly is a child who reads books and has friends The “nowhere” where Lauren rules and where the train leads It’s clearly reminiscent of hell including the persephonic episode where Polly refuses to eat and drink The “where now?” inhabited by Hero Tan Could Tan Audel Tan Hanivar and Tan Thare the giant the ironmonger and everything they imagine togetherEach setting is build in with the others like interlocked spirals You can imagine the DNA with three lines but I would prefer to see it as a rotating jigsaw puzzle Each of the three rotations shows a different patternThere are also triunvirates of characters The one of the “here now” is deceptively important Fire and Hemlock is unlike many fantasies a book of personal relationships and the characterizations of Polly’s friends is given much attention We have Nina the dumb one Polly and Fiona the clever one We also have the trinity of ages Granny wisdom Ivy the couch dweller and Polly still the seeker Ivy could be replaced by Laurel They are similar in Laurel’s mistrust of human imagination Tom is punished with having what he imagines become true and come back to bite him That's how he becomes True Thomas; unlike Thomas the Rhymer who was true without threats Laurel confuses facts and fiction at will It’s also what Ivy does Again the blur between reality and imagination is a major theme found in 4 uartets 1001 nights We could lump together Ivy and Laurel have Polly still in the middle and on the other end her father and his partner who have outed imagination from their life The triad LaurelIvyPolly has the interest of not only evoking the old idea of maidenmature womancrone but of being very close to a particular celebrated triple goddess that composed of Persephone Demeter and Hekate The parallels are obvious Persephone travels between worlds Demeter is perpetually abandoned Hekate is the goddess of witchcraft Despite her rigged gifts Laurel does keep her bargains and that’s why Polly starts opportunely to remember her where now? life Her pact with Laurel was to forget but she was to be left alone and Laurel can’t keep her part because of Seb and Leroy Returning to the problem of identity Laurel is the ueen of the fairies Venus Circe Calypso Hades Hekate all of whom similar archetypes But who are Polly and Tom? The truth is that Diana filled her book with so much subtext that the main characters must constantly switch roles each has a the mythic personification corresponding to each one of these references but they’re not fixed in a particular archetype And hence the name Polly “many” She is the crucible for all of DWJ's intertextual plays Tom? Cupid Tam Lin but he's mainly Thomas the Rhymer as the name says It seems relevant to note that the ueen of the fairies in the ballad shows him the way to three lands heaven hell and home the theme of eating in hell is revisited as is the ability to return home from fairyland and Truth is essential to be able to walk one of those roads Thomas was a prophet; and that's one reason why Tom always seems to know so much than Polly And boom One way to understand the ending is right there 1 Thomas must be true to walk the way back home and that implies giving up the cello Thomas the Rhymer is given the choice between prophecy and becoming a harper giving up imagination the horse and also giving up Polly he must be true to Laurel too in order to fulfill his contract with the ueenAnd so we have come to the ending There's one interpreation above but don't worry there's many This is also how it can be understood2 As the literal illustration of Eliot“To arrive where you are to get from where you are not
You must go by a way wherein there is no ecstasy
In order to arrive at what you do not know
You must go by a way which is the way of ignorance
In order to possess what you do not possess
You must go by the way of dispossession
And where you are is where you are not”She’s in nowhere she must apply the poem and do the opposite of what she should do that’s to say as per the Ballad of Tam Lin holding on But that in the novel is based on the knowledge of the internal logic of another work the uartets and is too unsatisfying an ending for a story with emotional resonance I understand that bit of the uarters as a meditation on change and how it integrates in time it's as surprised as any mathematician by our ability to go from 0 to 1 and to be in 0 until we are in 1 Although great poetry I don't think that subtext can really be applied to Fire and Hemlock because it goes in any case from 1 to 0 and because we are at the climax of the novel where a reflection on change a theme that is present of course in the measure that it is a YA novel but not really dominant would blend very badly with the heroic background Myths never change; Ulysses Cupid even Psyche learn but don't change So I do think that DWJ took the chance to use the poem as a literal guide but only as an in jokeLet’s look at it a bit using now a narrative key and not a litterary one3 We see just what we already knew that Laurel rigs her games The same way that she inverted her gift to Thomas she builds a duel based on weakness The less you have the you win Thomas doesn’t understand it in time though Ann does and Polly must strip him of what he has That works within the walls of the novel but is less interesting in itself Unless maybe we think that he does gather his inner strength once he has abandoned the props and as the epigraph to Eliot says“The way upward and the way downward are the same”That is a moral way to understand the ending Weakness and strength are two faces of the same coin etc etc Do I think it's the one we should chose? Honesetly no I don't think DWJ is as big on fables as she is on myths I think we should seek the key to our ending in a way that it resolves the problem between blurring reality and imagination and Polly's heroic journey both of which stand at the heart of the novel Change and inner strenght do not And I don't find in the book any true clue to Tom gathering his inner strenght once Polly betrays him he just goes and wins4 Or we can stick to following the lines of the narration but blame the fact that he sinks not on the duel itself but on his original gift from Laurel that always turns what he summons against him Read that way Tom's lucky not to have brought Polly on his behalf because Leroy might have called on Laurel herself But I'm not sure how to interpret the rules of the duel in that light Why say it at all? It seems redundant to me5Another way to see it would be with the pond as an allegory of imagination the cello Laurel's gift personified in the horse and Polly bring Tom closer to it but if he disappears in there he can never come back to the here now artist's descent into madness thin veil between reality and imagination etc I find I like this interpretation because I think it correlates nicely with real life Tom's struggles and strength must be focused on his job music his relationship Polly and his hobbies storytelling but if he's goes in them to deep he loses his foothold on reality That's a real problem directly deriving from his strenghts; hence the rules of the duel His gift goes against him because it is a gift from a goddess never one to make the person that receives it less special or less genius y The ways I find to understand the ending are not entirely integrable Almost but not uite And it could be interesting to seek a different way of understanding the ending for every set of rules the ones of the where now the nowhere and the here now but that's a job for another day And do Tom and Polly end up together despite the fact that she has to keep meaning what she said? Sure It just means that she has to keep loving Tom enough to let him go or she’ll lose him It’s the same curse under which any sane relationship operatesYou see I like the ballad of Tam Lin Janet is awesome But it is the story of a woman pregnant by a married man unhappily married to the ueen of the Fairies but still holding on to him despite him being horrible to her he turns into monsters Uuuh That accounts for the fact that the ueen gets the ominous last words in the Ballad there is no there can't be a happy ending in store for Janet and Tam Lin on those premises That’s also why Tam Lin is such a handy ballad to invert DWJ knows that and she introduces a prop the Fairy King In other words the ueen cheated too Leroy is the way out for Tom because he hurt him both textually in the duel and in the context of the ballad If he hadn’t Tom couldn’t be a moral hero and Polly couldn’t operate the crucial change from holding on to letting go And Tom is a moral hero; that’s the meaning of him saying “I did my best” at the end and the interest of the character of Leslie who has no morals and serves as a counterpointAnd how exactly does Polly rejects Tom? She tells him the exact truth; and that’s important because their relationship previously had been based on fusing reality and imagination DWJ has already said with Ivy and Laurel that that won’t work At the end of the book they leave the “nowhere” and the “here now?” and start to live in reality They won't be swallowed up by imagination That’s why book reading fades away from the narration when Polly grows into adulthood And thus Diana says storytime is over we have to go back to real life hey meta; if you want to be in love keep your facts straight and go beyond holding on to not clinging But she never goes so far as to write that down; she hardly ever writes anything important explicitly That freuently makes it seem like she abuses of deux ex machina even when she doesn't but it helps understanding her stories on a intuitive level I do think that Fire Hemlock is satisfactorily endedA last note I'm amazed that she made the whole groom knows and raises his future bride since her childhood work for me because god do I hate that trope

  5. Kat Kennedy Kat Kennedy says:

    When I tried to think of a way to describe this book I kept having a GIF go through my head One that I'd seen recently and felt summed up this novel perfectlyimage error

  6. Chris Chris says:

    Fire and Hemlock is one of Diana Wynne Jones’ haunting books with characters situations and references that linger long after a first reading It’s well known that the plot outline is taken from Northern ballads recounting the stories of Young Tam Lin and Thomas the Rhymer especially as she heads each chapter with uotes from the ballads and refers explicitly to the tales in her text The tales of a young man lured to the Otherworld by a fairy and in the case of Tam Lin then rescued by a young woman are purloined and brought into the 20th century along with a heady mix of The Golden Bough and a whole host of other plots and characters Thomas Lynn is the young man Laurel his fairy ueen and young Polly whom we follow from just before she starts secondary education to when she is in her first year at Oxford is Tom’s apparent saviour We also get to meet Polly’s dysfunctional family her grandmother and her school friends along with Tom’s associates both human and otherworldly The novel succeeds on a human level largely because it seems to have a autobiographical flavour to it Polly like Jones is drawn to books even though her parents largely disapprove and like Jones is able to create other realities through the power of story Jones’ book references uite apart from their relevance to the plot as when Tom insists that Polly reads the book on fairy tales he has sent her must be a good indicator of Diana's own childhood and adult reading matter Joan Aiken's The Wolves of Willoughby Chase is one of the first mentioned published in 1962 not too long before Jones embarked on her own writing career and which may have been an inspiration; then there's some E Nesbit stories Treasure Island The Three Musketeers of course and tales of King Arthur a running theme in many of Diana's books most obviously in The Merlin Conspiracy and Hexwood Another long recognised influence on Fire and Hemlock is T S Eliot’s Four uartets principally the images and structure though many of Jones’ potential young adult readership would remain less aware of this as I was until it was pointed out to meThere are so many avenues to explore in this tantalising novel but I will begin by thinking about the significance of names I'll start with the fairy who seduces the Tom Lin character Laurel or to give her the names she has in the Will reading which takes place early in the novel Eudora Mabel Lorelei Perry Lynn Leroy Eudora good excellent gift was one of the Greek sea nymphs but perhaps the name is used rather ironically here as is Mabel from French aimable loveable Lorelei of course is the siren of the Rhine a literary creation apparently a river nymph who ensnared passing males Perry probably originally of Welsh origin ap Hari son of Harry here is probably a reference to peri an exotic alternative name for a fairy Lynn of course was her married name while Leroy is the surname of her new husband Morton; Leroy is from French le roi the king referring to Seb's father as an Oberon type of Fairy King The other father figure in Polly's life is her own weak willed dad Reg whose name also harks back to Latin rex regis king It's all rather Golden Bough isn't it? Jones of course dwells on this at length later the the bookLorelei naturally got anglicised as Laurel The bay laurel is used in cooking but it is advisable not to eat the whole leaves as they can damage internal organs so I suppose this is appropriate for Polly's adversary Another bane of Polly's life is her mother Ivy poison perhaps by name and certainly poison by nature though this being Britain where there is no poison ivy the smothering nature of the parasitic ivy is what is being alluded to Another little etymological puzzle the enigmatic Mary Fields what's her role? She is of course a natural rival for Tom's affections with Polly Whittacker white acreThe novel has three locations London Oxford and Bristol all three of which are places where DWJ lived and which reflect on the part autobiographical nature of Fire and Hemlock Somewhere in the middle of this triangle must be Middleton hence its name perhaps Nearby Stow on the Water is a mash up of two real places in the Cotswolds Bourton on the Water a largish village characterised by lots of pedestrian bridges over the river and presumably liable to flooding and Stow on the Wold which exactly matches up with the description of the fictional Stow except the market cross is recent than the Saxon period In Jones’ fictional England topography and atmosphere are similar to but not the same as the real England of the mid 80s and are her attempt to transfer the world of the Scottish Border ballads to the southern Britain that she knew wellOxford gets a relatively short space in the novel; while Jones went to St Anne's College Polly in the novel goes to St Margaret's St Margaret's is the novel's version of the real life Lady Margaret Hall another college founded for women students and this college's coat of arms is instructive First of all it features a portcullis the gate features in the incident in a Ghost Castle at the fair and secondly the motto is Souvent me souviens I often remember highly appropriate for one of the overarching themes of the novel Possibly coincidentally there is an early years school in Headington Oxford called Hunsdon House which may have inspired Laurel’s supernatural mansion did Diana's children attend this school when she lived there?Like many others I've had to reread the ending uite a few times and yes it is very obscure what has actually happened and how Polly realises that the only way she can save Tom from dying is to lose him but somehow she and Tom are together in the final chapter I can only surmise that we have to add together the two insights that Polly gives us 1 Tom has been using her to try to save himself from his fate; and 2 Polly says she doesn't want to see him again In a way nearly everybody is using somebody else even Polly’s Granny who has been trying to find out what happened to her own loved one in the past and also in a way we all use others strangers as well as friends; the point being that we put others first before ourselves if we truly love them When Polly declares she doesn't want to see Tom again presumably she means the selfish Tom who tried to save himself whom we contrast with Polly who is prepared to give up her happiness to save Tom Jones’ lovely wordplays on Now and Here and Nowhere which we first meet on stone vases in the grounds of Hundon House are clearly a facet of Jones’ favourite themes of parallel worlds and existences related in this case to the different paths referenced in the ballads This may be easier to fathom than the book’s title Commentaries have pointed out the significances of these two story elements fire standing for life in particular creative energy hemlock standing for death the two representing the uick the living and the dead In the finale hemlock plants are described as growing next to the pool the portal to death Jones spent some of her childhood years in Wales so she would have been familiar with the Welsh word tân which means fire Hence the hero names of the members of the uartet which of themselves seem otherwise uite arbitrary So some of the underlying symbolism the flooding in Stow the depressing rainy British weather the ripples of the Hunsdon House pool can be seen as reflecting the antithesis of the literary and creative sparks that Polly and her friends exhibit Perhaps the Tam Lin of the ballads reminded Jones of Welsh tân 'fire' and Welsh llyn 'lake' and from these she took her cuesThe use of musical terms in the novel might help in interpreting the ending Fire and Hemlock really is about the power of words to change reality and Jones like many another fantasy writer also uses words to subvert what passes for reality So though Eliot's Four uartets poems are implicitly referred to and Tom is part of a string uartet in Fire and Hemlock the addition of a fifth player Polly is what changes the dynamics of everything That is reflected in the divisions of the book four parts like the movements of a string uartet composition but with the addition of a tail piece the Coda an envoi to the work This coda is Polly herself and it marks the real division in her life from being the tomboy I use the word deliberately that Tom has used for his own purposes to the young woman who has shouldered the responsibilities of being an adultThe choice of words for tempi in the different parts is very deliberate Allegro vivace both words mean 'lively' with allegro also implying briskuick; this is Fire as Life Andante cantabile at a walking pace not slow really but also sung there's a lot here about the books Tom sends Polly including The Oxford Book of Ballads Allegro con fuoco 'with fire'; how explicit can Jones be? The third movement traditionally a rather sedate minuet morphed into a faster playful scherzo by the 19th century but here it has morphed even Presto molto agitato final movements were invariably very fast and so this part of the book urgently rushes like a headstrong horse to its climactic scene at Hunsdon HouseA coda is something tagged on and in music it is usually the final section of a movement In this novel it stands outside the formal scheme a fifth not movement Marked scherzando its musical meaning 'playful' refers also to Jones' intention for this section it is a play on words a pun a joke this is what scherzo literally translates as in Italian She is trying to say that at the last Polly's words are a verbal sleight of hand a word magician's way of misdirecting Laurel as to her real intentions And like any good magician Jones doesn't uite reveal how she has done the trick

  7. Amai Amai says:

    One of the best and most incomprehensible books I've ever laid my eyes on It makes my heart ache physically literally it's so good it hurts My long long LONG time favourite Howl's Moving Castle became a runner up after I finished with Fire and Hemlock It just really messes with my insides I want to be this bookRight after finishing the book I was just really frustrated – the ending made my face screw and I just had to throw the book god knows where I'm sorry Tom the poor book was probably in great agony for the whole night and curse myself to sleep I went through such a load of feelings and emotions throughout the book and in the end I felt like the tension was never truly released Which makes this book in my eyes both unbearable and genius In a way it reminds me of Laird Koenig's The Little Girl Who Lives Down The Lane in that it makes you absolutely fall in love with the characters and you wish them all the best yet you can never be certain whether they got their happy ending because there's an eternal cliffhanger don't we have a law against those? Only this was a great enormous load betterI was trembling by the time I got to part four Like literally shaking all over and desperateNow despite the fact I've loved DWJ for years I've only read the Castle series and the Chrestomanci series before because I only recently got my hands on some other books of hers But I'm kind of glad I only read it now It's uite clear Fire and Hemlock is mature compared to her kiddie ish novels Much longer much complex and detailed and much relationship driven I'm not saying kids couldn't enjoy it – I certainly would have had I read it when I was younger – but personally I think I benefitted from the perspective my age gave me over Polly's growth and character developmentI loved Tom Lynn and his relationship to Polly I loved how incomplete and selfish Tom's feelings and motives towards Polly turned out to be And how – in the end – perfectly and devotedly Polly still loved him I loved the way Polly grew to him and good god The frustration I mean I'm okay with age differences and lolita ish material in literature because you know fictional characters no harm done but this was so different from anything else I'd read It wasn't just a few years which would have made it into sweet little puppy love which is cute It wasn't exactly a perverse unhealthy unbalanced pedoesue relationship which would have made it interesting in a dark sad way No it was too gentle too okay and too realistic for me to bear It just felt like they were meant to go through all those stages and all those feelings It was clear from the beginning there was going to be a romance between those two but there was never anything wrong about it Tom was always reasonable about it except for the SILKEN BACK SMUT oh my god the scolding he gave her The lady doth protest too much and Polly had the right to be a little unreasonable because well she was young and in a way very naïve And I can't seem to go on about this subject because my heart feels like it's about to break Yes I was utterly touched by their relationship and uh oh yeah alright Wow I just really don't get it why so many people saw it somehow creepy or gross because there was never anything truly inappropriate going on at least from Tom's side It was just beautiful and so true and so desperately touching I almost lost itOverall I think Fire and Hemlock was one of the most rereadable books I've read even compared to Diana's other novels which I've always loved rereading because I've felt like there's always something I didn't catch last time This book was like Diana multiplied by ten And after I felt like I really understood the ending it became even better It's just what I call absolute literary perfection The essay at the end of the newest edition was also perfect I felt like I was going to faint whilst reading it because of all the little details Diana included to sculpt it into absolute flawlessnessThis book is mint I want to give it way than five stars

  8. Deepthi Deepthi says:

    I wish I could give this book infinite stars

  9. Deborah O& Deborah O& says:

    Re read March 25 2020SO GOOD Even amazing on a second read 3 I may add updated thoughtsOriginal review First read January 1 2016 Original review posted here This is like an essay than a review I’m afraid but it’s what I could come up withI’ve tried to write this review a couple times now and I am in despair over it because Fire and Hemlock is simply too vast and well as Eleanor Cameron said of a different book in “The Green and Burning Tree“ it is “a wild glimmering shadowed elusive kind of book” That’s the best description I can find for it and it’s not even in my own wordsI really want to review this book but have absolutely no idea how So I’m going to start typing and hope something comes out of it besides an incoherent ramble the size of a London trainFire and Hemlock is set in a modern day England in the ’80s both of which are slightly alien and unfamiliar to this young ish American reader so even though it’s “contemporary” and set in the real world it actually felt a bit fantastical to me Which is a good thing Occasionally I would go “Oh So that’s what such and such is likecalled in England Fascinating” or “Who knew that you flip records over to listen to the other side?” I do know about tapes but not recordsBeneath the seemingly ordinary setting and life of the heroine Polly there runs a strong undercurrent of unusual happenings rather frightening fantastical goings on and some snatches of wild shadowed fae stuff and magical sorts of things The fact that the ordinary and the fantasy blend so flawlessly together in this book attests once again to Diana Wynne Jones’ brilliant skill as a writerAs a retelling of the old folk taleballad about Tam Lin and also about Thomas the Rhymer all the bits relating to both that wove into the story were fascinating especially in said modern settingThe book left me with a rather dizzying near belief that it was something that had really happened Yes fantasy and all It was so real that one nourishes a distinct and startlingly firm suspicion that the whole thing must have actually happened If not to the author herself at least to someone she knew It has that strong of a feeling of being real — at times painfully so And in just the sort of elusive mad sort of way that is always a part of the most real yet strange dreams I imagine that’s how it would feel like if such things happened to you or IThere’s stuff about writing too which was great and Polly’s a sort of writer I liked her It was fascinating and realistic as well to watch her grow up along the way in the book from about a ten year old girl to a nineteen year old young woman A lot of it’s her looking back and trying to remember things about when she was growing upPolly and Tom’s friendship — perhaps growing into something — is the heart of the book I just loved it so much They make up stories together which in strange and sometimes terrible ways seem to come true Their friendship is perfectly natural and beautifully written and just I can’t even explain it but I adore that entire aspect of the book especially the blooming but unconventional romance It’s all just so masterfully doneOf course the best thing about the book is Mr Thomas Lynn himself yet another fabulous unpigeonholeable that’s a word I swear; or should be character which this author seems to excel at Tom plays cello and drives “like a hero” aka like a madman; he is a horrible driver and it’s glorious; the parts with his horse I mean car were hilarious highlights of the book has an epic abrupt startling silence which people run up against when he doesn’t want to talk about things and a sort of yelping laugh which cuts off and he has colorless hair and glasses which are like another character and he will perfectly seriously discuss what most people would call “make believe” with young Polly since of course they’re in the business of being heroes and sends her books all the time and you just sort of feel safe when he’s around even if horrible fantastical things happen and he’s part of a strange frightening mystery entangled in it and can’t get free and you just feel awful for him but you know he wouldn’t want you to and that he’s all right really; except that he’s really not all right at all; and he’s mysterious and also very open in a way somehow and you can’t really explain him at all and apparently I need to talk with people who’ve read this because otherwise I’ll just ramble on about him forever? I’m done now AlmostBut really what isn’t to love about a fellow who says of books“don’t do that to that book You’ve got it open lying on its face” Mr Lynn said “The poor thing’s in torment”And about fairy stories“Only thin weak thinkers despise fairy stories Each one has a true strange fact hidden in it you know which you can find if you look”It’s a giant of a book At 420 very large hardback pages it’s uite longer than the usual small to medium books by Diana Wynne Jones that I’ve read before with a few exceptions and yet I never wanted it to end About halfway through around when I felt like one of her other books would have been finishing I panicked and thought “Oh no what if it ends soon? It needs to go on and on and on” And then I checked and with relief and a sort of thrill of triumph realized I had still a large amount to read Though my practical side threw a fit seeing that it was after midnight and demanding that I go to bed — which I naturally ignored The one strange — or not so strange — fact about Diana Wynne Jones books is that almost all of them that I’ve read I’ve devoured in a sitting Or at least in a single day Which is fine for ordinarily lengths But not so much for a 400 page fantastic monster of a book which I started late at night to begin with This was a stay up till after 3 am sort of book I REGRET NOTHINGIt is at once new and old It gave me the feeling that I might have read it before maybe or had always known about it while being at the same time entirely undiscovered It reminded me of several other books that I’ve read and loved or considering the publication dates I might better say they remind me of it while at the same time being completely uniue It’s like it somehow took snatches of a ton of books I love and weaved bits of them together into something new but being its own thing at the same time The Penderwicks The Facts and Fictions of Minna Pratt as well as other books by Diana Wynne Jones I feel like there were several others as well Also all of the books it mentions which Tom sends to Polly to read were so fun to see listed — both the ones I’ve read and loved and the ones I’ve not read and in some cases not even heard of which of course makes me want to read them“Polly had discovered The Lord of the Rings and was reading it for the fourth time under her desk in Maths” was a particularly fabulous line in the bookIn the category of complaints it had its faults — all books do well except for a small handful including a certain other book by the same authorI will admit that I wanted much of Tom himself in the story than he actually appeared in but that can hardly be helped when it’s from the point of view of a girl who’s not allowed to see him and only does so from time to timeIt is also set in a modern setting and therefore has some of the inevitable problems which are why I don’t like modern books much public school so called “friends” split up families etc but I liked this one in spite of them — like I said it felt so real so I can’t exactly complain about what happened as if it’s just a plot device if it happened now can I? I will say that poor Polly kind of has a dreadful life Actually Tom does too And yet here they are plowing along I suppose that’s heroism right thereAnd the ending seemed to be rather sudden and leading up to it extremely vague to my mind so that I am still extremely confused and not entirely sure exactly what happened though that could have just been the fact that by the time I reached the ending it was past 3 am so that could have been the clock andor a sleep fogged mind talking I also am of the opinion that many Diana Wynne Jones books reuire a second or perhaps third reading to fully understand it especially some endings so perhaps I’ll be all right if I read it again And I don’t think it’s the author’s fault I feel like it just went over my head or something I do relish a thing that I don’t uite understand when it means there’s always to unearth in subseuent go throughsIt’s a book that you have to think about which might not please some people but definitely pleased meAnd of course it’s the sort of book one spends most of the next day or week or month occasionally dipping back through it and rereading — preferably aloud if any poor soul is near to be uoted at — the fabulously hilarious bits and smiling insanely over just because you like it even though you can’t uite understand why That’s my experience anywayI read this book on New Year’s Day as I said staying up till past 3 because it simply had to be finished which was a marvelous way to kick off my reading for the yearAnd yes it has taken me nearly an entire month to get around to writing this review I still don’t feel as if I’ve done it justice It’s uite simply impossible to describeI don’t think it’s everyone’s cup of tea but I think it may have been mine And uite good tea at that Properly and gloriously British bitter and sweet at once and just the thing for a long rainy day when one is longing for an elusive tale with a dose of ordinary mixed up with a dash of fantastic as well as one of a kind vibrant characters a glorious love story Tom would be berating me for that; sorry and an enormous amount of classic Diana Wynne Jones humorI’ll be reading Fire and Hemlock again I hopeAnd if you read this entire review I uite sincerely applaud you and offer you cupcakes Here

  10. Mir Mir says:

    I was disappointed in this when I was 10 but all my friends seem to have loved it so I gave it another try It makes sense now although it is still rather confusing especially the end I enjoyed it this time around but it is still not among my favorite or even second tier favorites of DWJ's books There were just too many elements that didn't work for me I didn't like Polly that much as a character even though I thought her depiction was excellent I liked the parts about reading and writing but then that sort of died away as Polly got older In the end there were too many elements not adeuately explained But I'm the no loose ends type

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