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From: Peter Westlake <peter@harlequin.co.uk>
Subject: Re: (urth) Suzanne Delage
Date: Mon, 11 May 1998 00:58:42 +0100

At 13:17 1998/05/10 -0500, Adam wrote:
>Well, that's my theory.  Do you agree?  (Even if you don't, I've learned a
>lot about the story from this discussion, and I'd like to thank everyone
>who's participated.)

Seconded. I do like your theory, even though I don't believe it's the
one the author intended. It does fit the text pretty well, but I think
it isn't quite strongly enough implied. At least, I *think* I think that.

>> The vampire angle never occurred to me.  Neither have many other aspects   
>> of Mr. Wolfe's writings revealed to me in the urth.list archives.
>I have to admit, when I first read Mr. Westlake's post I thought he was
>saying Suzanne was not a vampire but a fairy or something of the sort. In
>that case, I have some other objections.  "Her complexion [was] as pure as
>milk" (367) does not, to my mind, describe a vampire's pallor; and the
>entire description does not feel vampiric to me.

True enough, and I would prefer her not to be a vampire.
It just seemed to fit, and to be reasonably Wolfeish.

> And the vampire theory
>doesn't explain why the narrator never met Suzanne, or forgot meeting her,
>since his wife's friend did not forget.

Not meeting her would just be a coincidence, as it is in Proust; it
starts the narrator looking through his yearbooks, and reveals the
subtext to the (possibly over-imaginative :-) reader, though not to
the narrator.

Of the theories I've heard so far, I like Alice's the best. It makes
most sense of the structure of the story - with Suzanne's daughter
appearing at the end, a very conspicuous part of the story. I do
wonder how many other readings there are, though - we haven't had
the one yet in which the Pie Club is really the Pudding Club and
they're all off ill having babies at exactly the same time, like
the women of Midwich. I'll spare you that one, I think.


*More Wolfe info & archive of this list at http://www.urth.net/urth/

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